These volumes of Knights of Sidonia are the lead-in for the big climax of the story. Tanijiro picks his romantic interest in these volumes, and the Sidonia gets ready for their big final assault on the Greater Cluster Ship, only for a new wrinkle to potentially ruin their plans – and the ship.
This chapter basically takes the story and makes it much more personal. From Tanijiro and who he chooses, and how the runner-ups react. We also get a little of the horror that some of the middle installments have lacked, with a vignette from the point of view of a pilot who is turned intoa gauna, as they realize what has happened to them. This sequence in particular is incredibly effective, with both solid body horror and psychological order as well.
That said, because this is all setup, there isn’t a lot to talk about at this point in the manga – everything here is building things up for a payoff in the last two volumes where they’ll hopefully stick the landing. The vignette earlier is a great moment, and really calls back to some of the more horrific elements of the manga from much earlier in the story, where it had a much stronger Attack on Titan anyone-can-die-at-any-time vibe.
However, there’s also a lot of the rom-com Tanijiro-walks-in-on-girls-changing-and-gets-punched-in-the-face vibe that the series has also built into. In a way – these two volumes, while they don’t have a lot of plot, do encapsulate a lot of the shift this manga has had over the past 10 volumes.
In all, these two volumes mainly exist to do a whole lot of setup – once I’ve finished the series, I’ll give a more in-depth review of the manga on its own, and how well the ending fares.
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