Legend of the Galactic Heroes Season 2 – Understated and Epic

Here is my post on season 1 where I stupidly pretended that I had seen the whole thing. I have not deliberately put the show on hold between that post and this one but it just took a while for reasons I will explain!

Legend of the Galactic heroes (lotgh) does not feel like the epic spectacle that others claim it to be. It is however brilliant if you give it the chance to be brilliant.

What I mean is that this series is never going to hold your hand and explain why everything is so important. It has even more dramatic and excellent moments of something like game of thrones however gives you less opportunity to appreciate it and can often come across as underwhelming.

For example in game of thrones if an important character dies it often an epic and important impact and it’s communicated brilliantly. Lotgh is like having these events constantly without the impact and follow up so it’s easy to dismiss the show and not care about a lot of things. This is why people can drop off from watching the show so easily, and why it’s taken me so long to get to even finishing half the show! I am so interested in the world and setting but the lack of “WOW DID YOU SEE THAT HAPPEN! THAT’S AMAZING” factored into the show really made it difficult to me.

I’m now in the legend of galactic hero’s phase where you start to become hyped at everything and anything even though the show really doesn’t show it! And there’s something so great about you being hyped instead of the show that makes it shine so much.

I re-joined season 2 during operation Ragnarock and became sucked into the world of complex politics and warfare. I love the setting of the show because it’s a futuristic world set a few thousand years into the future and feels so real. It takes place in the time before there is a huge amount of planets where 50% of the universe is discovered and is instead in a place where both sides have around 25 billion people and 10-20 planets or solar systems. So it feels like a natural progression of things, and a future that could one day be reached, terrifying but also fascinating.

I am going to go into spoilers now because the ending was so brilliant. It’s because someone wins just under half way through the epic 110 episode story. And I’ve never known or been able to fathom a way that a win would feel both so happy and yet so bitter for both parties involved.

When I was watching this show in tandem with friends (who later dropped off because they didn’t like it) everyone but me wanted the free planets alliance to win. To be honest I was fairly neutral towards who won because peace was obviously preferable but Reinhard was such a compelling character for me with the ambition and relatively low standing background that I just had to side with him.

It’s kind of strange really because Reinhard is a dictator, the most powerful dictator who ever lived and dictatorships are notorious for abusing their people. It’s just that he is such a strong leader with the obvious interest in helping his people that I just don’t care about it. In contrast the democracy of the FPA is the most scumbag group of people I’ve seen, full of so much corruptness from investors that it’s not really a democracy at all. Since Reinhard has no current plans for marriage to continue his line it leaves me with the hope that he will change the system. He is just the kind of guy aware enough to see that his system could easily be abused so I’m secretly hoping for that to happen.

This is your last chance before I tell you who wins. Reinhard wins! He assumes control of both Phezzan and the FPA and it’s a great moment. Then you see that there is still over half of the show yet to go and it worries me a bit.

Just like most real wars the story doesn’t simply finish with a peace treaty, and this show is definitely going to prove that. I would ultimately prefer peace yet both sides seem to want to continue the conflict more. Reinhard wants to demolish the FPA and all its planets (even though it doesn’t make a lot of sense) and the heroes who were beaten are planning to rebel in roughly 5-6 years. It’s infuriating to see both sides not wanting to keep the peace!

I can sympathise with Reinhard a lot more, after all the threat of a revolt is quite high and reducing the chance of it makes me think that it could prove more beneficial in the long run. However I cannot sympathise with the losing side at all because it’s just a losing battle in my opinion. It took roughly two hundred years for one side to take over ½ of space. So since both half’s are already taken over it would likely take a much longer amount of time! I find it difficult to justify that level of fighting!

I believe that the benevolent dictator is the most efficient form of government yet unsustainable.  A person isn’t going to stay perfect forever and there is no guarantee in any way that the next person would be just as good. This is the only main conflict for the empire that I currently have. I’m looking forward to seeing how the show will deal with this idea.

I enjoyed season 2. I just hope season 3 won’t shake up the peace too much. I know it will, but for some reason I am more invested in the success and peace of the world than I am with watching an interesting story! Strange isn’t it?

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