So Senki Zesshou Symphogear is all over. As in, for good. The final season is in the books, and man, what an incredible ending it was–
–I stand corrected.
Symphogear taken as a whole was two things; An interesting techno-mechanical superhero show about
two three six seven girls fighting The Noise FIS Carol Danvers The Illuminati Adam Shem-ha. It was also a marketing vessel for the sale and distribution of album singles for its main cast. I can’t stress this last part enough because what you watched was basically the anime version of Avengers: Endgame, and we all know that superhero franchise was made to sell comic books and toys. It doesn’t matter how flim-flam or full-of-holes the story is, as long as that objective is satisfied, you’ll watch anything, you stupid clod.
But this last season was supposed to tie up all those loose ends on the way out. Questions like “What is the relationship between Tsubasa and her grandfather he alluded to in previous seasons?” “What is Miku’s role in everything since she too was purged from the original sin?” and more aptly “What is all this god stuff”?
Well it turns out that the thing Fine was trying to destroy in season one was the thing actually keeping Shem-ha in check from being able to control humanity. The Curse of Babel is basically the same as the biblical Tower of Babel, implying that The Custodians were de-facto gods who sealed humanity’s shared language in order to protect them from Shem-ha’s ability to take control of them all and use for nefarious purposes. The relics were all powers controlled by songs, a unifying language, converted into Symphogears by Fine while she possessed Ryoko Sakurai, whose goal was to destroy the moon and take control herself, before Shem-ha. All of the other antagonists desired this same end except Tsuaba’s
grandfather, who wanted to become Shem-ha. Taking control of Miku instead, Shem-ha initiated the plan to control humanity, and without Babel to stop it, what does the world do?
It’s difficult for me to really ascertain just what this show’s writers were attempting to do with the series from the start. Endgame seemed like a really good comparison point because up to the final season, each previous season was fairly self-contained with its own heroes and villains, but with tiny plot points that connect to the final big showdown between Shem-ha Thanos and The Symphovengers. Carol effectively played Iron Man here, sacrificing herself not only to help them win Miku back as the seventh and final piece of the puzzle, but also saving Elfnein from also burning her memories so as to continue her legacy. But if you were looking for them to really button up stories like Chris’ past, Tsubasa’s fucked up lineage, Maria’s reconciliation with her family, and other character-driven stories, that final scene with everyone’s force-ghost is as good as you’re going to get. Even the big reveal that Miku was the seventh and final gear user had minimal impact on the ending other than allowing them all to sing the big ol’
swan climax song to repair the world. Turns out, in the end, love or feelings or something is the shared language of the world for Hibiki and Miku, I guess? ¯_(ツ)_/¯
In the end, what you should enjoy about Symphogear is the fights, Hibiki’s Badass Moments of Badassitude, Stupid Sexy Chris, the moments when Maria isn’t useless, DMJii mixing the Top Ten DESS Hits of Today, and how Ninja Kira Yamato saves the fucking day out from under everyone all the fucking time. The highest points of this show is when it doesn’t take itself seriously as a vehicle for album sales and pays homage to old-school super robot shows or takes a slice-of-life break to humor Hibiki’s fondness for grabbing Chris’ tits or whatever she does in bed with Miku. This final season did have the best gear transformation scenes and attacks, and the final-form transforms were also simple and elegant compared to that bullshit dark mode slop from the previous seasons. I miss the two-songs-a-season angle they used to do with the first few seasons, but I think they were really wanting to push down that all-in song at the end.
Symphogear is the sort of show like when your company says they’re buying everyone lunch, but by the time you dig out from your mountain of work at your desk, all the good stuff has been taken and the rest turns out to be mostly salad and vegan-friendly options for the whole three people in your office who are of that persuasion. Enjoy listening to ten people rant about how great it was while you eat like a rabbit.