Ergo Proxy Episode 12: When You’re Smiling (Hideout)

Meep! Welcome to Anime Rants. It’s time for another Ergo Proxy episode review and analysis. It’s hard to believe we are already halfway through this 23-episode series. This episode is pretty simple, so the review is nice and concise. Let’s rant!


Episode Synopsis

Now that she finally met Vincent, Re-L demands answers to the mystery of the proxies. However, she is unable to believe it when she hears that Vincent himself is a proxy. Unsure of what to do, Re-L and Iggy follow Pino and Vincent for a little while until they reach the ruins of a dome city overgrown with lichen and moss. The area looks like a giant cave. Here, Re-L debates shooting Vincent with one of the FP-ray bullets, since that will prove he is a proxy. But since that would also kill him if he was a proxy, Re-L is indecisive.

When Vincent wakes up and finds Re-L sitting on the side of his bed, he takes the chance. He confesses his love to her. Re-L kisses him, but only to distract him so she can grab the gun she dropped. Just then, they both notice there is a stranger in the ship. A mysterious child-like Autoreiv was there, stealing supplies. It escaped. Afterward, Re-L tells Iggy that she plans to stay with Vincent until she learns the whole truth. This is a huge disappointment to Iggy, who only wants to return to Romdeau as fast as possible.

Meanwhile, Pino explores the overgrown cave and encounters the thief Autoreiv from before. It appears that it cannot speak. And it isn’t alone. With the Autoreiv is a huge, ogre-like proxy with an aggressive look to it. Pino runs away screaming, which alerts Vincent. He transforms into Ergo Proxy to battle the giant aggressor. Both Iggy and Re-L are able to witness the transformation, so they now believe him. As Ergo fights the enemy, Re-L again debates shooting him. However, she ends up shooting the enemy proxy rather than Vincent. The FP-rays in the bullet successfully kill the big proxy. The childlike Autoreiv is injured, but it escapes alone into the wild.

Re-L explains to Iggy that it would be counterproductive and illogical to kill Vincent, at least right now. She will instead travel with him until the mysteries are solved. However, she says that one day, she will probably use her last FP-ray bullet on Vincent, so he had best stop talking about loving her. At this point at least, she doesn’t return his feelings. When Re-L orders Iggy to take the dead proxy back to Romdeau, Iggy adamantly disagrees. Re-L orders him nevertheless, still not realizing he already has the Cogito virus. Iggy acknowledges the order but is clearly angry and upset. That’s where the episode leaves off.


Discussion

Iggy’s Feelings

Iggy expresses himself much more in this episode than he has before. The last time we saw him, the concerns he expressed were practical (getting fuel for their ship). But now there is definitely an emotional component, too. At every turn, he’s talking about wanting to go back to Romdeau. Iggy is a peaceful soul who doesn’t want Re-L in any danger. He would be happy if Re-L went back to Romdeau and lived happily after with Daedalus while he served them both. Iggy has a vision of what life should be like for himself and Re-L, and now that vision is crumbling.

In addition, Iggy is rightfully upset that Re-L has not noticed the change in him. He isn’t a mindless slave anymore. Now he has a mind and a heart just like any human. Re-L pays next to no attention to him. It must be incredibly hard on Iggy to not have any gratitude or validation even though he is actively choosing to remain her attendant. Iggy is the kind of person who hates conflict, but bottles everything up, only to explode later. At this point, he’s a ticking time bomb.

Vincent’s Love

It has been obvious for some time that Vincent, in his deep loneliness has fallen in love with Re-L. However, I found myself surprised with his bold confession. Vincent is usually nonconfrontational and timid. Now, there’s nothing wrong with a bold confession using words. In fact, it’s very refreshing. But I’m not sure what he was thinking when he pulled Re-L down into the bunk and held himself above her. I mean. That may not be worthy of being shot, but most girls in those circumstances would be alarmed and on the defensive. It’s not like these two have any personal trust built up. I know Vincent wasn’t trying to be a jerk and wasn’t going to do anything more, but that was still a stupid thing to do.

Anyway, I am interested in the relationship between these characters, and I want Vincent to be happy. So I ship them. But they have very different personalities and ways of handling things, so it’s probably going to be a very rough road for them. Things are certainly starting badly with Re-L promising to one day shoot Vincent. But knowing Vincent, he will only fall more in love with Re-L by spending time with the strong and unusual girl.

The Cave Proxy

(The cave Proxy’s companion autoreiv)

I decided to include my speculations about the proxy in the overgrown caves. The fandom wiki at one point says it was a proxy whose dome city was overgrown. At another place, the wiki calls it a vagrant proxy, or one who wanders from place to place scrounging up food and begging. While both are possible, I think the first explanation makes the most sense. The lichen and moss covered cave system is the ruins of the dome where this proxy was once the master. I think that for some reason, the dome city collapsed, perhaps due to the Cogito Virus. Everyone died. The cave proxy then lost the better part of its mind do to all the death an destruction. It eventually became more like a wild, aggressive beast than a proxy.

However, the cave proxy was not completely alone. I think the Autoreiv that accompanies it was the last survivor of the ruined dome city. It’s likely that the proxy and the Autoreiv (who is almost definitely infected with Cogito) formed a bond. During the fight between the cave proxy and Ergo Proxy, you can see the former become enraged after the Autoreiv is damaged. The Autoreiv got damaged in the first place because it tried to interfere with the fight– perhaps in an attempt to calm its giant companion. My last speculation is that the surviving but damaged Autoreiv wishes to kill the ones responsible for killing his proxy friend. In that case Re-L had better watch out.


That wraps up today’s episode review. Thanks so much for reading, and I’ll see you next time! šŸ™‚

2 thoughts on “Ergo Proxy Episode 12: When You’re Smiling (Hideout)

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