This blog has existed for just over 5 and a half years now. I myself have been blogging for over 7 years, having started on an older team site before jumping ship. I named this blog after this specific scene. Yet I’ve never actually written about the episode in question. It’s time to end that and end this 3 month journey back into this ridiculous anime. The final episodes of Code Geass…apart from Code Geass Akito the Exiled for which the third episode came out on home video recently which I plan to cover soon…and the other picture dramas and Nunnally in Wonderland spinoff OVA…and all the spinoff manga where Suzaku is a superhero or the story is set in the middle ages…or all the DS games…basically what I’m saying is Code Geass never ends! This trainwreck is not over yet.
There’s a real sense towards the end of R2 that the show is just desperately trying to clear up every plot point as quickly as possible. The show got a bit too ambitious for its own good and the final episodes tried to race through content which makes some of it feel awfully random and underexplained. Most of it still makes sense for Code Geass if we’re talking thematic consistency. Things like Schneizel though showing up as a random final villain for all of 2 episodes makes sense for what the show was building towards, but does end awfully quickly for something that was built up for so long.
The weird End of Evangelion-like world Emperor Fluffy wanted might seem to have come out of nowhere, babbling nonsense about the Sword of Akasha and killing god, but in terms of what Lelouch wanted it sort of made sense. Lelouch is fighting for those who don’t have power so they will have a better tomorrow. But he wants that better tomorrow to have nothing to do with looking back into the past. That’s a topic Code Geass has relentlessly hit throughout its run. The drug refrain that the Elevens take is so they can go back to a time when Japan was great. The soldier revolutionaries he has such contempt for wear old style Japanese military uniforms. A world in which you only live in your memories would then be exactly the kind of thing Lelouch would never want. It also allows us to tie up his whole dead mum thread, as clumsily as was tied up. To move on from the past, he had to move on from that. So having his mum be in on the End of Evangelion plan is about the only way they can tie that loop. Yeah it’s awkward as fuck but it works.
Schneizel’s plan is similar in that it creates a world Lelouch doesn’t want. It’s the eternal present, where nothing can progress because we all live in eternal fear of the giant dick-shaped fortress in the sky. Nobody can ever move on from that because it will always be there. Unlike Lelouch’s plan, which directs the hate towards something that has been defeated to be replaced by simply a symbol for hope and progress, the hate in Schneizel’s plan is something very tangible. Again the point might be clumsily made, but it makes sense for the themes Code Geass has been building towards. We would still live in the world where the strong have power over the weak. The strong in this case being Schneizel and his dick fortress. You only live by the will of those in power.
On the subject of Schneizel, my god is he the sexiest man imaginable. In particular it’s his laugh. It’s soft but genuine, and his whole body sways as his hair flops in front of his eyes and oh my Schneizel you would turn any man gay. Now if only I could remember how to spell your bloody name.
On the other hand, seeing Lelouch wear his stupid emperor hat would make any woman previously in love with the man seriously consider the wonderful world of lesbianism. I think what makes it is the stupid little cheap-ass green crystal dangling from the side of it, like some sort of old toilet flusher. You pull it and water starts spraying out the bottom and all over Lelouch’s stupid face. And to think Kallen kissed the guy while he was wearing it. Oh dear Kallen, I’m not sure I am on board with your taste in men’s clothing. Granted it was the last time you figured you were ever going to see the guy and you had to take your chance while you were there. I imagine it was painful for her for her first time kissing Lelouch to have to be when he’s wearing that abomination. Sorry Kallen, you should just go for Gino instead. He’s clearly into you and it’s not like he’s doing anything else worthwhile. He sure as hell isn’t contributing to the story.
It wasn’t quite “kill all the Japanese” but hey, this twist was still pretty cool. Much like Euphemia, I’ve had a bit of a change of heart towards Nunnally. To stand up to the one person that has taken care of her all her life was a big decision for her to make. The person that meant the world to her. Particularly as someone blind and crippled, having someone like that to rely on and then having to turn on them is a tough decision. She’s quite strong-willed in general. Heck, Lelouch couldn’t turn on Nunnally. He was only able to when it was clear she had the same end goals as himself, so he could geass her without soiling his conscious. Not that his conscious was particularly clean to begin with, but that’s part of the point with the ending and why I am personally convinced Lelouch is dead.
So now we’re getting to it. The ending. There’s an running thread throughout the show that Lelouch has become a devil. I believe I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s what makes him different from someone like Light from Death Note. Or, to keep it to Code Geass, what makes him different from Schneizel. He isn’t trying to become a god, because a god implies something positive. The idea that you are a force for good in the world. Lelouch never thought that. The change specifically happened during the “kill all the Japanese” part. There’s a neat little piece of dialogue between him and Kagura where he says you don’t want to get close to him because he’s the devil.
Lelouch, in my mind, is dead not necessarily because of plot reasons. Forget all of that nonsense. Lelouch is dead because the story works better thematically from that standpoint. He can’t go on living like the devil. It defeats the purpose of his story. He can’t continue in this world because then he would be like the people he fought against. His redemptive arc ends with him dying. He said before he got the Geass that he was basically living a lie. A fake life anyway and that he only felt alive once he got the Geass. The goal to destroy Britannia was his life. Once he does that, he goes back to not living again.
The theory behind why Lelouch could survive in the first place is because he inherited C.C’s code, therefore becoming immortal. In the same way Emperor Fluffy took V.V’s code, Lelouch took C.C’s because he fulfilled her promise. Namely that she isn’t alone anymore. There are more than a couple of problems with that. Nunnally probably would have noticed that her brother wasn’t dead when he fell from the stage when he was executed. I doubt all the people at that parade would have ignored the fallen emperor’s body either, so much so that none of them noticed he got up and left. On the other hand, C.C’s final lines are about how the power of kings means that you are doomed to remain alone for eternity, but that “maybe that’s not right after all, isn’t that right Lelouch”. Soooooo who could she be talking to. It must be Lelouch right!?!?!?!
Except of course it isn’t. It’s just the writers being massive trolls and throwing that one dumb bone out to make people go nuts over creating theories why he could be alive. That’s why it’s so marvelous. It’s the Inception spinning top. It doesn’t really matter whether he’s alive or dead, but since you want that question answered, we will dangle the possibility that the alternative is true in front of you to get that reaction from you. It’s marvelous and I fucking loved it, because of course the inevitable happened. Fandom went fucking nuts over the idea that Lelouch could still be alive. Fandom latched onto a dumb little teaser troll line right at the end and created tons of theories around it. That’s why I named the blog after the line. Because it might be just a silly little closer in the show, but it only becomes fun once you read everyone’s view of that scene.
I really, really enjoyed this rewatch. I was afraid Code Geass wouldn’t hold up, but it shockingly did and in areas I didn’t expect it to. The bombast wouldn’t be anywhere near as effective without the script to match and that’s where Code Geass truly shined, albeit more so the first season than the second. I highly recommend watching the English dub as I did this time around. It may sound like blasphemy to watch Geass without the glorious engrish, but the script is so fantastic in the English version that it swung my opinion completely. Some characters I gained newfound appreciation for, such as Euphemia and Cornelia. Twists that were impactful on the original viewing were still fantastic if only for the anticipation in waiting for them to happen. If anything I think I might like Code Geass even more now. Yeah I picked the name of this blog mostly on a whim for an anime I happened to really like at the time, but naming the blog after this dumb cartoon meant it did gain a bit more personal significance for me. It’s hard to distinguish favourites when it comes to anime because it’s all arbitrary at some point, but if someone were to ask me what my favourite anime was, I would probably now say Code Geass.
Thank you for reading along with me. If you enjoyed reading along even a fraction as much as I enjoyed writing these, then you had a mighty fine time. I hope those of you who did watch along either enjoyed returning to the show, or even watched it for the first time and were spoiled completely by all the commenters. I particularly would like to hear from those people, if only to hear your reactions when you went “oh shit, so THAT’S who the cart driver is”.