Season 1, Episode 4: Gateway Shuffle

March 3, 2010

11:20 PM on a Monday, class at 11 AM. What could I possibly do now OTHER than watch another episode of my favorite show, Spike and the Bebop’s?

This viewing will be the first time I decide not to re-listen to the intro song, only because I plan on actually trying to sleep tonight.
I thought it might also be worth mentioning, that I’ve been doing every blog as I’ve been watching the show, so on the first watch is when the writing occurs, each “paragraph” being written on each time I pause it. Just thought I’d throw that out there.

This episode begins with Faye, strangely enough. She’s the first “villain” thus far to make an appearance that lasts longer than one episode. Well, she’s floating through space on her ship that’s run out of fuel. What an amazingly uninteresting scene.

We’re quickly shuffled into the next scene where Spike and Jet are at some kind of crazy space-shuttle that appears to be a diner, and while nothing of importance happens, Spike is there. And I have to mention any scene where Spike is there, because he is a godlike character.

Seems there is some importance to this apparently, because while Jet is putting on his fancy face-scanner glasses to scan if the person they’re spying on is indeed the person they’re after, we’re cut to a scene with an older woman having lunch with four younger men. She calls them all sons, and they call her mother (although it looks pretty clear that they probably have no relation), and when the guy that Jet is spying on gets loud, they come over and pull out their guns and kill him. Well, not just him, everyone other than Spike and Jet. One of the rather funny parts of this scene is when they are shooting the place up with their sub machine guns; you can see Spike reaching from under the table to get his cup that gets blown up by a bullet, hurting Spike. What, you didn’t laugh? Well I thought it was funny, and that’s what’s important.

So the four men are scurrying away with the woman, and for some reason the men are wearing Rat masks; the group claims to be some sort of environmental association that kills people, how deliciously…I don’t know if Ironic works here, but I’m going with it. Apparently, their “mother” has a huge reward on her head, much bigger than the guy Jet and Spike were originally after; and only 6 minutes into the episode, she’s already been caught by Spike who’s holding a gun to her head. I’m sure there’s going to be a large amount of twist and turns from here on out.

Well, we’re thrown back into a short scene with Faye, where it continues from her last scene. She spotted a broken ship floating near her, and went to check on it- apparently there was a barely alive man inside and he asked her to take the case he had and bring it to something called the “ISSP” and he also told her not to open it. I doubt she won’t open it. I’d open it. I’d also probably check the guy’s pockets for cash. Oh yeah judge, judge. He’s floating in space! And he’s dead! No one’s going to find him, and if they do how will they even know he had a wallet and I looked through it?

Apparently, the older woman is the leader of a group of environmentalists called the Space Warriors. They had at once been a peaceful organization until she had taken over and then they decided to start killing people. They also apparently have a fondness for the Sea Rat, which explains the Rat masks from earlier.

Well, here’s the twist I was already expecting. Apparently the bounty on the woman’s head was removed just a day ago. I know I’ve been watching too much Robot Chicken since once that twist occurred I was expecting a clay figure of M. Night Shyamalan to appear on the screen and say “what a twist!”

Quick scene back to Faye, who’s decided to open the case, big surprise isn’t it? I know I was expecting it, and probably would’ve done the same.

Turns out the four young men had done some sort of blackmailing to the government, making them remove the bounty on their “mother.” What a twist!

Hah, another twist! This episode’s full of them. Faye is sending out a distress signal to the nearest ship, and guess what ship it is? It’s the Bebop! Oh how delightful! Maybe for once the bebop crew might not fail at a capture. It’s strange though, so far they’ve failed every capture and yet they somehow are able to go gambling, eat at fancy restaurants, and afford gas for their ship. There’s something missing here about the way they make money.

Well, they take Faye in and once again she’s restrained. That money she stole from the last episode, she lost it all in gambling, not only that but the object she found in the briefcase earlier apparently has something to do with the older woman they’ve captured, because upon sight of it she became somewhat shocked.

So now we have some conversation going about the bounty between Jet’s friend and Jet himself. The bounty was called off because an entire planet called Ganamead (or something of the sort) is being held hostage by the Space Warriors, who have a virus that’s designed to only kill humans and leave the rest of the environment intact. Problem is no one seems to know where the virus is. Could it be that the virus is held within that small capsule object that Faye pulled out of the briefcase and for the last 3 minutes Spike has been trying to break open?

* Possible Spoiler alert*

It probably is. I don’t know yet though, I’ll see just as soon as I un-pause.

Well, sucks to be the Bebop crew. Turns out they have to let her go, because even though they have the leader of the entire group in their hands, they don’t know where the virus is. As this is happening though, you get to see Spike shoot the container containing the capsule, and break it, but the capsule remains unopened. This episode’s moving a little slower than the rest, but at least its keeping my interest. So, they hand her back over to her Space Warrior crew.

Upon her return to the ship, she decides to make contact with the leader of Ganamead, with whom she talks about her demands (in exchange for them not unleashing the virus upon the entire planet.) This is where it gets interesting and I realize that maybe a short detail about the virus is in order; well the virus is specifically designed to attack the 2% of the human DNA that isn’t the same as monkey DNA. This virus changes that 2% into monkey DNA and turns the human into a monkey.

Well then, the Space Warriors have decided to release the virus, named Monkey Business, upon Ganamead and upon doing so the planet reinstated their bounty on her head, lucky for Spike and Jet she’s near enough for them to go catch her again, unfortunately though they have to stop the virus first or else no one will be able to pay their reward. Yeah, not because they want to save the entire planet, but because they want to ensure they get paid for catching her.

Faye is making another triumphant return here, as she escapes her restraints and gets into her ship. Best of all is that as Spike tries to blow up the Monkey Business bomb, it splits into three missiles and he can only hit two, but Faye (apparently just as money hungry as the Bebop crew) offers to help them blow up the last missile if she gets 60% of the reward.

So here’s the big climax, a bit lackluster and it’s definitely going to bring down the score of this episode. The last missile releases nearly 100 smaller missiles, which Faye can’t handle, Jet’s friend informs him that since the missiles are travelling through hyperspace (it’s some kind of portal system), they’re going to close it. Problem is, Spike and Faye are still in there. So, as expected as this could possibly be, Spike and Faye get out right before it closes and the missiles are all trapped in.

Ok, never mind what I just said, something very small just happened that kind of brought up the score and equaled out the loss. After they escape from Hyperspace, Faye freaks out as she notices all the tiny warheads are still flying through space, but they just pass through her ship as if they were ghosts. Well, get this, Jet says:

“Didn’t you pay attention in your high school physics class? Matter that gets enclosed in hyper space can be viewed normally by the naked eye…but of course it can never interact with the matter on this plane of reality.”

Genius, pure genius.

Seems that our Space Warrior crew were also still in hyperspace after releasing the bomb, and apparently they are stuck in it. Also, she stole the capsule spike had when he wasn’t looking, and after the ship makes a sudden stop, it flies out of her pocket and breaks against the wall. That’s all for the Space Warriors, but not the episode. We’re back on the Bebop and Faye has decided that she’s going to stay with them, and she’s going to go take a shower. Spike doesn’t want her staying, and as he goes to tell her, she beats him up off screen. Oh spike, you oaf.

This episode gets a 3.5/5. The soundtrack wasn’t shown off yet again, but this time the characters didn’t even get any more developed. It was already established in the previous episode that Faye was just a whiney character who wanted money, and I’m not really too happy with her joining the Bebop crew. She’s going to steal camera time from my precious Spike. However, I am somewhat pleased to know that since the entire show is about the criminals that these bounty hunters chase and the past connected to those criminals, we finally get to see a little about the actual Bebop past. Jet showed that he use to work with some kind of military crew in the previous episode, and now he’s showing some of his past, explaining that when he use to work on Ganamead, he noticed some of the illegal eye drops him and his partner confiscated went missing, obviously blackmailing his ex-partner into telling him the information about the Ganamead events. I’m still waiting on back story to Spike more than for anyone else, and I’m having trouble understanding how they are making the money to stay alive. Like I said earlier, they keep losing their bounty, as they did this time. How are they possibly making a living? Now they’ve got Faye in the ship with them it’s making even less sense.


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