It All Falls Apart
Episode 25: Sorry Kira & Co. I'm completely with Athrun in this argument. You wanna do something about ORB being in the Alliance? Take Cagalli back to ORB and figure it out. Wanna know who actually ordered the hit on Lacus? Go figure it out, stop sitting on your butts and just reacting to stuff. Their first intervention might be a little excusable but they need to be a little proactive here. Tragically, that turns out to not be the case. In a rare moment of introspection, Shinn is the one who comments on the Alliance/Blue Cosmos's hypocrisy that Coordinators are an abomination yet Living CPUs are perfectly acceptable.
Episode 26: Oh boy, here we go with Shinn and Stella. So Amuro does something wrong and gets thrown in the brig. Kamille does something wrong and gets Brightslapped™. Heero does something wrong and tries to commit suicide, but when Shinn does something wrong... he gets a slap on the wrist? Lol.
In any case, as much as I facepalm at the Archangel Group's Big Plan being to send just the pop singer and the bionic man into space, Andy Cosplaying as Meer's manager was pretty hilarious. Also, you'd think these ZAFT guys would notice that the real Lacus is dressed much more conservatively than Meer and also has a smaller chest?
Episode 27: Once again a build up episode. Honestly I think the writers just don't really know what to do with the Archangel beyond having it not stray far from the Minerva characters. Hey, is that the Blast Silhouette? Has Shinn used that at all up till now? I can't remember...
Episode 28: Let's have a fight scene! While executed well in a technical sense, this battle still has things that annoy me, although it was nice to see Shinn demonstrate some actual tactics in his defeat of Auel. Rey and Luna's ZAKU's get wrecked so they can upgrade as well as Athrun's Saviour. I almost cried, that suit was so pretty and Athrun lost it purely due to the demands of the plot. Cagalli cries some more and it was darkly amusing to see even the ORB grunts calling her and the Archangel-gumi out on their bullcrap.
Todaka's death was bitterly ironic and well done. I wonder if Shinn ever finds out that Todaka was the commanding officer of the Takemikazuchi?
And of course the best way to follow up this action-packed episode? CLIPSHOW!
Episode 29: I skipped this one, of course. Yes I know it's the famous "Ghost Chess" episode but I really don't want to see SEED flashbacks for the bajillionth time and they don't really tell you anything truly insightful about Durandal and Talia's relationship, beyond the fact that she left him 'cuz she wanted kids (which makes her end in episode 50 all the more stupid.)
Episode 30: Ah yes, here we are. Shinn's crowning moment of stupid, which totally ruins his crowning moment of awesome four episodes later. What can i say that hasn't already been said? Why would you trust the promise of an enemy soldier? A soldier who wears a dark-colored mask no less. Why would trust the promise of someone who works for the same organization that created Stella in the first place?
Also, Cagalli's crying infecting all those other people is annoying.
Episode 31: And as we see, Neo almost immediately breaks his promise and shoves Stella into the Destroy Gundam. Congrats Shinn, you're idiot. But you don't know that do you, because HQ letting you off the hook just infuses your ego more, eh? Athrun mopes and Kira & Co. are once again sitting around, waiting for something to happen, although I do like the interactions Kira has been having with Murrue. There wasn't much of that in SEED, so I'm glad it's here.
Episode 32: While this episode was big and dramatic and the struggle against the Destroy is well done (it's always nice to see Super Kira flustered) I can't feel much for Shinn when Stella dies. It's kinda his fault after all.
Episode 33: Again can't feel much here. It's pretty obvious Shinn's using her as an expy for his sister but I just can't get past his misguided rage. I do feel that part of that rage, however, is that once again he's feeling powerless, just like when his family died.
ZAFT gears up for its LOGOS campaign with Durandal's little speech. Gotta admit, the guy's a masterful manipulator and a lot of people swallow it hook, line and sinker. Though I wonder why more people in the PLANTs and ZAFT didn't think, "well hey, isn't it a little strange that up till now the Chairman has been saying that we'll only fight if we have to and now he suddenly wants us to go after these LOGOS guys?"
Episode 34: At last! Caught up! Not a bad episode but full of dichotomies for me. On the one hand, it's nice to see Super Kira get his butt kicked by Shinn and his planning, along with Rey. On the other, his rage is so laughably misguided that I can't take him seriously.
Talia shows her quality by trying to get the Archangel to surrender before she's forced to destroy it. Athrun takes a break from moping to get pissed that they're attacking the Archangel. Realy, I think he's actually angry that Kira and Cagalli didn't follow his advice and go back to ORB because something like this was bound to happen eventually. They've attacked the ZAFT flagship twice now; did they really think ZAFT would let that go, even if it wasn't the secret desire of Durandal to get rid of them?
Also, they confirm that Neo is Mu, which was only a surprise if you're four.