Image Source: 876TV on YouTube
Eureka Seven: High Evolution 1 isn’t the only Eureka Seven anime to come out this year. The 2012 sequel anime Eureka Seven: AO actually got a new episode as well—a completely new final episode.
This weekend is the release of Eureka Seven: High Evolution 1 in Japan. The first third of the film is a completely new prequel story showing the events of the Summer of Love years before the start of Eureka Seven. But it’s not the only new Eureka Seven anime we got this year, there was also Eureka Seven: AO — Final Episode: One More Time — Road Don’t Slow Me Down.
Image Source: サミー株式会社 on Twitter
While Eureka Seven: AO ended its TV run back in 2013, a pachislot machine based on the anime was released by the Sammy Corporation earlier this year. And as a promotional tie-in to it, Sammy also released a new full episode of Eureka Seven: AO on its YouTube channel in five parts between January and March.
But this episode isn’t a side-story or clip show: it’s the true ending to the anime series.
[This article contains spoilers for Eureka Seven, Eureka Seven: AO, and Eureka Seven: AO — Final Episode: One More Time.]
Image Source: Netflix Japan on Twitter
At the end of Eureka Seven: AO, Ao absorbs a huge mass of Scub Coal Quartz into the Quartz Gun and fires it at every Secret in existence at once—erasing them completely from the timeline and altering history in a major way.
In the final two minutes of the anime (not including the credits) we learn that, due to the massive amount of Quartz used in his proximity, Ao and his AI companion, Truth, have found themselves unstuck in time in their mostly destroyed mecha. For two years, the pair apparently wander back and forth through this new timeline before returning to the present. And while this world may not know him—as it is likely he doesn’t exist here—Ao elects to try to a make a life in this new world that he created.
Final Episode: One More Time takes that 2 minute chunk and rewrites it into a full 25 minute episode showcasing Ao and Truth’s journey through time: what they did, how they were able to make it back to the present, and a bit of what happens after Ao lands on this new Earth.
And since the episode was sadly released without English subtitles attached, allow me to walk you through what each part of the episode is about while you watch it for yourself.
The first part of the episode explains the basic problem that Ao and Truth face. Like Eureka in the series proper, the two are unstuck in time. They have no way of knowing when or where they’ll appear—nor how long they’ll be stuck in limbo between jumps. Inside the heavily damaged Nirvash Neo, Ao is able to interact with objects normally. However, should he leave the cockpit at any of their stops, he will appear as an insubstantial ghost—able to talk with people but unable to touch anything.
Their first stop is the year 12005, where they witness the “first” Scub Burst in this timeline as the Scub Coral from Eureka’s timeline appears due to the events at the end of the original Eureka Seven. Ao welcomes it to the world and adds that he hopes they can become friends.
From there the pair jump to Iwato Island in 2015. There Ao meets the childhood version his best friend, Naru, coughing on the beach as she struggles to breathe thanks to the Scub Coral infection in her lungs. Ao tells the young Naru the secret that the teenage Naru learned in his original timeline: that if she learns to get along will the coral inside her they can live in symbiosis. Naru takes this to heart, finding that now, she can breathe with no trouble at all.
Of course, then, when Ao tries to touch her, his hand goes right through her, causing the child to run away in fear. Depressed at the reality of his situation, Ao departs with Truth on their next time jump.
Their next jump drops them near a Scub Burst-caused shipwreck in the Caribbean in 1981. Ao leaves the cockpit, once again becoming an insubstantial ghost. He finds the young version of one of his friends in the water, the girl he knew as “Elena“—but whose real name is Ellen. In his original timeline, Ellen was saved by Eureka and accidentally taken to the year 2020. However, in this new timeline without Secrets, no such help will come.
Taking him to be an angel, Ellen asks Ao to save her. And Ao, after musing that he doesn’t actually know her real name, says he can’t physically help, but he can cheer her on. She is less than thrilled by his “help” but it does give her the energy to start making her way in the direction of land. However, as she paddles away, he asks her for a favor.
Cut to the same area 39 years later after another Scub Burst-caused shipwreck. A mere 45 minutes after the disaster, rescue craft and drones arrive. On one such boat is the now middle aged Ellen. In the water, she finds a pink haired girl—the real Elena who died in Ao’s original timeline and whose identity was then stolen by Ellen. Ellen then explains to Elena that an Angel named Ao appeared to her 40 years ago and told her about this disaster—and Elena in specific. And while Ellen doesn’t know why Elena was singled out, she thinks that just as Ao helped Ellen and Ellen helped Elena, it is now Elena’s turn to help Ao.
It’s then we learn that the rescue ship is owned by Generation Bleu and that Ellen and Christophe (the President of Generation Bleu) have been planning for this day—and now that it has come, they can focus on rescuing Ao.
The third part of the episode takes place in Iceland in 2013 and shows the first meeting of Maggie and Maeve—members of Team Goldilocks in Ao’s original timeline. Maggie is a tourist, visiting from Hong Kong on her way to see the North Pole Light. Suddenly an odd wind reveals that Maeve is carrying a huge teddy bear. She explains that it’s a present for her soon to be born sister. The girls then realize that they both feel the name of the bear should be “Bruno“—the name of the large man in charge of Team Goldilocks in the original timeline.
With that, the baby, Chloe (the third member of Team Goldilocks), comes into the world and Maeve rushes in to meet her new sister. As Maggie crosses the street to meet up with her mother, she glances in the direction the strange wind came from and sees Ao in full pilot suit standing there. When she takes a second look, he is already gone, but Maggie has the feeling that she had met him somewhere before.
Set in 2027, in what Ao would call the present day, Generation Bleu’s Mama Hannah and her team in space detect an increase of Trapar Waves. They send a report to a now adult Maggie who identifies the Pole Light at Iwato Island as the point of their upcoming operation.
In Tokyo at the Generation Bleu headquarters, Rebecka, second in command of Team Pied Piper, demands a meeting with the president of the company—“both of them.” She explains that the operation is already underway to a thoroughly confused Fleur (now president of the company). Her father, Christophe appears and explains that everything Generation Bleu has done—all the battles fought and compromises made—has been for this day.
When asked if she remembers the boy with green hair, she flashes back to her own experience with a Scub Coral Blast. As her mother lays unconscious in the driver’s seat in the car after a crash. The young Fleur rolls down her window to see Ao looking at her fondly while the damaged Nirvash Neo floats behind him.
It is then revealed that Fleur’s partner pilot in this new timeline is the real Elena who was raised by Ellen as well as her biological mother after being saved from the ocean. But it’s not just Ellen and Fleur who have seen Ao. There are records from all across history, from paintings to video of the green haired boy. In fact, due to her own time traveling, world-sliding exploits, Eureka herself still visited this timeline. And while she did, she asked Team Pied Piper’s Chief Ivica to help the boy with green hair, Ao, when he next appeared.
Generation Bleu quickly discovered that Ao didn’t exist in the current world, even though several members had met him and been helped by him. They then surmised that he was being affected by the Quartz and its time travel properties—that he had become unstuck in time. And as his “friends,” it is up to them to save him with their ultimate plan: “Operation Astral Ocean.”
As the final part of the episode begins, Mama Hannah starts the operation by bombarding the Iwato Island Pole Light with three Quartz Guns. This in turn pulls a confused Ao and Truth from the timestream with Truth announcing that they have returned to 2027.
The various members of Generation Bleu outline the operation: that to reattach Ao to the present, they must use special warheads to cause a minor Scub Burst and cleanse the Quartz from him and the Nirvash Neo.
Christophe then explains why saving Ao is so important. It isn’t just that Ao has saved a few people here and there across time; he is sure that Ao somehow, someway saved the entire world. That’s why they have to get him back. Though, it’s not as if it won’t be dangerous. One wrong move and Fleur and Elena will be caught up in the burst and killed.
Of course, Ao and Truth know nothing of this plan. All they know is that two mecha—mecha likely piloted by those he called “friends”—are coming after them. Moreover, it’s likely that, on this Earth, no one—not even his past friends—know who he is. Thus starts the final dogfight of the series—and Fleur and Elena prove just as adept as their alternate timeline counterparts.
And as luck would have it, the warheads not only solidify the pair in this timeline, but also restore the Nirvash Neo as well. Thus, free from his aimless wandering through time, Ao decides to see what this new world he created has to offer—even though, as Truth puts it, “it’s a world without Ao.” Truth, on the other hand, decides to keep wandering through time and the two say their goodbyes.
But as Ao falls on his father’s old board toward the island he grew up on, Truth revises his previous statement: This isn’t a world without Ao, but rather, everything here is Ao’s world.
Landing clumsily on the beach, Ao finds himself covered in sand; crying at once again being able to touch the world outside of Nirvash Neo. And as he looks up, he sees Fleur and Elena waiting for him. Announcing that they know who he is and that they were saved by him, Ao breaks down into further tears of joy as the pair runs toward him.
Eureka Seven: AO — Final Episode: One More Time — Road Don’t Slow Me Down can be seen (without English subtitles) on YouTube.