Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” actually gives us new details about Vash the Stampede’s backstory that wasn’t in the original 1998 anime. In other words: the writers are actually filling in holes in canon instead of trying to change canon altogether. To me, this is what Orange should’ve done all along. Well, I guess it’s better late than never.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.”: Details
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” is the latest episode (you can read reviews for Ep. 1, Ep. 2, Ep. 3, Ep. 4, Ep. 5, Ep. 6, and Ep. 7 here) of this post-apocalyptic Space Western CGI anime series. Trigun Stampede is a reboot of the 1998 anime Trigun. Trigun, in turn, is the anime adaptation of the 1995 manga of the same name by Yasuhiro Nightow.
Unfortunately, just like with all the previous episodes of Trigun Stampede, we don’t know who’s responsible for making Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.”. All we know is production details for the anime in general. Orange (Land of the Lustrous, Beastars, Godzilla Singular Point) is still the animation studio behind this anime. Kenji Mutō is still the director, with Katsuhiro Takei producing. Tatsurō Inamoto, Shin Okashima, and Yoshihisa Ueda wrote for the anime; while Tatsuya Kato composed the music. “Tombi” by Kvi Baba is still the opening theme music, and “Hoshi no Kuzu α” (星のクズ α) by singer Salyu and composer Haruka Nakamura is still the ending theme music.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” features the voices of Tomoyo Kurosawa (Kristen McGuire in English dub) as young Vash the Stampede, Yumiri Hanamori (Megan Shipman in English dub) as young Millions Knives, and Maaya Sakamoto (Emily Fajardo in English dub) as Rem Saverem.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” premiered on February 25, 2023. You can watch this episode and all previous episodes only on Crunchyroll. You can also watch the original 1998 anime Trigun on Crunchyroll for comparison.
Warning: spoilers for Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” below. If you want to watch this fleshed out version of Vash’s backstory for yourself, then stop here and come back once you’ve also made a home among the people your twin brother tried so hard to kill.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.”: Plot Summary
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” does not actually pick up where we last left off in the previous episode. Instead, the story slingshots all the way back to the distant past. Specifically: just after Vash crash-lands on planet Gunsmoke and finds out that his brother Knives was the one who’d crashed the entire colonization fleet in a bid to murder all the humans. Apparently, it’s all due to Vash getting the authorization codes for the fleet for Knives without ever suspecting why Knives wanted them.
To be fair, Vash was just a kid at the time. He could’ve never suspected that his kid brother was a genocidal psychopath. Unfortunately, it doesn’t make Vash feel any less guilty about it. He runs away from Knives in a bid to commit suicide by desert. Fortunately for him, survivors from a crashed but intact Ship 3 rescue him and take him in. The survivors’ scanners immediately recognize Vash as a humanoid Plant. Their 2IC, Brad, is suspicious of Vash and thinks he’s a potential threat. Their leader, Lucida Leitner, though, only sees a little kid in trouble and in need of help. Thus, Vash stays with them as their guest. Albeit with handcuffs on at all times, but at least he has a place to live and meals every day. Even if he refuses to eat due to depression, but that’s a minor detail there.
Vash: The Plant Whisperer?
Vash’s daily tedium comes to an end when Ship 3’s electric Plant (Get it?) starts dying, and the crew have no idea why. Vash does, though, and after convincing the crew (mostly Lucida) to let him help, he does some kind of…psychic thing with the Plant that calms it down and heals it back to health. Vash had earlier claimed that he doesn’t have a Plant ability, but now it seems that’s not true and that his Plant ability is to, in fact, heal other Plants.
That sole ability makes Vash a hero to the survivors, especially once he starts traveling to other crashed ships to also heal their Plants. With the survivors asking questions and taking notes the entire time, it seems to suggest that Vash accidentally forms the entire basis behind Plant maintenance in the present day. Because of this, he gets his freedom, and Ship 3 even gives him his signature red jacket and offers to have the ship be his home. Finally, Vash has a place where he can belong again.
And then Brad finally repairs the black box for Ship 5: the ship Vash and Knives was on with Rem. He and Lucida discover that Knives was the one who crashed the entire fleet, and immediately suspect Vash intentionally handed over the codes despite him working with them for the past 5 years. Full of guilt once more, Vash sets off to deal with Knives once and for all, leaving only an apology note behind in Ship 3. Now full of guilt for having suspected Vash, Lucida sets off to get him back.
Meanwhile, Vash finds Knives in another crashed ship. Only, he’s with a couple of new cultist-like people, and the entire ship is filled with apparently dead Plants. Why? Well, that’s what we’ll presumably find out in the next episode of Trigun Stampede.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.”: The Good
The best thing about Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.” is that they were not trying to radically alter Trigun canon like they were doing in previous episodes. Instead, they take the holes in canon and fill them in. If they needed to slightly alter the hole to make the filling fit, that’s fine. It’s a lot better than trying to dig new holes altogether. Indeed, this is one of the best episodes of Trigun Stampede precisely because it fills in the holes immediately after Vash’s crash-landing on the planet Gunsmoke. We actually see him regain a family in the form of Ship 3, and find out where he got his red coat from. Now if only Orange had done this for the entire anime, then Trigun Stampede would be even better than what it is now. As it is though…
Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home.”: The Bad
Even though Meryl doesn’t appear in Trigun Stampede Ep. 8 “Our Home” for obvious reasons, it’s hard to forget how the writers butchered her character. Especially given how good this episode is. This episode should’ve been the point of the anime. The fact that Orange went out of their way to make Trigun Stampede a full-on AU just muddles things and alienates the fans of the original canon. Meryl Stryfe’s radically altered character (plus the complete deletion of Milly Thompson from the story) are the most glaring examples. It’s why I can’t give this episode a perfect score. The greatness of this episode just makes you remember the bad taste of Meryl.