Yes, we know that Vash is the star of the show, even in Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity”. However, this is also the episode where Meryl finally has her long overdue day in this anime. We even see why it is that Orange’s writers wrote her the way they did throughout the entire anime. It even gives us hope for her during what little of the anime appears to be left.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity”: Details
Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity” is the latest episode (you can read reviews for Ep. 1, Ep. 2, Ep. 3, Ep. 4, Ep. 5, Ep. 6, Ep. 7, Ep. 8, and Ep. 9 here) of this sci-fi post-apocalyptic Space Western CGI anime series. This anime 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, who was responsible for Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity” is just as unknown as all the previous episodes. All we know is the production staff responsible for Trigun Stampede in general. Kenji Mutō is still the director, with Katsuhiro Takei still producing. Tatsurō Inamoto, Shin Okashima, and Yoshihisa Ueda are still writing for the anime; and Tatsuya Kato is still composing the music for it.
Speaking of music, “Tombi” by Kvi Baba is still the opening theme song for Trigun Stampede. Likewise, “Hoshi no Kuzu α” (星のクズ α) by singer Salyu and composer Haruka Nakamura is still the ending theme song.
Warning: spoilers for Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity” below. If you want to finally watch Meryl have her day for yourself, then stop here and come back after you’ve seen her first significant character development in the entire anime series.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity”: Plot Summary
Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity” in a way does pick up where we last left off in the previous episode. Since Knives decided to kidnap Meryl and Roberto and take them to JuLai City, then logically, Vash and Nicholas must also head to JuLai City…which is where they were going anyways. Not surprisingly, Vash and Nicholas discover that they’re both wanted men in the city for the stolen Plants. Complete with Vash taking the blame for the destruction of Jeneora Rock, no less. Fortunately, they are both able to evade the city’s military police (including that idiotically murderous captain) and flee into the sewers.
Meanwhile, Meryl and Roberto are still stuck in Knives’ place, which also turns out to be a lab run by Dr. Bill Conrad. Conrad reveals to them that all of his experiments with humans (including E. G. Bomber, Nicholas, and Livio) are actually in order to make a posthuman race that’s capable of surviving the harsh environment of Nomans Land without food or water. Unfortunately, the closest he ever got was humans who could regenerate from nearly any wounds using potions, so that was a no-go. So instead, Conrad decides to research making human-Plant hybrids, including that creepy girl from Ep. 3.
The (Re)Appearance of Elendira the Crimsonnail?
Elendira turns out to be her name (apparently in reference to the original Elendira the Crimsonnail from the original Trigun anime), and she, unfortunately, turns out to be violently psychotic. All because Meryl had the audacity to feel sorry for her. Thus, Meryl and Roberto end up running for their lives against a human-Plant hybrid who can summon nails out of nowhere and fling them at high speeds. Meryl and Roberto end up being cornered in the elevator room waiting for the said elevator to arrive, forcing them to play a game of lethal dodgeball with Elendira in the meantime.
When the elevator does arrive though, it brings reinforcements in the form of Vash and Nicholas, who’d just happened to choose that time to go up the elevator. As Nicholas engages with Elendira to distract her (with her being familiar with him as a fellow test subject), Meryl and Roberto use that distraction to flee down the elevator while Vash heads off toward Knives. Unfortunately, in the elevator, Roberto collapses and reveals that he has a very mortal wound from a nail stuck in him after taking one for Meryl. A dying Roberto leaves Meryl his 2-shot derringer and his hip flask before passing on. Meryl, now filled with determination and armed with her iconic derringer at last, stops the elevator and goes back up to face her destiny.
Meanwhile, Vash finally faces off against Knives. Except that Knives cuts the fight before it even begins by dropping Vash into a deep pit he’d built into the floor of his room beforehand. Even worse, the pit leads to a fluid-filled chamber where Knives promises to “remake” Vash into his ideal brother. What does he mean? Well, we’ll just have to find out in the next episode of Trigun Stampede.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity”: The Good
Yes, weirdly enough, I would argue that the death of Roberto de Niro is a good thing for Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity”, and for the anime as a whole. I’ve always wondered why Orange’s writers wanted to insert their OC into the story, and now it makes sense. Roberto is meant to be the mentor-type figure who dies to further the pupil’s character development, like with Luke Skywalker and Old Ben Kenobi. I guess this mean Trigun Stampede is something of a prequel AU of the original canon. With this being Meryl’s origin story, so to speak.
Interestingly, with Meryl now having her derringer back, there’s hope for her now. We might even see the start of Meryl becoming more like her old self in 1998. All she needs is about 20 more derringers and a coat to hold them all, and she’ll be alright. Heck, there’s even hope that we might see Milly again in the last episode. Maybe Milly will be the new newbie as Meryl takes on her own newbie in a continuing cycle. Well, one can dream.
The revelation that the blond girl is actually Elendira in Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity” is a nice touch. True, it gives her a completely different backstory than her canon Crimsonnail self, thus making her as much of an OC as Meryl. In Elendira’s case though, I would argue that this is a good change. It actually gives her a reason to be so enamored of Knives. Knives effectively raised/indoctrinated her from birth in this AU. So it makes sense why she’s so devoted to him.
Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity”: The Bad
At this point, my only complaint about this anime is the lack of Milly Thompson. However, Trigun Stampede Ep. 10 “Humanity” gives me hope that she will appear at some point in the near future. Given that this anime seems to be a 12-13 episode anime, it means that we might only have a few weeks to go before we finally get to see what she looks like in CGI. Hopefully. Cross your fingers, everyone.