Suzaku Hero of the Soldaten (Long post about why Suzaku is not evil)

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Making Lulufags cry the most unmanly of tears. I like that.

So Stripey posted an editorial regarding Suzaku, I would have posted it this there but this ended up being over 2,695 words long. The universal response of Lu-Qaeda (Lovers of Lulu) was pretty much along the lines of Suzaku being a tool, selling out his friend, being a traitor, etc. Most interestingly of all was the term “moralfag” where Suzaku is a contradiction for his holding of the moral high ground while serving an Evil Empire. First off let me be blunt we are all moralfags at one level or another it is the lot of humans ever since God cast us out because Adam and Eve were dip shits. As humans we pretend to be decent people but oh we are capable of cruelty beyond measure and have the ability to justify what we do. There are few among us who have no skeletons in our closets yet most of us would consider our selves by and large law abiding citizens when ever we find that we are in agreement with the law. As a soldier in the service of the American Empire one of the most vilified and hated empires in the world I am acutely aware of what it means to be in Suzaku’s shoes.

Also please from now on keep Iraq out of this…use a real colonial war like the Boer Wars for Pete’s sake. Any post mentioning Iraq will hence forth be deleted Jarmel and wait 321 get a pass for lack of warning.

Suzaku suffers from trying to do the right thing, he doesn’t want to pile on the death toll yet the very nature of his profession demands that his enemies must be slain. In this regard he suffers the moral dilemma that every conscientious soldier faces as long as their nation has a habit of sending them to lands far and wide. I do not expect Impz and his Singaporean conscript brothers to understand. They are not in the business of invading other people nor have they achieved status of Great Satan to illicit the ire of terrorists in the Middle East. As such Suzaku will kill people because that’s what soldiers do, but even I have reservations about killing needlessly for the sake of killing. I do not think that this makes me and Suzaku evil, but rather morally ambiguous. One day I can find my self doing a search and rescue, or providing humanitarian aid. On another I might find myself at an ECP under attack and firing bullets that kill people at people, or end up on a boat filled with refugees with the unhappy task of having to turn them away from American shores (most of these refugees will never set foot on American soil even if they are rescued only to repatriated later). Here is the rather intriguing contradiction, my profession demands that I perform good and evil acts; am I therefore evil or am I just? I prefer to think that most US soldiers regardless of branch and rate are human, capable of both great deeds and great crimes. It should come as little surprise that atheism is generally a rarity for those who serve. Perhaps we are being somewhat hypocritical in asking God to forgive us in light of what we are asked to do for volk and fatherland and if so what of those people who have asked us to kill and turn away refugees? If democracy is the prevailing system in most First World Nations then does not the electorate share the sins committed by their militaries?

Is it so wrong to try and do the right thing even if you are asked to do horrible things over the course of your life? I doubt there are many who can claim to do only good deeds; these same people will profess to be decent people who never want to hurt anyone. Nevertheless they do hurt other people whether they know it or not. Should these people then embrace their dark nature and only perpetuate evil? Lulu has done terrible things under the aegis of creating happy land for Nunnally and avenging his mother. Suzaku has by and large killed only in the line of duty. Suzaku’s victims are for the most part armed terrorists, while Lulu’s victims encompass, both Britannians and Japanese, both military and civilian. Suzaku has only killed those who are capable of fighting back, yet he’s the tool. This throwing around of the label moralfag is to me a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

For Suzaku to be the hateful traitor that he is we must assume that Japan was just and awesome before the invasion by big bad Britannia. Judging by the lack of high tech rubble and the casus belli for the invasion being Japan’s OPEC like activities, I do not think that Japan was a bastion of justice. For them to have alienated their local neighbors and any potential allies before the war tells me that Japan was probably still xenophobic, capable of immense national arrogance by going at it alone, and unscrupulous for ripping people off on energy. It seems that their military funding was cut allowing for technological inferiority. So with the huge stash of energy money and a fourth rate military, I suspect some one was dipping into the state coffers. Granted that the rubble looks circa 1990s, it would also seem that public works were not much of a concern to the previous government. Given the general apathy of those in the ghettoes Japan can pretty much stay dead. It’s always those nationalists and Black Knights stirring up trouble as they bravely hide behind unarmed Japanese that gets them killed. So who is the bigger traitor the guy trying to earn some collective respect while killing off those trouble makers or those Japanese who are fighting for “justice,” though you never asked for it, from behind the cover of unarmed Japanese?

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Li- tool of the Japanese and traitor to the Han (current standing – Wang Jingwei level loser), wielder of Anglachel. Suzaku- Tool of the Empire, wielder of Narsil. Lulu- Tool of C.C., wielder of…the tit grabber?

Why is nationalism clearly the preferable way of things when Japan could have joined China’s Federation? In an age of grand alliances and EU why is the notion of Empire that hateful? Empire did bring new anti-earth quake technology to Japan as well as a much more modern city. Unlike old Japan women are more or less equal (at least when it comes to the slaughter) and the underclass no longer comprises of zainichi Koreans, Ainu, Ryukyuans, formerly disenfranchised Japanese, and burakumin. Instead those who do not work do not eat. Class is no longer determined by strictly by birth but by ambition under the new order. Within the new order one can rise in social standing provided you have few scruples and are capable. So what if the Britannians yell at their number auxiliaries? Like any military worth its salt the commander is going to yell at every one, with nary a please. Britannia is not in the business of forcing their rules on any body, rather you play their game you or you get to sit it out and be poor.

We assume that Charles is going to go back on his word, but as long as there is war Charles is going to have some use for Suzaku and Charles is going to have to give rewards to his more capable minions. Charles is not stupid he will probably let Suzaku play his games so long as Charles gets what he wants namely Sakuradite. Charles did not kill his own son for being stupid, or his daughter for being a cripple. What makes his betrayal of Suzaku assured when he doesn’t even kill off Guilford for failing? Charles is going to do it just because Suzaku is an eleven? We don’t even know if he is racist, again we must assume that he is. The key to Charles is that as long as you are not causing problems he does not give two shits win or lose. You do not become top dog by killing off everyone useful to you, and Charles is still top dog. The truly unscrupulous are not racists, they just don’t care. The new order that Suzaku supports is in some ways more egalitarian and just than the old order. Even if Suzaku holds Area 11 for a few years he can easily train a successor or even a whole generation of them, native dominion in Japan does not necessarily have to end with Suzaku provided he is savvy enough to indoctrinate enough Japanese to a level of competence to survive and succeed in the new order.

So Suzaku killed his dad to end the war, therefore Suzaku must be evil at least according to Lu-Qaeda. There is invariably a lot of romanticism when a king refuses to submit when defeat is at hand and insists upon fighting to the last. Well while this sounds all fine and dandy, by what right does one man have the privilege of asking everyone else to die with him? Would it have been preferable for the women and children to throw themselves off a cliff rather than live under occupation? Kururugi the Elder had an obligation to safe guard his people. He failed to provide adequate defense and yet at the end when he demands that his country men all die with him in some futile gesture, he is in the right? In many ways it was the insistence of fighting to the last that earned Japan the honor of being the first and only nation to date to suffer from the nuclear fires of retribution. Pride is a funny thing sure you sound brave in the beginning, but had Halsey’s prophecy come true regarding the Japanese language is only spoken in hell; we shall see who has the last laugh.

Britannia is defined by the survival of the fittest that does not make them by default evil. In fact that makes them much like every other nation state. They have no use for the dumb and the lazy. Universally bigotry is not Imperial policy. They make use of non-Britannians in combat roles and do not go out of their way to kill elevens for sport. Over time it is quite possible that the numbers go away and a Britannian identity takes hold. Given that Villetta and that swarthy mob boss were Britannians it is possible for those not born white and Anglo-Saxon to be a part of the Empire. Britannia is only interested in securing its energy supply. If an eleven wants to help out they welcome the help. If an eleven doesn’t want to work for them then they are free to crave out an existence amongst the rubble and hold onto foolish pride. Britannia does not give handouts to vagrants. So what if they are poor, get a fucking job! If they resist then the Britannians start killing. Clovis operated on the assumption that Lulu and Nunnally were killed by the Japanese shortly after the invasion began, after all an idiot like him could easily be led to believe that the Britannian army was doing all that it could to find them. Cornelia believed that was the case, as did Euphie.

Sadly Clovis was incompetent and when he saw a problem he destroyed it, the problem being all those nasty elevens in the way, those same elevens who killed his brother and sister. For the most part it was just a very incompetent way of ridding himself of a problem, but Clovis never went out of his way to kill them. When they got in the way those stupid enough to stick around when the bullets were flying were of no concern to him. Britannia is not ion the business of making an ethnically pure state as they do not uproot the natives herd them into concentration camps and send in overwhelming numbers of Britannians to repopulate the land. The fact that they kept the Kyoto group around indicates that Britannia opted for indirect rule in their colonies with only a few garrison cities and monopoly on a few key items. Again the Britannians just want the Sakuradite and everything else is secondary. Given that the Kyoto group had ample funds for supporting terrorism and weapons they also share some of the blame for letting those in the ghettoes starve. The Britannians and even Lulu do not care about the majority of Japanese because they are poor and we all know how the poor are treated.

Cornelia only started clearing out ghettos with bullets when those people were providing aid and comfort to the local terror group. Even then the rank and file did not start killing until the order was given and once Zero got away probably just left. Again it’s not racism its just business. Overt racism is not the providence of every Britannian and those who actually act on their racism are few considering how the numerous Britannian infantrymen are not treating the ghettos as Liberty City on their off time. If you are strong you will have a place. Even Cornelia begrudgingly and then unconditionally accepted Suzaku as Euphie’s Knight. Cornelia wanted to win without him but even she acknowledged that he was useful in a fight. Again the capable are to be respected, Cornelia may not like him personally but she never goes out of her way to oppress him either. The Empire is built on strength. The reason why Lulu was thrown out in the first place was pretty much because Lulu wanted his daddy to publicly show grief and mourn for the loss of his mum. Charles can no more show affection in public than Lulu can run a mile. For Charles to show tears in public would be to admit that he was weak. Even if Charles did buy into survival of the fittest he did not rid himself of Lulu right after the attack, nor did he pull the plug on Nunnally while she was in critical condition.

In light of this Britannia for all its talk of survival of the fittest is not in the business of being racist as an institution. Even though the Emperor has to maintain a façade of strength, he did not kill his motherless children, one for being stupid and the other for being a cripple. No public affection is shown, but we can only wonder why he did not end their misery specifically that of Nunnally if giving up hostages was his only priority. Britannians don’t think much of one another as well. When that decadent Babel tower was under siege, anyone and everyone stupid enough not to run or too weak to run sufficiently fast were killed regardless of nationality. In short Japan’s innocence it taken for granted while Britannia is labeled as evil when it is in fact amoral, just like Suzaku.

While there is much criticism of Suzaku’s relationship with Euphie all we know is that he was in love with her. Sure we can blast how little romance blossomed, but in light of the yaoi fodder and the harem it should come as little surprise how a romantic angle got the shaft in favor of showers. Fact remains that Euphie was innocent if naïve it is she who has to suffer the blame for the massacre that followed after her geassing, while Lulu walks away merrily to kill even more people. Lulu doesn’t accept responsibility for what happened but merely brushes it aside and let’s an innocent take all the blame. In this light I can understand why Suzaku wants revenge and for Lulu to feel the fires of retribution. Suzaku is basically Tiberius when Euphie was alive he was full of hope and did as much good as possible to play the game that Britannia held. Once she died a part of him died as well. He is now driven only by the need for revenge and to clear the name of an innocent and as far as Suzaku is concerned if Lulu was able to kill his siblings in cold blood, it is high time the Lulu is forced to deal with a more personal stake in this war he started. So what if Lulu was a friend, Lulu has basically gone off the edge in his quest for vengeance Lulu uses people as pawns he doesn’t care about Japan. Lulu is an asshole, just because he was a friend does not mean Suzaku has to give him a pass when Lulu starts being a dictator and head of the Lulutology cult.

I think Calawain is off when it come to Suzaku being a Marty Stu, which is the male form of Mary Sue. For one thing few are those willing to take up the job of Soldaten, and the moral complications that come along with the job is not for the average man or those prone to sophistry. In my opinion it is far easier to identify with Lulu for his revolutionary stance (granted that few understand the full implications and the misery that revolution can bring) and fully stocked harem. Lulu being the physically weak boy that he is fights like how most otaku would like to fight with their brains, even if said brains are deficient in regards to military matters. Besides Suzaku is not getting nearly as much harem action, and otaku do love their harem.

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60 Comments

  1. L-chan
    Posted May 10, 2008 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    Well argued, Crusader.

    There is good reason why I do not bother watching Code Geass and only read summaries. I’m mildly curious, but Lulu makes me gag. He’s Light Yagami 2.0, only minus the God aspirations. I’m not sure if I’d call Suzaku L 2.0 (I don’t think he’s quite smart enough to justify it), but SOMEBODY has to oppose the All-Powerful douche.

  2. Jarmel
    Posted May 10, 2008 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

    Wow you totally missed the point. This is like an Iraqi joining the US army in hopes of reforming it from the inside. The Iraqi killing his own countrymen saying I want a promotion. He gets the promotion allowing him to kill more people instead of say getting a political job. The Iraqi then going to places like Iran(in the future I guess) and kills people there in hopes of liberating the Iraqis. You know, even this example is not that good because the US government is somewhat better than say the Nazis that are Britannia. The Iraqi while doing this then looks down on his friend who is commiting terrorism(not really) against the US government like say planting a road bomb against people who wrongfully invaded their country. Lelouch has rarely gone specifically after a civilian target just to kill civilians, there usually is a military purpose behind it. Lelouch admits that he is a villain by his speechs while Suzaku thinks he is the arm of justice(which is BS). Either Suzaku is a retard when it comes to political matters(more likely) or he wants power and is using the liberation of Japan as an excuse.

    Also let me counter that argument with the Emperor, he used them as fake hostages in Japan. Japan thought they had hostages at the bargaining table but it was a ploy by the Emperor to lull them into a sense of safe security so he could attack them. He just didn’t care about them. After all why go through the effort of killing someone when you can use them to your advantage.

  3. wait321
    Posted May 10, 2008 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

    I don’t hate Suzaku, but I have serious problems with your post. You’re defending feudalism and a “might makes right” mentality. While Britannia has the potential to be better, history has shown that equality and rights are earned by the actions of the discontent (either through peaceful protest or force). Rulers do not just give up their authority. While good rulers do exist, power corrupts and there will be far more evil emperors than good ones.

    You also seem to think that Britannia has an equal society. That is clearly not the case. Suzaku’s rise to power is an exception, not the norm (unless they start showing other non-Britannians holding high positions). In a feudal society, one’s birth determines everything. No matter how brilliant you are, a farmer’s son will always be a farmer. Britannia uses “survival of the fittest” as a justification of their oppressive social structure. All societies have classes and inequality, but it’s much worse in feudal societies than democratic ones.

    You’re also arguing that Japan’s weak military, no allies, and probably a bad society justifies Britannia’s invasion. That kind of mentality is exactly why the US toppled governments, invaded Iraq, and got the world to hate us. There is no justification for the permanent occupation of any country! Also, the Japanese clearly want to be free but were just too scared to rebel before Zero showed up. Zero is giving the people hope that their dream of freedom can become a reality.

    The main problem that I, and probably others, have with Suzaku is that he’s maintaining a bad status quo while Lelouch is trying to bring about change. I can’t guarantee that his new government will be better but I prefer people who try to make things better.

  4. Posted May 10, 2008 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    @Jarmel
    Who the fuck says we’re going to invade Iran? That’s just idle speculation from a bunch of journalists who don’t know shit. Second of all neither the US military nor the Iraqi Military have a standing policy of burn all, kill all, and loot all. You presume too much in thinking that those people planting IEDs are decent blokes. The local Sunni’s threw in their lot with us because they no longer wished to tolerate those damned foreign fighters who were telling them what to do. The Iraqi situation is more complex that you and many others presume. Every army is made up of people if good people join said army will be well behaved, if other wise do not be shocked when things go bad. Sure the Emperor lied out of his ass and the Japanese bought it lock stock and barrel, but that does not make him evil, it makes him unprincipled but not evil. Evil implies a sort of casual brutality, the Emperor and his Empire have only shown calculated brutality.

    Britannia is not even close to Nazi Germany and by default when you bring Nazis into an argument you already fucking lose objectivity. Britannia is not using slave labor, performing risky medical experiments on the undermensch, nor are they making a concentrated effort to kill off one ethnic group they came for the sakuradite, not to kill all Japanese. I already stated how they are not perpetuating a master race dogma, survival of the fittest is not the same.

    Sure when I shoot an armed terrorist who seeks to kill me, I am being evil. When they kill off women and children in the hope of killing me as well in a suicide attack using a retarded person as the suicide bomber, oh how these terrorists are noble and just! The situation is more complicated than you realize do not presume to pass judgment when you cannot see the whole picture.

    @wait321
    I am not saying that might makes right is by definition good, but it is not that different from the old order in Japan. Britannia is the anti-thesis of a welfare state the people compete for everything be it power and prestige. Clovis got a head start but when he proved a failure and therefore weak he was cast aside without much concern. The mistake that people make about equality and rights is that they are free, I find that you still have to fight for it and defend it.

    The point I was trying to make was that the old order in Japan was just as medieval in nature. Much of the discussion of Japan’s place in modernity and post modernity also include the idea that Japan is still a feudal society where old men are still largely in charge with business relationships mirroring that of lord and vassal. In Britannia naked ambition can get you places, but if you were a burakumin in old Japan good luck finding a job.

    The US is not hated for kicking the Taliban out along with Saddam, we are hated because we have grossly mishandled reconstruction. If we had done a better job from the outset and not let graft get out of hand and tried to find those arsenals after the invasions we would have been much better off and we would no longer be there. It was our epic failure in the first stages of reconstruction and subsequent occupation that earned us the hatred. If Iraq was an orderly society with a measure of prosperity there would be less vocal complaints.

    I am not arguing that the Britannian invasion was justified, it was to be expected and it is in line with the Britannian dogma of Social Darwinism. It demonstrates a critical failure of the previous Japanese government and by extension the Japanese people for having failed to anticipate such an outcome. Imperialism is bad for the people who were formerly in charge, but for the formerly oppressed it can be a boon. The Sikhs were caught between Hindus and Muslims and once the British arrived and deposed both groups the Sikhs found a new niche that they could do better in. The Dalit leadership were able to get an education that would have been denied to them under the old order, Imperialism brought schools for the Dalit. Imperialism is a double edged sword, it is both a blessing and a curse depending on where you fell in the old social order.

    It doesn’t matter if Britannia is justified or not, they are already there. With Japan in ruins is Chinese hegemony better? Or is continuous conflict between Lulu, China and Britannia (in short war onto perpetuity) preferable? Once Britannia is gone will roses just shoot out from the earth and crops a plenty will flow forth from the rubble? You assume that Lulu’s new order will be better, but better for who? If you ask the marginalized Japanese (Zainichi Koreans, Ryukyuans, Ainu, and Burakumin) will the return of native rule be better for them as well? You are not trading oppression for justice here you are trading oppression of one group for the oppression of another group. Just because some one is trying to make things better does not mean we should blindly give them our support Mugabe and Mao wanted to make things better and we all know how they changed things for the worse.

  5. Posted May 10, 2008 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

    I’ve already given my piece on Suzaku in my various episodic posts and in Stripey’s post there, so I won’t delve into it again here. However, I will say this, I don’t find Suzaku ‘evil’ per se, just a hypocrite. It all boils down to this one fact- Lelouch is really entertaining to watch, on the other hand, Suzaku is really really annoying.

  6. Jarmel
    Posted May 10, 2008 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    All right lets take apart your argument. Was it HRC who said that we would obliterate Iran, and I only used Iran as reference, or say McCain that we will pretty much nuke Iran if they touch Israel. Ok Brittania is not close to Nazi Germany?? Who are u kidding? They have ghettos, commit genocide(multiple times), want to take over the world, probably have chemical weapons judging by how in the first episode the news media wasn’t shocked that the government had chemical weapons, have a social dwarnism caste system, media is under control, not to mention committing weird medical experiments(Orange-kun FTW). I mean they pretty much used the blitzkreig instead of tanks they used knightmares.

    Yes I know the Iraq situation is not that simple, however the basics still work. I am assuming that a regular citizen of a country that is currently invaded decides to join that army to attack both his countrymen and other countries is a TRAITOR(which Suzaku is). Iraq is more complicated due to religious matters and half the country hating the other half so they don’t view this as treason. Lets say someone pwned the US(say China) and invaded the country and didn’t even allow the US citizens to call themselves US citizens. Then some dumbass starts to get in a fighter jet and becomes an ace shooting down US resistance jets. He would be a traitor, even if he thought he could help his country by raising up the military ladder( which is so unbelievably bs). It seems Suzaku didn’t even know about the Knights of One in season 1 btw. So say Suzaku does get get the Knight of One, he is now the dictator over a once free country, which would have no power. If the country goes out of line, Suzukau I promise you will be slapped so hard to fix everything, he’ll do it not to lose his influential position. So the country really doesn’t have any freedom even if it might appear so. The only way for the Japanese people to be free is to rebel as the Britainnians sure are not going to give up power. So either he believes in the ideals of the Britainnian army or he doesn’t and is killing in the name of them instead. He sees the path to improving his country but trying to maintain the genocidal status quo against his own people. He killed his father, even if the father was wrong, that does not give you the right to kill the elected official.

    You are doing currently what sociologists call ‘blaming the victim’. You are saying it was Japan’s fault for being invaded when it wasn’t. It was due to some racist power hungry king who wanted more energy to take over the EU and the Chinese Federation. “If Iraq was an orderly society with a measure of prosperity there would be less vocal complaints.” is exactly why things are so screwed up in Iraq. The reason it’s not prosperous is because WE(the United States people) tried to force our ideals on a country that really didn’t want it or was not ready for it. However the US in all it’s infinite wisdom decided to throw more troops and money there without realizing the problem, we are.

    Oh btw I wasn’t passing judgement, but you sure are by saying that the Japanese deserved it for not being ready. All I was saying is that if a person kills his countrymen with the goal of ending war, he’s wrong. I can’t remember the exact saying but you can bomb a place to pieces but not peace, which is exactly what Suzaku is doing.

    Ok also not every country has the resources to stand up against a world power with new weapons, say Poland and Germany, US and Japan with nukes or even US and Iraq or say US and Iraq again, or Britain and France with Africa. They might have thought it was coming but not much they can do, except guerilla warfare which Suzaku’s father (the PM of Japan was going to do). This has even worked, look at Soviet Union and Afghanistan, and the Soviets got pwned there).

    In response to your Britannia is already there, just because a government exists does not make it right, or even worthy of existance. Otherwise we still would be living in the bloody British colonies. Yes roses won’t sprout from the earth but as a human you have a duty to bring down a corrupt government and TRY to create a better one. We have no clue what the new government will be like so don’t assume it’s going to be worse, it might be worse or it might be better. However sticking to the status quo has not fixed any problems or made them better or worse. You are right, you shouldn’t change for changes sake however it is more than justified in this case.

  7. Jounin
    Posted May 10, 2008 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

    I have to admit that when I read Stripey’s post I wanted to comment too but thought that a 6 paragraph comment was too long and wouldn’t be read by a person who just types “Die, Suzaku, die!!!” I am even starting to see some bloggers like Mentar from Momento having to go out of his way in finding reasons to hate Suzaku more like when he comments about how Suzaku was to blame for the Ashford student council’s altered memories. It is nice to see you and Stripey take a larger view of the situation. I have to make just two corrections to your post, Crusader:

    There are actually some discrimination laws in Britannia concerning numbers. In ep18, Euphie is trying to explain her reason for making Suzaku her knight and Cornelia replies back that it is a national policy that they be treated differently and it require being the emperor to change that. It is this difference in social standing that allows the Britannians to think of the numbers as inferior and makes it so hard for many of them to accept Suzaku’s rise in standing. We do see a change in part to Suzaku’s efforts like the congratulation party for his knighthood where the students are quite happy for him. However, the change in attitude is slow and we see quite a bit of shock from the same students who in ep21 when Euphie announces the Special Administration Zone at the Ashford Academy.

    The second point is that Suzaku didn’t kill anyone for much of the first season except for the one case in ep8 when he had to take out that linear cannon to get to the hostages (after the JLF pushed a civilian off of the building). His method of fighting was to overwhelm the opposition to end the fighting and thus reduce the number of casualties. Most Suzaku haters will point to ep13 when the Sutherlands were sniping at the JLF on the tanker, but if you watch, but we don’t see Suzaku take a shot and is instead frozen because he is conflicted between taking a life and following orders. He also panics so visibly in ep17 about executing Todou that Cecile notices. It is a conflict between his ideal of following the rules and allowing for no more sacrifices that tends to get him into trouble. Loyd explains in ep11 that this contradiction will eventually kill him only to meet with Cecile’s fist. However, he is not so naive when he admits to Kallen in ep20 that the people he captures don’t meet a good end. It is not until Euphie’s death and V.V. explaining Geass that Suzaku abandons one of his core principles of no other sacrifices as symbolized by leaving his father’s watch behind with Euphie’s body in the end of ep23. It is only at this point that he rips through any Black Knight that happens to be in his path toward Zero. Lelouch never explains that Geassing Euphie was an accident and Suzaku can only assume that it was on purpose to secure the loyalty of all of Japan. With his hopes and hard work crushed at the end of season 1, we see a cold, ruthless Suzaku in season 2 having only a shadow of his old ideals left and earning the name White Grim Reaper.

    I find Crusader’s term Lu-Quaeda funny, if a bit too spiteful to be productive. Try as I may in Omni’s site to try to bring evidence to make the Suzaku haters at least understand where he comes from, they will not listen. I don’t hate Lelouch, but I am beginning to find his tactics more and more distasteful starting when he Geassed, killed, and publicly vilified Euphie and as he continues to manipulate the Japanese to his own end of revenge. Lelouch always justified his sacrifices by saying they will mean something when he achieves his goal (he tells Kallen something similar in ep13 when she had doubts after the death of Shirley’s father). But then you have to ask the question how many sacrifices are too many? Apparently, for Lelouch, too many is the loss of Nunnally, and he abandons the Japanese at their most desperate time. I never found Suzaku’s action hypercritical as many Suzaku haters would say because he always knew his path would be a lone and difficult one. The Britannians never respected him (the spray paint on his gym clothes at school) and the Japanese thought of him as a traitor (this attitude started to visibly change in ep20) and he would have to endure alone. It is only luck and his ungodly skill (he dodges an automated machinegun for crying out loud) that he finds friends to help with that pain. If Suzaku failed, he would be a no-name grunt and the Japanese would be no better off. If Lelouch failed, and he does, the Japanese would suffer Britannia’s wrath at best.

    A lot of my analysis comes from season 1. Now into season 2, I am saddened to see Suzaku abandon so many of his ideals and seek power like how Lelouch does. He presents Lelouch to the emperor in a bid for enough power to protect people. However, I also see this a punishment for Lelouch who never accepted responsibility for what happened to Euphie. True responsibility is to admit to your crime, however accidental it was. Lelouch does no such thing and actually profits from it by publicly vilifying her in ep23 and thus earning the loyalty of the Japanese to continue his campaign of chaos. One thing Lelouch does not forsee is how this changes Suzaku (who seems to be susceptible to dramatic shifts in his life, first one killing his father, second Euphie’s death) into abandoning any loyalty he had for his friend. In a way, Lelouch has only himself to blame for ending up in front of the emperor (also doesn’t help when he was so dismissive to Suzaku’s question of not cooperating with Euphie and saying that it was all in the past in the end of ep25).

    Well, this is enough for tonight. Why do I have to write what is essentially an English paper on an anime? If I cut out the episode references it would not have been so long but I have to thank my high school English teachers who were very tough and required evidence to prove my assumptions.

  8. Posted May 10, 2008 at 11:59 pm | Permalink

    @Jarmel
    For goodness sake the eagerness in which you throw around the term Nazi degenerates the scale of what they did. Britannia is NOT systematically killing off every Japanese they encounter, they are NOT performing medical experiments on Japanese, they performed it on one of their own, unless Orange-kun happened to be Japanese too. The ghettos were not established by Imperial decree they are shanty towns built by the poor who carve out a living in the ruins they are not fenced in by walls or wires. Genocide implies a sustained effort to exterminate an entire people, the fact that there are lots of Japanese roaming about in the open implies that there is no active hunt for them at all. It’s not genocide as perpetuated by the Nazis it is a callous disregard for collateral damage. Just because you use Blitzkrieg does not make you a Nazi, the Russians had developed their doctrine of Deep Operations along similar lines as did the Western Allies. The Soviets had Chemical weapons, the US is still destroying its stock piles of chemical weapons along with India and China.

    Let’s keep the Iraq thing out of this and use some more obscure conflict before this post really goes south. In the case of Iran neither McCain nor Hillary are president yet, and even if they are nuking Iran is out of the question, like all politicians they make idle boasts to seems like tough people. Strategic realities will come first if you know who cannot initiate a nuclear strike on a whim, what makes you think those two will? Political boasting is one thing military and strategic reality is quite another.

    Suzaku’s situation is unique he and the Japanese have basically a wrecked country independence is pretty much out of the question given their two super power neighbors both need the Sakuradite. Britannia is already here to kick them out is to make Japan vulnerable to a Chinese invasion so you trade one form of tyranny for another form of tyranny (Emperor or court Eunuchs). You say fight for freedom like its that easy, suppose they expel the Britannians, only to fight the Chinese for a few decades, then Britannia is strong again and then they invade when China withdraws. Is this freedom then worth eternal war? If most of the population wants peace will it be right for the die hards to demand that more blood be spilled for the sake of independence on a ruined and blackened landscape that can no longer provide sustenance for its people? You throw around the term traitor all to lightly. If the Japan Lulu wants is not the kind of Japan Suzaku wants then Suzaku is a traitor for disagreeing with the Lulu vision? What Lulu wants is supported by roughly 250 people willing to fight and die for it, but what of the others who inhabit the ghettos? When Germany was at war with the Allies those who opposed them spied for the Allies and sabotaged the Nazis. Wilhelm Canaris and others risked their lives to save as many Jews as they could in direct opposition to German policy. Does that then make every one of them traitors? Japan is gone and a new Japan created in Lulu’s vision is the alternative, Suzaku knows what Lulu is doing and I do not think that he is a traitor for not wanting to see Japan under Lulu leadership. Suzaku knows that Lulu’s struggle is not about independence or freedom, Lulu needs them as tools for his revenge and nothing more. Yes Lulu is fighting for Japan, but it is not the Japan that Suzaku wants.

    The Soviets lost the Afghan war due to a variety of issues, one the Soviet Military was already starting to feel the effects of corruption, it was the Brezhnev Era where corruption had spread to unprecedented levels, you had Brezhnev as supreme leader of Soviet Union, the US, China, and Pakistan were supplying the resistance with arms and cash. All of that in no small way helped out the Afghans who did no like communism, you forget that there were some Afghans who wanted communism there still are. When the Afghan army mutinied half remained loyal to the communist government. It was not merely a case of rebellion against Soviet hegemony, but it was a civil war where the Soviets were dragged in. You make the same mistake the French did in 1914 and Japan in the 1930s and 1940s that elan can and will carry the day. Bravery and willingness to fight can only bring you so far sooner or later an opponent that is disciplined and trained under a better doctrine will over come you.

    Taking your scenario into account if China defeated the US and the only resistance group consisted of a bunch of right wing religious zealots armed with guns and the preachings of Pat Robertson forgive me if I find the commies to be slightly more palatable. You can change political leanings you cannot change religious beliefs. Sure you can blast me as a traitor if I join the occupation forces to kill off these religious nuts, but these fanatics are not fighting for my America, and if they are all that’s left then America is truly dead. I would then move to Canada. Just because Suzaku is killing Japanese does not mean that those he kills are patriots fighting for his Japan. Lulu has created a cult they call him their messiah their only hope. Suzaku knows what and who Lulu is why should he throw his lot with them if he does not agree with their methods or ideology?

    I am NOT blaming Japan for being in invaded, nevertheless their failure to have any real contingency plan is a mark of less than competent government. They are not at fault for the invasion, but they are at fault for failing to put up an adequate defense. It takes a special kind of incompetence for a nation to have no allies, even the Poles had friends, and were able to sneak off some fighting troops to continue the struggle. This to me is a far better thing that brining the conflict to the doorstep of those who cannot defend themselves.

    What is the point of trying to establish a new government when invasion by another power is not far away? Is it not preferable to grit your teeth and feign subservience until the time is ripe for rebellion? When Japan is rebuilt and enough Japanese have made it into the ranks of the local garrisons? So what if there are still terrorists of the same nationality those people are idiots and posers who have no real hope for succeeding. If they wanted to help they would not be hiding behind the local population firing behind women and children and making things worse than they already are. There is no Japanese territory left from which the struggle can be continued conventionally, and there are no allies who will support them unconditionally. India was able to get her independence in no small part because the British were by then dependent on the loyalty of the local garrisons making the military situation untenable. You say infiltration into a foreign military is stupid, tell that to the men of the Indian Army.

    It is brave and noble to say you will struggle on no matter the odds, but for me I prefer a more calculated method that requires limited bloodshed. There are more ways than one to skin a cat, just because the noble romantic path is shiny and sweet does not mean that it is the best in the long run.

  9. Jarmel
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    Jounin, nice argument. I pretty much agree with you in regards to Lelouch. Suzaku’s actions in season 2 excluding the emperor thing, which I feel understandable as to why Suzaku did this, are hypocritical. This was less so in early season 1 as Suzaku tried to prevent bloodbaths and even saved that civilian in the first few eps(too lazy to look for references). My argument mostly focuses on late season 1 Suzaku and season 2. While Suzaku’s initial problems are still there (such as joining the military to change it from within), he tries to prevent casualties. Suzaku in season 2 though, is using a blind crippled loli as a tool, this is not how an agent of justice works.

    In regards to the China and US invasion thing, I would suggest getting rid of the invaders then focusing on internal matters as you have to do one step at a time.

    Ok I’m going to have to edit this post.
    I agree that breaking free is not going to be enough. Japan will have to form some sort of military alliance with the EU or most likely the Chinese Federation. This can be done with the promise of an energy source, although the Chinese could threaten to take it anyway, they might not be up for taking over the whole of Japan. The Japanese would of course have to be careful not to be absorbed by this military alliance, but at this point, this is all they have. We have no clue how powerful the CF is or even how the CF works although yes they do have emperors and some aristocracy there too. What I am saying is that a worldwide revolution against Britannia at the same time is necessary to cripple the empire from destroying the fledgling nation.
    Genocide is used as in the 1948 United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Article 2 states that this convention defines genocide as “any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life, calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; [and] forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”[Used wikipedia as too lazy but does have reference to original article http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/p_genoci.htm. Ok the Britainnians took away the 11s basic human rights, identities, their name and culture, systematically killing 11 in ghettos( which I highly doubt that 11s have an option in their living selections).

    I also prefer the bloodless method but not the romantic idealistic method relying on one person to save the entire country. Zero uses an army of Japanese who believe in his message( which btw means that he has a good amount of support among the people). However we have not seen any other Japanese person trying to reform the system from within.

  10. Taiyaki
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    People hate Suzaku for being “evil”?

    I thought we all hated him because he was a hypocritical douche in season 1. Right now he’s the Empire’s bitch, but was tolerable before ep 5. It’s not clear whether using Nunnally was his idea (50% chance it is), but if it is he’s now a massive hypocritical piece of shit and just needs to die a very painful death.

  11. Jarmel
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 12:49 am | Permalink

    Sorry I have to kinda double post( as I created the other post when referring to Jounin) but anyway the Nazis initially did not exterminate the Jews either(other than a few people going missing every now and then). The fact that nobody really complains when an entire ghetto of people goes up in smoke shows something is really wrong about the empire. They were willing to kill a schoolkid that they THOUGHT might have terrorist connections without the form of a trial or any form of justice is evil. There is obviously heavy discrimination against the 11s forcing them into ghettos although I’m sure not all 11s are this way( as shown by Kallen, however she might have influential Britainnian father). Also remember if it is that easy to kill a whole section full of people, how much of a step to order the elimination of a possibly rebellious nation. I feel that the creators modeled the Britainnian empire after the Nazis and you dont, so let’s agree to disagree as this is not my main point.
    My main point is that Suzuka’s actions are that of it’s my way or the highway as opposed to Lelouch who has been open to different ideas(such as Euphemia’s proposal). Suzaku is starting to throw away his ideals and go for whatever it takes method, similar to you know who( I don’t mean Voldemort). However how will bringing the EU under the Britainnian control help to solidy the Japanese position. It won’t but it will help Suzaku up in the ranks to the point where HE can control Japan. Once again, how much control do you think he will have in controlling this country. He might be given unilateral control but not likely. There obviously will be discrimination which the Japanese are sick of. Truth be told, both Suzaku and Lelouch could fail.

    Also quickly commenting on your the Japanese government should have a contingency plan, the Britainnians unveiled a brand new weapon that totally overpowered anything the Japanese had. There is only so much planning one can do before being totally overpowered(unless you use nukes=D). “Is it not preferable to grit your teeth and feign subservience until the time is ripe for rebellion?” that depends on the individual. However when do you know it’s time for rebellion? This could come in 50 years or 100 unless individuals decide to take the matter up themselves. Robert Browning said “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”. While Suzaku is definitely doing something, he is doing the wrong thing for the wrong reasons in season 2. He hands over his friend not because his friend backstabbed him but because it would get him a promotion to help him along his goal.

  12. Anonymous
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 12:51 am | Permalink

    I thought we hated Suzaku for the amount of impossible things no other man can achieve.

    He’s like Britannia’s Jesus.

  13. fanty
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 12:57 am | Permalink

    Suzaku is an allegory of USA soldiers who think that they are the right ones and the good ones while actually they are acting like total hypocrites. It’s only natural for you to agree with him.

  14. Kururu
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 1:47 am | Permalink

    He’s “SPINzaku” now, not Suzaku.

    =)

  15. Posted May 11, 2008 at 2:11 am | Permalink

    @Jounin
    Thanks for the essay.

    I think Suzaku was meant to have his ideals destroyed and once he no longer believed in anything he decided to become the monster that will destroy Lulu and end his insignificant rebellion. Eventually the killing got to him, every one has a breaking point and his came when Euphie died.

    @Jarmel
    I don’t think an alliance is in the works as such an arrangement implies cooperation between two equals or at least near equals. If the Chinese only want Sakuradite then Britannia can buy them off with what they mine, or being two major powers eying EU territories an arrange ment between equals can be made between them as well. Would it not be preferable to partition the EU and take what sakuradite they got than deal with an underhanded terrorist who seems to want to inspire the kind of nationalism that would threaten Chinese hegemony?

    The plight of the ghettos seems to be more like the lot of the poor in every country nobody really cares about them. They have children among them who are less than 10 so they are at least capable of reproducing and raising kids out of infancy. If genocide is in the cards for Britannia they sure are being sloppy about it. As for working with the Pat Robertson rebels, I know who and what they believe in, I doubt many would throw their lot with them. I would no more work with them than Black man would work with the KKK. I do not believe that America is defined by nationality but rather the belief that all men are created equal if there are “American” resistance fighters who advocate some being more equal than others I would not betray my beliefs and cast my lot with those who betray the culmination of 200 years of democracy. To me such people would be the worst kind of traitor.

    If the Japanese government could not smell trouble brewing then one can only wonder how such men got elected. The Poles knew early on which nations posed a threat to them, and ever were they vigilant against them. If Kururugi Genbu was an able politician and not merely profiteering then he should have seen something was going to happen. Every nation has worst case scenario plans.

    I think that a nation can survive periods of foreign domination, the Poles waited decades for their nation to be reborn. A nation and a people only truly die when there is no one left who believes.

    @Taiyaki
    Suzaku is nigh unkillable, and I cannot wait to see what his master plan is for Nunnally. I trust the Suzaku is about to become the unprincipled bastard that Lulu forced him to become. I think he is like every raw recruit he wants to believe, but harsh reality is going to do him in, in fact its not about japanese freedom any more its about making life hard for the man who killed his Euphie and framed her as a war criminal.

    @Anonymous
    He’s Mu la Flaga and he will come back with a mask! No only will he make the impossible possible but he will get his woman too.

    @fanty
    We don’t even pretend we’re being good. We just go where the elected civilian government tells us to go. You know the kind of government that good people like you elected or failed to keep from office. General Shinseki warned Congress of this sort of shit, the boys from CENTCOM cautioned the government, but were ignored. Most of us were about as befuddled as you were when we learned of our destination, and like you we believed in Powell who was a good man an Army man, sadly he too was fooled. Do not presume to think that we are a bunch of idiots. We know what war means we know what we are capable of, however we do not initiate coups like some other armies when things don’t go our way or when bureaucratic assholes snub us.

    We do what we are ordered to do, desire or idealism does not enter into it. We voice our concerns yes, but we are under an obligation to shut up and do it when the civilian leadership tells us that it is no longer up for debate. In my experience those who are the most eager for war are those who have never held a rifle and stood a post. You think we want to got out there and shoot our weapons in anger? Don’t be foolish we aren’t doing this for fun we do it because it is deemed necessary by people like you.

    @Kururu
    That might soon change.

  16. fanty
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 2:33 am | Permalink

    Government has the power to order people go to war only because people give it that power by obeying the government. So if a nation goes to war and kills, it’s because the nation wanted to go to war and kill, regardless of whether there is any anger.

    I can admire Suzaku’s loyalty because he is a fictional character, but agreeing with him is a whole another matter. Even though war makes moneyz, letting your government make you do whatever it wants is a BAD MOVE.

    EDIT: On the topic of you not considering yourself the good guys… I see USA’s propaganda and I judge it by that. I can’t get into people’s heads and know how they feel about themselves. I just get the impression that most of them are mindless drones and put propaganda straight into the brain as the ultimate truth… both Brittanians and USAians.

  17. Posted May 11, 2008 at 2:38 am | Permalink

    I can’t say I have too much qualms with Suzaku as a character. He’s got his reasons, he’s affected by Euphie’s death like any normal human would, and he has a goal.
    I just don’t like him because I like Lelouch. I also hate Britannia. We’ve seen several occasions when Britannian officers will order the wanton slaughter of civilians, just for shits and giggles. While Lelouch may exploit innocent civilians and/or kill them, it’s never ‘just because’, he usually has a reason, or its an accidental byproduct. I can’t hate Suzaku like I do Britannia, but I can’t like him either, since he’s fighting for them — even if he intends to change them from the inside out.

  18. Posted May 11, 2008 at 2:49 am | Permalink

    @Nagato
    Britannians don’t kill just because, they do it because they do not care about who gets between them and their enemies. Their reason for slaughtering bystanders is because they are stupid enough not to take cover and not fast enough to run away. Collateral damage for them is just natural selection there is no malice, just a callous disregard for the dumb and the slow.

    @fanty
    If I try and stop my government through means not allowed it is mutiny and it will result in a military coup. So which is preferable an less than competent democracy or a military junta with good intentions? My hands are tied because my society does not want the military interfering in domestic affairs and getting into government. We did what we could, and it was up to the civilians to decide on what to do in 2004 they made their choice and like them we have to live with it.

    The US military does not mutiny, we do not launch coups. US military propaganda is hamfisted and crappy only an idiot would believe that the recruiter and the commercials are 100% real. Even the rank and file laugh and mock the recruiting slogans. The guys in public affairs just mail it it they don’t even believe enough in what they write to even try.

  19. Posted May 11, 2008 at 3:37 am | Permalink

    @ Crusader: Are you serious? They shot Suzaku just because he refused to shoot one of their own, a Britannian. They didn’t even bother to ask why Lulu was mixed up with the terrorist.
    Not to mention when Clovis ordered the wanton slaughter of the Japanese in the Shinjuku ghetto. Why? I believe the reason was, “They’re non-Britannian scum who refuse to live up to Britannian standards.” As if the Japanese had a choice, what with all the scorn ‘honored Britannians’ receive, who undoubtedly have the Purist faction breathing down their neck at any given point in time.
    Britannian cruelty is shown yet again in R2 episode 1′s Babel Tower, when they murder practically all the civilians inside, Britannian or not.
    I highly doubt any of these instances can just be thrown aside as ‘the bystanders are too stupid and slow to run’. If you were in a crowded place and all of a sudden a squad of Knightmares burst in through the windows and begins randomly firing, it’s no longer and issue of stupid or slow for those who are immediately killed.

  20. Posted May 11, 2008 at 3:48 am | Permalink

    @Nagato
    Those same idiots who asked who Lulu was certainly did not come off better, hence the system works ye who do not shoot first get geassed. That’s why its shoot first ask later.

    If the Honorary Britannians are weak then purists will eat them, if the purists are weak, Cornelia will dispose of them. Again the system works. After all who was held in higher esteem by Cornelia, Orange-kun or Suzaku?

    Clovis tried to kill for fun and we all know what happened to him, killed by another Britannian. The System works!

    In your scenario of knightmares jumping through windows guns blazing, my solution quick grab a human shield! Again the system works…

    Besides it is as you say they shot Britannians AND elevens. They’re not racist they do not care.

  21. Posted May 11, 2008 at 3:56 am | Permalink

    I think grabbing a human shield only works if you have reflexes like Suzaku. :p

    Still feel that ‘shoot first ask later’ is wanton slaughter. One wouldn’t be in such worry about being killed if one wasn’t in such a hurry to kill. Just my two cents.

  22. Jounin
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 3:57 am | Permalink

    Damn, one more comment before I go to sleep…no essay for now.

    I would be careful in using the word support to describe how the Japanese feel about Zero. It is more accurate to say that they have been manipulated into believing that Zero is their savior when he could just as easily be their doom. Lelouch quickly learns in his first battle against Cornelia in ep7 that barking orders did not guarantee obedience and needed to come up with a motivator. The idea of fighting for justice is lofty and easy to get behind, but I remember what a character from Scrapped Princess said, “Fighting for your justice means depriving another of his.” Where was the justice in launching millions of tons of earth on a town of civilians in ep10? Loyd makes a valid point to Suzaku as he is excavating the dead civilians in ep12 that as a soldier, justice cannot be considered in his actions. In ep13, Lelouch plants an explosive on the JLF tanker and explains to the Black Knights that they were committing suicide and not to waste their “sacrifice”. Ougi (and Diethard and Suzaku) sees through this because it looks too similar to Narita in ep10 but disappointingly makes nothing of it later. After he makes his decision to free Todou in ep17 he comments to C.C. that he will be obtaining a chess piece he’s been eying and hopes to obtain another (Suzaku). His speech in ep23 to rally the Japanese by casting Euphie as a monster while conveniently leaving out his involvement was probably his most despicable act. This draws into question if he is really fighting for justice or just toying with the Japaneses’ emotions in ep8 and ep9. In season 2, Lelouch explains in a speech in ep2 that he has been watching the world for a year when the truth is that he lost his memory and was living his life as a student. In ep4, he answers the Black Knights question of why he abandoned them by saying it was to defeat Britannia when in it was really to save Nunnally and he did not care what happened to the Japanese if she were gone (I wonder how they would have responded to that?). It was disappointing to see the Black Knights accept such flagrant assault on their intelligence and only shows how badly they have been manipulated by Lelouch. At this point, their situation is so bad (caused to a great degree by Lelouch) that they have no choice but to follow him.

    We know what Lelouch’s true goal is: to destroy Britannia. He states this in his meeting with Kirihara in ep12. The disturbing aspect of this in ep13 when he tells Kallen that in order to not waste the blood that has already been shed, he has no choice but to shed more blood. This is the exact same argument that President Bush uses to keep troops in Iraq: to not dishonor the ones who have already died, we must continue the mission (and have more killed–I wonder how popular he would be if said those words?). This is actually a human behavior that casinos rely on to part fools from their money. It is an unending spiral until there is no blood left to be spilled, or in other words no Japanese left to fight. So what is the United States of Japan if not a means for Lelouch to gain a national army to fight Britannia with? Is it a means to involve the rest of the world into a conflict that will end in ruin and Lelouch left standing to build the world he desires? Does he have the right to wreck such chaos?

  23. Blue
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 4:13 am | Permalink

    >>Besides Suzaku is not getting nearly as much harem action, and otaku do love their harem.

    Ah, but Suzaku has his pink haired loli of death! (and Zino) When Lulu gets a loli, I’ll consider his harem unfairly larger than Suzaku’s. (Besides, Suzaku’s place is full of mecha to play with. Lulu doesn’t have nearly as many toys.)

  24. ZeusIrae
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 4:42 am | Permalink

    I think you miss an important point, Crusader.People don’t like foreign overlords, it doesn’t matter if they bring technology and how good they are.They are foreigners, they don’t understand you, they don’t care about you, they don’t respêct anything, they destroy your most sacred traditions and sanctuaries in the name of peace(as Clausewitz said, the aggressor always want peace).Cooperation is possible but certainly not love and armed opposition should be expected.

    Britannia is a repressive empire where the britannians monopolize the power.There’s no chance in hell that a non-britannian can have a significant position in hierarchy.Suzaku is the exception to the rule.
    If Britannia was like the roman empire after the edict of Caracalla(granting citizenship to all the inhabitants of the empire), perhaps I would have agreed with you.But it’s not the case.In CG, japenese are governed by foreigners who despise them and the japanese don’t like it.There’s no evidence of indirect rule and even if there was it’s still a rule.Protectorates will seek independance when an opportunity appears.

    I am sure you studied extensively history.So you know that rebellion against the emperial authority is a common thing.When a rebellion starts, people don’t calculate how many people will be killed and how much it will cost, they just do it because they find their current situation unbearable(of course an exiled prince with views on the throne always help).Whether rebellions are legitimate or not is irrelevant, they happen.Lelouch is merely a catalyst.

    Suzaku is a moralfag because he lives in a dellusional world where he actually think he can convinces the Britannian to accept non-britannian as they equals or at least give them some autonomy in their regions.There’s no way it can happen in his lifetime.I am not saying it’s impossible but only a delusional maniac would believe that he could do that alone.History is full of foreign mavericks who obtained a massive amount of power in an empire.Most of the time, their reputation is absolutely awful.Not because they were bad but because they were hated.Again, most of the time, their end isn’t pretty.

  25. Randor
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 5:27 am | Permalink

    In my eyes, the problem with Suzaku is not that he’s evil but that he seems arrogant. He is hypocritical in that he is beginning to sacrifice the very things which once drove him to attain his goals. Im not even sure what his goals are exactly; is it rebuilding Area 11 into a more peaceful Japan through becoming the Knight of One or is he trying to end all suffering everywhere? Granted, you have many good points on why Lelouch is the asshole, but Suzaku’s idealistic view of “If I get stronger, I can make everything b of etter” though in keeping with the Empire’s standing, just seems foolish. At what point does he cross the line seperating hero for peace from warrior of the nation?

    In regards to Charles, sincerely do not believe that showing evidence of mourning or feelings creates a weak leader. To acknowledge a loved one’s death isn’t pathetic; its normal. You make it seem as if the entire Britannian Empire is just a war faction, bent on conquering the world. It doesn’t seem to me they’re attempting to unite the world for any particular reason, let alone peace. Im so tired of people claiming that if everyone and everything is united under one banner, it’ll all be alright.

    Can Brittania’s actions be justified in any case? You can’t simply call the inhabitants of a country stupid for not bowing to a foreign nation in search of resources. The attitude of “Get out of the way and give up, or we’ll slaughter you” will ineivitably anger the inhabitants of the country; there’s a differernce between misplaced pride and wanting to keep a sense of individuality and not be absorbed into a superpower. You can’t say that since one country is weaker than another and not as capable as a military power that this warrants them being inducted into an Empire, supposedly for their benefit.

    “In an age of grand alliances and EU why is the notion of Empire that hateful?”

    Excuse me if Im misinterpreting, but it seems here your climing that the Empire is a union between nations. Since when is the conquering of countries and assigning of numbers and alliance and not an oppresive regime? Though the results of an Empire conquering surrounding countries didn’t end up terribly (*cough* Romans) and did advance the scientfic and agricultural aqspects of those nations that were conquered,the fact is at the end of the day the losers are seen as inferior as a RACE and the warriors superior as a RACE. As such, a staple is created which cant be truly be changed through any amount of co-habitation. Though it may seem removed, I’d like to take Malorie Blackman’s Noughts and Crosses as a point of reference. This truth wouldn’t change if the roles of Japan and Brittania were reversed; the idea of an Empire just can’t be accepted by those not within it.

    What I’m trying to say is, Japan probably wasn’t perfect but does it warrant the domination of the country as the Empire is trying to attain resources, and through this the continuous suppression and ineivitable subjagation and damaging war that will occur because of it?

    This is just my opinion as naive believer in justice and the “right” thing, whatever the hell that is :).

  26. Hotarubi
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    So, people have been saying that because Lelouch is AWARE of his evil deeds, he is better than Suzaku.
    Well, if you murdered 20 people and you actually admit that it is wrong and it is a serious crime, does that make you any better from another murderer who thinks that his doing was all in the name of justice or *insert whatever noble reason you might think of*??? Does being aware make you any better or more likable? Likable maybe, because people like someone who can take responsibility, which Lelouch, by the way, can not do and never did.

    I guess I can’t really support either of them, but I am more inclined towards Suzaku’s side. While I do not support Britannia, even though I do not think they are Nazis (otherwise Suzaku wouldn’t even exist in these series), I wouldn’t support Lelouch because he is manipulating a people, not caring about their lives or fates, trying to cover the whole thing up with false rants about future independence of Japan, just to achieve his selfsih goals in the end. Like his sister’s happiness and the revenge of his mother’s death. Lelouch is not fully ready to accept responsibilty for leading a rebellion, killing people, causing chaos, he is just a high-schooler after all.

    I do not want to get into politics, since it is not my field (and I guess no one is ever right in there), but character-wise, I cannot come to like Lelouch at all. In fact, with each episode he annoys me even more than before. Japanese just conveniently happened to be in his “area”. He does not care about them, but he wants to become a KING (that sure sounds like his father) and form the United States of Japan (man, isn’t that ridiculous?). He is just another hypocrite.

  27. wait321
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    @Jounin

    Great posts. It’s the most convincing arguments I’ve ever read and you kept everything completely within the realm of the anime. Lelouch keeps looking forward and planning the next move without regards for the people that he’s sacrificed. That’s one of his main flaws and will probably destroy him in the end.

    @Crusader

    You’re not going to be able to convince anyone of Suzaku’s good intentions by defending Britannia. The anime clearly portrays it as an evil empire that does evil deeds. The difference is how Suzaku and Lelouch deal with that evil. If you can prove that Suzaku’s methods will produce better results than Lelouch’s then you’ve succeessfully defended Suzaku.

    No one is going to believe that Britannia is better than a democratic society. Their whole social darwanism talk is just propaganda. As Jounin pointed out, they have laws that prevent talented people from unprivileged families from rising to power (unless you get yourself the help of a princess). The Britannians are oppressors and, like all governments, they use propaganda to justify their unfair rule. Using what they say will only weaken your defense. Use their actions to justify your arguments.

    “The mistake that people make about equality and rights is that they are free, I find that you still have to fight for it and defend it.”

    You’re contradicting yourself. The Japanese are fighting for their equality and rights but you are also arguing that Britannia oppression is better for the Japanese. Rebellion is the historical and natural way to resist oppressors and that’s why most people find it easier to identify with Lelouch than Suzaku.

    @Hotarubi

    Yes, a murderer who is aware that he’s committed evil is better than one that isn’t aware of it. A person who isn’t aware that he’s committed evil has no possibility of feeling sorry for his victims or repenting for his crimes. Although unlikely, an aware murderer can still repent.

    Right now, Lelouch doesn’t feel the weight of his crimes. He’s just using it as an excuse to commit more crimes but Suzaku will NEVER feel the weight of those that he’s killed because he doesn’t even acknowledge that he did anything wrong.

  28. Anonymous
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    I don’t know about everyone else, but I’ve always disliked Suzaku for being a hypocrite. He says he wants to change the Brittanian empire by doing what joining the military, where he’s basically a dog. When they say “jump” he says “how high” when they say “shoot that civilians” he says “which one”. Even if he becomes a knight of one and rules over japan, he’ll still be called away on missions by the higher ups leaving the commanding brittaninan officers in charge. Whose to say they won’t kill any helpless civilians while he’s away. Even if he gives they can still disobey and lie to him the report. Its easier for the advisors to lie to their leader than change anything, and he’s so swamped with work how will he ever find out? In case anyone has missed out on the actual story Suzaku isn’t much of a leader, nor is he very knowledgeable in politics, this is something he actually admitted to. They still discriminated against the Japanese people even when Euphie was governor, and there much she could to stop them. Which is why just Suzaku becoming a knight of one and governor over Japan oh I’m sorry its no longer Japan its Area 11, won’t do much. As a person in another forum said ” having Suzaku in politics is like having Lulu run in a marathon”

    On the point of Lulu, he has actually admitted that he wasn’t an ally of justice. He pretty said and I quote “In order to beat the bigger evil, I must be evil myself”, he’s does a lot of immoral things but the difference between him and Suzaku is that Lulu actually owns up that fact that he actually done some pretty immoral things. Lulu knows he’s wrong he just doesn’t care. Also we all conveniently forget the fact that there was a rebellion or rather resistance long before Lulu decided to become Zero and created the Black Knights, there were just different factions, with the same goal, and zero resources. Lulu did not instigate the rebellion, he merely joined in, and gathered all of the separate factions together, and got them resources.

    Suzaku gets on my nerves because he reminds me of that person who just sits behind the fan, and though he sees the shit coming at him doesn’t move a muscle. And lets the shit spray him, as he makes excuses for why he sitting there.

  29. Posted May 11, 2008 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    I wish you guys luck in your essays attempting to convince Crusader of the errors in his ways. The man has a built-in hatred for Sunrise mecha protagonists that would take a nuke to defeat~

  30. Posted May 11, 2008 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    Oh my, truth to be told I haven´t read all comments and answers so if I ask a question or something that already has been cleared, point me in the right direction.

    My personal opinion of Suzaku is pretty low. “I´ll change everything from the inside”. Was that why he went hookie with Euphie? To marry her, kill her of and then be the sole ruler of Japan?

    Since he isn´t stable mentally. And he has a record of killing people close to him.

    And now, with him using Nunally the way he does didn´t really bring my irritation with him any lower. Sure it´s a great move but still. Is he planning on using Nunally the same way as he used Euhpie?

    To me, Suzaku is just another version of the very instable Shinn Asuka who blames everyone else for his own misstakes and honestly, I´m starting to get very irritated on this.

    So Lelouch made a wrong move and killed Euphie, ever tried to hear his side of the story? No way josé!! You killed my shoot at becoming the ruler of Japan, you will die!!

    I´m bringing that to a really length here as I do know Suzaku started to like Euphie more and more and yeah, he fell in love with her. But his “other side” really pisses me of, a side that will do anything to get his own goals, so killing his father, betraying a dear friend or whatever, he´ll do it.

    Split personality deluxe…

    But I don´t call him evil, just a delusional stupid fucking idiot. Evil is something that you create with your own mind. Being Evil or being a Hero is just a twist of a coin, it´s the same shit anyway.

  31. MT
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    Who has Suzaku killed that was close to him? Most of the people he killed are soliders shooting at him, and I’m not sure that you can argue that he feels a special bond with those. You could say that he killed his father, but we don’t know how close he was with his father. He didn’t kill Euhphie and he wasn’t planning on using her by killing her after marrying her and take power. Where did that come from? Besides, it was Lelouch who killed Euhpie, and then used her actions, which was caused under his geass, as a way to get more support from the Japenese people. Suzuku did ask why Lelouch had to kill Euhphie instead of going along with her plan in the cave scene at the last episode of S1. What was his side of the story? His response was “It’s all in the past, it doesn’t matter anymore.” If that’s all Lelouch had to say after dragging Euhpie’s name through the mud and than killing her, I wasn’t suprised that Suzuku became really pissed off at Lelouch. In fact, after hearing about what he did, I’m sure that Suzuku no longer considers Lelouch a dear friend. I’m sure that if your best friend kidnaps your girlfriend, brainwashes her into commiting a massacre, and than kills her, and later when you question him about his actions, his response is “It’s in the past, it isn’t important anymore”, I’m sure that you wouldn’t consider him you best friend anymore.

  32. Miran
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    I don’t mind if people dislike Suzaku because the character rubs them the wrong way. Looks funny. Is ideologically incompatible with their views. Works for the Evil Empire. Whatever. Perfectly valid opinions.

    The rabid Lelouch fanboys/girls who hate Suzaku just because he opposes Lelouch and dig around for “justification” that he’s evil while making excuses for Lelouch because, oh, hey, the poor dear had a bad childhood and is thus entitled to screw with people however he wants, well, that rubs me a little.

    Nothing that Suzaku has done on a personal or professional level comes even close to Lelouch’s level of asshattery. The fact that Lelouch owns up to it does not suddenly make those actions okay. Neither does it help his cause when he starts acting the anguished victim whenever he is emotionally involved (see: Shirley in Season 1, Nunnally in Ep5) despite screwing with other people’s heads on a regular basis himself. Lelouch doesn’t even care about Japan except as a useful tool for his personal vendetta; comparing his motivations to Suzaku’s is apples and oranges.

    Suzaku does know that he’s not the bright, upstanding moral citizen he would like to be. He’s said it himself before, that he’s a “despicable person”. Nevertheless he tries to do the right thing anyway, and takes the only route open to him after Euphie’s little accident. I’m not saying he’s all clean and shiney, or even an overly likeable character, but his goals and methods are well thought out and in keeping with his character and objectives. He certainly does not deserve the flak of ZomgPoorLuluHowCouldYouYouEvilBastard. If you dislike Suzaku because you like Lelouch, more power to you. But at least admit that as the main reason instead of trying to rationalize it with shakey “logical” arguments.

    For reforming Britannia, I’d like to add this: the official evidence in the form of the Code Geass games (supervised and partially written by the director and scriptwriters) state that without Zero’s interference, the idea would have worked. It’s of course an AU possibility and not in the “anime” canon, but still a little more to go on than “oh but it would never work” based on nothing but speculation. Whether years of second-class citizenry with gradual change for everyone is better than a Russian roulette of who gets blown up in the crossfire and who is lucky to be alive to see the new nation is, of course, a subjective opinion.

    As for the Britannian Empire, by modern sensibilities it is expansionist and evil. Because we live in an era where invading other countries isn’t really kosher with international opinion. Overall, however, a nation exists to protect and expand on the interests of its people, and throughout most of history, the way to help your own people’s interests is to take over the farmland of Those Guys Over The Hill. It’s not morally right, but it is practical.

    It’s not that I particularly like Suzaku or hate Lelouch. I think they’re both very good as plot device but dubiously likeable as actual people. I just feel that relatively few people are willing to look at them with any kind of objectivity because of how cool and anti-authority Zero is.

  33. biankita
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Now, I only watch this show for the senseless violence and the curiosity of how it will end since I’ve watched this anime since episode 1. I no longer have the means to justify what anyone in this anime does – even to myself. I don’t like anyone here anymore.

    Either way, both Suzaku and Lelouch are Machiavellian in their methods so I’d say they’re pretty even – though I really don’t see Suzaku being nearly as smart as Lelouch. Suzaku is hated because he betrayed his friend while his friend believed in him until the end. But then again, Lelouch knew it was Suzaku he was fighting althroughout the season. They’re the same. But I think that the reason why Suzaku is more hated is because he’s justifying the evil things that he does by making himself sound like he will be the savior of Japan while Lelouch just came out straight that he’s just gonna have to be evil. It makes Suzaku more deceptive than Lelouch to the audience. But they’re just playing everyone, right?

    In the end, it would seem that only the innocent dies (Euphie but so what?, innocent bystanders may they be Britannians or Japanese people, etc.) and all the assholes live. The only innocent being kept alive is Shirley and she doesn’t even count because she’s from Ashford.

  34. Posted May 11, 2008 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    I don’t agree with Suzaku’s actions nor do I agree with Lulu sacrificing people to acheive his ends.

    With Suzaku, well, sooner or later he’s gonna realize that the only direction he’s going to end up with is the eradication of Japan. Sure you get your reforms but at a price so great it’s not worth it.

    Lulu is just as evil if not more evil than Suzaku. Remember that he’s Brittanian (I prefer the term Britfaggian but eh.). He too cares not for the rank and file unless they have some use to him. Just like his Brittanian relatives. He may be a bit more tactically astute, but he’s Brittanian at the core.

    I think Euphie would have created an autonomous region for Japan without any bloodshed other than the prior shed blood but she’s now a bullet-ridden corpse no thanks to Lulu.

    Realizing that you’re evil doesn’t make you honest. It’s mere bragging until you show that you have a desire to change.

    Moral of the story: Don’t let the means justify the ends. In the end, you’re no better than your captors.

    (I do know that soldiers have to follow orders and all and well when the enemy shoots at you instead of surrendering peacefully you’ve got no choice. You gave the enemy prior warning. If they don’t wanna accept a peaceful end, may God have mercy on their souls.)

  35. Posted May 11, 2008 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    MT: First of all I suggest you read the whole comment…

    Let´s just say this: I have a bad relationship with my dad, but if he were a general and it would be war I wouldn´t kill him just so that the war could end… which is was Suzaku did. Then creating the “nice” persona that “plays by the rules”.

    The whole thing with Euphie would have been quite nice to watch, but since Lelouch´s geass decided to grow in power a misstake got created. If you did witness how Lelouch reacted to what he did you can see that it was one big freaking misstake. And that he is still tormented by that he used Euphie in that way.

    “First love” remember?

    yeah, Lelouch killed Euphie. Then he started the mourning for her and knew that he had done something he could never replace. But he got over it, Suzaku on the other hand… he went all “oh my god you killed Euphie you evil bastard, now I´m throwing away all the nice guy persona and now I´m out on a fucking killing spree”…

    Instead of trying to think of what Lelouch had to go trough it´s all about him himself, he´ll do anything to “change brittania from within”…

    if someone brainwashed my girlfriend intentionally then well I wouldn´t hold any punches, correct you are. Did Lelouch do that? No. Accident.

    If I have to take a guess on why, Sunrise wanted to kill of numerous persons that were loved by the fans.

    As said, I don´t call Suzaku evil or make a hero out of Lelouch. Simply put both of them are wrong as I find being strongwilled and discussion with an open mind is the completely best way to solve internal problems. That or try to teach the “nobles” better management skills.

  36. Posted May 11, 2008 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    @Jounin
    Indeed independence and self determination is not the goal that Lulu has set. Rather he needs an army for revenge, one that unquestioning follows him and does his bidding. Even if Lulu succeeds is the world that he plans to build better than the one he’s in. Lulu is not in the business of listening to others or earning their support, he’s manipulating them.

    Basically what Lulu is doing is sending people into a meat grinder, and perhaps in the end it will be the kind of victory Haig envisioned, one where he would have the last 1000 men.

    @Blue
    Lulu has loli its name is Kaguya.

    @ZeusIrae
    As I said before Imperialism is a double edged sword those who hate it are usually the ones who were in a position of power. When the British Raj was established the Muslims and Hindus fumed because they were deposed. However the Sikhs and Dalit found life much more tolerable and indeed supported the Raj at various times. We cannot discount the fact that the Sikhs ans Dalit were Indian as well, but foreign over lordship was preferable because native dominion was not better for them. The thing I found about Imperialism is that it can be both a curse and a boon. Hong Kong was under British dominion and most Chinese didn’t like it at first, but in light of the ass hattery of their fellow Chinese during the Warlord Era and the Communist take over letting Whitey call the shots was better being bayoneted as a class enemy or communist sympathizer.

    I seen in Britannia an earlier Rome, Villeta Nu and that mob boss were too swarthy to be Anglo-Saxon Britannians, but they were able to live without much interference though the former lacked the competence to make good on her ambition. Suzaku’s rise was meteoric, but that does not make it impossible for men of competence and ambition to make it to the top. We have evidence of indirect rule as the Kyoto Group was able to conduct their terror activities without omnipresent Britannian surveillance, Cornelia found them distasteful but she had to tolerate them. The fact that there were armed Japanese within their auxiliary forces is not unlike that of the old Roman system of Auxiliaries. Citizenship can be gained but you have to subvert your national identity and adopt an Imperial identity. This is not unlike that of every American where loyalty is direct toward the constitution and not towards the mother country of one’s national origin. The fact that the law could be subverted and exceptions made means that the laws are not iron clad and if you are powerful enough you can ignore the law.

    Even Gandhi tried to work within the British Colonial system at first, and it took him a while to change his ideas. Gandhi achieved an Independent India within in his own life time and he was a mere mortal as well. Humans are strange creatures if you have the will to do something then anything is possible. If you told me in 1839 that a young lawyer with his pacifist doctrine was going to free his people from oppression I would have laughed like a lot of people. But by Jove he did it, Gandhi was not some demi-god he was human just like you just like me. At the time racism and bigotry were okay and the British Empire was still strong, he never gave up and kept fighting his way where others who opted for force failed again and again. Suzaku’s limited goals are not beyond achievement, the fact that he forced Cornelia to re-evaluate her stance on the matter is indicative that it can be done. Change has to start somewhere just because its hard doesn’t mean that force is the answer.

    @Randor
    I think that the ethos of the Britannian identity is not tied to race but an adherence to the doctrine of survival of the fittest. Villetta Nu does not sound remotely Anglo-Saxon or European, and she does look decidedly different from her fellow Britannians. It is possible that her ancestors were numbers at one point, the fact that Britannia can muster vast armies indicates that over time the identity of the areas is subverted and placed under the aegis of Britannia. It would be nigh impossible for Britannia to be ethnically pure and have such vast armies while keeping other groups under their iron fist. I think that Britannia is a more dark version of nations that are made up of different ethnic groups. Like the US. In the US your identity with you ethnic group is subordinated under the obligations of US citizen ship, you become a hyphenated American or for some simply American regardless of race. We assume that the Roman Empire was much less heavy handed, but they too had a violent streak, but in the end to bathe was to be Roman. Even amongst the subject groups there was some discontent but even their successor states tried to claim some of that Roman glory.

    Empire makes us all shudder in fear, but is a nation state that much better? Take a look at the Balkans. Over there are many groups seeking to build their nation states, and in that process they have not been playing nice with one another. I think that it is wrong to accept that the idea of a nation state is automatically better. Some nation states do want to be ethnically pure, and to achieve that their methods do not differ much form the behavior of Imperial powers, and at times the cruelty for the sake of a nation state can exceed the brutality of conquest.

    Japan’s situation now is basically after having failed to see off the first invasion can only now choose their overlords. They cannot hope to be independent with their country in ruins because after expelling the brtiannians they will be a tempting target for another super power that is just as bad. Their situation parallels that of the last of the Caliphate of Cordoba, they have a choice in who becomes their conqueror, the North Africans or the Spanish. So the question becomes what would you rather be a camel herder in Morocco, or a pig farmer in Castile? Given that the military situation was untenable Japan should have sought cover under either the Chinese or Britannian umbrella rather than tough it out and hope that they get ignored. Again which is preferable protectorate status with an intact nation and people or independence on a pile of rubble and corpses?

    @Hotarubi
    I think that Lulu is just as bad as Suzaku even if professes to be evil it does not lessen the crimes he commits. Lulu is like a lot of revolutionaries bright young and utterly convinced that he knows best. However we all know how they end up in old age.

    @wait321
    The point I am trying to make is that Britannia has behaved much like contemporary nation states. They do what every nation does at some level they are just more blatant about it. It is easy to condemn them as evil because they make no pretense to the contrary, but if you compare their behavior to that of other nations, Russia, the US, the UK, China, etc. Is what they are doing all that different? Take a look at the history of your nation, and you will probably see periods that you nation was not always in the right. Does this then make your nation itself evil with the privileged and the oppressed? Britannia is just that a nation state headed by a monarch, they are no more evil than any other nation. They are a moral and not some monolithic evil entity that is 100% bad.

    @Anonymous
    Lulu owning up to things? Don’t be silly when did he take responsibility to for what happened to Euphie? She was innocent, and he is guilty of the massacre that followed even if it was not as planned. Instead of telling the truth he casts Euphie as the evil one and frames her for what happened to gain the blind loyalty of the Japanese. Tell me how this is responsible and not hypocritical?

    Suzaku has stayed true to himself in trying to make things work no matter the odds no matter the hardship. He knows that racism will not end and he sought only to force the Britannians to review their own beliefs. Cornelia had to reassess her relationship with him. Even Freaking Guilford had to set aside his ill will. Just because a people are racist does not mean you should not try and get along with them or try an change their views. Racism was acceptable in ages past it still haunts us now, but does that mean we should not try and get along? Should black people just go back to Africa because the US has racist people? You are not going to defeat racism with guns. The process of understanding has to start some where and at least Suzaku is trying to fight racism while Lulu plays on their xenophobia and us vs them mentality.

    Suzaku is no Gandhi, but even Gandhi had to start some where and Gandhi did not reach for a gun to make the British understand him even if they beat him and were willing to shoot at him. The British Empire was just as bad as Britannia, yet one man dared to hope that he could free his people without guns. What was his legacy? Take a look at India today. If people stopped trying to fight racism then we would all be in ethnically pure states hating each other and killing each other for land and resources.

    @Calawain
    Oh how little you know me… :P

    @manga
    Nunnally actually wanted to carry on Euphie’s good work, and I think Suzaku knows full well what Lulu is doing.

    Lulu is just using the Japanese as tools, he let Euphie take all the blame for the massacre so he could play on the racism of the Japanese. Lulu is promoting an us vs them mindset that is essentially racist. Every dreamer has some delusions, but that does not stop them from hoping. Genbu wanted his people to all die with him, so was Genbu right in demanding that an entire people perish for his failure to defend them? Suzaku has dared to dream and like a lot of dreamers he is going to fail a lot of times before he gets it right. He lost everything when Euphie died his hopes his dreams, now all that is left is to clear Euphie’s name and get revenge on her killer. Suzaku’s rhetoric is not longer about peace and justice, it is now merely about the denial of Lulu’s revolution.

    What is the point of knowing that it was an accident when the real crook gets away scot free and hands off blame on some one else. If some one you cared a bout got killed and then framed for something they did not do I am sure you’d want revenge as well, regardless of whether or not it was an accident. By using Euphie as a scapegoat Lulu doesn’t care about what he did, only about what he can get out of Euphie’s death.

    @MT
    In deed people change and for Suzaku Lulu of his memories is dead replaced by a man who killed his sister and framed her for a massacre she did not commit.

    @Mirian
    Precisely Britannia is doing what all nations do, they only evil in our eyes because they are blatant. It’s interesting to note that the other media portrays things slightly differently and hopefully when this is all over that a more consistent canon can be established.

    @biankita
    Indeed the good die young.

    @DrmChsr0
    I don’t think that the eradication of the Japanese people is going to be the final out come under Suzaku but rather a hybrid identity of Japanese as Britannians. They do have cosplay and risque school festivals after all… ;)

    Lulu is basically as bad as the Emperor it’s just that Lulu hasn’t gotten a throne yet.

  37. Anon
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    I think the reason many people has a hard time not hating Suzaku is because we see Code Geass from Lulu’s point of view. It’s easier to sympathize with Lulu since we know him well thanks to the numerous monologue explaining how he thinks. While for Suzaku, not so much. We can only pick up so much from Suzaku’s behavior. Some people managed to pick up Suzaku’s thought, say when he was hesitating to shot enemies (as mentioned by a couple of people above), many people don’t, because we are just not that good at reading others without the ever so convenient monologues.

    Say in episode 2 of CG R2, where Lulu and Suzaku shot each other. Lulu attempted to headshot Suzaku, while Suzaku shot Lulu’s gun down (with his godlike reflexes, I refuse to call that a fluke). They had just proclaimed that their friendship still intact during the last phone call past Euphie’s death. It’s pretty obvious who’s the backstabber and who’s the friend. But then again, this is something that I personally pick up, other viewers can interpret it in many other ways, because Suzaku simply does not have monologues to make his case.

    While viewers can easily emphatize with Lulu being “betrayed” by Suzaku, how Suzaku feels is totally up to how the viewers interpret his actions. Say, in my eyes, Suzaku still considered Lulu as a friend and merely aimed at Lulu’s gun despite his rage and revenge. And yet he was totally betrayed by Lulu, who tried to headshot him. That was the last straw for Suzaku. To me the big question is that if Lulu didn’t try to kill him for real, would Suzaku sell Lulu? But again other people can interpret it differently (assuming they do try to understand Suzaku rather than just dissing him).

    I like both Lulu and Suzaku, Lulu moreso because we get to know him better in CG. At CG, most of Suzaku’s feelings about him being in Brittanian is up to individual interpretations, we see it from Lulu’s POF after all.

    On another aspect, I have to say that I agree with your opinion that Britannia is conducted in a for-profit business like manner, that is survival for the fittest and the lack of law and justice. The higher the rank, the less racist and the more performance oriented the military personnel is. Even in CG we can see that the racist ones tend to be less an adversary to Lulu. So yeah, the system works, but it’s too dependent on chaos and conflicts. The lack of law and order means Britannia fails miserably as a country, at least to me.

  38. cdr
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

    I think the main problem people have with Suzaku is he’s a hypocritical fanatic toward nationalism, but the biggest problem I personally have is that everyone else in the show treats him like they’re dealing with a logically thinking rational person. His actions from S1 don’t even come close to portraying him as that. The mind boggles.

  39. ichibanluckycat
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

    Speaking of Britannian governments and laws, is Code Geass somehow poking at Chinese politics (in reality)?

    In the anime, the Chinese Federation is united under a single monarch, but really the eunuchs (or cabinet of highest-ranking officials) pull the strings. Li XINGKE, the ambitious soldier, however, displays a hate of their corruption and seeks to “cleanse” it from within, of course by killing that annoying stereotype -of-a-Chinese-man – And from Episode 6, it seems like the Chinese Fed. has really gone old school, back to the ancient roots, with the ancient capital of Luoyang and their Beijing-opera/geisha costumes.

    It might not seem plausible for SUNRISE to carry any political messages within their shows, but then again, Code Geass does get into a little more Marxism and Darwinism than one would like in a light-toned mecha animE.

  40. Jounin
    Posted May 11, 2008 at 11:41 pm | Permalink

    To keep this up-to-date with ep6 or R2, it looks like becoming Governor-General was something Nunnally wanted as a way to continue Euphie’s work. Suzaku’s involvement seems only to involve the phone call to try to bring Lelouch out. Suzaku prioritizes Nunnally’s safety over capturing Zero so it safe to say she is someone dear to him that he is trying to obtain power to protect. We will have to see if this translates to respect when she gives an order that may cost him another chance to capture Zero. This isn’t going to stop Suzaku haters, however. I was reading the Momento blog and noticed this in the summary, “Suzaku takes Nunnaly in Lancelot’s arm, he gives off a satisfied look as he sees Zero falling into the air.” One, I don’t think Suzaku was smiling in that scene; and two, I think Suzaku was saying how now was not the time to capture Zero since he had to protect Nunnally. The lengths that some go to justify their hatred…

    And now for those of you who use the word hypocrite to describe Suzaku… From your posts, it seems that you are saying that he says one thing (help the Japanese) and does another (serves Britannia). Stripey’s post in his blog points out that many confuse the purpose a person strives for with the power he serves. Just because Britannia as a whole is evil, does that make every Britannian (Millay, Rivalz, Shirley, Euphie, Nunnally) evil? Some say that Suzaku can’t change anything from within, but isn’t attempting to honorable enough? We already see some changes in attitude in ep21 where Ashford Academy is open to Japanese during the festival (possibly because of Suzaku’s presence) and that many come to see Suzaku who is an inspiration to them. Also may I point you to another definition of hypocrite?

    hyp·o·crite –noun
    1. a person who pretends to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that he or she does not actually possess, esp. a person whose actions belie stated beliefs.
    2. a person who feigns some desirable or publicly approved attitude, esp. one whose private life, opinions, or statements belie his or her public statements.

    From my previous posts, Lelouch fits this definition quite well. He states as his Zero persona that he fights for justice but goes behind the scenes and Geass and/or kills people to obtain some benefit, protect his identity, or he has no use for in his quest for revenge. Examples are ep8 when he orders the JLF colonel to kill himself because he is not useful (and attacking Zero with a sword), ep13 when he destroys the JLF tanker to serve his purpose, ep23 when he makes that speech. Where is the hatred for Lelouch being a hypocrite? Be fair now…

    But let me leave with an interesting thought exercise:

    Suzaku’s goal was to become recognized by Britannians for his deeds and gain respect for the Japanese. As a grunt, this would have been a long and hard slog and would have tested Suzaku’s resolve. The Shinjiku incident that Lelouch starts gives Suzaku a stage to show off his power in Lancelot and subsequent battles add up to even convince the stubborn Cornelia of his worth (her two knights were quick to recognize Suzaku’s skills). Lelouch killing Clovis also causes Suzaku to be accused for the crime, resulting in Euphie intervening to clear his name and the two meeting. She assigns him to Ashford where Suzaku and Lelouch meet again and their friendship warms the student body into accepting Suzaku. Euphie falls in love and appoints Suzaku her knight, giving him a huge boost in recognition that the older generations have a hard time with, but the younger generation in Ashford have no issue with this because they know him much better. After Euphie’s death, Suzaku captures Lelouch and drags him to the Emperor to earn a Rounds title. Suzaku breaking so many barriers so quickly is in large part due to Lelouch’s actions.

  41. Posted May 12, 2008 at 12:05 am | Permalink

    Crusader: Ouch, that really hurts, not.

    Why does Nunally want to carry out Euphies work? Simple because they were able to meet in Season 1.

    And are you really trying to say that Lelouch coldhearted killed Euphie with no regretss? Oh my, take a good long look at Lelouch during the scenes again.

    Lelouch´s greatest weapon is his ability to think of ways out of trouble. This one time he screwed up big time, even worse than with Mao.

    Yes, Lelouch is promting a war against Brittania and one of the reasons for this is so that he can create a world for Nunally, to achieve that goal he will do anything. Were it not for his screwup he would have had that perfect place for him and Nunally to live in already. So why kill of Euhpie? To get another season…

    I´d love for Sunrise to make a Code Geass Alternative where Lelouch doesn´t screw up with Euphie. Just to see how they´d end it in a nice way instead of going “oh we have to kill alot of people”

    Regarding what I would do if someone close to me got killed but I know of the truth. I´d love to talk with the person who indeed did kill my sweetheart of, then depending on the answer… well that is another story.

    But back to Suzaku, what do you think he meant when he said “Nunally will be my…”
    Is that something a person should do?

    And the most logical reason would be that he would kill Lelouch yes, that is what the whole builtup in the last episode of season 1 said. But no, he shoots the pistol out of Lelouchs hands, takes him to the Emperor and in exchange wants to be a Knights or Round…

    He could have gotten the same result if had brought the dead body. But then, once again we wouldn´t have had a second season…

    Suzaku´s way of thinking scares me. Doing anything to achieve your goals, wether to use your old friends sister as a trap or sucking up to the people who treat you like shit.

    But then again, when we´re talking about Suzaku, where was the exact point where he got shot in the first ep? Stomache? Pretty bad wound anyway and then he comes back unharmed? Something is fishy right there.

    And once again, Suzaku to me with his behaviour is worse than Lelouch. He´s “oh I´m so friendly with you” and when you turn around he stabs you in the back… His father got to know this, Lelouch also did.

    While we´re at that point, so far Lelouch hasn´t done that. Yes I know he went away at the most crucial time, but why? To search for Nunally, without her all his work would be for nothing.

    And talking about Nunally, I sincerely hope that Suzaku isn´t as dumb so that he´ll think that the other members of Brittania will let Nunally live for a long time? Then why allow her to be the new govenor of Japan? Simply put, he´s using her as a tool.

    Lelouch didn´t want to use his Geass on Suzaku because he was a friend. Neither did he want to use it on Euphie.

    Using the japanese? Maybe in the first season when he started out, not now. That much is certain. Unless Sunrise just wants to show us that part of him for now… that is somethign we´ll have to wait and see.

    But back to the topic. Suzaku isn´t evil, I just can´t stand his actions and if I haven´t said it before, it´s the same with Lelouch. Violence only breeds more violence

  42. Shippoyasha
    Posted May 12, 2008 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    I’d rather not even bother reading the blind hate of the Suzaku haters. Really, he is an ‘amoral’ character and I totally agree with Crusader. In the same light, Lelouch is just as much a ‘moral fag’ and a ‘hypocrite’ as any other. It just happens to be that he is the underdog (actually, Suzaku is too, for trying to change Britannia from the inside, which is a monumental task at best).

    Also, some say that they’re troubled by Suzaku’s willingness to do anything to help further his goals. Okay, so it’s like Lelouch isn’t doing the same and worse, am I right? Lelouch has blood on his hands just the same.

    I think I know precisely who the true ‘moral fags’ are just from all the blind Suzaku hate and putting Lelouch on a pedestal.

  43. Posted May 12, 2008 at 12:59 am | Permalink

    @Anon
    Your are right much of this series is told from Lulu’s point of view and he is not a reliable narrator. As he does not even know who it was that killed his family we might have to question if his mother was really assassinated. The Emperor has command over memories, and thus far we do not know if it can be used more than once. If Charles can use his geass more than once this will complicate matters immensely.

    Hehe Britannia is like the Combine from half life, there worse than blood thirsty invaders, they are a corporation. ;)

    @ichibanluckycat
    I am not sure what they heck they are trying to say about China with the Chinese Federation. I guess we will have to wait and see.

    @Jounin
    Crises demand extraordinary change. WWII did much to boost the civil rights movement of various minority groups in the US. Much of it was due to those who actually found a measure equality on the front lines. When bullets start flying race is irrelevant, onlty the ability to shoot straight matters.

    @manga
    Lulu cried in C.C. lap for thigh meat, and what is the point of his regret if he never confesses his crime to the people he wronged? Again if Lulu really cared about Euphie he would at least have cleared her name in the massacre, but he did not. It’s like how O.J. Simpson got away with murder, we all know he did, and even if he has exorcised his own demons he has escaped justice for what he did. Fact is even if Lulu cared, he put his own needs before Euphie. That’s not remorse.

    Being an adult means owning up to your mistakes, every one of them, Lulu shifted blame on an innocent. How the hack is this taking responsibility for what he did?

    Nunnally will be Suzaku’s waifu…

    Suzaku was by then consumed by the need for revenge against his erstwhile friend. Lulu is using his people, constructing a cult around himself, he killed his own sister and then proceeded to place the blame squarely on her shoulders. Lulu is not a nice guy, he is not much of friend if he’s off killing people and referring to Suzaku as just another piece in his game. In Season one it was all a game to Lulu it still is a game him because Lulu risked the lives of his men on a personal errand, he did not ask for their help, he ordered it.

    Suzaku does not kill his dad until Genbu started demanding that all Japanese die with him. You think that Genbu was a sane man a good man? Only meglomaniacs anbd cult leaders demand that their people die with them. If your father demanded that you and your mother and the rest of the family die with him are you going to an hero yourself so eagerly? Suzaku did ask why and he got slapped across the room for it, negotiations were by then over. It was either Genbu or the life of every Japanese. What is one life compared to that of millions? By what right does one person have to demand that a million die for his failure? Again this “to the death” nonsense is the drug of the insane or the incredibly naive.

    Lulu lied consistently to every one including Suzaku, and in the end why the hell should Suzaku believe a compulsive liar like Lulu. As far as Suzaku was concerned Lulu was already capable of killing his sister and lying to everyone around him including his so called friends. What amends did Lulu make to Shirley for slaying her father? He erased her memories and never did take full responsibility for it. Lulu is demanding yet more blood be shed for eh sake of his revenge, Lulu has dragged an entire people into a personal struggle in which even Lulu does not know the face of his mother’s killer. We have only our suspicions that it was the Emperor but we have no definitive proof. Cornelia did not know and she tried, if Lulu had only trusted his siblings and not be a douche bag he could have done things much more discreetly and without nearly as much blood. So how many more bystanders like Euphie will have to die before Lulu gets his revenge? Is the cost worth it for the sake of one boy who cannot even begin to understand why his mother died that day?

    Lulu took from Suzaku the last thing he had going in his life, to kill Lulu is no longer enough. Suzaku will have his revenge, and he will make Lulu suffer long before he delivers the death blow. Quake in terror for those who dare to perfect the art of vengeance are terrible indeed. Suzaku has a clear picture of what Lulu did Lulu is seeking revenge without knowing who it was that killed his mum. Suzaku knows his target he will kill Lulu, Lulu on the other hand kills blindly, Lulu thinks he knows everything when he cannot even begin to understand the circumstances of his mum’s death.

    @Shippoyasha
    You know you could interpret Suzaku’s delivery of Lulu into Charles’ hands as taking a disobedient trouble making son to meet his punishment. Like any good father Chare’s punishes his wayward son for stirring up trouble, rather than kill him.

  44. Posted May 12, 2008 at 2:44 am | Permalink

    I can understand why Suzaku had to kill his father, but then again, murder isn’t always the way out.

    Since there’s more than one way to skin a cat, there’s more than one solution to any problem. Personally, I’d have usurped power and told Japan to stand down and welcome their new overlords, and then secretly exile my father to China. or the other way round.

    The past will eventually come to bite Suzaku in the ass. Once the Japanese realize it was he who killed their beloved leader, they will not be amused. Even if Suzaku gets the Brittanians to recognize the Japanese as equals.

    Now if you excuse me, I’m going off to cry in my little corner now. Euphie was my favorite character in Code Geass.

  45. Posted May 12, 2008 at 4:34 am | Permalink

    Crusader: What would change if he started confessing about how he had this absolute power that makes you obey him?

    Nothing. Suzaku wouldn´t hate him any less, that´s for sure.

    If a person picks up a gun and starts killing people it´s kinda hard to “redeem” that person later… or if someone commits acts of terrorism… same thing really.

    When did I say that Lelouch was a nice guy? he isn´t you know… neither is Suzaku.

    Aha, that was one thing I missed with Suzaku´s dad. Still not something I´d expect anyone to do.

    If he said that I would assume that he would have a really good reason. But then again, I´m not finished living yet so I would try to survive.

    You talk about being naive, but that´s what Suzaku is. “I´ll change the ways from the inside”… And eving having Nunally become the governor… he´s really naive.

    What would have changed if Lelouch had said: “I´m sorry Suzaku, I didn´t mean to but I accidentally used Geass on Euphie, that´s the reason she started killing the japanese”?

    My guess: nothing. As said, Lelouch is still tormented by that fatal misstake, as he is with the mistake with Shirley.

    Talking about Shirley, she was pretty mindfucked by Mao when Lelouch erased her memories… given the opportunity that Mao never happened, things would have been different. And yes, he is sorry for what happened to Sheryl´s father, but when she hugs him you don´t really say: “Yo bitch I´m Zero and I was responsible for the plan that killed your dad”…

    That would have changed that Sheryl would have started to hate Lelouch and then she´d probably have to be geassed so that she´ll keep her mouth shut.

    Kinda nice that you are saying that Lelouch should have gone directly to his siblings when he is supposed to be dead. Great move… and if he could have, don´t you think he would have? But what kind of show would that have been? 26 eps of talking isn´t really something anyone would want to watch.

    But a big freaking war where a small group goes up against a whole empire with a genius as the strategist is going to be watched by millions and millions.

    Lelouch took Euphie out of her misery since she didn´t want to do what she was doing. Act of mercy you know. Same with Shirley, he erased her memory so she wouldn´t have to suffer anymore than she already had.

    Suzaku only sees the very top of the iceberg while Lelouch who has been there from the beginning knows a helluva lot more about why things turned out the way it did.

    But as said, neither of them are “good” or “evil” and basically the way they do things suck. But without them and their actions, it would be a really boring show.

  46. Karisu
    Posted May 12, 2008 at 5:34 am | Permalink

    What I don’t fucking get is why you can’t like both Lelouch and Suzaku. I think both characters are great, and depending on the situation, I root for one over the other. Towards the end of last season I was 100% behind Suzaku, atm, I’m behind Lelouch.

  47. Anon
    Posted May 12, 2008 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    @manga: While you can say “Suzaku only sees the very top of the iceberg”, I can say that Lulu too, only sees the very top of the iceberg called Suzaku. CG is told from Lulu’s point of view after all. It’s biased in favor of Lulu. We can’t expect Suzaku to know everything that viewers know, just as Lulu doesn’t know everything about Suzaku.

    Otherwise, yeah I agree that he can’t admit that he accidentally geassed Euphie. Not in that situation at the very least. It would come about as making pathetic excuses and Lulu would come about as irresponsible. It’s not in Lulu’s personality to begin with. Especially since deep down Lulu accepts Euphie’s tragedy as fully his responsibility, by killing her personally and whole-heartedly mourning for her afterwards.

  48. wait321
    Posted May 12, 2008 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    @Crusader
    It doesn’t matter if Britannia is like old governments. How many dictators gave up their power willingly? You’re just proving that force needs to be used to change Britannia. In Britannia, anyone with power can maim, rape, or kill anyone of lesser power on a whim without consequence. Even if Euphie made her special zone, any emperor can demolish it at any time. That’s why Lelouch’s rebellion has a better chance of creating a lasting solution. Suzaku needs to aim for the position of emperor, force him to change the feudal government, or start a mass civil rights movement.

  49. Posted May 12, 2008 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    @DrmChsr0
    True murder is not the best solution, however death does solve all problems. Not be best way to solve problems, just the quickest.

    @manga
    Ninja edits Sheryl to Shirley.

    Lulu mourns for but an hour and hardly even pays his respects to the graves of those he murdered for his vaunted quest. Lulu basically a robber in a robbery gone wrong kills a person and then weeps as he helps himself to their worldly possessions. Sure he never meant to kill them, but it doesn’t stop him from getting what he wants out of it. That is the extent of his guilt.

    Suzaku is naive he’s a dreamer, he is no Gandhi. However if you told me in at the beginning of the 20th Century that this Indian lawyer and his pacifist notions of civil disobedience were going to end colonial rule in India against the premier colonial power I would have laughed as would have you. You think racism was scaled back because some one started shooting the racists? No that honor belongs to the “naive” dreamers who preached racial harmony in the face of violence with out resorting to violent measures themselves. Just because some one is what we call naive does not mean that their failure is assured, it takes a special kind of tenacity and bravery to carry through your high minded ideals.

    Lulu doesn’t see any more than Suzaku does, Suzaku had to endure the racism first hand, Lulu never knew what it was like. Lulu knows about as much as Suzaku, Lulu doesn’t even know who killed his mum, yet he goes about killing wantonly because he thinks he knows who the killers were.

    @Karisu
    Go ahead no one is stopping you.

    @wait321
    Britannia is not just like old governments, what they do is being done by nations today, just less blatantly. In fact your government might be doing something similar in someplace you never even heard of. Will you then take up arms to destroy them will you cast aside the lifestyle that they provide all that easily? Don’t be so naive to think that a democracy is incapable of reasoned brutality, they are.

    Lulu has proven that his solution for everything is using his geass. That hardly means that if he becomes ruler of the world that he will be any better, if some one disagrees with him what is there to stop him from geassing that man into killing himself? Lulu’s rebellion is based around a cult of personality not mind you informed participation, so long as he lives their violence has direction, but when he dies all that will be left will be scripture written by Kallen. Those who believe the most will take it all verbatim and soon we shall see something akin to the Red Guards rampaging about calling for destruction of non believers. Lulu has proven himself underhanded and ruthless what makes you think that such habits will go away once he seizes the throne?

  50. Posted May 12, 2008 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    Crusader: Thanks for the edit :)

    Well, in that sense Suzaku doesn´t mourn either…
    and I do know that Suzaku mourns the death of Euphie, as well as Lelouch does. The show isn´t showing it, that´s all.

    racism isn´t scaled down. Even if Nunally creates an utopia for the japanese it´ll be pretty bad… once again we´re back to Lelouch´s screwup with Euphie and how that would have been the best ending and that would have meant no second season.

    Lelouch didn´t have to experience the racism first hand, but since he isn´t a big britanian ruler anymore well…

    You know what all this has started? I want to watch the first season again. Hell I must lurk trough my collection to see if I can find it.

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