An anime original character loosely based on one from the source manga makes her debut in this action filled episode. With their top ace grounded, the mercenaries at Area 88 receive a large surprise when a fighter sweep goes wrong. Forcefully inserting herself into the all male base, a brash newcomer finds her abundant self confidence tested in the lethal skies.
The greatest strength of Area 88 lies not in its action sequences, but in its character development. A third of the way into the series and it had already introduced a good number of unique individuals, but lacked a strong female. Wanting to rectify that, the writer and director of the show decided to bring in a new pilot. It’s a well timed introduction given Shin is grounded while waiting for his new fighter.
Before the opening credits roll, a tense situation is depicted with the commander of the base, Saki, listening to the combat chatter while watching the radar screen. One of the flights has gotten into a furball and used all their ammunition up. Kim, the young boy flying the Sea Harrier FRS.1, is in trouble and unable to shake the MiG-21 on his tail.
Post credits, things look worse as a warning of a bogey entering the area is immediately followed by a radar warning receiver going off. That indicates a fighter radar has gone into padlock mode to lock a target for a guided missile. Kim prepares to die as the missile streaks in from the unfamiliar plane.