There’s something amazing about extended sequences with minimal dialogue like this that enhances the emotions tenfold. Whether it’s for the serenity of Aiura’s first episode, or the depravity of Popee the Performer, or the psychological devastation of Texhnolyze, the things that aren’t said speak so much louder than the things that are. In the Leaning Tower episode of Armor Hunter Mellowlink, that emotion is fear.
In this episode, the hunter is himself hunted. Being stalked by a faceless foe in an upended spaceship that stands tall like a skyscraper with its innards built sideways, gravity itself has become Mellowlink’s enemy. As shots are fired from the end of a now-vertical hallway below, a grenade is dislodged and falls from above. Wire traps in this disorienting environment become even harder to avoid. In the deathly silence, every movement could betray his location, and in the darkness, his pursuer could be just upon him but still remain out of sight. Or even worse, rather than following Mellowlink at all, he could be sitting in the control room.
Elevators conspire to crush Mellow, but he barely manages to escape, forced into a large enclosure filled with stationary scopedogs. Could the enemy be hiding in wait behind any of these armored troopers? Could he be sitting inside one, waiting for Mellow to come near enough? A figure darts up the stairs towards a door, Mellow fires and misses, and the man is gone. Before Mellow can begin to give chase, there’s a noise. In silence like this, a noise is never a welcome sign. Light streams in, the floor begins to move, and the supports holding the scopedogs in place release as the entire room slowly angles downward to the outside. As Mellow begins to slide down the slope, held in place only by the bayonet of his rifle, so too do the mechanical beasts begin their gravity-inspired march to the ground far below, threatening to trample the helplessly immobilized Mellow, to force him to join their suicidal parade.
Turning his gaze back upwards to begin his climb, he realizes that it was not the last. One final mech stares him down; this puny human is all that stands between its towering mass and the earth it so wishes to reach. The groan of metal on metal fills the chamber as the scopedog slides inch by inch off of the small pegs that hold it in place. In an instant, the tension snaps, and all Mellow can do is let go as the possessed green mass above him begins its tumbling free fall.
In other words, scopedogs are the most moe of all robots.