KanColle, on steroids:
Robots, aliens, warships, and magical girls all meet in Arpeggio of Blue Steel! Basically, if KanColle and Strike Witches had a baby Arpeggio would be the result. The best aspects of robotic warcraft and magical girls from those two Anime are on display in Arpeggio; gynoids (“Mental Models”) control powerful alien vessels, known as the “Fleet of Fog,” that take the form of various 20th Century warships (mainly Japanese).
The main character here is a starfish-loving loli gynoid named Iona, who controls the overridden Fog submarine taking the form of the Japanese I-401. Her “heel turn” isn’t revealed until the movie Cadenza, but upon making contact with Chihaya Gunzou — her only directive upon being slate-cleaned is to find and then unquestioningly obey this man — virtually every single Mental Model-driven Fog vessel who fights her either dies or does a heel turn themselves.
I’m glad to see that Iona and Gunzou both remind me a lot of similar protagonists from prior Spotlights: Hibiki and Genjuuro from Symphogear, Akane from Vividred, and Miyafuji from Strike Witches. They’d rather try to reach a mutual understanding with their foes, but will still take up arms and fight if they must. It’s no wonder so many Fog turned Good after facing the “Blue Steel” team! Also: Happy endings! Yay!
One can only hope a second season is in the works here….