Ah, we are finally at the end of a great series, Bubblegum Crisis. Or are we? After finishing BGC 8, I was left with a sense of emptiness and thought, "That's it? That's the ending?" And yup, that's all there is. However, Bubblegum Crisis was originally intended to be about 13 episodes, but a legal dispute between Youmex and Artmic, who co-owned BGC, cut the series short by 5 episodes. That's probably why you don't get a feeling that BGC has been sufficiently concluded. All you really get is a feeling that the episode turned out well but that nothing significant has been wrapped up (kind of like a Transformers or G.I. Joe episode). However, if you keep in mind that there were five more episodes planned, it really isn't so bad. After all, Scoop Chase still has that great BGC music! An interesting fact to note is that the closing song, "Chase The Dream," is sung by Kinuko Oomori, who also doubles as Priss's seiyuu. (She also sings the opening, "Bye Bye My Crisis," along with the seiyuu of the other Knight Sabers.) Starting with Revenge Road (ep. 4), Kinuko was not allowed to sing any more solo songs due to a contract conflict with a record company. However, "Chase the Dream" was recorded with her new band, Silk, and it is truly fitting for her to both start and complete Bubblegum Crisis.
BGC 8 marks a change in the feel and the focus of the series. The opening to BGC 1 is very dark and bleak, which is a huge contrast with the bright and cheery atmosphere of Scoop Chase's intro. I found it an uplifting change, and the episode is more light-hearted and cheerful on the whole. It is a truly welcome change from all the heartache and sadness from the Sylvie and Anri affair. Scoop Chase also makes some changes in the Knight Sabers' enemies, ostensibly to keep the mood cheerful. The boomers no longer look as menacing, and they have discarded that creepy blue metal armor. Even the head bad guy has changed. The new antagonist is a researcher named Miriam, who works for Genom but has plans to start his own company with his inventive genius, eventually taking over Genom's share of the market.
Contributing to the different feel of Scoop Chase is a new character that the title of BGC 8 derives itself from. In town visiting her uncle, Leon's chief, is Lisa Vanette, a young high school girl with the ambition to become a news photographer. Unfortunately for the Knight Sabers, she plans to catapult herself into a career by uncovering the true identities of our four favorite vigilantes! To make things worse, Nene is stuck with the job of baby-sitting Lisa, which places Lisa in close proximity to Nene at all times. I find it interesting that the pressure in this episode comes from the possibility that the Knight Sabers will have their cover blown. All the other episodes revolve around killing somebody/something or trying to keep someone alive. It's not that that type of suspense gets old, it's just that I liked seeing the change in pace. I especially liked how this episode focuses more on Nene than the other Knight Sabers. Priss, Sylia, and Linna all had their episodes that revolved around how they handled events, and it was high time that they devoted an episode to the Goddess of Kawaii. :-)
Although some people criticize Scoop Chase for its change in atmosphere, claiming that it ruins the series by "kid-ifying" itself, I feel that the change in Scoop Chase is merely a change in the pace of the series. Many series have this, and they are not criticized for their mood shifts. All in all, it is a true tragedy that Bubblegum Crisis was so beset with legal problems. It would have been interesting to see how the final 5 episodes turned out for the Knight Sabers.