Really quick dump of a few things I've picked up from poking around, in no particular order.
It looks like Kanata's the viewpoint character for all of the novels, not just the first one. Considering that he's a bit obnoxious, I think maybe having him around would make "Invincible Mama" better. (Most things would...)
Anyway, the story he first shows up in, Majou no Houkoku takes place sometime after ep. 30. (But presumably before 32, since that's the next novel?) So the team knows who Mirai is. Kanata's a trainee working to join GUYS. He's opinionated and a little stuck up (you get a little bit of that in AD, like with his comment on how laid-back and easy Formation Yamato was), and thinks... Well, let's just say he has a really low opinion of the main characters. Mirai in particular he thinks is a dimwit, but he's also not impressed with Teppei's monster figure collection. These are not the crack professionals he was expecting and it seems he kinda looks down his nose at them.
I don't know a lot about the story itself, but it has something to do with an alien life form that's shaped like a giant pencil showing up. (So I guess this is "The Evil Rod's Warning"?) GUYS' weaponry does nothing against it, METEOR doesn't scratch it, and even Mebius gets nowhere with it. From what I can gather, the people who sent the rod did so as a warning about METEOR. This intrigues me more than words can say, since that's another plot point they more or less dropped on the floor. (Why is that time limit there? Uh... because those are the rules? And why are the rules there? Uh... because it's dangerous? If it's that dangerous, why use it even for that one minute? Good points all, and never addressed again.)
No idea what happens to the rod, or what the warning is. Alas. This is what I get for not buying the magazine it ran in. I'm assuming these will be complied into a single book at some point in time, and when it is it shall be MINE. But considering the latest volume just came out a month or two ago, I'm guessing that it probably won't be compiled that soon. I'm thinking of seeing if my local Kino can get the magazine in for the latest one, since I'm pretty darn curious about this now.
The author writing it has won several awards, including the Naoki award for best young author. That's pretty darn prestigious. (And referenced/satirized in Kodomo no Omocha. Sana's mother being the winner of the Aoki award.) The three episodes he did are his first screenplays. He's best known as a novelist, but apparently is an Ultraman fan.
Random things picked up:
- Mirai encounters melon pan again. He may even get to eat it this time. ... Or, come to think of it, probably not. The melon pan shows up in "Solitary Paradise", so the comment I read was probably a reference to that. Oddly, someone was commenting about Aya, and how people from Kobe would call melon pan "sunrise". I find this puzzling, since my favorite bakery (in Kyoto station) has both sunrise and melon pan, and they're not exactly the same. Sunrise doesn't have the melon flavoring. (Melon pan is vastly superior in my mind, though I will pick up sunrise as spare food supplies for the day since it keeps well, and will tolerate a certain amount of abuse being carried around in one's bag -- and I learned early on to always carry emergency rations or else one ends up starving to death in the middle of nowhere because one's friends were too short-sighted to stop for lunch at lunchtime, rather than waiting until 3 PM, when one was in, well, the middle of nowhere.) It is, however, not particularly flavorful in my mind. Or mouth.)
- I guess Mirai ends up riding the train from Tokyo to Sendai (about 2 1/2 hours away on the Bullet Train) just because he liked riding the train. Ryuu ends up having to go pick him up and is all "What are you, an elementary school kid???"
Kanata is described as "twisted" (could also mean "perverse", come to think of it), or a little messed in the head. More than one person has commented that he's not at all like the other people who have shown up in this series, who (with the exception of Hirukawa) are all bascially nice people. (Yeah, George and Ryuu need to pull their heads out... but their hearts are basically in the right place, even if they've got a short fuse.) Kanata's father was killed by an alien, and he's got a grudge against them. Not sure if it changes, but when he first shows up his dream is to rid the Earth of all aliens, and I'm guessing the reason he wants to be in GUYS isn't some pansy "protect the people of Earth" stuff, it's so he can kick some alien ass. (I didn't see that stated explicitly anywhere, but based on everything I read, it would be pretty logical an assumption.) Details are sketchy, but he does figure out who Mirai is. (I think for some reason Mirai transforms in front of him.) Sadly, I've found no information on how/if his opinions change after that. I'm assuming that when he meets up with Mirai in AD they recognize each other from before. Someone mentioned that Mirai kind of ends up acting as a sempai to him.
I have to admit, I'm kind of getting to like Kanata. He's annoying, but manages not to make too big a deal out of it. I think I'd like to see a spin-off series with him as the main character just because I want to see more of him. He seems an interesting choice to stick in this world.
(I will confess to being somewhat disturbed that the new teammember is some revenge-driven smart-ass know it all snotty kid. Just 'cause, um... shades of Kitten, much? I thought we were done with the fangirl mindlink, what with the series being over and all that.)