Short Answer: Franxx’s iron maiden form represents the connection between Stamen and Pistil; that’s why Strelizia’s color turns red when Hiro and Zero Two wholeheartedly accept each other, causing Strelizia to awaken a new powerful red form called Strelizia XX form. However, Strelizia retained this form for only a short moment, indicating that it is a temporary power-up form that the creators featured to demonstrate that Zero Two finally accepted her Klaxosaur origin and red color, which she initially hid from others.
Some fans also relate this form to the legend of Jian birds, where the white color signifies partnership while the red color indicates mutual romantic feelings. The fact that Strelizia XX form awakened when Zero Two and Hiro declared their love for each other further supports this theory. With that said, Let’s dive into more detail about Strelitzia to clear up things.
Dr. Franxx specially created Strelizia for Zero Two as a normal Franxx cannot handle her brutal fighting style and power; after all, she is the clone of Klaxosaur Princess and carries the rare Klaxo Sapien blood. Moreover, Dr. Franxx designed Strelizia to resemble Zero Two as he found her existence far more beautiful than any human. Although there are other custom-made Franxx in Squad 13, Strelizia differs from them in terms of power as it is capable of killing countless Klaxosaurs in a single blow. If that doesn’t get you pumped, then I don’t know what will.
Strelizia made its debut in the first episode of Darling in the Franxx as a Klaxosaur attacked Plantation 13, where adults held a ceremony for new Parasites. Zero Two, along with her partner (Code 081), engaged the Klaxosaur, but due to the declining health of Code 081, they failed to fight off the Klaxosaur, prompting Zero Two to pilot Strelizia alone in Stampede Mode. Hiro (Code 016) happened to witness Zero Two fighting alone and decided to help her despite being failed as a Parasite. Miraculously, they managed to connect, enabling Strelizia to awaken its original iron maiden form that quickly destroyed the Klaxosaur.
Do Franxx normally change colors?
Franxx work on the same principle on which Klaxosaurs work as they are living weapons that came into being when Klaxo Sapiens sacrificed their lives and merged with each other to become Klaxosaurs. Since Franxx are mechas, unlike Klaxosaurs, they don’t normally show any characteristics of living beings like changing colors, but things are a bit different when it comes to Strelizia, which is a special Franxx piloted by Zero Two and Hiro. When Zero Two and Hiro connected on a deeper level, and their emotions and thoughts got synchronized, Strelizia not only changed its color from white to red but gained a significant increase in power as well, as shown in episode 15 of Darling in the Franxx.
It is worth noting that among all Franxx, only Strelizia changed its color in the entire series, but it is also true no other Stamen and Pistil besides Zero Two and Hiro managed to connect on such a level. Given all of this, it is possible that other Franxx can change their colors too if their Stamen and Pistil have a chemistry similar to Zero Two and Hiro, but in the end, it is just a theory as the creators of Darling in the Franxx didn’t shed light on it.
The Strelizia with just Zero Two
All Franxx, including Strelizia, have two modes of operation: one is the normal mode, in which Stamen and Pistil connect to pilot Franxx, while the other mode is called Stampede Mode, in which only Pistil tries to pilot Franxx on her own. In Stampede Mode, the Franxx changes its shape into a beast-like creature, signaling the risks of this mode. Most of the time, Pistils end up resorting to Stampede Mode to survive the battle because, without Stamen, they are unable to move, but upon activating Stampede Mode, they can move and fight. However, it is very dangerous to pilot Franxx in this mode as the pistil will likely die if she continues to pilot Franxx in Stampede Mode.
Whenever Zero Two loses a partner, she ends up piloting Strelizia alone in Stampede Mode as she is bent on killing Klaxosaurs even at the cost of her own life, as shown in episode 15 of Darling in the Franxx. Moreover, Zero Two is the only Pistil that has survived piloting Franxx in Stampede Mode multiple times, probably because of her Klaxosaur blood. Besides Zero Two, Kokoro also tried to pilot Franxx in Stampede Mode, but Mitsuru timely saves her from going berserk, as shown in episode 11 of Darling in the Franxx.
The Strelizia with Hiro and Zero Two
According to Dr. Franxx, a Franxx unleashes its true iron maiden form when Stamen and Pistil connect, and their hearts become one; after all, Franxx is the practical application of the working mechanism in Klaxosaurs. Dr. Franxx considered Franxx to be perfect with no more upgrades possible, but he changed his views upon witnessing the Strelizia XX form that awakened when Zero Two and Hiro synchronized with each other on a level that surpassed all previous records. Their mutual feelings and unconditional love for each other gave rise to this new power in the form of Strelizia XX.
It is worth noting that the red color of Strelizia XX signifies the fact that Zero Two accepted her Klaxosaur origin that gave her red color. At first, Zero Two hid her real skin color from others as she was afraid that people and her darling would consider her a monster because of it, but when Hiro declares his love for her despite knowing her secret, she ends up revealing her beautiful red skin color and author expressed it through Strelizia XX, as shown in episode 15 of Darling in the Franxx. Given all of this, it wouldn’t be wrong to conclude that Strelizia’s true power awakens only when Zero Two and Hiro pilot it together.
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Our Final Thoughts:
In the end, I can’t help but think that the creators should have given us more insights about Franxx as it was not only a mecha but an innovation that could bring two people together on a whole new level. The working process of Franxx and Klaxosaurs intrigued us in the most unpredictable ways as the world surely changes when two beings synchronize their thoughts, feelings, emotions, and life itself. The way Strelizia awakened a new power through the union of Zero Two and Hiro is another reminder that the biggest power we have is love.
Thank you for reading!
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