Charles and Ray Beams made their appearance in episode 21 of the anime. The two stayed on for a very small number of episodes and served as a minor story in the overarching plot of Eureka Seven. Despite their short appearance of 7 episodes, the two managed to create a lasting impact on viewers and on Renton, serving as a trigger for Renton’s rapid and apparent maturity and growth.
The two characters first appeared during Renton’s time away from Gekkostate. With Renton feeling as if he had lost his place and role in the group, he took his leave eventually finding his way to Charles and Ray who he encounters as he is wondering around aimlessly. The two eventually take him on board their ship treating him as son. The two Beams become the major parental figures to Renton who not only lost his parents early in life, but also found no parental figures in Gekkostate. With his lack of family on his journey, Renton developed a familial bond with the couple who took him in during his time of vulnerability.
The connection between Charles and Ray and Renton was one that proved to have many layers of meaning as the series progressed. Renton was a character that did not know his parents. He lost most of his family early on in his life. In Gekkostate, aside from the fact that he could not identify with any parental figures there, he also felt as if he had lost his purpose there. When he met the Beams, he had yet to experience the care and warmth offered only by parents. On the other hand, Charles and Ray were a couple who could not conceive a child. Due to their exposure to high levels of trapar, Ray was unable to carry a child leaving the two devastated. Thus, the reason for their quick decision to take Renton in and treat him as part of their family became apparent. It could be said that the two, Renton and the Beams, were meant to meet to be able to form the family that they had always yearned for. The lost child and the would-be parents found solace and a sense of completeness in one another.
The Beams were important for Renton because they renewed his spirit by giving him an experience that he had been robbed off and had yet to find. They showed Renton what it felt like to have caring parents, treating him as family rather than an outsider or newcomer. As opposed to the animosity and hostility that Renton received from Holland in particular, Charles and Ray willingly offered him a place in their home. The two treated Renton with respect and understanding that showed him that they cared about him which. As opposed to Gekkostate members who were primarily militaristic in nature and role, the Beams prioritized the familial and parental role. Despite being of military background, they treated Renton as a son rather than a soldier.
Of particular importance was Charles who served as a foil to Holland. Both men had the same military background coming from the same branch of the military and holding the same beliefs regarding war and battles. Despite their similar backgrounds, the two approached their relationship with Renton differently. While Holland treated Renton as a child, Charles treated him as a son. In Gekkostate, Renton experienced many instances of the truth being hidden from him. He was left unable to grasp the situation because its members, particularly Holland, actively shut him out. In contrast, Charles took a more honest approach choosing to explain things to Renton so that he could understand. Rather than hiding the ugliness of war and death, he showed Renton the truth of the world and explained to him the reality of the situations that they were in.
One of the most powerful moments in the series was when Charles decided to be completely honest with Renton regarding their mission to eliminate Gekkostate. He explained the situation without lies or hesitations and told Renton to make a choice. As a father figure to one who was clearly reaching a turning point in his maturity, Charles showed Renton privileges that any son or daughter deserves, honesty and respect. The most important aspect of the choice that he gave Renton was that he specifically stated that he would respect Renton’s decision. Regardless of whether he chose to stay or leave and warn Gekkostate, Charles would not hold it against him. The fact that he acknowledged Renton, treating him as both his son and his equal, makes Charles one of the most impactful characters of the series.
Charles and Ray truly made for a memorable pair among the characters of Eureka Seven. Despite their short run, they stood out and created a stronger impression than most of Gekkostate. Renton’s determination to return and his maturity in the latter half of the series serve as a testament to the impact that the Beams left not only to him but to the entire series.