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Welcome back UBW! This show literally just comes right back from where it left off and I am ok with that. Though to be fair I almost expected this to be a 40 minute episode since they gave us a couple in the first half XD. But what they did with this episode was pretty impressive since it took an already extreme situation and raised it up another notch.

I’m honestly not sure which I’m more impressed with. The fact that we have a MC like Shirou who actually confessed his feelings (wha!) or the whole Archer going rogue thing….Well the latter is somewhat more dangerous, but the first is a lot more fun to talk about. Somehow it wasn’t all that surprising what happened with Archer after all we’ve seen to this point. Certainly the idea that Rin was going to get Shriou back into the war was what triggered his actions. He seemed ready to fight Caster at the start until she mentioned that one thing and then he froze up.

Well now you've done it Shirou!

Well now you’ve done it Shirou!

But hey let’s start with the Shirou and Rin business XD. That really did surprise me to be honest. Those two were really down after that whole defeat and things just slowly built up to Shirou confessing his feelings to a Rin who was pretty blown away. She was worried about his condition which was fair considering the situation and he also knew how utterly shaken up Rin was right now. It just showed how close he’d gotten to her that his words could actually make her break a bit and cry. Normally not something to be proud of, but it reflected that he could reach her.

That was enough to force Rin to drag him off so she could try to get some control over herself. I liked the conversation in that it again showed how both Archer and Shirou see Rin as this brilliant existence. Even if she fails and runs into trouble she’ll definitely rise above it. Giving her that gem when it’s not exactly a common gem to have around….says a lot to her. Of course that’s a huge bundle of confusion that I’m not surprised she’s unwilling to talk about openly with Shirou quite yet.

The best part was just what came after the gem. Him admitting that she’d always been someone he was interested in and admired. Then they ended up having to spend time together during this war and those feelings only got stronger. He wasn’t just seeing the image she had at school but her true personality and was getting closer to her the whole while. So naturally in that situation when he saw her in trouble he’d jump on down there to help her. That hit her like a ton of bricks and now she’s left dealing with that knowledge on top of her own feelings. It was just a really big step forward for them both.

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It was pretty interesting seeing how things turned in such a big hurry. Shirou was sneaking in ready to help as best he could, Though really it turned from a tough fight into a suicidal one the moment Archer decided to go traitor. I’m still amazed he decided to do something like that. He’s made some questionable decisions to this point, but actually attacking Rin and getting in her way? He’s lucky that Caster decided to take his decision to let Rin and by extension Shirou go. Certainly it wouldn’t go well for Caster if Archer was going to heavily resist her like Saber. No point having multiple servants you have to struggle for them to do anything and letting a couple masters who can’t do anything go is a pretty easy option to run with.

The interesting thing was how they built up to that moment. Rin having a very good understanding of Archer to this point. That he was a special kind of existence being summoned by the world itself to various crises around the globe in order to make sure humanity didn’t wipe itself out. Probably getting taken to such dark places so many times would just break down the ideals that he was holding onto. Both the fact that he’d have to take bloody measures to prevent the end of humanity and the fact that it just kept on happening. It’d make anyone lose a bit of faith in humanity. No wonder Archer is so bleak about things.

Not too much to say about Saber’s situation….it’s a tough one. Left in that position, struggling against the command seals and just in general not enjoying her situation whatsoever. Kind of too bad they didn’t have her even say much of anything during the later conflict, but maybe she wasn’t in much condition for talking.

OP [Brave Shine] by Aimer: (A+)

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Have to say I did like the sense of drama with the OP. The main cast just seems ready for the troubles ahead of them. The song itself I think is a bit stronger than in the first OP. It builds up nicely to the chorus and the action matching it well was fun to look at. The energy of the OP had me wanting to listen to it several times and each time it just confirms that I really do like this song and OP XD. It just serves as a good reminder about all the pieces at play here. It’s clear enough that Archer, Rin and Shirou will be key pieces in this second half and will just say that this isn’t a bad way to open each episode for the last half.

ED [ring your bell] by Kalafina: (B+)

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Visually the ED was pretty simple, a lot of still images focusing on the main cast. There is some movement near the end though focusing on Rin and Shirou. They certainly aren’t going to hold back on making clear that the relationship between these two will be critical to the rest of the series. The song itself was pretty average from my point of view. But as a whole it was a decent enough ED.

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The show really is just picking off from where it left and it should be fun to see where things go from here. Rin and Shirou are in a serious mess. Even if Rin has confidence she can handle Caster (which may only be for a while, they are still outnumbered). Archer joining that side just completely throws all the power balance into chaos. Handling Kuzuki alone was going to be hard and now it’s just impossible. Shirou can somewhat force Kuzuki back with that tracing, but that leaves them no way to handle Archer. Even then it’s not like Shirou has shown the ability to actually beat Kuzuki. They need help and sadly there isn’t a lot of it going around. Caster has herself, Archer, Saber, and Assassin. Now to be fair she doesn’t have Saber fully under control and Assassin isn’t there, but that doesn’t leave much help. It’s just Lancer and Berserker. Not a lot of options….
Score: A

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An older member at 25, yet a new addition to Anime Evo. Recently graduating University and in the difficult point between school and a true career. Anime being a salvation and blogging a good way to put all those hours of writing essays to some use. Enjoys talking about series, yet not taking on so many that the quality dips. A Canadian who enjoys his anime and hearing what others think about the series he enjoys watching.

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