Score: B-

This episode really had me going back and forth on it. At times I was really liking the direction it was taking events with the cast’s efforts to manipulate Van just blowing up in their faces. But on the other hand I don’t feel like it blew up enough on them and the absurd arrogance from Red kind of takes away from the coming finale. This isn’t even close to the level of buildup they had going in season 1. And I’m curious if they’ll be able to end this story on a satisfying note. Especially since I’m unsure if trying to redeem Van is a good story choice at this stage.

This isn’t going to work out for you Van

The big thing is that there’s just no tension here. Red already showed that he could outclass Van in their first fight. And now he’s even downgrading Van’s weaponry to make a secure win even easier to attain. Even then, they have Ruti standing right there with them. She could solo Van and Lavender at the same time! She beat Lavender with a stick!

Sure, I can see Van either losing or being redeemed which sets off Lavender who’d rather see him die than change who he is. Then everyone can just team up and stomp her final form or whatever. But there’s just not that much danger. Red is utterly relaxed, and Rit is clearly confident enough in what she’s doing to stand up to Lavender 1v1 for the time being.

I salute this season’s dedication to fanservice

I have a feeling that we’re not really going to examine whether Lavender is only like this because the other races ganged up on her people and massacred them. The attachment to Van makes sense. Both of them are the last of their people who have suffered at the cruelty of others. I can imagine why Lavender would be attached to Van and want to stick with him. He’s a rock that she’s lacked since spending eons in hiding by herself. And she’d probably rather die in battle than go back to that isolation.

Makes sense that the appeal from Albert didn’t work out even when comparing the fae Van wanted to kill to Lavender. To Lavender the other fae are likely all enemies. Where were they when her people were being slaughtered? Plus, with Lavender’s people being called literal calamities they probably didn’t get along.

Yeah, he’s going to win

What really got me in this episode was honestly Red’s absolute arrogance. It’s just pure luck that Van didn’t go with his other option of obliterating Zoltan until someone showed up to stop him. That he saw the Undine spirit and decided that’s where everyone was going to gather. Obviously, he’s the main character and it’s going to work out. But I don’t love that level of overconfidence immediately after their planning resulted in Albert being KO’d and in recovery. I don’t feel he’s earned being that arrogant about his abilities. Luckily, he’s got nothing but cheerleaders in his corner with Rit and Ruti. No chance they’ll point out any errors he’s made in this arc.

He is going to win, obviously. I suppose there’s always the potential angle of having Van win by using things that Red taught him or something. But I don’t think so since there is the obvious setup for the fight against an enraged Lavender coming and the main character isn’t going to be unconscious for that.

His face is surprisingly in good shape!

There was fun though in seeing things nearly go completely off the rails. Albert could have lost his life and that would have been a heavy price to pay. Esta trusted Red’s judgment and basically stopped trying to talk with Van herself once Red made his move. They split Van off from everyone besides Lavender and then he went off the rails. I like how Albert has developed. But having Albert die would have been a huge character moment for Esta. How would her relationship with Red have changed? Who knows, because that didn’t happen XD. Somehow Albert survived getting slashed and having skull caved in! And Esta kind of further diminished Van’s threat level by beating him instantly.

The only real cost from all this is Van’s armor (which probably wasn’t cheap) and the Priest. RIP that guy. Van will probably get a full redemption arc, but no one’s going to be trying to avenge that guy. My condolences to the people running that inn that will have to clean up the mess.

Glad to see Ruti is hanging around

So here we are in the finale. They have a safety valve in Ruti so honestly things will be fine no matter what. Ironically the creates with ancient elvish writing on them don’t seem to be factoring into the finale. Maybe it’s setup for a future arc or something? All Red must do is push his “blessings are bad and don’t listen to them” system and Van should eventually be fine. Lavender will probably snap, but we’re heading into the last episode. The Van vs Red fight at least needs a few minutes. Plus, they need to have the epilogue and Albert probably waking up. There’s not much time to even have a big throw-down with a berserk Lavender. Ironically, we spent much of this season doing not much at all and now the conclusion needs to cram a decent amount into the final episode.

I don’t want to be too mean about the episode. The season isn’t as good as season 1, but it has good qualities. And I’ll try to focus on those after the last episode airs and I have time to really look back on the season.

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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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