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Zero no Tsukaima F – 05 »« Zero no Tsukaima F – 03

Zero no Tsukaima F – 04

Zero no Tsukaima F   04   01 Zero no Tsukaima F   04   02 Zero no Tsukaima F   04   03
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「女王陛下の恩賞」 (Jououheika no Onshou)
“Her Majesty’s Reward”

While the harem hijinks were on full display this episode, there were actually some important developments going on with Tabitha back in Gallia. There was a hilarious A-plot bolstered by a more serious B-plot, which began to intertwine as the episode went on. I’ll take each in turn.

First of all, the A-plot. While you can tell from my previous posts that I was thoroughly enjoying the action this season has shown us so far, this return to the series’ romantic / harem comedy roots was not unwelcome in the least. Between Guiche being a playboy (successfully, for once), Maricorn trolling Saito, Siesta being super aggressive and the ridiculous play that has all the local girls fawning all over Saito, I found myself laughing more than I have all season…well, save for parts of Ano Natsu de Matteru and the first episode of Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou. There’s not a lot to say here, though. If you enjoyed the hijinks in the first three seasons – at least during the times when J.C. Staff kept the fanservice under control – then you’ll probably enjoy this. If not, then you’d better just hope the action returns soon.

Then there was a the B-plot, where things were actually happening. The scene between Tabitha and her mother was touching, and the revelation that she will become the Queen of Gallia could have some major implications. I can’t help but think that Gallia is still going to be a major source of trouble, especially since the Elemental Siblings haven’t earned their prominent place in the OP yet.

If I had a gripe about this episode – and as something like a critic, I feel compelled to try to find one – it would be the partial reset of the whole Tabitha-going-to-be-Queen thing. I assume that is still going to happen, but having her show up at Saito and Louise’s new haunted house–I mean, mansion means that she isn’t actually going to assume the throne for a few episodes at least. Perhaps it’s just me, but if there’s going to be plot in a show then I would prefer it actually progress instead of sliding back into the old status quo. Still, at least we haven’t seen a villain get resurrected yet, so that mistake hasn’t been made. I can’t stand it when that happens.

…yes, I’m totally waiting for Joseph and Sheffield to turn up alive. You can look forward to me sputtering in anger when they reappear and reveal that faking their deaths was their plan all along. ORZ. Come on Zero no Tsukaima F, you’ve bucked my expectations (in a good way) several times already, don’t fail me now…

Full-size images: 2, 6, 18, 26.

 

Preview

Zero no Tsukaima F   04   Preview 01 Zero no Tsukaima F   04   Preview 02 Zero no Tsukaima F   04   Preview 03

January 29, 2012 at 1:55 pm
50 comments »
  • January 29, 2012 at 2:06 pmSuppa Tenko

    Aye, I do feel like the anime is trying to maintain a status quo effect like those comedy animes instead of advancing the plot. I can’t believe they skipped out on the World Door and Saito using his computer(though I do remember in the first episode of the anime, Saito dropped his computer when he entered the portal).

    • January 29, 2012 at 2:43 pmCrook

      With people talking about the novel I really feel like I’m missing out on things… Am I missing out on things? If the novel has more to offer I’d gladly read it.

      • January 29, 2012 at 3:06 pmSuppa Tenko

        Yes you are missing out on far more than you can imagine. The novel narrates things in a much more epic manner, free from the constraints of time, seasons, and fan service requirements. Like for instance, the last battle of Season 2. Saito’s performance going against the army of 70,000 is much more strategic and carries a lot more weight. Also he actually dies at the end of the battle but is revived by Tiffa. Instead of going back to Louise, he stays with Tiffa and is trained by Agnes on how to use a sword properly.

        In Romalia, there are a lot more events that happen before the battle. Saito recieves emails from his mom, Louise accompanies Saito on a last date before sending him through the Pope’s World Door. Saito also travels through time to meet Brimir.

        During the battle, instead of using fire orbs, Sheffield uses those huge golems from season 3 while Saito and Colbert use a Panzer tank to take them out.

        Those are just the most memorable changes.

      • January 29, 2012 at 4:39 pmDusk

        If only they would make this series a 2 cour show… =(

      • January 29, 2012 at 11:49 pmZero

        Wait so how did saito get an e-mail its never mentioned anything about him having a cell phone with him.

      • January 30, 2012 at 12:46 amhoiut

        I’m also curious about the email thing. What, when, where, why, how? What does it mean?

        And what’s this about a “last date” and a “world door”?

        It seems this show is changing anything that has to do with world doors…

      • January 30, 2012 at 1:31 pmAex

        Sounds like the novels focus more on mystical story elements and less on Louise being a spoiled tsun, which I would welcome with open arms! Hell, even if they had devoted 10 minutes of her overall screen-time to something else, seasons 2 and 3 would’ve probably been as good as 4(so far), or at least 1. Plus we always need more Tiffa. More Tiffa is never a bad thing!

      • January 31, 2012 at 7:54 pmJason

        For those asking about the laptop. In the book, Saito has the laptop with him when he lands in Tristian. He even shows it to Louise while it’s still running on its battery.

        During volume 13, Colbert-sensei manages to charge the battery of the laptop about the same time the Julio and the Pope manage to open “the World Door”. Due to this, Saito, is able to get a wireless signal and reads all his email from his friends and family which causes him to break down, which Louise witnesses (Saito’s desire to go home is much more focused on in the books, although this later changes to him wanting to go home, but only if he can somehow be with Louise as well). Louise ends up agreeing to work with Romalia is exchange for Saito to be able to pass through the world door.

        I like the series, but I prefer to look at it as more of a “Cliff’s Notes” to the books.

      • February 4, 2012 at 9:45 amThe Man

        Wow that’s heavy…..man well maybe we’ll get a relaunch of this series sometime in the future that stays more closely to the books. It happened with FMA.

  • January 29, 2012 at 2:36 pmewok40k

    I am too calling “never found the body” on Joseph and Sheffield. Or “dragon their feet” on the elemental siblings team. Alternatively elemental siblings can end up helping Tabitha as their now legal queen against threats yet unknown (I just want to see Louise licked again :P)

  • January 29, 2012 at 2:49 pmMrPikachu

    Dude, it’s Orz, not ORZ.

    • January 29, 2012 at 3:07 pmSuppa Tenko

      Stilts has been using orz ever since Aquarion Evol ep 2 came out -_-. I guess it’s too memetic.

    • January 29, 2012 at 4:18 pmCroos

      Yup Stilts its orz, OTZ, STO, JTO, O|¯|_ , O7Z, or _no.

    • January 29, 2012 at 8:45 pmStilts

      Noted. Thks for the FYI!

  • January 29, 2012 at 2:52 pmlaaa

    kind of late but o well
    still no clues about next arc

  • January 29, 2012 at 3:03 pmKTNO

    Oh god… the poster of that play is full of mistakes it makes my eyes melt a little…
    Well I’m not that good with english myself but it’s weird, usually french text are always pretty “decent” in this show :/

  • January 29, 2012 at 3:29 pmIntricateRadiance

    Does anyone else want to shove Siesta out of the way? Or is it just me? She’s getting in the way of all the SaitoXLouise, and it’s annoying.
    On a side note, I loved the way Tiffa, Kirche, and Montmorency looked during the celebration.

    • January 29, 2012 at 4:01 pmArcad

      Lol I have been for Siesta since day one.

      • January 29, 2012 at 5:45 pmomeganx

        I’ve been for anyone but Lousie actually. Unlike most anime fans while i do think she is good character, the whole “blow you up when im embarrassed or shy or mad” bit is TOO OLD to count. At least the “horny schoolgirl routine” or the “silent lover with a dark past” seems more interesting IMO.

    • January 29, 2012 at 9:20 pmfragb85

      It was cute and endearing back in season one but now its just frustrating. Its already obvious that the SaitoxLouise ship will win but the writers keep repeating the same cockblock “jokes” long after they’ve stopped being funny. Reset Buttons are some of my biggest banes in entertainment, anime or not, and ZnT just loves to abuse it.

  • January 29, 2012 at 4:11 pmThe Moondoggie

    Aw, Saito and Louise failed trying to do it again. Isn’t that cute?

  • January 29, 2012 at 4:37 pmDusk

    Man, why is Louise so extremely cute? There was so many lovable face expression in this episode, some of them not captured in the screenshots above. Also, it might just be me, but the animation is looking pretty good for a J.C. Staff production. I don’t remember the previous seasons been this good visually. On second thought, maybe it’s just nostalgia. =)

  • January 29, 2012 at 5:31 pmjingoi

    If Saito can at least get one more girl (not just seeing her nude) then I will watch this starting with the first season but I assume that only the annoying tsun does it with Saito. Am I wrong?

    • January 29, 2012 at 5:46 pmomeganx

      so im not the only one who thinks she is annoying! lol

  • January 29, 2012 at 6:33 pmAniota

    I would rather spell the name of Tabatha’s nation Gallia since it’s the latin name for Gaul.
    Wikipedia has the world map and it says it’s Gallia too.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Halkeginia_map.png

    • January 29, 2012 at 8:52 pmStilts

      Also that’s just the right spelling, heh. Thks for the catch, fixed it.

  • January 29, 2012 at 6:52 pmKarmafan

    I just hope they stay focused on the story and don’t back slide to the fan service filled episodes we saw last season. So far this year they put a good story 1st and the fan service kept to a minimum. Last year was all fan service with little story and the season was terrible.

  • January 29, 2012 at 7:01 pmMissingnomer

    Well, I think this episode is just to take a step back from all that is happened and give us a breather. But I agree Stilts, Joseph and his familiar are probably gonna come back from the dead. I mean, who else is an enemy besides those two? Unless I missed something, those were our only adversaries. Let’s hope for the best!

  • January 29, 2012 at 7:04 pmMissingnomer

    Well, I think this episode is just to take a step back from all that is happened and give us a breather. But I agree Stilts, Joseph and his familiar are probably gonna come back from the dead. I mean, who else is an enemy besides those two? Unless I missed something, those were our only adversaries. Let’s hope for the best!

    Sorry, but I accidentaly wrote in my email wrong…ehh, forget my above comment, we all love Ai, right? ^-^

  • January 29, 2012 at 8:41 pmWrenleos

    Looking at the preview, the next episode is going to hurt my soul. Ever since last season I’ve really hated Henrietta. =/

    • January 31, 2012 at 8:15 ammada

      I dislike Siesta but at least she’s up front about it even though she’s pretty annoying too. Total cockblocker But with Henrietta, it really puts me off. Moving in on another woman’s man, kissing him behind her back (even as an “accident”) when this other woman is a friend and someone who trusts you? It’s just a real turn off of her character. And she’s much more seductive in her actions. what was she wearing in the preview. And even Tiffania last week trying to kiss him. Does she not see that its wrong?

      I’ve seen people complain about Louise’s tsun but feel like I’d rather blame it all on the other girls and Saito. Why he always goes along with them. its a point that I really dislike about his character even if it is played as a joke. I just really dislike harems.

      I like Louise and Saito as a pair, would it be so bad for the story just to let them be already?

  • January 29, 2012 at 8:55 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    hmmm, a “familiar” staple *pun not intended* at this point. what is this show like, right about now? “weekend at bernies 2?????”.. this shows been around fo a while,its funny how years from now you might see that it had several seasons over the course of some years, BUT you wont get that feeling cuz ur seeing it now..whats my point?? i have none. thats why i like this site!!!!

  • January 30, 2012 at 4:18 amGaze of Providence

    So he is now called Sir Saito de Hiiraga, Baron of De Orienes.

    • January 30, 2012 at 8:53 amStilts

      HERO OF THE IMPERIUM!!!

      …hey, at the rate he’s going it’s possible.

  • January 30, 2012 at 5:49 amBooto

    Louise’s hair style looks pretty good like that.
    I definitely prefer it over her normal style.

  • January 30, 2012 at 1:24 pmAex

    Louise just needs to accept the fact that she’s gonna end up in a threesome with Siesta sooner or later. That’s the only way this is gonna end! XD Seriously though, Siesta should step aside and let those two have at least a few nights together even if just to get the ball rolling.

    *ahem* Anyways, didn’t see what the big letdown with the mansion was. That place is gonna be awesome when it’s cleaned up! Sure, it’ll probably take a few months with just a few people cleaning, but still! I think their first night in the house proves that they need a bed big enough for at least four though :X Being a hero is sure the tough life…

    • January 30, 2012 at 2:03 pmStilts

      Threesome? The way they’re going, I think a foursome is the minimum.

      …is what I would like to say, but he’ll probably end up only getting with Louise :P

      • January 30, 2012 at 2:47 pmEliteF22

        Which is the big letdown with harem anime. They always force one lead romance. Embrace the harem!!! A day for each wife, like Tenchi Muyo revealed in the novels!!!!

      • January 30, 2012 at 3:24 pmAex

        Every harem fantasy/scifi anime out there could learn something from Tenchi Muyo and its spin-offs… XD

        And even when Louise and Saito get married, you know Siesta will still keep trying to jump him. Hell, she probably won’t even stop sleeping in bed with them. Then if Tabitha becomes queen and they want to strengthen political ties… ;) It’s not like they’ll ever convince her to get with anyone else!

        Poor Saito… Louise is never gonna run out of reasons to blow him up.

      • January 31, 2012 at 4:48 pmRagefat

        Blow him up eh… I loled XD

      • January 31, 2012 at 7:51 pmskylion

        Fivesome. Tabitha’s “sister” will want in on the action. Why? Does this series need a reason why? Hell, make it Sixsome since Tiffa fell in love with him for no good reason.

  • January 30, 2012 at 6:01 pmdragonspit4

    Question:

    Hi, I have watched the first and second season for zero but didn’t watch season 3 and the final season yet. I am thinking whether to watch season 3 and final or not watch them.

    The thing is I don’t like harem, but I am willing to tolerate it if Saito “ONLY” like Lousie and have absolutely NO romantic feelings for Siesta.

    I have been seeing a lot of screen shots with Siesta in bed with Saito and stuff like that in this final season. I wanted to ask if Saito have any romantic feelings toward Siesta and whether this show and final season is for me to watch or not.

    To summarize: (Condition for me watching)

    1) Saito ONLY like Louise
    2) Saito have absolutely NO romantic feelings for Siesta

    So, Should I watch or not watch?

    • January 30, 2012 at 8:09 pmAex

      Saito isn’t the pinnacle of virtue, and personally I’d say he does like Siesta (and maybe Tabitha) a little bit, but he loves Louise. He doesn’t push the other two away if they snuggle up to him or ask for a favor, but he’d never actually let it lead to anything that would hurt Louise. So are there feelings? Pretty much. Would Saito ever pursue her? Not unless he thought Louise was dead or seriously and truly never going to speak to him again.

      • January 30, 2012 at 10:40 pmdragonspit4

        Thank you.

        As long as Saito doesn’t aggressively pursuit Seista I am fine… (ie trying to touch her or grope her or anything like that)

  • January 30, 2012 at 6:42 pmJif

    This show is trying to balance too much. Sometimes it works, other times not so much. Tabitha being reunited with her mother was amazing and heartfelt, and I wish that dimension would have been emphasized a bit more. I would love to see a movie adaptation where things get slowed down a little bit, and the story sticks more closely to the novels.

  • January 30, 2012 at 6:42 pmAllnighter

    Was wondering about Tabitha’s nickname, if:

    Louise = Lemon-chan
    Siesta = Pineapple-chan
    Kirche = Coconut-chan
    Tiffa = Melon-chan
    Tabitha = ??

    Cherry-chan maybe?

    • January 31, 2012 at 7:13 amStilts

      Not much difference between Louise and Tabitha, so she’d probably be Lime-chan. Oh, and Montmorency is definitely Apple-chan. I was thinking about this for my post, but never found a good excuse to use them, heh

    • January 31, 2012 at 7:52 pmskylion

      Fruit Roll Up-chan.

  • January 30, 2012 at 10:21 pmhaseo0408

    The episode was nicely play for my taste since it depicts Saito is finally considering to settle down and Louise shares his feelings but it seems the strongest rival to overcome will be Henrrieta. Since half of season 2 and early in the novels it is quiet obvious that the Queen has strong feelings for Saito and it doesn´t help she can bing herself the understand them less alone to stay away from Louise love one. Is it love, jelousy, envy for what she lost or she just wants someone at her side to compensate her insecuraties and loneliness? We should find out next time but something is certain, Louise is not going ot answer kindly to Henrrieta´s advances.

  • February 5, 2012 at 3:16 amryu

    I have missed this anime been sooo long. It takes almost two years for this to come out but at least its here