Zero no Tsukaima F – 09
「タバサの戴冠」 (Tabasa no Taikan)
In this episode, some of our heroes(‘s less important friends) learn a valuable lesson: no matter your race, where you come from, or what you believe, women are still crazy, and men are still stupid. Amen, brothers and/or sisters, amen. No, but in all seriousness I’m glad that all the characters are getting over their brief fling with racism. While I have no problem with an anime exploring hard subjects, this show isn’t going deep enough to make anyone really empathize with the victims or reexamine their own biases. Perhaps that’s because Japan is a largely homogeneous nation that has been able to mostly ignore racism, whereas I hail from the good ‘ol USA, which has a much more, uhm, brutally tragic history with the subject, but this all felt like Baby’s First Racism. Thus, I was really glad when the two groups realized they weren’t so different after all and bonded over the perceived eccentricities of the opposite sex. Let’s put that crap behind us and get back to what this show is good at!
So aside from the racism thing, this episode was largely spent on Louise being jealous of Tiffania’s newfound closeness with Saito. Pretty standard fare, but what I enjoyed was Siesta getting in on the act. Before Siesta said anything Louise was perfectly calm, but then she did, and Louise was not. I’m beginning to think that our lovely meido is even more dangerous than Lemon-chan. Ohandalso, her Iguchi Yuka impression was spot on. Hah!
Still, far more interesting than any of that was what was going on in the plot. The first thing is that Tabitha is now Queen of Galia. I’m glad they finally got back to this plot thread, because it was starting to annoy me how long they were putting it off. But before I get ahead of myself, the more interesting thing this week was the revelation of exactly what Saito’s new familiar powers do. Along with already being Gandalfr, Saito is now Lifdrasil, the Heart of God, and his new ability allows him to boost the power of any void spell. That’s all well and good, but there’s a drawback: every time he uses this power, he reduces his own life, and if he uses it all up…he will die. Ohandbytheway, the Pope decided not to tell Saito about this, because he was concerned he would get scared. What. A. Dick. As is, I’m undecided whether the Pope is going to end up being a villain, or whether he’s just a really dangerous ally to have, but I don’t much like him either way. From enticing Joseph to attack Romalia earlier this season to withholding valuable information now, he’s acting like a guy who is just so sure that he knows what’s best, even if what’s best means betraying the trust of his allies. Tell Saito! He wouldn’t get scared. He has charged at full-blown armies and enemy fleets single-handedly. All news like this would do would be to make him appropriately careful with his Lifdrasil powers. The Pope’s lying is going to get someone killed eventually, and if the past is any indication, it’s probably going to be Saito.
Sketchy popes aside, it looks like Tabitha’s reign is going to start off with a bang – and not the good kind. The empathy doll shot (TVTropes!) is code for “A CHILD DIED HERE,” and with volcanoes errupting, there’s good reason to believe that’s exactly what’s going to happen. It also looks like Saito will get to play “booster” far sooner than Louise would prefer. Should be fun!
- Saito just loves to take off his shirt now. Show off.
- Louise’s new spell is confirmed to be “World Door”, which is probably significant, though I’m not sure how. What I do know is that it’s not liable to be game-breaking. Teleport spells can be insanely useful, but it looks like this one is only big enough for a few people, so no relocating-an-entire-army-behind-enemy-lines here. Plus, it appears to be the type that people have to actually walk through, so no telefragging (trope!) for Louise. Not that she’s evil enough to do that…though I totally would be >:)
- Way to go, Maricorn! Sure, you almost paid dearly for it , but at least you finally got a little action. Maricorn is quickly becoming one of those goofy dark horses that I’m oddly fond of, like Andy of Aquarion EVOL. You can do it!