Zetsuen no Tempest – 02
「彼女はとてもきれいだった、と少年は言った」 (Kanojo wa Totemo Kireidatta, to Shounen wa Itta)
“He Said She Was Very Beautiful”
With this second episode, if there’s one thing to note, it’s how similar many aspects were to the first. It didn’t quite possess the impact the premiere did, but there’s plenty of things to like with this series as a whole so far. For one, Bones continues to show why they’re such a good animation studio, giving us some flawless action scenes that really give corresponding scenes in the source material justice. Gotta love all those flash jumps and Kusaribe Natsumura’s (Suwabe Junichi) spear action (no pun intended). And not only that, Bones tops it off with some rather notable decisions in regards to how it’s choosing to adapt the source material, as they’re doing very well in adapting it, or at least ensuring that the major points of the source are maintained even when there’s something moved around or added in.
But that’s enough about Bones and the source material. Goin’ into the what we get in the episode itself, we get a little bit of a review and some additional supplements to the basic premise we received last episode, as well as some continued plot advancement as well. Mahiro and Yoshino return to the scene of Aika’s death in an attempt to find the killer using some of Hakaze’s reserve magic talisman, and it’s revealed that the killer seems to be a Kusaribe clan member. We don’t quite get much else at the moment, but it’s notable how everything just so happens to link together at this point (with Yoshino’s relationship to Aika giving him another link to Mahiro and his quest to find the killer being notable too). Combined with the Hamlet quote from last episode, which basically talked about the main character just so happened to be there, so he has a responsibility to rid the world of evil… and the show in general seems to be constructing some sort of subtle commentary on destiny and fate.
Notably, if there is one thing that’s for sure, is that I’m starting to find the contrast and similarity between both Yoshino and Mahiro particularly interesting. For one, they’re quite different in their personalities. Mahiro’s more quick to react and would do anything to achieve his goal, while Yoshino’s more reserved and more willing to accept things in general. At the same time though, they’re notably similar because while the ultimate goal of Mahiro’s quest is to find and kill Aika’s killer, both Mahiro and Yoshino outwardly say they’re not doing it for Aika and that the dead don’t feel anything/can’t do anything for the dead. And it’s just interesting how they’re both so contrasting in basic personality, yet share that one big thing… even though it seems like they’re both just saying the comments about the dead partially for show. Furthermore, it’s interesting how we can pretty much see how big of an effect Aika’s death has had on them, and how much their lives have changed so far as a result of it. Time is out of joint indeed.
Finally, if there’s one other thing I wanted to mention, it’s the continued ability of Zetsuen to mix in some comedy with the seriousness. The whole joke with Natsumura and Mahiro about learnin’ magic in a barrel… the thing about Mahiro not being trustworthy and Hakaze having some issues for trusting him anyway… the whole thing where Yoshino recovers his wallet without lifting a finger, then gets dissed by Fraulein for being a “corpse-robber”… just some nice moments that made me chuckle despite the fairly serious and straight forward nature of the series.
Overall, just a solid episode altogether, albeit this episode served more of a bridge and a source for the solidification of the plot more than anything. Looking forward, Zetsuen should be something worth watchin’, that’s for sure.
Author’s Note: Thanks to BakaMochi for providing the caps! :D In regards to coverage of Zetsuen, both BakaMochi and I hope to continue with permanent coverage of the series, but it is still not confirmed as this time. If confirmed, then you’ll most likely see an update on the main page news sidebar/schedule.
ED: 「happy endings」 by 香菜花澤 (Kana Hanazawa)