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Strike the Blood – 17

「観測者たちの宴篇I」 (Kansoku Sha Tachi no Utage Hen II)
“Fiesta for the Observers II”

It ain’t a fiesta without a bunch of people gathering around some kind of flame, and it’s an adage that held true in this week’s Strike the Blood. Indeed, there was quite the flame to start things off and a boatload of people ended up gathering before it was all said and done. Sadly the flame went out early—you can blame Astarte for that—but that didn’t keep the party from going on well into the night, since we had Vatler (the party master) in the house. And when Vatler’s rolling messing around with dungeons (see the prison barrier) and dragons, there ain’t no way the party beat’s going to stop. When he’s entertained, so are you—at least, you better be—and this was just another fun filled episode.

Terrible comedic commentary aside, this week was generally what we’ve come to expect from this series. We got Gigliola Ghirardi showing us how it really means to be whipped, Vatler giving quality humanitarian aid, the bad guys comically warping out when they’ve depleted their powers, Himeragi dressed up as a nurse, Sayaka making priceless faces like this, and Akatsuki stealing scooters. Amid all these action/comedy sequences, we get revelations around the Witch of Novaria’s plot regarding the Dark Oath Grimoire, and the pieces are starting to fall together one by one. This series knows how to combine its various elements, and it does a darn good job of being the kind of series it wants to be: a mixture of action, fantasy, supernatural that’s neither overly serious or comedic. It strikes (pun intended) a fine balance between all the aforementioned elements, which makes it impossible to ever consider this series bad in any respect. Just good stuff.

That said, this episode does make you wonder quite a bit as to who exactly Akagi is. It’s safe to say she probably isn’t hiding any secrets to the degree that Yuuma was—she seems human, at least—but she seems to more than a wizard class computer wiz too. She seems to have control of virtually everything on the island, has some influence over the Island Guard, and inevitably finds herself involved in the events on Itogami Island in one way or another. It definitely seems like there’s more than meets the eye there with her—like there was with Yuuma, who looks like she’ll return soon.

Sadly, it doesn’t look like La Folia’ll be returning quite so soon though, but I guess there’s only so much you can do with the way the story line has shaped up. It has to be noted also that there aren’t many reasons to involve her in what seems like a very Itogami Island-centered event, and her omission also gives other characters a chance to shine that they otherwise wouldn’t have been given. Indeed, it’s even in things like this where the series’ creators seem to be balancing things quite well, and it’s a pleasure sitting back and watching this series develop. Just don’t go forgetting to eat while you watch, cause you just might end up like a certain someone. Though I guess I could get treated to pizza like that and share a table with those two, it wouldn’t be a bad exchange…

Author’s Note: Apologies for the post coming out slightly later than usual. Bunch of random work popped up and I got distracted by WonFes news to boot. Sadly, there weren’t any StB figures announced though.

Full-length images: 20.

 

Preview

February 9, 2014 at 9:13 am
47 comments »
  • February 9, 2014 at 9:19 amCybersteel

    Damn that fakeout -_-

    What’s with Vatler and his “snake” familiar?

  • February 9, 2014 at 9:20 amKyon12

    what an episode it was great….sayaka didnt to much time but oh well, I sometimes think the Asagi gives the most fan service but I wonder……….xD anyway I hope she finds out about Koujo being the 4th progenitor and next week Vatler girls in swimsuit……deadly hahaha

  • February 9, 2014 at 9:32 amWanderer

    OMG, Natsuki-chan chou kawaii!

    …Sorry, that was just the first thing I thought when I saw her in the screencaps.

  • February 9, 2014 at 10:00 amrukia

    Asagi it turns out is kind of a bad ass.

    • February 9, 2014 at 10:21 amewok40k

      She can hack any technical system in the city without even doing it herself, via her AI sidekick Moguai. This is quite powerful ability on an artificial island where there is loads of various technical systems that can be used to advantage – sealing bulkheads, flooding areas, she did it all.

    • February 9, 2014 at 12:50 pmjrj

      most of the main characters group (Aka Kojo and his harem mates) have nicknames, and Asagi’s nickname, to the dismay of herself, is “cyber empress”. This nickname should speak for itself. Also She is more involved than that to the center plotline(although the detail is still not clear given the story is still ongoing)

  • February 9, 2014 at 10:12 amTerrorhunt

    @Zephyr.

    I too, hoping for a StB figures. The Figmas to be precise.

  • February 9, 2014 at 10:22 amufo

    So we have Gigliola Ghirardi trying to kill Natsuki and Asagi. Yet, Asagi wants someone to stop Vatler from killing Gigliola. And Akatsuki has the nerve to call Vatler out for going so far? Hello, your opponent is out for your life here people! Little things like this just spoiled what is a good episode…

    • February 10, 2014 at 9:51 pmHanabira.Kage

      Setting a whole bunch of vicious snakes on someone, making them bite and tear at that person’s skin and flesh is overdoing it, and not in the least bit humane. They may be criminals, but they have human rights too.

      • February 12, 2014 at 12:31 pmBlackBriar

        The funny thing about that statement is that she isn’t even human to begin with.

  • February 9, 2014 at 10:31 amewok40k

    That villain in glasses (evil twin of Shiroe?) who did see thru Notaria’s ruse and is oddly calm and easygoing… There might be more to him than meets the eye.
    And note how Akatsuki chose to take up on Vatler’s offer of taking loli-Natsuki to his yacht. Yes, he has every reason NOT to trust Vatler, but that way he removes the combat from the island and civilians, inhabitants and tourists alike.
    Most shounen protagonists would probably have opposed Vatler, even maybe fought him. Akatsuki has the common sense to not create more enemies than he already has (think of it as of variation of Occam’s razor).
    Also, DAT finger-sucking scene!

    • February 9, 2014 at 12:57 pmjrj

      Sir, you have really good eyes. That glasses dude is one of the most mysterious person in the story so far. All it is known at this point in the LN is that he has a connection with the lion king org and his last name is Itogami, the same as the island’s name (how important this connection is is not clear)… I have to say, he looks more handsome than what I got from the LN lol

  • February 9, 2014 at 11:38 amTez

    Look like Vatler is going to get put on his ass next week… Can’t wait!

  • February 9, 2014 at 11:58 amMoburo

  • February 9, 2014 at 1:29 pmjrj

    another solid episode :) for some reason I felt some of the faces in this episode are distorted, but they ended up looking better (Kojo somehow looks a little more handsome anyone?)
    Also this episode revealed a little more about familiars. Most vampires from the Chaos Bride Clan has familiars with “intelligent weapon” forms (the vampire with the lance from the Angel faux arc, and the whip from this episode), where as vampires under the forgotten warlord’s blood tend to be more of straight power, like the ones Vatler wields.
    As to the comments about La Folia, don’t worry, there are still opportunity for her to show up in the next arc, depending on where the anime will stop.
    lastly, thanks for the coverage as always, Zephyr!

    • February 9, 2014 at 3:19 pmzztop

      @jrj:One common trait I’ve seen with 3rd Progenitor-related vampires shown so far is that they are sadistic and love inflicting violence on other people, like Gigliola and Beatrice Basler(I recall you saying she was also 3rd-progenitor related).

      So I’m wondering if this means the 3rd Progenitor themselves has the same personality type, passed down to descendants.

      Re glasses guy: You say his last name is Itogami.I recall the 1st arc saying Itogami Senra designed and planned the island,meaning glasses is a relative or descendant of some kind.

      • February 9, 2014 at 3:31 pmjrj

        well, Chaos Bride herself shows up in vol.7 I think. From what I remember, she is playful, and you can even call her naughty, but I don’t recall her being sadistic (unless beating Vatler counts lol). Each clan is defined by its signature abilities, but maybe there is some truth to the personality traits too haha.

        As to the Itogami glasses guy, all I know are what I wrote above and some of his abilities (which was subtly hinted at this episode), the connection about the name and his objectives are still mystery even in the current plotline.

      • February 9, 2014 at 3:36 pmzztop

        @jrj: I see. I’m surprised the anime handsome-ized glasses guy, after hearing he was never illustrated in the LNs. And, thank you for your elaborations!

      • February 9, 2014 at 3:36 pmboingman

        Sounds like he might be more powerful then than the Witch of Novaria? Wonder how they managed to imprison him.

      • February 9, 2014 at 6:17 pmjrj

        @boingman, I won’t be surprised if he is indeed more powerful than Aya, given that he negated Aya’s guardian (the armor thing) with a mere touch (that is basically his only known ability), and not affected by Aya’s magic field (compared to those two in the beginning of the episode)… I am curious too how he got captured by presumably Natsuki in the first place… guess we can only find out when the author write more about him in the current plotline haha

  • February 9, 2014 at 2:06 pmdaikama

    jrj: As to the comments about La Folia, don’t worry, there are still opportunity for her to show up in the next arc, depending on where the anime will stop.

    YAY! More La Folia = win as far as I’m concerned. Thanks for the explanations as always. You do a good job of adding info w/o being too spoilerish IMO.

    Not sure how the LN translation is progressing, but when the season’s over I plan to read what’s been TL’d for this series (assuming something’s been TL’d). My impression is that the anime is doing a pretty good job overall and is a faithful adaptation, but I also get a sense of some details being cut/a bit too fast pacing so that more arcs can be covered (i.e.anime adaptation SOP).

    —————-

    OT/FYI: Some nice TL has finally adopted Mondaiji-Taichi on BT and is translating at sonic speeds (like one chapter every 3-4 days). :D

    • February 9, 2014 at 2:07 pmdaikama

      O.o… not sure what happened, but this was supposed to be a reply to jrj’s post above.

    • February 9, 2014 at 3:42 pmjrj

      thanks man :) I enjoy doing it, but I really appreciate the comment :)
      Assuming they finish vol.6 arc (before the backstory arc), then La Folia will have one more chance to show up, and she will be as fun as ever, if not more haha (of course at Kojo’s expense). I do hope there will be translation project for this LN, since the story is quite good despite some of the common flaws of this type of work haha.

      as far as Mondaiji goes… all the main trio and black rabbit are in grave pinch in the latest volume that I read, so I am not sure what will happen, given there is still no date for vol.9 :( But I guarantee that the story became much more gripping in these later volumes that the anime didn’t show, so it’s definitely worth a read too.

      • February 9, 2014 at 3:54 pmzztop

        Someone’s working on translating vol 7-8 into English on bakatsuki , and may translate vol 9 if all goes well.

      • February 9, 2014 at 6:56 pmdaikama

        @zztop: FYI – The TL who cranked out the Eng. translation for Mondaiji vol. 05 is registered not to finish up vol. 03 & 04 along with vol. 06. A different TL registered for vol. 07 (all of it), and just posted his/her first update in months. Hopefully that person is now able to post vol. 07 TL on a much more frequent basis, but at this point I wouldn’t expect vol. 07 let alone vol. 08 complete Eng. TL anytime soon.

        ———————–

        @jrj: I actually have a fairly good idea of the pinch the pinch the No Names are facing as of vol. 07-08 via some summary spoilers. All I can say is that if a 3 digit number is that strong, I can’t even imagine a single digit. O.O Definitely worth the read as you say. IMO, the 2nd-half of the anime series (“Pest arc”) gives a pretty good indication about the real nature of the series, but unfortunately the first few eps might have already given some viewers the wrong impression – particularly about Izayoi.

        As for STB, hopefully we’ll get that one last La Folia scene before the seasons over. :D

      • February 9, 2014 at 7:09 pmdaikama

        Gah! Bad typo my comment above.

        Delete the word “not” in first line/sentence. Should read: “…is registered to finish up vol. 03 & 04 along with vol. 06.”

      • February 9, 2014 at 9:38 pmzztop

        @daikama:Sorry, I was referring that someone’s currently translating STB vol 7-8.

      • February 9, 2014 at 11:49 pmdaikama

        @zztop: No worries. :D Someone translating STB is good news to me. Look forward to reading it once the anime has finished.

      • February 10, 2014 at 12:27 ambelatkuro

        given there is still no date for vol.9

        Volume 9 is already out for Mondaiji since November last year. B-T already has the illustrations for it.

      • February 10, 2014 at 9:34 amjrj

        @belatkuro, that is a common numbering issue for a lot of LNs. I would rather call the one you refer to as vol. 8.5 since it is not a continuation of the main plotline, but rather a short story collection. So the “real” vol.9 is yet to be released…

        @daikama, given that 3-digit number was a final human trial, I can only guess that 2-digit and 1-digit must be legendary gods of some sort lol… probably stuff like Indra, God from bible, etc.

  • February 9, 2014 at 3:19 pmboingman

    Zephyr, I am disappoint. You missed that Asagi panty shot of her when they were forced to the ground by Rias-senpai’s attack. :(

  • February 9, 2014 at 3:25 pmzztop

    Synopsis and cover art for Strike the Blood LN vol 10, out this March:
    http://forums.animesuki.com/showpost.php?p=5004347&postcount=1218

  • February 9, 2014 at 3:32 pmzztop

    Kiliga-Gilika looks like Dhalsim’s crazier,sinister cousin :D
    http://static3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20080204231650/marvelvscapcom/images/f/fb/Mvc2-dhalsim.jpg

  • February 9, 2014 at 9:02 pmAL33T

    Lol honestly I’m not sure who is best girl in this show. All of them are great. But we all know who will win in the end.

    And unlike most harem shows, I will be happy with it.

  • February 9, 2014 at 9:58 pmechykr

    http://randomc.net/image/Strike%20the%20Blood/Strike%20the%20Blood%20-%2017%20-%20Large%2021.jpg

    Sayaka: O___O!!!

    http://randomc.net/image/Strike%20the%20Blood/Strike%20the%20Blood%20-%2017%20-%20Large%2022.jpg

    Sayaka: NOOO!!!! T___T (Instantly regrets not sticking her foot into Kojou’s mouth last episode before Yukina arrived to catch her on her act)

    XD

    • February 10, 2014 at 2:05 amc2710

      Why not have all 3 of them in a room for H moment???

      • February 10, 2014 at 7:23 amKami

        Or Yukina can GTFO and quit cockblocking everyone.

  • February 9, 2014 at 10:03 pmechykr

    Asagi pretty much tears down the typical “Damsel in Distress” or “Battle Girl” stereotype by using her wits and uber-hacking skillz to outsmart the Dhalsim-lookalike, rather than engage in any combat herself, being unable to anyway. You go girl.

    (Asagi also graces the perverted ones amongst us audience with this week’s obligatory ecchi service. Hint: Light green, twice. )

    • February 10, 2014 at 4:52 pmboingman

      Twice? I only saw it once. Wonder where I missed t.

  • February 10, 2014 at 4:02 amc2710

    SILVERLINK… Way to go man…

    Its a visual quality porn weekly for me and gotta love Koujo’s harem….

    They’re staffed by girls with cutely strong disposition and they carry themselves well…

    Though La Folia’s “harem” is more desirable

  • February 10, 2014 at 7:21 ammilina

    will akatsuki end up with asagi or yukina?

    • February 10, 2014 at 9:35 amjrj

      why not both? this is a possibility that the author has hinted in a short story written that set in place about 20 or so years in to the future of the present timeline haha

  • February 10, 2014 at 11:14 pmJHN

    I admit, I had a laughing fit when Vatler went all rape on Gigliola.
    I think my evilness was showing. ^_^;

  • February 11, 2014 at 1:32 amCursive Eve

    Hmmmmm, I’m starting to think that new guy that was talking to Aya might’ve been Kojou’s father. But its just a guess. xD. I wonder if anyone thinks the same? I’m also wondering if Kojou and Avrora had anything going on with each other in the past, even though Vatler said he was in love with her. I have a feeling he might’ve been lying.

    Just a couple of theories. xD.

  • February 12, 2014 at 9:26 pmaprub

    idiot harem character

  • February 12, 2014 at 10:44 pmMAVMAN

    Why does this series remind me so much of Toaru Majutsu No Index? It has all the same good/bad elements and is so similar in a lot of ways: good comedy, awesomely strong MC (tho I like Kojos powers a lot more, better to look at than cancelling other ppls powers, harem (a bit more blatant in StB tho), short arcs that never seem to form a fully cohesive plot outside of referencing previous events, and despite its numerous flaws still awesomely entertaining. Hopefully they do what Index didn’t: get to a place where all the small stories finally come together and cover the entirety of the LNs.

  • February 13, 2014 at 8:49 amYanDaMan

    Im glad Valter finally did something helpful for once, everytime he’s about to fight Akatsuki always come and steal the show, forcing him to take a backseat, even though the whole reason he does “bad” things is so he can fight. I still dont see Valter as a bad guy at all, he’s neutral good in my eyes.