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Luck and Logic – 03

「理想か 現実か/」 (Risō ka genjitsu ka)
“Dream or Reality”

Luck and Logic wisely decides to develop its characters before diving into a larger plot, to mixed results.

This week, Luck and Logic relegated the bulk of screen time towards developing one of its central characters. Yurine Tamaki is a girl whose core philosophies concern the sanctity of life. We learn that from a very early age, she’s wanted nothing more than to prevent senseless death and help preserve lives everywhere. Throughout the episode, she struggles with potentially having to breach these principles in her obligations as a logicalist.

I do appreciate Luck and Logic’s attempt to further flesh out its main cast—especially its arguably least memorable member. Not to say that Yurine was an uninteresting character herself, just that she was overshadowed by more striking personalities, such as her peers Maxwell, Asuha, and even her convenanter (I still can’t get over some of these terms) Venus. Luck and Logic’s third episode does much to make Yurine a far more compelling character than in past weeks by elucidating some of her personal goals.

That being said, Yurine’s development was mired by an unfocused character arc. The episode started by establishing that one of Yurine’s intentions is to be the leader of her squad—one which apparently ties her to someone back home (wherever that may be). This certainly tied in well with her superiority complex last episode (what with the Logic hours or whatever), as well as her disappointment and frustration during its final scene. Exploring this quirk might have led to some deeper insight into why she is so insecure and what past incidents might have caused it.

However, the episode almost immediately diverges focus onto Yurine’s humanitarian concerns, and her unwillingness to take life. While this is an interesting development, it doesn’t logically follow last week’s episode nearly as well as her aspirations to be leader did (and the fixation on power and escape from dealing with personal issues it might’ve entailed). Instead of concentrating on this, the episode still gives attention to the conflict between Yurine and Tsurugi—which itself was predicated on Yurine’s desire to be leader. As a result, the episode’s third act doesn’t resolve with a substantial level of satisfaction, since it deals with an issue that hasn’t been as well-built in preceding weeks.

Despite that, though, I do feel closer to Yurine as a character. We’ve now been exposed to a deeper part of her personality, and her struggles with addressing it in a business where killing is part of the job. Would I have liked it if this aspect of her was at least mentioned in previous episodes? Yes (if it actually was, then it should have been made more prominent to lay the groundwork for episode three).

However, I’m still glad that this show made some solid attempt at fleshing out one of its leading characters. I’m hoping that going forward, Luck and Logic will spend the same amount of time providing the personal motivations, past demons, and deeper character personalities of its other main characters before thrusting the show into a grander narrative. It seems that the end of this episode will perhaps provide some deeper character insight into Athena, and why Tsurugi’s compassion inspires her so intensely.

Also—quick note—was it also a little weird for others that the Chief suited up, like, out of nowhere? Shouldn’t her on-screen action debut be saved for something where the stakes were a tad bit higher? Yurine’s role in the climactic battle could have been far more valuable if the chief was back at base, barking the same orders. I’m getting the feeling that it’s something to do with pushing sales for some sort of…merchandise.

January 25, 2016 at 4:41 pm
26 comments »
  • January 25, 2016 at 4:50 pmAex

    “All over the place” definitely describes this episode. Where did the need to kill the enemy come from, and since when was that even an option? I thought defeat equaled KO and that was it, but suddenly certain attacks kill? That escalated quickly.

    Weakest episode so far. Focus, people.

  • January 25, 2016 at 5:39 pmqwert

    I hate it when a show throws away logic (haha) in favor of advancing character development. The admitted strategy for dealing with the Succubus/Incubus was getting the damage out fast before they could power up and just run off. So they decide to toss all of their damage dealers against the Incubus where one of them simply acts as a distraction… and then puts the groups shield and healer against the other one…

    • January 26, 2016 at 6:39 pmAlec

      Apparently, saving lives aren’t their first priority

  • January 25, 2016 at 6:06 pmYogo

    • January 27, 2016 at 7:11 pmChromeNova

      LOL, that’s what I thought too when I saw the screencap on the front page, and I was wondering if this was actually an ecchi anime or something. I even tried to Ctrl + F to see if anyone said tits or boobs in the comments/review, haha.

  • January 25, 2016 at 6:21 pmAmiluhur

    I’m a bit concerned by the fact that Tamaki, despite having lead a team that eliminates monsters, suddenly hesitated to deal with them. That would be fine if that’s how she rolls with things (perhaps she only let the other two to deal the final blow and never dirtied her own hands), but the way she spent the episode getting all emo and basically dragged Yoshichika down during the fight is just banal.

    • January 25, 2016 at 7:32 pmN

      Tamaki didn’t try to stop him, and I think there was much Yoshichika could have done in the situation. He’s the shield, remember? If anything, I’m more inclined to blame the captain- I get that she wanted to teach Tamaki a lesson, but putting the defence guy and the healer together reeks of a bad idea. She intervened, but still… her insistence left a sour taste in my mouth, more so than Tamaki being “emo”.

    • January 26, 2016 at 1:16 amKaleRylan

      You seem to be missing the point, which is totally fair since the show had never established the point before and didn’t explain it well here.

      They DON’T kill the monsters they fight. They knock them out. This is actually important because the monsters possess humans to exist on Earth. For some reason, in this episode, the commander decides they need to KILL the Succubus, not knock her out (not clear what this does to anyone she trance-jacked). This is presented as a way of dealing with Tamaki’s issues, but as Jig pointed out, this hadn’t been established as her issue.

      Going into this episode, we’d been told her issue was that she wanted to be in charge, then about half-way through the episode it becomes about killing, which had nothing to do with the first issue, then at the end she makes up with Tsurugi about the leader thing, even though that’s not what she got over in the episode; she got over killing.

      Really, the episode was a mess.

  • January 25, 2016 at 6:29 pmmarsh381

    I’m agreeing with you on this one. While I do appreciate character-centric episodes (as long as the plot or world building keeps on moving forward), this one was….eh. Yurine has to be one of myleast favorite characters just because of her personality. I was hoping that this would shed some light on her character in a different manner (like her lead-complex which would have tied in well with the 2nd ep), but this whole “I cannot kill” bit was really….awkward. I mean I thought when they defeated them the actual human/animal that was being possessed would still be alive (though still hurt).

    Why should she care about killing the foreigners themselves? Then again I guess this is a matter of transition errors as the foreigners in the TCG actually live in their own world and have own lives. If the anime actually touched upon this then it would be understandable why she wouldn’t want to kill them, but now the foreigners are just depicted as these things that like to jack things up. Also considering the starter decks are Yurine and Maxwell orientated, it would be understandable while they’re advertising them more in the show (though I prefer Maxwell due to her being more enjoyable).

    • January 25, 2016 at 6:32 pmmarsh381

      Also, am I the only one thinking that Lucifer and Olga when end up together? These things tend to happen with the completely useless character in team ups, the tend to get the overpowered partner.

    • January 25, 2016 at 6:58 pmAex

      They didn’t explain it well so it’s just a guess, but based on how seriously they harped on it, but I think she killed the human that got Trancejacked, too. It’s still weird how that suddenly popped up instead of the usual separate-after-defeat. Could’ve used a better explanation.

  • January 25, 2016 at 6:52 pmQuack

    I think this episode certainly could have made things clearer (it’s like they tried to cram all of Yurine’s personal problems into one episode instead of revealing them one by one), but here’s what I got from watching:
    1) Yurine’s hesitation to deliver the killing blow comes partly from the fact that she’s primarily a healer (she’s too used to having Chloe and Asuha deliver the final blow), and partly because she’s a natural pacifist. If most of her hours come from dealing with the aftermath of the battle instead of being thrust directly into it, then some reluctance is normal, leader or not.
    2) Their usual protocol is to get them to separate from the host and contain them, not kill (I’m going off the first and second episodes for this). I remember them mentioning something about the incubus and succubus- maybe that was what necessitated a kill in this particular scenario. Asuha strikes as the sort who’d kill without complaint if the job demanded it, and Chloe… she doesn’t seem like the sort to think deeply about this.

    I think what we’re supposed to get from this that Yurine (and even Tsurugi to a lesser extent) is that being a leader means sometimes doing things you don’t like and accepting them, but yeah, the episode suffers from trying to do too much. Emotionally, though, I think it resonated with more than episode 2 did.

    I have a feeling this that is the kind of show I’ll end liking despite its (sometimes glaring) flaws.

    • January 25, 2016 at 7:03 pmAex

      But we didn’t see anything to separate the host in Ep 1, just a Logic Drive. So why was Tamaki’s lethal while Chloe’s wasn’t? That feels like it needs to be explained.

      • January 25, 2016 at 7:19 pmQuack

        I suspect it might have something to do with card game mechanics (the anime is basically a twelve episode ad for Bushiroad’s latest TCG), but for an in-universe explanation, maybe it has to do with the innate nature of partner (Venus and Valkyrie- I’m not familiar with mythology)?

      • January 25, 2016 at 7:39 pmAex

        Venus is the Roman goddess of love, and Valkyrie is Norse, she ushers worthy warriors to heaven after death in battle. Maybe the fact that it’s kinda backwards is what annoys me, but given the personality they gave Artemis(whose supposed to be a super-serious hunter goddess and hate men), it probably isn’t a good idea to rely on strict mythology views.

    • January 25, 2016 at 9:00 pmmarsh381

      Now that you mention it, they were required to contain the foreigners in ep 1 & 2 while this is the first time they were ordered to kill. Plus the question is why do they keep the foreigners at their base after defeating them? Okay, so I guess thinking about it, Yurine’s hesitation is now understandable….is just that this episode was a clusterf*ck of stuff.

    • January 25, 2016 at 11:01 pmpuppygod

      Their usual protocol is to get them to separate from the host and contain them, not kill (I’m going off the first and second episodes for this). I remember them mentioning something about the incubus and succubus- maybe that was what necessitated a kill in this particular scenario.

      As I understood, Incubus and Succubus were repeated offenders, and they have ability to run away when severely wounded. So attacking them with non-lethal level of force would result with them popping out of our plane only to return later and cause more damage and claim more victims. And their ability to power-up from their victims made them serious threat if not contained. So there was very good rationale about killing them.
      And I think that even if he understood why it had to be done, Tsurugi was still not OK with that, even more than Yurine.

      • January 26, 2016 at 1:26 amKaleRylan

        I think part of Tsurugi’s issue, and it’s a problem with the episode itself as people have discussed, is they didn’t try anything else. They sent all their offense after the incubus and their healer and tank after the succubus and when they couldn’t defeat it (obviously) they decided they had to kill it without every attempting anything else.

        What made it even stupider is Chloe (I believe that’s the name; sword girl) didn’t even need to go with for the incubus kill. She was a decoy. Tsurugi EASILY could have done that. Should have actually, he’s a tank. Then the teams wouldn’t be so unbalanced and Chloe could have fought the Succubus. The episode pretends it put Tsurugi and Tamaki together to make them work out their issues, but they don’t even mention the leadership conflict because halfway through the episode (as mentioned above) it suddenly decided Tamaki’s REAL issue was pacifism, not having her job stolen.

  • January 25, 2016 at 10:43 pmzztop

  • January 25, 2016 at 11:00 pmzztop

    There’s quite a few people to cover if the writing wants to go the character development route. There’s the 2 girls, the new girl, the Chief herself, the Athena-Lucifer dynamic…

    And they’ll have to go into Tsurugi’s past and history too, including his time as Hong Kong’s top Logicalist.

  • January 26, 2016 at 4:57 amMistic

    I was going to point out the strangeness and lack of focus of the morals in this episode, but it seems everyone noticed them too:

    -How the focus suddenly changes from Yurine’s leadership issues to Yurine’s humanitarian issues, equaling them both even if they shouldn’t be related.

    -The lack of explanation about why “kill them all” is the only possibility now when in the previous two episodes the “demons” were contained after their defeat.

    -The captain forces the issues by choosing the wrong teams and not giving room to other alternatives. Well, not only the captain. Even Venus urges Yurine to finally confront the succubus while she’s in the middle of providing first aid. Because, of course, that’s the role of a healer, dealing the killing blow instead of treating the injured.

    Ironically, the hero, the protagonist, doesn’t buy the morals the narrative seems intent to push on the characters. I wonder if it’s intended and if so, if it’s supposed to be a character flaw or a strong point of his.

    • January 26, 2016 at 9:39 amAex

      Athena jumped him for his compassion, so I think it’s supposed to be uncommon at least. Not wanting to bend to the captain’s mindset and general pressure will probably be a recurring thing while he looks for a better way.

  • January 28, 2016 at 1:30 pmTitanAnteus

    The chief jumping in now means while she’s strong she won’t be a deus ex machina. It also makes sense to me since Yurine and the Chief are complete opposites of each other.

  • January 28, 2016 at 11:28 pmSeph

    The important thing is that Olga got established as the Matou Shinji of the show.
    Cocky jerk that can’t do more than act all high and mighty and nobody expects him to be capable of more than that. Until he gets some big power and goes from annoying to a nuisance. Show Spoiler ▼

  • January 30, 2016 at 1:55 pmWorldwidedepp

    ep 04:

    i be direct

    Show Spoiler ▼

    Green, but with a bit yellow dots here and there