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Spice and Wolf – 04 »« Spice and Wolf – 02

Spice and Wolf – 03

Summary:

On their way into the port of Pattsio, Lawrence wonders if it’s okay for Horo not to hide her face because people might know about her human form. Horo, however, reveals that the villagers keep secret about that in exchange for a good wheat harvest. Still, she doesn’t think that anyone will notice her because they’ve forgotten about her. Once the two enter the city, Horo is thrilled to see all the food in the market – particularly the apples – but Lawrence doesn’t pay her any heed and talks about business until she specifically says that she wants to eat apples. Horo ends up nearly filling their cart with apples from the single coin that Lawrence gives her to spend, but she refuses to let Lawrence have one even though it was his money. After Horo finishes off the apples and the two get a room at an inn, they head to the docks to a trading company so that Lawrence can sell his furs. The trader initially offers Lawrence 132 silver coins for the 70 furs, but Lawrence manages to convince him to bump that offer up to 140 silver coins. He’s ready to accept that amount, however Horo stops him and takes over the negotiations.

Horo first points out that there is a fruit smell to the furs, and she then has the merchant pull on the fur to show how strong it is. She spins stories on both these points, and so the merchant raises the offer to 200 silver coins. Horo gets him to go up even further to 3 silver coins per fur for a total of 210 silver coins. Lawrence is flabbergasted by this and later questions if Horo has been a merchant before, so she reveals that it was due to a smart merchant who was passing through the village a fairly long time ago. As for the fruit smell, Horo admits that it was from all the apples she bought earlier. That night, Lawrence meets with Zeren about the silver coins deal and questions if the story about the silver revaluing is true. Zeren nervously reveals that he heard about it in a mine, but Lawrence decides to accept his reassurances and moves on to talking about Zeren’s share. It turns out that Zeren wants just 10 silver coins on top of 10% of the profits, and Lawrence accepts. Afterwards, in their room, Lawrence tries to teach Horo the difference between the coins of various countries, and though she insists on learning them, she soon falls asleep.

The next morning, after finalizing the deal with Zeren, Lawrence shows Horo a foreign coin that has a high purity of silver and is quite popularly used. It’s the rival of the coin they use, and Lawrence goes over how, when a foreign currency dominates the market, it’s the same as losing a war. As Horo realizes, this means that a country could defeat its rival by raising the purity in its silver, and that’s why Lawrence thinks Zeren might not be lying. The two then pay a visit an acquaintance of Lawrence’s who is in the money exchange business, though this man Weiss is more interested in Horo than anything else. Lawrence gets pissed off at how Horo blushes at Weiss’s advances, but Horo uses it to get Weiss to pass her some coins so that she can listen to the sound of them jingling against each other. She claims not to be able to tell a difference, but when speaking privately with Lawrence afterwards, she reveals that the new coins have a slightly duller sound, making Lawrence realize that the purity actually went down. As Lawrence tries to figure out what to do, he wonders how Zeren profits from this, and Horo laughs at him for being deceived. She points out that Zeren gets 10 silver coins no matter what, and so he can’t lose even if Lawrence doesn’t make any money.

To help Lawrence, Horo tells of how wolves climb trees because it allows them to see the hiding places of their prey. She thus suggests that Lawrence look at this from a new point of view: what if it wasn’t Zeren scheming and someone else had asked him to do this? Lawrence quickly figures out that there is indeed a way to profit by buying silver coins that are declining in value, and he decides to pay a another visit to the trading company.

 
 
 

I wish I had a Horo who could sell things at 50% markup. I’m not too surprised by this though since it fits perfectly with the mystique of her character and how confident she is sometimes of her abilities. Being alive for so long means that she probably has a lot of skills Lawrence doesn’t know about yet. Lawrence, on the other hand, seems a bit naive in his dealings with Zeren. I don’t think the stuff Horo suggested was that hard to figure out, especially since they had already previously talked about someone scheming.

On the whole, I still think that this show has a lot of interesting aspects, but it also hasn’t really grabbed me yet (I feel like I’m using that word a lot these days). That is to say, I don’t find Horo’s character and the entire silver coins plot to be enough to carry the entire show, so I keep wondering if there’s going to be something a bit more compelling (maybe exploring Horo’s past or having the couple encounter some bad situation). As I mentioned last week, I’m not too keen on the Middle Ages economics aspect and it feels like there’s a lack of energy sometimes in this show. Still, there’s nothing better to watch on Tuesdays, so I’ll probably keep up with this.

January 22, 2008 at 8:18 pm
32 comments »
  • January 22, 2008 at 8:22 pmbewdz

    First! I should expect Show Spoiler ▼

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:26 pmGenestarwind

    I like Horo’s smile though :) Very charming and attractive xD

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:26 pmMaimeDaifuku

    I’m wooting this all the way to the bank! (no pun intended)

    but yeah, i totally understand omni. Im reading the manga (whatever they have scanned anyways) and it doesnt seem too bad though the main plot hasnt reared its head yet…

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:28 pmE_I

    I watch this show just for Horo. She’s awesome.

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:31 pmKatsura

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:35 pmAisha

    LOL!!! I LOVE THIS SHOW!! but..do u think that horo and the merchand w\e his name is she travels with like each other?

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:43 pmHei

    I love this series yes including the ending that makes no sense

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:43 pmMike

    I keep wondering if there’s going to be something a bit more compelling

    Yes there will be… just wait :)

  • January 22, 2008 at 8:53 pmFlareKnight

    Well personally am enjoying things. Horo really is worth watching the show for on her own. Who needs plot when she’s around? :)

    But really should be interesting to see what happens. Since they are getting into a possibly dangerous situation. Toss in things like what may happen if the Church finds out about Horo and tries to take her out. Plus the seriousness of what may have happened in her past.

  • January 22, 2008 at 9:01 pmstalkingpanda

    Horo is the show right now, but it’d be interesting to see the merchant get wealthier and wealthier (maybe he’ll lose a lot of it at some point for drama) and we’ll see some major transactions taking place (including body guards or something). Or else the trading aspect will be a side plot and this show will mainly be a romance where Horo will probably die at the end fighting the church.

  • January 22, 2008 at 9:09 pmShinndou

    Omni, it’s probably going to be a slice-of-life show. Don’t expect any trainwrecks like in Shigofumi or True Tears.

  • January 22, 2008 at 9:12 pmSir Drk Sha

  • January 22, 2008 at 9:47 pmYuri Rocks

    Actually, I am enjoying this show more than the people who have posted so far. The reason, I think, is because I started watching the show with Horo being the focal point, and Lawrence being more of a foil. Horo, for all her wisdom still is a wolf, and as such her thought processes and patterns are at times more primitive. To me, the emphasis on money changing and bartering economies is not really meant to be taken as exigesis on the Medieval economic structure, but more of an aspect of life that Horo needs to adapt to because the world she lives in is phasing her out. Thus, the pacing will likely not be incredibly fast and gripping, but more subtle.

  • January 22, 2008 at 10:27 pmdivine

    @Omni:

    You should watch the ハチミツとクローバー (Honey and Clover) drama on Tuesdays. I’m actually a bit surprised you haven’t started watching it already, especially since you mentioned the CM about it before. Episode 3 just aired today and judging from episodes 1 & 2, I have to say I really like the feel/portrayal of the show so far. It doesn’t come off as cheesy at all and has the right amount of humour/drama in it so far in comparison to the anime (I haven’t read the manga).

    This is coming from someone who’s still following the Negima drama (for better or worse). Speaking of which, it seems like no one is watching the Negima drama as I’m the only one updating ANN with info about it. /lol

  • January 22, 2008 at 11:07 pmTensai Otaku

    OMG next ep he is going to….OMG!!!…have you imagined …..have to take off fleas from your PE…..IS after some real animal SEX!!!and if some try to reach your ass……
    (LOLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL)
    :D :D

  • January 23, 2008 at 12:19 amMike

    @Shinndou

    This is definitely not going to be a slice-of-life show, I guarantee it ;)

  • January 23, 2008 at 12:33 amEnd0rphine

    @Tensai Otaku

    lol…. you have a vivd imagination =P

  • January 23, 2008 at 12:42 amcalde

    slice of life…or spice of life, and wolf.
    This show is all about relationship of Lawrence and Horo the wolf, and the money and trading aspect is the spice of the story. ”Spicy wolf” doesn’t kick any butt, but I enjoy watching this show anyway. Horo is so lovable and fun to watch.

  • January 23, 2008 at 3:09 am43252

    well, it cant end well. One is living max 100 years another one has been around for 800 already or more.

  • January 23, 2008 at 3:22 amAmythyst

    yeah i can’t wait for the subs XD

  • January 23, 2008 at 4:02 amGod~knows

    Economics RULES!! XD well I know wolf and spice is not for adrenalin addicts so I doubt it would satisfy anyone in that aspect.Anyway i’ll be keeping up with the series since for a seinen type show its pretty darn good.

  • January 23, 2008 at 4:53 ammutio

    Well, you can indeed say this show has been kind slice of life genre so far.
    But what I’ve heard from the novels the story gets really dramatic later.
    Show Spoiler ▼

    A pity there isn’t a translation project out for this novel like for Haruhi. I guess I’ll go and order the books from Amazon at some time in the future (when my savings allow me to do).

  • January 23, 2008 at 7:24 amMike

    @mutio, I’ve read up to novel #4, and so far there hasn’t been much of what you said.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    well, now I just need to wait ’til more of the novel are translated…. meanwhile I’ll settle for the anime Horo ;)

  • January 23, 2008 at 9:33 amShin

    Call me a furfag, but Horo is hot!

  • January 23, 2008 at 10:55 amkindaichi

    somehow when i watched this episodes,it felt like i was studying economics again.damn,i hate econs.

  • January 23, 2008 at 1:41 pmyFANTgirl

    I don’t understand how people could not like the economics part of the episode. It’s a thousand times better than some trainwreck everyone seems to anticipate.
    slice-of-life + economics =

  • January 23, 2008 at 1:43 pmyFANTgirl

    ooops. the last part was cut off. ah well…

  • January 23, 2008 at 2:44 pmyanipheonu

    http://randomc.net/image/Spice%20and%20Wolf/Spice%20and%20Wolf%20-%2003%20-%20Large%2016.jpg

    Why did I immediately think of something dirty when I saw this?! Damn interwebs are corrupting my brain…

  • January 23, 2008 at 5:40 pmYonsil

    I agree, entirely.
    This show lacks energy…well…duh
    Its MIDDLE AGE AND A BORING MERCHANT TRAVELING WITH SOME WEIRD FOX LADY.
    AND THEY HAPPEN TO BE VOICED BY BOTH CRITICAL CHARACTERS FROM CODE GEASS [Lulu, Karen]
    If it wasn’t them and the production team [amazing...period], I would watch it for educational purposes [lol].

  • January 23, 2008 at 8:51 pmGintama

    This anime is pretty orignal

  • January 24, 2008 at 12:48 amBROOKLYN otaku

    @tensai otaku.. HILARIOUS!! nigga I FELL OF MY LITTLE CHAIR!! fleas!!!hahaha
    but check out that pick with the dude who looks like he totally SMELLIN HER TAIL!!! HAWT!!!!

  • January 24, 2008 at 9:31 amTom

    This has to be the smartest show I’ve seen in a while, when was the last time trade economics ever made it to the list of anime themes? The show deserves a round of applause for its originality, yet all the while people seems to care more about whether there’s going to be romance between Lawrence and Horo.