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Fate/Zero – 23

「最果ての海」 (Saihate no Umi)
“The Sea at the World’s Edge”


The banquet of kings concluded with a feast for our eyes and an emptiness in our hearts. This epic episode served as a fitting epitaph to one of the most legendary heroes participating in the Holy Grail War.

A Eulogy for Rider:

Of the three kings presented to us, Rider is the undoubtedly the closest to whom we would consider the ideal monarch. His ideology can be considered as the middle road of sorts: one which lies between the path of a ruler driven purely by pride and pleasure, and that of a leader driven solely by her ideals. As he has told Saber, he doesn’t merely strive to save others, he leads them; he not only serves others, he also serves himself. In one way or another, both of these precepts are absent in the ideologies of the other two kings, making Rider the best king in my book.

Aside from whatever his personal ideology might be, Rider’s personality has several other qualities that make him a great king in my eyes, and one of my favorite characters of the entire series. Besides his undeniable charisma, one of the most notable things about him is that he eschews the lonely life of kingship that both Archer and Saber have chosen to follow. It is abundantly clear that Rider enjoys and values the companionship of others, with his Master being the most obvious example. He also doesn’t hesitate to elevate someone weak like Waver, up to being his equal – which in my eyes, makes him somewhat like a man of the people, a king who shows the same respect to both commoner and royalty alike. In everyday conversation, you would probably be hard pressed to learn that he’s actually the King of Conquerors instead of a friendly and jolly giant. This mutual respect has its upsides as well: what better way to lead others than by returning the respect your followers show you in kind? His respect for others extends to fellow kings as well, as Rider isn’t above sharing one last pitcher of wine with his foe Archer, and nor is he above suggesting to him that they combine their Noble Phantasms in order to conquer the world. It’s scary to think that if the King of Heroes weren’t so prideful, the two of them probably would have succeeded without any difficulty.

Although I consider him a great king, it’s not the main reason why I will miss Rider the most out of all the characters who have died so far. It’s actually because to me, he was the lone voice of reason amongst all the participants in the war. Although his eventual goal like all of the Grail War participants is the Grail itself, he has realized that because its existence, like the mythical Ōkeanós he’s searching for, isn’t a sure thing by any means, so therefore he’s not willing to sacrifice everything in order to obtain it. This is an idea that none of the other Grail War participants have even stopped to ponder, and shows that he is a king who doesn’t think merely of himself, of his own ideals and dreams, but also that of the others who support him.

Rider is also epic in every sense of the word, and who doesn’t like that? Every aspect of him is larger than life – whether it’s his war chariot Gordius Wheel, his steed Bucephalus, or his ultimate Noble Phantasm Ionioi Hetairoi. In my opinion, the wonderful animation in this episode captured his majesty and grandeur very well, but it’s a shame we couldn’t see more of what the King of Conquerors at full strength was truly capable of in battle. I don’t think there was anything he could do against Archer’s most powerful phantasm, the anti-world sword Ea, as it was the perfect weapon to destroy the world created by Rider’s reality marble, but in his final epic charge on the Fuyuki Bridge, I think that there is a slim chance that his chariot might have been enough to make up the mere centimeters keeping Gilgamesh’s head in one piece. Even without it, Rider was everything I expected him to be and more. Running through the hail of weapons fired from the Gate of Babylon, he manages to block quite a few of them before getting impaled, and even then his wounds appeared to not affect his progress at all. A part of me wants to believe that even in the end when the chains restraining him stopped their chatter, Rider never gave up, for he is that type of king – an epic king, a noble king. A king who although he might be less than perfect, it also makes him more than perfect. Rider – tonight, I drink a toast in your honor.

Thoughts on Saber’s duel with Berserker:
Show Spoiler ▼

Additional thoughts:

  • Gilgamesh’s remark about only having had one friend ever most likely refers to Enkidu, whom he names a Noble Phantasm after. Its form is a chain, and it is most likely the one which held back Rider in the end.
  • I’m calling it the best confession scene of 2012 so far: Rider asking Waver to become his subject was so bromantic!
  • The psalm that Kirei recited at the end was the 23rd one. Not quite sure what to make of it yet, because I actually don’t know very much about the Bible, so feel free to leave your interpretations in the comments!


We all knew it was going to happen, but the expectation did not diminish the epicness of Rider’s death. It was inevitable, and I’m sure that even without prior knowledge in regards to Fate/Stay Night, it would’ve been easy to see the Waver and Iskander pair was never going to make it to the end. Urobuchi Gen is staging a grand play pitting two morally opposite people against each other; the last match was always going to be about them fighting for what they believe is right. Of course, I’m pretty sure Urobuchi doesn’t expect all his readers to agree or even like either of the two characters (I certainly don’t) – but their thought process is fascinating and so utterly different. Their animosity towards each other has been growing all series, and it’s finally set to culminate in one big showdown. Who will win? Only the next two episodes (or Google) will tell.

Rider’s showdown with Gilgamesh was an epic battle befitting of two great kings, and I could probably sing praises until the cows come home about how nice the animation looked. Archer really earned his title here, as that scene of him summoning his greatest treasure really drove home the image of a proud and lofty king. He really is the King of Heroes, and that was the moment I really felt like he deserved the title. That’s not to say Rider is any less impressive though – his doomed charge was every bit as exciting as any warrior’s final moments can be and his death was particularly well-handled: neither overdone nor understated. The King of Conquerors went out in a fashion befitting of someone as larger-than-life as he, and the callback to Okeanos was a great touch to the dream Iskander had strove for when he was alive. Great, great stuff, ufotable.

But – and here I’m going to play the Devil’s advocate here – Waver. Waver, Waver, Waver. I’ve never read the light novels. I don’t know what he’s like on paper. So I guess this is a question to all the LN readers out there: is Waver as moe/uke-ish as he is in the anime? I love him, I really do, but at times it seems like ufotable is playing up certain characteristics and vibes too much; it becomes distracting and really detracts from poignant, serious scenes. If Fate/Zero was a light slice-of-life show the tonal cacophany wouldn’t be as much of an issue, but it’s not – Fate/Zero is like gravity if anything. It pulls everything to the ground and the atmosphere is always somber; moe/uke tactics are seriously out of place. Perhaps whoever was involved in character development thought it would be a great way to show how young and inexperienced Waver is compared to all the grizzled veterans, but it’s not. And it’s almost inconsistent considering how down-to-Earth and grounded Waver has been in key scenes. I’m not sure which version to believe, but I certainly know which one I prefer.

Before I get crucified though, an analysis of this episode would not be complete without the mention of Lancelot and “Arthur”. Ufotable hit another homerun with this scene and the crushing despair on Saber’s face was just palpable. That girl really cannot catch a break when it comes to her ideals. But seeing her trusted subordinate in such a twisted state is completely different from hearing the rebukes of a fellow king; it’s akin to receiving a fatal wound – much more real and heavy than a paper cut will ever be. Reality certainly delivered a harsh blow to Saber as it revealed just how much her ideals twisted one of her own. Lancelot’s twisted expression was simply chilling, and I have to say it was pretty difficult to watch Arturia come to terms with his current state.

Although Berserker will probably give Saber a difficult fight, judging by how weak and delirious Kariya is, I don’t imagine he’ll beat her. Like I said, the stage has always been set for Kirei and Kiritsugu from the very beginning; those two will have their face-off, come hell or high water. I will say that Kirei’s speech – so, so so ironic – sent chills down my spine. It’s a perfect intro to the battle between the Magus Killer and the Executor, and what can I say? My body is ready for those explosive final episodes.

  • Full-length images: 24, 33, 40 (thanks to Stereoman for cleaning the caps this week!).



June 11, 2012 at 3:11 am
  • June 11, 2012 at 3:22 amImpetusZwei

    I read the novels, I found them epic, and yet this episode still brought tears to my eyes. Enkidu – Chains of Heaven – indeed the one and only ‘companion’ Gilgamesh needed, the one and only thing preventing Rider from landing a blow on Archer. King of Conquerors, tonight I drink to your courage.

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:17 pmhaseo0408

      King of Conquerors!!!! My sword and loyalty belong only to you!!!. Iskandar! Iskandar! Iskandar!.

    • June 11, 2012 at 7:35 pmAni_BEE

      Now words can describe your end Iskandar. Oh the irony that were you done in again at the gates/hands of Babylon.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:27 amStereoman

    I knew this would happen… but ugh.. RIDEEEEEER! ;A;

    • June 11, 2012 at 5:35 amMasterDragonKnight

      Farewell, my king.

      Your subjects shall tell of the legends that you left behind.

    • June 11, 2012 at 8:09 amworstof2012


  • June 11, 2012 at 3:32 amGraduation

    I’m glad this is finally over, Rider sucked anyways…

    • June 11, 2012 at 3:36 ampaiser

      i have to ask, but why???????

    • June 11, 2012 at 3:42 amXziled

      oh hell no, you did not just go there…

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:53 amBroskander

      Are you saying things in reverse like Kagura? Smelly Wench?

      • June 11, 2012 at 5:29 amMasterDragonKnight

        So what he really meant to say was:

        “I’m sad that it is over now. Rider was my favorite character.”

    • June 11, 2012 at 5:38 amAcario


      (why even bother being here if your just here to insult?)

      • June 11, 2012 at 8:08 amworstof2012

        there will be always a poster or two baiting and trying to provoke other posters for fun.

        And there will always a poster or two like you who takes it too seriously.

    • June 11, 2012 at 6:15 amSupaPairoto

      waverfag tears are delicious

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:35 ampaiser

    if anyone seen fate/stay night, they probably have different feelings about gilgamesh after seeing this episode

    • June 11, 2012 at 7:25 amImpetusZwei

      You kinda hafta remember that Show Spoiler ▼

      • June 12, 2012 at 5:30 amKoroshiyaKi

        And you should remember that they mentioned that if any man could emerge from that muck untainted it would be him. By his account you would need three times that amount if you wished to tarnish him.

    • June 11, 2012 at 7:30 amKumakaori

      So true, it was hard to see him as anything but an utter and cruel bastard in StayNight.

      Zero has given his character another page in the story, and a much needed one. He is the King of Hero’s and all the world is his garden… >)

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:35 amKit-A-Ron-Ron-Kat

    I believe the great Homer himself would appreciate the epicness of this tale.

    For the first time it felt like Gilgamesh was not just a complete narcissist prick. He showed appreciation and respect of his fellow King’s efforts, and praised Waver loyalty. He also mostly forgot his trademark ‘Zashu/Mongrel’ (even when addressing Waver).
    I found his last words to Iskander to be especially touching somehow: telling the whole world is simply his Garden (nice reference to one of the most sorely missed original Seven Wonders by the way) is typical Gilgamesh, but adding that Iskander will definitely never tire of it – basically accepting Iskander claim to try and conquer it – was a pretty nice touch.

    Overall, excellent stuff right there.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:35 amBio D

    I like to think Waver’s more eromenos of aspects just combust through the sheer presence of Alexander, for which he can be forgiven. When your loyalty enforced balls of steel are so weighty that Gilgamesh is impressed I can forgive a lot of things. Well, maybe not that pitiful warcry, but A LOT of things.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:36 amCybersteel

    I knew it! So that means Lambcelot had an affair with Guineverre but Saber is a girl so Saber might be Guineverre at the same time as she crossdresses and had an affair with herself. Either that or its yuri >=D

    • June 11, 2012 at 3:49 amMike


      Show Spoiler ▼

    • June 11, 2012 at 3:53 amShouhei

      No, Saber and Guinevere are different and separate people. Saber/Arturia married Guinevere for political reasons while keeping her own gender a secret. I think only her knights and Guinevere knew that Saber was a woman. Guinevere probably made the sacrifice knowing that it would help build a stable kingdom, but had the affair with Lancelot anyway.

      Yuri? Well, it’s always a possibility. Saber did always seem manli-ish …

      • June 11, 2012 at 8:24 amsome guy

        oh c’mon, don’t take this so seriously, man~~. Everyone knows that King Arthur was a dude and this show just HAPPENED to make him a moe blonde girl to boost rating. That’s all! Nothing more than that.

        NO need to think it hard about Guinevere or Lancelot or what not. Nor is there any need to try to rationalize a bunch of nonsense made up by the writers for this show on “Knight of Roundtable tale”.

        I’d say just enjoy the ride.

      • June 11, 2012 at 10:58 pmShouhei

        I’m not sure what you mean by “taking it so seriously”, but I am enjoying the ride. Because this show is captivating, it drives me to want to know more the characters, their history: in general how the writers incorporate history and fiction to give us this awesome series and to give these characters their identity. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being curious and wanting to share that knowledge with others who also enjoy the series as I do.
        Life has many questions, and it’s human nature to want to seek the answers.

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:05 amOni

      m not sure if the novel answered it but who were mordred’s parents can’t imagine saber was one of them

      • June 11, 2012 at 4:25 amJHN

        Spoiler tag to play safe:
        Show Spoiler ▼

      • June 11, 2012 at 4:52 amShouhei

        Show Spoiler ▼

      • June 11, 2012 at 4:58 amfragb85

        He is. Mordred was a homunculus born from Guieiverre and Arturia who underwent a transformation to a pseudo-male courtesy of Merlin. In other words a magic dick.

        I’d like to stress that I did not in fact make any of that up. Nasu is weird.

      • June 11, 2012 at 7:22 amXellos-_^

        it is Arturia and Morgana. Merlin decide to play a Prank on Arturia and gave her a extra piece of equipment for a festival. Morgana took advantage of it (might be reverse) and nine months later you go Mordred.

      • June 11, 2012 at 11:03 amBio D

        I’m just going to leave this over here:

      • June 12, 2012 at 7:01 amhoh

        Just ask, where does all that come from? the FSN game or some setting book?

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:54 amCybersteel

      So it was yuri after all >=D

      • June 11, 2012 at 8:48 amThe Moondoggie

        Still it was a very cruel yuri story. Saber had to kill Mort in the end. =(

        I wish Mort gets to fight his mom/dad as a Saber-class too in a future game. There is already a concept art for him, he looks a lot like his mom.

      • June 11, 2012 at 8:50 amThe Moondoggie

        BTW. I got used to call Mordred, Mort for some reason. Just go with it >_0

      • June 11, 2012 at 4:29 pmXellos^_-

        it was Hetero. Arturia had the right piece of equipment at the time.

      • June 12, 2012 at 3:59 amkishagi

        wait wouldn’t it be futanari if Saber was a girl and THEN obtained a dick somehow? Cause if it is then that makes it even more interesting

      • June 13, 2012 at 1:52 pmXellos^_-

        not somehow, Merlin

      • June 15, 2012 at 11:15 amD-LaN

        Wait, isn’t Mordred a dude!? But yeah, Daddy and Mommy issue in one body……Awkward is an understatement.

        BTW, he looks lk this–>http://images.wikia.com/typemoon/images/3/36/Mordred_CharacterMaterial.png

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:42 amc2710

    All the scenes with Rider-Waver were hard to watch. I was already shedding manly tears right from the start and yes paiser… Gil seems less of a jerk after this episode.

    Rider, you’ll always be in our hearts and will be missed

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:44 amMike

    but it’s a shame we couldn’t see more of what the King of Conquerors at full strength was truly capable of in battle

    they didn’t mention it in the anime, but Rider actually was at more than full strength during the fight with Gilgamesh. The three command seals Waver “wasted” turned into being massive mana boost for Rider since the command was “inexecutable”, so to speak.

    Other than the loss of the chariot, Rider was more powerful in all other aspects than he normally would be.

    • June 11, 2012 at 11:03 pmRaine

      They did mention it. Rider himself commented on it, saying that Show Spoiler ▼

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:48 amchikvn

    Rest well, king of Conqueror, Alexander, may the gods be with you.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:53 amPtolemaios00

    I find it conflicting when Gilgamesh could be so brotastic with Broskander (drinking with him, using Ea and Enkidu, letting Waver go) and yet be so sadistic in his mentoring of Kirei…

    This episode was great and fully lived up to the source material. I wonder if Nasu modeled Waver after himself; the way Iskander told him to “tell the story” makes me think.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:54 amRakkyo

    The psalm that Kirei recited at the end was the 23rd one. Not quite sure what to make of it yet, because I actually don’t know very much about the Bible, so feel free to leave your interpretations in the comments!
    The meaning of the verse is very clear in the novels so I’ll just copy paste it here. Slight spoilers though.
    Show Spoiler ▼

    So I guess this is a question to all the LN readers out there: is Waver as moe/uke-ish as he is in the anime?
    Well, the dialogues are mostly the same but the vibe comes out differently. I guess it’s because Namikawa Daisuke is voicing him.

    Now then, I wonder if there is anyone who can name this and state what it does.

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:10 amMixed Milkshake

      That key shaped shortsword is the true form of the ‘Gate of Babylon: King’s Treasure’. Gilgamesh can summon most of the contents of his treasury at will at any time, but he chooses to only uses the key form to unlock his most prized possession, ‘Ea: Sword of Rupture’ from his treasury.

    • June 11, 2012 at 10:07 ambelatkuro

      It’s been mentioned in the VN and the LN stats pages that GoB is a key shaped sword that connects to another dimension for Gil to pull out anything in his treasury. Though that said, I’ve really been wondering what it looks like as it’s been mentioned in the VN and LN but it doesn’t show him holding or using it when he uses GoB.

    • June 11, 2012 at 11:11 amKaka

      It’s like watching To aru to learn about Christianity. I mean, ok, Gen used the words in the Bible for the purpose of the story but please bear in mind that it is far from the actual and true meaning. :)

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:56 amronri

    One of the rare times where Gilgamesh actually shows some honest respect to another character.

    • June 13, 2012 at 7:10 pmSuppa Tenko

      Well Rider was so badass that Gil had to destroy the world to defeat him. Even then Rider survived Ea without using an equally destructive motion wave beam. I like how Ea is portrayed in the anime, not a huge laser but simply the end of the world.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:58 amMixed Milkshake

    Goodnight my King, sleep tight,

    Speak of your legend, your comrade shall.

    Though you may have left us on this fated night,

    Dreams of Okeanos will be forever your dwell.

    Know that it was not in vain, your final fight,

    Farewell my friend, but not farewell.’

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:28 amRikku

    The epicness… I re-watched some scenes in this episode a hundred times.

    The funny thing is, the death anniversary of Alexander, the Great, is June 10th. Fitting.

    Some information from the novels:

    * @BakaMochi : All the touching moments were still there, but I do think that Waver’s immense, K-ON-level moeness was a little exagerated and distracting. Show Spoiler ▼

    * @Kit-A-Ron-Ron-Kat : yes, I was afraid that they would mess those lines up. They didn’t – Gilgamesh sounded like a human for the first time. From the novels:

    To his worthy opponent, whose entire body was skewered from head to toe by the rain of Noble Phantasms, yet who did not stop until thwarted by the Chain of Heaven, the King of Heroes gave his greatest reward – he honored him with true feelings of admiration.

    * It’s tempting to think that, if Alexander was still with his charriot, he would still have a chance on that final sprint; but that’s just not true. Show Spoiler ▼

    Gilgamesh’s just that overpowered, and his Noble Phantasms counter Alexander’s perfectly – he’s the anti-Iskandar, in the same way that Lancelot is the anti-Gilgamesh.

    • June 11, 2012 at 10:25 amGilgamesh92

      Lancelot would be F****ed if Gil used Ea though. Ea pretty much destroys anything. Not just Iskandar.

    • June 11, 2012 at 12:27 pmJared

      I don’t think Lancelot is the anti-Gilgamesh, I think just because Gil doesn’t see berserker as worthy to use his greater treasures on that he’s able to give him a tough time.

      • June 11, 2012 at 5:55 pmkob264

        Indeed, Gil’s bigest flaw is his overwelming pride and the reason why he can be defeated by, well… lets say boys and girls in FSN.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:30 amJHN

    I’m speaking the truth when I say I already had spasms just because of the awesomeness of the casual talk between Gilgamesh and Rider.

    After the episode, I could have died a happy man.

    Oh great Iskandar, your legacy of getting even Gilgamesh to respect you will be hold dear in the hearts of many!

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:33 amLogeres

    I don’t know if this was answered in the novel, but how could Enkidu, a chain that only works against divine beings, hold Rider anyway? Is Rider a demigod?

    • June 11, 2012 at 5:22 amMasterDragonKnight

      Not sure if Rider is part god or not. But I believe that Enkidu works on anyone, just that it becomes proportionally stronger when binding beings of higher divinity.

      At the very least, it is still a sturdy chain.

      • June 11, 2012 at 6:15 amLogeres

        That would still raise the question why he didn’t just rip through it, seeing how insanely powerful every Servant is. Still, maybe he was just caught off guard, or resigned when he realized that he couldn’t free himself. At the least, it’s not completely inexplicable.

    • June 11, 2012 at 6:26 amThe_Magus_Killer

      One legend surrounding Alexander the Great’s birth claims that his ancestors were descended from Hercules who is a son of Zeus. Another is that his mother Olympias was impregnated by Zeus himself. Since belief is a powerful force that shapes the heroes summoned in Grail Wars, Rider has some bit of divinity in him, which makes Gilgamesh’s chain more effective.

    • June 11, 2012 at 6:30 amdaggeraxe

    • June 11, 2012 at 7:29 amXellos-_^

      Alenander the Greats claims to be the Son of Zeus to the Greeks and Son of Ra tot he Egyptians.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:34 amsapphirearcz

    After seeing that the power of EA, I gotta ponder how was Saber’s excaliburrr able to fight with it ><
    man.. if only Ufotable will remake the scenes of Hero Emiya using Reality Marble….

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:57 amPhnx

      If I recall correctly, a lot has to do with Gilgamesh’s pride. He considered Rider a worthy adversary and thus was willing to use Enuma Elish at max power.

      If you’re referring to how much weaker it seems in Fate/Stay Night, Gilgamesh considered Saber more like a pet for his entertainment. Thus his pride would prevent him from using Ea/Enuma Elish as full-strength even in the final battle because that would mean he considers Saber a near-equal. Gilgamesh underestimated Saber’s strength and ultimately that led to his defeat in Fate/Stay Night (even then he only admired Saber as an untouchable treasure).

      • June 11, 2012 at 12:24 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

        Add in the fact that, in the final battle, Saber had finally gotten Avalon back in her possession as well.

    • June 11, 2012 at 3:42 pml3reezer

      Spoiler tag, please.

    • June 12, 2012 at 6:41 pmMoria

      Archer went all out since the beginning with Rider. The novel says he used his full power.

      Show Spoiler ▼

    • June 14, 2012 at 7:07 amsuff

      I actually have a different theory.

      I think Ea inside of Rider’s Reality Marble is more powerful than usual, because things in Reality Marble are “not real” and more vulnerable.

      • June 14, 2012 at 11:10 amgilgamesh92

        That is not the case.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:34 amKagutsuchi

    I was really frustrated with the end result of the Rider battle. Of all the servants, he was my favourite. I mean I knew Gilgamesh was going to win, but I desperately hoped Rider would have at least landed one hit on him. Gilgamesh is a pompous SoB so I really wished Rider would bring him a little bit down to Earth.

    RIP Iskander. T_T

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:40 amClick

    I had a giant, stupid grin during Rider’s death scene. That had to have been one of the best death scenes I have ever seen in an anime so far. Rider’s death wasn’t tear-jerking or painful, but rather a joyous celebration of Rider’s relentless tenacity and unrelenting, charismatic spirit, even in the face of certain death.

    The dialogue between Rider and Gilgamesh was absolutely enthralling. Among all the characters in the Fate/Stay Night universe, Rider may be the only one Gilgamesh respected. It’s obvious that Gilgamesh sees him as a worthy rival and man, who shares his passions and desires. Not only that, but the only character to ever realize Archer’s identity without being told was Rider himself. Gilgamesh respected him so much that he not only used Ea, an anti-world to it’s full capacity, but used his most trusted Noble Phantasm, despite the clear lack of necessity. For the first time in the series, Gilgamesh is seen without his token arrogance and pride, and allowed Rider to die with dignity. While Archer may not have seen Rider as a friend or companion (which was an obvious, obvious allusion to Enkidu from his myth), his respect for Rider was peerless.

    I can’t really say anything about Rider’s and Waver’s relationship which hasn’t been said by now. All can really say is that Rider taught Waver not only the value itself, but how to be a real man.

    • June 11, 2012 at 8:28 amsome guy

      well, except that Rider’s death scene was verrry very similar to a certain hero’s death scene in SFN. I won’t writer any spoiler for SFN, but…let’s just say both scene involved Archer+victim. Too similar, in my opinion and thus feels like a bit recycled.

      • June 11, 2012 at 6:15 pmkob264

        Not at all.
        In that battle, Gill has no real interest in his foe. He chained him firs then trow a shower of weapons on him. In this one he chains Raider afther hehad half recived, half avoided the weapones of the Gate of Babylon.
        In that other battle the servant was protecting someone important to him; in this one rider is trying to conquer his enemy / rival, he is following his own goal.
        Finally that other battle was a surprice atack, this was a duel.

        In short the only similarity is the fact that in both fights gilgamesh ended up wining because of the chains.

      • June 11, 2012 at 9:43 pmClick

        Well, try to keep in mind that this kind of send off has been done dozens of times before. Unfortunately, poor atmosphere and tension building oftentimes leave such deaths severely overdone. So yes, it is a bit cliche, but there are reasons these kinds of scenes become cliches in the first place. If the scene is done well, it’s an amazing spectacle, worthy enough to be imitated again and again. Execution and is everything. Needless to say, the scene here was absolutely pitch perfect, and stood out.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:46 amMartianMage

    Well like I said a few months back… the plot needs Gil to be super arrogant for him to lose cause when he takes someone seriously it’s an inevitable curbstomp unless the challenger is someone or something that belongs in the top 5 most powerful beings in Nasuverse.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:47 amn30nl16ht

    EPICNESS!!! pure and awesome EPICNESS!!! anyway how did saber survive that attack by enuma elish at fate/stay night when it could even destroy a whole reality marble? I mean i can get why shiro survived because of the scabbard but saber should’ve been wiped out. lol, maybe its just plot armor or im thinking too logical again when this is still just an anime.

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:49 amClick

      He held back :P. And yeah, that was seriously the explanation, lol.

    • June 11, 2012 at 5:14 amyokushi

      Well, Gilgamesh wanted her alive, so it’s kinda logical to hold back.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:55 amKratos

    Last time I cried like this was for Clannad. But this time it was from awesomeness. The awesomeness of Waver becoming rider’s retainer, of archer finaly recognizing someone and something, of the speech between the both of them.

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:05 amfragb85

    Broskander died with dignity the way he wanted it. That’s right, Broskander DEFIED the Urobuchi way purely by GAR. And then Waver channels it and lives. Its nice to have some good happen amid the whole depressing tone of Zero.

    The Berserker battle was a bit disappointing for me though. I seem to remember the drawing of Arondight to be more epic in the novel.

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:07 ambakakubi

    Probably one of the best episodes of the series. I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again. GAR now includes both Rider and Archer, not just Archer alone. ;_; I’ll continue to cry now.

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:17 amSera

    Does any of you guys know the name of the track that plays when Rider charges and Gilgamesh opens GaB on the bridge?

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:20 amMasterDragonKnight

    Rider… ;_;

    I have to wonder, though. Rider can control where the Ionioi Hetairoi appears. Why did he not make it so that his army spawns closer to Gilgamesh, to prevent him from drawing Ea in time?

    Show Spoiler ▼

    • June 11, 2012 at 6:06 amMartianMage

      You’re forgetting that Shirou has main character status and plot armor. Really even with UBW there should be no way for him to compete against Gil. Humans are vastly inferior to servants.

    • June 11, 2012 at 6:11 amLogeres

      I’m not sure if Rider can control where his armies appear. In Episode 15, they only said that he can control where it “ends”, so to speak, and only roughly within a hundred meter or so. The size of his Ionian Hetairoi is fixed, which might mean that his army always appears on one side and the enemy on the other.

      Even if he could control it to an extent, Rider didn’t know about Ea, so it just might not have occurred to him.

    • June 15, 2012 at 8:34 pmhaseo0408

      In that route of the story Gigamesh was playing with Shirou the whole time until the magi of swords proove too much for him and that was his doom. Remember Gilgamesh change a lot in time skip between th two stories, he was so arrogat that Shirou was an ant to him and that was what allowed to injured the king.

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:31 amkgfj

    I cried for 5 minutes even after the episode ended. That was spectacular. I have no qualms whatsoever regarding the execution of the battles, and most importantly, Rider’s death. There was a tiny hope that Rider would be able to land a blow on Archer, but I guess like this would be fine. At the very least it takes Archer all of his most powerful weapons just to stop one man, and that is amazing given how crazily strong he is.
    And I really should have hated Archer for killing Rider (who anybody knows is one of my favourite characters all the time), but this episode makes him so human, and I nearly feel sorry for him. He looks almost bored even though he is winning :/ and how lonely he looks when he says he only has one companion for eternity (forget the exact line).
    Amazingly, the line that Kirei recites from the bible, seems to mirror Waver’s feeling after Rider’s death.
    What’s more interesting is, in the episode Rider is physically defeated, his ideology (argument with Saber) lives on, and in Saber’s case, proven to be true.

    One more question, but this might be a bit spoilerish, but I hope someone can help me to answer this
    Show Spoiler ▼

    • June 11, 2012 at 5:40 amMasterDragonKnight

      Saber does not age.

      Both Caliburn (the sword she drew from the stone) and Avalon stops her aging process. So she forever looks like a young girl.

    • June 11, 2012 at 5:41 amJHN

      Show Spoiler ▼

      • June 11, 2012 at 7:52 amMasterDragonKnight

        Now that makes me wonder.

        Perhaps Kikuko Inoue, Yukari Tamura, and Yui Horie are in possession of something similar to Avalon. After all, they are forever 17. XD

    • June 11, 2012 at 8:34 amworstof2012

      please… don’t tell me that you “actually” cried for 5 minute over some anime show. It’s not even tearjerker drama anime show here. I’d like to believe that it was just a expression, my friend, not what actually happened.

      I don’t mean to belittle anything, but c’mon you know it’s silly. Obviously with random name like “kgfj”, I shouldn’t take such trivial matter so seriously, ahem, ahem~~.

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:37 amJhacks

    Rider won……… Gilgamesh’s respect.

    Oh you silly Rider, you and your unlimited bros will never win against the sword of promised destruction. Well at least he died how he lived……… Like a total badass!

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:40 amleys

    I love how you missed Waver’s character development, which was probably the most important thing this episode.

    • June 11, 2012 at 11:01 amverdant

      Sorry, please correct me if I’m wrong because I’m not an LN reader so I might have missed a few things, but wasn’t Rider’s death and Saber finding out Berserker’s identity more important to the plot of the Holy Grail War than whatever character development Waver had in this episode?

      • June 12, 2012 at 6:46 pmMoria

        Waver Show Spoiler ▼

  • June 11, 2012 at 5:52 ambertman4

    The Rider part of the story was epic, no doubt about it. I also really enjoyed Saber’s battle with Beserker. I kind of figured out who he really was, from the OP (knight by a lake) and all the anti-Saber attitude. Their battle was beautifully choreographed. I admire the fact that bullets were portrayed realistically, as you can see it destroying the vehicles. Loved it when Saber flipped the car over and used it as a shield to get in close. The animation was top notch.

  • June 11, 2012 at 6:53 ammike

    rider is in the peak of epic epicness
    he even won gil’s respect
    and that’s an easy thing to do

  • June 11, 2012 at 7:19 amKinny Riddle

    Four down, Three to go.

    The King of Conquerors is Dead, Long Live the King.

    Waver, live on and continue his legacy, you have deserved this, earning even the respect of the normally arrogant and contemptuous King of Heroes.

    I agree with Verdant that since last episode, I get the feeling ufotable has been drawing him a bit like a moe girl, must be something to do with his bowl haircut. lol

    Speaking of moe girls, but seeing Saber slowly shed off her kingly image to reveal a distressed girl who doesn’t know what to do upon seeing someone she knew – I realized this was the true face of the tender and vulnerable girl that Shiro knew and fell in love with, the true Saber that we all knew and pitied with, who all this time had kept up with her facade of being the people’s ideal king, burying her own self, in turn, greatly affecting the lives of those around her as well – as evidenced by Lancelot’s madness.

  • June 11, 2012 at 7:29 amKinny Riddle

    Oh and to lighten up the mood, here’s some poking fun at the Rider and Waver bromance, especially concerning how Rider resupplies his Mana… (translated into English)


    • June 11, 2012 at 9:53 amD-LaN

      ………….Is it wht I imagined?

      • June 11, 2012 at 6:32 pmkob264

        Yes it is; the wonder of magic in the nasuverse is that you can transfer it to others the same way you get AIDS. Thats why is bether to have a servant of the oposite gender, unles you like yaoi or yuri.

  • June 11, 2012 at 7:32 amWuz

    I’ll never look at Lancelot the same way, ever again after this episode. Poor sod. But it’s too bad they didn’t make Saber react the same way she did in the LN, when she found out Berserkers identity. I found the LN one much more emotional.

    And loosing Rider was harder than i thought it would be…i thought i was prepared for it, but far from it. You will be missed, Iskandar, King of Conquerors. The greatest bro there ever was.

    • June 11, 2012 at 8:42 am…..

      those anime bastard writers! Now look what’ve done~~~~!!!! Wuz here will not look at Lancelot the same way because of your ridiculous butchering of our beloved Knights of the Round Table tale! It’s all your damn fault!

      OK, I kid, I kid. ah ha ha But it’s a problem with younger generation who take obviously rewrite mumbo-jumbos too seriously. Kids, learn the basics at your schools, so that you know what Knights of the Round Table is and you can watch this show for pure entertainment value and not take it seriously like Wuz. Oh, youth these days~~~~. hmm, hmm.

  • June 11, 2012 at 8:07 amJukehead

  • June 11, 2012 at 8:27 amewok40k

    I am amazed by epicness of the Rider’s final battle. Hell, epic doesnt even sstart to convey the quality of spectacle. Even Gilgamesh managed to get his best qualities off, being respectful of his opponent and magnanimous towards Waver – though he might be still more respectful to Iskander’s last command.
    I still shudder at the thought of both opponents allying to arm the Ionian Hetairoi with Gate of Babylon… ultimate conquering tool, truly fit to comquer stars themselves!

  • June 11, 2012 at 8:41 amThe Moondoggie

    A toast, to the greatest Rider class hero ever. The biggest bro in anime since forever. I wonder if the real Alexander was this bro too….

    • June 14, 2012 at 3:12 amAnonymous

      I strongly doubt that.

  • June 11, 2012 at 9:35 amchiyoko

    I believe that Kirei uses Pslams 23:3-6, with a few artistic changes.
    “He restores my soul: he leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies: you anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.”

    Usually it’s something you hear at funerals.

    • June 12, 2012 at 12:09 amBio D

      Funerals huh? That sounds about right.

  • June 11, 2012 at 10:42 amGilgamesh92

    Gilgamesh and Rider, my two favorites in Zero by far. I seriously watched some scenes in this episode at least 300 times. Iskandar was great his final charge was well done. I knew he was going to die but I didn’t expect his death scene to affect me this much. Gilgamesh was also great this episode, it was nice to see a different side of him. I really liked the face off between Gil and Waver.

    Oh yeah Enuma Elish was fucking epic. The way he used the key to open it up looked amazing. “Look up and behold, Enuma Elish!”

    10/10 to me this was the best anime episode I’ve seen in my life so far.

  • June 11, 2012 at 11:01 amLinkark

    And thus Rider, the King of Conquerors, Broskandar the Great, has finally left the war. You shall not be forgotten My King, your loyal subjects will continue singing tales of your great legacy.

  • June 11, 2012 at 12:29 pmMaster of Perzpektiba

    This is not goodbye King of Conquerors for you will continue to live within your hearts, your loyal servants will continue to follow you even in death. And we as your retainers will continue to tell about your epic tales for generations to come. Rest well My King!

    The battle between Gilgamesh and Rider reminded me of Show Spoiler ▼

  • June 11, 2012 at 2:11 pmL002

    To all those who want to know, I doubt they will show this in the anime, but here is Lancelot’s profile and how be is suitable in becoming a Berserker

    Also, for those who miss Rider, here is a GOOD parallel version of Rider if he ever becomes the President of the US.

    this dude looks like Rider too

    • June 11, 2012 at 10:17 pmD-LaN

      You can swear tht he the reincarnation of Rider lol. Can’t wait for theIndexanime to reach tht prt….

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:29 pmVince

    Truly man among men til his last breath. Your lack of presence shall be felt. I never knew Gilgamesh had not 1 but 2 noble phantasms.

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:34 pmYanDaMan

    Well we all knew this was coming, but I can’t be too sad about it. Unlike Lancer’s pitiful death, Rider died with a smile and satisfied. In the end both him and Gilgamesh still had that mutual respect for each other.

    As for Saber vs Berserker, well, his identify has been spoiled already by some guy way back without using spoiler tags. So it wasn’t that big of a surprised to me unfortunately. What I want to know though, is why Saber acted the way she did.

    I’m not too familiar with King Arthur’s legend, but I remember while reading a textbook version in middle school that Lancelot pretty much took Guinevere and ended up fighting against Arthur. Dont know how accurate this is to the actual story but anyway, wouldnt that mean they were enemies already? Why feeling sentimental all the sudden?

  • June 11, 2012 at 3:36 pmYanDaMan

    Also Verdant, I doubt Rider having his chariot would’ve made much difference. I mean, that thing would’ve been a huge target for Gate of Babylon to skewer. It was easier to dodge and parry while Rider was on his horse, but that Chariot? Those 2 oxes are gona get pwnd considering how far Rider is from them to block for them.

    • June 11, 2012 at 4:35 pmJukehead

      The Chariot is an A+ anti-army weapon. Though it didn’t really have a chance to shine, it’s pretty much a bomber that can fly at 400km/h and has the potential to annihilate Western Japan in 40 mins. Notice how it steamrolled Berserker without Rider unleashing its true potential. It could also have beaten Excalibur if Waver wasn’t there.

      That said, though the chariot could have increased Rider’s chances, the bulls were still divine (and thus susceptible to the chains). Rider’s mistake was making Archer take him seriously.

      • June 11, 2012 at 5:00 pmGilgamesh92

        So he could’ve beaten Saber?

      • June 11, 2012 at 5:46 pmCybersteel

        Yeah Rider could’ve beaten Saber if Rider wasn’t holding back. It seems there seem to be a benefit in being summoned as a moemoe girl.

    • June 12, 2012 at 6:50 pmMoria

      Against Ea? No.

      Against the Gate of Babylon? Yes, unless Gilgamesh chains everyone with Enkidu. One drawback the Gate of Babylon has is that the user is unable to move while it fires. The Gate that belongs to the prototype version of Gilgamesh is different. It can fire on motion.

  • June 11, 2012 at 4:58 pmTMH

    I think watching this episode made me grow some chest hair. So much GAR! o_O;

    I’m…not sure which Rider I prefer now. F S/N Rider will always be sexy and awesome, but Broskandar is just bloody epic!

    • June 11, 2012 at 8:23 pmbelatkuro

      The threesome, man. The threesome HCG in F/HA.

  • June 11, 2012 at 7:45 pmNymphetamine2791

    R.I.P. Rider

    It was cool to see Archer admire Waver’s loyalty though and was a good conclusion to their battle. He didn’t say anything belittling Rider or Waver and could probably sympathize with the mood around them.

  • June 11, 2012 at 8:27 pmThousand Mistress

    Lancelot o_o
    And farewell, Rider. We shall see you in your conquests soon.

    I was really impressed with Gilgamesh’s attitude towards Waver. “That loyalty, don’t waste it” and I was like that’s an unexpected change. Lol.
    But still, Lancelot. o___o (I already know who Berserker was because of the novel, it made me surprised that they had to reveal him that way)

  • June 11, 2012 at 8:45 pmDuqs

    Funny thing about the episode, and i don’t know if it’s just coincidence or really done with great timing (like the mother’s day episode) is that Alexander the great died on June 10 (or maybe 11 to some historians) in Babylon.

    Lol history repeats itself

    • June 13, 2012 at 7:51 amThousand Mistress

      And knowing the name of the place itself, it’s really coincidence. Ufotable has played it quite so well.

      I’m wondering about the next coincidence…will it be Father’s Day this time?

  • June 11, 2012 at 9:48 pmIchigomaru

    Ishkandal is THE ultimate king. He is epic in every aspect and nobody can disagree.

  • June 12, 2012 at 1:47 amRichien

    I also read the novel and I actually cried when I read the story of Gilgamesh ,literally once you’ve read the novel about Gilgamesh you’ll understand why is he “like that”

    • June 12, 2012 at 2:26 amBakanekokun

      I take it the novel is in Japanese…which I can’t read.

      • June 12, 2012 at 6:19 amYanDaMan

        The novel’s been translated ages ago and you can read it online.

  • June 12, 2012 at 2:24 amBakanekokun

    I knew this was gonna happen, I knew it, I knew it…and I dread reading it. But in the end, I felt avoiding it would diminished Rider’s last epic stand. Now on to watching it again.

  • June 12, 2012 at 4:07 amK

    So… next one up, Kiritsugu vs Kirei?

    Hit us with a Kaijuran version of Emiya – time alter – pretty plox!

  • June 12, 2012 at 7:36 amD-LaN

    I’ll be leaving this here to lighten up the mood (or vice versa)–>http://images.wikia.com/typemoon/images/1/1e/Sensha2012.png

  • June 12, 2012 at 8:51 pmCroco

    At least Rider made it to the semi-final

  • June 14, 2012 at 3:11 amAnonymous

    I think Rider’s going to be okay.

  • June 14, 2012 at 9:14 pmcoto

    Waver was annoying. I was hoping he was the one who died and not Rider.

    • June 14, 2012 at 9:23 pmDa5id

      But that wouldn’t make any sense. Rider’s whole point besides being a grail contestant is developing Waver’s personality.

  • June 15, 2012 at 10:29 amLaughingMan

    Manly tears were shed, and they continue to be shed until the end of time…