「行方不明の王様たち」 (Yukuefumei no Ou-sama Tachi)
“The Missing King”
Alright, I know what you’re here for. Go on. Just go ahead. Enjoy the screen caps of Liliana acting hysterically tsun, deliciously dere, and just being incredibly cute in general. This post ain’t gonna go anywhere while you ogle.
Back? Satisfied your HNNGGG quota? ‘Cause I know I did. If it hasn’t been made clear enough, this episode was mostly (okay fine, ALL) about romantic comedy shenanigans with the latest girl in Godou’s harem and heroine of the Perseus arc, Liliana. Now I know what you’re gonna say: “Asobi, is she not just another one of them stock tsunderes?” And yea, for sure, I’ll agree with you on that judgement. Campione!’s characters are decidedly simple caricatures of the romcom genre. But you know what? Damned if she doesn’t make for an entertaining character on screen with that overly serious airheadedness of her’s. We’ve seen it before when Erica blackmailed her into defecting from Voban, but this episode really plays up the dreamy and naive aspects of her personality to some truly hilarious results. One moment, we’ll see her prostrating before Godou for her supposed insubordination, ticking off an increasing severe list of punishments for her to be subject to, (“Harakiri!?”) and the next thing you know she gets hysterically wrapped up in her overactive imagination. Then there are the delusions – oh boy, those delusions – of her and Godou in various genre parodies, ranging from a trashy shoujo to an old-school romance flick. There’s even the whole “childhood friend waking the protagonist” romcom cliché! And what’s possibly even funnier than those fantasies were her high-strung reactions to them. “Egads!” You know, watching this, my mind randomly wondered: Does Liliana solely read and write romance novels, or is she actually playing dating sims on the side? Because these sure don’t seem like your typical Twilight fantasies. (And you know that wish-fulfillment fiction she wrote? Still a better love story than Twilight. Yep, sorry, couldn’t resist the jab.)
Add in trolltastic maid Karen to the mix and we get some incredibly funny scenes of her playing off Liliana’s gullibility to manipulate the naïve young knight. I guess Karen can’t help herself, and it’s not hard to see why; Liliana does make for incredibly easy pickings considering how easily she loses it, and the parts where she did – when Godou found out about her little secret and when she broke down sobbing – were easily the funniest parts of the episode for me. (Oh man, my heart. Liliana looked so vulnerable when she broke down. Godou should’ve given her a good hug.) I’m going to be a little biased here and say that these romcom shenanigans were a good deal more entertaining than the ones in Mariya’s episode, even though both were similarly blatant in their pandering.
Plot-related tidbits are few and far between the romcom hijinks of the episode. We’re again treated to a short scene with Pandora, but much like the very first time we saw her, she’s still a complete mystery that appears to Godou for unknown reasons when he dies. We’ve also yet to see any interference from the rest of the harem (A shame, really. I’m looking forward to seeing how Erica will normally interact Liliana. I expect a good amount of trolling.) thanks to Salvatore’s intervention, first by decreasing the technological level of the island they are on, and then by having them in bondage, which honestly felt to me like another badly masked excuse for the cast to deliver some fanservice. They’re mages, aren’t they? How are they not able to break free of the ropes?
More information is revealed about Perseus’s mythological connections by Athena, and it seems like Liliana has his alternate identity figured out. Yep, you should know what that means for the next episode: Knowledge transfers! In return for the information, Athena gets to be all touchy-feely with Liliana, and she also strikes a deal with Godou that (if my sources are being accurate) probably won’t see any expansion for the rest of the season. Despite the odd pacing and badly made cuts however, it seems that Campione! has remained a largely faithful adaptation up until now, and it’s likely the trend will continue to the show’s end. Unless the anime decides to make do with an original ending, it’s likely we won’t see anything else about this matter.
With Perseus issuing his challenge to Godou, the next episode should see the climax of this particular arc, and I can only hope the showdown between the two will display a better balance between the action sequences and mythological exposition.