「しばし天の祝福より遠ざかり」 (Shibashi Ten no Shukufuku Yori Tooza Kari)
“Absent Thee From Felicity A While”

To say the least, there are not enough fingers on my hands and not enough toes on my feet to count the amount of times this series has surprised me in some shape or form. Time after time, it’s the same thing. I keep thinking I’ve finally grasped the answer to a question… just to be given a big flat “CONGRATULATIONS, YOU’VE FAILED AGAIN” over and over again. Really, there’s just no guessing where this series is going to go—and that’s not even the best part. No. The best part is the fact that not a single development or twist is forced and every single explanation makes sense within the confines of the established world—a perfect demonstration of story telling mastery few series are capable of doing.

This week… well, this week it’s just more of the same, really (and then some). First off, we get the revelation that Hakaze was born as the Tree of Genesis sensed its own revival—chosen as humanity’s representative and the one who determine when the Tree of Genesis’ revival will occur. As Hakaze states herself, “the Tree of Genesis is (thus) not such a cruel deity to cause civilization’s doom.” One would reason that this makes the Tree of Genesis the obvious choice in terms of which of the trees to support, but nope, not at all. Because in the end, there’s also the possibility the Tree of Genesis is merely making it look like the Tree of Zetsuen gave birth to the mage and the latter isn’t at fault at all.

But wait! There’s also the potential that it was indeed the Tree of Zetsuen’s work. But hmmm, what about the Tree of Genesis’ uncanny ability to influence logic to a point where it could merely shoot over an offering to Hakaze when she finds herself unable to find Samon’s? Wouldn’t that go back to pointing to the Tree of Genesis as the culprit behind Aika’s murder? Not to mention, what about the sudden attack on Yoshino and Mahiro? Were they really tossed out just because they served their purpose of bringing back Hakaze? Why isn’t Samon killed then? Which side is correct!?

The answer? We just don’t know. And this is exactly what I’m talking about. It’s just impossible to know with this show, but every development isn’t farfetched or nonsensical either. Sure, the Tree of Genesis is the one wrecking havoc at the moment, but what’s to say it’s not merely responding to the Tree of Zetsuen’s revival and trying to ensure its own survival?

Either way though, at least Hakaze’s back (what a grand return it was!) and we get a battle of immense proportions on top of everything too. At this point, I’m seriously wondering if both trees would lead to civilization’s destruction, and the point of everything is to take this chance to incapacitate both trees. But then again, I haven’t been right often with this series, so what can I say? We got Junichiro running around in the background too, Aika magically appearing in a voice over at the end… and it’s just like, wow. Just one of those series where you just gotta sit back and enjoy the ride it seems, and if this episode demonstrated anything, the best’s yet to come. And if the world doesn’t end tomorrow (the timing of this episode really seems quite appropriate doesn’t it?), we’ll be continuin’ coverin here on RC through Zetsuen’s second cour. Yup, you heard that right. Zetsuen’s going to be a 24 episode series and a new OP by Kylee will debut starting with the next episode. Sadly however, there will be a two week hiatus before the series resumes though, which is a darn shame.

In any case, just one last thing before I go (last but not least!). I’d just like to express my gratitude to Guardian Enzo for helpin’ out on Zetsuen last week, as well as BakaMochi, who returns as the capper for this episode. Thanks guys! 😀

Full-length images: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 14, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 23, 25, 28, 29, 33, 34, 35, 37, 39.




    1. This series has exceeded the sleeper series of the season, it is actually probably THE series of the season, overshadowing such hits like Jormungand, Psycho-pass, or Robotics;Notes – each an exemplary series in its own right, but this one borders on masterpiece. I havent felt that way since… Madoka Magica? And now were set for a next dozen episodes of awesomess!

  1. Last time I guessed the Aika was the Tree of Genesis… now I’m sliding that over to assume she is the Tree of Exodus’s mage. I could be totally wrong as this show has certainly thrown out every conceivable answer, but her voice over at the end and the contents of what she says… too much coincidence. It’s hitsuzen instead.

  2. I’m glad how they portrayed those scenes where Yoshino and Mahiro were both struck by the destruction of the trees, and the music definitely made feel the mood as the power those trees exhibited ravaged the area.

  3. I have no clue where this is going next, and I love it. Though, this is certainly the first time I’ve ever seen two trees battling it out in such a serious context. Anime. I did not expect Yoshino and Mahiro to be taken out in one fell swoop either, though they’re obviously not going to die (I think). I’m left mostly speechless once again.

  4. If I know anything, it’s that when two trees throw down, you do not want to get in the way.

    I can honestly say I’ve never seen anything in anime quite like that final sequence. With Beethoven’s ethereally beautiful “Tempest” sonata as a backdrop and Aika reading Miranda’s speech from the play, chaos and devastation rain down everywhere – including upon our two main characters. What a synergy – Beethoven, Shakespeare, and anime at it’s most imaginative and grandiose. If stuff like that doesn’t make you glad to be an anime fan I’m not sure what would – there’s certainly no other art form in the world that could have given us what we just witnessed. Maybe it’s rose-colored nostalgia but it feels as if this sort of soaring ambition was more common in anime once than it is now, where the focus has shifted so heavily towards a very narrow subset of interests and studios have become so much more risk-averse. I’ll give full credit to BONES – they may have had some swings and misses lately, but they’ve never shied away from taking chances.

    1. It really was an amazing closing sequence. I wish more anime were like this, and I don’t think you’re alone in thinking that anime has changed quite a lot, and not necessarily for the better. I may have been a young impressionable girl when I picked up anime seven years ago, but it feels so different now than it did back then. I love the risks Bones has taken with AO and Zetsuen this year, and it really seems to be paying off here. It’s nice not to be able to predict all the twists and turns, and to see genuinely shocking and awesome things happen on screen (all pulled off well artistically, I might add).

  5. I’ve noticed a lot of people missed the implications behind the Tree of Genesis “eating” all the metal people. Show Spoiler ▼

  6. Really good episode. Hakaze is the hot!

    I think the tree attacked our main heroes because Hakaze and Samon will now be using their power to save the two instead of stopping the trees. The Tree of Genesis doesn’t want to be put down, and probably want to finish off Exodus once and for all.

  7. I’m so glad that this show got a two season cour, because for me, Zetsuen no Tempest will start now. Zephyr, if you already like this show you cannot imagine what is comming.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    Well, now all we have to do is wait! If they keep the quality of this show like in season one, without a doubt Zetsuen no Tempest will be one of the best anime of 2013!

    1. I have no idea how they will fit the big reveal, which some of you already have guessed without reading the manga.

      24 episodes may cover that reveal, but would probably just end there while the manga kept going.

    2. Like @mistress_kisara said, we have over 40 chapters of Zetsuen, but in english just twenty. If i’m not wrong, this episode 12 cover the chapter 15 or 16. So, if they keep this passing, there won’t be any fillers at all, but I don’t discart the anime ending, since the manga is still running.

      Of course, they can also do one of those “unfinished endings” and do a season 3 in the future. Well, I hope for this!

  8. After watching this episode over and over again, something perked up during like my 7th rewatch.

    The part where Hakaze says that if the tree of Genesis is Aika’s killer then Mahiro can kill her with no resistance. What if the tree was attacking them at the end just to make sure that it’s tying up loose ends to get what it want?

  9. This by far is amazing and it is unlike anything that I have ever seen, it is different from Naruto, Bleach, Fairy Tail and One Piece and that is why I love this series. I avoided reading the Manga so that I can enjoy the series even better because it isn’t always we get to see too much action like the above four that I have mentioned, I like the drama, suspense, mood and all the Shakespearean themes that are included in the series. I also must mentioned that I was bored a few hours ago until I decided to watch this Anime and reach this episode and I never imagined that my boredom would just fade away. Can’t wait for next weeks episode and no I will not read the Manga to find out what happens next.

    K C M
    1. No, this is definitely not the typical shounen manga in the sense that the main character and the most powerful person is kept powerless and isolated. The princess doesn’t need to become “stronger” like Naruto, etc. But her power didn’t keep her from being betrayed. With all her might, she managed to recruit two not-so-reliable allies and was kept out of direct actions for almost an entire season. The fundamental premise of Zetsuen questions the reasonableness of letting the heroine win, which kind of overturns the logic of most shounen manga. It is almost as if the author doesn’t want the readers to cheer for the princess and undermines her legitimacy at every turn of the plot. This makes this series very special.

  10. Holy crap, I was expecting a climax of sorts this week, but this episode still left me watching it with my mouth open, trying to process it all. I mean, who are we supposed to root for here? Which tree is evil, or are they both? Were humans ever really in control here? How does every character truly play into this (including the ones that are seemingly dead)? I have no idea and I look forward to finding out. It’s rare when a show can really keep me guessing like that, and get me so emotionally pumped (it’s at the same level as, say, Madoka in that regard). And as the preview indicates, new developments are afoot too. Curse you, two weeks hiatus! Oh well, at least we’re getting a second cour, this would be the most frustrating ending ever if that wasn’t the case.

    The trees duking it out with each other was suitably apocalyptic as well, heh.

    1. Having read up to the current events in the manga, and not watching the anime since ep.5 (saving it until I can watch in just one run), I can agree that a huge theme is about how powerless humans are.

      I think it is safe to say that also, there appears to be no real “bad guy” in this series so far.

  11. Definitely a series that will be a major contender in the ‘plot twist’ and ‘exceeded expectations’ categories of next years ‘Best of Anime’. And if the story continues to engage the reader as its done, then who knows how far it will go. Can’t wait until this resumes in two weeks.

  12. This episode just exemplifies the reason why i watch anime, who would have thought that seeing two giant trees fight violently would be this exciting, yet Zetsuen somehow managed to do it.

    That is only a small part of way this episode was impressive, the fact they expanded the three-way mind-games between Yoshino, Mahiro and Samon into the grander scheme of things and now we aren’t even sure if the Tree of Genesis is pulling strings from behind the curtains and manipulating things for its favor, or are these mere coincidences, or is it the Tree of Exodus which wants things to seem that way so that the followers of the Tree of Genesis turn against it (like Samon did), or is it a bit of both .. and how come Hakaze isn’t aware of the revival of the Tree of Genesis if she was supposed to be the one to resurrect it, and why would the Tree of Genesis cruelly attempt to kill Yoshino and Mahiro, did consider them dangerous to its existence or did it just deem them unnecessary (i.e fulfilled their task and were no longer needed, could that have been the fate of Aki), or was the whole “killing” thing just an accident due to the two trees fighting (highly unlikely due to the precision and timing of the attacks but still a possibility).

    And finally the gem of this episode was the Aki narration near the end of the episode while Hakaze was transporting herself and Yoshino to the ritual site .. that where did that voice come from .. was it just Yoshino hallucinating or was it real, and if it is real .. doesn’t it paint Aki as the villain here (or rather overly unsympathetic).

    Besides, why some people still think that the Tree of Genesis was turning people into metal, it was very clear that the fruits of the Tree of Exodus were responsible for that metal transformation .. the magic of the tree of Genesis shouldn’t include anything like turning people into metal (it’s just unnatural and against the logic of the world, that’s something the Tree of Exodus would do).. devouring them after they turned into statues of metal is a whole different story as it fits well with the established rules of the Tree of Genesis magic and what it is capable of (absorbing any metal objects that are products of civilization .. although the way they were made was unnatural they still count and are quite similar to the talisman Yoshino and Mahiro used).

    Phew .. so many questions and mysteries .. this show doesn’t fail to impress really, keep the twists and surprises coming (hopefully after the 2 weeks hiatus we will get some answers).

  13. While the story is getting bigger and bigger, and the events are taking everyone’s attention as the series rises to a masterpiece level …
    I’ll go outside and look up at the night sky, maybe I will see a falling star so that I can wish to find a girl like Hakaze in this real world.

  14. WHOA. It actually took me a few seconds to register what was happening after Yoshino got sliced! And then after Mahrio got stabbed, I had to pause the video because I couldn’t stop repeatedly shouting “WHAT?!” while it was happening ^^;; This show has managed to “turn the situation on its head” more times than I thought possible! I love not knowing what to expect next. It definitely makes things exciting. It’s going to be a brutal two weeks of waiting for new episodes that’s for sure. I love having Hakaze around in person now and I look forward to that in future episodes. Can’t wait!

      1. Ok, a loop then. Because here is how skeleton will end up:

        1. Hakase is on the island, died, and becomes the skeleton
        2. bad guy finds skeleton
        3. bad guy shows skeleton off to everyone
        4. bad guy gets screwed and skeleton exchanges places with Hakase before she died
        5. Loop to no.2

        So how do you call this? “Endless recursion of time?” Skeleton will never go beyond the point where it ended up exchanging with Hakase and will loop back on the island, then be found by the bad guy again, then go back again, looping forever.

        Oh and BTW, this isn’t an argument, I’m asking how do you call this?

        The Moondoggie
      2. haha, Moondoggie, I think you havent really understood that part;) even though time-travelling usually leads to contradictions, they avoided this nicely. Btw, its not about “exchange” – meaning: no loop whatsoever.

  15. Sudden attack wasn’t for revenge or something like that. Tree of Genesis doesn’t make something without a good reason. So I think ToG predicted some dangerous actions from Yoshino and Mahiro and tried to remove them from the stage.


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