「わたしたちをニンゲンにしてください」 (Watashitachiwo Ningen Nishitekudasai)
“Please Make Us Human”
Farming, education, the nature of serfs, and what warriors do when there’s no war – once again, Maoyuu Maou Yuusha tackles some thorny subjects in a compellingly cerebral manner…with a little more romance to boot, huzzah!
The Farming Village and Meido Chou – a Long-Term Plan
The very first thing that struck me was how long-term Maou is thinking. Not that this was unexpected, but it struck me nonetheless. Compared to the hyper-charged world we live in, the first step of her plan will take years to prove itself, with a ruse (the rumours of her and Yuusha’s “battle”) already being spread to cover it up for at least a year. Take this as a testament to Maou’s intelligence – a plan with a shorter time frame wouldn’t have worked, both because of the world they live in and because of the nature of the problems they face. Clever girl.
Agricultural Improvements…but First, Education!
So Maou’s plan is to help the farmer’s increase their own output. This is the classic “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime” proverb in action. If the humans can feed themselves – particularly those in the cold Southern Nations who can’t currently do so – then there will be less excuses to fight, particularly for those whose nations on the front lines.
Meido Ane & Meido Imouto – the Difference between Serfs and Humans, and Meido Chou’s Chance
The most fascinating part of the episode came about because of the two serf sisters, who would come to be known as Meido Ane (lit: Older Sister Maid, Tomatsu Haruka) and Meido Imouto (lit: Younger Sister Maid, Touyama Nao). First was the difference between serfs and slaves. Maou explains the difference, but Meido Chou doesn’t see them as any different from slaves, and in a very important way, she’s right. While they’re not technically bought and sold, the hallmark of a free human is choice, and a serf cannot choose what to do with their life. I think I agree with Meido Chou here – while each of us have our freedoms restricted in certain ways (ex: laws against murder, theft, and even speeding), most of these actually increase freedom in the end, namely by making us less worried about being shanked, stolen from, or plowed into on the way to work. Yet serfs have freedoms taken away that only lessen their total freedom, to no benefit to them. They might be better than shackles-and-chains slaves…but only barely.
Dere Maou and Dere Yuusha
Contrary to the lengthy, cerebral topics which have dominated this post so far, allow me a little fangirling – Maou and Yuusha are so cute together! Maou leading up to her lap pillow idea was simply adorable, but the real killer for me was how Yuusha didn’t hesitate for even a second before he took her up on her offer. Like with the fanservice, some people complained because Yuusha recoiled when Maou glomped him in the first episode, but to me this scene proved that he isn’t as beta as some took him for. Sure, they’re not bumping uglies yet – remember the time period they’re in; even husbands and wives usually didn’t sleep in the same bed then! – but there are definite signs that they’re getting there. Plus, there are even signs that Yuusha is going dere for Maou! I don’t know how they can keep their hands off each other, but I look forward to the moment they stop trying. Such a cute couple.
Yuusha’s Role – What Does the Warrior Do When They’re No More War?
I’ve prattled on for too long, so I’ll try to keep this brief. I must admit that I’m quite enamored with Yuusha’s character in general. While starting out fairly stereotypical (as he needed to be, to be the audience surrogate (trope!)), he quickly distinguished himself as a hero who can actually use his head. I’m not sure that he’s smart exactly, in that he’s someone with a lot of mental processing power who can work his way through complex problems and come up with innovative solutions – that’s more of Maou’s thing. That said, he’s at the very least perceptive, as well as wise enough to know what he doesn’t know, to recognize a good argument when he hears one, and to ask the questions that need asking. Today, that question was this: “when peace is achieved, what will I do?” I can feel the conflicted warrior in him, and I bet this uncertainty will rise as their plans progress. I look forward to it, to see what his answer is.
We end this week on a cliffhanger, with Maou opening up her box (no, not that one you perverts) to Yuusha’s surprise. What is it? Kininarimasu! (Note: don’t spoil it in the comments you goobers. I can wait.) That plus an appearance by a certain blonde woman should make the next one another fun episode. See you then!
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Agriculture, education, politics, & what it means to be human. #Maoyuu continues to make you think, + a little deredere romantic fun to boot
- Am I the only one that got some serious Everquest flashbacks from the porting scene? No? Just checking.
- The backgrounds really are more like paintings than actual backgrounds. I still like them. Mind you, they still do snap me out of immersion a bit, and that’s not an ideal thing, but thanks to my relatively new-found enjoyment of art that imitates the spirit of the thing without duplicating the reality of said thing, I end up enjoying them even so. Probably it isn’t the best move in a storytelling sense, but it works for me. It gives flavour to the series, gives it personality, almost like this is a story taking place inside a beautiful medieval tapestry…and there are far worse things than things like that.
- I mentioned earlier that there was no fanservice Vis-à-vis the maids, but even Maou got a serious downgrade in that area. She still wore outfits that showed off her ample cleavage, but there was a great deal less in the way of breast jiggling. That just goes to prove my point from last episode (made more in the comments than in the post proper) that the fanservice was there to serve the plot – namely, that Maou was trying to woo Yuusha at the time – rather than being there solely for titillation.
- Medio Imouto is going to get by just fine, isn’t she? Awwww *warm and fuzzies*