「ホシの名はシンドバッド」 (Hoshi no na wa Shindobaddo)
“The Culprit’s Name is Sinbad”
The troubles of Balbadd seem so far away as we reach episode 19, as everyone busies themselves with training, preparing for the next set of events that may line their paths. Old characters sharpen their blades and hone their staffs as new and returning characters come to settle into the new arc, specifically those hailing from the Kou Empire. While the majority of the episode generated some pleasant chuckles, key points of development scattered themselves nicely throughout the episode, fleshing out the depth of the cast in an otherwise transitional arc.
Aladdin, as quite the enthusiastic learner, has shown himself fully ready to hone his magical abilities to their fullest potential. Apparently magic is not a skill easily acquired, requiring the synthesis of many “commands” directed at the rukh. Shooting a blast of heat is good, but reading minds and turning invisible is another thing entirely. Hopefully with the closure of this transition period we’ll get to see more action involving Aladdin, especially against Judal. Moving from a purely defensive character to a more balanced fighter should prove fruitful for more complex fight scenes in the future…assuming that A-1 can get their act together on the drawing and animation.
That same enthusiasm also applies for Alibaba and Morgiana as well, whose metal vessels should provide them with a new edge in their technique. The chemistry between these two will be interesting to see in possible team fights in the future, especially considering how Morgiana seems to have taken more than a liking towards Alibaba…heh heh heh. The two of them have striking similarities in how they treasure their past and, as a result, the items that carry that nostalgia. To take their past experiences literally into battle together…I can only imagine the possibilities of how beautiful that’ll end up looking like on screen.
But hey, let’s not forget about Sinbad! Woe is he to be so popular that it ends up being the downfall. While it doesn’t appear that Sinbad has done anything too explicit or steamy, he happens to get into some pretty risque misunderstandings more than the average joe. Such a track record sure doesn’t help him here, where even his own loyal generals have no faith in his testimony. Man, bringing together such a close group of comrades only to be abandoned in the face of possible stupidity…Sinbad has it rough. There is one person that has it rougher though–
Jafa Kougyouku Ren. To suddenly go from an amicably professional relationship to well…being in bed with him naked is quite the jump, even though her feelings for him are already warm. Ka Koubun, you should feel bad for both executing the plan and well…executing it terribly. He must care for the princess so much as to not go “all the way”, but now that Jafar has set his eyes, Ka Koubun’s plans should no longer be a problem. His shenanigans do set the characters from the Kou Empire in a good position though. Although the empire itself bears a shady reputation for its expansionism, the majority of individuals hailing from the empire have a good heart. The men of the Kou Empire look out for one another, Kougyouku is your typically embarrassed teen, Ka Koubun ultimately looks out for his princess (most of the time), and Hakuryuu is looking to destroy the empire. Wait…huh?
Thanks to Hakuryuu, it looks like the action and/or drama of Magi will be returning quickly. The Kou Empire is definitely a large enough country to have its own factions with different agendas, but man does Hakuryuu look to be in a league of his own. Is the Kou Empire too corrupted by the influence of the “organization” to be saved? What does Hakuryuu know that could possibly make him have such thoughts, especially as a prince? Most likely such thoughts will probably be linked to the scar he has, as well as perhaps the quiet voice within Alibaba that seeks to antagonize the visiting prince. So much for “studying” in Sindria: Hakuryuu and Sinbad have a plan much greater, much bigger than any arc we’ve seen thus far, meaning more political intrigue, probable drama within the Kou Royal Family, and of course more fight scenes as the worshippers of dark rukh cast their eyes towards what the prince considers a beautiful island country.