「わたしは“人間”だからっ」 (Watashi wa “Ningen” Dakaratsu)
“I Am Human”

Whips and chains have little power next to powerful ideals honestly spoken. With the soul of a nation on the line, one young girl stands up and speaks…

Meido Ane – The Martyr, the Hero, the Saint

I know even as I type this that I will not do this episode justice. Perhaps it’s because I have a weakness for stirring oratory well delivered, but this was the best episode of Maoyuu so far, by a wide margin. No other offering has been this tightly focused since episode 1, and none have been this powerful. There were, what, six scenes overall? Pushing the B-plots forward was largely ignored in favour of making the principal scene big, powerful, and inspiring. The animation budget wasn’t high, but that’s fine – talking doesn’t require a great deal of movement. More importantly, the episode’s direction was great, the imagery was visceral and painful, they gave the main scene plenty of time to breathe and flex, and most of all, Tomatsu Haruka acted with every bit of her considerable skill. I haven’t seen a seiyuu sell a scene with such power since Taketatsu Ayana pulled out all the stops on a certain confession last season (say what you will about the series as a whole – she sold that scene hard). Okay, that’s enough about the trappings. Let’s get to the ideas that were thrust forth.

The single most brilliant thing that Meido Ane did was tell the truth. Say what you will about politicians, but truly powerful oratory cannot come from lies – the speaker must believe with every ounce of their being that which they espouse. By mixing her own story with that of the Kurenai no Gakushi, Meido Ane made the Gakushi a rags to riches story. No longer was she some untouchable, intrinsically better noble, but just someone like everyone else. The pain, the doubt, the uncertainties that clouded her heart up to that very moment – she poured them all forth in a way that touched every single person there. The best leaders are often “one of the people”, or at least the most beloved ones, and in one fell swoop she made the Gakushi exactly that.

But the part that really got to me, the part that sent chills down my weary spine and electricity shooting through my battered brain, was the climax, her principal point, the punctuation mark of her speech. She spoke of insects – oh, how Meido Chou would have been proud! We’ve all seen it before – when the chips are down, people, organizations, even entire countries abandon everything they purport to believe in in order to save their own lives (sometimes, too often). But remember the old Benjamin Franklin quote: “He who gives up freedom for safety deserves neither.”

Yes! I say yes again, and twice more! To quote another wise man, Jon Stewart (Hey, Franklin was a funny guy too!): “If you don’t stick to your values when they’re being tested, they’re not values: they’re hobbies.” I understand the primal desire to save one’s self, to take the past of least resistance, to do the best one can in this scary world we live in – and I reject it!! Easy to say from my comfortable chair, I admit, but true even so. Meido Ane was right – those that give up their freedom, those that compromise their morals when the chips are down, are no longer human. They may walk around on two legs and use tools and whatnot, but it does not matter – they are insects in every way that counts.

The Church, of course, stood to benefit (in their own twisted way) no matter what happened. Either they got to dispose of the dangerous Kurenai no Gakushi and the “demon potato”, or they get an excuse to subjugate the Winter Country under the guise of sheltering a heretic. Yuusha’s plan would have been better in that they would have followed the Church’s orders without endangering Meido Ane more than necessary, but what of the potato? And more correctly, what of the Winter Country’s pride?

This, I think, is where Meido Ane truly saved the day. Rather than allowing the country that has treated her so kindly to lose its soul, she stood up for her dignity as a human being. She stood up, and everyone else stood up with her. I believe I speak for everyone when I say this – Shisha (Futamata Issei)? Go fuck yourself! You can slap people in chains and you can try to kill them, but you can’t make them do what they don’t want to do, not if they don’t let you. There is always a choice, always a choice, even if all the alternatives are bad. Even if it turns the whole Church against them, you cannot make them do what they don’t feel is right. Not anymore.

Looking Ahead – Thoughts in the Void

To be honest, I’m not sure who the shimmering lady at the end was. The Light Spirit? Maou? The Light Spirit working through Maou? Past demon lords and their experiences with all these other heroes? I have no idea, and I’m still too floored by Meido Ane’s awesome performance to give it ample thought. Same with blue boy. Screw it – I’m going to go watch the episode again, while hoping that next week is anything as good. That’ll be damn hard to do, but I can hope.

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – A stirring speech from the illusion-clad Meido Ane gives us the best ep of #Maoyuu so far. Remember: he who gives up freedom for safety…

Random thoughts:

  • Kizoku Shitei sure has come up in the world. What, you need to buy time, and your only skills are dancing and spreading rumours? THAT’LL DO JUST FINE!
  • Pro tip for the Church next time they plan to get all dickish: never let the condemned speak. Shit like this happens. That should probably be in the Evil Overlord List, if it isn’t already.
  • They rise up, up, up
  • Full-length images: 04, 06, 08, 09, 10, 11, 18, 22, 25, 30, 43.




  1. Definitely the best episode so far. But you gotta remember, Meido’s speech shakes the entire infrastructure. It’s telling people that slaves, or “serfs” are not slaves but humans like the rest and pheasants can pursue for high status of being like becoming nobles and such. This is like abolishing slavery or the french revolution style of impact speech, which of course the current top of the food chain (i.e. the church) doesn’t want.

    1. Very true. What seems good and proper to us is as unexpected as an alien invasion to them – far more so, in fact, because they’ve never even considered that their aliens could be a thing.

    2. Basically, Meido Ane threw down the entire feudal order in a single speech amounting close to the in-story “We, the people…”
      I was expecting that things eventually go down the road, given people that find themselves more in control of their lives (food surpluses, demon invasion threat gone), they tend to throw down the shackles of oppressive overlords. What I was NOT expecting was the trigger for the entire avalanche would be Meido Ane. A shy, troubled former serf girl who was always unsure of own worth.

      “Who of all the Wise could have foreseen it? Or, if they are wise, why should they expect to know it, until the hour has struck?”
      I think that Shisha was almost as dumbstruck as Ceausescu in 1989 when he got up to preside over supposed support rally for the communist party and ended up fleeing the presidential palace before the angry people.

      Furhermore, it is notable that the winter nation rebellion doesn’t involve only peasants, but has support of the monarch and local church (Onna Kishi). I think that the Central Church will find the nation as hard nut to crack as it was in real history with Protestant England and Scandinavia.

      What is more worrisome, is that the entire schism might go against the very idea of Maou’s seeking of peace, and result in her unwittingly becoming saint on a standards of another religious war!

      1. Yes, with the Thread of “Demons” we will move to a “War of Religion”. But here, and at that Timeline (Real World), it is more a Question, how hold the “Power”

    3. I must admit, i am very moved from this Episode. Good Text Script. But you must also known, she could only “move” the Hearts of so many, because she has the “Wisdom” of Speech”. So, Knowledge is the Key. Well in this case Reading and Writing and “understanding” what you read. Not just “Copy & Paste” with empty heart

    4. Got to hand it to Stilts, he used a lot of good reference such as Benjamin Franklin and Jon Stewart. As Drzero7 said, this is a good speech that you won’ ever see in your typical “Hero Slaying the Demon King” story. If I were the hero, I would kill myself out of principle knowing more and more how the Church, run by the worst possible humans, was easily manipulating me to do something as stupid and killing the demon King to gain “peace.”

  2. And this is why Tomatsu Haruka is my favourite seiyuu, I was waiting for this speech and it was even better than I anticipated. I got goosebumps during it when she got to the part that was obviously Meido-Chou’s impact on her. Can’t thank all involved with Mao Yuu enough for this glorious episode.

    Typo on Taketatsu Ayana’s last name up there^

    1. Aside from strength of character, another reason was mentioned during the time they discussed education. At that time, Maid Ane didn’t even know there was a better life than what she had.

    2. Why didn’t she snap? She did. She and her sister ran away and took desperate shelter in a noble’s stable on the off chance they would be the one noble who wouldn’t send them back to their masters.

      But if you mean why didn’t she violently snap (other’n the fact that she’s female, and therefore doesn’t have all that angry testosterone that us silly males have), it’s as Asta said…she didn’t know she had anything like the power (or the worth) to fight back. Now she does.

  3. I was surprised that no one (Knight, Hero, Old Dude) stepped in and just stood there watching her get her ass whipped. It pissed me off no end.

    The writer of the manga must have researched the Christian faith, the Middle Ages, and the Inquisition when creating this series.

    1. well the whole plan was to “kidnap (read: rescue)” her. ofc, I’m not saying the whipping was justified, and the King wanted to intervene, but they’re giving up a lot to stop something that should have probably have been anticipated (to an extent). some sacrifices have to be made at times if there’s no better alternative. and Meido Ane found one

      1. I know what you’re saying, but I’ve always hated that. “Some sacrifices have to be made.” That’s like someone saying they’re willing to “walk on the dark side” in order to do “what needs to be done.” Do the ends justify the means? That’s been a discussion across human history, and what that’s not liable to end anytime soon.

        But for my part? No, not usually. If you win the wrong way, that’s just another way to lose.

      2. The initial intention was to free her once the church had taken her away. That way she was outside the Winter Country’s jurisdiction, and no blame could be placed on them. Though they wanted to help her, it seemed the wiser and safer path to not directly oppose the church or the central nations. She would still be saved, and the Winter Country would not be facing a war on two fronts.

        Yet Meido Ane could not make herself take that path: not and still be who and what she had chosen to be. Perhaps it was not sensible of her; she may have just condemned thousands to die in a new war that otherwise might not have happened; but she could not [i]not[/i] do it. And when the king and the others heard her words, they could not go forward with their original plan either. She opened their eyes to the shame of giving up their freedom, their lives, their humanity for the sake of an illusion of safety, and they simply could not stand idle any more.

        …Dammit, I can’t even talk about this without starting to preach. This scene really gets to me.

  4. As I said last week, if they could pull this scene off well here, it would be the single most epic scene in the anime to date. I stand by that. A single, powerless girl turned the spirit of an entire country against those who wanted to enslave it for their own corrupt purposes.

    It is amusing in a way: her words in that moment when posing as Crimson schlar may end up having a greater impact and doing more for the legend of Crimson scholar than anything the true bearer of that title has ever done. Not to diminish the value of Maou’s own actions, but she’s going to find herself unexpectedly having a lot to live up to when she returns.

    To be honest, I’m not sure who the shimmering lady at the end was. The Light Spirit? Maou? The Light Spirit working through Maou? Past demon lords and their experiences with all these other heroes? I have no idea, and I’m still too floored by Meido Ane’s awesome performance to give it ample thought. Same with blue boy. Screw it – I’m going to go watch the episode again, while hoping that next week is anything as good. That’ll be damn hard to do, but I can hope.

    Of this I have no knowledge. The manga that I have read has shown nothing of either the blue man having visions or the glowing woman, at least not yet. It may well be novel material, but the novels remain largely untranslated. Presumably this is information of some importance, but at the very least I doubt anyone who is dependent on translated material will be able to spoil this for you, because the information just isn’t there.

    1. Maou did a lot of great thing as the Kurenai no Gakushi, and made her the beloved figure that people wanted to stand beside, even if it meant defying the Church. By Meido Ane? She made the Gakushi a legend

    2. I don’t think this is a spoiler, since I’m not giving any details, but if you’re reading the main manga, you should be able to guess who the blue guy was.
      Show Spoiler ▼

  5. She is an amazing actress and plays all kinds of roles. Hard to believe she also is Lala Deviluke (To Love Ru), YunYun (Caanan), Nagi (Kannagi), Gruier Serenity (Moretsu Pirates), Byakuroku (Otome Youkia Zakaro), and Asuna (Sword Art Online) just to name a few.

    1. And Ichika of Ano Natsu de Matteru!

      In fact, I think Tomatoes was one of the first seiyuu I “noticed”, back when Kannagi came out and I was just starting to recognize seiyuu thanks to RandomC/Div’s corrupt influence (thanks boss!). Actually, I take that back…I think she was one of the first “new” ones, though I caught onto previous greats like Kugumiya Rie or Noto Mamiko before then.

      Sorry, had to reminisce a bit there ^^

      1. also Rouge in Basquash, haha i can’t believe i started noticing her from that show. didn’t get into to love til recently, but she’s definitely got an amazing range!

    2. Hard to believe she also is Lala Deviluke (To Love Ru), YunYun (Caanan), Nagi (Kannagi), Gruier Serenity (Moretsu Pirates), Byakuroku (Otome Youkia Zakaro), and Asuna (Sword Art Online) just to name a few.

      I think that is just another example of how talented Haruka Tomatsu is. Difficult enough to master a certain type of character, but to be able to portray a wide variety as well is on a different level IMO. Not only that, she has a considerable amount (like 25 or so) song performance credits as well. That is one SERIOUSLY talented seiyuu!

      Stating the obvious, but she really gave an outstanding and memorable performance. Visually, the scene was intense, but I think her voice acting had just as much, or perhaps even more impact on the viewer. A++

  6. This really gave me some heavy goosebumps and I even had a couple of tears running down my face at the start of it, god damn Haruka, why u so gud?

    Haven’t felt like this after a anime episode in a long while.

    Is it next friday yet?..

  7. I couldn’t have said it any better myself Stilts, this episode was indeed absolutely amazing. In the beginning of her speech when she was talking about her family I was on the verge of tears. And its hilarious to see that someone else couldn’t really give the end with the blue guy a second thought because of the speech that had just ended. I had to back it up like three times until I was focused on what the shimmering lady was saying.

    1. Yeah, it could have been important or something (probably is), but I’ll only start to care at like wednesday or thursday of next week. Right now, my mind is still filled with Meido Ane’s words.

  8. I personally think that whole scene at the end with the blue dude and the red glowing girl is hinting the original anime end? (Ya know, random final boss, random final char for random conclusion.)

    1. Dunno, i dont know the Manga line. But perhaps the Anime Line will “skip” the “Church against Heretics” plot and take the “I am taking over the World! vs Queen of Hearts!”

      Queen? Did this Blue Guy dont saw the Face of the Maido? So, she will be an Important Person aside the “Hero and Demon Queen”

  9. Brings me back to thinking of the Crusades and other corrupt/blind religion-based actions (that are still done today even). The corrupt in positions of power thinking that just because they say it’s in the name of their god and religion that that makes everything they do okay and nobody has any right to question it lest they be ostracized as “heretics” (thus usually making anything they would say be called into doubt, if just not believed at all) and/or just killed.

    It also further shows how, as “weak” as the common man may be, when they join together, they can easily overtake the corrupt few in power, and their lies/excuses, causing them to flee (as we see here) or concede (hardly likely most of the time).

    1. The corrupt few in power are certainly a problem, but let us not forget the guard that almost did the dirty work of cutting Meido Ane down. It reminds me of a Terry Pratchett quote:

      “There are hardly any excesses of the most crazed psychopath that cannot easily be duplicated by a normal kindly family man who just comes in to work every day and has a job to do.” – Terry Pratchett, Small Gods

      If Nuremberg taught us anything, it’s that “just following orders” isn’t justification enough. Eventually that’ll be true in their world as well.

    1. Actually, the Reformation was interior to the Church, so that’s not really the reference here. This is much more like that Older Sister Maid just started the Thirty Years’ War. Which is going to get ugly, but it eventually lead to the Peace of Westphalia.

      So, still a very solid read (by the series) of the Middle Ages, but a different one than most grab easily. Though Westphalia doesn’t make sense outside of the Reformation.

      1. Am I the only one who immediately thought “What about Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon?” when the Peace of Westphalia was brought up? >_< I'm broken forever!! ...and I love it 😀

  10. A very powerfull episode and speech indeed though I did cringe at the way the old man supported meido ane. I mean ”dude she had just got her back whipped like no crazy torturer could have and you just have to put your freaking hand on her back yeesh dude have some respect.”

  11. I can’t even begin to state my awe from watching this episode. Just…. phenomenal.
    Haruka Tomatsu does it again.

    But that ending scene. Now I’m worried a little…

  12. After reading the Manga(after everyone was complaining about dragon preincess’s character design) I was looking forward to this episode the most and I was blown away. The wipping was just so much harder to process becuase I was seeing it happening, and seeing it all together was so inspiring.

    1. @RogueSpirt: after everyone was complaining about dragon preincess’s character design LOL – I hope people don’t think that’s the only reason why myself and other’s recommend the manga. >_<. While I do prefer the manga designs, personally, the primary reason I recommend it is for additional information/perspective on the characters and story. At any rate, I hope you enjoyed reading it.

      Back more on topic, I was a little surprised just how graphic this scene was in the anime. Of course visually manga is much more limited than anime, but I still got the impression that the director kicked things up a notch. In addition to what Meido Ane suffered, there wasn't a big pile of rocks (and the rocks 2-3 times as large as drawn in the manga). The way it's show in the anime, it's kind of inferred that the the Central (?) church had planned for "the scholar" to be stoned (big rock pile and MUCH bigger rocks to throw) whereas in the manga, that part felt more spur of the moment. Both very good scenes, just a different impression for me.

      1. D*** IT!! Sorry everyone, for the utterly craptacular, typo-filled post, but accidentally hit “submit” rather than “preview” (which I had yet to even do once post redraft :<).

  13. Best episode so far. I didn’t expect them to start whipping her. Damn, that’s brutal.

    Having read the manga, I waited for this moment and it certainly is like what I thought. It evokes feelings that’s in all of us. Nicely done.

  14. It reminds to one of the final escenes of “V for Vendetta”: “What lies behinds this mask is an ideal and ideals are bullet proof!”. That´s one of the most simple truths in the universe.

    1. I wouldn’t go that far. Ideas (and their glossier, fancier cousins, ideals) are very powerful, but they can be tarnished. Lies and deceit and obfuscation can cloud the reality of thething until they’re as harmless as a pin prick. You need a clear communicator and a strong message to bring out the true latent power of only some idea(l)s.

      Fortunately, Meido Ane had all of that, and in spades.

      1. “Ideals and religions separate us, dreams and disasters unite us”

        I don´t remember the name of the person who said this but it´s a sad truth about human nature, so you´re right Stilts, ideals need a proper conduct to reach a person´s heart, but that´s the scary part because if you don´t use it well ideals could easily cause major disasters.

  15. That blue guy at the end….anime only? I haven’t seen anything about him in the manga, and it’s past this point by quite a bit…so….maybe an anime original ending…which I pray not. D: I want more!

  16. Just pointing out how everyone was saying this was such a weak season of anime. About every episode of everything I’m watching has been remarkably on point this week whether it be emotional like Sasami and Maoyu, hilarious like Mikami-ke, or down right amazing like Tempest.

    1. I wouldn’t bark up that tree if I were you, lol. Such things are all a matter of opinion. Personally, I seem to find 15-20 shows a season that I enjoy, and while I won’t always call them all masterpieces, I enjoy them, and that’s what really matters, ne? So there are very few bad seasons for me.

      Now, people with more, ahem, discerning tastes (if I am to be charitable about it – I don’t think this is a good thing) will say things different. However, I can at least say that there have been good stories in every season, if you’re willing to look for them.

  17. And finally, Meido Ane has the answer for her question ‘Am I a human now?’. It was truly touching when she had all those flashbacks. And she really drove the point home with her speech. If you can’t think for yourself and just blindly following orders, you are not human, you are just insects. Epic speeches are epic.

    More importantly, the episode’s direction was great, the imagery was visceral and painful, they gave the main scene plenty of time to breathe and flex, and most of all, Haruka Tomatsu acted with every bit of her considerable skill.

    And I absolutely agree with this. Everything in that speech was just so perfect that it actually gave me chills when I was watching.

  18. There was a big hint about the last scene in the credits if you actually can read Japanese. Since I’ve never read the source material I can’t actually spoil anything, but just in case someone really cares I’m still using the spoiler tag.
    Show Spoiler ▼

  19. @ Stilts

    I have no idea who the shimmering lady but i do know who who she is.

    What i say next is a spoiler from what i know from the prequel novels and the Maoyuu Maou Yuusha Gaiden manga.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    As for that Blue guy….
    Show Spoiler ▼

    If anyone has any question about the series, i’ll try my best to answer them.

  20. Agreed, Meido Ane’s speech was moving and beautiful (and oh so much more powerful animated). This episode reiterates the exact reason I fell in love with this series: a “fantasy setting” that’s not as fanciful as one may think, brimming with philosophy that illuminates different facets of human nature. While I was not a humanities/philosophy major of any sort in college (biochemistry major in fact), I feel like I could write pages of analytical essays on Maoyuu. Hmm…I might just do that at the end of this season…

  21. This was Tomatsu’s best performance to date. And to think Koshimizu would take over once she took on Maou’s body, but no, they decided to let Tomatsu do the epic speech, and it turned out well.

    “No one is to stone anyone, even if, and I want to make it absolutely clear, even if they do say Jehovah!” (Promptly gets stoned by the public)

  22. If I were the Winter King, I would have just taken a leaf out of Leonidas, dug a hole in the square and shouted “THIS. IS. WINTER COUNTRY!” before kicking those papal envoys into it, considering he’s basically declaring war against the Papal authorities anyway.

    1. As satisfying as that would have been, civilized people don’t shoot the messenger. You keep a pretense of honor going long enough to reach the big fish, and then rip his heart out like an Aztec priest >:D

  23. This episode totally went ballistic with the emotions.

    Yes I was utterly enraged by the idiocy of the church. Yes I was enraged by the speech of that megalomaniac Messenger. Yes I was enraged by the fact that humans go to such lengths just to reach their goals.

    But the redeeming feature of this episode was ersatz Demon Queen and her speech. Its been a long time since I hear such a speech. Weaving her personal story into it was the icing on the cake. As humans, though we “pride ourselves as logical creatures”, we’re still bounded and dictated by emotions and hearing the speech made me shed manly tears.

    What came next certainly complimented the icing. Stoning the Messenger and his lackeys… I broke into a wild applause and cheers. The last time I did that was in Lord of the Rings. When the keeper of the tower got smacked down by one of the heroes. The entire cinema broke into a thunderous applause and cheer


  24. *panting* O…okay, I finally c-caught up with the series! And aside from the love triangle (which is pointless) and short supply of amazing scenes like this, this show has been pretty good.

    Though I have to question why they’re bringing in the Blue Men Group and the Light Spirity thingy this late in the game with only 3 episodes left. This is starting to end up like the usual gecko endings that anime adaptations are plagued with, and I really hope it does not end up that way with this show.

  25. Man, this episode strike the very core of how the world is operating now. It would be better if the rock hit that messenger’s face. Totally retelling how the world works back in the past.
    The light spirit just give a feeling of God/Jesus. And it also tell how people manipulate the teachings(?) of Religions and how stupid people(pardon my phrasing) are to believe them.

    1. Operating NOW?! How about been operating for thousands of years?

      Considering all the stylistic and thematic similarities to Spice and Wolf in this show, that pretty much goes without saying.

      1. His/her handle does give you a clue, I suppose…:p Different tastes? Maoyuu isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and from time to time we get people who don’t like to drop an intelligent response to things they don’t like but still watch.

  26. Meido Ane took a page of “Revolutions 101” and made a speech that could’ve made William Wallace proud. A cry of freedom that will be listened in all the human world (and I belive also in the demon-human Gate City) The Church has made a terrible mistake in making the Winter Nation an enemy. Whith whom the rest of the human nations will ally? The country that recovered a territory from the demons or a bunch of old and decrepit men that only thinks of their own greedy and sinful beings? We’ll see a copypasta of Benedict/Ratzinger’s quitting here?
    Haruka Tomatsu steals the show this week, making the rest of the cast look like amateurs newbies

    1. Well, in the “Middle Ages” in Europa there was Dark Times for the Church. They used the “Power” for Sin. And they know that, but sticked with it because of “Power”.

  27. merchant had meet someone about something to plan while blue hero & company going with plan with having big sis go all in on it.

    so old message guy appear demand red scholar so she appear (big sis on ring mask) cue the “pain” attack on “red sis” during which she mention left she went through from being a serf to losing most of her family til day when found the SAVE.

    during it all good times & learning which show make her realize I AM HUMAN person speech give she still stand on it cue the people siding with her & stone’d the old message guy away.

    even more showing winter king & female knight also side with “red sis” all in cue old message guy get the BOOT & all done a blue person wonder about her.

    oh hero congrats big sis (yea she deserve a oscar award trophy for it) while something going on showing hero & many others.

  28. “They rise up, up, up…”
    …and then plunge deep down like the bloody dead fools they are. Hehehehe!!!

    Just kidding, they’ll plan something, if they want to survive the wrath of the Central Church. The payment for preserving and defending freedom can be really high and nasty, to the point of being a source of “Pyrrhic victory” (this is not the case, though).

    I wonder what outcome the author pulled in the novel (if the anime will adapt untill the point).

  29. Props to the Older Sister, because she stood up and changed a nation that day. This girl who struggled with her doubts and her past rose up and just refused to be silenced.

    The consequences should be serious, but this was the right thing to do. They can’t stop war or save the world if they are not willing to stand up for their beliefs. At a certain point you have to grab onto your humanity and stand strong. For anyone it would have been easier to just suck up the pain and wait to be rescued, but she didn’t do that. There was a good reason that she was left in Maou’s place here.

    Just by far the best episode and it was all about that one scene. I don’t even care that almost nothing else happened, because this was done so damn well. It was a beautiful speech even as I was sweating wondering what was going to be the end result. Great speeches either have people rising up or leads to someone becoming a martyr.

    God, there are just not enough words to say how good this episode was.

  30. Great review as always, Stilts! Just a note: the transcription of the title of this episode should be: Watashi wa ‘ningen’ dakara. The ‘tsu’ at the end is not read when it’s small 😀

  31. Great episode. I’m very impressed!
    I really wnat to see what’s going to happen next.
    And once again the Winter King is awesome.

    Oh and I can’t help but think of the new blue dudes as Demon Smurfs.

  32. Superb. Simply superb.

    I was never a big fan of long drawn out speeches. But Meido-Ane’s speech had me riveted on the edge of my seat. It is just inspirational. And the episode was panned out really well. I cringed when they began flogging her (how I wish that Shisha was the one on the receiving end instead). But the fire and determination of Meido-Ane’s eyes…. words are not enough to describe just how awesome she was in this episode.

    PS: Really must give credit to Tomatsu Haruka as well. I’ve been a big fan of her for some time now. But she really does take things to a whole new level in this episode.

  33. Stilts, I have to disagree with you on one point.

    ” but what of the potato? And more correctly, what of the Winter Country’s pride?”

    It isn’t just about the potato, and it certainly isn’t about pride. The hardest part of making real change to the system, to reach the other side of the hill, is getting people the people to change. Improved crops, medical care and most importantly education are only means to an end: making people aware and actively work towards a better future. Just as it’s easy to obey, it’s easier to hate and not try to understand the other side, and this goes for both the rich/poor division as well as the human/demon division.

    Neither the Demon Lord nor the Hero will be around to give every single major advancement in technology or economic power; To make a permanent improvement, the people need to be able to make those steps forward on their own. Losing the potato would only be a temporary loss at best, but the chance to take a huge leap forward in changing the people? Who would pass up the opportunity?

    It’s a matter of getting priorities straight, and Meido-Ane created the best possible outcome. Hell, she could inherit the title of Crimson Scholar and just let Demon Lord work on things from the shadows. The “identity” of Crimson Scholar is now split between them after all. As a bonus, Meido-Ane is a symbol of that struggle to change, and her being able to do so on her own is integral to reaching the other side of the hill.

    1. Two things:

      1) The loss of the potato wouldn’t have been a minor setback by any means. All the progress they made stripped away, so many lives lost, the Southern Countries shoved back and beholden to the Central Countries once again…these are all major events, major consequences. In the grand scheme of things maybe they would be overcome in time, but if the arc of history truly bends towards justice, then this is true of everything.

      2) The reason I spoke of pride (and at much greater length than the potato) was because of the reasons you pointed out (broadly…I approached them from a different angle, but not radically so). The paradigm shift was neither in saving the potato or saving the Kurenai no Gakushi, but in taking a stand for their dignity as human beings – all of their dignities, even those of the serfs! – in the face of the Church’s bullying. Yes, that will propel history forward more than anything else if it isn’t stamped out. But more important in my eyes is the rightness of it. Human beings have dignity, have pride, as long as you stand up for it. That’s what Meido Ane did, and everyone else did as well, becoming more than insects. They became humans.

      That it will likely work out better for pushing the world forward is just a fortuitous outcome of doing what was right, imo.

      1. Then that’s a difference of outlook. I can’t wholeheartedly agree with “rightness”, though I can’t say cynical practicality is any better. I just feel that in the same way that Hero was originally stuck thinking that killing the Demon Lord was “right”, it’s easy to get lost chasing that “rightness”. In contrast, pushing the world forward not only gets you perspective, but other people who are competent enough and actually care enough to debate and argue with you on what exactly is “right”.

        For most of the characters, I think they follow your side, but I think Hero’s reactions show that he’s on the fence on the whole thing. It’s a little early to conclude exactly which kind of theme Maoyuu follows.

  34. Hah, this all reminds me of an old mythological story I once read – where the conclusio and the moral of the story was basically that nothing has more power than the human tongue – whether it’s used for evil (the crap that asshole messenger spouted) or to bring about positive change to the world (Meido Ane’s words and speech). Mere words changed the stance of an entire nation, and it was very convincing at that. Screw your friendship speeches, this is how you do it! Hell, I can’t remember the last time I’ve seen something like this pulled off so well.

    Tomatsu Haruka really nailed this scene as well. Dare I say the first nomination for best seiyuu performance of the year is in?

    1. Well, the Tongue is not all. The “Body” is Important, too. Imagine this have said a “Serf”. Nobody would listen to her. But this said the honor “Teacher”. As you see, even here the “Appearance” is Important, too. Not only on “Contract Meetings”

      The Illusion gave her the “Power/Impression” here, dont forget that. a Word from a “Scum” is lower then a Word from a “Noble”. Thats how the World move around, in every time-line

      So, for first. The Illusion Ring, give Her that Power… But She should go and build up her own Reputation. I bet this will Happen..

      And, when the Original “Teacher” is back. Someone should tell her everything, or it goes up in Smoke

      1. If Maido Ane learn about more, how She walk in the World and move something in the World, from them. I bet, she will be a good “Leader”. Wisdom dont come from alone to you. You must earn it. Grab it, learn it, love it, understand it. Thats how True Wisdom works. If you just speak a foreign Language Words, without knowing there meaning. Then it is only a “Soulless” Wisdom

        Maido Ane, has Dignity from the Town Peoples. That is a beginning… As i said, nothing comes for free to you. You must make the “First Steps” and Hold it dear

  35. Love the speech by Maid Ane. What makes it more amazing is how the ‘insect’, after receiving hope in response to her desire to be human, makes it this far to inspire other ‘insects’ to start remembering that they were human in the first place. She really has come a long way, even if to us it’s only a little more than half a dozen episodes.

    As for the Church…Well, that’s what happens when too much power stays in one place and no one comes to challenge or reform it from the inside or outside. Tipping point.

    Looking forward to how they will animate Show Spoiler ▼


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