「人質はヴァルヴレイヴ」 (Hitojichi wa Varuvureivu)
“The Valvrave is the Hostage”
Let me say this upfront – Kakumeiki Valvrave is a show that demands a complete shut off of your left brain, and you might have to look elsewhere if a good sense of logic is what you’re seeking. Similar to Code Geass, Sunrise’s latest mecha effort is quickly carving out its own spot as a anime that is truly fascinating for its unapologetic eccentricity. In fact, one of the many things I love about this series is how it has no qualms to go totally bizarre, and when it does, there’s no compulsion to explain everything right away. It was made apparent from day one that this is a show that defy all conformities of a conventional mecha series and the latest episode is certainly no exception!
There’s a clear message that everyone is important in the show and all of the characters deserve a chance in the spotlight. After L-elf’s central role in the story last week – one where he showed how badass he truly is, it’s Shouko’s turn to shine and indeed, there’s more to her character than meets the eyes. In a mere four episodes, Shouko has blossomed into a complex and endearing figure – she is sensitive, loyal and thoughtful, but in no way less formidable than any of the male leads. It’s hard for me to overstate just how charming she is, and she was certainly bursting with irresistible charisma in this episode – not only did she rallied the students to stand up for themselves, Shouko also managed to put up a good negotiation and kept the oppressing forces from both sides at bay. The connection that she shares with Haruto is tender and amiable, but there’s also a distinct edge of something more beyond that. Shouko’s always the first one to stick up for him most determinedly, and while it was pure happenstance that she rescued our lead from ARUS’ captivity this week, the fact that Haruto feels most at ease when she’s present is an attestation of their strong mutual trust that’s not just superficial. There’s no doubt the on-screen chemistry between Haruto and Shouko is genuine, but if Okouchi sensei’s previous work is any indication, I wouldn’t be too quick to write off Saki as a potential love interest and there’s bound to be waves of drama and commotion before all the dust is finally settled.
While Shouko was the clear stand out of this episode, it’s undeniable that L-elf’s presence also shone through whenever he made an appearance. To call him a wild card would be an understatement and he has presented so many competing agendas that I wonder if it’s even worthwhile to take anything he said at his words. He is absolutely convinced Haruto will form a contract with him – calling it a prophecy, and to his credit, it did seem like everything was going well until Shouko’s interference thwarted his plan. The sudden declaration of independence for Sakimori Academy was clearly not part of L-elf’s calculation, but if the slight smirk that emerged from his face is any clue, he’s probably unfazed by the recent development and I have a certain suspicion he’ll eventually get his own way. Then there’s a question of where does Haruto and the mysterious Valvrave fit into the picture? The revelation that JIOR’s humanoid weapon might be a sentient entity – one that has no hesitation in taking another’s life – is another interesting twist that I wasn’t expecting. For now, it seemed like Haruto is the only person capable of piloting the Valvrave and for all his amicable appearance, the sheer might of the mecha combined with his newfound body-switching abilities makes Haruto, at the very least, a force to be reckoned with – and no question, that’s something I never thought I’d be associating with him back at episode one!
- I’m very pleased to see Shouko rubbing the “peace sign” in L-elf’s face. Then again, he doesn’t even know what the “V sign” means.
- Don’t piss off the hot babe on that screen, “Your Mistake” indeed!
- “Shouko for President”! Politics is clearly in her blood.
- I don’t believe you Shouko, don’t stop stripping!
- Dude, you shouldn’t be playing with guns!
- “Call me Moses”. That one had me laughing out loud!
- Saki’s ship was making substantial headway last week, but I’m willing to bet Shouko has regained some lost grounds after this episode.
- Next week, we’ll be presenting idol performances starring Rukino Saki. Just how awesome can this show get! Hey, Hey, Hey, Start:Dash!
tl;dr: @SeishunRC – #Valvrave 04: I have no doubt Shouko would make a great “waifu”. The Valvrave might be a sentient entity? #Anime