「理想か 現実か/」 (Risō ka genjitsu ka)
“Dream or Reality”
Luck and Logic wisely decides to develop its characters before diving into a larger plot, to mixed results.
This week, Luck and Logic relegated the bulk of screen time towards developing one of its central characters. Yurine Tamaki is a girl whose core philosophies concern the sanctity of life. We learn that from a very early age, she’s wanted nothing more than to prevent senseless death and help preserve lives everywhere. Throughout the episode, she struggles with potentially having to breach these principles in her obligations as a logicalist.
I do appreciate Luck and Logic’s attempt to further flesh out its main cast—especially its arguably least memorable member. Not to say that Yurine was an uninteresting character herself, just that she was overshadowed by more striking personalities, such as her peers Maxwell, Asuha, and even her convenanter (I still can’t get over some of these terms) Venus. Luck and Logic’s third episode does much to make Yurine a far more compelling character than in past weeks by elucidating some of her personal goals.
That being said, Yurine’s development was mired by an unfocused character arc. The episode started by establishing that one of Yurine’s intentions is to be the leader of her squad—one which apparently ties her to someone back home (wherever that may be). This certainly tied in well with her superiority complex last episode (what with the Logic hours or whatever), as well as her disappointment and frustration during its final scene. Exploring this quirk might have led to some deeper insight into why she is so insecure and what past incidents might have caused it.
However, the episode almost immediately diverges focus onto Yurine’s humanitarian concerns, and her unwillingness to take life. While this is an interesting development, it doesn’t logically follow last week’s episode nearly as well as her aspirations to be leader did (and the fixation on power and escape from dealing with personal issues it might’ve entailed). Instead of concentrating on this, the episode still gives attention to the conflict between Yurine and Tsurugi—which itself was predicated on Yurine’s desire to be leader. As a result, the episode’s third act doesn’t resolve with a substantial level of satisfaction, since it deals with an issue that hasn’t been as well-built in preceding weeks.
Despite that, though, I do feel closer to Yurine as a character. We’ve now been exposed to a deeper part of her personality, and her struggles with addressing it in a business where killing is part of the job. Would I have liked it if this aspect of her was at least mentioned in previous episodes? Yes (if it actually was, then it should have been made more prominent to lay the groundwork for episode three).
However, I’m still glad that this show made some solid attempt at fleshing out one of its leading characters. I’m hoping that going forward, Luck and Logic will spend the same amount of time providing the personal motivations, past demons, and deeper character personalities of its other main characters before thrusting the show into a grander narrative. It seems that the end of this episode will perhaps provide some deeper character insight into Athena, and why Tsurugi’s compassion inspires her so intensely.
Also—quick note—was it also a little weird for others that the Chief suited up, like, out of nowhere? Shouldn’t her on-screen action debut be saved for something where the stakes were a tad bit higher? Yurine’s role in the climactic battle could have been far more valuable if the chief was back at base, barking the same orders. I’m getting the feeling that it’s something to do with pushing sales for some sort of…merchandise.