「人か 神か/」 (Hito ka kami ka)
“Human or God”
The plot finally starts to gain momentum.
This week, Luck and Logic makes larger strides towards establishing a bigger narrative in the guise of a fun, relaxing get-together—before things really start to go crazy.
The relationship between Tsurugi and Athena is the clear character focus this week, and rightfully so. From the very first episode, it seemed that the series aimed to put this dynamic at center stage—I thought very much that the show would concern itself with their development as logicalist and covenanter.
Surprisingly, it’s been put on hold. Now, however, after weeks of working on other characters, the two finally get the spotlight—to unfortunately lackluster results. The conflict at interest here is a lack of trust between both parties, and is one jarringly thrust upon the viewer. Up until this point, in the episode and in the series, we got very little sense of the relationship between Tsurugi and Athena. In fact, the only interactions we did see between the two insinuated a strong emotional connection—one which implied a deep level of trust.
The show should have attempted to organically weave an underlying degree of mistrust between the two, despite however strong their bond might be. This would have made this week’s episode feel more justified and deserved, instead of arbitrary and random.
Furthermore, the events through which the show attempted to convey this conflict was underwhelming at best. The catalyst for the problems of their relationship was nothing more than mutual overreaction. When Athena interacts briefly with Lucifer, Tsurugi happens to stroll by, and immediately reacts with intense defensiveness—channeled in anger towards Athena, for merely conversing with the threat. Now, it’s justified that Tsurugi was worried for her safety—even greatly so—but not for it be channeled in the kind of knee-jerk anger that it was. He should have been far more willing to understand her situation and history with Lucifer. The series though (as previously mentioned) should have built more up to this. Tsurugi’s response felt more jarring and out of place to the viewer than sympathetic yet excessive. Instead of feeling the tension of their relationship erupt into a mic of conflicted emotions, I just sort of raised an eyebrow.
Athena’s subsequent response also seemed a little off. Though she was concerned that Tsurugi did not firmly place his trust in her, I was unable to follow her reasoning. This is not to say that within the show, she was wrong to worry—merely that the series did not spend enough (or any) screen time dropping hints and clues at any underlying conflict between the two. As a result, it seemed as if she was making a mountain out a mole hill when it should have felt like a justified concern that the viewers shared.
Though the arc wasn’t executed as well as I’d have liked, the overall message got across well enough. I’m happy that their relationship was addressed in some form or capacity before matters got too out of hand. I do feel that I’m a little more in tune with their dynamic, which now appears in more need of improvement than previously seen—but one which the two are making an effort to amend.
Despite this, though, I’m happy to see Lucifer (who I’m assuming is the big baddie, given that he shares his name with the freakin’ devil) get more attention this week. The conversation his appearance sparked between Athena and Yurine sheds some light on the lore in similar, clever fashion as episode one did. Any time more is taken to flesh out the history and motivations of these characters, my ears perk up. It’s interesting to hear that Athena is not only tied in some way with the antagonist, but maybe even partially responsible (since she hints that their conflict necessitated visitation from the goddesses). I’m very happy with this development, as it subtly lays the groundwork for undoubtedly epic battles to come in the following weeks.
Overall, not the strongest installment of Luck and Logic, but a fun one nonetheless. Though the conflict between Tsuguri and Athena could have been structured far better, it was was at least enjoyable to watch the entire main cast up at base let their guards down and decompress with Tsurugi’s family. The interactions amongst all of them were lively and pleasant—a nice break away from the week to week action. A necessity too, for if this week’s concluding events are anything to go off of, some serious bizness is about to go down.
Also, that was like, one of the weirdest and most out of place eating scenes I’ve ever seen.