「弱虫の妹へ」 (Yowamushi no Imouto e)
“For My Weak Little Sister”
Sibling spats don’t usually end like THAT.
Fluffy Text, Dire Subtext
This season hasn’t entirely jettisoned the fluffy antics or the humorous moments, as I had feared. Those elements are an integral part of the Prisma Illya formula. Yet not all is the same, even when Tanaka-san is tromping around in her underwear or falling asleep in class. (She’s a treasure trove of idiot humor.)
The difference is tone. While the jokes are still there, the undercurrent isn’t light and happy like it was in the first episode, much less large swaths of the first three seasons; this is no longer a tale that, for large sections, is about friends having totally happy carefree fun. The text can still be jokey and fun, but the subtext is dire. The show can still be fun, but it’s never have that same joy it had until Miyu is rescued. Nor should it—and that damper on the happy-happy fun times will make it all the sweeter when Miyu is finally rescued from the Ainsworth’s clutches.
Prisma Illya is probably not at its best when it’s philosophizing. That’s more the traditional Fate stories’ schtick, though I think most would agree that even there they sometimes get lodged way too far up their own asses (see: several episode late in Unlimited Blade Works’ run). Here, I’m not sure I agree with Kuro. She seems to imply that Miyu’s small-s stoic refusal to express her emotions is a strength, whereas I see it as the kind of brittle strength that’s liable to shatter when it’s most needed. There’s nothing wrong with doubting, as long as doubting doesn’t stop you from doing what needs to be done. The one area she’s undoubtedly right, though, is that Illya needs to put herself in Miyu’s shoes, to empathize with her, and to realize what she’s had to go through. Then, she needs to go save her. Now.
Lancer, Rider, and Saber
I have to mention how awesome the fight animation was! For something that’s a sideshow in the grand scheme of things, and which other studios would have skimped on, Silver Link did nothing of the sort. That’s no surprise at this point, but it always deserves plaudits. Diligent work is so rarely rewarded as it should be.
It was also really cool to see three new Illya card forms: Lancer, Rider, and Saber Lily. And of course, at least one of them had to be showing an eyebrow-raising amount of skin, because of course it did. But the Rider costume was at least pretty much what Rider actually wore, and having her Saber version be more along the lines of Saber Lily? Cooool! Can’t wait to see her go Excalibur mode more often.
Sibling Spat to Sibling Spit Swap
Hells bells Prisma Illya, lewd much? I figured Kuro was just low on mana, but wrapping her legs around Illya? Leeeeeewd! There is a certain amusement in seeing Saber and Archer make out, only now it’s gay and incestuous. Anime!
Seriously though, lewd. And this shot didn’t work in the least. Mostly it was just freaky. The gay incestuous sister love confession at the end? That was sweet though, and would have been even without (or perhaps, in spite of) the making out right beforehand. Illya’s nakama, including her sister, really are her greatest strength.
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Sibling spat turns into sibling spit swap after the debut of three new Illya hero modes. Lewd! #prisma_illya s4e4
- At first I thought Bazett’s legs were shaking out of fear, but no. The desk is just too small. I feel you, Bazett.
- I have a feeling that Kuro’s trick with the curse was just that, a trick. Either it’s been gone for a while and she kept the tattoo as a symbol of her bond with Illya, or she used magic to hide the tattoo, not get rid of the curse. That’s supposition, though.
- I feel like if Illya can keep switching between combat styles like she did this episode, she could be one of the most powerful fighters around. It’s the same way that Archer/Kuro can be so dangerous because they can fight from melee or sniper-level range, and anything in between. That flexibility is a huge asset, and Illya doesn’t even have to use shallow imitations to do it.
- Author’s note: BIG NEWS! I released my second novel, Freelance Heroics, just the other day. If you haven’t read my first book, for which this new one is a sequel, I also released a slightly updated version of that, so check it out. (Ebook only for both right now—the print versions will be out in a week or so.) I know some of you hate it when I mention my fiction work, but don’t be hatin’. This is a big deal, and people like you are exactly the ones I want to read these things. Please check ’em out and tell me what you think.
My second novel, Freelance Heroics, is available now! (Also available: Firesign #1 Wage Slave Rebellion.) Sign up for my email list for a FREE prequel short story. At stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: Freelance Heroics is available NOW!, I love sales jobs, Good realism is character realism, and Dying idols.