「絶望に抗う賭け」 (Zetsubou ni Aragau Kake)
“A Wager That Defies Despair”
After what seems like a lot of determination and combined effort, Subaru and co. are finally able to take down the Whale by ultimately crushing it with the giant tree. This is not without a lot of work from the group though. They had to pull together all their combined strength to defeat not just one but three whales! Of course, it wasn’t really THREE whales but it still doesn’t mean that the effort goes unseen. The episode showcases everyone’s abilities to take down the White Whale and how Subaru manages to lead the charge. There’s a huge change in the way folks view Subaru compared to how poorly he was treated before. People actually look at him as an equal and with respect – especially Crusch. I see a bit of a ship there, but obviously one of more mutual respect for one another (bordering friendship?). I’m glad that this puts Subaru in people’s good side and he manages to redeem himself a bit from his earlier impressions (back in like episode 13; man that feels so long ago). For those that have been waiting for Subaru to really show off his good qualities and not get beaten to death repeatedly, this is it.
In my post last week, I said that I would’ve liked the episode a lot more if they actually showed the relationship between Wilhelm and his wife develop. The audience never actually gets to see anything more other than their brief introduction and several scenes of them fighting and acknowledging each other. I am blissed with a bit more of their history this week and we don’t just see them together, we see them kiss! Not once but twice! How adorable is that? I’m a sucker for romance and any piece of it in this series is much appreciated; since Subaru + Rem or Emilia is so far down the road. It’s not the most romantic scene in the world, but I think it shows a lot about Wilhelm’s character and also just how much he loves his wife from just wanting to take that burden away from her. He knows that she’s a far superior swordsman to him, but at least he makes his best attempt to prove that he’s worthy of protecting her. I love that and I love how Wilhelm is still out for revenge even years later (too bad Re: Zero never clearly shows HOW Thearesia dies). Wilhelm is ruthless when he rips the Whale open and comes out alive. It’s like he’s running on all this adrenaline and built up anger when he’s slashing the Whale over and over again. It made me feel bad for the Whale just a bit… a tiny bit, but not enough to outweigh the benefit of its death.
And if Wilhelm and Thearesia’s relationship didn’t get to you, then Rem and Subaru must have done the trick. I don’t think many of us would complain seeing more of Rem and Subaru – but mainly Rem. Her devotion to Subaru is off the charts and it’s just unbelievable how well they treat each other. They could seriously be more than friends and I wouldn’t know the difference; it’s a shame that that ship might never happen. I’m sad to see Rem actually depart along with most of the others, which leaves Subaru with only a handful of men from Crusch’s and Anastasia’s camp. She’s been a pleasure to watch and would’ve been an asset against the Witches’ Cult. It feels like forever since we’ve last seen the Witches’ Cult but I’m dying to get back to the main story of how Subaru will finally save Emilia’s life. That includes killing Betelgeuse finally (that crazy son-of-a-b*tch)! I hope no one dies in the process… and I was clearly very wrong about Ricardo and Wilhelm dying. I was completely fooled by last week’s episode! I could’ve been convinced that Wilhelm might still be alive but I thought Ricardo was definitely bitten in half or something with all the blood. That’s no indication if people will or will not die against Betelgeuse but I’m certain that Subaru won’t so this would result in a straightforward story until the finale.