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Rewrite – 10

「ただ、友として」 (Tada, Tomotoshite)
“Simply, As Friends”

In the visual novel, Kotori was the kind of character to whom bad things happened because the universe hates her. To say that she is unfortunate—of the Unfortunate Childhood Friend archetype—is only the half of it. In Rewrite, Kotori is the designated victim. Amidst the war between Gaia and Guardian and the clash of their high ideals, Kotori represents all the little people who get screwed. Sure, she may look like a holder of influential neutral ground, closely connected to the Key, but she’s here mostly by circumstance. And really, all she’s really doing is sitting, and waiting, while the organisations close in around her. She is a victim, waiting to be attacked.

And so when Kotarou brings the midgets into her super secret Fortress of Solitude for no reason, allowing her to be betrayed from the inside for no reason, because they had telecommunications equipment for no reason, I was outraged at the script on her behalf, but also understood that this was par for the course of her life. I was more surprised that she came out of that really well, with Sakuya defecting so quickly, and Kotarou and Kotori trusting him so quickly in return. Things working out for Kotori? Inconceivable! Instead of stuff happening to Kotori, stuff is instead happening around her, skirting her territory but either managing to miss their mark or be momentarily deflected by friends on the outside. It’s strange. I thought Rewrite was building up to this huge-scale conflict between Guardian and Gaia, but instead it has deflated, with everyone sitting around waiting for the Occult Club to all be in the same place again.

I’ve stopped holding my breath for any big developments, since there’s just been a general lack of tension recently. Again, our protagonist, Kotarou, is still kept out of the loop as the plot happens around him, and so he whiles away the time with an impromptu training arc. Now, the training arc is a staple of shounen-battle-stories everywhere, but they’ve always felt like time sinks to me. This is especially true in this case, where I don’t really know why Kotarou would ask Sakuya for training out of the blue. Really, the best he’s seen from Sakuya is that he can block swords with his arm. Is that the trick Kotarou wants to learn? I don’t think one gets to do something so patently ridiculous via training. Otherwise, the only thing we and Kotarou really know about Sakuya is that he doesn’t like Kotarou, but even that is dropped in a hurry as Sakuya becomes awfully pliant. Yesterday’s sworn enemy, today’s strict mentor. There’s just no conflict anywhere to be found any more. Not even the quest for breasts stands.

Well, I guess the Guardian action girls are on hand to bring us a fight, at the very least. Fire! Explosions! It’s good that something exciting happened before the episode was over. But does anyone truly believe that Lucia is dead? Main characters are immune to fall damage—that’s a physical law inherent in the genre. Lucia has smote the Balrog, and fell into the abyss beyond light and knowledge. I’m sure she’ll be sent back in time as Lucia the White or something. I think that Rewrite is simply trying to contrive a way for her to join the rest of the cast, or at least get her out of the way while the re-grouping happens. We already know that Akane is sending Chihaya away; how long until the Super Friends assemble? It does seem that Rewrite is not intending to do much of import until that happens. Oh well. Wake me up when we get there.

September 4, 2016 at 12:25 pm
15 comments »
  • September 4, 2016 at 1:45 pmEnan84

    But does anyone truly believe that Lucia is dead? Main characters are immune to fall damage—that’s a physical law inherent in the genre.

    I’m not sure, stupid Akane death flagged all of them.

    • September 4, 2016 at 9:23 pmPasserby

      I still don’t think we should sign off on her death certificate until we see the body.

      • September 4, 2016 at 9:34 pmKazakiri

        Not when someone has a handy healing ability eh?

    • September 5, 2016 at 12:16 amAnonymous

      I thought the same thing too. It’s either none of them die or all of them die.

  • September 4, 2016 at 3:14 pmArche

    I’ve been enjoying Rewrite these last few episodes

    In a horribly messy OVA sort of way

    • September 4, 2016 at 9:21 pmPasserby

      It is a bit, isn’t it? If it was just a promotion for Rewrite+, it’d be doing well, I guess.

  • September 4, 2016 at 6:20 pmCherry

    It’s organizations, not organisation.

    • September 4, 2016 at 9:20 pmPasserby

      No.

  • September 4, 2016 at 9:43 pmlegwkio

    The whole episode felt like a huge @sspull.

  • September 4, 2016 at 10:19 pmAnonymous

    I think you’re being a little too harsh on the script. “Kotarou is kept out of the loop while the plot happens around him” describes pretty much every heroine route. The heroine routes have always been about Kotarou’s interpersonal relationships over the main overarching plot, and what the anime is doing is giving us more insight into how each character feels about the situation and of each other. One of Rewrite’s biggest issues as a VN was how isolated each heroine routes were from each other due to separate writers, so it’s interesting to see how events play out when all of the actors are assembled rather than some.

    And is it really strange for Kotarou to ask for Sakuya’s help in training? The guy did demonstrate that he can knock his superpowered ass flat on the ground with no effort.

    • September 5, 2016 at 1:17 amPasserby

      I admit that I may have been a bit harsh, but I maintain that right now Kotarou’s a bit useless. Not that he is incompetent, just that he hasn’t really found a place in the plot yet. So he goes does his own training thing with Sakuya (which in turn is something of a watered down version of the Archer/Shirou relationship from FSN). I agree that it’s interesting to see all the routes assembled into one, but it could be tighter. Just something of a lack of development and a few too many loose parts, is all.

  • September 5, 2016 at 5:42 amSK

    The pacing for this episode felt off, even with the issues throughout the series. Lucia’s turnaround from following orders to helping Kotarou and co. seemed too abrupt. If she was going to follow orders, show a little more of her being torn between them and her friends. If she’s going to turn so quickly, then don’t bother with the 10 seconds of pretending that orders are top priority. Sakuya’s turn is more understandable if Akane implicitly sent him there to aid them, but it still felt like it happened too quickly.

    If I had to guess, I’d say that Sakuya training Kotarou (and crazy lava dude) is how they’re incorporating Chihaya’s route? There isn’t a whole lot of stuff relevant to the central plot from her route beyond Sakuya’s relationship with Kotarou. Seems like they’re mostly combining the Kotori and Akane routes, so they just tacked on some stuff from the others, which explains the Lucia and Shizuru episodes earlier.

    Not quite ready to buy that Lucia is dead, either.

  • September 5, 2016 at 6:48 amACD

    Changing sides from Lucia don’t seems too off, he is her only friend, more when she is a biological weapon,and unlike shizuru, she doesn’t interact with other guardians(anime wise).

  • September 5, 2016 at 8:52 amCroos

  • September 6, 2016 at 7:59 pmdark

    i feel a vibe of archer/shirou with sakuya training, he claim know all about the rewrite skill say that it can go out of control and so the sakuya vanishing at opening flash in my mind, berserk koutaro o.O
    Yeah lucia dead was a lame bait because shizuru came with her to the forest, so she will catch & heal her