「姫の元へ」 (Hime no Moto e)
“To The Princess’s Side”
I love it when a good plan comes together. For a while.
Free the Maids, Free the Princess, Stab the Villain, Save the Onii-chan
I probably should have realized it would all work out when Kuro whispered their plan, in a classic Unspoken Plan Guarantee (trope!), but I didn’t. Or I did, but only so far as they’d figure out some way to free Rin and Luvia, if only because last week’s preview spoiled that. Blasting the roof off the castle? Whipping out Rule Breaker? Sending Gil-kun to save Shirou? It’s honestly a testament to how far ahead Illya’s allies planned this thing, and how well it went. I don’t know, but it’s nice to see the protagonists’ plan work up to the point they planned it for once. Things so rarely go well for our heroes.
The Real Villain
Of course, I said “up to the point they planned it” on purpose. Once their cards were all dealt, they were in a good place—until it turns out that Darius isn’t who we thought it was. I was always expecting Issei or Shinji to be the real Darius, so in a way I’m disappointed . . . though in the rest of the ways, this is better. That would have been derivative, depending on nostalgia from Fate/stay night fans instead of standing on its own. This is better—and the reveal that Julian Ainsworth (Hanae Natsuki) is the very same Julian that Beako was perving out about? Hah! It makes sense why she was going along with the plan now. That maso is even happy when Julian is threatening to Aztec her to death. Whatta hentai.
What I most like is that the protagonists’ plan went well, so the villains up their game and fight back with even greater power. Rather than the soft hands they’ve been using against Illya and co up until now, Julian is not fucking around. I especially liked how the conservation of ninjutsu (trope!) didn’t seem to apply to all the muck heroic spirits, even though I expected it to. We’ll see if that remains true once a certain someone gets his chance at Julian, but for now, even the horde is posing a dangerous threat on an individual level. Awesome.
Trust Your Onii-chan
There’s some serious contrasting going on between Miyu/Shirou and Erica/Julian. The former are every bit the loving siblings, with the aniki willing to lay down his life for his imouto. Miyu’s trust in Shirou is deserved, I feel, and I’m pretty sure the next episode will prove that in spades (so excited!). Julian? Not so deserved. He interprets Miyu’s words in the worst possible way (though it might have been accurate), and then douses Erica in (I assume) the Greater Grail. That can’t end well.
If this is a battle between two pairs of siblings, I know which side I’d rather be on. I’m not entirely sure who will make it out alive.
Fate timeline/multiverse antics being how they are, there didn’t need to be a reason why the Archer card that came from the heroic spirit EMIYA appeared, when the Shirou of Illya’s world does not seem in the least bit likely to become that man. It could just appear because it appears, drawing from the EMIYA of any other timeline, including that of Unlimited Blade Works.
Instead, they gave us an Angelica who was worried about Kuro for what looks to be very good reason, and an Emiya Shirou that will definitely give rise to the hero EMIYA, if only he can kill Julian and survive. Next week we’ll see what Miyu’s onii-chan can do, and from what some of you commenters have been hinting at (please continue to not spoil, thanks!), I’m super hyped. I don’t think we’ve ever gotten to see a fully developed Shirou unleash his full power, save through the guise of Archer.
Now we will.
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Team Illya’s plan works, but it isn’t enough to stop Darius—I mean Julian. Now it’s EMIYA-oniichan’s turn #prisma_illya s4e10
- Pro work justifying the infiltration. Not only do we learn new information (they both have access to the same Gate of Babylon, or at least Gil has access to all of it), but it makes sense. That’s a neat (and difficult) truck.
- I wonder if Julian was impersonating his father just so Beako wouldn’t spend the whole time stalking him? Hmm . . .
My SECOND novel, Freelance Heroics, is available now! (Now in print!) (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: Radical transparency. I’ll try, Freelance Heroics in print, and other matters, Freelance Heroics is available NOW!, and I love sales jobs.
ED3: 「WHIMSICAL WAYWARD WISH」 by TECHNOBOYS PULCRAFT GREEN-FUND feat. Kouda Yumeha