「牙を剥く優美な黒蛇」 (Kiba o Muku Yūbi na Kuro Hebi)
“A Graceful Black Adder Bears Its Fangs”
In keeping with the ACCA tradition, now that we, the audience, have mostly figured out the coup plot, Grossular spills it all without resistance to the rest of the council. I’m surprised how quickly the heads of ACCA took to the revelation that Grossular had been plotting treason, and how casually they jumped on board for the ride. I guess Shwan is just really that unpopular, huh? Still, this must be the most Grossular has ever spoken in the entire series, so if I was expecting at least one of his ACCA mates to suspect something was up. Maybe I’m just particularly twisted, but I find it hard to trust anyone being so… forthright.
Speaking of trusting people, how about Lotta? I mean, she’s supposed to be the purely innocent and uncomplicated character in ACCA, but this episode was a bit much, even for her. Some random you’ve talked to, like, once drags you into a dark alley and tells you to follow him, and that sounds like a great idea? Even with your discomfort with trains? Look, you can’t pull off the, ‘Come with me if you want to live,’ without robots from the future, and definitely not if your only reason is, ‘Er, a guy I know told me you were going to die.’. I guess Lotta is just genre savvy enough to know that everyone who likes sandwich bread in this show has to be a good person. It also helps that the uniform of emissaries of the princess is officially shady undertaker.
ACCA comments a lot about the nature of trust, and curiously enough, trust is almost always rewarded. Lotta gets to live this week because she trusts the good intentions of people trying to help her. Jean still trusts Nino. On the flip side, mistrust and paranoia is never shown as being very fruitful for anyone. In a story full of intrigue it’s curious that ACCA does not warn against trust, but rather simply reminds us that everybody has secrets. Often good intentions too, but buried underneath the secrets. For example, the chief was almost certainly lying when he said he was just meaning to ask Lotta to lunch and saved her out of pure serendipity. For one, that’s too much of a coincidence and, more importantly, Lotta was supposed to be at school, remember? Why was he even there? But he did save her. And we should accept the good intentions he has, even as they interplay with the miserable pile of secrets.
. Firstly, because that’s racist, and secondly, because even he may have all the best reason for his chicanery. And even though everything is suddenly much more sinister in this episode (an outright assassination attempt on a child!), I still don’t want to believe that anyone in ACCA are outright villains. I want to trust that they’re still good at heart.