OP: 「Hello! My World!!」by fhána
「Hero & Beast」
As an avid fan of Monster Hunter, my fancies were tickled. The Behemoth, in addition to Ernesti’s exploits, exemplify a lonesome warrior taking down a mighty adversary far beyond compare. More specifically, I reminisced about subjugation quests of the Lao Shan Lung and the Akantor in Freedom Unite. Let’s just say both were giant creatures, with one being a destroyer of fortresses, and the other having a truly explosive breath. As you can see, there’s quite the overlap. For this reason, I will be focusing on the two aspects of the hunter and the hunted, when reviewing the details of this week’s episode.
Toll the bells! We have a crisis on our hands, as the Behemoth slowly lumbers towards the capital city, bringing along widespread destruction and doom. When your best hope can barely scratch this nightmare and gets obliterated in a single step, squished like bugs, you know things are looking grim. What would your reaction be if this 500 ton apocalyptic creature stared you down? I’d imagine it would be pretty difficult to muster up any semblance of courage. But let’s take a moment to appreciate the monster design. From reading the novels, it didn’t inspire much fear in my mind. Seeing the beast in all its majesty really was something else though. Another thing from reading the novels, I was actually quite angry at Dietrich for abandoning his comrades to the mercy of the Behemoth. However, the anime did a really fantastic job of putting his fright into perspective. I can’t even begin to imagine the constant vigilance required, because these things literally kill you in one blow. People may be asking questions as to why these grown ups got wiped out, while these young whippersnappers like Edgar, Helvi and Dietrich lasted so long. As someone with knowledge of the source material, allow me to answer that the Behemoth was simply toying with them, hence why they lasted for longer.
Bucking the convention where a protagonist finds themselves reluctantly placed within a mecha, our boy Ernesti eagerly pilots one of his own will, going as far as stealing the mecha from poor Dietrich in order to do so. Against an Animalistic Abomination no less. If that’s not insanity, I don’t know what is. It could easily be said that the circumstances dictated an element of necessity, given that Dietrich deserted his fellow comrades. Also, it may seem like a complete copout that Ernesti reprograms and significantly improves the mecha functionalities beyond contemporary standards on the spot. Do bear in mind that after his reincarnation, this guy has spent almost every waking moment learning the magic and the code behind it, in preparation for the day he could finally pilot a mecha. Here we can see the incredible payoff where Ernesti stands toe to toe with the Behemoth, something no one else could do. And what struck me most was his complete lack of fear, instead giddily giggling in childlike joy as if completely confident in his own capabilities, despite never having tested them out. But even that’s not enough. It takes a provocation of Ernesti’s mecha loving spirit, and taking advantage of the sword planted into the Behemoth’s eye to overcome such adversity. A turtle counts as water type, so it makes perfect sense that some improvisation with electric circuitry would be super-effective. And we get Fried Turtle on the menu for dinner. Too bad they didn’t cut off the tail, so they shouldn’t be expecting to get any carves off of that.
Ernesti’s passion for mecha shines through, and in a turn of events surprisingly uninspired by the power of friendship, Laihalla pulls through the crisis thanks to his timely intervention. However, the monarchy seems to feel unsettled, and we come to a junction regarding politic, where Ernesti will be eliminated if his talents pose a threat to the king’s power. Fortunately, I’m certain the king can only come to one kind of conclusion from meeting with Ernesti. The kid has a severe case of mechanophilia, and poses no threat to the crown.
ED2: 「ユー＆アイ」by You & I