「再会と別離」 (Saikai to Betsuri)
“Reunion and Farewell”
Holy cow so many things happened in this episode.
Continuing on from my excerpt, I don’t think we’ve ever had so many different topics tackled in a single episode. Besides three separate fights all coming to a close and losing three servants, we even had the story literally close out this mini battle arc as Jeanne and Sieg started to speed toward Shakespeare.
Before leaping into that though, let’s break down each fight of this week’s fights. Starting with the shortest since it never actually came to an official close, I was rather disappointed (at least at the time) with Jeanne and Atalanta’s fight. Both in the sense of what the fight was about as well as the animation style that the episode decided to use for it. Don’t get me wrong, I can get behind that sloppy and crazy kind of look when there’s an intense action scene going on. But when the show has shown us that it can pump out some pretty decent fighting scenes, the least it could do for a somewhat important character’s final fight is make it look pretty. Slight animation gripes aside, let’s talk about Atalanta’s mental break for a second here.
As I said earlier, I was a little disappointed that Atalanta couldn’t get past the fact that Jeanne had “abandoned” those forsaken children in Jack’s Noble Phantasm. Not only were those children whose lives had long passed, but I think anyone with any understanding of the real world can comprehend that it’s nearly impossible to save everyone (this is like, a super important point of the original Fate series with Emiya and Shirou!). However, after Atalanta was brought down by Achilles, I had this moment of inspiration that helped me get behind Atalanta’s train of thought. As a Heroic Spirit that’s been given another chance to exist in the present, who’s to say you can’t just chuck logic out of the window in order to try and attain your goals now that you’ve been given a second chance at life? With a literal opportunity of a lifetime, it’s not too difficult to see why someone as passionate as Atalanta would get so focused on her one single goal and somewhere along the line start focusing on the finer details instead of looking at the whole picture. That said, even with this epitome dawning upon me as I watched Atalanta disappear in Achilles’ arms, I’m still not sure if I truly accept the way she behaved throughout the past few episodes. Luckily, Achilles managed to be a true hero and snapped her out of it before she let that Noble Phantasm of hers completely engulf her “soul”. So if anything, if this was supposed to be a play at irony with teammates taking themselves out, I guess it could work.
Moving on from those two fights, let’s talk about Karna for a second. As someone who has been pretty one dimensional since we first met him, I was so impressed to see him reveal his true personality right at the end. As the Hero of Charity, I was strangely happy when I realized that he was just an honorable fighter who wanted to maintain a sense of pride as this wacky Greater Holy Grail War played out. Behooved to serve his Master because of obligation, but never forgetting those who providing for him in the past, I think I was downright disappointed to see such a standup guy leave the show.
God, there’s still so much more to talk about but let’s close things out before this post gets any longer. At this point, it looks like we’ve transitioned into the next arc where it looks like all hell is about to break loose. With each side low on servants and Shirou doing who knows what inside of the Greater Holy Grail, I can’t imagine things slowing down at all until the end. If there was one question I’d like answered though, didn’t Sieg end up using all of his Command Spells during his fight with Karna? I believe he had three at most and he ended up transforming into Siegfried twice as well as empowering his final attack with one right before Astolfo leapt in. Alas, I’m sure we’ll get an answer within the next few episodes. In any case, I’ll catch you guys then. See you next week!