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Overlord II – 03

OP Sequence

OP: 「GO CRY GO」by OxT

「集う、蜥蜴人」 (Tsudou, Rizaadoman)
“Lizard Men, Gathering”

While Overlord may be attracting its fair share of disappointment of late, I think the “worst” of it is now behind us. Sure Ainz remains a godly enigma floating around the edges and the Albedo baby rabies is nowhere in sight (for better or worse…mostly worse), but part of what makes Overlord fun was finally back on full display. Talkative development, roundhouse strategizing? Nothing a little head bashing and Palpatine Force lightning cannot patch over.

Arguably one of the reasons Overlord’s lizard arc splits opinions so hard is that its payoff is not immediately apparent. We spent over an episode on pure dialogue serving to build up a group of characters with no direct attachment to the familiar cast. It was a curveball out of left field, upending the familiar and causing most to simply question “why?” Well the reason was finally made clear. As the focus on Cocytus this week showed, the lizardmen and their fight exist to test Ainz’ most arthropodous of floor guardians. Fully fleshing out Zaryusu and revelling in the inner workings of tribal lizard politics? Designed to give depth to the mental wrangling Cocytus is going through. All will be made clear next week (hopefully), but those familiar with the first season—and the keen eyed here—likely remember Cocytus as being the warrior of the bunch. He’s relatively simple-minded, holding honour and loyalty up above all and seeing failure on his part or others as a direct affront to Ainz. Any order from best skeleton is to be obeyed with little questioning because Ainz is never wrong and changes to his words could bring defeat. Thus the purpose of this arc. Ainz’ hope is to ultimately instill some independence in his underling, to get him to question and never consider all commands as sacrosanct. Maybe the lizardman don’t all have to die, maybe they might better serve Ainz Ooal Gown in a different capacity—this is arguably what Ainz meant for Cocytus to consider after setting him up to lose.

While certainly debatable how needed last episode was in terms of this purpose, it’s hard denying all the focus on lizards worked in uniquely defining them. In the face of annihilation the tribes still banded together and presented a united front; they fought to win and organized themselves to that effect. When presented with a powerful enemy the lizardmen’s most skilled leaders faced him head on with no thought to surrender. Unlike many of the nameless enemies with singular purposes typically found in similar shows, here the lizardmen had a raison d’etre beyond simply stonewalling the protagonist(s). It may be a simple purpose overall (i.e. collective survival), but the intent of it sharply differed from Cocytus’ mission, who for all intents and purposes was the nameless baddie trying to ruin the good guys’ day. Ainz and company after all are supposed to be the evil ones of this story, they’re supposed to put the primal fear into all they come across. Without the lizardmen and their perspective to properly show Ainz Ooal Gown’s evil ways, such an aspect could have easily been lost amidst all the other comings and goings of Ainz and crew. The past couple of weeks may have been imperfect development deviating away from expectations, but they arguably did their job in showing what Overlord is really all about.

All that remains now is to show what happens when you upset the supposed plans of the world’s most powerful set of bones. Think those lizardman will get off easy now that Cocytus’ lesson has been taught? Think again you sweet summer child, the spooky scary skeleton isn’t that nice. The reptilian suffering fun and games hasn’t even started yet.

January 23, 2018 at 11:18 pm
33 comments »
  • January 23, 2018 at 11:46 pmJames

    I started thinking in terms of game why Ainz didn’t just go and wipe lizard men himself with one spell and i kinda get it now, he’s “leveling up” his army, as one would in a RPG, while also searching for possible allies, can’t “dominate” the world by yourself.

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:38 pmPancakes

      Pretty much, even with his ridiculous magic skills he cannot be everywhere at once to deal with every conceivable problem. One way or another Ainz’s floor guardians need to have the capability of dealing with problems he cannot (or does not want to) handle himself.

      • January 24, 2018 at 8:50 pmJames

        If you played mass effect (any of the games) or Dragon Age, you are the all powerful hero, but sometimes there are smaller things to deal with, like outpost getting attacked, or you need to attack an outpost, and you have an option to either do it yourself or send your squad to go do it, this is exactly that, Ainz is playing this as a singleplayer RPG

  • January 24, 2018 at 12:07 amtherealcomicman

    This season of Overlord is way better than the first one :) I’m glad they continued the story.

  • January 24, 2018 at 12:20 amDevastator001

    The battle at the end felt abit rushed, but overall still managed to get the major things in the battle done so all is good IMO.

    • January 24, 2018 at 3:08 amGinobi47

      That battle never really mattered anyway.
      All that matters in this episode was that Cocytus failed and would be forced to learn some lessons from papa bones

      • January 24, 2018 at 9:42 amFlameStrike

        Eh I don’t know about that. It’s all about execution and story telling. Sure the battle “didn’t matter” much in terms of overarching plot, but it sure was one heck of an entertaining read. In the LN I actually kind of liked how they structured it to make it seem like the Lizardmen were the heroes and Ainz co were the big bads. It put Ainz’s actions into a different perspective and reminded us that he’s NOT a conventional hero. It’s a important because Ainz’s previous actions can all be rationalized to be “good” in some way. He isn’t against committing genocide just to benefit Nazarick a little, or maybe he’s letting go of his old morals?

        For the battle itself, I felt it was a bit rushed. There were a lot of details that made the battle really exciting that they glossed over. The different tactics the Lizardmen employed for example, and Cocytus’s simplistic command style. But the anime has limited time, and how interesting the above points are largely depends on how invested people are in the Lizardmen and their conflict. So I suppose keeping it quick was a good choice for the anime. Still, one particular moment I liked in the LN was the detail they went into for Rororo’s last charge. The LN even went into Rororo’s head and gave us a mini flashback scene lol. Seeing the sheer love and trust Rororo had for his master, and just how much he was willing to endure because of that bond was pretty touching. I felt like that scene was a sucker punch to dog/pet owners.

        Well that’s that, for better or for worse, I think this arc will he wrapped up in one more episode.

  • January 24, 2018 at 1:01 amlehur

    I know it, it’s new anime “lizardman” it’s about hero lizard fought for their country.
    You’re title wrong it’s “Lizardman”

  • January 24, 2018 at 4:48 amRaidSoft

    I’m definitely enjoying the story and how the show is developed, it’s still painful having to wait each week for more to watch though :P In that sense it might feel like the show missed the mark, it feels like a show that probably works much better when watched in a marathon rather than week to week. The unfortunate result of how anime is generally produced and distributed in Japan, it feels more like they are looking at it from a big picture rather than having to make each weeks episode have to stand out on it’s own.

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:41 pmPancakes

      It’s true of so many series I find, a lot become so much more interesting when you can binge watch the next few episodes in an arc. Probably the reason I wound up loving Hunter x Hunter so much for example, I got to watch the majority of it after it already aired :P

      I wouldn’t be surprised if Overlord’s second season winds up similar, with this arc working a lot better when you can immediately find out what happens at the end without having to wait a week or two.

  • January 24, 2018 at 6:10 amAex

    Am I the only one that finds Entoma kinda cute? She has a very horror-movie “I’ll eat your soul and you’ll love me for it” feel to her. I’m pretty sure her “face” is just a mask, but still…

    • January 24, 2018 at 7:44 amCrimson7

      You’re not the only one. I can’t put my finger on why but right now I think Entoma is best Pleiades. So happy she’s somewhat featured in the OP.

    • January 24, 2018 at 12:00 pmJohn

      she’s basically black widow underneath so you’re not wrong

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:43 pmPancakes

      Have to agree, she has the cute factor, although the lacking of moving mouth when speaking is slightly disturbing lol.

    • January 26, 2018 at 4:49 amAllnighter

      I still find her disturbing cute even though I know what she eats for “snacks” in Nazarick.

  • January 24, 2018 at 10:51 amewok40k

    I am genuinely interested in how the situation will progress – I presume Lizerdmen might end up in service of Einz, after proving themselves to be so resourceful bunch…

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:52 pmPancakes

      One way or another we should find out next week :P

  • January 24, 2018 at 1:24 pmKling_Klang

    I was wondering if the series was going to explore the differences in Ainz’s actions when fighting real world opponents that actually suffer and die vs playing a fantasy game and that was the reason for all of the time spent with the lizardmen.

  • January 24, 2018 at 4:16 pmordnance11

    Or just when the Lizard men are celebrating their victory, Ainz shows up in true villain fashion and decided to curb stomp them.

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:44 pmPancakes

      Always a distinct possibility, but I don’t think the lizardmen have pissed him off that much. Yet :P

  • January 24, 2018 at 5:35 pmbanzemanga

    I don’t mind them telling the development story of the lizard-men. However, I hate the fact that Ainz himself is not getting any screen time. They could have kind of do things in parallel. That way we get development on both sides of the story.

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:51 pmPancakes

      Agreed, I can see why this arc was adapted as is, but a little creativity could have arguably given all the necessary information while keeping the critics happy. Hard to know if it would have worked well, but I think we’ll have a better idea in hindsight once this season is over.

  • January 24, 2018 at 6:16 pmSaurus Warrior

    Rare footages of Lustria lizardman army defending again the Vampire Court army

    • January 24, 2018 at 8:47 pmPancakes

      Thank god I’m not the only one who thought of that. When the skeletons rushed in all I was waiting for was Mannfred von Carstein to pop out and start ripping faces off. Hell the lich even looks a little like Helman Ghorst XD

  • January 25, 2018 at 9:25 amDanpmss

    Holy crap, they rushed through half of the book’s whole content. So many important stuff missing out.

    The storytelling and execution of the whole plot, developments and overall presentation (especially regarding the characters) was ruined in my honest opinion.

    You guys should really give the book for this arc and the last a try, they are completely different animals from their anime counterpart.

    • January 26, 2018 at 4:45 amAllnighter

      Seems they’re doing some rushing to sure the Jaldabaoth part is covered according to the opening song.

    • January 27, 2018 at 2:59 pmDP

      It may be the English translation, but the anime is a lot better written and paced than the novels. They aren’t the worst light novels I’ve read, but – at least in English translation – they are very bad compared to the run of mill fantasy literature. Their only saving grace is that the basic concept is pretty imaginative.

      I can’t help but think the anime would be stronger if the character designs of some of the main various minions weren’t goofy as all heck (especially Mare, Aura, and Demiurge). I can live with a few of the minor characters being walking embarrassments (as that’s part of the story) but everything they want me to take demurge, mare or aura seriously it pulls me out of the narrative. Characters like Crusch, Albedo, Cocytus, etc. are weird but at least look like they belong in the right genre.

  • January 25, 2018 at 9:39 amRedRocket

    I really enjoying this so far. But I was expecting a long story with plenty of world-building along the way when I heard the volume count. And the Lizardmen when you’re expecting a long story were to me very enjoyable.
    All the strategy and cute romance were nice for the Lizardmen who in this episode were the hero’s and won a hard-fought victory.

    Of course, as pointed out elsewhere the enemy the Lizardmen faced were minions of minions of minions of minions of Ainz. All the undead troops from basically free daily summons. Ainz lost basically nothing.

    Now I want a picture of Ainz reading the Overlord’s handbook which is basically Ainz in this story. Ainz is carefully building up and carefully measuring his foes. Almost all the overconfidence mistakes of the normal villain avoided as Ainz acts like he is the weaker party most of the time. Many a story would end way quicker and differently with Ainz the villain.

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:00 amPsithief

    I think the opening sequence (first shown this week) was significantly more boring than last season’s, in both music and visuals.

  • January 25, 2018 at 10:01 amtheirs

    I think I’ll be a wee bit sad when these lizard guys die. Considering Ainz’s goal during the first season, I think it’s rather inevitable.

    Random question, can we actually see Entoma’s mouth parts when she was eating that snack?

  • January 25, 2018 at 1:41 pmMechamorph

    Well I have been hoping that Madhouse will pull a rabbit out of their hats and surprise me. As adorable as Crusch and Zaryusu’s romance is, I think the upcoming one featuring a member of Nazarick in the very next arc has loads more pathos. That is not to say that there is zero pay off for this volume but I think that the events of volume 4 were relatively pointless. Later volumes interconnect people, places and events from the New World. Characters introduced as bit players become significant later or we see what happened to them since the events of a previous volume. The goblins of Carne Village for example get their own focus chapters in volumes 7 and 8 for example and a certain someone introduced in this season has a neat connection to a minor character from the previous one. In a way the author did write himself into a corner a little bit; the lizardmen are disconnected from greater events happening in the world due to their isolated society and very few creatures in the New World can serve Nazarick as foot soldiers. Here’s to hoping that Episode 4 wraps it all up well and then we can fondly remember the lizardmen as we go into the next arc.

    And I would be very disappointed if they removed my favourite scene from volume 4 which involves Ainz finally publicly punishing Shalltear for her “rebellion” from last season.

  • January 25, 2018 at 9:43 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    REALLY??? man, and here i thought it was ALL part of the “supreme ones” plan to unite the lizards only to ultimately serve under his banner.

    but you saying this show is REALLY going for the bad guy role COMPLETELY??

    thats interesting and NEW…make me feel weird……I LIKE IT

  • January 26, 2018 at 2:28 amDamrod

    Quite nice they managed to beat that elder lich indeed.
    Show Spoiler ▼

    The one downside however is that they didn’t really give any info on the skills and abilities used. The lizard man arc is admittedly weak but when they reached this stage it got better. Then again, those things might be explained next episode. If so, it would be rather fun getting up to speed again when they use abilities :P