「負けざる戦士」 (Makezaru Senshi)
“An Unvanquished Warrior”
Ai meets Ai
Now that’s odd. Ai refuses to summon her pet, Leon. However, the Accas force her to bring it out and make her crack the egg, summoning – a parallel universe version of herself. The implication is obvious. Anyone who comes from an egg has committed suicide. So what drove this Ai to seek out her end? We discover that she remained a recluse and never had friends like Koito. Or Momoe, Rika and Neiru for that matter. And having no support infrastructure when the demon in her life, Sawaki announces he will be marrying her mother, pushes her over the edge.
It’s gonna sound a lot more shallow for someone to tell a suicidal person they know what that suicidal person is going through, especially when we’re talking about souls in the after life where one committed suicide and the words only really seem to come from a place of judging hindsight. But I really like how the series explored suicidal regret. Of course, Ai is going to know the regret other Ai experiences. Because although their lives took different trajectories, they’re fundamentally the same person. And that’s what makes it different, in terms of avoiding condescension while approaching the topic with delicacy and maturity.
Another fascinating implication is that, both Koito and Ai were in love with Sawaki. I’m not entirely sure who’s outlook on Sawaki is correct. Especially since Koito did commit suicide (though I suppose last episode would have us believe it was all caused by Frill). I do think he comes across as very dodgy for reasons I’ve explained in previous episode posts. However, maybe that’s the show taking things in a particular direction to lead us to that sort of conclusion. e.g. the Accas being ‘evil’. Maybe it’s the shows way of making Ai an unreliable ‘narrator’ by including distortions from her perspective on matters. Who knows. Nevertheless, I’m satisfied that Ai accepted and came to terms with her unvocalised and unrequited feelings towards Sawaki, allowing her to move past traumas towards a brighter, happier future.
An Inconclusive Finish
The Acca’s motives did let slip. Their goal being to bring back Himari from the dead, which explains the interest in parallel universes because a parallel universe Himari seems like the obvious way to go about things. But too many questions were left completely unanswered. While we reach the summation of Ai’s character arc, where she meets a version of herself from the parallel universe who never got over her perception of Sawaki, we would be hard pressed to call this a definitive conclusion. Momoe and Rika are still in precarious positions. Rika looks like she’s spiraling into darkness. We have no clue what happened with Neiru. And to be frank, I still have no idea what warriors of Eros or Thanatos mean in the grand scheme of this series.
Most importantly? Did I love Wonder Egg Priority? For sure. It was clearly a passion project. It tried to make adventurous forays into lesser explored territories of the medium, and arguably attempted to break through some boundaries. Which anime needs more of, even if Wonder Egg Priority was marred by a litany of production issues. Did you know one of the episode directors was hospitalised yet insisted working from a hospital bed so he could try to meet the deadline? It’s heartbreaking. But realistically speaking, there’s not much we as Western fans can change. Tangent aside, I think Cloverworks have done a generally brilliant job on this particular project (*cough* The Promised Neverland *cough*) and the staff deserve to rest up for now.
Even if the ending left me perplexed in some ways, I’m rather hopeful we’ll see a follow-up OVA or season. If an unfinished anime series deserved closure, Wonder Egg Priority is definitely one of them. However, the bluray sales in Japan don’t leave me feeling particularly optimistic. How hot trash like SK8 can have 4000+ bluray sales while Wonder Egg Priority doesn’t even hit 1000 simply goes beyond my personal comprehension. No matter. Keep our fingers crossed and maybe that special broadcast announced for June/July might provide us the send off this series needs.
Anyway, that’s about everything I wanted to discuss. As always, thanks for reading this post and see you all next week!