「英傑の詩」 (Eiketsu no Uta)
“Songs of Heroism”
Hear, hear! The lovely Robina Goodfellow (Suzuki Eri) is here to perform songs about true heroism, singing melodies about heroes long gone, but never forgotten. I believe in fair criticism and I have to give it to the production staff because they did a good job with Robina’s casting, the medieval troubadour style and lyrics was tastefully done and set up an enjoyable mood. This endearing halfling–whose fast paced excitement reminded me way too much of the deceased halfling Penny in my D&D party–joins Menel in Will’s unofficial rank of friendships, landing second place alongside her traveling companion, Tonio (Yusa Kouji), a human merchant who brings a much needed experience that only an adult can bring. I think it’s safe to assume this party is still incomplete (if Aragorn’s look-a-like at the ending has anything to say about that), but we’re getting there folks!
In Songs of Heroism young Will gets to learn more about the impact his parents and grandpa had on their current society and that their real names remain a mystery to the general public, but their honorable deeds and image continues to be carried through generations. Will we get to meet that half-elf lady that Mary, Blood and Gus saved from being sacrificed? That would be an interesting encounter since it seems Will plans to keep his origins a secret for the meantime. I’m personally glad to see that the author continues to explore Mary, Blood and Gus’ characters through the lens of those who have been impacted by their legacy. Will’s love and admiration for his parents knows no boundaries, but the truth is that even after their reveal, much still remains unknown to the young man, but with this choice in storytelling the author shows us how even after death, we can still grow close to those we love and cherish… some would even go as far as saying that’s how you achieve true immortality: by living through people’s memories.
At the end of the episode Tonio poses an interesting question for Will: what is it that he truly seeks in his journey? What is it that Will, as an individual, wants long-term? Well, the truth is, he doesn’t have an answer other than evangelizing in the name of Gracefeel, but one thing he’s sure of is that he wants to make real friends #cute.
「白帆の都」 (Shiraho no Miyako)
We finally made it to an actual city, and surprise, surprise! Civilization has advanced, Whitesails pro-economy style of ruling has made it possible for accessories to be trendy–people can afford frivolities–magicians have developed some form of electricity and Bali style recovery centers are a thing! Like seriously, 80% of my expat community here in Canggu goes to the sauna and cold plunge, though I’m not one of them
There’s a reason why the corrupted religious figure has become a trope. We’ve seen enough real life examples (ancient and contemporary) to have this image turned into a stereotype as well as countless portrayals of such in various forms of media and literature–one of my favorites being Dostoyevsky’s Grand Inquisitor chapter in Brothers Karamazov. The introduction of Bishop Bagley seems to foreshadow a future bigger involvement with the hierarchical religious order on the show. I’m sure there’s still much to see from the impact of Gracefeel’s Gospel being spread by her Paladin Priest William G. Maryblood.
An opportunity to properly tests his skills comes in the form of a Wyvern, a Dragon like creature that releases a poisonous miasma from its body, fire from its mouth and has enough strength to destroy an entire city by its lonesome self. And even with Menel’s help, the defeat of such beast doesn’t come as easily, even though he finishes the creature by breaking its neck with his own muscle strength. I take it this is an important moment followed by his meeting with the king of Whitesails, because the leader’s surprise at the lack of members in Will’s party–meaning Will has done the job of a Magician, Priest and Warrior–speaks volumes about the current level of skill in this world. Heroic figures compared with Mary, Blood and Gus appear to be absent from the current timeline, even though demons roam freely around and continue to cause destruction and suffering. I wonder if we’ll eventually uncover some nefarious political plot that might explain the current state of negligence and lack of real power against these threats and injustices happening.
Oh, and by the way, this author does not help me at all when she decides to dress Menel like this. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love it, but JEEZ, makes it hard to consider any other possible love interest for Will aside from my lovely bratty Elf.