「苛政は寅よりも猛し / 士は己を知る者の為に死す」 (Kasei wa Tora yori mo Takeshi / Shi wa Onore o Shiru Mono no Tame ni Shisu)
“Tyranny Is More Terrible than Tigers / A Warrior Will Die for One Who Understands Him”
After a weeks’ delay courtesy of ISP providers doing the stupid (technology sucks at times), damn does it feel nice being back in the world of Genjitsu – even if, comparatively, not much has really happened. Yeah yeah, reparations were had and rebellious lords put in their place, but in the end we’re still waiting on the next big thing forcing Kazuya’s hand. Hopefully marriage doesn’t wind up being it.
Probably my biggest irk for this season of Genjitsu so far is how it’s largely been talking. Although this is admittedly a series about the fine art of negotiation and verbal conquest, every episode to date has effectively been one back and forth scene of auditorial jousting – which, even for me it must be said, does grow stale after a bit. Even Legend of the Galactic Heroes, a series famous for such bouts, interspaced its moments of worded clarity with scenes of battle and subterfuge, helping promote and retain interest in parts which for the average viewer could otherwise be incredibly stale. Genjitsu has all the same pieces to work with, but as of this moment this season hasn’t utilized them in a similar fashion. So far it’s all about the talking, and it’s anyone’s guess when the more livelier aspects might finally come into play.
In terms of actual material though, there’s no denying Genjitsu knows what it’s doing. Besides the fun of coercing reparations out of Amidonia – something, to be fair, they couldn’t refuse even if convinced to try doing so – we got a first-hand lesson in what it means to lose a war in the feudal era courtesy of Duke Carmine. While it does seem excessive to allow a loyal retainer commit suicide after showing his actions were done for the sake of the kingdom, such actions are par the course for these environments: you raise your hand in rebellion, no matter the reason, and you forfeit your life. Even families are not immune, with the underlying reason being not that the son bears the sins of the father, but that the son may pursue vendetta for the sake of the father. Not only does Kazuya understand this (which is why he allows it even though inherently against it), but also Liscia, which is why for as much as she liked Carmine she doesn’t raise a voice in protest. Stability in monarchies is defined by how well the monarch holds a grip on power, and so far Kazuya shows no intention of letting anyone challenge his claim to the throne.
Whether or not marriage winds up proving his downfall in that regard remains to be seen, but I suspect a little embarrassment won’t hurt in the greater scheme of things. After all, best girl Aisha is moving up in the ranks, and you damn well bet I’m going to take all the pointy eared blushing I can get. All of it.