Ugh, even though there are only two episodes left after this, we’re right back to the light and breezy atmosphere that plagued the show’s first few episodes. Chakuro talks about how the island inhabitants are trying to take back their lives one day at a time, but that’s not what we see at all. There’s no delicate balance between grief and carefree innocence. We simply see the kids instantly snap back to frolicking and giggling as if they hadn’t just lived through a brutal, bloody war for their lives. The aftermath of war is not felt whatsoever. They hold a funeral for the victims, but the gravitas is no different from what we got in the very first episode. Apparently, Sienna committed suicide during the big battle. Do you remember who she is? She’s Eyepatch Man’s wife. We saw a single scene of her begging him for any affection he could offer… and now she’s dead. Okay. That’s pretty much my reaction to her sudden passing. No doubt Eyepatch Man will have a significant role to play in the anime’s final act, but this is so silly when we barely know anything about him or his now dead wife. It’s just like, “Oh, check out this tragedy! This will be important later!”
Elsewhere, it turns out Liodari is still alive. How? Why? Wasn’t he bleeding out from all his wounds? He also somehow makes it back to his home country. Again… how? He had enough energy to make it back? He wants to return to Falaina, though. And you know exactly who to blame for this. Eyepatch Man would’ve finished Liodari off for good, but Suou intervened at the last second. So now, more innocent kids will probably die because of Suou’s inability to even consider detaining an enemy combatant. You don’t have to murder the guy in cold blood, but at least prevent him from escaping and causing more harm. Christ. But before Liodari can return to the battlefield, he apparently has to submit himself to Lykos’s brother. This somehow involves becoming a jester. The thing is, Orca already has three jesters, and all they seem to do is sit around and wait their master. Is that what they do all day? Debase themselves for Orca’s amusement? What exactly is the deal with this? Unfortunately, the show can’t possibly devote time to properly world-building the rest of this universe, so all we get are brief snippets that end up raising far more questions than we could ever hope to answer.
Back on Falaina, the remaining elders try to grill Lykos for some insights. Will the Empire continue to pursue them? The girl admits that she’s nothing more than an ordinary foot soldier, but she still has plenty of insights to offer. A lot of them. To make a long story short, even though the Empire won’t hunt them down, her brother might… This is when Kokalo, that gift from Olivines that had looked like a seashell, suddenly comes to life. It’s apparently a furry thing not all that different from the one they had found on Lykos’s island. It proceeds to lead Chakuro on a wild chase. Great.
More boring stuff happens. We soon see everyone bathing in giant outdoor pools, and that just means fanservice for an anime that doesn’t need any. But sure, let’s look at all these naked kids.
At some point, an outside nation somehow makes contact with Falaina. You get the usual self-important son of a duke, but not much else. There’s just not much time to develop these new faces. Hell, some of the characters we have now aren’t even all that fleshed out. Lykos, for example, plays such a pivotal role in the plot, but her character arc has been horrendously rushed. She goes from emotionless soldier to turning a new leaf in a matter of seconds. She betrays her home country without any hesitation. So naturally, I find it odd to suddenly introduce another character and faction at the eleventh hour. Not only that, Lykos appears to have a beef with Rochalito, so expect next week’s episode to devote some exposition to that.
Eventually, Kokalo makes its way to Ema. She then reveals that the creature is none other than a ship’s helm. Every nous is supposed to have one. How else would you steer the whale? But Falaina is a prison for exiles, so its helm was stolen long ago. With Kokalo, however, Falaina can now go wherever its inhabitants desired. That’s cool, I guess? Why couldn’t our first furry friend, the one from Lykos, also serve as a helm for Falaina? What’s wrong with it? Chakuro also has a ton of other questions to ask, but of course, we never get to them in this week’s episode. I wonder if we’ll get to them at all. Like a lot of shows, they probably want us to dive into the source material to get any meaningful sense of closure from the story.
Later that night, Olivines shows up and pays everyone a visit in their sleep. They shed a tear and the episode ends there. Two more to go. I don’t expect this show to hit any sort of satisfying conclusion at this point. The world just feels so underdeveloped, and the characters don’t fare much better. A setup episode through and through, and yet, it fails to really prime us for the show’s final act. I feel no urgency whatsoever from the plot.