Record of Grancrest War Ep. 3: Remarkably empty

Siluca pretty much captures how I feel about this show. I have no interesting analysis to kick off this post. This anime is too boring for that. Let’s just jump right into the notes I took while watching the episode.

— Some priestess drops by the castle and wishes to join Theo’s group. Siluca is rightfully suspicious of her, but our hero lets the girl in. It’s really hard to respect Theo as a protagonist, because he’s just really, really dumb. He’s naive and useless. All he’s here for is being a charismatic figurehead, and he can’t even get the charismatic part down.

— Later that night, everyone’s being rowdy. I assume people are happier under Theo’s rule, but who can really tell? Has our lord visited the villages under his rule? Has he seen the people who pay their taxes to him? Is he addressing their needs? No clue. I’m not sure what kind of story Record of Grancrest War wants to be. On the surface, it seems like Theo will rise up from nothing, lead an army across the land, and liberate people from the evil nobility. But we never actually see if he treats his people well.

— At the very important table for very important people, Theo’s closest confidants discuss their next moves. In other words, Siluca does all the planning, and Theo just goes along with it. A lots of names are being dropped. Lord this, viscount that, so on and so forth. Again, Record of Grancrest War drops the ball. It wants to paint this elaborate political picture, but this is the first time we’ve heard of any of these people. I have a hard time picturing the current state of affairs, because we’re only three episodes into the story, and none of them have devoted any time to political intrigue. A short series full of 24 min episodes is just not the right format for this kind of story.

— Sartorus suggests that perhaps Siluca has been ignoring Theo’s wishes. I find that ridiculous, really. Our lord’s a grown-ass man. If he has something on his mind, he can say it. Furthermore, he’s supposed to be a leader. Why are they following him if his servant mage can just run roughshod over him? Maybe Siluca should’ve just been the primary protagonist. I don’t really understand why Theo is even needed at all as a character. His battle prowess isn’t great, he’s not gifted at strategizing, and he can’t even deliver awesome speeches. Other than the fact that he has a crest and isn’t an evil dirtbag, why is he here?

— But look, even Siluca blushes when she’s around him. I doubt they’ll even fall in love with each other. This is the type of anime that will leave enough breadcrumbs for pairing hopefuls to think that there’s even remotely a chance of romance between the two main characters. I can’t see Record of Grancrest War getting a sequel, however, so this pairing won’t even get the chance to get off the ground.

— All of a sudden, there’s an incident at a nearby village. Fire has broken out, and… sheesh, this guy gets it bad.

— Oh no, it’s a magical being made out of pure fire! So what does our brilliant lord do? He charges in headfirst and tries to beat the Salamander with his sword. Even the other characters are like, “Yo, WTF, is this guy for real?”

— Luckily, Theo has surrounded himself with experts through sheer luck. That priestess that we met earlier? Well, she’s a healer. Of course she is; all priestesses are healers.

— Meanwhile, Siluca does the sensible thing and hatches a plan to defeat the Salamander with water. Unfortunately, even though the fire spirit is trapped in a bubble, it’s still going to explode. Our mage decides to protect the priestess at the very last second, so she has nothing left for herself.

— Theo finally finds the one thing he can do: protect his waifu. I guess that’s good enough to be lord of the land these days.

— Next morning, Siluca wakes up in her bed and realizes she’s been out for too long. Time to get changed! Record of Grancrest War is unsure of what it wants to be, so it just does everything in a half-assed fashion. Does it want to be a fantasy adventure anime with demons and monsters? Well, we have war stuff to get to. Does it want to have a story full of political intrigue? Well, we don’t have time for any of that. Does it want to lewd it up? Not really, but here’s Siluca in just her panties. But this is pretty weak fanservice. There’s nothing to gawk at, so why even bother?

— Afterwards, Siluca pays Theo a visit and finds him quite injured. Protecting waifus is harder than you think, man. She also wants to know if she’s been ignoring his wishes, but he just says nah. Whatever she wants is good with him. Dude’s got no personality whatsoever.

— There’s some talk about how mages are taken away from their parents at a young age. Kinda like Jedis, I guess. None of this is all that interesting, but we learn that Siluca has a foster father.

— The King of Sarvis — again, not a character we’ve heard of until this week’s episode — would rather just fight Theo than work with him, so we get a bunch of horrible CGI soldiers marching in square formations. I know A-1 Pictures has two other shows this season on top of helping out with Darling in the FranXX. I know they have Persona 5 coming up along with some goddamn SAO spinoff (hey, the franchise prints money). But still, this is an embarrassing effort.

— None of the other lords have responded to Theo’s call for help just yet, so it’s just him and his guys against this King of Savis. Being the boring hero that he is, he thus tells everyone to let him fight the entire army alone, because we’ve been told that crest-holders are like raid bosses in this universe. It’s funny how we’ve yet to see this in practice.

— Those miners that Theo helped save earlier? Well, they’ve decided to show up and lend a hand. And they literally marched up in their work clothes. They’re also equipped with nothing but torches and hammers. You guys know you’re up against armored soldiers, right?

— Nevertheless, Theo ejects a bunch of weird light threads from his crest, and this somehow forms a magical flag. It’s his flag. The flag descends on everyone, and I thought he was going to magically grant them armor for the upcoming battle. But no, they just get his emblem on their clothes. Welp, that’s real useful.

— More bad CGI.

— As the armies clash, Theo finally gets some good news: the free lords have shown up to help him after all! I’m shocked!

— Even the 2-D animation is bad. He’s supposed to be closer to us than Siluca in this screenshot, but it looks like she is super tall compared to him and his horse.

— In the end, Theo emerges victorious, and the King of Savis can only run away into the forest. He swears to get his revenge, though. Look at all these dead bodies. All for what, really? Just petty squabbles between the nobility. I thought the idea behind the show was that Theo would use his crest to fight back against the demons of Chaos. But honestly, all he’s done is fight other humans.

— Where are all the demons? Where’s the fun? Where are all the heroic moments that is supposed to help rally the audience behind Theo?

— At the end of the episode, Siluca pays some lady a visit. It’s time for Theo to switch sides, and this means he’ll pledge his allegiance to said lady. But I’m too bored at this point to care. I guess I’m just blogging this show to fill up a slot on Saturday nights. It’s not even fun to mock like, say, Killing Bites or Death March. Much like its hero, Record of Grancrest War is just kinda there.

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5 Replies to “Record of Grancrest War Ep. 3: Remarkably empty”

  1. tbh manga adaptation is a much better, albeit not a terribly creative and exciting affair.
    in comparison anime cuts out/changes a lot of character interactions and instead occasionally inserts some bland expositions compiled from/squeezed outta those cutouts, also it tones down fanservice and humour.
    and while streamlining/simplifying a storyline ain’t a bad thing by itself, in this case results are just so infinitely boring and derivative, it’s mind boggling.
    i would honestly just drop it like it’s hot, since this will only get some measly twelve eps, of which the first two i had displeasure to watch got like ten manga chapters squeezed in em, with plenty of cuts.
    so all in all it’s not worth it, imo.

  2. Theo must be the protagonist because he’s a Man and she’s just a girl to protect, that’s how these all this stories work

  3. Man, honest to god, this anime adaptation sucks so far. It swaps event unnecessarily, skips a lot of needed details and plot points and rushes its story like Road Runner running from Will E. Coyote. The story comes from a novel, it was then adapted into manga form where it rushed the story but, believe it or not, now the anime adaptation rushes the story even more than the manga. Why oh why? They have 24 episodes to work on, why not take their time to flesh out the characters, the world and the plot like the novel did? And they make the battle looks dumb too.

    “Has our lord visited the villages under his rule? Has he seen the people who pay their taxes to him? Is he addressing their needs? But we never actually see if he treats his people well.”

    The answer to all the above questions is “yes”. He’s pretty much the people’s lord but of course the anime brilliantly skips all those parts that will give more character to the MC and fleshing him out more.

    “I thought he was going to magically grant them armor for the upcoming battle. But no, they just get his emblem on their clothes. Welp, that’s real useful.”

    It’s called Patriot Flag and it actually grants Theo’s people (those with the emblems) with boosted battle strengths. Why Theo suddenly have this skill? Well, because only Lords with the ranks of Baron and above can use Flag, and Theo have fulfilled that condition at this point. His Flag was quite useful to the point where it can turn inexperienced noobs into decent and competent soldiers. Imagine the boost for those who are already skilled in battles. But the thing is, the enemy also has his own Flag called Phalanx with different-but-also-useful boost function. And…you guessed it, the anime with its infinite wisdom decided to play skip and scrap with it as well as with the rest of the battle tactics.

    And those are only some portions of things that the anime either decided to skip or rush through. Grancrest might be a traditional RPG story, but it’s not witless or dumb, and it has some actual charms. If only the anime can decently represent those elements. *sigh*

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