For once, I share Theo’s feelings.
He soon starts dancing with Siluca, and y’know what? I don’t really mind the anime that much when it slows down and allows the characters time to breathe. Their personalities are allowed to come through, and even though said personalities are nothing we haven’t seen before, a little emotional engagement never hurts. Anyways, it’s Margaret’s 25th birthday, which means she’ll no longer be contracted to Villar Constance. His castle is a revolving door of beautiful, young mages. So in his own words, he’d be giving Margaret preferential treatment if he allows her to stick around. But is that so bad? Who would care? Other mages, perhaps, but then so what? Let them complain. But as we soon learn, Villar’s issues with women are a little more complicated than merely placing them on a pedestal. He was abused and mistreated by his own mother, but he wishes to believe that she acted out of true benevolence. Nevertheless, the damage is done.
Margaret tearfully confesses her love for him, but he merely replies, “You were the woman I could trust more than anyone else.” His choice of words is telling, aren’t they? After all, you can trust someone more than anyone else, and yet, not really trust them as much as you should. And can you really say that you love women if you put them on a pedestal?
Elsewhere, Theo’s mere existence continues to rankle Milza. He can’t help but insult the hero for clumsily traipsing around the dance floor with Siluca. But the thing with Theo is that he’s far too pure. As expected from a bog standard anime hero, he’s annoyingly pure. Witness the “comeback” of the century: “Even if it’s as a buffoon, to earn any praise from you, Lord Milza, would be a lifelong source of pride for me.” Yes, yes, kill your bullies with kindness. Milza is so impressed that he directly challenges Theo to a duel. Right here, right now, in the middle of our dear Margaret’s birthday celebration?
Say it isn’t so!
But it is so. And our hero’s reluctance to fight back has him backpedaling. Even when he finally decides to strike back against Milza, he’s already in a disadvantageous position so he is quickly defeated and humiliated. Luckily, only Siluca bears witness to the fight, and she’d never abandon his side. Still, we sadly have two extremes in action. Milza is a faithful adherent to the notion that the best defense is a good offense. He won’t hesitate to butcher his enemies, and in doing so, he can guarantee the safety of his allies. On the other hand, Theo’s hesitance may cost his allies their lives. But our hero counters, “So you strive for oppression, I see.” It’s a shame because there are definitely flaws with how our hero chooses to approach conflicts, and yet, it’s hard to root for a sociopath like Milza. He goes on and on about how he doesn’t respect those who lack ambition, but then he turns around and says, “Eventually, I will serve as the fangs of the one who becomes emperor.” So much for ambition, huh? This guy is just a follower like the rest. As a result, Theo is not the least bit swayed.
He reiterates his desire to follow his own path, and Siluca follows suit.
Okay, I’m now done talking about the parts of the episode that I don’t mind so much. Sadly, the rest of the episode reminds me exactly why it’s so difficult to get into Record of Grancrest War. Some important Union meeting is about to go down, and Villar intends to show up with conquered lands under his name. Apparently, Lassic has been quite a busy bee, and the anime quickly throws a bunch of info at us that is hard for me to care about because I feel as though I’m only hearing about them for the very first time.
Something Forbes, something Clovis, Brannis, Ladvan… ugh, I can feel my eyes rolling to the back of my head. Apparently, Lassic conquered Sievis, and this made Forbes and Clovis “agitated.” So the plan is to conquer them. Why? Why are we doing this? I’ve no clue. And someone who is read the manga or whatever might feel the need to chime in and fill me in on all the necessary details, but don’t bother. I won’t read it. I want the anime to explain it to me. I don’t want to receive supplemental information from the show’s viewers.
In the end, we see Milza butcher Brannis and his underlings, so next week, it’ll be Theo’s turn to return to the battlefield most likely. And I feel as though we’re right back where we started: endless battles between lords for lands I don’t care about. Whatever happened to Theo and Siluca grinding for EXP in the forest?