The only winning move is not to play.
— There isn’t really much to say about Glass or the first half of the episode. At first, she’s impressed by Naofumi’s ability to defeat the Soul Eater by himself. But when she goads the other three heroes (and their parties) into attacking her together, she easily brushes them aside. In JRPG terms, it’s like she’s twice their level. If three entire parties can’t even land a single hit, it’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that Naofumi and his loli warriors won’t be able to do anything either.
— Sure enough, they fail to nick that Glass. She nonchalantly breaks Raphtalia’s sword, and even when Filo goes into berserk chicken mode, it is to no avail. Naofumi tries the same Iron Maiden move, but like everything else, it is ineffective.
— Oh no, Glass is so strong! How are our heroes going to get out of this mess! Surprise, surprise, she is out of time. The Wave is about to end in a minute, so Naofumi just hightails it outta there with his girls. Unable to hurt him from long range, Glass has no choice but to retreat to wherever she originally came from. Yawn.
— I almost always hate these trite, unwinnable boss encounters. Even though Glass completely outclasses her opponents, this leads to nothing. She’s just going to screw around until it’s time for the plot to move forward. This encounter will be entirely inconsequential. In contrast, take Luke’s first encounter against Darth Vader. There was no way he he could win, and like Glass, Darth Vader was toying with his victim. He ultimately fails to capture Luke, but my point is that there will still consequences. Not only did the scene lead to a pretty major plot revelation, Luke lost his right hand. On the other hand, this Glass encounter just feels like a waste of time. We burned like ten minutes for nothing.
— Well, not absolutely nothing… if you want to sit there and take some wild stabs in the dark. Since the Wave went away without our heroes needing to defeat Glass, it seems like she’s just a nosy interloper. But before she leaves, she also mentions how her side will be victorious in the end. Sounds like there’s a competition between our heroes and… I dunno, maybe another group of adventurers. And Glass just happens to belong to that second group.
— But man, just how stupid is she? If she’s so hellbent on her side winning in the end, why did she dick around against the heroes? I would’ve just wiped the floor with them. Her team’s not going to be so happy with her.
— Alright, it’s time to deal with the aftermath.
— Badass obasan should teach those kids how to fight like her.
— Naofumi reflects on his defeat and ultimately concludes what he has already decided a couple episodes ago: Raphtalia and Filo need to undergo a class change.
— He then gets dragged into a meeting with the bastard king. At first, the old man lightly praises him, but he quickly goes back to spewing nothing but bullshit. Specifically, he gets on Naofumi’s case for using powers that are “unbecoming.” Uh-huh, whatever that means.
— The problem, however, is that our hero is a giant asshole, too. His situation is already bad enough as it is, but he makes it even worse by being a total dick. Maybe he think that his actions couldn’t hurt, because they already hate his guts. But from my perspective, he’s just lashing out like an immature teenager. He gets a bit of power and he starts talking shit even though there are bigger fishes to fry.
— When the guy leaves the throne room, some woman has nice words to say to him. She also seems to imply that the evil church man from a couple episodes ago might have a bone to pick with Naofumi, but maybe I’m reading too much into the crucifix. Even so, she works for Melty, so she must know something. We also find out that someone is conspiring against the younger princess. Oh ho ho, the conspiracies abound.
— When Melty confronts her father for being, well, a huge jerk for no reason, we can immediately tell that the king hopelessly spoils his daughters. But that still doesn’t explain why he is so hellbent on hating the Shield Hero’s guts. What did the Shield Hero ever do to you! So he drops this little nugget. Uh, what does that even mean? Did the last Shield Hero turn him into a cuckold or something? Looks like we need to have a talk with Melty’s mama. But hey, at least he kinda has a reason for hating the Shield Hero… as stupid as it is. The series is almost half over and we still have no clue why Malty is being portrayed as a raging bitch.
— Anyways, our hero plans to hit the road with his lolis in order to beef them up. Can’t have Glass humiliating them again!
— But they don’t get very far before Melty catches up to them. She then asks Naofumi to apologize to the king for his actions. When our hero predictably refuses, she makes some rather flimsy arguments. Melty points out that they need his help in order to stop the Waves, but uh… he’s already helping them. She then claims that he needs her father’s financial support. Bzzt. You failed again, princess. As much as I dislike the dude as a character, he’s been getting by just fine without any monetary assistance from the king. Plus, her mother is big, fancy queen in her own right. If they want to help Naofumi so badly, they can also loosen their purse strings.
— Plus, no one in that family seemingly wants to address the elephant in the room, i.e. Malty.
— As Melty continues to whine and pout, Naofumi suddenly gets a funny feeling. Then right on cue, one of the princess’s soldiers suddenly charges forward with his sword drawn. Our hero stops the assassination attempt, but the episode ends there on that cliffhanger.
— I just have to laugh, because if you’re really trying to kill Melty in order to frame the Shield Hero, this is a pretty poor way to do it. Lemme just run straight at the guy who pretty much defeated the last Wave! Surely, there’s no way he can stop a simple sword slash!
— Oh well, our hero wanted to travel, but he might not be going anywhere anytime soon.
Hmm, I need to kill the princess I’m escorting. Should I do it now, in the middle of nowhere with no one else around, or wait until she’s right in front of her powerful friends, one of whom has a magic shield?
If his plan was just to kill her and frame Naofumi, it’s not like it matters whether or not he was there to witness it. Besides, you’d think that if some random soldier took the princess’ dead body back and said Naofumi totally did this with the sword he doesn’t have, people wouldn’t just take his word for it *looks at episode 1* oh wait never mind.
The revelation of why they hate the hero of the shield will be a moment of absolute stupid especially considering what the author pretended to expose in this arc, it is as if he had shot himself in the foot.
Spoilers: Malty is actually the reincarnation-via-truck of a girl the author liked in high school but barely looked his way before insulting him.
…Just kidding, but she might as well be.
I haven’t read the manga, so I’m just speculating here.
The soldiers know that Naofumi will stop the assassination attempt, so it’s pretty obvious that he will take the princess with him and escape, so he’ll be accused of kidnapping the princess.
Don’t you think the princess would be able to put that to rest pretty easily?
They’ll just say he brainwashed her or something.
Doesn’t make the story any less stupid.