Zetsuen no Tempest Episode 3: There Are Things Even Magic Cannot Do
“There are no convenient miracles, and there is logic that should be inviolable.” -Hakaze Kusaribe
Summary: The epic battle between Nasumura, the spear-wielding, trenchcoat-wearing mage, and Mahiro continues, leaving a broad swath of destruction in their wake. Meanwhile Yoshino gets a lesson on magic from Hakaze, as he tries to catch up with Mahiro. Using some clever thinking on Yoshino’s part, he and Mahiro are able to defeat Nasumura and make an escape, at least for the time being.
Impressions: Another good-to-average episode. We finally wrap up the fight with Nasumura and get schooled in the limitations and rules governing the use of the Kusaribe clan’s magic. The fight scenes continue to be well animated and beautiful to watch. There were a couple of moments, especially when Mahiro was spinning that lead pipe he had, that were so fluid and well executed, I was left a little speechless. I’m glad that there hasn’t been a significant drop in animation quality, especially during those scenes. For all that the fights are a pleasure to watch, I’m kinda glad that they wrapped it up. I feel like I’ve been watching it those two fight since episode one, and although I know that’s not true, I am glad that they’re finally moving on to other things. There’s only so long I want to watch two guys beat the shit out of each other, however cool it might look, before I get totally bored.
I’m also exceedingly glad that they explained and put some limits on the magic system at work in this show. It’s good to see them have clear boundaries on what can and cannot be done with magic, instead of just saying “Oh, its magic, we can do whatever we want!” It seems that the Kusaribe clan’s magic can only be used to repair, heal, and manage the logic of the world, and seems to be confined to more defensive magic use, instead of offensive. That means no fire balls or summoning giant monsters on a whim, which is a refreshing change of pace as far as the way magic is most often used in fantasy settings like this, at least in my eyes. Although, it’s ironic that something as illogical as magic can only be used here in order to “protect the logic of the world.”
We’ve already seen a couple of ways that magic can be applied to get around the limitations seemingly placed on it, like Yoshino using healing magic to find Mahiro, and using the defensive fields as a way to inflict damage, so I’m looking forward to seeing what other clever ways they think up to use these powers. I’m also left wondering if either Yoshino or Mahiro will turn out to be real magic users, instead of having to rely solely on the use of their talismans. It seems like a bit of an unfair fight to have such a limit on the powers you can use. And it isn’t like they have an unlimited supply of talismans either, so once they run out, how are they going to fight? I guess they’ll cross that bridge when they come to it.
While most of the action focuses on Mahiro this episode, it’s Yoshino who saves the day. He’s proving to be a very quick thinker, able to grasp onto the concept of magic use and think of original ways to use it at an exceptional rate of speed. I’d wager that there’s a lot more to him than meets the eye. We already saw last episode that he’s got a dark side, with how he was able to shoot at Evangeline on the roof without blinking an eye. What other secrets is he hiding? Only time will tell, but I’m putting my money on his whole persona being a front to hide the fact that most of his soul/humanity died when Aika was killed, leaving him as what amounts to a sociopath.
There’s also the reveal at the end of the episode that Aika’s killer was someone from the Kusaribe clan. Yeah…Hands up if you saw that one coming a mile away. Not that I mind, it certainly makes the conflict between Mahiro and the people he’s fighting against a lot more personal and interesting. Now he really has a reason to fight them, instead of just doing it because it’s part of a bargain he made. On a side note, Mahiro’s crazy faces, especially while he’s fighting, really remind me of Truth, from E7AO. I guess it can’t be helped, since it’s the same studio and all, .
If there is one thing that I’ve learned from every movie, book, T.V show, comic, anime, etc. EVER, it’s that bringing people back to life is a bad idea. It’s always going to end horribly for everyone involved. Either you’re going to lose an arm and a leg, or your child is going to come back to life as a psychopathic killer, or you’ll come back as something not yourself, or there’ll be zombies; the list could go on forever. The point is; do not bring things back to life, for it shall only end in heartbreak/death/destruction. So imaging my excitement when Hakaze just flat-out told Yoshino that there was no way Aika could be brought back to life. Finally! A show that from the get go says that resurrecting the dead can’t be done and even if they could, it probably would not be the smartest idea. It’s just nice to see them have a character that’s dead and then stays dead. Or at least, won’t be brought back to life using magic. I’m not totally convinced that she’s either dead in the first place, or won’t be brought back in some other way. I hope I’m wrong thought, and that she will stay in her grave.
Next week’s episode looks like it’ll be exploring Mahiro and Yoshino’s relationship a little and going into how the two of them met. It looks like it might be sickeningly cute, with lots of cute baby Mahiro and Yoshino to go around. If you can think of any other ways in which bringing the dead back to life proves to be a fatal mistake, leave it in the comments! I want to make a big list. Alternatively, if you can think of a book/movie/show etc in which bringing someone (or something) back to life works out for the better, please tell me about it too! Let’s see how many we can come up with.
Final thought: My one grip with the show so far is that HOLY HELL do they like to repeat the same things over and over again in the dialogue. Last episode it was the “time is out of joint” line, this episode Hakaze and Mahiro with the “magic can only be used to protect the logic of the world…repair, heal, and manage it” blah blah blah talk, it’s like “Yup, got it the first time, you can stop beating me over the head with it now.” I’m glad this episode didn’t have anymore Shakespeare lines (I think it’s for the best if they use that trope very sparingly), so I’m hoping future episodes will move away from the need to explain something seven times with only slightly different wording.