Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu Episode 16: The Greed of a Pig
Anastasia did nothing wrong.
Subaru really hasn’t had it easy these past few episodes, has he? Not that he ever tends to have it easy, but it’s been noticeably worse than usual lately. All his potential allies are now less impressed with him than they were before, and he’s about to get eaten by what I assume to be the White Whale that’s been blocking the quickest road back to Roswaal’s mansion. It’s now somehow made its way to where Subaru is, very possibly because it’s smelled Satella on him, and it also appears to be able to erase everyone else’s memories of its victims in addition to actually killing them. Given the number of bridges Subaru has unwittingly burned this week in his desperation, he’s probably better off dying and trying again, this time armed with the knowledge of the way the king candidates do things and what they’re asking from him in return for their cooperation. Ironically, the one candidate who’s most likely to be moved by Subaru’s sentimentality and has the power to do something about it is Felt, as she’s going to be able to get Reinhard to listen to anything she says, but Reinhard’s not even in the capital any more. This arc would definitely be too easy if Subaru managed to get Reinhard to solve all his problems for him, so from a storytelling perspective this wasn’t too much of a surprise.
In my opinion, Crusch was fairly reasonable. It’s hard to forget that the other candidates aren’t Subaru’s friends by any means, especially since they’re all cute girls, but Crusch treated him surprisingly well given the difference in their status and their relative bargaining power. She first heard him out, asked what he had to offer in return and rejected him while explaining her reasons for doing so. It would be asking far too much of her to be altruistic and save the villagers out of her kindness of her heart, not least of all because she is in competition with Emilia. As Emilia’s removal will happen with or without her involvement, Crusch is right in saying that there is no incentive for her to act. Where I think she’s wrong is her accusation that Subaru only approached Emilia to exact revenge on the cultists, and that Subaru has no intention to save Emilia at all – with regards to the latter, it’s implied perfectly well that he’s so desperate to act because Emilia is in danger, and because there’s no way to get her out of that danger unless every last cultist is dead. And as for the former, we all know that it’s the other way around – his hatred for the cult is indeed personal hatred, but was only kindled way after he met Emilia. It’s difficult to blame Crusch though, because it’s hard to tell otherwise from what she can see – it’s difficult to blame anyone, actually. You can’t help but agree with his frustration towards the other three candidates because they weren’t particularly nice to him, but at the same time it’s not their fault, and they have no reason to be nice to him at all.
Oh wait, actually it’s easier to blame Priscilla. I didn’t really get what she was trying to do, because her actions were purely taken to amuse herself and basically left Subaru with no way of winning. Like Crusch, she was scoping him out, but she never intended to agree at all – Crusch might have done so if there was sufficient benefit to her. I mean, I thought the whole foot licking thing was kind of lewd, but beyond that was she trying to test the extent of his and Emilia’s pride? Was he supposed to treat that as being of higher regard than Emilia’s life? Pride, honour and status are all useless when you’re dead, you know. And was it really necessary to threaten to kill off all his future allies and connections? Even Al thought she was being unreasonable.
Anastasia did nothing wrong. I’m not being biased, by the way – I do think her voice is heaven, and that she’d be great for cuddling, but I also think Priscilla has an amazing body and still I was rather irritated by her this episode. Of the three, Anastasia was the only one who not only gave him proper advice, but also helped him out. His outburst towards her was completely uncalled for. Yes, she manipulated him into giving her information she thought he had, and made careful contingency plans in case something went wrong, but he got something in return, right? She even gave him the info about the dragon-drawn carriages before ascertaining exactly what it was she’d be able to learn from him, and he wasn’t even trying to hide the thing about Russell Fellow visiting Crusch from anyone. Keeping that fact secret wouldn’t even have benefited him in any way, and as Anastasia already knew that Crusch was stockpiling weaponry a piece of info about one of her many suppliers can’t have been of that much value. Subaru basically got a freebie from her, and she could have screwed him over by wheedling stuff out of him before leaving immediately. Instead, he blew up at her after she aided him and took a little something in return for her trouble. Her and Julius are actually trying to teach him things and help him improve despite having a terrible first impression of him, it’s a pity he still hasn’t managed to clear his head and actually listen. Listen to the loli, Subaru! She has money! And she’s cute!