Zetsuen no Tempest Episode 15: You Seem to be Plotting Something
“I don’t need to hear that from someone with a sister complex like you!” -Megumu Hanemura
Summary: Megumu meets with Evangeline and Natsumura, and after a rather shocking display of power, the pair take him to be interrogated by Mahiro. I’ve seen jellyfish with more spine than Megumu so it becomes clear very quickly to Mahiro that he couldn’t have killed her. Yoshino and Hakaze spend some time at an amusement park (why?) where Hakaze comes to realize that she’s fallen for Yoshino. Despite a seemingly carefree veneer, it looks like this respite will be short lived as Samon and the rest are already plotting their next move.
Impressions: Wow, the one-liners this episode were extra snappy. Mahiro was even more of a grump than usual, Samon was sarcastic and great, even resident push-over Megumu managed to get a couple of great lines in and even bring up a topic that no one else had dared to touch on. While the writing was very well done, for some reason everything else failed to really grab my attention. I feel like, while I still really enjoy the characters, right now the plot is kinda…lost. We’re still on the dead girlfriend thing, which hasn’t made any progress in what feels like forever, both of the trees are there but not really there, and while there are hints that Samon, Evangeline, Trench Coat, and that one other dude have something planned for Megumu, it seems like ZnT doesn’t really know what it’s doing right now. I mean, Yoshino and Hakaze are hanging out at an amusement park (for reasons that maybe I missed the explanations for?) doing nothing. Nothing. Really Hakaze? Don’t you maybe have better things to be doing right now than having Junichirou conveniently show up to make you notice that you’re in love with Yoshino?
An-y-way. Following last week’s fight between Hakaze and Megumu, and how that turned out, I guess Hakaze decided to hand Megumu over to Samon’s Tree of Exodus camp. Now, I can’t really say I totally follow Hakaze’s logic there, since it doesn’t strike me as the best of ideas to hand over your enemies “ultimate weapon”, if you will, when you could just as easily dispose of him and be done with it. That way you’d have beaten him, instead of allowing him to grow stronger under Mahiro’s abuse/training. Maybe it would go against her code of ethics. Or the logic of the world (which hasn’t really been all to logical so far, when you think about it.) Megumu, for his part, proves this episode that while he can’t fight, and he without a doubt could never kill anyone, does have a lot of power.
If that is actually the power of the Mage of Exodus remains to be seen, but it’s hard to argue with the fact that he made a whole chunk of the Tree of Genesis disappear without even knowing for sure if he could do it. He even has his moments of spark, like when he finally confronted Mahiro about the fact that he might have a sister complex and/or be in love with her. Finally! Someone brought that up! It’s only taken 15 episodes, and it came from the least likely of characters, but we finally get to see Mahiro’s reaction to the mention of how he might really feel about Aika. Mahiro, being a natural grouch, flat out denies it but you can kinda tell that while he might have considered that what he felt towards Aika was love, the thought made him so uncomfortable that he’s probably been avoiding it ever since. Hey, we still might be wondering who killed her, but at least we’re moving just a tiny, tiny bit forward in the exploration of Aika and Mahiro’s relationship. Baby steps, guys, baby steps.
Else where in Samon’s camp, Evangeline, Natsumura, and that other guy who is so unimportant and such a tacked on character I haven’t even bothered to remember his name are all up to something involving body armor. Samon seems in on it too towards the end, and it’s looking like Megumu will be the one wearing it. In public. At a demonstration where he’s going to show everyone his powers. Oh, and did I mention that the suit looks like something straight out of Power Rangers? Because that’s what it looks like. It seems really, really, silly.
And leads to the other problem I’m having with the show: it’s suddenly throwing a lot of weird, not really actually funny comedy type stuff into a show that, up till now, has had a pretty serious tone. There were some funny parts but it was mostly just one line, or a short scene. It’s almost like now I’m watching a completely different show. This is no longer Zetsuen no Tempest but Wacky Hijinks staring Mahiro Fuwa with special guests the Kusaribe Clan! There’s not even any more random quotes from Hamlet or The Tempest! I’m fine with comedy, really I am (…for the most part), but not when it’s used like filler to distract me from the fact that the plot is moving forward at a speed that would make snails looks like cheetahs.
As I mentioned before, Hakaze and Yoshino are at an amusement park, which really just a set up for Junichirou to show up for the sole purpose of pointing out that Hakaze is in love with Yoshino. Over reactions on Hakaze’s part follow. If there’s one thing you can take away from this episode it’s that the real way to know if you’re in love or not is if you want to touch the other person’s earlobes all night long. The more you know, I guess? Aside from Hakaze’s slightly creepy rantings about Yoshino, the actual most important part was when Junichirou mentions that she shouldn’t fall in love with someone with a girl friend, since the Tree of Genesis might kill that girl in order to make Hakaze’s wish come true. It opens up a whole realm of speculation as to what could have actually happened to Aika. I personally think that she killed herself, so that this whole thing would be set in motion, but the idea that she was killed in the past by the Tree of Genesis to make Hakaze happy is also an interesting one.
With Samon still believing that Yoshino is a better candidate than Megumu as the actual Mage of Exodus, it’ll be interesting to see how next episode plays out. Will Hakaze’s crush have some unintended consequences? What exactly is this plan that Samon has involving costumes? Is Mahiro ever going to stop glaring at people? I hope things don’t get too silly next episode, and that maybe they’re be some plot developments. Well, at least the animation is still nice, right?
Final Thought: In my mind, I like to think that Megumu’s girlfriend either 1. is a figment of his imagination or 2. is one of those human sized dolls and that’s the real reason why she can’t confirm his alibi for the night when Aika was killed. Somehow, it fits with character I think.