A bit of action does surprisingly little to bring excitement to the series.
What They Say:
“You smell good, Demon King. And I feel safe in your arms, Hero.”
Hero has been given a chance to see how the losing side lives after a battle and it sickens him. The Winter Prince unfortunately earns a new title, as the Demon King realizes a year has gone by and she and Hero haven’t advanced at all.
Content: (please note that the content portion of a review may contain spoilers)
This episode starts off with a little more action as we see the Hero on one of his missions. Later, the humans attempt to take over the demon-held island, Bright Light Island, but receive a sudden attack from the sea. You would think, in a show that is so talky, that these moments would amp up the excitement, but there’s a connection missing from them — the person the Hero saves is unknown to us, and the main character to die in the ship attack is only important to another character who has rarely shown his face — and this unfortunately keeps the scenes from being really engaging.
What does draw you in are the conversations that occur afterwards. The Hero learns of the cruel, almost slave-like way the demons who lost are being treated in the city, and though he’s aware that the demons would have done the same to the humans, he knows it’s not right to be treated this way just because you lost. Meanwhile the Winter Prince, who’s father died in the attack, is threatened by the people who provide financial aid to his country because of the new agricultural methods the Crimson Scholar has developed, and also feels guilt over the supposed death of the Hero, knowing what a ruse his quest was. So while talks of economics and crop rotation don’t make it into this episode, there’s still some interesting insight into the real cost of war.
Like in most episodes there isn’t too much character development, but we do see a new, growing bond between the Demon King and the Knight. This comes first in a very careful, wordless way, as the Demon King comes upon the Knight as she waits for her students, and they stand calmly together. But then we see their closeness in a bigger way, as the Demon King admits who she is before he Knight leaves for the war. Though we’re never too worried, it’s a fine relief when the Knight declares that as long as she is unashamed of who she is, the Demon King’s only sin is lying. This is taken away a little bit when we see that the Hero had told the Knight of this ahead of time, asking the Knight not to judge her for it, but this also reestablishes the trust that had already been developed between the two of them.
In the end the Hero makes a brief return to see the Demon King after avoiding her for an entire year. This of course immediately turns into a fight, which starts off funny, and then quickly veers into stupid as the Hero calls her the “flabby Demon King”, an insult that sounds more like the oddly bold Head Maid than the shy Hero. It turns cute again as they have a dance in the house, but even that ended in a different kind of frustration as the pair once again fails to really express their feelings, even though it’s obvious how much they care for each other.
Unlike previous episodes, this one actually has some action in it, as the Hero defends a demon girl and a fleet of ships going to Bright Light Island is decimated by a group of giant squid. Unfortunately, this doesn’t actually add to the excitement, since it mostly involves characters we don’t know or see so rarely as to not feel much of a connection, like the Winter Prince. Instead it’s the conversations that garner the most interest, bringing what little character development that occurs forward. Amazingly, amid all the action I really missed the talks about farming and economics, so I’m crossing my fingers that the Demon King still has another secret vegetable up her sleeve.
Streamed by: Crunchyroll
Review Equipment: 13″ Apple Macbook set to 720p