We start off with last week’s status quo – Priapus is still incomplete, Maria is still interfering with battles, and Ezekiel is still getting browbeaten into letting Maria do what she wants.
Alex: I’m starting to think that Ezekiel was just put into the story because “wouldn’t it be funny if the angel sent to control Maria was actually an incompetent cute girl voiced by Hanakana?
By the episode’s end, Ezekiel’s begun warming up to the witch and has somewhat accepted a position within her makeshift family.
Alex: In other words, Maria’s one-sided stance on war is justified and Ezekiel will just be a tool to further that dull view.
Priapus is central to this. I’m impressed by his continued development into more than the world’s saddest sex demon. He understands his master well, and his influence is central to Ezekiel’s conversion.
Alex: Wow, that is some grade-C character development right there.
It’d be neat if Priapus’ lack of a member allows him to become something more than a lowly incubus
Alex: We all know that’s not going to happen though, since all he’s been used for is “oh look, I’m a penis-less male. Isn’t that funny?”
The episode’s title, Memento Mori, is a Latin phrase that translates to “remember that you must die.” It’s important because Maria’s interference in the war is just making the population more and more reliant on her to maintain peace. They have no way of taking care of themselves after she dies, so Maria’s just dooming them to a worse conflict down the line.
Alex: In other words, people die in war no matter what, and nothing can change that. Wow, what an original message. Plus, that point where Ezekiel gets roped into Maria’s side kind of dilutes the ambiguity the show is trying to portray.
In her desire to save everyone, Maria overlooks the fact that it just isn’t possible, at least not with a strategy as short-sighted as interfering with battles as they happen. She hasn’t realized that saving one person requires dooming another. Some people live off of war, and they’re not necessarily evil for it.
Anyway, cutting off war also makes desperate profiteers take their frustrations out on local villages. The root of the issue isn’t the existence of war but rather a predatory and self-centered aspect of human nature.
Alex: Jesus Christ, it’s like reading praise for a checklist called “How to make every single war story in the history of war stories”. Of course war isn’t that simple. But that fact by itself is pretty goddamn simple. You need more than just “ambiguity on both sides and how you can’t save everyone”. This is stuff we all know from WWII classes in high school, and it doesn’t help that it’s being told through a bunch of unfunny cardboard anime caricatures. Give me something else! Do something interesting with the “people who interfere with war get punished” angle besides “it doesn’t solve anything”. Or do something interesting with the religious angle.
Meanwhile, Father Bernard is doing his “disinterested and self-serving emblem of religious institution” thing by turning the death of someone the Church failed to aid in life into a PR move.
Alex: …I said something interesting with the religious angle. Not the same old “corrupt priest” shit.
It turns out that Maria’s actions are also harming her fellow witches, who work as mercenaries.
Alex: Not really sure how that works.
Most witches are preoccupied with Earthly affairs, using their powers to accumulate wealth and live lives of indulgence.
Alex: So witches are supposed to represent other countries not directly involved in the Hundred Year War and just live their lives carefree until said war grows to the point that their lives get roughed up.
Viv tries to deflower Priapus upon meeting him and storms off when she learns about his “deficiency,” humiliating the poor incubus.
Alex: Just another example of Maria the Virgin Witch’s failed attempts at being funny.
She also urges Maria to lose her virginity “like, today” and become a member of witch society.
Alex: You cannot stop war, so just accept your fate and fuck a dog already.
Of course, Maria rejects the offer and continues to work alone. With this, it seems that Maria is an exception even among witches. Her severity isolates her from everyone with power, a side-effect that’s certain to have some serious consequences down the line.
Alex: But until these consequences come, we’re just going to have sit through painfully trite “I hate war” messages and unfunny sex jokes that make me wish I was watching a Seth Rogen comedy. Plus, with those three stooges hanging around her, I doubt she’ll ever be really lonely. She seems to be doing just fine without the other witches, who I barely even know, so who cares if she doesn’t interact with them?
I’m shocked by just how much there was to unpack this episode. I’ve written 800 words of pure analysis.
Alex: More like 800 words of pure obvious.
That’s not to say it was just retreading old ground
Alex: Biggest lie I’ve ever seen.
PS: The author would like to make it clear that he has nothing against the reviewer, and this post is just a comical jab at praise for a show he considers mediocre/unoriginal at best.