Fate/Zero Episode 16

Holy crap…Kiritsugu went into assassin mode this week like crazy. Taking out Lancer so coldly, then having Maiya kill Kayneth and Sola even after putting a curse on himself that stopped him from doing it. His actions are so dirty…it’s totally opposite of Saber. I find it hard to hate his character, though. Maybe it’s because I know he’ll change by the end of the series. More importantly, Iris collapsed! What happened? Why did she hide it from Kiritsugu? Will this be the beginning of Kiritsugu’s redemption? Another point…Kayneth shot that dude in charge of the Grail War, but they didn’t really touch on it more past that. Will Kirei be able to take advantage of this? He seemed…well, to be honest, he sounded like the robot going “feelings? What are these?”

This episode…I have to say it was random at the beginning. Sola suddenly getting her arm cut off and Kayneth shooting the judge. Just came out of nowhere. Still, it was an interesting episode with that debate between Saber and Kiritsugu. Lancer’s story was such a tragic one. He remained so loyal and chivalrous, but even his Master was suspicious of him near the end. Then he’s betrayed and destroyed by Kiritsugu. I recently watched Unlimited Blade Works, and I was surprised to see Lancer die the way he did…so familiar. I’m hoping next week’s episode continues on with the action…it’s getting pretty crazy in this war. By the “goodbye, father” line from the preview, I wonder if Tokiomi will finally bite the dust next week. Kiritsugu’s “do evil to stop evil” line is familiar…what do you think of it? I believe that sometimes it is necessary, but I wonder how others feel.

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Top Opening Songs of Spring Season 2012

Alright, so this is basically a list of what I feel are the top 5 songs from this season’s lineup. Purely my opinion…you don’t have to agree, just throwing it out there. Musical taste is a tricky thing. I’ve done the best I can to explain why I like the songs, but sometimes it’s just not that easy. Not sure how long these links will last…sure they’ll all eventually be taken down. I’m looking at these songs purely for music…there’s no influence from the actual video of the opening. Let me know if you want me to try more posts like this.

 

5. “dots and lines” by You Hitoto feat. Mummy-D from Zetman

First off, we have the Zetman opening. If you look at it, the song seems very off for the type of show Zetman is. You’d expect something more heavy. But as for the song itself, I liked it a lot. The tune is very catchy and none of the voices sound bad. It’s very consistent and it does a good job of moving itself forward.

 

4. “Feel So Moon” by Unicorn from Uchuu Kyoudai/Space Brothers

Another song where I kinda have to ignore what’s going on in the animation…random rainbows are random. But the song itself sounds really cool. It has a really good rhythm despite how light it is. If I had to point out a problem, though, I’d have to say that the ending sounded a bit weird to me. It sounds like the song is ascending towards some sort of big finish, but it doesn’t really go anywhere. But the intro to the song is amazing…

 

3. “Tsurezure Monochrome” by Fujifabric from Tsuritama

I don’t know what instrument is playing that tune in the background, but I love it. The guitar and the drums add to it very nicely too. The singer also doesn’t try to push himself too far, even though the song sounds like there are parts where he could. I’m not completely sure if this is the official opening theme for the show because they showed scenes from the episode in the background, but I’d be happy if it was.

 

2. “Chase the world” by May’n from Accel World

Probably one of the closest songs you’ll get to Jrock in this season. No matter what I think of the show, this song still sounds great (wait…I feel like I’ve said this before with a Sunrise show). It’s very fast-paced, and May’n does the vocals well. The song brings the music strong from the very beginning and keeps it up. The whole song feels like it blazes by in an instant, but it’s a normal-length song.

 

1. “To the Beginning” by Kalafina from Fate/Zero

Was it ever even a question? Kalafina, drawing the talents of the wonderful composer Yuki Kajiura, never fails to impress me. The whole song seems to…flow. Not sure how to put it. The intro sounds great and the song builds up so nicely. The violin is definitely a nice touch too. I dunno why people think that oath sign was so much better…I’d have a hard time choosing.

 

Honorable Mention:

“Borderland” by Mami Kawada from Jormungand

“CHOIR JAIL” by Konomi Suzuki from Tasogare Otome x Amnesia

“Now or Never” by Nano from Phi Brain Season 2

 

Next up, we have some openings that didn’t quite make it on the list, but were pretty close. They deserve to be singled out from the ones I didn’t like:

Sakamichi no Apollon

Sankarea

 

Finally, we have the songs that just didn’t make the list. These are here for the simple reason that I want you to know which songs I was listening to when I made these decisions (no particular order):

Natsuiro Kiseki

Acchi Kocchi

Shining Hearts

Upotte

Hiiro no Kakera

Haiyore! Nyaruko-san

Kore wa Zombie Desu Ka of the Dead

Saki Achiga-Hen

Medaka Box

Fate/Zero Episode 15

The battle rages on to its inevitable conclusion this week. It looked like Berserker was able to destroy Gilgamesh’s weird flying ship, but he ended up getting double-teamed by Lancer and Gilgamesh. Lancer was pretty cool this week…he sacrifices his lance to help Saber (I was kinda expecting him to kill himself…didn’t realize destroying the lance would work). He also just teleported to Berserker and took him out in a matter of seconds (something Gilgamesh failed to do). Excalibur also comes out in all of its shining glory (were the light particles everywhere really necessary?).

The days for Berserker and Kariya are looking pretty numbered. Although Kirei did something to Kariya…did he heal him? I wouldn’t be surprised if Kariya weakens Tokiomi enough for Kirei to finish him. Without his lance, Lancer’s days are looking numbered too. In fact, the preview suggests that he may go down next week. We’ll have to see. Finally Caster went down…was getting tired of him and his giant tentacle monster. I also like Kiritsugu’s role as the man with the plan…makes him seem so much more epic.

Fate/Zero Episode 14

After a long wait, Fate/Zero is finally back! Just a reminder of what was going on, everyone was facing off against Caster in his demonic form. Still, Berserker steals the show, though, with his incredibly epic dogfight against Gilgamesh (still the show’s most annoying pretty boy). When Berserker intercepted the jet, my mind thought “why would Berserker be helping Caster?”, then I immediately remembered Berserker’s ability to turn anything into his Noble Phantasm…it was so awesome.

I thought Tokiomi’s conversation with Kariya was interesting too. Kinda randomly stopped the action to throw it in. Wonder if Kariya will kill Tokiomi or if he’ll die trying and weaken him enough for Kirei to finish it (I think he was there too in the shadows). I was also annoyed at how Saber and Rider together couldn’t beat Caster, but then they reminded me about the thing with Saber’s arm from her fight with Lancer. Kiritsugu stays the boss that he is, randomly shooting Ryuunosuke from the sidelines. The action is back…hopefully it sticks around.

I had heard the opening song quite a few times before the show started because someone uploaded it after it was played on a radio station. I thought it was awesome then and my opinion still hasn’t changed. It just has a way of sounding so dramatic while still not sounding overbearing. The ending theme sounds good too, but it doesn’t quite have the same impact. Next week, will we finally have the death of our first Servant? The first Master finally died, after all…As long as they don’t combine all of their Noble Phantasms into a Megazord, we should be fine.

Fate/Zero Final Episode

This post will be fairly short because I’m in a bit of a rush. So I was hoping everything in the past few episodes was going to build up to some epic fight at the end of the first half, but I guess I was disappointed. In the end, this episode ends up to be mostly talking as well.

Ryuunosuke and Caster have a crazy-off and Rider talks with Waver who still has his inferiority complex. In the end, Caster summons his ultimate ability and Saber, Rider, and Lancer gather in a temporary truce to battle him.

So this sets up the next season with a big fight to start off, but it makes this season very disappointing. I guess I’m anticipating the next season more now, but I was hoping for at least some decent action to finish it off. Still, I enjoy this series and hope to cover it again when it starts up again. Probably won’t be a formal review until the second season finishes. Persona 4 will probably be on Monday because I’m going to be out.

Fate/Zero Episode 12

So, Maiya suspects that Assassin is truly dead this time, and Tokiomi seems to suggest similarly. Kiritsugu ponders over the events of the Grail, concluding that Kirei’s actions only make sense if he were targeting Kiritsugu, so he would have to know Kiritsugu is the true master of Saber.

Meanwhile, Saber and Irisviel are relocated to a new base of operations (I wonder if it’s the same house Shirou had…that storehouse looks kinda familiar). Saber notices that Iris is acting strange, and she reveals that she barely has any strength left.

What is this pose?
Gilgamesh continues to talk with Kirei, revealing to him the interest he has placed in Berserker and Kariya, and the Command Seals reappear on Kirei’s hand as they are talking. I’m sure we know what this means.

So I hate to say it, but this episode sets Iris up to die, possibly even next week. Also, not that much action this week again. This is probably a sort of “calm before the storm” setup that will allow for an action-packed climax next week (at least, I’m hoping). So…how many Servants will be taken out next week? Anyone wanna venture a guess?

Fate/Zero Episode 11

So for some reason, Persona 4 is late and I really don’t feel like watching a stream, so that will come later. This week’s episode starts off with Rider dramatically entering the Einzbern Castle to…party. Gilgamesh also shows up, being invited by Rider as well. Each of them talks about their specific intentions with the Grail.

Rider ends up berating Saber for her idealistic approach to being king, saying that she is not a true leader. They are interrupted, though, by the arrival of Assassin (and a lot of them). Rider then shows off his abilities, creating a Reality Marble, a mental image materialized into the real world, of a desert.

Rider then calls forth his entire army, revealing it to be his ultimate Noble Phantasm, which is similar in form to Assassin, many Servants being one. Face with these overwhelming numbers, the Assassins just kinda…die.

Rider continues to be the greatest character ever (any Gilgamesh continues to be an obnoxious pretty boy), bringing in the action in this relatively mellow episode. Unfortunately, since he’s revealed his best Noble Phantasm first, I have to assume that he will be among the first to die. Weird that they decided to devote this episode so much to conversation when everything seemed so much more intense before. I’m also not really sure which side to take in the end. Which vision of being king do you agree with, Rider’s or Saber’s? Which kind of goal would be closer to your own? We’re getting pretty close to the end of the first season, so the deaths should probably start ramping up soon. Given what we’ve seen so far, I don’t think Assassin would go down so easily.

Fate/Zero Episode 10

The return of Chibi Rin! There’s no stronger way to start an episode. The first part of this episode takes a step back to before Rin is sent away by Tokiomi. She’s upset about her father’s decision, but her father gives her a gift to make her feel better. Also, we find out that one of Rin’s friends went missing when Caster attacked Saber in the earlier episode.

Rin goes out to find her by herself and stumbles upon Ryuunosuke leading a bunch of kids somewhere. Rin ends up finding her friend, but she is unresponsive and Rin is caught by Ryuunosuke. He tries to use the bracelet that he used to hypnotize the other kids on Rin, but she is able to destroy it with her own prana, releasing everyone.

One of Caster’s tentacle monsters tries to attack Rin, but she is saved by Kariya (presumably because of his relationship with Sakura). Kariya then explains his situation to Rin’s mother, assuring her that Sakura is okay.

At first glance, this week’s episode looked like a step back into the calmer life of Chibi Rin, but it quickly ramps the action and the tension right back up again. I like that this series doesn’t have those sort-of filler episodes where the main characters are just messing around, like a beach scene or something like that. The tension is there and it stays there.

So, Kariya reveals that he isn’t completely insane…although we can’t be sure of his mental state. I was pretty impressed with Rin beating Ryuunosuke when I saw it. However, correct me if I’m wrong, but I get the impression that Ryuunosuke actually knows no magic and was only borrowing the power from Caster. Still, beating Caster’s bracelet is pretty impressive to say the least.

Based on the emblems in the preview, it’s possible the three kings are gonna duke it out next week. Should definitely be a sight to see. Why does this show have to take a break in the winter? I’m so upset.

Fate/Zero Episode 9

Crazy Eyes!!
Alright, this week’s episode starts off with Kayneth having a dream about Lancer’s past. He awakes to find that Sola has restrained him on a hospital bed. She reveals that his magic circuits have been destroyed, and he can never use magic again. Sola asks Kayneth to give her the Command Seals, but he refuses, and she responds by torturing him.

Meanwhile, Saber asks Iris to talk to Kiritsugu about pursuing Caster to prevent further harming of innocents. However, Kiritsugu is intent on killing Kayneth. Sola shows Lancer the Command Seals, trying to convince him that Kayneth has given up on the Grail Wars, but Lancer refuses to pledge his loyalty to her.

Sola is finally able to convince Lancer by saying that she only seeks the Grail to help heal Kayneth (pretty sure she’s lying). Meanwhile, Waver uses alchemy to follow the trail of Caster. When they reach Caster’s lair, Rider tries to warn Waver not to examine it any closer, but Waver insists and sees the grotesque carnage left by Caster.

The two are interrupted by the arrival of multiple Assassins, and they realize that Assassin’s death was faked. Rider takes one out, but the others return to the shadows, so the two leave.

Rider and Waver are such an entertaining combination! Also, Sola is crazy! Not much Iris this week if that’s what you were hoping for, but I’m glad that Rider made his appearance. I like that Lancer wasn’t just like “Yes, Master” when Sola asked him to serve her, but actually showed some loyalty. Great episode as always and definitely keep looking forward to more!

Fate/Zero Episode 8

Sorry for how late this post is. I’ve been at the convention center for MLG (google if you don’t know what that is) since 9 am. Taking a step away from Kiritsugu in the castle, Iris senses the arrival of another Master, Kirei. Rather than running, Iris suggests that they fight him (such a great character).

Meanwhile, Kiritsugu shoots his mega bullet, which manages to hit Kayneth, allowing him to escape. Kirei arrives, and easily takes out Maiya. However, Iris reveals that she knows an offensive form of magic, using it to restrain Kirei, although he quickly escapes. Also, Saber uses Excalibur to create a path for Lancer to pierce Caster’s tome, breaking his Noble Phantasm.

It’s revealed that Kiritsugu’s mega bullets are actually made from himself, and they act to cause magic circuits to go haywire, especially dangerous against a powerful magus like Kayneth. Unfortunately, Lancer arrives before he is able to finish Kayneth off and the two escape.

Kirei ends up stabbing Iris before running off before Saber arrives. Before anyone freaks out, Iris is not dead! Actually, Iris has Avalon, which heals her wounds, and she heals Maiya.

First off, it was definitely great to watch both Kiritsugu and Kirei in battle. Since these two are the central characters in this show, I’m glad that they are each epic enough to handle their importance. I’m also glad that Iris didn’t die…although I predict that she has to die. Rider and Berserker need to come back into the show…I miss them.