Fate/Zero – 09 Review

Poor Lancer. T^T

Episode 09 – Master and Servant

This was another good episode for Fate/Zero. Naturally, the show is starting to display a pattern.

After a huge important battle that hints at pushing the plot forward, the show takes a break from the action to evaluate all the other pairings and the outcome of that particular “group meeting” (For some reason, they always seem to appear as a group to battle rather than a simple one on one).

I am not sure if this is due to the huge amount of main characters, but whatever the reason is, it is starting to look like all the important battles that would push the plot progress of the Holy Grail War will be taking place in the second season whilst this first season merely sets up the stage, and hopefully finishes the chase after Caster.

Review

This episode had it’s fair share of sentimental moments that had left me feeling moved (none like the balcony breakdown of Kiri a few episodes back). Instead of being shocked by the out-of-character sentimentality of things, the series has manage to develop the characters in such a way that we are able to appreciate all these new emotional facades. The way Lancer’s past weighs on him really did make me want to cry for the boy. To add to that, Rider’s brotherly nature to look out for Waver had left me feeling touched by such an unconventional, yet caring, relationship.

The Cursed Mole

(It seems like Kayneth’s fixation on the mole a few episodes back was due to his worry over his wife faithfulness to him, and this episode just proved that it was well justified )

The episode started off by diving straight into Lancer’s past. I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t shocked by the suddenness of it all, but the follow-up had justified that scene well. It would have been a tad better if the episode had started off by having Kayneth trashing in the bed due to a bad dream before diving into Lancer’s past. I have no idea how he is even able to see Lancer’s past in his dream, but I shall write it off as some magical connection between Master and Servant. I seems like this series is having trouble transitioning between episodes, if you recall, back after the warehouse battle scene, the episode following that had Saber and Iri in a car driving like mad people for no apparent reason.

Anyway, back onto the cursed mole. It is definitely nice to be able to see some of Lancer’s history and motivation for the war. If I hadn’t liked his character previously, I definitely love him now. The newly formed dynamics with Sola taking over Kayneth’s role is definitely a signal that things are going to change and all the mind games are definitely fun to watch. I am looking forward to seeing how this situation plays out, with Lancer recognizing Sola’s hidden agenda and him agreeing to help her out for the sake of Kayneth (or perhaps himself) despite his knowledge.

Speaking of Sola, boy does that woman have issues. I have to get this off my chest but, I don’t understand how some characters believe that they can convince others to do what they want when they make themselves sound so suspicious while talking. It was probably the directors wanting to hint at her craziness before fully revealing it, but I really didn’t like how suspicious she had sounded. It had gave everything away. Naturally, what she did didn’t work on Kayneth and she had to resort to torture.

I know that Sola is probably under the influence of the mole, but what’s with all the crazy people in this season’s anime? We have so many psychotic characters this season (i.e. Yuno etc- Mirai Nikki, Caster etc. – Fate/Zero, Hisoka – Hunter x Hunter, and I am sure there are more).

Sola had definitely taken on the role of being the manipulative and “pyscho” master whilst Lancer has resigned himself to being manipulated in order to achieve his own means (not sure if it can be considered manipulation when the victim actively knows what is going on), meanwhile, Kayneth is bedridden and magic-less. With this new hidden change, would that mean that this team may have the upperhand in the game? I am sure that Kiritsugu for one would be shock to see that Lancer has a new master.

Kiri and the Gang

I had thought that they had escaped from the mansion and had gone to a different location, but the new backdrop designs makes it seem like they are back in the mansion once again. (=_=?)

I just can’t find it in myself to like Kiritsugu. He had once again showed us his cold-hearted nature by asking if when Maiya would be ready to be used. She is a person for heaven’s sake. I understand that Kiri believes that sacrifices are needed in order to save others, but this really does raise the question of whether what he is doing can still be considered the “right” thing to do (whatever “right” is meant to be). As I had said last week, Kiri treats everyone apart from his previous loved ones (Iri and his kid) like a tool. I am not sure what Maiya’s deal is for sticking with such a guy, but I am sure we would find out soon enough. I doubt it is out of love… or is it?

The relationship between Kiri and Saber is definitely strained with Saber not feeling like she is able to communicate with Kiri and thus relying on Iri to pass on her message. Where on the other hand we have Kiri who is feeling betrayed by Saber, as Saber’s trustworthy nature might have caused all of them the war if Lancer had not stayed true to being a knight (or if Kayneth was lucid enough to command Lancer to kill Kiri). I can’t blame Kiri for feeling that way since I too had felt the same way last week when she had let Lancer go after Kayneth.

It has also become quite clear that Kiri is having a hard time deciding between being human and being a killer. On one hand, we get to see Kiri’s vulnerable side when he was worried about Iri, but on the other hand, this episode had showed us that Kiri is back to being cold-hearted and goal-focused when he had dismissed the children as not being part of the bigger picture. I would really like to see how this plays out and await the day Kiri gets a emotional breakdown from it.

Another character that is having a mental breakdown is Kiritsugu’s rival, Kirei. The end of the episode had clearly showed us that the seeds of doubt planted by Archer is starting to grow in Kirei’s mind, hopefully this situation would play out to become something by the end of the season and not drag itself into the next. Perhaps this is the start of a backstabbing plot?

Isn’t Brotherly Love Fantastic?

Rider and Waver are back on our screens! Rejoice my friends!

It feels like it has been awhile since we had seen these two doing their comedy act together.

It is nice to see that Rider has finally gotten his pants =D It is so funny how something so trivial could make such a big man so happy.

This episode finally shows us Waver using his brains to help Rider search for Caster. Although Waver has said that his experiment was due to him being weak, it was still nice to see him actively participate in the war instead of simply being dragged along by Rider. This pair is definitely the surprising perfect pair of the series – with Rider being the Brawn and Waver being the Brains.

It is always great to see the constant development of the relationship between these two. Rider had played the big brother role and his affectionate behaviour towards Waver has definitely increased with this episode showing how he looks out for Waver in the sewage by warning Waver not to look. It had also showed us Rider’s understanding of Waver’s personality. Even though Waver had persisted, the fact remains that Rider had his back. This is very different from Saber and Kiri’s relationship- with their lack of communication and distrust for one another.

I wonder if this pair is the strongest simply because of their understanding of one another. If the command seals can determine the war, then would the lack of need for them represent a positive standing in the war? Of course, this is assuming that the seals only forces a servant to obey and nothing else.

Overall

 

This episode had it’s fair share of sentimental moments and shows us the start of a shift in the balance amongst the various pairs. Although we have little followup to Caster’s exit in the last episode and absolute silence from the Berserker pair, the episode was still entertaining to watch with more character development happening. I can’t wait for when the show finally gets back to the Holy Grail War. At the very least, the dialogue in this series refrains itself from becoming to dry through the use of good animation and nice background music (which is something all anime should have).

Episode Rating: 7.5/10 – I am sure many of us would love to see more action and less talking, but I am sure the show will get there sooner or later. For now, I am just going to enjoy this development in the relationships of the participants.

-ra is lazing around after having a filling lunch.

Fate/Zero Question of the Week:

With 4 episodes remaining in the series, what do you expect to have happened by the end of the season?

  • A resolution to the Caster issue
  • Have Kirei break away from his mommy – Tohsaka

At the rate the show is progressing, I wouldn’t hold my breath for too much more. =P

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About Saranaufogus

An Anime fan who can't seem to keep her thoughts to herself. Find me on: Instagram | Twitter

Posted on November 27, 2011, in Anime, Fate/Zero, Reviews and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 23 Comments.

  1. Great writing. Very nice post today thanks. You have an excellent blog here. Thanks again for sharing.

    Earn a real living writing, blogging, or commenting. Change your life today!

    – Writers Wanted –

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  2. Fearless prediction:

    Both Caster & Lancer will be eliminated first.

    I suspect Kirei will not betray Tokiomi this soon, and may not until he is down to his last assassin.

    (haven’t read the novels or spoiled myself yet, amazingly enough) 😀

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    • “Both Caster & Lancer will be eliminated first.”

      NOOOO!!!! Lancer!!! T^T My heart bleeds for you. (Seems like I have been struck by the mysterious curse of the mole. =P Oh no, I might be psychotic)

      “I suspect Kirei will not betray Tokiomi this soon, and may not until he is down to his last assassin. ”

      How many assassins does he have anyway. =P Such an unfair world.

      “(haven’t read the novels or spoiled myself yet, amazingly enough) 😀 ”

      Bravo! I applaud you… don’t spoil yourself and enjoy the ride. You can read the novel once it is done. =P

      Like

  3. Aye, I complained on another blog that it was Kayneth’s fault that he did not prepare his wife Sola adequately. Kayneth is a master mage and he must have known all about Lancer’s curse. Plus Kayneth involved Sola in this war, having her serve as back up master or something. It’s true that he’s arrogant to a fault, but he’s not irrational. Or is he?

    Sorry about Lancer. He’s your favorite?

    Mine is BERSERKER 😀

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    • Its interesting how leaving out one small detail changes so many peoples perceptions isnt it? Kayneth is really not to blame for what sola choose to do.

      From what i have seen, most people are assuming that sola is only betraying kayneth because she has been charmed by his mole, and thus is not really responsible for her actions, but what the novel mentions, and that the anime has left out entirely is that sola is a trained mage who can resist charms.

      She may not be as strong as kayneth, with nothing as strong as his mercury, but she still has ability and has been well trained. The point is, that as a trained mage, Sola is fully capable of resisting the effect of Lancers mole. Female mages can resist its power, such as how Irir wasn’t effected when Saber fought Lancer(though in Iri’s case its more that she has resistance because she is a homunculus then a mage, but still). The fact that she is still acting love struck, shows that she willingly choose to give in to the charms power, and is therefore completely responsible for her actions.

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      • I haven’t read the novel (no spoilers plz k thx) but from watching the anime, its clear that Sola was charmed to some degree. It even shows her having the same charmed eyes as Lancer’s previous lover. Her having super duper anti-charm powers seems like a contrived coincidence with team Kayneth summon a servant who just happened to have a cursed mole which just happened to only affect women. Additionally, the detail of her choosing Lancer rather than being charmed is pointless because the viewer already knows about her true colors just the way she was willing to amputate her husband’s arm just to get his command spells.

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    • @zammael

      “Sorry about Lancer. He’s your favorite?”

      Well, he had started out being just another cool character but he is now my favourite. =D And there’s nothing to be sorry about. I honestly wanted to say that the Lancer arc would end as well, but the new change in the Master Servant r/s might be hinting at otherwise. =)

      “Aye, I complained on another blog that it was Kayneth’s fault that he did not prepare his wife Sola adequately.”

      Lol!!

      Well, you are right, he should have warned Sola or something.

      “It’s true that he’s arrogant to a fault, but he’s not irrational. Or is he?”

      Honestly, I don’t see him as being all that intelligent. =P He is definitely arrogant but I think it is possible he had simply overlooked that fact being a real issue until it had actually happened.

      @takashid

      Damn, she can resist charms? Well, she did seem to be more psychotic than a normal “merely charmed” person. It is as you said, it is interesting how a detail can change the way things look. =_=” the production team should take care when translating the material. =P

      “The fact that she is still acting love struck, shows that she willingly choose to give in to the charms power, and is therefore completely responsible for her actions.”

      Well, I don’t blame Sola, after all, with a husband like Kayneth, can you really blame her for switching sides? 😄

      Like

  4. As or Kayneth’s dream, it is as you suspect. The Master dreams of the past of his Servant due to their connection. This also happened to Shirou in F/SN.
    Concerning Sola-Ui, she knows full well of the power of Diarmuid’s mole but she chose to be enchanted, probably because she doesn’t like her fiancee.

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    • “This also happened to Shirou in F/SN.”

      I remember that part vaguely but I am not sure if it was really explained as a proper fact of how that is related. I mean, Saber was living off Shirou for his powers at that point if I remember correctly, whereas for Kayneth, the magic connection is with Sola.

      Was it ever explained how the connection between the servants and masters are related to the dreams?

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      • “Was it ever explained how the connection between the servants and masters are related to the dreams?”

        Its just something that can happen through their connection with the mana transfers and command seals between master and servant. It doesn’t always happen to every master/servant team, and the chances of the master seeing there servants past are usually small. I’m actually disappointed that the anime hasn’t shown it yet, but one other master beside kayneth has started having dreams of their servants past. Looking forward to seeing it soon.

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      • “Its just something that can happen through their connection with the mana transfers and command seals between master and servant.”

        I thought that the chances of it happening would be higher if they had both command seals and were the source of the mana. But I guess there are some unknown factors to how the connection works. =)

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  5. if the master order the servant to strip , would they do it?
    i think japanese are too maniac, they and their fetishism.
    this series remind me of some JAV porn i watch.
    nothing new is presented, its either maid, teacher or nurse..
    well, a schoolgirl at best but hey, its the same damn thing!~
    how is this series differs from any other series, or even
    from its own F/SN series?

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  6. I don’t know what is this bastardo talked about, since I don’t see school girl in this anime. >_> But I wan’t to tell him that no Master would do such wasteful thing, because they practically only has two commands available, the third command would revoke their status as Master.
    Masters CAN see their servants’ past.
    Shirou has seen how Saber drew her sword from a stone, accompanied by Merlin. How she battle. How she was betrayed and met her end.
    Rin has seen how Archer faithfully pursued his dream of becoming a superhero, but died pitifully in the end.
    Kirei will betray Tokiomi. But probably in season 2, when he has lost his band of Assassins and resorted to snatching Archer ownership. 🙂
    I predict this season one will end with Lancer’s death, followed by Kayneth and Sola’s death.
    Because jumping between plot is no good, no good.
    And, probably Ryuunosuke?
    We will see, Kiritsugu is a super dirty bastard.
    That’s why I assume Fate Zero as having no main character. 😀
    This is so different with FSN. Shirou put people’s safety over himself, sacrifice himself, and stick to his ideal of becoming superhero even though he realized the horrible end that awaits him. I prefer treating Unlimited Blade Works as real route :-), the way he’s blinded by love of Sakura in Heavel Feel route is soooo wrong.

    Oh yeah, at this pace, most likely we will have to wait a long time (season 2) to see more of Berserker’s fights and Rider’s reality marble.
    Daaaamn.

    Like

    • “I predict this season one will end with Lancer’s death, followed by Kayneth and Sola’s death.
      Because jumping between plot is no good, no good.”

      Haha, well, this show has it’s fair share of plot jumping as is. =D

      “And, probably Ryuunosuke?”

      I wonder whatever happened to him. He’s been silent for the last couple of eps. =P He is probably the most inactive master that “lets” his servant do whatever he likes.

      “Shirou put people’s safety over himself, sacrifice himself, and stick to his ideal of becoming superhero even though he realized the horrible end that awaits him. I prefer treating Unlimited Blade Works as real route 🙂 , the way he’s blinded by love of Sakura in Heavel Feel route is soooo wrong.”

      I use to like Shirou in FSN but he kinda became a tad too heroic for my liking with the whole righteous dialogue that he constantly spouts.

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  7. My was this a surprising episode, it did everything I hoped it would and more. For starters, I never thought I would feel sorry for Kayneth. Apart from being wrecked as a mage, as well as his pride, his wife is a psychotic bitch who never really loved him… The second surprise is me defending Kiritsugu of all people! I could be wrong but the way I saw it, he was casually referring to Maiya as a tool to cover up his concern that she was beaten to an inch of her life. As for the disregarding the children, its a dick move but he may have a point about them having bigger concerns. What really made Kiri shine to me, however, was him denouncing Saber for her profound stupidity in the previous episode. I was worried that they would gloss over this because Saber is the moral one therefor she must always be right. Irisveil now knows he is pissed but I wonder if Saber knows or if she feels guilty about it.

    I am pleased that rather than boring exposition as we’ve had in previous episodes we got good character development for everyone in Team Kayneth as well as Waver and Rider. The camaraderie between the latter pair is nothing new but Waver is actually proving himself to be a somewhat competent (if naive) mage. Despite there not being any notable battles, this episode was well spent.

    So, here’s the bad. Assassin. Only once were they used effectively (ironically just in being sacrificed) and after that they’ve proven to be both weak and incompetently used. Despite being the stealthy class, they are pretty shit awful at not being seen. Kiri learning their secret makes sense considering his analytical thought process but when Rider, a man 8 feet tall and blunt as a hammer, can spot your ambush, well… these guys are nothing but cannon fodder in my opinion now. What a waste of a well laid out plan.

    Some other trivial things, in the sub I was watching it said Rider killed two Assassins when it looked like he only killed one. The other is that once again the dead children were censored so we got another “take our word for it, its gruesome” scene. I can’t appreciate the horror from Waver’s expression alone. For all we know, he just didn’t like tennis shoes 😛

    As for where I think the story will go. I hope they resolve either the Caster or Lancer Story. I will be disappointed if there isn’t at least one large battle that ends in the defeat of one side. Also, for the preview to the next episode, did I hear both Kariya AND Ryuunosuke? YES!! Hopefully it won’t be filler with chibi Rin running around….

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    • “My was this a surprising episode, it did everything I hoped it would and more. For starters, I never thought I would feel sorry for Kayneth.”

      Same, I did kinda feel for Kayneth, that was until I remembered that he was such an pig. =P

      “I could be wrong but the way I saw it, he was casually referring to Maiya as a tool to cover up his concern that she was beaten to an inch of her life.”

      Lol, I simply took it at face value. One can’t expect too much out of a hazy eyed character. =P Isn’t being emotionless one of the characteristic associated with such a blank look in the eyes?

      “The other is that once again the dead children were censored so we got another “take our word for it, its gruesome” scene. I can’t appreciate the horror from Waver’s expression alone. For all we know, he just didn’t like tennis shoes :P”

      Well, he did get blood all over his face and blood covering the floor. I can’t wait to see those non-censored scenes when the Blue-Ray/DVD comes out. =D

      “YES!! Hopefully it won’t be filler with chibi Rin running around….”

      Lol! That would totally spoil the mood of the show, but that would give us a lot to complain about. =P

      Like

  8. “With 4 episodes remaining in the series, what do you expect to have happened by the end of the season?

    A resolution to the Caster issue
    Have Kirei break away from his mommy – Tohsaka”

    Neither of it. Although I wish Caster’s death immediately, next episode will focus on Rin(and probably Aoi/Kariya) and after that I heard bells ringing, which told me that after that the banquett of the Kings begins. Also, Kirei’s betrayal would be way too early, not as long as his father is the judge who supports Tokiomi.

    (Big fat SPOILER, except for FSN VN players): And because he somehow still has to attain Gilgamesh and Tokiomi has to meet Rin one last time(prologue). Also, from UBW VN players know that Tokiomi was killed by Kirei. This is way too fast. I expect Tokiomi to die at the end of the second half, his father Risei has to die, too because I didn’t see him in FSN.
    (SPOILER END)

    About the Command Spells: The strength of a Command Spell depends on how precise your command is. Tell the Servant to “protect you all the time through the war” and the command goes poof.

    The Command Spell can also be used to boost the actions of your Servant if both Master and Servant mutually agree. In FSN for example, Rin uses a Spell and forces Archer to listen to her and do what she says. While this command is way too general, (thanks to Rin’s talent and power)it is said that Archer either feels a weight on his shoulders or a bit stronger, depending on whether he disobeys Rin or wholeheartedly supports her, iirc.

    About Sola(@zammael): takashid pretty much said everything that needed to be said. She intentionally decreases her resistance to get affected by Lancer’s curse. Saying it’s all Kayneth’s fault is way too easy. It is as Lancer said in ep4. If you want to blame something, blame either his birth or the fact that “you” were born as a woman. Although I say, it’s Sola’s fault mostly. See how she nearly(or did she?) begins to cry when Lancer “rejected” her.

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    • @ the command seals:

      I do remember Fate Stay Night using the command seals in a slightly smarter manner than what we’ve seen so far in this series. Hopefully we would get to see some of that exploitation of rules in this series soon.

      Like

  9. [Spoiler]

    When this series started i thought that it will end at the end of the second battle royal – resulting at the death of caster. But seeing there is 4 ep to go… from this 4 the next is a not so welcomed Rins’s loliadventure sry Rin fans 🙂 So there is only 3 to go!!!

    This is why i think that the season will end with the “Banquet of the Kings” You guys will love it Saber will be trolled and bullied so hard 😛

    PS. All those who have been charmed by Lancer rejoice, for you may have the grace to enjoy his sight in the second season also. (3-4 episodes though) 🙂

    [End of spoiler]

    It’s still to early for Kirei to break off from his mommy 😉

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    • [Spoiler Below]

      “PS. All those who have been charmed by Lancer rejoice, for you may have the grace to enjoy his sight in the second season also. (3-4 episodes though) :)”

      Yay!!! But you should add a spoiler tag for that… *shall go change it now*

      Like

  10. FINALLY, another Lancer fan! Welcome to the fan-club. Have some complementary cookies and juice!

    By the way, the basics of the mole in his legends were this: It wasn’t from birth, but a gift from the goddess Morrigan (he considered it a curse). Any woman who lays upon it will be smitten and will do everything in her power to make him hers. It was also a tad bit inaccurate to show that he fell in love with Grainne right away, as it took months for him to finally (And truthfully fall in love with her after travelling with the girl for months and facing life and death situations together). It might also be interesting to know that Grianne knew some magic (Mostly hexes), and Fionn was considered a powerful mage warrior as well (With great strength, healing powers, and master of war). Infact, in the original story, Grainne put a Geis on Diarmuid, which is some sort of magic that compelled him to run away with her.

    I think this season will conclude with Caster’s death. I also think that maybe the Tohsakas will be involved. Maybe Rin will be kidnapped by Caster.

    Like

    • @Sandybell
      Great! That means the Berserker will be dispatched after him! 😀

      Like

    • @sandy:

      “FINALLY, another Lancer fan! Welcome to the fan-club. Have some complementary cookies and juice!”

      Yes! Free cookies and juice! (I’m a cheap person XP)

      I have seen your post on the mole so that helped with letting me know what to expect. ^^

      Well, I do hope that at the very least they would kill of Caster. I don’t want the series to drag on into a mass murder scene at the end of the second season. Would rather have a few die off slowly.

      @zammael:

      I can tell that you are super excited to see Berserker ^-^ Can’t wait to see how what your reaction would be when he finally comes on back on screen. =P

      Like

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