After all the drama about Lancer’s suffering, we get to see Rin as a child kick Ryuunosuke’s butt…
It’s been such a long time since we last seen Rin as she was only appeared briefly in the first episode. Oddly enough, she gets an arc of her own and her determination at a young age astounded me. The way she was able to track the kidnapper down with a “mana compass” that her father gave her and destroy the bracelet that Ryuunosuke wore is a big achievement. From there, she was able to save the other children from his control, including her friend. Although this was a satisfying experience, it looks unrealistic since she can’t possibly gain enough skill in using mana within a short period of time to defeat an adult. Compared to this, the light novel from what I heard was a bit more realistic as it shown her inability to save them. From the expansion of this arc, I felt that it was mostly done for Rin fanservice and nothing else, although Ryuunosuke is now severely crippled as a result of her actions, something that Weaver couldn’t do last time.
On the other hand, this episode isn’t completely devoid of development since Kariya shows up towards the end and rescues Rin. This development was interesting as he tells Aoi why he subjected himself to his father’s magical worms and reasons why he joined the war. Either way you look at it, his ending looks tragic as he is slowly deteriorating and Aoi knows he won’t survive once it’s done.
In the end, this episode was a mixed bag. Up until now, Fate/zero had many great episodes, perhaps better than what I watched in the four episodes of Fate/stay night. However, compared to the other episodes, this one just feels out-of-place and that the Grail War isn’t a place for a young child. Despite this, the execution was still stellar and it allows Rin to develop and become the character that we love in the main series. Not only that, Kariya saving her sets everything up for what lies ahead for him, Aoi and Tokiomi regarding the Grail War.
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