Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? III Episode 8 – An Enemy of Humanity

It’s Friday!!! YAY. I have big huge weekend plans of playing Dragon Quest in my jammies and maybe making pancakes for dinner with vodka. It’s pure genius, I know. Usually, I wouldn’t tut my own horn like this but some brilliance is just too intense to deny!

Now, the world is still a mess, arguably a bigger mess than ever, but for some reason, I am starting to see… well the light at the end of the tunnel is an overstatement. It’s more like I can sort of tell which direction we should go in to maybe eventually see that light. And as bleak as it might sound, it’s actually a huge improvement.

Anyways, Crow how are you? Any big weekend plans?

Pancakes with vodka sounds like a great combination. I’m rather fond of Russian Standard, though I feel little unpatriotic saying that…

Not sure if we’re seeing light or the burning of the last controls as the democracy falls to a cult of personality. But you started the post in a positive way, so let go with that! This weekend, I hope to get some more work done on the novels I’m plotting. Sometimes, I wonder if writing beats is just my way of avoiding the actual prose… 

I’ll be in light type this week!

I will say right off the bat, if you guys were hoping for a short read, you are most likely in luck. Now Crow is a sweet sensitive soul with a huge kind heart so I’m sure he will have a lot to say about how devastating and heart-wrenching some of the scenes were this week. I will leave him to it, he is much better than me at that.

I thought that this episode was a waste of time. Oh, there’s going to be spoilers. 

Oh, tell them they’ll be spoilers after you dropped the biggest one! Maybe we should reverse the order of those last two sentences.

Just kidding. To be frank, I struggled with this one. We got to see Tiona (my favorite) and Tione her sister, and that’s almost guaranteed to brighten my day. But… Well, you go first.

It started out well enough. I really loved Bell’s bluff that it was his kill. That was smart and frankly, I didn’t think Bell had it in him. I also liked the introduction of the minotaur as it ties us back to the myth. However, I felt it was too bad that we axed Dix. Not that he didn’t deserve it but he was a decent and useful antagonist and his simple presence brought up a lot of interesting conflicts that probably won’t get explored now.

Bell’s the protagonist. He should have gotten the kill. Even if he had to use Certified Plot Armor (I’m sure Eina could have rustled some up for him), I would have preferred that. As it was, it almost felt like the writers hugely built up this powerful, utterly hateable villain, put him against our favorite wide-eyed protagonist, and then “Splat! LOL JK!”

I mentioned before that I’m writing the beats for a novel. One of the points of that exercise is to make sure the plot works. The parts have to connect. If I present a conflict and build anticipation, it’s on me as a writer to deliver. If I don’t, I let my readers down.

Also, those were the last things I liked about the episode. Sounds dramatic! I’m not saying it was horrible or anything, just that I didn’t like it at all.

I have one thing I liked! It’s actually my favorite moment of the this season so far! But please, continue. I like the roll you’re on.

Since season 1, “humans” (they keep calling them that even though it’s assorted humanoids) other than the main characters have been presented as not very likeable, even as downright villains. So watching the poor minotaur get attacked from all sides was unpleasant for me. I just wanted that entire sequence to be over. 

On the bright side, Asterius (the Minotaur) slapped Bete and Tione aside like they were nothing. We’ve seen them in a lot of fights, and I don’t recall ever seeing them crushed like that. Heck, Asterius minus an arm still fought Ais to a standstill.

Still, I had a similar sense as you. The fight wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t necessary not only because I really didn’t like to see Asterius attacked like that, but also because it wasn’t in the plot’s main line. Asterius isn’t the protagonist. Bell is. Or maybe Lili. I’d accept Lili, too. But not Asterius.

But then it was an extended scene of Wiene being frantic, terrified and in pain. Followed by way more suffering…

I’m not sure what the point of this was. It doesn’t really teach us anything new. It doesn’t make us root for one side over the other. The humans have monsters rampaging through their city very much looking like they are about to kill everyone in sight and they defend themselves. The monsters have been presented as likeable so seeing them get hurt is really no fun. The status quo of Human vs Monster and the lack of understanding on both sides has been established since season 1. It also didn’t give any growth to the characters, they are all the same as they have always been

So why go through all this in a series that is primarily action comedy?

If the goal was to advance the theme of pointless pain, I’d suggest 2020’s not the right time. But again, just as you said, all of the points this scene drove home are already established. If the scene had been tweaked just slightly, so that the humans didn’t attack but threatened to attack just to herd Wiene towards the arena, I could have bought that. But as it was, I saw it pretty much the same way you did.

Now maybe because I was not into the (melo)drama or maybe because part of me just knew how it would turn out, I never really expected any lasting damage to the good guys. At least the main ones. I think if Lyd had died it would have really hit me. Because Lyd could stay dead and it has all these potential implications for the future of Xenos. But innocent cute girl Wiene.. 

So yeah, Weine doesn’t stay dead. Everyone is tired. There are a lot of injuries. The bad guys are dead. There is a TON of collateral structural damage. Not sure who will pay for it or if any innocent bystanders were caught in the rubble. I’m kidding, this show wouldn’t do something like that. 

Ultimately, I think I could have just skipped the episode completely and not really lost track of the narrative. The only big change was Dix’s death in the first few minutes. So to me, I feel like the show made me sad just for kicks. And that’s not my thing. Especially not after a long week.

Even the music was (melo)dramatic… Say, you should really trademark that. It’d make a great name for a power rock ballad band. Anyway, even with the (melo)dramatic music, Wiene’s faux death just didn’t work. Her real death would have given the scene a real dramatic punch. As it was, it felt like another “Oh, look, beloved character is dead. Not really! LOL JK.”

And actually, I’d glad it didn’t sit well with you, because I was secretly afraid my cynical side had gotten the upper hand again. The last time that happened I wrote a post about Pink Floyd and Listeners. That was hard for everyone.

In general, this season of IIWTTTPUGIAD III has been a rather fun watch. But this wasn’t the episode for me. 

Oh! Can I mention my favorite scene? It’s after the credits, when Eina confronts Bell and asks if the rumors of him doing something foolish were true. He looked at her and said yes. She slapped him. Hard. Why? Because of all the people on the planet, Eina is the one who would get it. Hestia would go along because she loves Bell. Lili would try to talk him out of it. But Eina would listen and Eina would have understood.

Bell owed her that. In the end, I think he finally understood.

Other than that…

Ha, I knew it. I knew that would be your favourite scene. And honestly, it was a good scene. A tiny bit of respite right at the end there. 

Oh well, they can’t all be winners. Here’s hoping next week will be a bit more fun. I mean it pretty much has to be. 

Irina

I'm much nicer than I seem, we should be friends!

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4 Responses

  1. Dawnstorm says:

    I… missed the post credits scene!

    Actually, I liked this episode more than some of the ones that came before. I was interested in how the all the familiae reacted to the situation. I didn’t mind the minotaur fight at all; that’s what battle’s like. If you bring an axe to a fight you can’t complain if you lose an arm. This is sort of different from the minotaur fight in season one, which was presented as Bell’s triumph rather than the ugly violence it was. I thought he delved into his dark side back then, but the story didn’t go there.

    Dix being axed (literally) by the minotaur is basically a plot transition, we get the new focus getting rid of the old focus, and he’s been foreshadowed as the guy who goes down the depth alone to train (I’m fairly sure that’s him, otherewise there’s someone even stronger somewhere).

    I watched that episode right after replying to the top 5 disliked anime tropes, and then this episode reminds me that, if you don’t want people to die, don’t kill them off. Maybe there’s something to Fels’ spell that will matter, but frankly I doubt it.

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