Sun 3 Feb 2013
It has been mentioned before that one of the weak points of Maoyuu Maou Yuusha is the fact that its dialogue is very obviously written for the sake of exposition. I definitely agree with Inushinde, and while I usually just ignore it and just let it happen, the beginning of this week’s episode felt very shallow. It comes down to a conversation between the merchant who ships himself with Maou talking to someone about the current events of the show and it basically comes across like this:
THIS WEEK ON MAOYUU, WAR IS STILL COMING, SOMETHING ABOUT COMPASSES, AND CHECK OUT ALL THIS SHIT ABOUT LOGISTICS AND MACROECONOMICS.
Listen, guys, it is A-OK to use dialogue for the sake of world building and exposition, but if it’s not any kind of subtle, you might as well be writing an encyclopedia. At least I got a chuckle from the merchant’s profound understanding of how fertilizer works:
From there, the episode touches on the discrimination and abuse that demons suffer in places where the humans have won out. It’s interesting seeing the ramifications of being on the losing side illustrated like this after Maou mentioned it to Yuusha in the first episode. It’s also nice to see this exposition handled with more finesse than just telegraphing the message, but maybe I was just taking it easy because it was a cute, demon girl talking. It’s understandable, therefore, that she assumes he’s only serving Maou because he lost to her since humans and demons don’t have a history of collaborating peacefully.
This whole bit reminded me of a Rider related recurring theme in Fate/Zero. Iskander is the King of Conquerors because he conquered people’s very souls without destroying or degrading them. He won them over to his side and respected them as his followers, regardless of their origins. While Maou is no where near as amazing of a character as Iskander, a Rider-esque philosophy is one of the lessons that Maou hope to teach the world as she tries end the war peacefully and prosperously.
And then Maou confesses that she’s the Demon King to Ms. Knight, who takes it like a champ (mostly because Yuusha already briefed her). You know, if I had anyone in my life who sounded like Sawashiro Miyuki, I would do anything to be friend them as well, so good on you, Maou. At this point, the episode clock struck romance-scene-o-clock and we are treated to a long awaited reunion of Maou and Yuusha (even though he’s been around without her knowledge).
Maou reacts violently to him showing up out of nowhere after such a long time, but anyone who has seen more than two episodes of a romantic anime knows this is proper procedure. The thing I like the most about this scene is that we see some character growth from Yuusha’s character. He’s been working to make Gate City, a place where demons don’t get shafted daily, but without just killing everyone. Wanting to benefit former enemies and considering alternatives to mass homicide? Sounds like character development to me, and in a medieval world, no less.
And then there’s a dance scene where the two almost kiss, but they are interrupted…by the music stopping? Come on, guys, you haven’t been together for a year, the clothes should be off by now. But noooo, Yuusha has to go off again. Whatever, Maoyuu, it’s not like that would have turned an otherwise ok episode into an amazing one or anything.