ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept.
Episode 6

by Anne Lauenroth,

How would you rate episode 6 of
ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept. ?

In a show that draws all of its suspense from the uncertainty of who knows what and shares what with whom to what purpose, one thing's becoming very clear: Jean and Lotta's royal heritage. Given the German naming scheme, it's likely to be on their mother's side. This is further substantiated by Prince Schwan's insistence on entering the royal gallery to hang his portrait (next to the picture of a woman whose face gets deliberately withheld from the camera), the fact that this gallery is apparently a place of reflection for the king (in front of the same woman's picture), and the commentary on a family tragedy occurring 33 years ago (which ended up prohibiting royal women and children from leaving Dōwā).

Apparently, Schnee either ran away with a commoner named Otus, had an illegitimate child, or both. Schwan knows at least some of this, and so does Grossular, who helped cover up the train accident that killed Schnee and Karl by having his district assume responsibility to prevent outside parties from digging deeper. Whether he did this to cover up the accident's cause or protect the identity of its victims is unknown, but I'm hoping for the latter, as the truth will determine his status as either a good or bad guy. Jean and Lotta's living arrangements clearly serve the purpose of keeping them safe or under surveillance, just like the constant rejection of Jean's transfer requests. Mauve has been banned from investigating the coup to prevent her from uncovering the truth behind Jean's lineage, and Jean looks more and more like he really doesn't have a clue, given the inner monologue we get from him on this week's visit to Hare district.

It's about time for the big in-show reveal to put all this intricate buildup to some dramatic use, and based on next week's preview, this will hopefully happen when Jean visits Dōwā, where he just might find his way into the gallery or run into the prince under less amicable circumstances than last time.

While this episode wasn't as rich in wonderful personal moments as last week's, Jean and Grossular's conversation under the growing shadows of the setting sun was lit almost like a duel, despite Jean's apparent naïveté. If it weren't for the rather innocent thoughts we get from him later on in the episode, I'd have severe doubts about the extent of his truthfulness. The visit to Hare had more interesting things going for it. By reputation and assumption alone, Jean has risen to such a position of importance that even on the island of Hare, branch personnel is beginning to treat him differently – and he's finally taking baby steps to use this treatment in his favor. It's a bit unnerving that we don't get to witness the fruits of his labor. Whether a coup happens will depend on the royal family, says Mauve, hinting at Jean's role without knowing it yet. Meanwhile, Jean is waiting at their favorite bakery, buying more bread than he could possibly eat by himself.

While the backgrounds are as beautiful as usual, a few static conversations showed signs of the animation struggling this week. ACCA's soundtrack is always excellent, with the playful party-planning tune at the office being a particular highlight. Lotta's inclusion in the conversation through editing was sweet, but the sweetest scene yet again goes to Nino and Jean, falling asleep in the living room after having too much to drink. Their difference in sleeping positions – Jean curled up under a blanket with Nino sitting upright, like he only abandoned his job as bodyguard for a second to rest his eyes – tells us so much about their relationship in a single shot.

Rating: B

ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept. is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.

Anne is a translator and fiction addict who writes about anime at Floating Words.

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