Isekai Quartet 2
by Theron Martin,
How would you rate episode 12 of
Isekai Quartet 2 ?
The big running joke throughout most of the episode is that Ram turns out to be a phenomenally bad choice for playing the titular role of Cinderella, as she either can't or won't divorce her normal attitude from the role she is playing. That results in a much ruder and lazier take on the heroine, and Darkness being one of the stepsisters plays into that all too well. The play shows some other colorful variations as well and an occasional good moment, including Aura rapidly twirling one of the Saga of Tanya the Evil guys (Vooren, I think?) and Demiurge trying to perform the play straight when everyone else is ad-libbing, but it comes up short on strongly landing jokes. Of course, even if there had been great jokes they would have been outshone by the play's last scene: Ram (as Cinderella) and Rem (as the prince) kissing. Given how popular Re:Zero's twin oni are, that is the shot that is going to have fans raving for a long time to come.
The episode also gives about equal time to the fight against The Destroyer and uses some clever cutaways to compare the events going on in the play to the events in the battle. The most significant aspect of the battle is Albedo showing off her skills as a melee powerhouse; she's often been mentioned as one of the strongest denizens of Nazarick, but this is the first time (even including her source series!) that she has actually get to demonstrate her power in animation, and she tops it off with a clear Jojo reference in what she says while rapid-punching the Destroyer. Viktoriya flying with Filo was also neat, as was Emilia and Puck using rapid-fire ice shards to shoot down a barrage of missiles. Amazingly, Aqua not only proves useful but also gets to unleash the finishing blow.(1) Raphtalia also gets in on the action by using a technique to absorb and fire back the Destroyer's energy attack. I am having trouble placing where that comes from, however; perhaps after the end of the initial anime series? One scene might also be a take-off on the Shining Finger Sword attack from Mobile Fighter G Gundam according to commentary I have seen elsewhere, though I find that to be a bit more of a stretch.
And so both tasks are simultaneously completed but to no avail, as nothing changes. At least the double fronts allowed nearly all of the main casts of all five series to be involved to some degree. The Death Knight's behavior in the closer is worth watching, but the big news comes at the end: more Isekai Quartet will be made! Even if this season wasn't quite as sharp, it still has a good thing going, and I will definitely be back for more.
1 – The translucent pink ribbon which appears around Aqua is her divine relic, which only appears when she uses her most powerful magic.
Isekai Quartet 2 is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.
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