Luck & Logic
by Lauren Orsini,
How would you rate episode 8 of
Luck & Logic ?
Hero worship can be a dangerous thing. In this episode of Luck & Logic, Section Chief Veronica finally gets her own background story—and discovers that what she thought she knew about her mentor, Ash Paxton, was just a pleasant veneer over a much more sinister story. It's not only her misguided actions, but her Logicalists' teamwork to rescue her, which make this episode more relatable than most. It still has serious pacing issues, confusing story elements, and animation inconsistency, but for once I can say that Luck & Logic has heart.
Remember that guy Veronica came to see in the hospital basement? Apparently, that scene was setting us up for this episode, “Guilt or Innocence.” Veronica clearly loves her mentor “like a brother” (if you have any doubts about her continuing eligibility for Yoshichika's harem). When Ash is suddenly relocated to the Sapporo branch, Veronica doesn't think twice about tendering her resignation and pursuing him there.
It's all a little fishy but the reason, the Sapporo branch claims, is that they finally found Ash's Logic Cards. This may or may not be related to the fact that the last Foreigner Ash clashed with before becoming totally braindead, an ice belva, is on the loose. Veronica doesn't seem to see anything amiss, so she and Nemesis immediately don their adorable winter outfits to do battle against an ice belva on an electrical tower, resulting in some of the most inconsistent animation of the show. While Veronica and Nemesis are always splendidly drawn, the belva and the tower begin to get pretty rough and shaky around the edges.
Meanwhile, Veronica's boss has Yoshichika, Athena, Yukari, and Quetzie follow up to make sure nothing happens to her, and that's where the episode begins to fall apart. Events happen so quickly and confusingly that it's only after it's over and I'm piecing the scenes together in my mind that I sort of understand what happened. Our heroes fall into the base of the branch by chance and find a video proving Ash's guilt and the ice belva's role as a lab rat. Meanwhile the Sapporo branch chief, who clearly has no idea that this video is so easy to find, wants Veronica to kill the belva to rid the branch of all of that evidence. I think that's what happened, so let me know if you picked up a different interpretation. I still have no idea who sent the quadcopter drones, which are attacking the belva and Yoshichika indiscriminately.
The real heart comes at the end of the episode. After failing to save Ash or kill the belva, Veronica is ready to embrace her unhappy ending, but the rest of the branch won't let her. They all discuss the ways that they've been bad Logicalists who breach protocol, just like Veronica. (I cringe to think government money is paying for all this!) It's a surprisingly touching scene that, for once, doesn't get cliché because the excuses are all so personalized to each character. It's almost enough to make up for the weird pacing that has me too confused to know what really happened—and still stretch past the credits to pack more cryptic world-building setup in. One step forward, two steps back.
Luck & Logic is currently streaming on Funimation.
Lauren writes about anime and journalism at Otaku Journalist.
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