What They Say:
Ten years prior to the events of FATE/STAY NIGHT, the War of the Holy Grail is a contest in which seven magi summon seven Heroic Spirits to compete to obtain the power of the “Holy Grail,” which grants a miracle. After three inconclusive wars for the elusive Holy Grail, the Fourth War commences.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Fate/Zero almost felt like a different series at the start of this episode as it focused on a beach scene with characters that seemed unfamiliar. Which made sense as it went on as it deals with a young Kiritsugu at a time spent with Shirley, a young woman that he obviously has feelings for even if she keeps calling him Kerry since she has a hard time pronouncing his name. It’s a very mellow and relaxed life that he seems to have in this climate where it’s a very different world, spending time doing things a child would do while his father continues on with his mysterious research into magic. There’s a lush and calm feeling about it all that’s very appealing and definitely interesting to see a different look at Kiritsugu.
In a series like this, when you spend time showing what is a pretty idyllic life, you just know it’s going to end badly. And it does in the second half where what his father had in his lab has caused a severe problem, turning the whole village into a disaster that almost feels vampiric in nature. It’s dark, brutal, bloody and violent in a way that really drives home the point. With the show seemingly low on the action side, especially after the previous episode, things really go into high gear here as everything turns to hell and all Kiritsugu can do is look on in horror. The introduction of the Dead Apostles at this point feels a little weird, especially with how the series has gone so far, but it brings a very intriguing air about things as it wraps around other parts of the Fate franchise as a whole.
The pain and suffering that Kiritsugu suffered as a child certainly makes things clearer in the present for how he acts and composes himself. The story here helps to flesh him out a lot and adds a good bit of detail to the proceedings overall, but I’m a bit hard pressed to think it needed an entire episode. Sometimes the pacing of this series feels a little strange but the overall impact is definitely worthwhile. As the number of players dwindles, understanding those that are left that haven’t been explored more is definitely worthwhile. Kiritsugu has been interesting from the start but here it becomes something far more engaging and has you wanting to go back to revisit the earlier episodes to see if you read them differently.
Streamed By: Nico Nico
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.