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Black Clover Episode #103 Anime Review

4 min read
"Release From Misfortune"
© Yūki Tabata / Shueisha · TV Tokyo · Black Clover Production Committee

“Release From Misfortune”

What They Say:
In a world where magic is everything, Asta and Yuno are both found abandoned at a church on the same day. While Yuno is gifted with exceptional magical powers, Asta is the only one in this world without any. At the age of fifteen, both receive grimoires, magic books that amplify their holder’s magic. Asta’s is a rare Grimoire of Anti-Magic that negates and repels his opponent’s spells. Being opposite but good rivals, Yuno and Asta are ready for the hardest of challenges to achieve their common dream: to be the Wizard King. Giving up is never an option!

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Let’s just get straight to the point – what’s Asta’s new ability!? I’ve anxiously been waiting to find out for a whole week now! Turns out his new ability allows him to absorb and negate the effects of spells. Well, hot dang! That’s certainly a useful ability and Asta puts it to good use right away by absorbing all the poison from the affected villagers, including Father Orsi. After a little while, everyone regains consciousness and seems to be totally fine! In a touching little moment, Sister Lily and all the kids start shedding tears of joy because they’re all just so happy that everyone is still alive.

Can’t forget about the reincarnated elf that attacked the village and caused all of this! He can’t believe that Asta is using Licht’s sword and that Yuno is still himself. This causes him to completely lose it and he begins to shout that he can never forgive the humans for what they’ve done. This cues a flashback of his life that shows us what a gentle soul he actually was. He never wanted to hurt anyone. Quite the opposite of his current demeanor, that’s for sure. Yuno comments that he feels that the elf’s soul is in pain and asking for help. Fight time baby! Yuno uses his magic to open up a path for Asta. Asta soars through Yuno’s wind magic, pierces the reincarnated elf’s chest, and promptly defeats him. Yup, he ends the fight in one blow. Two episodes of buildup for a one-hit KO.

Alright then, moving on. I will admit that I’m disappointed that the fight only lasted a couple of seconds but we at least learned a few things from it. Asta’s ability can negate the reincarnation magic which is a major game-changer. It also seems that not all of the elves wish to hurt the humans and are struggling with their own conflicted feelings. With all of that in mind, Asta has renewed faith that he can indeed save everyone!

Sadly, as has been the trend for the past few episodes, the pace begins to slow down. Not only that, we once again have to sit through explanations of what’s going. The King of the Clover Kingdom has to be told what’s going on. Asta and Yuno have to tell everyone at Hage village what’s going on. Yada yada, you get the picture. It’s all stuff we already know and don’t need to be reminded of every episode. This took up a good chunk of the second half of the episode. The rest of the time it was just Asta having his funny moments such as being told his handwriting sucks, nearly choking on tatoes, and asking Sister Lily to marry him only to be assaulted by her water magic. I usually enjoy these funny bits but they just weren’t hitting home in this situation.

Eventually, Asta and Yuno decide to depart because they still have to go the royal capital and meet up with everyone else. They’re joined by Digit, the Magic Knight who was possessed by the elf that attacked the village and has come back to his senses. After saying goodbye to everyone, they head on their way. However, as they’re traveling towards the royal capital, they sense elven magic coming from two locations. People could be in trouble and they don’t want to abandon anyone. Asta and Yuno decide to split up and investigate each location. The episode closes with them agreeing to see each other again at the royal capital.

In Summary:
The episode started off okay but then quickly dissolved into a rehash of previous episodes. One can only tolerate seeing the same thing over and over again for so long. It’s becoming exceedingly clear that this arc is dragging. Even the animation this episode was suffering more than usual. I’m not liking this trend. On the bright side, Asta’s new ability was pretty neat and we got treated to a new opening and ending! I particularly liked the new opening with its catchy vocals and stunning visuals. Here’s to hoping that things will steadily improve from here on out.

Grade: C-

Streamed By: Crunchyroll, VRV

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