This is the stuff nightmares are made of.
What They Say:
With the Axe of Marduk, Fujimaru’s party manages to weaken Gorgon by lowering her Divinity. Having opened a path for themselves, they finally reach the Blood Fort’s depths. There, Gorgon says that she will gain her revenge by destroying humanity. Ana unleashes her own Divinity, which had been suppressed until now, against Gorgon. Using her own Mystic Eyes, Ana neutralizes Gorgon’s, and her scythe is the only weapon able to combat the immortal goddess. Can Ana’s blade defeat a goddess capable of resurrecting herself after any attack?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
This is a strange episode in a number of ways. This battle with Gorgon has been built up since the first round many episodes ago, which was a battle on the epic scale you’d expect. Ana’s role in it was also built up significantly in the previous episode, culminating in a climax that set up this episode to be the ultimate showdown between the two sisters, as we’ve come to realize they essentially are. It is more or less that… for a few minutes. Everything that seemed like it should be the center of attention was burned through in shockingly little time, especially considering the repercussions of the battle are just as substantial as anyone could’ve anticipated, on all sides.
There’s nothing particularly weak about this confrontation except the fact that it all feels rather rushed. What hurts the most is likely the fact we don’t get sufficient time to appreciate the gravity of the results. The first battle with Gorgon really only had losses for the protagonists, but it was given its full episode and then some, letting the storytelling flow naturally to a delivery of relatively effective pathos – and a touch of horror – by the end of it. This could’ve had a bittersweet sense of closure before ending on a cliffhanger revealing that they weren’t in the clear yet, but the structure of recent events as well as the pacing, particularly of this episode, turns what would’ve otherwise been a climax into what feels like a recap.
While we may not get as much time to marinate on the simultaneous victory and loss, though, the episode is nothing if not eventful. The attention quickly turns to Kingu, and then to a disturbing new enemy called the Lahmu. Babylonia has ventured into humor that pushes past its usual level of anachronism to become truly bizarre, but this introduces a level of bizarre that is truly horrific in a way that removes the sense of humanity found in Gorgon and Kingu’s earlier villainy.
Despite being the children of Tiamat called the “new humanity,” these Lahmu resemble beings from our world less than anything we’ve seen, including the previous Demonic Beasts. These are like the Beta from Muv-Luv, devoid of recognizable qualities and seemingly existing only to brutally eviscerate everyone in sight. If the intention is for the series to suddenly become horrifically, viscerally disturbing, I’d say it accomplishes that. It feels like it came out of nowhere, but I suppose that tonal whiplash is especially effective in delivering that sensation.
The long-awaited rematch with Gorgon puts Ana in the starring role, making for a satisfying showdown while it lasts. However, this is blown through so quickly that it feels far more rushed than something of this weight should. When we move onto the next matter, we’re faced with the strangest enemy we’ve seen to date, making for a powerful sense of revulsion. Whatever the series has next is certainly not something I would’ve predicted a week ago, so I’ll give it credit for that. However, I can’t help but feel that the matters concerning Ana and Gorgon could’ve been given a bit more time, both for the battle and for the aftermath. There’s a lot going on here, and perhaps it was executed a bit clumsily, all things considered.
Streamed By: Funimation
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