Junketsu no Maria – 08

Junketsu no Maria 8-015

Things just keep piling on, one after another…

Welcome back to the Hundred Years War. No one could ever say it’s easy for A Problem Like Maria, as she may not have out-pestered every pest, but she has taken on her share of hornet’s nests. I don’t think she has great song and dance in her future, but she may surprise.

Lupus est Homo Homini

Man is a Wolf to Man

Junketsu no Maria 8-010

Everyone is blaming everyone else…

Well, few characters can escape hypocrisy this episode. Also, few characters can escape the accusation of blame-shifting. That’s such a slippery slope on both occasions. With Garfa, he easily blames Maria for the loss of a winning battle, something Le Comte shares in, and the loss of his arm. He’s forgetting that he placed himself in these situations, first by being a soldier by choice, and second he made the decision to break ranks during the battle. For the first, he should know the risks, even with an errant witch about, for the second he placed himself on that hill when the cannons fired. Also, blame that English idiot for re-starting the battle after Maria got a cease-fire.

But the biggest hypocrite is Brother Bernard. Who is not shirking away the least bit from the idea of necessary evil. He probably knows full well, as does Gilbert, just through common sense that Maria’s medicines were effective. But never let an opportunity go to the rubbish bin. I feel terrible than Ann and her family are in direct line of fire. But Bernard’s ideals were already in place before, so with his opponents mistake in hand the official campaign against Maria begins. Which brings us right back to Ezekiel. I have few doubts in my mind she made a mistake when she gave Ann that bag of “medicine” (As an aside it probably did have some toxic qualities to it; drugs are basically toxins that fall short). But she isn’t owning up to it when the opportunity presents itself; she does show remorse, but how much of that is her own feelings for Maria, and her guilt over betrayal?

Junketsu no Maria 8-08

One more mysterious appearance 

But how much of this is foreseen? The show begins with a tribe of goblin-like folk, more than likely a very small remainder of the fantasy style world this place was before the cementing of the church. As remnants, they have few places to go for any sort of relief, and they are pushed even more by both human encroachment and warfare. But as Cernunnous reminds us, this is the path nature takes. Or at least part of it. The strong overcome the weak. So this reminds Maria, again, what her stake in actions actually are. Why stem the flow? Is it her nature?

I’m guessing yes it very much is. The other witches seem to have little problem accepting other roles, just as the village is easily able to forget all the good done for them by their resident witch. Go with the flow, swim with it, or drown swimming against it. This is the Problem with Maria, very much like trying to catch the moonlight, or hold the tide to the sand, but more worth it than people can imagine with the hardships that the war continues to bring. How does she solve this problem? Turn with the tide? It is occurring he says. Another battle looms, and that may be the thing that brings more clarity to Maria’s self-proclaimed mission. It might even have some Valkyries; and I love how they skewer the churches words. On a long enough time line, tides can turn back. And they were there first!

Junketsu no Maria 8-06

How strong an ally?

I wish I could say that Bernard’s campaign is limited to turning the villages against her, and blaming their war deficient on her “meddling”. But sadly it doesn’t. It’s enough for both him and Le Comte to re-affirm Garfa’s place on the battlefield; he’s their pawn turned knight. But for the ultimate game-changing plans they have for Maria are revolting; or at least Bernard’s plan to rob her of her magic, Garfa has a great deal of trouble accepting it, drugs or no drugs for the task.

This probably makes him more like Ezekiel in the scheme of things; with some regrets for the parts they have to play. Which I hope is turning key on the outcome of the whole story. I would love to see both the heavenly messenger and solid soldier rebel. It would be deeply ironic seeing as how both Le Comte and Bernard have used Maria’s will and power to their own ends. Something needs to bite them on their arses when they least expect it…

Junketsu no Maria 08-arms

Junketsu no Maria 08-face

The animators just love their main character….

This one was a nasty piece of work in so many places, and we’ve only seen the tip of the slimy tentacle. I had to savor the irony of the words on the box containing Garfa’s new prosthetic hand, Dulce Bellum Inexpertis, “War is sweet to those who have never experienced it”. Just as we have to be wary of the wolves around us shaped like human beings, we should be wary of those that preach a just and glorious war to those that have never been face down in the battlefield. And before anyone calls foul on the mecha arm, it does have some bad-ass historical evidence!

If there was one thing that gave me some pause, it was Maria’s resolve, or lack thereof, at the end. Which makes her seem awkward and a bit clueless.  I wanted her to have a back-story, something grand and epic that gave us the right morsel to chew on. Something that set her course with grim determination. But, I think I’m wrong for wanting that sort of exposition at this point. She doesn’t need that at all, does she? Not even a little bit…

Junketsu no Maria 8-014

 ♬♫Just a spoonful of sugar ♬♫….what? Oh, I’ve got the wrong Andrews movie? Yeah, but the intent is similar…


All around nerd that enjoys just about any anime genre. I love history, politics, public policy, the sciences, literature, arts...pretty much anything can make me geeky...except sports. Follow me @theskylion
Blinklist BlogMarks Delicious Digg Diigo FaceBook Google MySpace Netvibes Newsvine Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter

15 Responses to “Junketsu no Maria – 08”

  1. zztop says:

    I heard Garfa’s an anime-original character. Is this true?

    • skylion says:

      I have heard that, yes. In addition to both Bernard and Gilbert. But I’ve only read the 12 scanlated chapters that are currently out, and that’s three short of the first volume, and 2 volumes short….

  2. belatkuro says:

    Fullmetal Galfa.
    Are prosthetics already in use from way back then?

    • skylion says:

      Egyptian times had some of the earliest, but they did’t really hit their stride until around the 1800s.

    • BlackBriar says:

      Galfa has the prototype. Edward Elric’s metal arm is more flexible.

  3. Highway says:

    I’m starting to wonder if something I’m feeling here is part of why I don’t really care for historical drama. I get very hung up on how incredibly and almost universally awful the people in this kind of story are. Pretty much the entirety of the cast besides Maria’s group, Joseph, and Ann are either blithely hostile to my point of view, or actively antagonistic to what I feel humanity should be. And what’s worse, they think they are doing the right thing, so there’s no effort to improve themselves, there’s no acknowledgement that the way they treat ‘others’ is horrible. Just “Oh, she’s a witch, she should be ostracized (at best) or raped.”

    It also doesn’t help my view of any and all churches.

    • skylion says:

      At this point in my life there is nothing that could help or hinder my viewpoint of organized religion.

      And what’s worse, they think they are doing the right thing

      I find this no different than any other serial drama. And that’s a limitation of both writing and audience expectation. Having said that, I feel this show is reaching for some subtlety. Is it getting there? Hmmmmm…

      • Highway says:

        Perhaps the difference is that usually the abhorrent viewpoint is openly self-centered. “I don’t like those people.” or “I don’t care about those people.” In something like this it’s “We need to visit violence and intolerance on them for their own good.” “We are so convinced we are right that we cannot even accept the existence of other values.”

        I dunno, I just find myself very upset at shows with characters like that.

        • skylion says:

          …for their own good…

          In this respect, perhaps the show is hitting it too close to real life?

          • Highway says:

            Perhaps it’s more like “I understand people in the past were largely odious. I don’t particularly care to watch them be odious.”

            I tend to not like watching shows with bad people being bad people.

            • BlackBriar says:

              Given that this is mostly based on historical periods, you can’t expect them to sugarcoat stuff. Otherwise, it would come off as fake and unrealistic.

          • BlackBriar says:

            If you ask me, the show is trying to maintain as much historical accuracy and insight on human nature as possible because this is exact kind of prejudice that was common in the past. It’s more real than most historical based anime. There’s no holding back. That’s why it can put people off so easily.

    • BlackBriar says:

      or actively antagonistic to what I feel humanity should be.

      You hit the nail on the head right there. There’s a huge difference between what is and what should be and the former is dominant.

  4. BlackBriar says:

    Wow, everything is really hitting the fan. Fortunately, Maria still has people who care for her.

    Hmmm… I know this show had witches and other stuff but it didn’t cross my mind that goblins would make an appearance.

    • skylion says:

      I think the very sudden and brief appearance was done on purpose. It’s sad, but their days are long gone, and this is what is left. How much this foreshadows what Maria will have to face in future is quite ominous.

Leave a Reply