RE: Zero Kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu – 17

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Things just keep turning in that particular direction…

There’s been an awful lot of tension thus far, and this is the latest chapter in that…but they do pack in a crazy bunch of clues in with this. I’m bringing speculation and some frustration as well…let’s get to it…

Existential Nightmare Creatures of the Id

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Breaking 2: Electric Subaru

In picking up where we last left off, we learn that Subaru is still capable of drawing those dread mabeasts to himself just by simply existing. This White Whale is no different, and is really the latest in a long line of terrible crapstorms that he has the damnedest habit of stumbling into. For all the faults we’ve been laying at his feet the past couple of episodes, I think we can eliminate blaming him this time. He has the stench of the witch, the Rebirth by Death, the whole works, and he didn’t ask for a damn bit of it either, and a bunch of that is working against him again and again…


Poor Otto…

For the most part we know very little about the magical ecology of this world. This story is playing that set of cards close to the vest (again, hopefully they won’t forget the game they’re playing), and is riding high on sheer emotion and spectacle to carry the storytelling. I’m sure LN fans have some things to say, but I’ll over-reach one more time on my urgings to use spoiler tags in comments. I’m not sure I want to be spoiled any longer, and that is really saying something. But I think that there is a great deal going on in the background concerning the White Whale and Rem’s possible fate. I’m hoping she does return in a cool unexpected way. She doesn’t pull this with a hope of reward. Hell, she doesn’t do it focused on success either, just to get him a little bit ahead on the path, just maybe a touch closer to hope.

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She’s still ten times more than he’ll ever be….

For the most part, the White Whale is doing a great job twisting up and adding lines of conflict to an already combative plot-line. So, Subaru can just die and bring people back to life by revisiting the last save point, eh? Fine, now that your comfortable with that – and more to the point, now that Subaru and you are expecting that – let’s really change the rules. Rem will be forgotten, the merchant forgets her, Emilia forgets her, her own twin forgets her. So is that forgotten for good now? Will a Return fix that? Can he risk that? Does he know what he’s risking? And…if Otto the merchant can remember a “punitive force” that failed to defeat the White Whale, then what is the value of being forgotten here? If they can be remembered like this, can Rem? I’ve said this in a previous episode, but Subaru needs to settle down and get some intel, and not staple himself to a deathwish all the time. Which means that we need some intel, really…

<insert silly “something+hold+heart” song lyrics here>

But of course whomever is in control, The Envy Witch at a guess, of all the circumstances surrounding Subaru and his use of Return have other things in mind. I love how the story played by that assumption. That he was prepared to take on any punishment and finally express and risk all his heart could convey what he needed to say, and what he needed her to hear, and then the rules get changed on him. At some point you have to wonder if the story is trying to give him the object lesson or is it just trying to shock us. But, for me, I think it shows that, much like Subaru cannot afford to presume that Crusch, Anastasia, and Priscilla owe him something for just being the dude, he cannot afford to presume any longer that the power he has has ever been his to control, or even has been there for his benefit. He’s not a player, he’s not the main character, he’s a game-piece, he’s a point around which the story turns, not the story itself.

So are her drill tails little devil horns? Or a callback?

To me it feels like he wandered in on the edge of the pages of a greater chapter of a larger book. Someone with far more narrative pull, if you will, than he has arranged for him to be their cat’s paw. But we’ll get to cat’s in a bit. I’m more concerned about the sudden and incredibly dramatic return of my favorite bottle-loli. I’ve been begging for an explanation, and even though she doesn’t spell it out, it’s very evocative. She was so resigned, wasn’t she. Accepting. She’s very familiar with the scene it seems. Is she aware of Return in some capacity, or is she paying attention to a larger story? At most, she defends the mansion and her precious Bubby, I suppose? OK, I’ve mentioned him twice now, so no use holding back.


Dammit, that Gilgamesh, he get’s everywhere….GATE OF BUBBYLON! Oh shut up…

Wait…did Beako just teleport Subaru’s ass to the enemy…like right at their proverbial doorstep when he was at his lowest, when Emilia was cut low. Was she going on about the difference between her and Rosewall? Did she just gift-wrap that whole thing? Whaaaaaaa? Did the Cult even get her anything in return? Whaaaaa? Well it’s no time to wonder about that now. We got Betel back and causing more crap. Thank goodness they gave him limited scenery to chew, this time around. But the long and the short: it’s no secret that killing Emilia is something he wants, to own, to posses, to kill???, so that tells us that Emilia isn’t exactly all the way, 100% dead. I mean, if she’s dead things get really snowy real quick, right? Also, isn’t PUCK restricted to daytime hours? Can’t come out at night, that type of jazz? Oh my, Re: Zero, you need some space for rules, man!


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What’s a Subaru gotta do for his little blue pill?

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We have a ton of will he-nil he going on. I said the anime is very capable of bringing on the spectacle and emotion to get the message out, and I really love it for that. But once they got the signal out, they need to fine tune it to diminish what could turn out to be noise. I’m thinking that pretty much everything that a main character can be disabused of has been well and truly affected, and thus by proxy so has the audience. These past three episodes should very much be the final salvo in the war vs. all the derpy presumptuous fantasy good guy tropes. I think we got it, and I think they can start putting the bits into the larger narrative. It’s evocative, yes. But there really is a time in fantasy when you need to know the nuts and bolts. I mean, I have had a fairly high tolerance for Subaru’s torture by narrative so far, but it’s reached it’s final innings, it’s near time to move on. I know many have been saying that for at least that long, if not longer, however don’t think I’m there just yet. I’m game for just at touch more…See you next time…But then the game has to change, right?

…until then, you just gotta dance…


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
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11 Responses to “RE: Zero Kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu – 17”

  1. ProtoSovereign says:

    Yeah, it would be nigh time for some answers and moving forward (plot-wise). At least this episode wasn’t Subaru screwing up royally like before… Show ▼

  2. FVA says:

    When He ranting about Emilia and the eye act basically as a Mirror. it tugs the hearts really really hard

    Next Week 26 Minutes Continuation of the Self ranting and why rem best waifu.

    The Week after that keep calm and :

    • FVA says:

      sori i really dont know how to put a video here

      • skylion says:

        ..that’s OK. I fixed it for you in edit.

        Oh yes, i know that feeling of the eyes. Get’s you right in the heart.

        But I don’t really know why the need to go all the way to Gondor for aid, LOL! Unless you’re being sneaky with a clue..I think you are!

        But, speaking of Bernard Hill (he plays Theoden) I saw a great historical series with him just today…

        ..wish I could find the bit where he sentences Anne Boyleyn to death…

  3. IreneSharda says:

    Yargh, there be the White Whale! Oh he’s not a whale, he’s the devil himself!

    I wonder if Herman Melville fell into this world too?

    I’m telling you, this series is trying to scramble my brain and make mincemeat with my heart with all this tension and suspense. For the whale to be able to cut a person completely out of existence, and for all traces of them to be erased, I do indeed fear for Rem. If her entire existence has been ripped out of the timeline, Subaru might not be able to go back enough to reset it.

    And I love everything you said here about Subaru being far from the main character and actually only being a pawn for an unseen chessmaster. I thought that apropos especially with how the witch changed the rules the moment he decided to break them, killing Emilia rather than Subaru. He doesn’t set the rules, he’s not in control and never has been. (When you talked about the narrator of a book, I don’t know why I pictured Winnie the Pooh and how the Narrator tells the characters what to do and how they can jump out to of the book and turn pages. lol)

    I don’t know why Subaru couldn’t explain the cult’s danger and presence to Emilia. He didn’t have to talk about return by death. Explain to her like he did the other girls. Emilia probably would believe him. Him yell at her to just do as he says, would have the opposite effect on anyone.

    I’m not quite sure what to make of Betty and her words and actions. Someone suggested that she was about to defend the mansion from attack from the cult (who would be coming at this point) which is why everything was red outside and she sent him away. I’m not sure if that’s what was going on, but hopefully we get an explanation.

    It seems the cult means to use this “Ordeal” as a way to test Emilia’s mettle. They actually don’t seem to want her death, but instead to help her grow somehow?

    Your right in that I do indeed want to start getting some answers. Will the witch ever show herself?

    • skylion says:

      Subaru might not be able to go back enough to reset it

      You’ve hit the nail on the head. What if his Restart puts him in the moment before she leaps form the wagon? What would that do to his psyche?

      Him yell at her to just do as he says, would have the opposite effect on anyone

      Another nail! I’m glad you picked up on this…I was, not able to really write a good string of sentences on this, I was a bit angry. So…I just ignored it! But you picked it up so well, and really got to the point I should have made.

      As for Betty? I think she’s made a deal…but I can’t really give proof on that gut feeling.

      And yes, Pooh Bear. But I think Barusu is piglet!

    • belatkuro says:

      I don’t know why Subaru couldn’t explain the cult’s danger and presence to Emilia.

      This was what frustrated me in this episode. All it took was him saying two words to Emilia: Witch’s Cult, and things would have turned out differently, probably.

      To give some sort of defense for him, I would say that since he lost all the carriages he rented, he probably thought it was useless to say it to her. If he told her, she might have rushed to protect the village and get herself killed. And so he wanted to get her away immediately. He really could have done better though but ehh.

      • skylion says:

        …really I don’t think Subaru is that off the mark from most people, he’s crap under stress…and this guy has seen some things! I mean, I could expect that from a dude that falls for a girl that is waaaaaaaaay out his power level…

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