At the last moment, an unexpected team-up occurs! Does the entire Black Bulls team have a chance at shutting down Vetto, or is this the end of the group? Remember, if you like this article and 5 Point Discussions, please share it on Facebook or Twitter! It really helps. And if you’ve got any comments or questions, please hit me up @SageShinigami.
1. If anyone was wondering how the series would handle things as it came down to the final few episodes of its episode count while being nowhere near a reasonable stopping point, the answer was apparently: “lots and lots of filler”. This episode slows the pace down drastically and decides to adapt only a single chapter, but for once it isn’t necessarily a bad thing: we get a Vanessa fight out of it! She’s just been in the background for the majority of the series–she’ll make appearances but it’s always after she’s already smashed, having spent all her money on alcohol.
But here we finally get a preview of her abilities while she squares up against another member of the Eye of the Midnight Sun. To be fair, they did great job of incorporating this new mage–a guy capable of using sound waves to disrupt his opponent’s magic and focus while draining energy with mana-draining blades he keeps in his palms. It’s the same kind of oddly specific ability that matches ball and chain guy from a couple episodes ago. I actually wish this fight had gone on a bit longer–she makes quick work of her opponent and rushes off to help Asta and Noelle, but extending her fight here wouldn’t have been so bad considering the recap and usual “Black Clover” intro sucked up quite a bit of time.
2. While Noelle watches Vetto transform, she has a moment where she remembers a story she learned from her grandmother. Her story sounds suspiciously familiar to the one we’ve been seeing in the intro about how the Wizard King toppled a mighty demon. She talks about how there was a group of evil fiends who lived in the world and wanted to make magic all their own, with the strongest of them using a forbidden spell to turn into a demon of incredible power to wipe out humanity.
Before this, Licht and his allies have talked about how his race was wiped out for seemingly no reason while all they wanted to do was live peacefully alongside humanity. It’s a little easy to say the truth is likely going to be in the middle–doubtlessly some of the elves killed by humanity were in fact innocent, but given Licht’s duplicitous actions there’s undoubtedly some gaps in his story. One thing that’s clear at this point however–the grimoire Asta has was absolutely the weapon of the so-called “demon” from before.
3. As much as my initial instinct is to trash Finral for wanting to run away, he’s probably the only realistic person in this entire fight. When a guy has run through a miniature army, exhausted your heaviest hitters and walked away with not even a scratch–the right answer probably IS running away and figuring out another plan. Plus it makes him all the more endearing when he decides he can’t abandon his friends, and if they’re too stupid to run away he’s stupid enough to stand by their side and fight. Even Vanessa points out how shocked she is Finral the Coward has decided to stand up for something–Asta really is changing all the people around him.
4. And so at the end of it all things come down to a three on one match: Finral allowing Asta to vanish through his portals and reflecting any long range attack right back at Vetto. Vanessa helping Asta to move around with her magical threads, making his attack and defense impossible to predict based on his movement alone. And Asta’s anti-magic sword being the only thing capable of actually dealing damage to this monster that’s run through an entire group of Magic Knight guards. It’s a solid plan, and involves using the kind of teamwork we scarcely see in shows like this…if they can stay alive long enough to properly execute the plan.
5. Next Episode: The battle between Vetto and the Black Bulls starts in earnest. Asta’s already beaten to hell and this plan’s sketchy at best. Here’s hoping no curveballs show up…
From the look of the next episode’s title, I’m going to guess as we get down to the wire they’ll be adapting things at a much slower pace. We finish how we began, I suppose. I’m kinda bummed too, because this episode was great and it just makes me realize how much better this show should have been.
Black Clover is available for streaming on Crunchyroll and Hulu.