Asta helps Mars bring his old friend’s memories back. Is the fighting over now, or are things about to reach an even hotter stage? 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. There’s a less than zero chance this actually worked, but for now Ladros and his meme-worthy voice is gone. He manages to catch up to Mars and Fanzell before they reach Asta and the others, but doesn’t do any strict damage to them. Instead, Fanzell gets Asta to redirect one of Fana’s giant fireballs directly at Ladros. Mars predicted they could stop him by hitting him with a source of magic too big for him to absorb, and the last we see of him this episode is him being swallowed up by the ball of flame. We’re meant to believe he got cooked by the flame and that’s it, but…there’s no way this is anything besides a swerve to make us forget about him so he can come back and be a pain next episode, right?
2. Boy, this episode sure did burn a lot of time on stuff we’d already seen before. Get it? Burn? Ah, true genius is never appreciated. Seriously though, a good three minutes of this episode was devoted to reminding us of the connection between Mars and Fana. We’re given a full recap of Mars’ time trapped in one of the Diamond Kingdom’s training facilities, shown how he was forced to defeat all of his classmates–and how Fana turned on him and forced him to kill her, all so he could escape the land they were trapped in. Normally I rip on Black Clover for its filler, but this was pretty judiciously used–the last time we saw Mars was over forty episodes ago. At best you’re recapping for the number of new viewers that might have jumped on between then, and at worst you’re reminding us of Mars’ story so we can understand his pathos and desire to save her. In either case, it’s a necessary goal to properly tell the story of the episode.
3. This is a small note, but I just wanted to say how happy I am that people remembered fire isn’t just dangerous if it touches you. While Asta and Mars are gradually plodding towards Fana, they reach a point where they can’t progress any further–because her powers made the heat of the flames alone enough to scorch their skin. Mars creates protective flame casing for them to allow them to continue to progress, and while it’s funny they literally fought fire with fire, it’s just nice to see someone remembered it isn’t just the flames alone which present danger. This is ignored all the time in fiction–characters have battles with lava literally splurting out around them and everyone seems fine, when in actuality those levels of heat actually make you catch on fire from proximity alone. They didn’t get it exact, but even lip service is more than most shows give.
4. Though he could have gotten a bit more time, Mars actually has a pretty strong story arc here. Working for the Diamond Kingdom is amoral, disturbing work–taking land from others, taking lives in the name of a government that’s already stolen everything from you. It turned Ladros from a kind boy into a sociopathic adult, and Mars into someone utterly emotionless. It’s all the more satisfying then, watching Mars risk being burnt to a cinder just to snap Fana out of it.
Fana decides if she can’t beat Asta and his friends, she’ll self-destruct like Vetto. This plan didn’t work last time, but the variables are a bit different here–there’s no Yami to cut through dimensions before she can explode here–they all actually stand a chance of dying, until Asta gets close enough to destroy her spell before it can reach critical mass. Meanwhile, before she can attempt something else, Mars manages to snap her out of it with a hug, breaking the spell holding the fallen elf inside of her mind.
5. Next Episode: Mars and Fana are re-united, so that means the story’s over right? Well, that’d be too easy. Ladros is in the preview, so there’s a good chance he’s super charged and ready to kick the crap out of everyone. Hope Asta’s got the strength left to fight him off.
Black Clover is available on Funimation and Crunchyroll.