5 Point Discussions – Fairy Tail 20: “Not Until The Battle Is Over”

by Sage Ashford

The battle between the guilds of Ishgar and the Alvarez Empire continues, with the four most powerful Wizard Saints facing the traitorous God Serena. 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. I think this might’ve been my favorite moment in Fairy Tail, ever.
First off, I need to apologize for last week, where I said the Wizard Saints’ were garbage. They still are, but at least we got to see them try, plus…once they finally explain who God Serena is…it’s hard to hold the loss against them.  After getting thrashed off-camera last episode, Warrod leads a surprise attack against Serena–they give out a pretty good effort, even if the only thing it does is annoy Serena enough to actually try for half a second.
Quick reminder: Laxus, one of the members of Fairy Tail, is a Dragon Slayer implanted with lightning magic lacrima to emulate the powers of a real Dragon Slayer. Despite being referred to as a “false” Dragon Slayer, Laxus has always been one of the strongest members in the guild. God Serena is also a false Dragon Slayer…except he’s been implanted with eight different lacrima, all from different elemental dragons. It’s immediately understandable why he ranks as the most powerful mage both in the Spriggan 12 and in the Eight Wizard Saints.
….But then none of that matters when Acnologia shows up and kills him in literally a matter of seconds. There’s no fight, there’s very little talking, he just walks past and kills Serena faster than he can even react.  This could’ve been annoying, but Mashima set Acnologia up as a kind of final boss a long time ago, and he’s sticking to that decision. Plus God Serena was around just long enough to set him up as a believable threat, but not so long there was any fantasy match-ups for him. This works because the Spriggan 12 is supposedly made up of roughly equal mages of incredible power, and there’s Zeref, and there’s Acnologia. We didn’t really have to have another high-level threat roaming around, so using this one as a curveball who also establishes who stands at the top of the heap?  Perfect.

2. On the subject of Laxus, there’s a great bit of continuity here during another quiet moment in this massive war. Turns out he’s still suffering lingering issues from his battles during the Tartaros arc, when he absorbed a bunch of Magic Barrier Particles to save his friends and Magnolia. Though he remains as strong as he used to be, he now gets seemingly frequent attacks where the pain becomes overwhelming, making it hard to fight…or even stand up straight. This comes into play later, but it’s really just cool that they aren’t consistently winning against these impossible foes and threats with no consequences to themselves.
Also worth mention are some of the more adorable moments between the team during the night. They’re small, but it’s all endearing stuff that makes you care even more or the characters.

3. At the beginning of this season of Fairy Tail they teased a showdown between Bluenote Stinger of Orochi’s Fin and the Sky Sisters, Wendy and Sherria. But before that battle even began, Natsu arrived and immediately pulled both of them away, knocking Bluenote out with a single attack. A portion of the fandom didn’t like this because they wanted to see the two sky mages team up–so apparently the next episode or so is for ya’ll. Same team, against a vastly stronger opponent in Dimaria, who’s been embarrassing Kagura of Mermaid Heel with what seems to be time control powers.
Dimaria’s been having her fun beating on everyone, but she decides to take Sherria out once she realizes her ability to heal.  However, she doesn’t even get to make the attempt as Wendy arrives in Dragon Force mode to save her.  If I had to guess, I’d assume the two of them are going to need saving, but how awesome would it be if they didn’t and just managed to beat one of the Spriggan 12 purely through the power of team work?

4. This episode is Fairy Tail at its very best: Team mates supporting one another through life-threatening, dangerous circumstances, solid fight scenes, and some of the best bad-ass boasts in shonen anime. After an episode and a half of the other guilds being pushed back by the massive forces of the Alvarez Empire, Fairy Tail finally bursts onto the scene to help and we see an immediate change both in the tide of battle and in the general demeanor of their allies. Getting to see Lyon team up with Gray, Erza with Kagura, and Wendy with Sherria helps lighten the mood of what’s been an otherwise dour last few episodes.
But none of that is nearly as satisfying as Laxus finally getting his hands on Wall. The last time we saw Wall, he was using a copy of himself to do battle with Laxus’ Thunder God Tribe, and he nearly killed all three of them with a surprise explosion after he lost.  The unfortunate thing about Mashima’s fight scenes is while the manga might make them seem exciting, A-1 Pictures might come in with different plans, given the often weak animation the series seems to struggle with.  Fortunately, this episode handles the battle well–the fight feels impactful (though not necessarily fluid), and choreographed well.  Laxus gets enough of a lead early on to feel like he’s living up to his promise of avenging his endangered allies, but there’s enough of a back and forth so you don’t think it’s an easy win for him either.

5.  I‘m also a big fan of how Mashima didn’t just have Wall remain a jokester the entire time.  As an AI, it immediately recognizes the threat Laxus presents and changes form to try and defeat him.  I’m digging the 90’s Thunderbolts Mach-5 look he’s got too, but Laxus’ particles acting up at the last moment make me think he’s either about to go on the shelf for the forseeable future after winning, or he’s going to get that problem fixed mid-battle.
Fairy Tail is available for streaming on Funimation and Crunchyroll.

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