Aldnoah.Zero: The Rose and the Ring (Through the Deep Forest)
February 15, 2015 10:04 AM - Season 1, Episode 18 - Subscribe

Earth forces take on Count Selnakis in New Orleans. Mazuurek continues making his way to his landing castle. Slaine and Count Marylcian begin their duel, with Harklight, Count Barouhcruz, and Lemrina - posing as Asseylum - as witnesses. The winner of the duel is entitled to all of the loser's assets.

And ... a new development after the ending credits.
posted by needled (7 comments total)
And Inaho, with his god's eye, calls fire down from the heavens upon the interlopers.
posted by ardgedee at 1:54 PM on February 15, 2015

So Slaine now has a landing castle of his own. And perhaps the Herschel can be refurbished for use by one of Slaine's underlings, maybe Harklight? Although I would think Harklight would be more useful away from the frontlines, directing operations.

Meanwhile Mazuurek is cosplaying Lawrence of Arabia or alternately enjoying his gap year backpacking through the desert. Interesting he groups together Slaine and Inaho as "sons of Earth" and muses about their trustworthiness. So far it looks like being a Vers count who shows up in the OP is a death flag, but I would like to see Mazuurek surviving to the end.
posted by needled at 11:05 AM on February 16, 2015 [1 favorite]

Mazuurek proved to be likeable, although in contrast with the other Vers nobility in this show, that is probably little more than a coded way of saying "apparently redeemable".

Slaine is erratic; sometimes when he's caught flatfooted, as in last week's ep, he wears it on his face; at other times, like this week, he has a sixth sense regarding how to navigate an awkward situation. I'm not sure how to account for it, other than that maybe the story's already too busy for the writers to get hung up on scenes of him learning how to behave among his new peers.
posted by ardgedee at 1:31 PM on February 16, 2015

I just re-read the episode description, and I didn't realize that ruined metropolis was supposed to be New Orleans. It looked way too dense to be that city. Anyway, the battle Selnakis seemed like the writers were checking off the "Inaho defeats another Vers Knight" box for this episode as quickly as possible, so they could focus on the duel.

Which was also quite a let-down, because it wasn't so much a duel as Marylcian sending out his infantry against Slaine's solo (predictive) efforts. Of course Slaine will win, so it's just a matter of Slaine finding the battleground where he can defeat the last few autonomous electric guitar drones.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:08 AM on February 18, 2015

> Of course Slaine will win, so it's just a matter of Slaine finding the battleground where he can defeat the last few autonomous electric guitar drones.

The story arc couldn't afford to have him take much of a setback from the duel, so I think I liked the sequence mostly for demonstrating that Slaine's learning to do his research.

In contrast, Inaho's punishment for aiding the enemy amounted to having to put up with his sister moping, and I'm feeling increasingly cynical about his becoming the most powerful man on Earth.

But yeah the episodes seem to be unwinding in a relatively pat manner. The shocks have a too-calculated feel, being as they're seemingly held back until they can deliver the most payoff. Watching this latest episode was a roller coaster ride, but in hindsight the Big Reveal wasn't going to happen at any other time than when it did, was it?
posted by ardgedee at 4:27 PM on February 18, 2015

So Slaine now has a landing castle of his own.

Didn't Slaine already have a landing castle? Sauzbaum had one, right? Or he couldn't be a count. And Slaine inherited all of Sauzbaum's stuff (bar his mecha, which he destroyed).
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:06 PM on February 20, 2015

Saazbaum's landing castle was effectively lost in episode 12, when Slaine and Saazbaum escaped with Asseylum.

In episode 17, Marylcian taunted Slaine for not having a landing castle, and in his view this disqualified Slaine from guarding the princess. And then he challenged Slaine to a duel and probably regretted not wearing a spacesuit for the duel.
posted by needled at 7:37 AM on February 21, 2015

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