Wasting no time after announcing his identity, Rider requests that Saber and Lancer yield the grail to him and join him as friends rather than foes, however due to preexisting obligations and sentiments neither can accept his offer. Lancer because of the loyalty he has towards his Master and Saber because she is a king herself, finding herself unable to bow to another.
And on a somewhat related note, Fate/Extra’s English version comes out in one to two days.
Aside from that, in riding by Rider’s side Waver has also revealed to Kayneth that he was the one who stole the catalyst for the Servant he intended to summon, intending to teach him a little lesson on the matter of Magi killing each other in the Holy Grail War. But to this, Rider reassures him with a smile and laughs in Kayneth’s face, declaring that a coward like him who hides in the shadows rather than riding into battle at his side isn’t worthy of being his Master. Then proceeding calling out the other Servants who had been observing Saber and Lancer’s duel.
The first for which is Archer, who looks down upon the two insolent mongrels with the nerve to declare themselves in his presence, finding their ignorance and inability to recognise him to be punishable by death. But just as he turns his Gate of Babylon towards them, Kariya makes his move by sending Berserker with the intention of destroying Archer, and unlike the others it’s impossible to get an idea of the Black Knight’s parameters. Yet when Archer turns his sights Berserker grasps the first blade with ease and uses it to destroy the second, then proceeding to juggle his way through the ensuing onslaught of blades as Archer quickly loses his temper against this Mad Dog, before sending two of them right back at him. And so with the situation growing worse, Tokiomi uses up one of his Command Seals to force his Servant to withdraw.
However while it looks as if things have calmed down, without so much as a look at Saber, Berserker completely loses it and takes to her with the severed lamp pole. Revealing that one of his Noble Phantasms allows him to use anything he picks up as such. Instantly forcing her into a corner as the wound she took from Lancer starts to takes its toll, but just as Berserker is about to deliver a decisive blow none other than Lancer intervenes on her behalf. However Kayneth doesn’t believe in such chivalry and uses a Command Seal to force him to join Berserker in eliminating Saber. Immediately forcing Kiritsugu into action by coordinating an attack with Maiya to eliminate Kayneth and distract Assassin at the same time, but just as he’s about to pull the trigger Rider intervenes by trampling Berserker while shouting the traditional Macedonian war cry.
Threatening to take Saber’s side if Kayneth persists on humiliating his Servant and forcing him and Berserker as well to withdraw. After which Rider decides to exchange a few words with Saber, telling her that he’ll face the winner of their duel and hoping that she’ll enjoy their next meeting. And so with this, the first night of the Holy Grail War comes to an end. In the sewers below however, Kariya rejoices in how he was able to humiliate Tokiomi but fears that his body won’t last, and in Caster’s workshop, Caster finds that his wish has come true. Believing that Saber is Joan of Arc.
Well I must say, Ufotable is certainly setting the bar, five episodes in and there hasn’t been a bad one yet, the animation is still amazing and there’s barely any signs of QUALITY at all. Sure there’s CG Berserker, but doesn’t he work better that way?
Sure I was disappointed as well at first but when I thought about it, I came to believe that it wasn’t really that bad. That when it came down to it it actually suited him, not to mention he would have been rather difficult to animate otherwise. Aside from his intricate armour and the shroud he has to conceal him, he actually has a good deal of fast paced action scenes (as we’ll be seeing more of in the second cour), so if it’s used smoothly it could end up being a good thing . So far it really hasn’t been that much of a disappointment either, undeniably one of the highlights of this episode was how when faced with the Gate of Babylon he simply caught and juggled his way through what ever Archer threw at him. And even then as well, it’s still quite likely that they’ll revert to hand drawn animation when his identity is finally exposed and his shroud isn’t needed.
Aside from that Waver and Rider’s story also took an interesting step forward, Kayneth now knows that Waver was the one who stole his catalyst and the workings for the personal conflict between them are now underway. Meaning that Waver should be the one who Kayneth will be personally after from this point on, wanting not only to get back at him for ‘stealing’ his Servant but also wanting to finally get rid of the student who does nothing but piss him off. And if anything Waver doesn’t look to be handling it well. However given Lancer’s chivalrous nature, it’s more likely that he’ll be more concerned with Saber instead for the time being, basically to give their duel a proper end unless he wants to further waste his Command Seals, things that can actually make the impossible possible if the Master and Servant are in sync. Alongside that of course, while Waver is still something of a wimp the remark that Rider made about him was still great, that despite his cowardice riding into battle with him made him a better Master than Kayneth, in saying so openly accepting Waver as his Master and partner in this war.
Overall however the primary feeling to this episode was something along the lines of the opening appetisers in the feast that is the story as a whole, acting as a way of showing off everyone’s abilities and having them all somehow meet each other before things can progress any further. Essentially letting them know who they’re up against and giving them all the ability to put a face to them as well, with the exception of Caster and Assassin. That aside with this episode we’ve also reached the end of the material in the first novel, and in doing so it feels as if we’ve reached the end of a short story arc, one that was used to open the series and present us the characters and their goals. Aside from that the ending was also somewhat amusing as well, with Caster making the same mistake that near everyone makes concerning Saber’s identity. Mistaking her for his former companion in arms Joan of Arc.