I fully understand the point of this episode in terms of the overall story and yet at the same time I found this bridging section to be awkward even when reading the story as well. They’ve done a reasonable job of adapting it for the anime but that doesn’t alter the fact that this is strictly a transition between one conflict and the next and it isn’t the most elegantly handled.
What did you think about the adventures of Hestia familia this week Irina?
I thought the episode seemed fairly on par with the season. I honestly wouldn’t have noticed any clumsiness if you hadn’t mentioned it. In fact I still don’t. Of course I don’t have the novels to compare it to. I’m assuming they are simply better written.
Despite being a transitional episode, they do still manage to deliver some fairly important points throughout the episode. Firstly, we have the Hestia familia celebrating and they have a lot to celebrate as they point out themselves, recapping their achievements over the past few episodes. However, the last one is the one we didn’t know before and that is that Bell has gone up yet another level and is now a level 3 adventurer. It is really cool to see that he’s still getting stronger considering that is his dream and that his unique skill allows him to grow incredibly fast provided he’s passionate about it.
Bell is good at everything. I’m still waiting for a moment when he’ll just screw up something royally through his own fault. I think it will give a bit of depth and relatability to the character. This wasn’t the episode for it mind you, we were celebrating!
I liked Soma’s cameo at the beginning. I found it really touching. For some reason, I am just so intrigued by that character. Maybe there’s nothing to him…
I also enjoyed his brief appearance as it made it clear that Lily still has that history and she hasn’t just discarded all of that. It would be nice to see whether anything changes for the Soma familia in the future.
We then get a bit of a look at the mansion they’ve moved into it and it is kind of nice having a bit of down time with these characters. Seeing Mikoto’s genuine excitement over the bath they’ve had built and Welf’s quiet pride at having his own workshop ready to go are both lovely moments. Less thrilling is Lily and Hestia’s banter when they start wondering about hiring maids and then decide, based on Bell’s reaction that wouldn’t be such a great idea.
I mean, it does make sense and all, given Bell became an adventurer because his grandfather told him he could meet girls, but at the same time, given Bell’s personality, his fantasy about being surrounded by maids just seemed somewhat less than genuine.
I know. There are a few harem elements in DanMachi but it feels like the story just abandoned that idea and now we have these random little tidbits left over. Bell’s only ever shown interest in one girl no matter how many have shown interest in him and he’s always respectful.
Soon we see Daphne and Cassandra again as Cassandra is trying to get into the mansion because she dreamed her pillow was there. I love this small moment because while it means almost nothing now, these small encounters between Bell and Cassandra will eventually pay off, so what seems like a weird little sequence that has little weight is actually quietly laying some ground work for the future. Not to mention, I just like Cassandra and Daphne’s dynamic. Then again, how do you find them Irina given they really haven’t had all that much screen time? Have they left any kind of impression or are they just kind of there?
I quite like Daphne. Part of that is due tho the fact that I simply like the oracle in Greek mythology and all her many re-imaginings and part of it is the fact that I like space cadet characters. I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure I would recognize Cassandra if you showed me a picture right now. But I do know who she is in terms of being A fairly high ranking member of Apollo’s familia? I think.
By the way, they didn’t really explain what happens to the children now that the god is exiled. Do they have to go with him or are they homeless. Are they still part of the familia? How does that work?
I don’t know the full ins and outs but I do know most of Apollo’s followers are looking for new familia’s to join so I guess they are just cut free?
After this we skip onto the main part of the episode which is Hestia’s recruitment drive. Now that the family have gained some fame for their success in the war game Hestia is looking to expand. The various reactions of the current members were all pretty interesting to note.
However, as silly as the whole sequence is, I love that it comes back to Hestia’s debt that she incurred back in season one on behalf of Bell. This plot point had kind of disappeared when it seemed like such a big deal at the time that Hestia had managed to get this one of a kind knife. The fact that she always waved it off like nothing didn’t change the fact that it was a huge deal that she had the goddess of the forge make it for her child. I also love Hestia’s attempt to downplay it here as not ‘bad debt’.
Bell’s reaction was equally amusing as he realised just how valuable the knife is that he’s been running around using. Admittedly, that is exactly why Hestia got it for him, but it is still daunting to realise the value of something you’ve been using to cut through monsters.
Hestia should really have requested that Apollo taken on her debt when she won the war game!
The good part is, no one seems to be in a hurry to collect so they can take their time coming up with the payment. It’s a nice built in excuse to go fight random monsters or explore dungeons.
However, the episode inevitably becomes an extended bath scene at the end. I guess we all saw it coming as soon as we saw that they’d had the baths built and the two entrances. Bell and Welf are in one room having a bath and conversation and Hestia, soon joined by Lily and Mikoto are in the other listening in on the conversation. There’s no surprise in this scene given this type of fan-service has been in the series since the beginning, but it remains something that doesn’t really grab me about the show and still doesn’t really feel necessary to it. Ultimately it doesn’t really seem to be aiming to titillate or amuse and so it more seems like fan-service because fan-service. I don’t know, what did you think of the sequence?
It was a fun reversal of the classic tropes with the girls trying to peep in on the guys, this said there were extended scenes of the camera aimed squarely at Hestia’s painfully pressed chest as she was trying to climb over the wall so I’m not going to say titilate wasn’t one of the goals.
Speaking of which, has the fanservice gotten way more intense this season. I’m having a bit of trouble with it. There have been regular scenes, twice this episode, where the camera is so focused on Hestia’s cleavage or backside that they cut her head off screen even though she’s talking. Seems kind of rude to do that to a goddess.
I don’t know that the fan-service got more intrusive given there were plenty of shots in the first season that were equally fanservice focused. I think this episode just didn’t have enough else going on to keep things moving and so those scenes stood out more. Incidentally, if you’ve watched the OVA which is essentially a dungeon fantasy version of a hot springs visit, this episode was actually a bit tame compared.
While this one certainly isn’t my favourite episode, it has effectively moved us beyond the war game. With the ending focusing in on Mikoto it is clear we aren’t getting much down time before launching into the next arc which is probably for the best. This is one of those episodes that if you were binge watching the series would probably not really be noticed, but as a stand alone while watching weekly, it just doesn’t have the same excitement as some of the other episodes this series has delivered.
I have to say, I liked it. It was focused and easy going. There wasn’t much to it, certainly, but it didn’t have any plot holes or character inconsistencies so I have nothing to complain about.Also, I don’t think I ever get a chance to say this, I really like the ED. It’s fun and the music is popping.
I wonder if we’ll get an episode that both of us just love?
Thanks for Reading From
Irina and Karandi
Want more discussions of DanMachi Season 2 from Irina and Karandi?
Images from: DanMachi 2nd Season. Dir. T Hideki. J.C. Staff. 2019.