Okay, okay, I know I previously criticized the fast pace of the show, but after this episode I just have to say this: three months? We’re supposed to believe that everything that has happened took place over the course of three months? Event-wise, I suppose that’s possible, but character-wise? I’m sorry, but I find that hard to buy. Livius was a cold, hateful young man, and we’re supposed to buy that, in the course of three months (less, really), Nike was able to completely change his character? That’s just… hard to believe. Anyway, now that I have that criticism over…
I have to admit, I tend to question myself a lot, so I really don’t know if that point of criticism is valid, or if it’s criticism for the sake of having something to criticize. I mean, this isn’t a plot-heavy show in the first place, but rather a show about character interaction and, ultimately, the effect we have on each other. Sure, it’s wrapped up in a pretty, fantasy-esque box, but how much does that really play into the show, beyond Nike’s constant use of rain summoning? We do see her occasionally use her wind powers to cut stuff, but it certainly doesn’t seem to be the center of attention. Again, that’s debatable with the rain stuff, but still…
Now, I’ve rambled enough. The only other thing I’ll say is that, in the past, Nike was hesitant to use her rain summoning for show, but in this episode we see her doing it for a crowd of people… I guess her perspective has changed. The real meat and potatoes of this episode, though, revolves around Nike’s return to the Principality of Rain with Livius in tow. We actually get to “meet” her sisters in person, as opposed to the fanservice-laden introduction we received in a flashback many episodes ago. Nike is drawn back out of concern for her grandmother, although it appears to have been a false alarm. What is yet to be seen, though, is if this false alarm was the result of poor communication or if something more dastardly is in the works. By the looks of things, it would seem the latter, especially with the interaction between an unknown character and Nike’s grandmother. Despite all of this, Nike and Livius’ relationship does seem to grow deeper in this episode (that kiss scene!), and it will be interesting to see how that relationship holds up against whatever trials await them in this current arc.
A Christian Perspective:
Throughout this show, every arc seems to have had a purpose for character development: either for drawing Nike and Livius closer together, or for fixing something in Livius’ life. It’s possible that Nike has personally benefited, but off the top of my head I can’t remember anything. Actually, I suppose it’s mostly been about Livius’ change of character and the deepening relationship between him and Nike. Anyway, it took trials to get them there: an old flame, a journey through a trapped temple, an old family member with whom Livius had his disputes… at any of these junctures, we could have seen failure, but in the end what we saw was a changing Livius, a growing relationship, and the restoration of a bond (Livius and Bard). You may have already figured out what Bible verse I’m going to use to tie this point together, but here it goes anyway:
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28
The next time life seems to be going through a bunch of trials—maybe we’re being asked to do things that are hard for us, or maybe we need to reconcile with someone with whom we’ve had a bad experience—let’s keep in mind this verse, and the trials that we’ve watched Livius (and Nike) endure. Let’s also remember that we have a God who wants to use all things to work together for our good. The situation might not seem comfortable or favorable, but before we write it off let’s take a moment to pray and seek God’s will in the situation. Let’s press forward in faith, trusting that He has a reason for the situation, no matter how hard or difficult.
Language: 1 “j**z”, 2 “b**ch”, 1 “d**n”, 1 “cr*p” (if you consider it a curse word)
Alcohol/Drug Use: None
Nudity/Sex/Fanservice: Livius says something that prompts a shot of what appears to be a naked Nike (I guess it’s metaphorical, given the previous scene), but all we see is a quick glimpse of cleavage (around 19:39-19:40).
Violence: A character is elbowed in the stomach.