With the immediate threat of a rampaging dragon behind us, this week’s episode returns to the entire series’ instigating scene and asks the question: Just what happened to cause Euphie’s stereotypical villainess denouncement back in the first episode?
If you’ve experienced your fair share of villainess stories, you know that the heroine is rarely the cliché kind-hearted girl she’s supposed to be. Most often, the “heroine” is an evil master manipulator hiding behind a veil of innocence. However, that is not the case here. Instead, she seems to be an unwitting pawn more than anything else.
Going by Anis’ explanation, Lainie is part monster and subconsciously uses charm magic on those around her. This causes them to view her as the typical innocent and helpless heroine who needs to be fawned over and protected. What’s interesting is that Lainie has had at least some idea of her powers. She noticed people would befriend her too quickly—to the point that it caused conflicts around her and even resulted in her getting bullied. This caused her to try and keep to herself, but she nonetheless attracts people like flies.
It’s a good bet that her ability is activated in response to stress. Thus, the more she wanted to be left alone, the more stressed she became when anyone approached her—in turn, they imprinted on her hard. And after becoming a noble and being forced into an unfamiliar social situation, it’s almost certain she is stressed out all the time—meaning she’s been charming everyone non-stop.
This has certainly been true the few times we have seen her. At the party, she’s center stage for a denouncement she wants no part of—and her charm makes everyone pity her instead of the belle of high society they’ve all known and respected for years. Then this episode, in the throne room before the king, she looks highly uncomfortable, and everyone is quickly put under her spell (except for Anis, who can fight it off). With all this laid bare, it’d be easy to think the whole villainess denouncement was an accident caused by Lainie’s powers running wild… if it weren’t for the final scene of the episode.
This episode highly implies that Algard and Count Chartreuse know about Lainie’s powers—that they have been using her to further their agenda without her knowledge. And this makes sense. Algard is desperate to outshine his sister—yet he lacks the natural talent and charisma to do so. However, with Lainie around, all he has to do is keep her uncomfortable and frame his plans so that they seem to be in her best interest to get even his rivals on board. Of course, for this to be the case, he would need some way to be immune to her charm, so it’s pretty convenient that the Minister of Magic is on his side, isn’t it?
All in all, this episode does a lot to further the looming conflict between Algard and Anis. It hints that Algard is already long past his breaking point when it comes to his sister and is not some fool in love but rather a man on a mission. It also fleshes out the “heroine” of the story and sets up the potentially traumatic encounter between her and Euphie. We’ll have to see how that turns out in the next episode.
• So, the tattoo transfers the dragon’s magical energy from its magicite into Anis… This seems like a terribly reckless idea.
• Poor Euphie, left on the sidelines to wait at home.
• Anis fears her mother, but I wish we could learn more about why this is.
• Inferiority complex, thy name is Algard.
• It was nice to get a bit of backstory on Tilty as well—and her semi-antagonistic attitude with Anis is doubly interesting.
• The episode does a pretty good job of showing just how insidious Lainie’s charm ability is.
• It also shows, potentially, how much exposure to it warps a person (if Lainie’s father is anything to go by).
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Richard is an anime and video game journalist with over a decade of experience living and working in Japan. For more of his writings, check out his Twitter and blog.
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