Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)
After a recap episode, and two commentators thoroughly breaking down what has gone on, Youjo Senki is seen with new eyes and understanding as it picks up where it left off.
Episode Focus: The Battle of the Fjord – Tanya
While Tanya foresees a long war going into the spring, one general is vehemently against this. He wants things wrapped up within three weeks for the amount dying is starting to become a statistic. Yet, Tanya doesn’t see how his desires can be brought into reality. In fact, she mocks all his grandstanding and his condescending attitude since she has experienced the front lines, much less on the western theater, while the man who she debates with lives in luxury.
But while that man maybe the only vocal one who wishes for the war to not drag on, he isn’t alone. Leading to the reason why Fjord is so important. The Entente Alliance is just barely holding on but it still has strong defenses across the front lines. Also, the winter weather did seem to give them some sort of advantage as the Empire seemed to be running low on supplies in the north. However, with Tanya’s battalion dispatched to destroy the gun emplacements which impede the Empire’s navy, it seems to be the beginning of the end for the Entente Alliance. For with Tanya’s battalion not only destroying the guns but the mage battalion which was supposed to protect the area, it seems their capital is soon to fall.
I must admit to myself that anime which deals with politics and war I find some difficulty in following. If just because nothing new can be done when it comes to battle. The only thing which can be done is shocking us with an unpredicted defeat or leaving us with a gaped mouth when we see the horrors of war. Which isn’t Youjo Senki’s thing. We do see blood and dead bodies, but gore isn’t what this show is about. It’s about strategy and Tanya’s mind being sharper and her mentality borderline sadistic.
But one thing which never clicked with me was the idea of Tanya being evil. Has she been stern to the point of being cruel, yes. Does her reputation certainly garner her being a noteworthy enemy soldier? Of course. But I never saw her as evil. Just someone who desires efficiency. Mostly because this show has made all of the soldiers we have seen just another body. I mean, even with how Dakia was handled, that was a swift defeat of which there were no notable people who died. Making the violence and even Tanya creepily using a child’s voice to follow war regulations, more so about strategy than an act of being evil.
Leading to perhaps the issue I’ve had with this show since the beginning: Outside of Being X, Tanya is the only noteworthy character. Yes, Viktoriya exits and Rerugen has been consistently seen throughout the show, but I feel they haven’t been built up at all to make the possibility of their deaths significant. For I think, out of all things, that would be what could break Tanya. For, based on what we saw in her past life, it seems she has only thought of herself and her future. So with her seeming like the type of leader who now jokes with her subordinates, and has some kind of comradery with them, I think what could break her, and truly make her a person of faith, will be developing close relationships. Especially since, something just tells me, one day she is going to pray and not receive a blessing. Leading to her needing to be saved and someone likely dying in the process of rescuing her. Which, to me, will be the moment when this cold hearted character shatters and her walls collapse. For while I understand what the two commenters said, I do think being forced to work with people and develop relationships which are mutually beneficial is the driving force behind her changing. Not to discredit what the jewel is doing, but I think having to think about her battalion and the country she fights for, instead of just her own well-being, is what will get Being X what he desires.