A slightly less interesting episode where it mostly focused on something that I was already very familiar with. While not as satisfactory as a concluding episode compared to Alice’s episodes, it did leave a lot of interesting questions to be asked moving forward. According to the news, Last Encore is going on hiatus after Episode 10 airs and will resume its presumed finale after a couple weeks. I have no idea why this is but I’m not going to bother questioning it.
So let’s get a move on.
Deadface Hakuno meets with the actual Hakuno from the previous war where the latter shows our protagonist how her fight with Julius went out. The fight itself wasn’t important but the importance of Nero’s ideals and demeanor is what is put on show for us. So if you didn’t already figure it out with most of the new Fate audience getting into the series with Extella and/or FGO, the Saber that I’ve been calling Nero for the past 9 weeks is Nero Claudius, fifth and last roman emperor of the Judio Claudian Dynasty. Because some people actually have a tough time discerning Fate lore to real myths and history, the actual Nero was indeed a guy, just in case any of you are actually confused. Hakunon goes over the circumstances of Nero’s death and how it drastically belies her disposition as a cheery and confident individual. While Deadface Hakuno seriously doubting his legitimacy and right to even take part of the grail war, Hakunon cheers him on that he’s perfectly qualified and that Nero wouldn’t ever think light of him. The vision ends and Hakuno exits the video room.
Rani turns out to be alive and well and finishes treating both Nero and Hakuno back to normal. Hakuno awakens first and Nero regains consciousness in great joy to see Hakuno alive. Hakuno immediately set things straight about his thoughts and says that the quest to get to the cage is for nought and says he’s not worthy as Nero’s master after just being told the opposite. Nero does the exact same thing and gives him a lecture that no matter what Hakuno “was” and “isn’t” that fact alone makes him his own unique individual. Nero sets things straight and Hakuno is given a new sense of purpose to not have Nero guide him to the cage, but for them to get there together. As the scene fades out, Rin and Rani overhear the entire ordeal and suggests that something is going on between them.
Nero’s NP makes quick work of Li and Hakuno is somehow able to best Julius alone. Julius curses them as he fades away, saying that Hakuno will end up just like he did. Nero and Hakuno prepare to ascend while Rin and Rani converse with each other on the nearby rooftops that they fulfilled their mission to get Hakuno to the sixth stratum. They mention the notorious floormaster of the next stratum but Rin states that she’ll tag along the duo for a bit longer while Rani stays behind.
I’ll be honest with you, I don’t particularly care for Nero’s backstory since it’s something I was already exposed to. I doubt anyone didn’t know her true identity at this point but me being the cynic I am, I doubt people actually knew anything about the actual Nero. Being the history buff that I am, I wasn’t too particularly moved nor did I really empathize with Nero at any point other than just some eccentric figure who made a small mark on history. I will admit that Nero’s outlook in Extra and beyond is why I favor her over Artoria but I always say that I wouldn’t have minded it if Nero was kept as a man but I guess they were too scared of repeating Gilgamesh. At least with this over with Hakuno can finally stop being such a literal stick in the mud.
Anyways the fights, like always, were a let down. Domus Aurea completely annihilates Li and apparently having “hope” is enough for Hakuno to beat Julius despite the fact that this guy is also a Dead Face but a trained assassin when he was actually alive. I can’t really justify this aside from Hakuno just having that much motivation but oh well. Rani being alive surprised me but Lu-Bu’s figure from last episode basically clued me in on it. Her working with Rani was somewhat expected despite the game forcing you to choose one or the other and whatever they’re planning involves getting Hakuno and Nero to the sixth stratum. That leaves us the important question on who the hell the sixth floormaster is going to be and why this duo was formed.
If I didn’t already mention it, I found the artist for those really elaborate ending images. I wasn’t able to really find the chance to upload them but you can bet your ass I’ll be all over those come the series review. Well that and the fact that Berserker Li looks silly as hell so I went with this endcard.