The assault has fallen and it CAN get up!
Sylvie gives the adventurers their next assignment; this time requested by the Mage’s Association for really realsies we mean it this time. The quest is just getting a bottle of wine to a nearby village but it pays surprisingly well, but Rem wants to pass on it and avoid owing Celeste any favors. As Diablo and Shera get ready to leave, they are stopped by the Level 50 Warrior Emile Bichel Berger (Clifford Chapin), who is ostensibly the strongest warrior in the guild and a little beyond the acceptable side of chivalrous. He’s yet another person who sees Diablo as some sort of slave trader and wants to duel him for their freedom. Diablo is craving a proper fight, so he’s game, but the girls explain the situation before things get out of hand.
After filling the quota of fanservice for the episode, they reach the village to find the guards in a panic. They’re awaiting an incoming invasion of Fallen, creatures Diablo remembers in his game as boss characters, not something you’d see in droves. Knowing the human militia will be wiped out, he commits to protecting them with his power. Soon the monsters arrive and start getting picked off one by one until their wishy-washy commander, Edelgard (Kristi Rothrock), decides to settle things personally.
Back with Rem, Celeste arrives to properly apologize for Galluk’s actions last episode and to let them know he’s been let go. She’s also here to inquire about Diablo being an actual Demon Lord. The Association has never known of one coming from another world as he claims, so the only conclusion is that he’s a Fallen himself, drawn to Krebskulm’s power inside Rem. Having known him for a few days AT MOST, Rem feels confident that this could never be the case. I mean, he nibbled her ears that one time and foreplay isn’t an available skill set if you play that faction.
And because this party wasn’t fun enough, Galluk returns in a rambling bloody mess and then stabs himself with a knife from Hot Topic, turning himself into a Fallen. Or possibly having his body possessed by one, it’s a little unclear.
Okay, this is more like it. The better portion of these action/harem shows do tend to have at least some aesthetically pleasing action, so it’s nice to see this one start to get down to it. We’ve certainly seen glimpses of it in the previous fights, but now they’re in the forefront. Edelgard has “next member of the Diablo fan club” written all over her, along with her prominence in the Opening as well her design (contrast this with Emile who is entirely covered in armor and definitely NOT joining the harem), but otherwise she and the pig-snake guy who possessed Galluk seem to be our first big examples of the Fallen’s might. Splitting up the team allows us to see twice the action at once, as well as give Rem a chance to show off her abilities without Diablo around to intervene.
There’s also a bit more development for Diablo, both involving how people are reacting to him as well as for how he’s reacting to the world. It’s clear by now that this version of the world differs from the version in his game in increasingly odd ways, particularly with the weaker than normal warriors and increased and rampant appearances of the Fallen. What this all is leading to and how it ended up sucking a guy like Diablo from another world is…unclear, but they keep reminding us about it, so it must be important, right? We even get to see his apprehension over everything waver a bit when he understands Shera is actually concerned about him, which is apparently rare for him in his world. I don’t honestly expect this to go anywhere, but his big trait before coming here was hating seeing people in couples, so maybe this will be brought up again to show him moving on from that?
The other is Celeste’s suspicion of him being a Fallen because of his mysterious origins and circumstances. That would be the logical conclusion, considering those are apparently the strongest beings they know of and Diablo is stronger than them, but I really hope that gets properly debunked sooner rather than later. Or maybe he is a Fallen and that’s the twist. Who knows!
But yeah, this was a step in the right direction, but it’s still at pretty expected levels for this sort of story. Same ol, same ol. Though average is better than below average…which is probably the attitude that brought this middle of the road derivative piece of mediocrity into existence. Still, at least I can’t be disappointed, and isn’t that the greatest perk of all?