English Dub Review: Radiant “Those Who Hunt Heretics -Inquisition-”

The Inquisitors Who Don’t Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie.

OVERVIEW (SPOILERS)

While lazing around at the café and foreshadowing the next arc, Yaga tells Seth not to assume all Inquisitors are automatically bad people, though he means that generally in terms of people. There are likely well-intended Inquisitors just like there are ill-intended sorcerers.

Meanwhile, with Captain Dragunov’s group, one of his troops begins doubting his ability to lead because his lax nature isn’t living up to his expectations. He thought joining the Inquisitors would be about hard-fought battles fighting sorcerers, but it’s just been sitting around and maintaining the ship while their captain fishes and reads. After a sudden storm, they connect with Captain Edmund’s forces, who have been attacked by a flying Nemesis (hey, remember those?). Edmund also happens to be carrying important cargo: imprisoned sorcerers he and his team have captured. At least, he SAYS they’re sorcerers.

Edmund asks Dragunov to help him repair his ship while his men recover from the attack, nearly convincing the unnamed soldier to get reassigned. However, the Nemesis that attacked Edmund, a giant narwhal-looking thing, passes by them and heads towards a nearby city. Edmund is more than willing to let it go after innocent civilians since he’s only in this job to fight sorcerers, but Dragunov objects, mobilizing his men to destroy it, regaining the respect of the soldier. Sadly, we don’t get to see the fight, but we do get the catharsis of seeing Edmund arrested for imprisoning innocent people just boost his reputation.

Dragunov is puzzled by something, however. They weren’t able to kill the Nemesis, only sink it, but it had a grievous wound on its wing before they got there. The one who made the wound, a bandaged sorcerer who calls himself Grimm, surveys this and makes his way to Rumble Town.

OUR TAKE

Another week, another episode of Radiant spinning its wheels. This time, it’s yet another mostly solid story that feels premature and just makes me wonder why it’s placed here. Villain episodes are usually something I look forward to, seeing how it turns the usual dynamics and roles of the protagonists and antagonists around to see things from the bad guys’ side and learn more about why they do what they do. In this case, it’s hard to say if Dragunov even qualifies as a villain at the moment, since this is only his second major appearance in the show and it’s to show he’s actually not that bad a guy.

The Inquisition, like the Bravery Quartet, seems like a neat idea on paper, but then turn out to not be that interesting once they’re being written in anime-original episodes. They’re the opposing force to sorcerers and capture them solely because of their connection to the Nemesis, but also (apparently) fight the Nemesis too, only it’s more difficult because they can’t use magic like sorcerers. Putting aside the added disappointment of having this be only our second encounter with a Nemesis that’s done in off-screen (which is A LOT to put aside), these potentially intriguing studies of what drives people to work for this side over others feels pretty wasted.

Plus, it doesn’t even feel like Dragunov’s episode since he isn’t technically the protagonist, his doubtful soldier is. Despite the fact that the outcome of this sort of episode has been done to death, it was kind of nice to see there is a bit of a layer to Dragunov’s methods so he isn’t so bad as to kidnap innocent people…but I don’t just want a good bad guy to play off the BAD bad guys, I want an antagonist with understandable and complex motives who I want to be taken down but still am interested in seeing progress until he is inevitably stopped by the hero. And right now, maybe due to the comic not getting far enough yet, we do not have that in Dragunov.

Okay, great, he’s not that bad, but then…who is the threat here? I guess it’s those other Inquisitors that are with Torque, but it’s been over a month since we’ve seen them. Without a proper antagonistic force, there doesn’t seem to be much, if any, momentum in this series currently, and that’s just continuing to hurt it with each passing week. I can only hope that next week’s filler will be the end so we can finally get back to some semblance of tempo.

Score
4/10

David Kaldor

Green Lynx (David Kaldor): Aimless 20-something given a paid outlet for his thoughts on cartoons. Fears being boring slightly more than being outright disliked.

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