After a “thrilling” lesson about demons from King, a boiling rain happens upon the Boiling Isles, which Luz thinks will be a good time for Eda to teach her some magic, though she ends up too tired from putting up a barrier to protect from the rain. Luz uses some shiny bribery and gets Eda to finally teach her a spell: creating light. Seems simple enough, but Eda ends up only having the energy for one practice run before collapsing back to sleep. And it might be impossible for Luz anyway due to her lack of a “bile sac” that is supposed to be near the heart. King agrees to help her learn the spell if she promises to listen to his talk on demons.
King theorizes that some potions Eda drinks might be the source of her powers and so sneaks one for Luz, but she ends up spilling it. Suddenly, a monster breaks out of (and then into) the house, leaving Eda’s bed trashed. King things this might be the Snaggleback, a legendary demon, but it actually turns out to be Eda herself, who needs those potions to keep a curse at bay. There IS a snaggleback, but he’s just a pink ape with a shell.
The Eda monster can only be stopped with light, but all the lights in the house are out, forcing Luz to try and learn the light spell as fast as she can. Luckily, her camera caught a symbol at the end of her recording, which then allows Luz to copy it in order to start making light spells. This knocks out Eda long enough for her to be given her potion and return to normal. She reveals that she was cursed to turn into that creature every so often, but needs her potions. And now Luz can do magic! But Eda dreams of the one who cursed her, who looks to be shrouded in shadows.
You ever watch something and just get the sense that it’s only a series of events happening that don’t really mean much? Well that’s the feeling I got from this episode. That’s not to say that things didn’t happen in this episode that serviced the overall arc of the show. I’m sure that learning about Eda’s curse and who gave it to her will very likely be revisited and explored later on. It’s just that the way it was balanced here with this week’s episode makes the overall theming of it seem rather frayed, which seems to be a pattern with this series overall. We have Luz needing to be more interested in King’s teaching about demons, Luz trying to learn magic without a special organ, and Luz trying to fight a giant monster without Eda’s help or guidance. All of these feel like they would work as the premises to probably pretty good episodes on their own, but feel pretty crowded in this one.
I couldn’t help but feel like the story was just going “and then” a whole lot instead of “therefore”. That still happened of course, but it felt so slim a connection and more like things that just…happen. Luz records the brief lesson, therefore she picks up the signal…but was that there before? And tracing it apparently is enough to make the spell work? So what was the point of bringing up the bile sac? Is Luz going to grow one by using magic? What are the side effects of those? Eda’s curse also feels pretty out of nowhere too, maybe better saved for once their teacher-student relationship is better defined.
Still, it does at least push things forward, if only a bit. Luz has learned to use magic, even something as humble as just creating a bit of light, while Eda finally gets some of her backstory revealed and ACTUALLY TEACHES SOME MAGIC SOMEWHAT! I can’t say I’m super intrigued about the identity of Eda’s curser, plus the reveal could have probably set up better and over a longer period to build suspense, but we have what we have. We’re about at the halfway point (or at least based on the revealed episodes so far for the season), so I’m hoping things will quicken up in pace and exploring the rest of the world, though we do have another season on the way for us to do that. Still, I’m of the mind we should get to that sooner rather than later.