What’s up everyone! Welcome to Beyond The Panel. Coming at you today with talk about Gleipnir! I was waiting for that one episode which was going to put me at the edge of my seat, and there it was last week. This is what it looks like when you are in over your head. A group of hunters where only two people are genuinely capable of battle? A team where only one person has truly proved capable of critical thinking? That is a recipe for disaster, and I felt the anxiousness to see how they would get out of this new situation in one piece.
This episode right here took my stomach for a spin. From the minute this episode picked back up with the situation they found themselves in, I was ready for the worst case scenario to unfold. They were surrounded, two out of three of their strongest were already taken out, and the boss had already struck enough fear in everyone else to make them still in their tracks. How the heck do you get out of something like that? What followed was terrifying because it was never going to be as simple as being given the option to join his search, or die. Something was still going to have to come of what happened to one of Madoka’s guys (Morita). That something was a big twist. They knew what we were going to expect from this confrontation, and decided to hit us with something else that we weren’t prepared for.
Now despite the situation they found themselves in, I’m glad that this week the group proved me wrong that they couldn’t handle critical thinking. Maybe not to the same level as someone like Clair, but some of them are capable of thinking on their feet when it matters most. Now of course this isn’t to say that they don’t have room to grow, because at the end of the day what they lack is the kind of mind which allows them to think like the monsters. That is how you know what will work versus what will not.
With that said, there still had to be some way that this group makes it out of this, and how they accomplished this was clever. When they were given their choices by Madoka, I thought of a lot of ways that this could have ended for them, but never would have thought they would make the gamble they did.
Getting to know where a guy like Madoka comes from was a scene that we needed to better get into the head of the people who choose this life. One doesn’t simply turn away from a normal life to live out in the forest like this. His story was short, but it was also straight to the point. He lived a life that made him feel out of place and good for nothing. Becoming what he is now allowed for the opportunity to connect with people who are like him and valued bonds. It actually caught me off guard that through his story you could actually draw comparisons to Shuichi, Clair, and the rest of the group. All of these people may have different intentions and motivations, but there is never a doubt that when you join a group, you care about the people around you.
The best thing about this episode was that they finally got around to a real conversation about monsters. The one thing we knew before we first jumped into this series was that at the core they would address what makes someone a monster. Up to this point you would have answered this question by only seeing what is on the surface. A monster would have looked like what Elena transformed into, or Subaru, or even Madoka. However, the true monsters are the people behind what they transform into. The real monsters actually look like Clair. It was shocking that at the end of the day, the person you should always be scared of more than anyone else is Clair.
As I said before, I don’t know how they plan to move forward from this. Though it might be better that they all know what they are dealing with, and what is at stake if they make this same mistake twice. “Beautiful Flower” was an interesting choice of words considering what it took to get out of this mostly in one piece.