What is this mind-fuckery? Chotto shocku desu. (“I’m a little shocked.”) Granbelm has managed to surprise and shock me with its twists and turns more than anything else airing this season. I think that’s really impressive, and I think the storytelling in Granbelm has been masterfully done. I’m sad that we’re drawing close to the story’s ending. This show has definitely won its place among those “mahou shoujo that looks cute but is actually dark and heavily psychological” shows. Most of those shows are edgy shit, though, compared to how Granbelm has been. (Of course, no matter how good Granbelm is as a dark show with cute girls and magic, it can’t every replace the 9.6/10.0 masterpiece, Madoka Magica.)
Anyway, let’s move onto my notes about the characters and events in episode 10. What happened with Kuon? I explained in my last episode review that Shisui planned to make Kuon a mage through a long and risky plan. In the the end, however, combining with the remnant of her sister’s soul made Kuon a overconfident. She seriously damaged Suishou’s mech, and to finish her off, stabbed her in “human” form. However, the magic that Suishou had been absorbing throughout the battle protected her. She wasn’t killed or even hurt by the knife, and simply turned it on Kuon, killing her.
But wait, you say, why did Suishou suddenly have the the power to absorb so much magical energy? Well, it’s not really sudden, in a sense, because Suishou’s specialty has always been absorbing the power of others and using it for herself. In the previous episode, Suishou’s old mech was destroyed and replaced by one with a different form and powers. It’s been said many times that Magiaconatus favors/loves Shingetsu, but It also holds Suishou in high regard, and is responsive to her wishes. If Magiaconatus could create a complex nonhuman being (Mangetsu) just to make Shingetsu happy, then of course, It could also give Suishou a new mech with magic-absorbing properties.
Now let’s look at Shingetsu and Mangetsu. I didn’t predict that Mangetsu was a doll, and certainly not one created for Shingetsu. I thought, honestly, she was going to turn out being Magiaconatus’ incarnation and the only one qualified to win Granbelm and defeat Shingetsu, who wants to erase magic for good. But if what Suishou surmises is right, then Mangetsu is not an incarnate god of magic, but a mere doll controlled by Magiaconatus, and not qualified to ever win Granbelm. I thought Mangetsu’s shock and horror were well done as she became aware of her real nature, and as her existence became vague. I felt her sadness and pain when she cried so much near the end.
Speaking of the end of the episode, it was also surprising. I thought Shishui would have died along with Kuon. But it looks like she’s is back, having regained her soul thanks to Kuon’s efforts. But I’m sure she must be devastated to have Kuon taken from her — that is, if she’s even allowed to remember Kuon. Magiaconatus is cruel, erasing everyone’s memories of all the mage candidates who lost their lives. Anyway, I wonder what Shisui will is planning to say to Mangetsu?
In other random thoughts, I still love Nene and how smart she is. I’m impressed with Suishou’s powers of deduction as well, and I feel simultaneously entertained and disturbed by what a master she is at fucking with people’s minds. I’m still hoping that Mangetsu can turn things around and prove that she’s capable of fighting and winnning in Granbelm.
And that’s where I’ll stop for today. Thank you for reading! Have a great Sunday!
Score At The Current Point
Art = 7. Sound = 9. Story = 9. Characters: 9. Enjoyment: 10.
Overall = 8.8/10.0
Unless Granbelm is extremely disappointing in its last 2-3 episodes, the series score will remain in the mid to high 8’s range.
Previous Posts About This Series
Granbelm Episode 1 Review
Granbelm Episode 2 Review
Granbelm Episode 3 Review
Granbelm Episode 4 Review
Granbelm Episode 5 Review
Granbelm Episode 6 Review
Granbelm Episode 7 Review
Granbelm Episode 8 Review
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(Images from: Granbelm. Dir. M Watanabe. Nexus. 2019.)