Thursday, March 22, 2018

10 Second Anime - Violet Evergarden - Episode 11

Violet drops into a war zone to write a letter for a dying soldier.

Episode 11 - "I don't want anyone else to die."


I have an odd feeling of not needing to see any more episodes of this show. Not because it's become bad or uninteresting, but because a weekly serial is supposed to be about the characters. Don't let anyone tell you that a weekly show needs a good story to be successful. Moe blob slice of life anime demonstrates that idea is wrong. What you need are good characters where the story, interesting, dramatic, thrilling, funny, or whatever, serves as the vehicle for character development or revelation. If you are watching the show for the story, but don't care about how it affects the people in it, are you really invested in it? Only partially.

Here, over the last few episodes, we're seeing the effects of the adaptation from the novels into a weekly episodic show. The literary device was to use the customers to reveal Violet's character, her past, and how she's becoming more human than the weapon of war she used to be by coming to accept the death of Gilbert, her first love. It's easy to see how in this particular episode, we were meant to discover the deadly reputation Violet had in a recent war that is still smoldering in the country that lost.

Her interactions with Aidan, writing a love letter to the girl back home, were supposed to hint at her own situation where someone confessed love to her, but she didn't have a chance to return the declaration. In book form, I can see how the emotional impact was being set up for when the reader found out Gilbert was dead and Violet, unlike Aidan through his letter delivered by Violet, would not have that chance to return that simple but powerful line, "I love you."

In the anime, Violet has already been through all this, so as a viewer I'm left to wonder, what else is there for Violet to reveal, or to understand, or to accept? Isn't her emotional journey already over? What is the point now of seeing Violet's finished development echo as these latter clients bounce against her story?

My main feeling is of impatience, because there has to be a point, another direction for Violet to go, and I'm not seeing it yet. Her journey can't be done because the season isn't over yet, right? I hope I'm not expecting too much for the last couple of episodes. Perhaps the hint of a direction lies in the episode title, voiced by Violet herself to the family of Aidan, "I don't want anyone else to die." We saw that she didn't kill any of the enemy soldiers, which was remarkable considering what we saw her do in flashbacks. I'm still impatient, though.


Yay for continuity! When Violet went back to where Gilbert died, soldiers manning checkpoints said that some extremists were agitating against the peace treaty. Here it is, later in the season, and a full-blown civil war has broken out.

Hodgins can't send a Doll to the front lines. Why, it's as if we didn't know we have a super soldier veteran working for his company...

Violet sure has an independent streak for a former soldier. She just takes off for wherever.

The bar scene was supposed to show all the ad posters Claudia sent everywhere for his Memoranda Doll business, but all I saw was this bar wench signalling someone else about the cards this other guy had.

Of course this Aidan guy likes his childhood friend. It's called "boobs." Pettanko neighbor girls never win at love. Just sayin'.

So, Leidenshaftlich, which sounds like Northern Germany or Holland, is in the South where it's warm (c.f. Iris) and this country in the North looks like Russia, or Prussia.

Shouldn't this Southern Memoranda Doll be cold. Duh. She's a Winter Soldier too.

These pilots for this air delivery service are pretty gung ho. Good for them. I like them.

Guh. The whole platoon taken out by sniper fire and mortars. Aidan is the sole survivor, naturally.

Ha! Paratrooper! And of course this is how the light novels reveal the badass reputation of the Maiden Soldier of Leidenshaftlich. We've only been seeing Violet "on fire" for 9 episodes or whatever.

Ha, again! They give up on the spot after figuring out who Violet is.

They didn't show this previously. Violet can memorize letters by "typing" them with muscle memory.

Interesting how a dude from a European style country believes in reincarnation so that he comes back as his parents' son. Nice sentiment, but very Buddhist.

Maria, childhood friend ftw. Also, boobs.

Violet is fully empathetic with this guy and the family later. She gave a start when he mouthed the words, "I love you." And she even kissed his brow as he died because he wanted to kiss Maria.

Damn you, KyoAni, still making me cry.

Hmm. Violet is having a hard time accepting the gratitude of Aidan's loved ones for bringing back his letters. She's sorry she couldn't bring him back alive. There's still some struggle between being a soldier and a civilian for Violet.

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