This episode of Little Witch Academiafocused on another one of its quirky cast, and it was immensely enjoyable! Not only did it give them more time in the limelight, but also developed their relationship with Akko! It also gave us a bit more background regarding how witches are treated by other people, and a sneak peek on just what Professor Croix is doing. If the previous story was more on adventure, this one brought in the action!
Japanese Original Episode Title:アマンダ・オニール・アンド・ホーリー・グレイル
Every time we saw them together, Akko and Amanda just always seemed to be bickering. That’s why it was quite nice to have an episode focused on their hijinks, like invading a prestigious school! And it wasn’t just any other school, but the all-boys school that Andrew attends, Appleton Academy! It was just really looking for trouble! Well, you know our gung-ho protagonist, always so determined that she doesn’t really let those things stop her from reviving the Words and reach Chariot! However, it looked like it wasn’t just Earl Hanbridge who hated witches, but the whole student body!
Infiltrating Appleton: If only Amanda hadn’t dragged Akko to check out the Holy Grail before Akko could ask Professor Ursula about it and the fifth Word, then that whole fiasco wouldn’t have happened in the first place! But, I guess all’s well that ends well, huh? Akko and Amanda got closer than ever and the students of Appleton became less hostile to witches! We even got to see Amanda as a guy, and a good-looking one at that! It fit her looks and personality totally well! She got to go all out too. She didn’t hesitate to show off her energetic and snarky attitude, something she usually can’t do in Luna Nova without getting reprimanded. Well, yeah, she did get in trouble for that, but she had a very good reason for doing so, right? Being surrounded by pompous jerks will surely get anyone’s blood boiling after all!
Encountering Andrew: Of course, this was unavoidable, as the girls were trespassing in the school he attends! However, I totally didn’t expect that he’d defend them more than once, even though I was hoping for it. My shipper heart couldn’t help but yell once he and Akko started interacting again! Sure, they were still disagreeing with each other when it came to their point of view, but when the situation needed him to help her and Amanda out, he seemed to be always ready. He actually didn’t have any reason to intervene once Louis figured out that the two girls were witches in the beginning, but he did so anyway! I’d love to believe it’s because he already thought of Akko as a friend, although it could also be just because he didn’t want any huge fuss to arise. Don’t even get me started on the end; they looked so cute looking at each other as they parted ways! They totally murdered me with that! Ehem. In any case, it was amazing to see Andrew supporting Akko while still holding on to his beliefs. Hopefully in the future she’ll manage to get through to him so he stops viewing himself as his father’s robot, only doing what’s expected of him.
The Duel: You gotta admit this was the main event of the whole episode, yeah? A duel is totes better than getting tortured – at least you get a chance to defend yourself. And boy, did Amanda kick Louis’ butt! Plus, as she only used her magic to change her appearance to a guy, she was still in her body, so no one can use the excuse that she was physically equal to Louis that time just because she was a guy. She beat him fair and square with her own strength and technique! I mean, the girl pole dances on her broom for crying out loud! That’s strength right there! Even just the fact that she managed to go head to head with that possessed suit of armor and defeat it (with a little help of magic) is already enough proof that Amanda is one awesome gal!
Croix’s Experiment: We found out previously that anger gives off the most powerful magic. So was Croix just looking for an opportunity to test out her newfound discovery? Or was she looking for an opportunity wherein Akko was also involved? Guess we’re just forced to discover more as the story progresses. It was disappointed that Akko didn’t recognize those cube thingies. They looked distinct enough as not to be confused with anything else. She already saw them multiple times before, especially during Croix’s debut!
Themes & Trivia
Initiative vs. Expectations: Once again, Akko’s and Andrew’s ideals clashed, this time more clearly. Akko believed that she should pursue something because she wants to do it, even if no one expects her to. Meanwhile, Andrew believed that he has no choice but to do what’s demanded of him, what’s been decided for him since the start. No wonder they couldn’t get along on this! Even Louis was just following in his father’s footsteps, but at least he had the guts to admit the truth and defend the witches, though he knew his father didn’t like them. Amanda, on the other hand, helped Akko out on her own, even though the latter didn’t technically ask for her help. It was more for Amanda’s enjoyment that to actually help though.
Arthurian Legend: As Appleton Academy seems to be located in Britain, it perfectly fit to have references to some parts of King Arthur’s legends. One example is the Holy Grail, which is one of the key items in the stories. It’s often described as a vessel that provides eternal youth or infinite sustenance. The Black Knight was also probably referenced to the same character appearing in different instances in Arthurian literature.
Hooded masks: These things worn by the students who apprehended Amanda and Akko seemed to be what’s called a capirote. They’re part of the uniforms of some brotherhoods in Spain, usually worn during reenactments and events on Holy Week.
This was quite a refreshing episode for me, in more ways than one! We got a really cool fight scene showing off Amanda’s athletic prowess, she built her friendship with Akko, and the adventure gave her a reason to stay put in Luna Nova! The setting was outside the school once more as well, giving us more background on the world beyond it and its culture. Last, and one of my favorite aspects as you might’ve guessed, we got to see Akko and Andrew together again! The last time we saw them breathing the same air was Episode 10 so you can probably understand why I’m elated! But, even if that last bit wasn’t included this week, Amanda being in the spotlight was more than enough for this episode to be one of the coolest!
Everything else aside, anyone curious what the problem with Diana’s family is? I wonder if next week’s installment will be about that. Surely they didn’t just throw that info in for nothing, right? We’d better hold on to our wands and brooms then, in case we’re up for an intense story!
What did you like or not like about this episode? Where there things you wish we got to see? Share them below! Check out our Spring 2017 reviews too! They’re a huge help if you still want to try out a few other anime!