Hey everyone! We’re back with another exciting episode of Arslan Senki: Fuujin Ranbu! Last week, the second season opened with a fight between Tūrān and Pars, Hilmes being Indiana Jones trying to get a legendary sword from a tomb, and Andragoras escaping his prison.
So, where do I even begin with reviewing this episode? I’ll try to be as concise as I can without letting my feelings get ahead of me because it was just so–!! Ahem, okay.
The episode begins with an amazing show of strength and wit by King Andragoras, who we saw previously has managed to get himself out of prison by taking Prince Guiscard hostage. He escaped Ecbatana with his wife Queen Tahamine using a wagon, managing to fend off pursuers on his own WHILE driving the wagon. Then, to completely lose the enemy, he threw Guiscard off the carriage with much gusto. I also gotta commend the horses because they managed to drive themselves for a bit while Andragoras threw the younger prince off. All in all, we finally saw the majestic king of war in his element once again: killing. We could also see that’s he’s quite thrilled at the idea of getting his army back to reclaim Ecbatana.
After the opening song, we’re shown the Tūrān army, finally revealing their King, Tokhtomysh. He scolds his generals on failing to take Peshawar Fortress. Of course, they have their own excuses on why they didn’t succeed. Then, a report comes in: apparently one of their generals, Jimsa, was captured by Pars but he managed to get out, bringing intel with him as well. With something this valuable, they proceed on planning their next steps to try and retake the fortress. At the back of my mind, knowing Par’s tactician, Narsus, I was wondering if he intentionally let Jimsa escape with information, or maybe not because it’d be too predictable? We can only see what happens.
Tūrān forces advance once again against the mighty Parsian fortress and show their might. King Tokhtomysh provokes Arslan, who is widely known to be a kind-hearted prince, by taking some villagers, lining them up in front…and, you guessed it, kills them mercilessly. This part was quite heart wrenching! I was actually hoping that something would happen to stop the killing, but nothing…so we had to watch that depressing thing. So did Arslan, of course. Tokhtomysh succeed in riling up the young prince, who rushes out to stop them. Daryun was about to chase after him, but Narsus, ever the clever one, had faith in what Arslan would decide to do, which he believed would either get them past this obstacle, or leave them stuck.
I was so proud when Arslan handled the provocation well, because we could clearly see how he’s growing to become a fine ruler and warrior. Even though the killing before him was tragic, he didn’t flinch and cower, but responded to the challenge of King Tokhtomysh. The crown prince assembled his men and went out to fight the enemy forces valiantly. We could see that he’s a still bit rash, but definitely much better at fighting now. He also has his loyal men at his side to support him. While not hesitating to kill someone is not something to be proud of, it is a life or death situation on the battlefield, so it can’t be helped, and surely Arslan finally came to terms with this ever since the Battle for the Keep of Saint-Emmanuel. And!! And!! And!! He fought the enemy king head on!! There was no sense of fear or doubt! Of course there’s a great difference between them, experience and might-wise, but Arslan managed to parry most of the attacks! I couldn’t be any prouder (so I kept screaming–ehem). Like I mentioned though, there’s that difference, so Arslan was still about to be defeated, but Gieve, our dashing travelling musician appeared and saved the day (and so much more screaming ensued from me)!
Meanwhile, apparently I was right about Narsus letting Jimsa getting the intel on purpose, because Pars completely outsmarted them. Jimsa was planning to ambush the covert team traversing the woods, but it was a trap! Their forces ended up killing each other because the covert team was actually just horses with dummy riders. That’s our clever Narsus, always the man with the plan!
So with a failed ambush, outsmarted, outnumbered and overpowered by the Parsian army, Tūrān had no choice but to retreat again. It was a swift victory for Arslan and his team!
Afterwards, we’re shown three kinds of kings. The first one is Arslan as a benevolent and wise ruler, who commended Gieve for his report about Hilmes and his search for Rukhnabad. He also gave special praise for the person who distinguished themselves in the recent battle, who was Tūs. As Daryun mentioned, this will inspire the army because they’ll see that their hard work is noticed, no matter how inconspicuous.
The second king is King Tokhtomysh, who is surprisingly killed by his own man, Ilterish. His command to retreat, and current desire to parley with Pars was viewed as unbecoming of a warrior of Tūrān, and so he was killed for it. We now have a usurper in our hands.
King Andragoras is the third king, managing to finally make his way to Peshawar. I thought we were going to have a nice reunion between family and that the king would finally be proud of Arslan! He’s apparently just really proud, period. He turned a blind eye to the fact that it’s Arslan who kept Pars existing this long, and instead, accused him own heir of, most likely trying to take the throne by unlawfully commanding the army, because only the king can do so. So, Arslan was commanded to leave and form an army of 50 thousand men, which seems nearly impossible! It’s basically exile as Daryun mentioned! Gee, Arslan risks his own neck, suffers through different hardships, fights to reclaim Ecbatana to save his parents, matures into a fine warrior, and this is the thanks he gets? I’m so done.
This whole episode had me feeling 80% amazed, 20% frustrated, which is a good thing because it certainly got me hooked. Every part was intriguing and exciting, and there was never a dull moment! The fight scenes were amazing and well-choreographed, and the animation is still consistent! The story is certainly getting good! It had me on the edge of my seat all throughout! And, from that last part, we have an idea on what the rest of the anime will be about, if Arslan really does have to recruit people. If so, I do hope that he proves his father wrong and that he quickly gets back with lots of people who are loyal to him, supporting him to his claim on the throne.
I think that…
The anime will certainly get even better from here on out! I’m looking forward to more exhilarating fights, plot-twists (c/o Narsus and his strategies), show of loyalty and support from Arslan’s team, and more character development for our dear crown prince! Although, remembering that we only have 6 more episodes left for this season is making me quite sad, so I’m hoping they’ll never waste a minute to bring us interesting developments!
See you again next week with our third chapter “Journey Horse, Sad and Solitary!”
Anime Official Website : http://www.arslan.jp/
Original Comic Official Website : http://www.shonenmagazine.com/bmaga/arslan
Anime Official Twitter Account : @arslan_anime