5 Point Discussions – Record Of Grancrest War 3: “Battle Flag”

by Sage Ashford

Theo and his army face off against the King of a neighboring land!  And is Siluca’s successful planning doing far more harm than good?  Remember, if you like this article and 5 Point Discussions, please share it on Facebook or Twitter! It really helps. And if you’ve got any comments or questions, please hit me up @SageShinigami.

1. Thus far in this Not!Fire Emblem series, we’ve seen the following RPG classes: Knights, Lords, Mages, and Archers…but no Clerics? Well, this week fixes that by introducing Priscilla Farnese, a member of the Order of the Crest. Hearing of Theo’s benevolent rule, Priscilla comes with a group of her fellow clerics to join the group. Immediately though, Siluca waves them away in a scene that’s reminiscent of how modern people tend to treat door-to-door religious folks.

I’m not sure if Priscilla is trustworthy yet, but I do like how there’s a bit of a dichotomy here between the two schools of thought. Clerics apparently have found a way to take the magical crests that pronounce barons and kings as feudal lords, and seem to believe all crests come from God. Meanwhile, mages find that a load of crock and acknowledge that it comes from chaos…something the Order believes to be a twisted way of inserting more chaos into the world, as mages are addicted to the power.
Given that episode one saw Siluca power up Theo’s crest by making him fight a chaos monster…I’m not sure she’s wrong yet? Sure Siluca has good intentions, but can the same be said of every mage? Also, speaking of intentions…

2. As the group welcomes the healer into their party, Theo and the others spend time going over plans going forward. Lassic starts talking about the ease with which they could conquer neighboring lands, but Siluca then explains that it’s not Theo’s purpose to become yet another king seeking to conquer everything in sight. Instead, he has a simple desire of liberating his home land of Systina from the corrupt Rossi royal family. At that mention, she then suggests that Theo take on the family name of a royal hero of his homeland Cornaro, as a way of letting his intentions be known to his people in Systina when he finally returns home. From there, she starts to talk about her plans to help Theo and it seems like she has things all planned out.

…The problem is, her plans are so well-laid that people are starting to see Theo for being a puppet rather than a proper ruler. He’s not just taking Siluca’s guidance as advisement, he’s following her words like he has no thoughts of his own. It’s a geniuine problem not just in-universe but with Theo as a character…right now, he doesn’t HAVE a personality beyond well-meaning dude”, and we’re at the point where that’s going to be an issue if it keeps up. When Siluca realizes what she’s been doing she becomes apprehensive, realizing that though she’s only been trying to help, she hasn’t taken Theo’s thoughts or feelings into consideration.

3. Still, before Siluca can address the problem with our hero, they’re forced to deal with something else: a Chaos Disaster. Chaos Disasters seem to happen in areas with high concentrations of chaos (which these lands are definitely suffering from, per the first episode), and this time it’s created a particularly high-level problem for them to deal with: a fire dragon made of pure magic, known as a Salamander. This show is not afraid to steal liberally from your nearest D&D manual and I love that. Most of the time “new” creations just get written off without respecting the work that goes into them, so why not take an old idea and see if you can give a new spin.
Along those lines, Theo tries to actually fight the Salamander with his normal sword and fails miserably. Even other characters present call him an idiot for this, and you can only hope that as the show develops, he starts to become a more capable person. His nobility is inspiring, but he barely comprehends how to rule, and is pretty garbage as a fighter right now. Still, Siluca beats the Salamander by…y’know…splashing it with water, which causes it to explode violently. Siluca gets distracted helping to defend Priscilla and a man that was affected by the chaos, so fortunately Theo was around to defend her at the last second. He’s at least good for that, I guess.

Apparently, Siluca knows “da wei”.

4. In the aftermath of the explosion, Siluca passes out and wakes up almost a full day later. She finally has her conversation with Theo about doing things without ever speaking to him, and in doing so becomes one of the best anime characters of the season. All too often, characters relish their negative traits as much as their positive ones, whether because the writer’s too lazy to make them grow, or because their negative traits are what make them attractive to fans. Fortunately here, Siluca (who’s already awesome) experiences a bit of growth and agrees to include Theo in future decisions. But again, there’s no time to get too sentimental as the party has to now deal with the King of Savis that they’re trying to declare independence from.

There are a lot of great moments here in the last third of the episode, starting with Theo saying that if they can’t find any allies, he’ll fight the King’s army all on his own until all the people he’s inspired in these three episodes all agree that he’s someone worth fighting and dying for.

He inspires not only his fellow soldiers, but his own townspeople, leading to him promising to fight alongside them and creating a flag for his people, just before they wind up in battle against the Savis army. It’s a surprisingly bloody fight scene, with random mooks getting beheaded, and even being sliced clean in half! They don’t shy away from the horror of war, even if they could stand to go into detail on how war affects the actual soldiers more.

5. The end of the episode sees Siluca going to see her adoptive father, head of the mage organization that’s joined up with the Queen of the Fantasy Alliance. She seeks to have Theo’s Army ally with them, but it seems both the queen and her father have…different plans. Despite Siluca being obviously more powerful than most of the people she goes against, it’s great that the series sees her continuously butting heads with forces that are harder and harder to overcome with force alone every episode. Currently, much of her plan hinges on being allowed into the Alliance, and thus all sorts of things could go wrong in this next episode, as she’s entirely in the hands of people far more powerful than her.
Record of Grancrest War is available on Crunchyroll.

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