Hello everybody and welcome to our next exciting episode of Violet Evergarden, the show about a girl looking for love and being loved by random people up in a mountain. You know, one of those types of shows.
In our last episode, instead of getting a follow up with the confrontation with Major Gilbert's Brother, we instead have Violet, as well as several other AMDs, go up to a mountain observatory to help preserve some old texts and manuscripts with their fellow transcribers. Violet is paired up with Leon, somebody who has lived there for a long time, and has some resentment towards AMDs and women in general. Long story short, his mother was an entertainer (not that kind) and fell in love with a man while in town. They married, had Leon, but then the father disappeared, as he was tasked with collecting texts and it wasn't always safe. The mother went out to find him and never came back, leaving Leon to himself.
During the two weeks together, Leon starts falling for Violet, but comes to recognize that she is actually in love with somebody else, even if she doesn't understand it herself. Still, she continues to grow, and thanks to her list, helps Leon grow as a person, too. But will this help Violet understand the meaning of "I Love you"? And will we get a proper resolution with Major Gilbert's brother? Let's tune in and find out.
-Our episode begins at a play, where two actors overact quite badly. Going to mark this low on my Yelp review. We see Erica is in the crowd, who is enraptured by the play, with Iris next to her, looking rather bored. The play reaches it's final line, with the crowd giving it a standing ovation. Well, I guess having a play so shortly after the war, anything will be good. Still, two out of five, would not recommend.
-At the post office, Erica starts talking about the play and says that Violet should have come. However, if they're talking about the play know as the Red Devil (or Red Demon, as the dub calls it), then she's reading it right now. Erica, however, is a bit jealous, because she would have loved to scribe for Oscar Webster, the person who wrote the play. And apparently, Violet is his Doll. Erica herself is jealous, since it means Violet can read the new works first. Apparently, this will be his first work in a while and she can't wait to see how it turns out. Hopefully it'll involve better actors than the last play.
-Violet reaches the last page and says the last line, giving a better read than the guy we just saw, but she just gets blank stares from Erica and Iris.
-Everybody is a critic. After the opening we're in Hodgins' office, handing off the letter requests to Cattleya. It's a rather large number, and it's all thanks to Violet and the love letter situation some time ago. Apparently, she's been getting more requests now. But that's when Cattleya decides to bring up the uncomfortable subject about Major Gilbert. Has he spoken to her about it yet? Nope, because that's a subject Hodgins isn't ready to deal with yet. That fallout will be epic. The reason Cattleya brings it up is through concern, as she notices that Violet is lost in thought lately. Though I imagine she gives that look all the time, she's probably been around her long enough to catch some of the little things Violet does.
-Next, we're on a boat, hopefully not doing a bad rap song, as it approaches the Roswell Region of Genetrix. Violet is here to fulfill another request, and boy, does she have to go far. Her client is apparently living out in the middle of nowhere, living in a house that looks a bit rundown and appears abandoned. Still, Violet knocks on the door a couple of times until she finally gets an answer from the person inside. He looks rather disheveled and appeared that he was going to ask Violet to leave until he got a good look at her and was just stunned. Why, yes, your yard is terrible, but that isn't the point right now.
-Violet gives her usual on the job greeting while this new person takes over narration. Turns out, he requested Violet because she has the same colored hair as the girl he wanted to see again. Okay, I think I don't want to hear his thoughts anymore. And apparently, the name causes him great sadness that he can't speak it outloud. Violet, I know your a badass ex-soldier, but I think this is one of those times you just want to turn and walk away. This guy is crazy!
-Oh, and if you thought the yard was bad, wait until you get a look at the inside. It's possibly worse. The client quickly cleans up a bit, commenting on his own surprise as he wasn't expecting such a child like Violet. Seriously, she does not look fourteen to me at all. Violet takes it as him being unsatisfied with her and offers to have another Doll come. Violet, why are you so mean to your co-workers? The client declines the request. As long as Violet types, she'll do. His health hasn't been the best lately, as show when he grabs a bottle but starts shaking rather badly. Violet reaches over and places a hand on his. But no, she isn't offering comfort. She's telling him not to drink alcohol while they work.
-...Oh, right, this is the playwright, Oscar. I have no idea why I forgot about him. Anyway, Oscar says he can't write unless he drinks, but Violet corrects him. She'll be the one doing the writing. Whatever, as Oscar takes a swig and says they'll start tomorrow. Violet, who is very blunt about her opinions, decides to give hers.
-Violet is not interested in taking any of your crap, mister. But she's a professional and doesn't let it linger, asking if they'll be doing the writing in this mess of a room. Yes, or on the terrace, depending on Oscar's mood. He does have a study, but it's a little too cramped. Can't imagine why. In any case, Violet is ready to work and takes off her gloves, revealing her metal hands. In an unusual twist, Oscar is only mildly curious and doesn't give a shocked, horrified expression on his face. He asks what happens and she answers honestly. Still, I get this suspicion that his new main character is going to feature a character that's very similar to Violet. Just a hunch, really.
-We get a time passage shot outside as we see what Violet has done.
-I hope you charge extra for that, Violet. After this, she asks if Oscar has any type paper. Nope. She needs to go buy some at the store at the port. Oh, and he wants dinner, too. Oh, the hours that Violet will be charging this guy. Though any thoughts of that are quickly dashed by this comment from Violet.
-And this is what happens when you request Violet. She is a no-nonsense type who will listen to your requests but won't go beyond her operating parameters. Too bad Oscar decides now is a good time to fall asleep. And Violet is actually getting agitated by him. Shocking, I know. So Violet ends up going into town, getting the ingredients for dinner. Except she has a problem.
-It's going to be one of those days, isn't it? So the store owner explains it to her, but she's still just as confused, so sometime later, she actually gets instructions, and back at the house, we see her preparing the meal. Turns out, she kind of sucks at breaking open the eggs. It's fine. Not everybody gets it right initially. Oscar shows up, confused, and finds out that she's giving her hand at cooking. This is either going to go really well or really bad. Though we see the meal and it looks normal, but it's all in a lump. Still, Oscar gives it a try and decides to give it a passing grade. Though he wonders why she isn't eating and asks. She'll have something later. Oscar stares at the empty chair in front of him, looking sad and a bit lonely. Violet stares at him, noticing the look, and is probably trying to determine just how difficult he will be.
-Sometime later, Oscar is going through his cabinets, looking for something. We see that he found a bottle of alcohol, hidden behind other items. Violet goes to confront him, and when he asks where all the alcohol went...
-First, well done, Violet. Second, why are we going with this shot? It makes her look like a horror movie villain. Finally, she would be the worst person to be marooned on an island for Captain Jack. Anyway, as far as Violet is concerned, Oscar getting drunk is bad, because it'll hinder the writing process. Also, drinking alcohol in excess is not good for his health. She then takes the bottle she apparently missed out of his hand, telling him that she will keep these in her possession. Oh, Oscar, you are in for a world of pain.
-And so the writing process begins, but we catch it in the middle. Oscar is reciting the lines to the play as Violet diligently types away. Looks like we're going with another fantasy play. Oscar also gives the stage directions and other side notes to Violet. If anybody has read a play script before, you know exactly what these are. Violet, of course, is totally in for this play. In the play, Olive, the main character, needs to cross a burning valley to get to a sword, so a water spirit will come by to help out because why not? Though that sounds like a Deus Ex Machina, to me, but maybe Olive helped out the water spirit before. Oh, right, Violet. She's really into this play and comments about the last line, glad to know that Olive will be able to cross it. Hooray!
-Anyway, the burning fire is extinguished, but Violet asks how that will happen? Well, if the red cloth acting as the fire gets pulled in, then there you go. Violet understands, getting a little insight into how this all works. During this pause, Oscar asks for her opinion on the play so far. Honestly? Even though she didn't go through it, she feels like she's experiencing it. Hey, if you can pull in the viewers, you're doing the job right. Violet finds herself feeling much like Olive, the main character, who also happens to be female. Geez, I can't imagine why that's the case.
-Violet explains all the emotions she's feeling when listening and reading, but can't understand why. Oscar smiles, though, but he's gettin the best kind of compliment, and explains to her that she's feeling what Olive is feeling, that she's beginning to identify with her. She feels empathy with Olive. And after that, Oscar is relieved that she feels that way. This is his first time writing a play meant for children, which is probably not an easy task. Might also explain why the Water Spirit just show up out of nowhere. Violet, who's totally informed this story and asks what happens next? Well, seems like, during her travels, Olive will lose her power to speak with the spirits. Violet is shocked, shocked, I tell you! How will Olive return home? She already lost her boat, after all. Wow, to make Violet feel like that, Oscar must be quite the playwright.
-Still, Violet's question gets Oscar thinking. He hasn't actually come up with that part yet. This is unacceptable to Violet. He must come up with the answer, or else Violet can't return to her waiting father. Though this comment seems to have an effect on Oscar, who looks sadden. Still, Violet presses for an answer, but Oscar doesn't give one. He stands up and takes a look outside. Damn this weather! It's too good! He apparently went outside at some point, which seemed like a very weird cut. Weren't they inside just before? Do not do what you guys did with Beyond the Boundary, what with it's confusing cuts, okay? That is not acceptable!
-Violet joins Oscar, holding a small parasol in her arms, asking what it is. Oscar answers, but makes me wonder why she asks? Because it's beautiful to her. And now we get a sudden flashback to a girl holding that parasol. After experiencing this random flashback, Oscar decides to take a little break. He'll need to go find his secret, secret stash. Except Violet already found that, so he just wallows in sadness and pity inside of his room, staring at a picture who's face is blurred out. I'm sure that won't be important later.
-Oscar stares outside, seeing Violet playing around with the parasol because why not? This triggers a flashback for Oscar, with a young girl who looks suspiciously like a younger Violet in the same parasol proposing to show Oscar one day. But this isn't a happy memory for him as he storms out of the house and yells at Violet, knocking the parasol out of her hands. He tells her to stop, but as she begins to apologize, he decides that he's had enough and tells her to go home. Yeah, no, Violet doesn't like this for one simple reason.
-I'm glad to know where your priorities lie, Violet. She's also being rather vocal about this, too, which is unusual to see from present-day Violet. She wants to see Olive's story complete, but then asks Oscar what he's hiding from her in his heart? This gets him to stop as she says that she's unable to sense the feelings of another person and apologize for any rudeness she may have done. We get a long pause as Oscar looks guilty, then to the parasol, then back to Violet. He admits that he can't write anymore, but can't let it end like this, either. No wrier worth his salt would ever leave a story unfinished... unless it was really, really bad. then you just rewrite the whole thing all over again.
-But this is why Oscar wanted to do this play. He wanted to finish the story he told Olivia. Oh, so that's who his main character is. Violet is confused at first, but we learn that Olivia is actually Oscar's daughter. Dun dun dun! After a cut that seems like a good place to put in a commercial, Oscar explains that, after losing his wife to illness, he moved here with his daughter. I originally had a theory that Olivia was actually Violet, but that theory is shot immediately as we see the color of Olivia's eyes. They're brown, while Violet's is blue. Then again, it isn't unusual for a person's eye color to change. I used to have green eyes, now they're this grey/bluish color.
-We get shots of the two living together here, which was their summer home. Oscar believes she was sad in not having a mother, but she never showed it. But rather, she would always help her so she can focus on her work. He then adds that his daughter's favorite things were silly frilled parasols and waterbirds. In a flashback, Olivia sees a waterbird skim the lake and she admits to being jealous, wanting to cross the lake, as well. She wonders if she can try walking on the leaves floating, but Oscar says that only if the wind carries her with her parasol. Suddenly, a gust of wind comes in, nearly blowing the parasol out of Olivia's hands. Oscar worries for his daughter, but she says she's fine. But she will cross this lake one day and promises to show him. Cute daughter is cute!
-Though it appears all good things come to an end. For you see, Olivia herself was also sick and possibly dying. Against the advise of the doctors, Oscar brought his daughter back here, to be happy one more time. He was happy to see her smile again, on those quiet, warm days. In this flashback, we see a weakened, but smiling, Olivia, sitting beside her father on a bench, looking out towards the lake. She then closes her eyes and rests her head on his shoulders, never to open them again. This is symbolized by her fading away, leaving Oscar truly alone. Does everybody Violet has met have a tearjerker backstory?
-In the present, Oscar asks why God took away something so precious to him? And as you expect, this hits close to home for Violet. We see her clenching her fists, and on her face, we see her shedding tears, knowing how sad and painful it is, but only now learning the true meaning behind such feelings. Later that night, Violet is in the guest room and tries to eat the Emerald Brooch again. Why is that a character tic for her? But there's a knock on the door. It's Oscar, and he came to apologize for his actions earlier that day. Violet says it isn't his fault, for she was the one who lost her composure. I know, that seems weird, but if you think about it, she did. She really, really likes that story.
-Oscar vows to finish the story, that Olive will reach home and reunite with her father. No matter how difficult the adventure, she will get her happy ending. As a result, both Olive and the audience will be happy. As long as the story makes sense, that is. But Violet is all in for this. The next day, Oscar is getting to the ending as we see him and Violet outside, enjoying the nice day. Still, they are nearing the ending, but Oscar is at a loss. How do they get Olive home from here? Violet suggests taking a plane. Lady, this is a fantasy story. What madman includes planes in a fantasy story?
-Still, Oscar isn't totally against the idea. It just needs to be more imaginative. Violet looks out to the lake and sees the birds there and suggests "Maybe she can turn into a bird and fly home?" This actually helps out Oscar a lot, but in a different direction. Oscar suggests that she can fly using a parasol, but Violet remarks that one cannot fly with a parasol. Sure, in reality, but this is fiction and we can do anything, so long as it makes sense. Here, the wind spirit will appear to Olive one last time, telling her to open her parasol. He gets Violet to open up the parasol they have there, continuing the line from the Wind Spirit. Violet is totally in for this.
-With that, Olive is able to return home and reunite with her father. But he lingers on what the first thing they say when they're reunited. Oscar goes through a couple of lines, with Violet suggesting she has writer's block again. And she won't be bringing out the sledgehammer again to help. Still, Oscar feels like he's on a roll and needs help, so he instructs Violet to help him visualize it. And if she can, to walk on the fallen leaves. She gets right on that. No! Wait! He wasn't being serious.
-Oscar gives chase, but Violet looks posed to cross the lake with the parasol. Oscar stares at her, a bit confused, but then we see Violet take her run and leaps into the air, visualizing the last bit for Oscar.
-Though I have a different work in mind when I see this. As Violet makes her leap, Oscar hears Olivia promising to walk across the lake one day. And Kyoani shows off once again.
-Granted, it's in slow motion, but all those colors! But seeing Violet, who looks a lot like his daughter, causes Oscar to tear up, wishing he could hear Olivia say those things to him a thousand times more. He recalls her birth, her first steps, her first stuffed animal, the parasol, them spending time together, all the way to her final moments. How he wishes for her to have grown up, to live, something she wished for. In his mind, Olivia reaches out to him, giving him that warm, knowing smile, before leaving once more. As for Violet?
-A ninja you are not, Violet. Still, that was an impressive leap. She asks if Oscar was able to see it, but he's too busy being a blubbering mess. Yeah, the remainder of the session is going to be quite difficult. In narration, Oscar says that, after granting him this miracle, he told her that he didn't believe there is a god, but if there were, it would be you. Yeah, let's not try ascending anybody to godhood quite yet, okay? Okay.
-At the port, Violet is returning to the post office, but Oscar is seeing her off. And he has a gift for her. The parasol that belonged to his daughter. She's a bit surprised by this, but laments that she couldn't fly further. But Oscar was satisfied with what he saw, because she was able to fulfill Olivia's wish for one day. Violet lingers on this for a moment, but the sound of the horn on the boat means it's time to leave. Violet gets into business mode and thanks Oscar for using their AMD service, but like with Leon before, she has a smile on her face. And with that, the two part ways, as is the case for an AMD and their client.
-On the boat, Violet is in her cabin, lost in thought. As she closes her eyes to sleep, she recalls the words from Diethard from a couple of episodes ago. Hey, we're actually going back to that! Maybe. Because in a flashback, Hodgins is telling Violet that her body is on fire and she doesn't realize it, because of the things she did. Though what's interesting about this flashback is that Violet is in her Doll getup, which is what she wasn't wearing when this scene took place. When she tries to deny it, Hodgins stops her, saying that she'll understand one day. And the background change to that of a battlefield, filled with the bodies of the dead. There, she stares at her hands, covered in blood, but is then covered up hand, causing her to wake up.
-Awoken by the dream, Violet clutches onto the Emerald Brooch, calling for Major Gilbert, recalling their final moments together. She asks herself if she's allowed to live after killing so many? Hasn't she taken so many "one day" wishes? She breaks down, head in hands, lamenting that those very same people also had loved ones. Oh man, she's cracking and it's going to be bad.
-In a conversation with herself, Violet, in her head, says she isn't burning, but present day Violet says that she is. They argue like this for a moment before present day Violet says she can feel the fire spreading across her body from all the things she's done. Oh dear. I hope Hodgins gets to her first before something terrible happens.
-Back home, Violet gets off the port just in time to run into Lady Evergarden, who is happy to see her. Violet is in a sorrowful mood and apologizes for her past actions, for it was never her attention to offend her. Lady Evergarden says that she doesn't have to apologize for anything, but she's thankful to see how far she's come, and she's sure Gilbert can rest in peace.
-...Wait, what? Violet lingers on the "rest in peace" line. Oh, this was the worst possible thing that could happen. At the post office, Violet storms Hodgins' office, catching him by surprise. She is furious, though she doesn't actually show it, accusing him of lying to her. She demands to know the truth, if the Major is safe and alive. She wants to know that he's alive, right? Oh, Violet, this is going to end so badly for you.
-Hodgins finally admits that Gilbert isn't alive. At the Final Battle of Intense (seriously, that's a city name?), they found Violet alone on the ground under a church. It's likely that Major Gilbert pushed her away right before it was bombarded. While they didn't find his body, they did find his ID tag under the debris. As a result, he's listed as missing in action. Oh, so he may not actually be dead, then? That works for Violet, though. Hodgins, however, doesn't want her to keep her hopes up for something that likely isn't true and tries to get her to see that, but Violet is so far gone that she refuses to accept or understand that. Like how she could be the only one to survive? The Major was there with her to the end.
-Hodgins, trying to provide some comfort, reaches out for Violet, but she doesn't give him the chance. Instead, she runs out of the post office, running off to who knows where. Our end card, which usually has the last line from the person who spoke it last, is instead blank. Cue credits!
Well, this was an emotional episode, wasn't it? Though I think the visuals, combined with the music during the leaping scene, played a major factor in that. And also, the truth finally comes out that Major Gilbert is... missing in action and presumed dead. Violet, however, who decided now was the perfect time to have a break down, just heard the one thing she didn't want to hear at all. This will likely have terrible consequences for her, even when we're only halfway through the series! I guess they realized that they couldn't actually drag this out for a full season. I wonder how they'll resolve this and finish up the series?
And as we're halfway through the series, I have a question for those that have joined me this far. What show would you like me to do after this? Normally I have another show lined up at this point, but the one I had planned won't be released until next year. With that, I don't really have another show for now. As such, I'll take suggestions, though I'll add two myself.
One show I can take a look at is Futari wa Pretty Cure. The very first season, actually. I see a lot of people talk up the franchise itself and I decided it want to take a gander, though there are technically only two I can watch legally, and only one of them seems to remain intact with all episodes, which is the first season, which is on Crunchyroll.
Another show I can try is Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans. I never actually finished this series, and I've kinda wanted to see if I can. It's actually kind of weird because I think the only Gundam show I've watched to completion was Gundam Wing. I even have Gundam X but haven't even taken off the plastic for it yet.
But if anybody else has any other suggestions, I'll be more than happy to see if that's possible.
Until next time, remember, when you need to help visualize a scene, make sure to make it as accurate as possible, even if physics says otherwise.