HomeEntertainmentTVThe Eminence in Shadow 2nd Season ‒ Episode 29

The Eminence in Shadow 2nd Season ‒ Episode 29

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Pictured: A completely normal level of happiness.

While the recently-completed economic arc is arguably the weakest one in The Eminence in Shadow so far, it seems that there has been at least one good thing to come out of it: Cid deciding to do some serious introspection. Even though Cid’s goal is unchanging and all-consuming, he has never really sat down and thought about the best way to attain it. Instead, he’s simply been ad-libbing through his second life—using every event he stumbles into to act out various cliché Eminence in Shadow scenarios.

However, in the last arc, that completely blew up in his face. He temporarily gave up on his usual Shadow persona for a secret agent role, didn’t get any of the rewards he was aiming for, and (to the best of his knowledge) made his friends so angry at him that he had no choice but to run away. Obviously, something needs to change, and Cid is determined to figure out what that is.

Cid eventually decides to be more serious about working towards his goal—i.e., to help set up major events that would never happen organically so that he can appear as Shadow at the pivotal moment. Luckily, the chaos in Rose’s kingdom looks to be the perfect stage. All he has to do is help Rose to take the throne as a tyrant. Then, when she inevitably faces off against the heroes, he can rescue them in a dramatic friends-turned-enemies battle with Rose.

Unfortunately for Cid, things don’t work out with his first couple of tries. Both his jailbreak and time as a soldier end with others in the spotlight and no place for Shadow—and do little to help elevate Rose. Then, he finds out that Rose seems to be giving up on becoming a tyrant queen and is settling for being a bride instead. This, of course, sends him into a frustrated rage, making everything he’s been trying to do pointless—setting the stage for things to come.

All that said, there is something interesting to come out of Cid’s new viewpoint on his dream. While his motivations are as selfish as ever, his new outlook forces him to look outside himself and notice the people around him. This is where the story about prostitute-turned-innkeeper Marie comes in.

There are two ways to interpret Cid’s actions around her. The first is that he has grown a bit as a person—to the point that he at least recognizes the troubles of those around him and will repay their kindness towards him if the chance arises. The second is that Cid’s jealous of the random shadowy guy from the lawless city who saved Marie and wants to show him up by saving Marie from her current troubles.

Truthfully, it’s probably a mix of both. While he’d be loathed to admit it, Cid isn’t actually 100% focused on his goal and never has been. Sure, it’s the most important thing in his life, but that hasn’t stopped him from helping more than a few people—notably the Seven Shades, Iris, and Rose. The trick is, however, that Cid needs an excuse to justify doing what he knows the right thing to be—a reason that an Eminence in Shadow would do these things. If he finds one, he helps. If not, he doesn’t. And now that he is more aware of the people around him, we’ll see if this marks a new stage in his character growth or not.

This episode also serves as the introduction to a new central character: Number 559. While the Seven Shades clearly match up with several of the standard anime character archetypes (Alpha is a kuudere, Delta a muscle brain, Eta a quiet genius, etc.), 559 adds a new type to the mix: she’s a yandere, pure and simple.

Through her, we see the mindset of someone healed by Shadow but not involved with him personally, like the Seven Shades. Alpha and the rest spent years of their young lives at Cid’s side. While they may see him as a genius among genius—a man they can only dream of catching up to—they still view him as a person. The same can’t be said for 559. To her, Cid is more a god than a human—an all-knowing, all-powerful being who chose her specifically to be his sword and do his will on earth. She is a fanatic on a level even beyond the Seven Shades. She will do anything for him—not only what she is ordered to do but also anything she feels would further his cause.

Until this point, 559 has seen herself as one of the chosen—the only member of Shadow Garden outside of the original seven to be blessed by Shadow himself. The idea that Rose was also chosen yet is not only weak in physical strength but also weak in willpower is anathema in her eyes. If Rose lacks the conviction to kill her mother at the drop of a hat for Shadow’s sake, then she is not worthy of the blessing they both received.

The introduction of 559 adds an extra wildcard into the mix, leaving Rose forced back into the life she had abandoned while someone far stronger than her wants her dead. With Cid’s misguided machinations and Shadow Garden’s plans at work, we’re headed for a chaotic and exciting action climax as the season nears its end.

Rating:



Random Thoughts:

• The healing we see in this episode is far beyond anything we have seen Cid perform before outside of “Healing Atomic.” Even healing Yukime’s back the first time, he left a scar. But here we see 559’s severed arm completely regrown—which makes me wonder. Was it Cid who regrew her arm, or did she regrow it herself using his energy?

• And yes, in case you were wondering, 559 is my favorite character after Aurora.

• I didn’t expect to see scenes from the original web novel in the anime this week! What a nice surprise.

• In this week’s Kage-jitsu!, Beta and Zeta are unfairly hard on Delta.


The Eminence in Shadow 2nd Season is currently streaming on
Hidive.


Disclosure: Kadokawa World Entertainment (KWE), a wholly owned subsidiary of Kadokawa Corporation, is the majority owner of Anime News Network, LLC. One or more of the companies mentioned in this article are part of the Kadokawa Group of Companies.



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