Getting around to reviewing Fate/Extra Last Encore

Waking up in a strange virtual world with no recollection of the past, Hakuno Kishinami finds himself forced to fight for survival in a war he does not understand for a prize beyond value; the opportunity to have one’s wish granted. With only an enigmatic “Servant” by his side, Hakuno Kishinami will have to face both friends and foes in battles to the death in order to not only gain possession of a mysterious object known as the “Holy Grail”, but also to find answers regarding his identity.

Let’s get down to the main review.

Art

I’d like to say that certain Fate series have a certain “home”, a place that fits them well with the theme they have. For example, Fate/Kaleid does well with Silver Link because they do pretty good with Slice of Life which what Prisma Illya was mostly at the beginning.

Shaft does well with Extra because they really can just go to town on stories with a lot of philosophical questioning and subtleties. It also does help that Wado Arco’s art for the Extra servants is always as beautiful as ever.

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My favorite chapters of the anime so far had to be the Drake arc and the Nursery Rhyme arc. The Drake arc taking place in a large city that’s flashy and with bars and lots of smiling faces and happy people. It’s something that fits the person that Drake is. The Nursery Rhyme arc is pretty much Shaft’s love letter to Madoka Magica through Fate/Extra. Which fits a lot since Nursery Rhyme is essentially a magical girl, Nursery Rhyme and Alice are both voiced by Ai Nonaka, the voice of Kyouko Sakura from Madoka. And the chapter has similar themes to Madoka as well.

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The opening and the ending are also a joy to see as well. Mainly for the opening we rarely see Nero serious in Fate. There’s always a casual or relaxed feel to Nero like she isn’t worried by much. To see her fighting seriously and even getting bruised and hurt during the opening of the anime is a beautiful change of pace for the Nero that’s usually either fighting with Tamamo or trying to seduce her master.

The ending as well has excellent art. One being of Nero and Hakuno and another being of the Master of the Chapter and their servant done to an amazingly beautiful standard. When the Blu-rays come out they would definitely make for excellent wallpapers.

Story

The oddest part of Fate/Extra Last Encore is the story. I’m not saying the story is bad but it’s done in a more atypical style. The story that is progressing every episode has its own story but the backstory is very murky and confusing. We’re clearly shown things like Hakuno’s Deadface and Rin in general that seem confusing. However things are seeming to come together as of Episode 7 of the series.

According to Rani from the Robin Hood chapter, it’s been 999 years since 2030 and since then Grail Wars have been conducted by the Moon Cell. Dan Blackmore and Alice were leftovers from a previous Grail war. Now as we saw in the 1st episode that Nero fought Twice Pieceman and Saver with Hakunon(the female MC of Extra) and they lost. Then we move to Hakuno with Shinji and Amari and the school scene.

Combine that information with what we got from Rin about Deadfaces in the Nursery Rhyme chapter, we can clearly see that Hakuno has lost Grail war a few times, once with Nero as Hakunon, once against Dan Blackmore, and the one made the promise to Alice and Nursery Rhyme. Whether they all lost is unknown but I suppose so otherwise Twice wouldn’t be alive to make threats at the beginning of the anime.

Spoiler for the Nursery Rhyme Chapter

I had some trouble understanding it so I wanted to help anyone who didn’t get it.

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Nursery Rhyme has two Noble Phantasms, Nursery Rhyme: A Story for Someone’s Sake, and The Queen’s Glass Game:Perpetual Engine Maiden Empire.

When someone enters Alice’s floor, they become trapped in a loop caused by Queen’s Glass Game which continuously resets time to a certain point. Now for Rin, Nero, and Hakuno this was all happening during the first episode(episode 6) while they were being forced to remember or rather to see other loops or the war that Alice and Nursery Rhyme went through while she waited for Hakuno to return.

Now to explain the monster at the end that Alice became at the end. Alice lost to Hakuno by refusing to show up at the assigned time to fight. In a normal Moon Cell grail war the time to fight is set rather than more battle royal like this. So Alice didn’t show and Hakuno got the chance to ascend. However Alice didn’t have enough mana to keep herself going so she started by breaking down some of the environment and then started killing the masters that were trying to go up or down from the third floor.

By the time that this current Hakuno, Nero, and Rin come to the third floor, Alice the person was already dead. According some fans that can understand Japanese, in the credits Alice’s name wasn’t even used. It was just the Monster and Nursery Rhyme. But at the same time the monster is Alice…

because she controls the loops so even if they happened to win, if Alice wanted it Nursery Rhyme would have used Queen’s Glass Game and looped time back to beginning. However Alice didn’t became she believed that Hakuno kept his promise to return for her which ended the loop and allowed Hakuno and his friends to move on.

Characters

I find most of the characters to be interesting. Hakuno is more interesting because of the mystery around him. Same situation for Rin. Nero is adorable as can be.

The only thing I don’t like is the fact there is no Tamamo no Mae. I like Nero as much as the next guy but Nero gets all of the attention. She’s on the covers, the first one they use to advertise Extra, she has her own event in FGO, she literally gets her own form to save the day at the end of Extella.

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There’s no Tamamo love and I want some animated Tamamo no Mae.

So that’s all I’ve got.

So until the next Full Season Review,
Later Days
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