Posted by psgels on 20 March 2010 with categories: Armed Librarians - The Book of Bantorra



Ah, what an episode. At this point the creators of the anime were standing for a major dilemma that hits just about every series out there: the fact that the story doesn’t fit exactly into 26 episodes. I’ve raged enough about this problem with other series, but with this series, they’re actually pulling it off to put the essence of the final novels into these final episodes without derailing. This series is everything that fantasy and steam-punk should be, and it seriously set the bar much higher for future generations. Even until this episode, it kept an excellent balance between plot, setting, characters, background and action. Each speaking to the imagination.

One of the major pitfalls of mystery series is the point at which questions have to be answered. Asking a lot of intriguing questions is one thing, but it takes skill to make all of eventual answers live up to the hype that these questions created. And this show even proved that these answers kick ass. We finally get a glimpse into heaven, and what it’s like. And we finally get to see the background story that resulted into everything: Ruruta Coozancoona’s. We already could have guessed that the Armed Librarians and the Church were created in order to create exciting books. This episode didn’t just show why this was all done, it also showed the story behind it. That it was all in an attempt to destroy the gods who kept destroying the worlds they created because they were unhappy with the continuous wars.

When you think a bit further, this had some interesting results: these Gods surely were short-sighted bastards. Thanks to Ruruta the world wasn’t destroyed and instead it continued to thrive. The result? A stable world full of actual democracies, in which most of the drama is caused by the guy who took god’s place: Ruruta, and his wishes to provide interesting books in an attempt to bring back his loved one.

The big question still remains however: what the heck is heaven? The people we saw gathered in the theatre: what exactly was their connection? Since the previous governor of paradise was among them, it may be a place where the true men gather: the ones who came closest to Ruruta’s ideals for the perfect book (which would also explain why Hamy ended up entering it even though her hook didn’t appear yet).
Rating: *** (Awesome)

13 Responses

  1. sheratan says:

    Do you remember the episode where Mattalast kinda “feed” heaven with a book?

    The people gathered in the theatre were the books previously eaten by the tree…

  2. |Necromancer says:

    Show’s gonna be 27 eps long if you didn’t know yet.
    2010-03-26 26. Redemption, Purplexity and the Book Within a Book
    2010-04-02 27. The Might of the World

  3. R8 says:

    Colio Tonies?!?!

    Colio’s back, awesomeness. And it looks like he has an important role to play.

  4. 4saken says:

    Ruuta is a Book Eater like Zatoh. Those people are now inside Ruuta just like Enlike was inside Zatoh in the 2nd arc.

    And I wonder, Enlike took control of Zatoh’s body, can Colio do the same thing?

  5. Suu says:

    Like Sheratan said, it seems like there isn’t heaven and what it is is just the pit of Ruruta’s belly in a way similar to Enlike’s situation. He ‘seems’ no more godlike than a librarian.

    @4saken: Interesting question C: Or if not Colio, maybe Hamy since she seems to have infiltrated “heaven”?

  6. Suu says:

    I’m surprised so many people enjoyed this episode so much though. While I did find the ideas interesting and the storytelling well played for the series, Ruruta’s reasoning is kinda simple in a way we see very often with these sort of (beautiful) tragic villians. Lose a loved one, destroy the world. Although I give him creative credit that it was a little more logical than most since he isn’t righteous or revenging as much as following his love interest’s desires. But, I felt she was rushed too. She was kind of just your flat typical goody good girl, yeah? (without the depth of Volken/Nolty) She didn’t seem to do much significantly even, and I felt her character changed too fast to join the god’s perspective, even while she was abused.

    Still, Bantorra does take a very different approach for anime and it’ll be interesting to see how they plan to carry out an ending based on what’s happened so far and to see the last questions solved.

  7. PhantomX says:

    This isn’t exactly the same though. For one, it was implied that Ruruta lived far from a normal life, meaning he’s likely incapable of rational decisions. He was always set on one purpose/goal, so he has a one-track mind. Nieniu was nothing special, I agree, but she gave him another perspective, gave him choice, and, since he’s not really capable of worldly thought, this affected him a lot.

    Also, she didn’t just change her viewpoint. It was my impression that she’d already died, and Ontorra decided to revive a corrupted form of her in order to get to Ruruta. What’s interesting is that someone mentioned him feeding Nieniu the books, or something along those lines.

  8. Babini says:

    I thought this episode was rather disappointing and dare I say lame. Interesting that some loved it.

  9. jmaster5 says:

    This episode had some interesting points and i felt it was adequate they did pack an entire backstory in 1 episode i found it impressive the way they did things

    Also i dont believe this girl was supposed to be anything more than flat she was just there to give Ruruta a new look on life

  10. Suu says:

    I don’t know, I found Ruruta a lot more shallow than simply a one-track mind, and more your typical “noble hero angsting over the weight of the world”. I have nothing against really simple/niave characters, but in that case I sort of wish they’d have played it up a little and given him some personality. Like I said I feel like Nolty and even Volken who I didnt even like managed to be really effective. Maybe just having some more time elapse in their story would’ve made the difference. Or perhaps they just seem dry/personalityless in a sea of much more colourful characters.

    Aa, and I do understand Nieniu’s significance to Ruruta and the storyline, just not how she was effective really in any other way so I think we’re about even there. I hadn’t thought about her from the viewpoint of a corrupted revival though~ That does make it a lot less random. C: Thanks for clearing that up for me.

    I still gotta say this is one of my least favourites though. It had its moments but it seemed to me sort of run of the mill and melodramatic at the base of things. It’s only because of Bantorra’s unique elements that it stood on its own to me.

  11. MsteaK says:

    Found it too melodramatic as well. Especially since there is no sympathety, considering Ruruta feels awfully superficial to even care for his character. If Bantorra had more episodes, they could’ve made his background more interesting. Damn time contrainst. Stop cramming large stories into only 26 episodes, it’s annoying and a waste of potential.

  12. PhantomX says:

    Yeah, I can see how people might not have found it as great as older episodes.

    I’ve been thinking on it more, but doesn’t it seem like these Book Eater people aren’t capable of multilateral thought? The one Enlike took over was also a tool of the people (in this case the Church), and the only thing he could do was think of absorbing books and killing/following their orders.

  13. Slick says:

    Man, I just couldn’t fully get into this anime series. I would’ve liked to have seen more of Colio and possibly have him become someone really important. Everything seemed to be jammed together into 26 episodes.

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  • Bam
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 09:55 AM)
    Or as we Persians call it “Yalda’s Night”.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 09:55 AM)
    Happy winter solstice y’all!
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:47 AM)
    Though Aidan this is your chance to throw up a full review as a blog post that isn’t for an ongoing series.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:37 AM)
    Wait, ha I’ve figured it out, most of his work I couldn’t give a toss enough to get immersed in the plots either. Though yes I got immersed in Saya, which really goes to show that if a story is good enough to me I should be able to be fairer and not be too hard on the characterization.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:32 AM)
    Even though his works alienate me with their poor characterization, still still I was able to not care about that issue in Kikokugai and Saya no uta.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:24 AM)
    I forgot to say also a few pages back it needed more action scenes also. I could honestly see myself getting distracted from the thinness of it if there were more.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:24 AM)
    I wasn’t tying Gargania and Aldnoah. Hell Gargania was a step in the right direction for characters. Problem was that Gen only gave an outline. It Gen can’t write characters then he should leave them to other people and just handle story structure and the plot. It worked pretty damn well for Fate/zero.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:21 AM)
    But I’ve got a feeling Juno might not be so bothered by psycho pass 2 I do recall him saying before it aired he gave off the suggestion wasn’t going to come down hard on Tow.
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:20 AM)
    *I’d
  • Emma
    (Monday, Dec 22. 2014 06:20 AM)
    I really wish Juno was here, really would right now because I’ love to see him argue for psycho pass 2 and Expelled from paradise.

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