Fate/Zero – 01

フェイト/ゼロ
Fate/Zero – 01

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Fate/Zero - 01At Einzberns Castle in Germany, KIRITSUGU Emiya gets news that his wife Iri has given birth to their daughter, Ilyasviel. Emiya does not feel worthy, but Iri states that even though she is merely a puppet, he has given her so much more and thus is worthy to hold his daughter.  Even though Emiya says he will be the cause of Iri’s death, she is not concerned about that. She vows to stay at his side and help him achieve his goal of the Holy Grail.

Fate/Zero - 01Three years in the past, KOTOMINE Kirei is summoned to a meeting with his father and TOHSAKA Tokiomi. There, he learns that he is a chosen Master for the upcoming Holy Grail War and is briefed on the situation and how he will be aiding Tokiomi to win.  Two years later, MATOU Kariya meets TOHASKA Aoi in the park, where he gives a present to her daughter, Rin. When he asks about Sakura, he learns that Rin’s younger sister has been adopted by his family for the Holy Grail War.  This is because Kariya refused to participate and there were no other Matou family members with magic to fight.

Fate/Zero - 01Kariya returns and confronts his father about this, where he learns that his father Zouken is using Crest Worms to change Sakura. Kariya says he’ll fight in the war and if he wins the Holy Grail, he wants Sakura released. Zouken agrees to this but says that Sakura’s brutal training will continue for the next year until the war is over.  At the same time, in order for Kariya to be ready for the war, he has to also be subjected to Crest Worms in order to be able to use magic better and to be able to take the accelerated training to participate in the war.

Fate/Zero - 01Back in the present, Emiya learns that Kayneth El-Melloi Archibald is in London and teaching. At Kayneth’s mage class lecture, he embarrasses Waver Velvet in front of the entire class for submitting a paper on new magic methodology that would not rely on blood heritage for magic. Leaving the class, he bumps into a delivery guy who has him take a package to Kayneth. Waver first does research and learns of the Holy Grail War, its 60-year cycle in the Japanese city of Fuyuki, and the three founding families — Einzbern, Makiri, and Tohsaka. After his research, Waver realizes this is where he can shine and he steals Kayneth’s package, which contains a relic to summon a Servant.

Fate/Zero - 01At the Tohsaka mansion, Kirei pays a visit to Tokiomi, who reveals that Kayneth obtained another artifact. At the same time, Tokiomi reveals his research into the Einzbern family and their reasons for bringing the assassin “mage killer” Emiya into that alchemist family. Kirei knows of Emiya but was unaware of the non-magical methods he uses to slay other Magi. Meanwhile, Emiya is researching the four known Masters (himself being the fifth) with Iri. Their focus is on Kirei, with his father being the war judge and Kirei being an Executor, or “Mage Killer” himself. Both men study each other and try to figure out why the other would go for the Grail.

Fate/Zero - 01Zouken visits Kariya, who has been chosen by the Grail for the war, though at great personal sacrifice thanks to the Crest Worms. Zouken figures Kariya has a month to live, which Kariya says is enough. As a reward for his efforts, Zouken has a powerful relic for Kariya. Elsewhere, Waver is happy that he was also chosen by the Grail and prepares to summon a Servant. However, the elderly couple he has enchanted into thinking he is their grandson returned from studying abroad notice his Command Spell marks and he has to put them to sleep, wondering if he needs to reinforce his spell on them.

Fate/Zero - 01Back in Germany, Iri reveals the relic her great-grandfather Acht has given to Emiya for the war — the scabbard of the legendary sword Excalibur.  This will almost certainly cause the Saber-class Servant Arthur Pendragon to be summoned by him, which is the strongest of the Servants. Further to that, with a Saber-class Servant, Emiya will be able to use the scabbard’s eminence power of healing and anti-aging ability. However, Emiya is unsure about having such a Servant since Assassin or Caster would suit him best. However, after discussing it with Iri, Emiya suddenly comes up with a plan on how best to use his Servant.

Fate/Zero - 01At the Tohsaka mansion, Kirei arrives as Rin lugs a heavy suitcase. She asks him to keep her father from harm, something he can’t promise since that’s why Rin and her mother Aoi are being sent away. Kirei goes to see Tokiomi, who has the relic of the first snake shedding for their summoning. At the Matou estate, Kariya sees Sakura, who reveals she doesn’t have to go to the bug room that night. He says he wasn’t as strong as her and that he’s going away but promises to return and take her, Rin, and Aoi away to play together like they used to, even though Sakura has been told not to think of Rin and Aoi as her family any more.

Fate/Zero - 01After Sakura says goodbye to Kariya, he goes down for the summoning ceremony, where Zouken reveals he wants Kariya to add two additional lines in order to get a Berserker-class Servant since Kariya is a lower-class Magi. This Kariya does to success and the pleasure of Zouken. Elsewhere, Waver also performs his summoning spell and a Servant appears.  Tokiomi performs his summoning as Kirei observes and summons Archer.  Emiya also performs his summoning, but to his surprise, a young woman appears (Saber), asking if Emiya is her Master.

Thoughts/Review:

And so it begins…^_^

I’m really appreciative to the anime writers and production team.  By starting with an hour-long episode (47:40 in true length), the anime really goes the extra mile to properly establish the Holy Grail War, Servants, Masters, and more.  While it helped that I’d seen Fate/stay night, I believe that I don’t need to have seen that anime nor know anything about the franchise and watch Fate/Zero. That’s a big plus.

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Now, those who ARE well informed about the anime or visual novel series will have the element of being spoiled. For example, I already know who wins this war based solely on the Fate/stay night anime. So for me, this will be a journey of “how’d we get there” rather than “who will win.”

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Speaking of that, there were a few of you who were great at educating me back when I first reviewed the original anime series and I again thank you all for that. ^_^

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To that aspect, the horrors that Sakura went through as a child were bad enough when described to me, but seeing it, even if in limited form, nearly made me sick. How could anyone do that to a child? Its amazing she survived and was still sane after seeing what the Crest Worms did to Kariya.

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Speaking of Sakura, while I liked seeing her and Rin again as children, I thought about how this spoils those who haven’t seen Fate/stay night since Sakura’s heritage is one of the big plot twists in that anime. Well, I suppose it doesn’t matter on the whole. I may have to rewatch that anime after Fate/Zero completes. ^_^

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Which reminds me, for some reason, I didn’t recall Illyasviel being the daughter of Emiya. I guess that had to be mentioned in Fate/stay night but I just don’t remember it for some reason. ^_^;

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In regards to Emiya, I’m looking forward to seeing how Saber does now that she has a Master who is a skilled Magi, unlike Shiro in Fate/stay night.

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I really like how Emiya works closely with his wife Iri when it comes to the Holy Grail War. Well, considering her family’s ties, it makes sense but it comes off rather nicely.

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Anyway, only three Servants summoned with two more Masters not having their Servant’s revealed, nor were the other two Masters revealed. So, more fun to look forward to after a great start to this new series. ^_^

Fate/Zero - 01
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11 Responses to “Fate/Zero – 01”

  1. Lan says:

    yeah im watching this too. not a bad 1st episode but i cant remember much from the 1st series. I didnt really enjoy it that much

  2. Aumanor says:

    “I may have to rewatch that anime after Fate/Zero completes” Don’t. No, really, just don’t. The anime has skiped on about 2/3 of content (almost entirety of the two routes- the better ones)and really messed up with any material not coming from the Fate route. Most of the information you find in Zero will be related to either UBW of HF routes. My recommendation, as well as many of those who commented on your Fate/Stay Night reviews is: play the game, you won’t be disappointed. It’ll explain most, if not all your questions and is VASTLY superior to what you’ve seen in DEEN’s anime.

  3. Aumanor says:

    PS. If you were this horrified at the glimpse of what was done to Sakura, boy are you in for a ride. While Sakura’s treatment at the Matou’s is one of the more sickening things in the series, it is by no means the worst the anime has in stock. Just you wait for Caster to apperar…

  4. Farray says:

    To be honest, I thought the Fate/stay night anime sucked. Too many plot elements of all 3 stories were mixed in. No one I knew personally understood the part with Sakura until I told them, she’s actually Rin’s sister and was only adopted by the Matous. And no one knew Ilya is Kiritsugu’s daughter because it’s not mentioned in the anime(which is basically Fate, mixed with parts of UBW and Heaven’s Feel), they didn’t even know that Ilya is actually older than Shirou(okay that’s understandable, if you have a look at her body).

    Well, I already read the Light Novel, so there won’t be any real surprises for me, but I’m looking forward for the next episodes because Fate/zero is a lot more brutal and darker since all the Masters are, unlike in FSN, adults and (without SPOILERing too much) Kiritsugu is not a douchebag and weakling(c’mon, he is called the Magus Killer :>) like the Fate-Shirou. And I am certain, this anime will be great and I will enjoy F/z just as much as I enjoyed Kara no Kyoukai(f*ck DEEN, hello ufotable ;D)

    Oh, and seeing Saber fight with a good prana supply is gonna be interesting to see, considering Kiritsugu is a more fitting Master for her(or not because… ah never mind), I mean: LOOK at her stats and compare them to her stats with Shirou being her Master O.O (http://typemoon.wikia.com/wiki/Saber_(Fate/stay_night)

    Greetings

    and all of you, have fun with Fate/zero! 🙂

  5. GhostStalker says:

    Yeah, I agree that rewatching the Fate/stay Night anime will not increase your enjoyment of the series all that much, since it doesn’t cover the 2 latter routes which are referenced in Zero. Find a way to play the original Visual Novel, and it’ll be a much more rewarding experience. Trust me on that.

    If you can’t get a hold of the the VN, then there is a completed Let’s Play of the game that a goon from the Something Awful forums did of it like a year ago. You can find it at http://fsn.seorinwastaken.com/archive/index.html. Enjoy.

  6. AstroNerdBoy says:

    yeah im watching this too. not a bad 1st episode but i cant remember much from the 1st series. I didnt really enjoy it that much

    It had weaknesses, but I liked it.

    Most of the information you find in Zero will be related to either UBW of HF routes.

    That reminds me, I have the Fate movie I never bothered to watch. ^_^;

    My recommendation, as well as many of those who commented on your Fate/Stay Night reviews is: play the game, you won’t be disappointed.

    I’ll have to find it again in light of my recent computer disaster. ^_^;;;

    PS. If you were this horrified at the glimpse of what was done to Sakura, boy are you in for a ride. While Sakura’s treatment at the Matou’s is one of the more sickening things in the series, it is by no means the worst the anime has in stock. Just you wait for Caster to apperar…

    Wow. Well, something I’ll have to look for. ^_^;;;;

    And no one knew Ilya is Kiritsugu’s daughter because it’s not mentioned in the anime(which is basically Fate, mixed with parts of UBW and Heaven’s Feel), they didn’t even know that Ilya is actually older than Shirou(okay that’s understandable, if you have a look at her body).

    OK, that’s why I didn’t remember. I’m thinking someone may have mentioned it in comments but I didn’t go back to see for sure.

    I’m looking forward for the next episodes because Fate/zero is a lot more brutal and darker since all the Masters are, unlike in FSN, adults and (without SPOILERing too much)

    Actually, that was something I was going to mention. Fate/stay night was mostly teenagers fighting, which is typical for anime. So yeah, it is different to have a group of adults doing battle, especially since some are married with families.

    If you can’t get a hold of the the VN, then there is a completed Let’s Play of the game that a goon from the Something Awful forums did of it like a year ago. You can find it at http://fsn.seorinwastaken.com/archive/index.html. Enjoy.

    Thanks. ^_^

  7. Ferian says:

    “That reminds me, I have the Fate movie I never bothered to watch. ^_^;”

    Seriously, don’t. Read the VN. The movie just jumps from one fight scene to another without ever bothering to make sense and just spoils the events of the whole route without caring for proper foreshadowing or the atmosphere.

  8. AstroNerdBoy says:

    *lol* Well, it isn’t high on the list at the moment so…

  9. ghostbeetle says:

    I mostly enjoyed Fate/Stay Night when I watched it a few years ago. I thought making Arthur a woman, was inspired and I quite enjoyed the star-crossed romance aspect (thats just how I roll 😉 and the basic shonen-ness of it: boy becomes hero, meets lots of girls.
    But I have to say that I always found the whole grail-war thing a truly f**ed-up mess, a concept that never made sense to me in any way, and that was never reacted to and treated by the characters in the story in any way I would call commonsensical. If there’s a game that you cant win, no matter what you do, I would have expected an intelligent, belivable character to start asking questions like “why” or “how come?” and “do we have to play?” or “can we, maybe, change the rules?” but none of these things are adressed in the story with anything other than alibi-answers. Frustrating doesn’t even begin to cover it. And when you add the fact that the anime team tried to condense several different ‘routes’ into one coherent story – well its amazing they came as close as they did, is the best I can say about that.
    I just wish people who could come up with something like this would have used their time to create an actual (that is, complete,) story around these interesting characters. I have no idea how you would derive any pleasure from this trip into the even more messed up iteration of a pointless story device that exists solely for the purpose of torturing characters one might like to watch leading some kind of successful life instead. This, what I would call an inherently tragic worldview (meaning your screwed from the get-go, whatever you do so there’s no point in trying to find an alternative), has messed up many an anime for me, so forgive me if I’m ranting. rant over.

    (If this post provokes advocates of the game into providing a rebutal, you needn’t bother. My only interest is the anime adaptation. I’m a strictly linear narratives kind a guy)

  10. AstroNerdBoy says:

    Well, what you cite is a problem with a lot of Japanese adaptations. Game adaptations often suffer from trying to incorporate multiple path storylines into a single storyline and usually, that doesn’t work so well.

    Then, there are the adaptations of manga or novels where the anime never finishes (Fruits Basket) or changes things quite a lot from the original.

    Finally, there are the multi-platform storylines. My favorite, Tenchi Muyo!, has stuff not only published in the various canon OVA’s, GXP TV series, and ISM PPV series, but also in novels, doujinshi, and interviews. Japanese fans get the whole story and we in the West get only what we can scrounge together.

    That is the frustrating thing about being an anime fan. ^_^;

  11. ghostbeetle says:

    I hear you. sigh. 😉

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