Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works – 08 (Spring a trap, get a surprise.)

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works – 08 review
フェイト/ステイナイト [Unlimited Blade Works] – 08

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08Shirou dreams his arms become spiky metal things. After training with Saber, she seems pleased with his progress, but acts offended when he mentions mimicking Archer’s moves. Shirou arrives late at school, where Shinji is acting weird to him. At lunch, Rin drags Shirou to the rooftop, where she apologizes for Archer’s attempt on his life. She reveals she used another Command Spell to force Archer to not attack Shirou while she and he are allies. As the two discuss the situation, including Shinji being a master, Shinji springs his trap by having Rider activate it. A barrier around the school is activated, causing the students to become unconscious. After checking on Sakura, Shirou and Rin are attacked by Dragon Tooth warriors.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08Shirou decides to use one of his Command Spells to summon Saber, who makes short work of bone warriors. Saber senses a Servant on the floor they are on while Shirou senses the source of the barrier on the first floor. He tells Saber to deal with the Servant while he and Rin deal with whatever’s on the ground floor. As they head down, Shinji and Rider find their hideout under assault from someone, shocking Shinji. Meanwhile, Saber encounters Rider, only to discover it is an illusion from Caster. Shirou and Rin make it to Shinji’s location, where they find him in shock and Rider utterly defeated, where she dies, causing the barrier to lift. Shinji refuses to cough up who attacked Rider and him and flees. Since the students are alive, Rin suggests calling Kirie for help, after which, she, Saber, and Shirou discuss the situation.

Thoughts/Review:

Wow. These Fate/stay night episodes just fly by.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

I don’t remember if this was a factor in the original anime adaptation, but I find Saber’s being offended by Shirou’s using Archer’s style to be fake. After all, she was pleased with his actions until he admitted he was imitating Archer. Surely, she would have known that right away. Still, I couldn’t help but find it cute.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

And speaking of cute, the blushing Rin impatiently waiting for Shirou, then dragging him to the roof for lunch made me smile.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

Their conversation regarding Shinji revealed how clever he was. Not being a mage, trickery was the only way he was going to win. He played Rin into not doing anything since she knew he had no power. He played Shirou by evoking their friendship (though how the two were friends is a mystery to me).

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

Whatever Rin and Shirou did to remove his barriers was a fail since Rider was able to activate them. It seemed like their efforts were for naught, based on how the barrier went up and did what it was supposed to do…until Rider bit it.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

Speaking of Rider, I will admit that I am disappointed we didn’t get to see her riding Pegasus. I’m also disappointed she got killed so quickly, but I couldn’t help but feel that she allowed herself to be killed. Without saying anything, she had that appearance of just not wanting to be there. Yes, we did see that she fought, but I can’t imagine went all out.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

I don’t remember Rider being killed like this in the original anime. Shinji’s reaction to the intruder at the lab, combined with Caster doing all of the bone warriors and such strongly suggests that Caster’s master did it somehow. I know who Caster’s Master is, so I know this person is tough in a fight. And if Rider let herself be killed, then there you have it.  Either that, or Caster and her Master have an alliance with another Master-Servant, but I kind of doubt that.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

Shirou comes off so much better in this adaptation than in the previous one. Yeah, he was a bit of his annoying self last episode, but he was letting Archer get under his skin. Here, even Rin noted how calm and collected Shirou was during the fight, noticing things that she missed. I do like this version of Shirou.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

So, we have our first Servant death, and Shinji is out of the race. If I had to guess, I’d say Caster was next on the list (and again, I don’t remember if she died next in the original anime or not). We’ll see.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

Once again, ufotable knocks another one out of the park. Their adaptation of Fate/stay night really sets a high bar for other anime adaptations. I really am looking forward to the next episode.

Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works - 08

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16 Responses to “Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works – 08 (Spring a trap, get a surprise.)”

  1. popthepuff says:

    It’s actually going to be almost entirely different from the original since it adapts a different route, though there’ll be some similarities since the old anime merged some things from UBW and HF into it’s Fate “adaptation”.

  2. cold_menthol says:

    I like this episode a lot because it has almost everything; servant in action, master in action, Rin’s and Saber’s tsun(?) moments, a bit of exposition for Shirou. Oh, and that twist, didn’t see that coming. lol.

    Whatever Rin and Shirou did to remove his barriers was a fail since Rider was able to activate them

    IIRC, what Rin and Shirou did wasn’t removing the barrier, but just delaying or something. Maybe Farray will explain it clearer.

    I know who Caster’s Master is, so I know this person is tough in a fight. And if Rider let herself be killed, then there you have it

    Plus maybe Caster’s assist for her master. She is a mage after all, so buffing is possible.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      Plus maybe Caster’s assist for her master. She is a mage after all, so buffing is possible.

      I hadn’t thought about that. I don’t remember if Caster did something like that in the earlier adaptation.

  3. Farray says:

    I don’t remember if this was a factor in the original anime adaptation, but I find Saber’s being offended by Shirou’s using Archer’s style to be fake.

    You know, since a few weeks, it’s drastically different compared to the 2006 anime, because that anime simply doesn’t follow the route of this new anime. This is UBW, not Fate. There are similarities, obviously, as DEEN took the liberty of taking some scenes from UBW and HF, but it was still essentially Fate. It’s definitely interesting to see how things change in UBW because a few different decisions (“For want of a nail”, right?) were made.

    Like in this scene. Shirou never had a good look at Archer’s style in Fate, but he now did in UBW, because he saw him fight Caster and Assassin. And Saber really was a bit upset and sulking, maybe even irritated or offended, but definitely not faked. I mean, imagine someone asks you to teach them whatever it is that you can do well, only to realize they don’t actually want to learn from you and imitate someone else.

    Sure, she might be happy that Shirou found something that suits him more, but I would be annoyed, too. What is left out, is that Saber might notice that he is better now, but of course he still stands no chance against Servants, who are serious. Well, it’s not necessary new info, so whatever.

    And speaking of cute, the blushing Rin impatiently waiting for Shirou, then dragging him to the roof for lunch made me smile.

    There are quite a few funny options in that scene. Either way, Shirou plays dumb to tease Rin, which I think is quite amusing. What is missing for instance is that the whole school erases this scene – Rin yelling at Shirou – from their minds, since she is the school idol and wouldn’t do that.

    A bit extra info was left out when the two of them had lunch, which is a shame, as they start to learn more about each other, like about their magic training (I posted an excerpt a few weeks ago), more details about magic crests and Rin’s jewel magic. Overall, it’s a subtle scene to improve their relationship. Shirou already understands Rin’s character very well and this scene showed that.

    If you’re wondering how Rin found out what Archer did the day before, he told her when he came back. Well, he tried to hide it, but Rin saw him beaten up and drained of mana, so she questioned him and Archer didn’t intend to lie to Rin.

    He played Shirou by evoking their friendship (though how the two were friends is a mystery to me).

    Well, it’s kind of hard to understand, when one doesn’t know how Shinji used to be. Shirou valued Shinji’s honesty and Shirou was probably Shinji’s only friend, so they often hung around.

    Whatever Rin and Shirou did to remove his barriers was a fail since Rider was able to activate them. It seemed like their efforts were for naught, based on how the barrier went up and did what it was supposed to do…until Rider bit it.

    The Bloodfort Andromeda (http://i.imgur.com/9WhUAnu.jpg) is Rider’s Noble Phantasm, magic to be more precise, and how effective it is depends on how much energy Rider can gather until she finally activates the Boundary Field. What Rin did, as she told Shirou a few episodes ago, is weaken the field a bit, she couldn’t remove it. It only saps a bit energy (almost unnoticeable, although magi like Rin and Shirou will notice, like they did in episode 00 and 01 respectively) before its activation to make the field more powerful. As a boundary field, it cuts off all the connection outside. That’s why Rin couldn’t contact Archer. Outside, everything looks perfectly normal.

    Once Rider activates it, everyone around who can’t magically defend him/herself will melt very quickly. It’s not nearly as strong as it is in Fate, because Shinji orders Rider to activate it prematurely. The field would be much stronger, if Rider had gathered more mana and if she had a better Master.

    [spoiler]What I find kind of strange is the new scene with Sakura. I mean, in the novel at least, it’s not noted what happened with Sakura, she might as well not have been present or affected by the bloodfort at all, but here in the anime we see her. She is not trained, so it at least makes sense, that she is unconscious, but I’m not sure up to what point Rider can control the field. I don’t think she wishes to harm Sakura, so it might even be possible, that Sakura faked her innocence in the school.

    Oh, and Sakura probably can’t defend herself (like Shirou tried against Caster’s threads two weeks ago, or like he does in this episode) if she really was attacked. She has the potential, but how well she is doing with magic is another issue.

    Oh, as a side note, the eye is an added hint to her identity.[/spoiler]

    So it seems like ufotable toned down the brutality of that scene a bit. The bloodfort already melted the skin of a few students in the novel, which horrified Rin, but Shirou stayed calm. Unnaturally calm. He actually made the same face when Ayako kind of reminded him of the Fuyuki Fire.

    (Comparison:

    Ep 04: http://i.imgur.com/cP4aucL.jpg

    Ep 08: http://i.imgur.com/gvLe9Q3.png )

    I think ufotable adapted that really well. I personally, as the reader, didn’t notice something was wrong, until Rin noted how calm Shirou was, and then I remembered that this scene is actually told from Shirou’s POV. Then it dawned on me again how “rationally” he analyzed everything, something he already did in the novel several times before.

    I’m also disappointed she got killed so quickly, but I couldn’t help but feel that she allowed herself to be killed. Without saying anything, she had that appearance of just not wanting to be there. Yes, we did see that she fought, but I can’t imagine went all out.

    It’s noted by Saber in the novel, that Rider probably got killed without any resistance (Saber suspected Shinji became a hostage, so Rider allowed herself to get killed). Rin says something similar here. Her death was kind of… changed. Rider’s neck was ripped apart with one single blow in the novel. Is her death here more gruesome? I’m not sure.

    Anyway, there are three routes for FSN, so it’s inevitable that out of the 14 participants, a few have to die without getting much development and an amalgamation of the routes/original route isn’t necessary, since ufotable will adapt Heaven’s Feel anyway.

    I don’t remember Rider being killed like this in the original anime

    Yeah well, obviously her fate (haha) is different in UBW than it is in Fate. She got killed by a golden beam by Saber in Fate.

    So, we have our first Servant death, and Shinji is out of the race. If I had to guess, I’d say Caster was next on the list (and again, I don’t remember if she died next in the original anime or not).

    Different route, different outcome. Caster wasn’t the next to die in Fate, though.

    Fate spoilers:

    [spoiler]Actually, Caster’s role in Fate is almost non-existant. After Shirou, Saber and Rin eliminated Berserker and took Ilya in, Caster attacked them and informed them that Assassin is dead, only to get sword-rained by Gilgamesh immediately. So Assassin died offscreen and Caster desperately launched an attack, only to make a dramatic entrance for Gil possible. Kuzuki never appeared in Fate.

    The death order in Fate was:

    Rider -> Archer -> Berserker -> Assassin -> Caster -> Lancer -> Gilgamesh -> Saber (by destroying the Grail)[/spoiler]

    Additional notes:

    1. Shirou actually fought with two weapons in both hand when the boundary field was activated in the novel. To make up for that change, they added a scene with him training dual-wielding shinais.

    2. Rin’s German:

    “Ein Körper ist ein Körper!”

    Yes, Rin. “A body is a body.” And a man once told me “A table is a table.”

    3. Rider’s stats:

    http://i.imgur.com/oGnMq9Q.jpg

    4. The CG (especially the bone warriors) looked a bit off this episode. Meh, could be better.

    [spoiler]Like this:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOZK4MiIMZM

    Please, no, I was kidding. T_T [/spoiler]

    5. Oh hey, Shirou’s classmate, Gotou-kun, looks different compared to DEEN’s version of him.

    DEEN: http://i.imgur.com/mr5HNsw.jpg

    ufotable: http://i.imgur.com/1fLxOct.jpg

    Looks closer to this, definitely: http://i.imgur.com/6eaMn7P.jpg

    I saw a bunch of his classmates in this episode. It was quite fun to spot them.

    6. Did you notice the shout outs in Prisma Illya 2wei to the UBW route? The killing attempt of the Archer on the protagonist was stopped by Rin, using her “seal” in both series (in UBW her Command Spell, in 2wei a curse with a seal that looks like Rin’s Command Spell).

    7. A bunch of gifs:

    [spoiler]
    Saber sulking:

    http://i.imgur.com/4KDLN8T.gif
    http://i.imgur.com/sd3yWA0.gif

    Embarassed Rin and Rin scenes on the rooftop:

    http://i.imgur.com/1gkrnWw.gif
    http://i.imgur.com/GGWPyrQ.gif
    http://i.imgur.com/aT0kJuW.gif
    http://i.imgur.com/4ecSblj.gif

    Saber gets summoned:

    http://i.imgur.com/6licRkj.gif

    Saber kills golems:

    http://i.imgur.com/7gppH7s.gif
    http://i.imgur.com/uAq2Sek.gif

    “Rider” vs Saber:

    http://i.imgur.com/aSdShH7.gif

    Another very intimate moment with Caster:

    http://i.imgur.com/Q7VmwHn.gif

    Btw, that scene happened offscreen in the novel, as we follow Shirou and Rin.

    Shinji getting kicked around by Rin:

    http://i.imgur.com/6ewLnBJ.gif
    http://i.imgur.com/YV9vIBK.gif

    What a twist, Rider (I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist.):

    http://i.imgur.com/VFAyPds.gif

    Like a record, baby:

    http://gifsound.com/?gif=https://i.imgur.com/4qQOQfL.gif&v=iZACBEW_B8s&s=60
    [/spoiler]

    8. Preview:

    [spoiler]Archer, Saber, white pawn and black queen meet. And another white pawn meets the black bishop.[/spoiler]

    Well, that’s it for now. RIP, Rider. See you in two years or so. 😉

    • Farray says:

      9. Someone just reminded me of the beginning of a conversation in this episode, that was cut (paraphrased):

      [spoiler]
      Shinji: Hi Emiya! 😉
      Shirou: Holy shit Shinji you’re being nice, are you sick or something?!
      Shinji: what
      Shirou: Oh no, did you get attacked?!
      Shinji: fuck you

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bkWHM6UYh98&t=1m4s

      Speaking of this scene reminds me that they cut that part with Kuzuki meeting Shirou, just a minute before this conversation happens.
      [/spoiler]

      10. As of this episode we are 34 minutes into the DEEN movie (out of ~100 minutes). ufotable also have used 1/3 of their screentime already, so that kind of fits.

      11. Shirou imitating Archer:

      http://i.imgur.com/4JdNV20.gif

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      Man, wish I had time to comment on all this great stuff, but I’m suddenly overloaded at work. 🙁 But I did read it all and thanks, as usual. ^_^

  4. WMC says:

    Zair Antrasahnt! And I love those outtake images.

  5. Y’know, I’ve always wondered if it was actually Kuzuki who killed Rider since… tagged for possible spoilers.
    [spoiler]He even took Saber by surprise during their first encounter… and he doesn’t seem to have a lot of mana and neither is he a proper magus so he wouldn’t be sensed as a threat by the servants or other mages. Rider’s death also seems consistent with the kind of killing blow that he deals.[/spoiler]

    • Farray says:

      Rider’s killer:

      [spoiler]It was Kuzuki. It was a single attack that killed her in the novel (and it seems like Saber was mistaken when she thought Rider died because Shinji was taken hostage, it probably was just the fact that Kuzuki assassinated Rider with a single blow that made her think that).

      Kuzuki can’t hit Servants, since they possess no corporeal bodies and he is not a magus. Usually. Caster buffed his offense and defense with magic, which allowed him to do it. It turned his fists into steel and probably protected him from Rider’s boundary field. [/spoiler]

      • AstroNerdBoy says:

        Wow. Considering…

        [spoiler]…Rider was shown charging her attacker, it makes the fact that Kuzuki took her out (buffed or not) impressive. But did Rider go all out? I still can’t help but feel that she wasn’t really into things.[/spoiler]

        • Farray says:

          [spoiler]Even if Rider wasn’t really into things, and she is an extremely loyal Servant, she would not let her get killed that easily as an expert in close-combat. I think it’s more likely she underestimated Kuzuki and promptly paid the price, as Kuzuki doesn’t intend to exchange blows and play around or anything. One hit is enough to end a fight.

          Oh, and Rider never goes all out. Ever. People often like to compare the FSN Servants with the FZ ones and I guess it’s natural for them to assume now that FZ-Rider is far more superior. However, if she were using her complete arsenal, and if Shinji wasn’t such a shitty Master, she would absolutely wreck FZ-Rider.

          [spoiler]Rider revealed her Pegasus and her eyes at the same time in only one battle in the entire Visual Novel. And this isn’t even her final form! (I’m sorry, someone’s bombarding me with DBZ memes right now, lol.)

          Rider is (if we take out Saber buffed with Mana Burst magic) easily the second strongest Servant in the 5th War in pure physical power. If Sakura were her Master, that is. She never intends to turn into her Gorgon form, though, and if she would, it would be a nightmare. For everyone involved.

          Perseus was granted five specific Noble Phantasms by the gods to take out the Gorgon and he barely survived. Btw, he was the originally planned Rider in the first drafts for Fate/stay night which Nasu wrote in highschool (or was it college?), when the protagonist was a woman and King Arthur still male.[/spoiler] [/spoiler]

        • Farray says:

          Oh, and of course the strongest Servant in physical strength is Berserker. Saber is as strong as a 14/15-year old girl if she doesn’t constantly buff herself with magic.

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