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But before the caretakers can fulfill their duty and silence Fakir, Ahiru arrives.Fitting, then, that this episode spends so much time on the one character who’s always known their narrative is a curse, and always feared the consequences of escape – the captive princess, Rue.

To start, this story of a princess and her terrible mistake reflects fairly directly on recent episodes’ consistent engagement with the terror of agency.But Fakir knows her – this is just Ahiru, this is what she’s always like.[Top Recommendations Best 2018 10 Anime Rom Com Of]

Meanwhile, after one more surprisingly thoughtful and pointed pep talk by Cat-sensei, Ahiru decides to embrace her agency once again.Ahiru initially makes some important progress in their conversation, when her insistence on them referring to each other as Rue and Ahiru prompts her friend to follow suit.However, no matter how far she went, outside the castle, there was only an endless forest as black as pitch.With the line between fiction and reality impossibly blurred, Fakir comes to a long-awaited answer – that his foe is not the villain of the story, but the puppetmaster who set these figures against each other.In structural terms, this episode bounces between protagonists with such speed that it’d basically be possible to make a coherent essay out of it, so I’ll just acknowledge right now that this is an ensemble episode perpetually contrasting our three leads’ actions against each other.And there, after witnessing a new family simply pop into existence before the gate, she has a terrifying realization.Embodying the strength and gallantry of a true hero, the caretakers can only perceive her as an overwhelming white swan.It could well be that Ahiru, all of her friends, and this world entirely simply don’t exist beyond the gate – that they are stories within a story’s frame, and if they were to exit, they would dissolve into nothing.Through a rapid montage and more alienating fisheye shots, Ahiru scours the town for heart shards, only to find her gem lighting up at the gate out of town.But Rue soon pushes away, transforming into the crow and reaffirming her identity as Kraehe.Her interference saves Fakir, but she is quickly spirited away in a wonderful continuation of last episode’s perspective-jostling formal manipulation.One day, the princess snuck by the guard at the gate and slipped out of the castle for the very first time.Will the stage fade to black the moment they successfully rebel? Does the edge of the town end in a crumbling cliff of parchment and ink, the darkness of unbeing all around them? Though Princess Tutu is principally concerned with its emotional journeys and thematic aims, the pragmatic in-universe consequences of “escape” have to be weighing heavy on its characters’ minds.The physical substance of this world has been kept intentionally vague, but we really don’t know if anything exists outside of Ahiru and Fakir’s town.It’s a striking choice that seems to conjure nightmares of wading through an endless bog, as if Ahiru is literally racing against narrative inevitability.

Those are the sort of questions Fakir is supposed to worry about, though – in Ahiru’s case, this just gives her all the more personal resolve.Resolving to find the heart shards, she begins a chase across Gold Crown Town, and soon finds herself running across Mytho.Collapsing on the stairs, she chastises herself for being a “bad daughter,” unable to understand how clearly her actions are demonstrating her strength.[The Spell Props Disks Forums Strange Costuming Dr From]

The introduction of Rue actually provides a perfect demonstration of this episode’s unique environmental focus.Those gears that Drosselmeyer is portrayed with in the eyecatches and episode endings? Turns out they’re not just a fanciful visual device – they actually exist, and are soon used to capture Ahiru altogether.

At the same time, while this fable clearly reflects on Tutu’s recent thematic concerns, it also points to a new and very practical question: “what happens if our heroes win?” Though our leads have consistently rebelled against Drosselmeyer’s wishes, the choices they have made still took place within the setting and narrative framework he provided for them – they’re not choosing entirely new destinies, they’re merely making unexpected individual actions within the narrative.A story’s writer will love its characters more than anyone else, but also hurt them more than anyone else.Before she knew it, the princess ended up unable to either escape the forest or return to the castle.And to these caretakers, Fakir is the ultimate threat – an heir of Drosselmeyer, someone who could destroy the fabric of this world with a single word.[Of In Poisoning The Legend Korra Mercury]

As our divided heroes each grapple with the weight of their own destiny, Princess Tutu’s twenty-second episode opens on an image of stacked hallways lined with endless doors.

Rue’s painful relationship with her own identity defines her in this episode, and colors her interactions with a variety of other characters.That idea of ending up “unable to either escape the forest or return to the castle” can frighten any of us into stillness – “doing nothing” doesn’t feel like a choice, but making a choice and have it turn out to be wrong feels like sabotaging your own destiny.When Uzura seems to recognize her as someone other than Kraehe, she seems desperate to learn her current identity is a lie.Finally confronted by the old cloaked figures who’ve haunted recent episodes, they announce that their purpose is to “stop the stories that were born by burying their endings.” Through their perspective, Gold Crown Town comes off as some kind of strange menagerie, where a thousand half-finished tales all jostle next to each other, accepting each others’ existences as true because, well, that’s how they were written.The idea of going “off the script” of life is frightening to anyone, and if you yourself are the one choosing your destiny, you have no one else to thank, blame, or rely on.Storyboarded by series director Junichi Sato himself, this episode acknowledges Gold Crown Town as an actual narrative actor at all times, its succession of wide shots naturally conveying how small our heroes really are.[GUIDE Medusa NEW Animatronic Electronichalloween Headdress]

She doesn’t win, unfortunately.Rising to leap over the gate, Ahiru finds herself as trapped as the princess in the story; walls extend upwards into the distance, and to exit is simply to return.

The fate of storybook characters is to gloriously complete their task and then fade into memory, only experiencing new adventures if their author happens to return to them.Thank you all for all that you do.[Finals Up Wrap MNCC2015]

This article was made possible by reader support.After checking in on Fakir’s progress regarding the power of the author, Ahiru finds the raven’s daughter sitting alone, sulking on the roof of the clocktower.

While Rue seeks to escape her identity, Autor tries to find one of his own, and Ahiru works to uncover the mysteries of Gold Crown Town, Fakir steadily pursues Drosselmeyer’s power of creation.“Once upon a time, there was a princess raised by loving parents.In that kingdom, the inside of the castle was the entire world.”

There’s plenty to unpack in this brief monologue, and it can be interpreted on a variety of levels.And as Drosselmeyer moves closer to either glory or disaster, it makes equal sense that he’d forsake any appearance of objectivity, and begin using every tool at his disposal to manage his players.And so he makes his stand, preparing to save his precious friend from the cold gears of the author’s throne.[I Learned From Life 7 Cosplay Lessons]

We come across Rue quickly within this episode, though its split Fakir-Ahiru-Rue perspective (plus a dash of Autor!) means we take a little time getting there.But without knowing more about that narrator’s own motives, we must make do with the narrative, character-specific, and thematic implications of the tale as it is conveyed.

In a story that is itself about characters challenging the initial assumptions of their narrative, it makes a glorious kind of sense for the curtain to fall with acknowledgments that we, too, are acting upon a series of unquestioned narrative assumptions.They have total control over their character’s actions, and yet must ultimately let those characters speak their own truths if they wish to make something lasting and meaningful.Ahiru rushes to her side, but the journey there isn’t “Ahiru enters the building” into “Ahiru emerges from the window” – we instead get an extended sequence of cuts as Ahiru rushes up the tower stairs, her panic contrasted against the gears in the foreground.They have infinite power, and yet the moment that power is abused, the substance of their worlds collapses entirely.[STONE Anime Four Seiyuu Summer Sci FiPost Apocalyptic More Characters Announces Dr 038]

.Along with that, this episode also features perhaps the broadest selection yet of expansive, imposing shots of Gold Crown Town, portrayed through an intimidating mixture of fisheye and upwards-facing perspectives.First off, as the last episode directly informed us, we should take all of these lessons with a grain of salt – we now know these tales’ narrator is a genuine character within Tutu, who possesses a unique perspective and goals of their own.Taking up duck-Ahiru in his hands, Mytho confesses that “I love everyone in the world and want to protect them, and yet I also want to make everyone’s love my own.” Mytho’s misgivings reflect the ambiguous nature of his heart directly, but also seem like another paradox describing the artist’s condition.And when Autor turns from his own fear of purposelessness to meet the despondent Rue, she briefly attempts to once again follow her father’s orders… only to urge Autor to run home at the critical moment.Rue’s position combines fears about identity and authorship that have haunted many characters’ arcs with the insistent, malevolent presence of the raven himself, meaning her struggles to find a happier identity perpetually run aground on extreme guilt and self-loathing whenever she actually thinks of rebelling.Though Autor’s desire for an important, defined role would make him easy prey for a villain like Kraehe, the girl Rue is so terrified at the thought of being truly loved that she casts him aside.In the world of Princess Tutu, the counterpoint to this fear seems to be “manage that terror with the help of supportive friends” (in fact, being a supportive friend seems to be Ahiru’s central superpower), but that still doesn’t negate the terror of taking responsibility for your own life.
Source: http://wrongeverytime.com/2019/03/30/princess-tutu-episode-22/

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