Herald Anime Club

The Herald Anime Club Meeting 4: Drifters, Episode 4

Meeting Date: 11/2/2016

Disclaimer: The Herald Anime Club discusses shows as they’re airing. Naturally, there will be spoilers for a given episode. You have been warned!

Mike Ferreira: Good evening everyone, and welcome once again to the Herald Anime Club. I’m Mike Ferreira and I’m joined by L.B. Bryant, Lydia Rivers, and Anthony Simpson
L.B. Bryant: Heyo!
Lydia Rivers: Hiiiii friends!
Mike Ferreira: This week we’re continuing our discussion of Drifters, which aired its fourth episode on Friday.
Mike Ferreira: A lot happened this week, so I’d like to open the floor to discussion. Initial thoughts?
Lydia Rivers: Oh man. Episode four was more than I expected it to be! I figured it’d give us a bit of a break from the constant ratchet-up of action, but nah. They just redirected it after giving us some backstory.
Mike Ferreira: They really shed a lot of light on evil Jesus this time around. And yes – I’m convinced now that’s supposed to be Jesus of Nazareth
Lydia Rivers: Mhm. Dark Jesus with a cute dragonfly staff.
L.B. Bryant: Much more enjoyable than last week IMO but I’m still very bothered by how little we’re seeing of Easy and Murasaki. What’s a guy gotta do to get at least half an episode of them going back and forth?
Lydia Rivers: I like that they’re keeping them mysterious.
Mike Ferreira: They’re definitely building something though.
Lydia Rivers: I think the impact will be higher once they finally go at it.
L.B. Bryant: I agree there. I’m just being whiny and impatient. heh
L.B. Bryant: I want this, I want that, now now now :)
Lydia Rivers: *pat* There there! It’ll be all the better when it happens.
Mike Ferreira: I have to admit – I loved Easy’s (admittedly short) appearance this time.
L.B. Bryant: I loved the punchline particularly
Mike Ferreira: Likewise.
Lydia Rivers: Yes! She was trying to be cool and not bother to look at Murasaki. She should probably check to see that he’s there before her next monologue though.

Mike Ferreira: When you gotta monologue, you gotta monologue. Store closes at 5, though
Mike Ferreira: Murasaki has his priorities straight
Lydia Rivers: Mhm. I was struck though! I was struck by the immediate opening. It looked like the matrix before it turned into the hallway or something.
Mike Ferreira: Easy works in IT confirmed! (Our souls are black as coal)
Lydia Rivers: It’s true then. She’s pissed that he can actually afford to take lunch breaks.
L.B. Bryant: I can also confirm Mike’s statement as my wife works in IT as well
Mike Ferreira: Toldya. YOU work 80 straight hours in a server room and be sunshine and lollipops (joking!)
Anthony Simpson: I know Easy is supposed to be on the bad guys side, but she is favorite character so far.
Lydia Rivers: Although maybe if she took the time she uses to monologue to update her work queues she might be able to at least squeeze in a coffee break…
Mike Ferreira: I really like Easy. We’ve only seen her in, what, three scenes? But her personality’s just so big, so bombastic that you can’t help but love her
Lydia Rivers: I like how she acts so freely in such stuffy clothes. It’s a great contradiction.
Anthony Simpson: As packed as the first three episodes were, I was glad to see that we got a breather episode which started to explain what the hell is going on.
L.B. Bryant: Though to be fair if she didn’t have the calm and collected Murasaki to balance her out, there’s no guarantee that her personality would work nearly as well.
Mike Ferreira: Agreed.
Lydia Rivers: Agreed LB!
Mike Ferreira: Murasaki’s the yin to Easy’s yang
Lydia Rivers: Yeah, it’s almost like they had characters decently planned out, or something.
L.B. Bryant: I agree with Anthony as well that it was nice to have a breather episode.
L.B. Bryant: The pacing of this episode was much slower than last week’s episode but I think that will benefit viewers who will be marathoning the show later on down the road.
Lydia Rivers: I didn’t feel like it was a breather though! There was so much new information and then at the end they had successfully started a rebellion!
Mike Ferreira: It’s a breather after Airplanes vs. Dragons
Lydia Rivers: I…I…….I want more. u.u
Mike Ferreira: Much more light-hearted with the interplay between our main trio, especially now that we have Olminu in the mix
Lydia Rivers: YES!
Mike Ferreira: Tell me about it! Every time I see “To be continued” I just let out an audible “Fuck!”
Lydia Rivers: I’m so relieved we finally learned her name. I was getting tired of having to think of her just as the token big boobs character. Although Nobunaga is going to constantly remind us….
Mike Ferreira: Well yeah. Nobunaga’s a dirty old man, too

Anthony Simpson: It’s a breather in the sense that we didn’t get a lot of action scenes and in a way an exposition episode.
Mike Ferreira: I like how they actually spent time on the Black King this time around, instead of having him be this one-dimensional force
Mike Ferreira: They showed how the battle, how his human life affected him
Lydia Rivers: Yeah, but I also like how the people who follow him helped to define his character too. That was also really well planned out.
Anthony Simpson: I’m going to go with what Mike mentioned earlier that Black King is evil Jesus.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed. He still wants to heal the sick and save the wounded… he just wants to destroy humanity while he’s at it.
Lydia Rivers: I don’t think we can call him evil yet. I’m sticking with dark.
Anthony Simpson: He just wants to help the demi-humans since they haven’t crucified him…..yet
Mike Ferreira: Well “evil” big-ass air quotes.
Lydia Rivers: Haha! Ok! Leave it to nerds to quibble over adjectives ^-^
Mike Ferreira: This is a very morally grey series – nobody’s a saint here. Well Joan of Arc is but..
Lydia Rivers: Uh…ah…heh. *cough* yeah. But that’s on OUR world.
Anthony Simpson: It’s a grey and grey type of show.
Lydia Rivers: I was also like “HIII RASPUTIN! NICE OF YOU TO JOIN US!”
Mike Ferreira: Yeah.. we’re literally just rooting for the most likeable assholes at this point
Lydia Rivers: Mhm. The overreaching point of the story so far definitely seems to be perspective swaps.
Mike Ferreira: Indeed.
Lydia Rivers: I actually really love those. I can never get enough. The fact that it’s so well done and they’re using a blend of fantasy and history to tell the story makes me a huge fan, because they can naturally set up points and situations that wouldn’t otherwise work to illustrate.
Mike Ferreira: Well said
Mike Ferreira: I’m still looking forward to when our main trio finally faces down the Ends – I want to see how things turn out.
Anthony Simpson: I’m expecting a blood bath and I’m going to upset if we don’t get a blood bath.
Mike Ferreira: I think we’ll get a bloodbath
Lydia Rivers: I’m kind of scared of what will happen, to be honest. I mean, uniting against a huge foe like that under people who don’t give a damn about the conflict, they just want to return to their former status…well Olminu knows what will happen but she’s focused on the immediate problem.

Mike Ferreira: I’m genuinely curious to see how things turn out when  Minamoto no Yoshitsune and Nasu no Yoichi cross paths – In history, Nasu no Yoichi served under Yoshitsune in the Genpei War. There’s history, dammit!
L.B. Bryant: I think it’s pretty safe to assume that if this series is given the choice of ‘blood bath’ vs. ‘not a blood bath’, they are going to choose the former 99% of the time.
Lydia Rivers: I get the sense that Toyohisa doesn’t really care about his former status, he’s just going with the flow though. Which is dangerous in its own right.
Anthony Simpson: That is true Lydia.
Mike Ferreira: Very true
Mike Ferreira: He’s a wild card
Lydia Rivers: Yeah and a transparent one, which Nobunaga will no doubt love.
Lydia Rivers: *nervous, nervous*
Mike Ferreira: Nobunaga loves people like that… just like he adores folks he can manipulate, clearly
Lydia Rivers: Yeah. GOOD LUCK, EVERYONE!!! T-T
Mike Ferreira: Just two more days and you can see how the rebellion goes.
Anthony Simpson: I can wait for the weekend to see that.
Anthony Simpson: Can’t wait.
Mike Ferreira: Likewise. It’s going to be a brutal battle – 200 freaking troops
Lydia Rivers: Heh. I already know how it’s going to go. The human empire is so inflated and arrogant at this point that the lower ranks will roll over for the trio. The elves are passionate, and the humans are unprepared due to their delusions of superiority.
Mike Ferreira: Very possible.
Mike Ferreira: But we’ll have some battle fun, no doubt
Lydia Rivers: For sure! So…is Hitler the emperor?
Anthony Simpson: Speaking of elves. I like how now we got around the language barrier.

Mike Ferreira: That’s my guess
Anthony Simpson: I’m not going to spoil that.
Mike Ferreira: Likewise. The whole “magic talismans” works a bit better than I expected – reminds me of the Babelfish from Hitchiker’s
Mike Ferreira: Guide to the Galaxy
Anthony Simpson: All I can say is it explains things with how the Elves are treated.
Lydia Rivers: Hehe thanks Anthony! It was a guess question! Omg babelfish! I also like the clue about onmyouji
Lydia Rivers: Talismans against angry spirits totally make sense now…
Mike Ferreira: If I don’t have a pudgy man with a moustache saying “exterminate the Elves” I’m going to be a bit disappointed
Mike Ferreira: It would make too damn much sense
Lydia Rivers: Honestly, it could also be like… Philip the II.
Lydia Rivers: Because no one expects the Spanish Inquisition.
Mike Ferreira: Well of course! THey operate on one thing: surprise. Yes, surprise and fear! Oh wait. That’s two things…
Lydia Rivers: Can I have a lady Drifter please? Like Artemisia of Caria!
L.B. Bryant: No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!
Mike Ferreira: Or Hua Mulan
L.B. Bryant: Mulan would be awesome
Lydia Rivers: Yeah, or Boudicca! Or one of the female samurai!
Mike Ferreira: Tomoe Gozen ftw!
Lydia Rivers: I have to look up their names real quickly, for I’ve forgotten. Nakano Takeko is the most recent one! OH YEAH TOMOE GOZEN!
Mike Ferreira: Brilliant swordswoman and archer – would be an amazing fit
Lydia Rivers: Nakano Takeko was in the Battle of Aizu, on the Aizu side.
Lydia Rivers: Seeing her go against Hijikata would be amazing.
Mike Ferreira: I’d love to see that happen
Mike Ferreira: On a more random note: I felt the humor in this episode worked a lot better – it seemed a more natural fit in the whole “breather episode” context
Lydia Rivers: It did. I think that’s why there was more of it! It was still really inappropriate though, as the serious big brother elf rightly chewed them out for it. Hehe.
Anthony Simpson: I have to agree that the humor worked better this time around.


Mike Ferreira: I love that the cast is getting aware and just saying “lolno – stop”
Lydia Rivers: They took the scolding from the elf though and got serious immediately. I thought that was neat.
Mike Ferreira: It’s telling about these characters – while they do play off one another, they know when it’s time for business.
Lydia Rivers: Yeah. And they have a baseline of respect that the humans in power clearly do not. Well…for their allies anyway.
Mike Ferreira: Exactly
Mike Ferreira: On that note – I thought it interesting that one of the characters pretty much said “your ability to make these jokes is how we know you’re human.” Kind of an interesting in-show observation.
Mike Ferreira: Because let’s face it – humans are, well… goofy. We do stupid shit at the worst times
Lydia Rivers: Oh! Good catch, Mike! I noted that but didn’t think deeply about it.
Anthony Simpson: you have a point Mike.
Lydia Rivers: So far the show has overwhelmed us by pointing out human frailty. But in this episode it pointed out human spirit in the face of terrible circumstances.
Mike Ferreira: Exactly.
Lydia Rivers: Well, it’s been using humor all along to show us but it intentionally explained itself in this one, anyway.
Mike Ferreira: It’s a great way to return to this whole over-arching motif. Just like how the Ends were portrayed as almost monster-like figures in the previous episode.
Lydia Rivers: Mhm! I’m going to have a lot of uncomfortable fun trying to honestly decide which side I’d be on. Will I pick human just because I am one? Is fraternity a correct reason, despite it being a good one?
Mike Ferreira: I need to see a bit more of the Ends off the battlefield
Lydia Rivers: Definitely.

Mike Ferreira: There’s a lot of potential here.
Lydia Rivers: It’s clear that neither side is going to be “good” though. At least, so far…Toyohisa is the only one I’d trust but that’s because his code of honor is predictable. Not because he’s “good.”
Mike Ferreira: Indeed. And even then it’s a tenuous trust, at best
Anthony Simpson: I can see how it can be hard to pick which side to be on.  With not having a clear cut “good and bad side” in this battle.  I can safely say I don’t see any issues if people want to root for the Ends.
Lydia Rivers: Do you identify with the ‘monsters’ or the ‘other monsters?’
Lydia Rivers: I guess it’ll come down to a question of identity, yeah.
Mike Ferreira: Likewise. Honestly, I’m pretty sympathetic to them. They’re all humans, foresaken by their own kind. It’s a natural reaction they’re having, to just lash out
Lydia Rivers: Well, it might not even be lashing out in the long run. They might be venting their anger while feeling like they’re saving everyone else from humans.
Lydia Rivers: It’s too soon to say if Jesus is the only one who feels that way, but…
Mike Ferreira: True.
Mike Ferreira: That scene was powerful – Jesus healing the sick and wounded

Anthony Simpson: I don’t blame Evil Jesus for the way he acts, all things considering.
Lydia Rivers: Dark Jesus!
Mike Ferreira: Here’s an odd question… would that make Jesus, himself, the antichrist?
Anthony Simpson: Good question.
Lydia Rivers: Nah. He’s still a Christ, just not for humans.
Mike Ferreira: Fair enough
Mike Ferreira: Aniwho, we’re coming up on time for the week – anything more you guys want to bring up?
Anthony Simpson: I wanna I’m interested in the Simuldub that is coming out on Sunday.  Won’t get to it until Monday but I’m interested to see how it is handled.
Lydia Rivers: I’m really looking forward to the next episode. No matter which side I end up identifying with, it will be moving to see the elves reclaim their status. This is what happens when there’s nothing to lose. Any consequence is fine. That is what I will be thinking about during Episode 5!
Mike Ferreira: Aniwho, thanks as always for joining us this week! Til next time, remember: The Black King loves everyone… unless they’re human. Then they can die in a fire.
Lydia Rivers: Which is lit by Joan of Arc, witch version.
Mike Ferreira: Damn straight
Mike Ferreira: Have a great night, everyone!
Anthony Simpson: night
Lydia Rivers: Stay shiny!

Editor’s Note: By popular demand, here’s one more shot of Easy.


About the author

Samantha Ferreira

Samantha Ferreira is Anime Herald’s founder and editor-in-chief. A Rhode Island native, Samantha has been an anime fan since 1992, and an active member of the anime press since 2002, when she began working as a reviewer for Anime Dream. She launched Anime Herald in 2010, and continues to oversee its operations to this day. Outside of journalism, Samantha actively studies the history of the North American anime fandom and industry, with a particular focus on the 2000s anime boom and bust. She’s a huge fan of all things Sakura Wars, and maintains series fansite Combat Revue Review when she has free time available. When not in the Anime Herald Discord, Samantha can typically be found on Bluesky.

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