Introduction to DanMachi III Episode 3
DanMachi III (a.k.a. “Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? III” and a.k.a. IIWTTTPUGIAD) episode 3, “Xenos | Outliers,” gives us some much anticipated dungeon goodness! Also, Hestia gets some time in the spotlight, which is always welcome because let’s face it. Sometimes, it’s easy to forget she’s a goddess! And that’s not all! Welcome to the collaboration review brought to you by Irina from I Drink and Watch Anime and me.
Before we dive in, do you have any opening thoughts, Irina!
First I want to thank you for picking up the lead on this one. I really thought I might be able to take care of it during the day but evening snuck up on me faster than I thought. In any case, thanks again for stepping in. I really appreciate you taking the lead on this one.
Second I guess I will reiterate that I’m liking this season much more than the last. Last good for you, some Miss Tulle for your viewing enjoyment!
It was an enjoyable episode all around!
Irina will be in bold type this week. There will be spoilers. I know we say that every time, and I know you probably know, but we care and we don’t want to accidentally spoil your enjoyment!
The episode basically had three major movements: Lili grabbing Haruhime’s tail in a fit of jealousy (otherwise known as telling Bell to stop feeling guilty for saving Wiene), Hestia and the political machinations behind the scenes, and the descent into the dungeon.
DanMachi III Episode 3’s Mission
The Guild Assigns a Mission
And I have to say, as we’ve mentioned here before, it seems like the more time the series spends in the dungeon, the more fun it is, and this DanMachi III Episode 3 was a great example.
The guild master ordered Eina Tulle orders to deliver a mission to Bell and Hestia Familia. First, it was great to see Eina again. Second, I think this is the first time that we saw a Mission, which is compulsory. A quest, by contrast, is optional. Bell read the paper and paled. Hestia Famila had to take Wiene to level 20 — which was below their previous descents.
The head of the Guild himself asked Eina to deliver the mission. I think a mission for a familia as small as Hestia’s worried her. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
He felt terrible delivering the news and apologized to everyone. That really upset Haruhime, who passionately told him not to apologize for saving Wiene — as he had saved her before. Her zeal compelled her to get too close to Bell. That was too much for Lili, who pulled Haruhime’s tail. It was funny seeing her rubbing her tail later.
Irina, I don’t think we’ve seen a mission before, have we? What’d you think at this point?
Missions Make Sense
I don’t remember a mission either, certainly not one for the Hestia familia. Then again for a long time there were just the two of them so that’s not really enough to entrust a mission to.
The thing is, it didn’t really surprise me. Like it felt completely normal that the Guild would occasionally give out mandatory missions to members. And I’m not sure if that is because I’ve seen something similar in another anime. Maybe Fairy Tail or something like that. Or maybe it’s because it was mentioned in past seasons but wasn’t a plot point. Like maybe it was rattled off in the rules of the guild or it was given to a different familia offscreen. In any case I didn’t really think anything special of it. It just sort of hit me as a normal thing that happened in the setting.
Obviously the timing was suspicious but it could still have been a coincidence.
Then again maybe I’m a little slow this morning. So I’m just sort of going along with the flow of anything the story wants to tell me.
Hestia Gets a Mission of her Own in DanMachi III Episode 3
Hestia seemed almost chipper to receive a mission of her own. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
Hestia seemed really intent when she read the mission, and after she saw her familia off into the dungeon, she met the hooded servant of Ouranos. Apparently, the mission had divine writing on the borders. The servant led Hestia into a strange underground passage. Personally, Hestia’s bravery impressed me, though I suppose she’s a god and they have a different perspective of the world. When she emerged in a huge underground chamber, there was Ouranos on his throne. She confirmed her suspicion that it was him who was behind the guild’s mission, and she was less than happy when he said he hoped her familia would make it to the 20th floor. The dungeon is, after all, dangerous, even with divine good will.
Hestia seemed a lot less flighty in this sequence (and in DanMachi III Episode 3 in general). What did you think, Irina?
Well, I know that IIWTTTPUGIAD has a very liberal interpretation of mythology, but Uranus is still one of the most important and leading gods in the pantheon. He is the personification of heaven. I would figure even a laid back god such a Hestia must feel some reverence in his presence.
This said, he is generally not a particularly malicious god. Especially by the standards of his mythology where there were quite a few pretty harsh gods.
Even if he was though, I’m sure Hestia would have gone anywhere if she thought it was for Bell’s benefit. That’s sort of her entire character. It would have been super inconsistent if she held back just cause she thought it was scary.
Hestia’s devotion to Bell is a foundation of the series. She was certainly upset with Ouranos for not providing more assurances about Bell’s descent to level 20! Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
The Descent to Level 20 in DanMachi III Episode 3
Good Teamwork for the Hestia Familia
Bell led his team into the dungeon. We got to see some decent action, and by the time they neared their destination, Mikoto Yamato pulled Bell aside and asked if he had noticed that most of the monsters attacked Wiene, forcing them to defend her. Of course, he had noticed.
They heard strange singing — a siren’s song of sorts. They followed it into a secret passage. Though Mikoto couldn’t detect any monsters, which was her speciality, Bell knew they were being watched.
Is this something this has been established? Did Bell always have a spidey sense? Or was it just a normal fine honed adventurers sense of danger that was used to advance this episode.
In any case it was good. A lot of shows fall into the trap of making their lead so overpowered that it trivializes the stakes and makes it hard to create a plot with any real conflict or tension. But I think IIWTTTPUGIAD may have gone a bit too hard the other way. Bell is unexplainably beloved by all and it seems he magically gets his way all the time, but in situations of dangers he so often has to be saved by everyone else that he was starting to look like more of a liability in a dungeon than an asset. It’s sort of nice to see him illustrated with some practical skills. It’s been a while.
Mikoto and Bell worked very well together in this episode. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
I don’t remember Bell having such a sense before; I think Mikoto mentioning her ability was the first I’d heard of it.
Monsters Surround Hestia Familia
But Bell was right. They were surrounded. But not by normal monsters. They were surrounded by dozens of monsters — in armor! They had weapons, too. A huge lizard man attacked Bell, and in seconds, the entire party was under siege.
As good as they were, the odds were wildly against them. Bell found himself slammed against a pillar. Lili and Haruhime were the only two still guarding Wiene. Mikoto and Welf had been pulled away. The lizard man lunged at Wiene. Seeing the imminent danger, Mikoto and Welf pulled back and managed to block the blow. It was a stalemate, though — neither side could force the other aside. That’s when Bell invoked Argonaut and with a single punch, sent the lizard man across the hall.
Where he landed, laughing in delight. All of the monsters there could talk, and having encountered humans before, they were testing Bell and company’s resolve: Would they abandon Wiene when things got tough?
Irina, what’d you think? Did that feel contrived to you? Or was this just DanMachi’s brand of subtle?
A Reasonable Progression for DanMachi III Episode 3
Did I mention I was happy just going along with the episode? I didn’t even think about it. I have to say, I think you’re being a bit hard on IIWTTTPUGIAD this season Crow. It’s always been very obvious with its messages. I don’t think this season is any different. In fact, I think last season was a bit worse. I had trouble not just constantly rolling my eyes through the Haruhime arc. I think this season is very obvious but in a sort of charming, well-meaning way. I’m having fun with it. Obviously there was going to be a band of smart monsters and obviously they were going to meet up with the heroes soon. I mean they are in the OP so it’s not like the show meant it as a twist after all…
We met a whole bunch of new talking monsters this episode. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
And obviously they were going to be more welcoming and kind than the surface dwellers as they called them. Since they aren’t all human I think this is a good term.
I really liked the lizard guy’s voice actor. He oozed friendliness in his tone. I wanted to shake his hand…
I wouldn’t say I’m being hard on it; I’m just trying to restrain my delight at the show! I mean, it would be undignified if I just “squeeee!” though the whole episode! Pretty uninteresting to read, too.
The talking monsters call themselves Xenos, and they have high hopes for their friendship with Hestia Familia. And speaking of Hestia, Ouranos basically told her the same thing her familia had learned. He added a bit of pressure, saying that he had been protecting the talking monsters and looked to her for help. “You are the bridge to their co-existence” with humans, he told her.
The Main Conflict is Now Clear
So now the season’s main conflict is clear: the townspeople are up in arms about the monster that had “attacked” the young girl in the previous episode. Ouranos looks to Hestia familia to help protect Xenos. And Wiene is Xenos’ poster child.
Irina, any closing thoughts?
You know, there’s a reason the term Xenophobia caught on so much more than the term Xenophilia. That name doesn’t bode too well for our new assorted friends. In fact, they should have called them Philoi instead, that would have been a much more auspicious name.
How much better will things be when we figure out how to set our perception of differences as default good rather than default bad? Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
I enjoyed this episode and I’m enjoying the season. I have a feeling that we are in for some very hamfisted messages about accepting those that are different than us, but I’m o.k. With that. I watch IIWTTTPUGIAD for the pretty artwork and likeable characters. Besides, I don’t disagree that we should accept those that are different so I’m on board with the message.
I would be very surprised if they pulled the rug out from under us and all the monsters regressed to violent beasts that kill a whole bunch of innocent people. And the message of the season is: Don’t trust anyone different than you ever!
Good callout on Philoi. Fear of others was fine when our survival depended on our own tribe. In a complex society, we need a better default!
How Far Will the Conflict Go?
I wonder if they will ever broach the subject that adventurers have been more or less mindlessly murdering their kind for a long time. I mean Bell (and all the others) never really asked any questions when going into dungeons before. They saw a monster, they killed and reaped rewards. For all we know, a lot of them may have had the ability to speak. They just weren’t as cute and scared as Wiene. They may have simply been trying to defend themselves when attacking. So far, the question hasn’t been raised at all but it could prove for some interesting dialogue.
It’s an interesting question. What if some proportion of the monsters they’ve killed are intelligent? Are their eyes glowing read because they’re being controlled? Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.
I think it’s be amazing if the show went that far!
And like you, even if it’s obvious, I like the message. I liked the touch of Haruhime reassuring Bell at the beginning of the episode. It was a clear reminder that we’re on familiar (familia?) ground. This is just the next logical progression!
Reviews of the Other Episodes
- Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? III Episode 1 – Dungeons and Wyverns
- Is It Wrong to Try To Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? III Episode 2: Coexistence And Lili’s Foot In Mouth Disease
- Is It Wrong to Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon? III Episode 3 – The Mission To Level 20
- Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? III Episode 4 – Told You He Was A Dix
- Is It Wrong To Try To Pick Up Girls In A Dungeon? III Episode 5 – Gros Isn’t Wrong