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Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table Episode 11 Review

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Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table Episode 11 Review – Quick Summary

In Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table Episode 11, “Despair Genius,” Minori found herself in a terrible situation. The Genius Ereinus had created a raid map that looked just like Akiba, including the Guild Hall. Worse, all Adventurers over level 65 realized their levels had plummeted to 35. The raid monsters made quick work of them. That left the Adventurers who had lower ranks, with one exception: Akatsuki, who had used the teaching system to lower her level just before Erenius had struck. Now, armed with her experience, the raid materials she’d purchased before with Shiroe, and some notes about monster behaviors from Rieze, Minori had to do what she’d never done before: Run a raid. Against a Genius, no less! Is she up to the task? Can she could on her friends like Isuzu for help? And just what is Ereinus capable of doing?

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Favorite Quote from Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table Episode 11

Yupia seemed excited to have a chance to prove herself after the Hamelin incident. Capture from the Funimation stream.

I really like how Log Horizon builds on what’s come before, both in terms of simple plot developments and lore. Back in the first season’s episode 5 and episode 6, Shiroe had to deal with a dire situation: After the Apocalypse, the Hamelin guild began recruiting children and lower-level players under the guise of protecting them and giving them a place to belong and to live. Unfortunately, Hamelin’s true purpose had nothing to do with the kids’ well being. The guild exploited them for labor and sold their artifacts for a profit. They also punished the kids — harshly — if they tried to stand up for themselves or their friends.

Minori and her brother Touya had met Shiroe in the game. He’d been teaching them, and he considered them friends. He’d lost contact with them after the rush of events following the Apocalypse. When he became aware of their plight, though… Let’s just say that when he was done with them, the Hamelin guild was no more.

What I never considered was how that operation looked from the kids’ point of view. Certainly, they were happy to be rescued. But they had their pride. They’d felt humiliated that they’d needed to be rescued. So that’s why I picked this quote as my favorite of the episode.

After Minori explained the plan, Yupia snapped her whip and said (06:10), “So it’s like a do-over of that time, huh?”

All of the kids seemed to agree. They saw this raid as a chance to prove themselves. I’m a bit of a sucker for moments like that!

Best in Show Moment for Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table Episode 11

Of everyone in the raid party, Akatsuki’s personality showed the most strength against Ereinus’ attack. Capture from the Funimation stream.

Setup: Ereinus’ Brutally Effective Attack

I had wondered what made Ereinus the Genius of Despair. Well, now we know. I want to give credit to the Reddit thread about this episode for clarifying the implications of Ereinus’ attack. During the second stage of the battle, Ereinus asked about everyone’s “subject for veneration.” Basically, it got everyone to think of who they respected.

Then it stole those memories for energy.

We knew that when people die and are resurrected in this world, they lose some unknown number of memories. We don’t know why, or at least I don’t know why. But now we see Ereinus enticing the group to remember people who are important to them so it can harvest those memories. That’s chilling.

Minori, of course, remember Shiroe. Rudy thought of Isuzu and she remembered him. Seeing their reaction to losing those memories was darkly effective. Log Horizon doesn’t often go dark, but when it does, it does with with dramatic effectiveness.

The more I thought about it, the more cruel Ereinus’ attack felt. Capture from the Funimation stream.

I suspect it didn’t help that these kids had lingering doubts about their own abilities, given what had happened with Hamelin. As Yupia’s quote showed, they all felt like they had something to prove. So in this battle, just after enjoying a little early success, they had to feel devastated when Ereinus easily and effectively stopped them in their tracks. Even worse, Ereinus kept up a monologue that stressed how their “objects of veneration” would not come to save them — the implication being that even now, after all this time, they still needed to be saved.

Delivery: Attacking from a Strong Foundation

This was not a battle Minori was equipped to win. As Ereinus hammered home the idea that her hero would not come to save her, Minori tried harder and harder to express her faith in Shiroe. She tried harder and harder to hold onto the hope that he would not have fallen. She protested that Shiroe was strong. That was exactly the wrong tactic. Shiroe had fallen, as he knew he would. Shiroe could not come, as he foresaw. Each time Ereinus attacked Minori, she lost more memories of Shiroe, and as she lost her memories, her despair grew. When Ereinus bounded towards her in what he undoubtedly intended as its finishing move, Minori could only stare in horror.

Ereinus’ attacks left Minori unable to defend herself. Capture from the Funimation stream.

This is where experience and maturity pay off. Akatsuki’s sword flashed out of nowhere and defected Ereinus’ attack. Akatsuki long ago left her hero worship of Shiroe behind. As we’ve seen in the last several episodes, especially episode 8, she and Shiroe have a mature, emotionally stable relationship. They know each other and trust each other.

“My lord was never a hero from the start,” Akatsuki said (22:29). “He’s not the subject for veneration. My lord is… my lord!”

Akatsuki couldn’t despair of her hero saving her because a) he wasn’t her hero to begin with and b) she never expected to be saved. She expected to do the saving. So though she took damage from Ereinus’ attack, it affected her less than the others. Now, with Akatsuki standing strong against Ereinus’ main attack, the kids have a chance. Though Touya’s apparent death with zero hit points reduces their offensive capability…

What did you think of Soujirou Seta leading some of the monsters away to give the kids more time? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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