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The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14: Favorites

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The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14 – Quick Summary

In The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14, “Your Life, Your Wish,” Olivier had plunged her sword through Cid. Jack Nelson looked triumphant. Aurora looked stricken. Cid looked… exultant? What’s that about? How can he look so happy when the point of Olivier’s sword is protruding from his chest? And why has he been keeping his right eye shut all this time?

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

Favorite Quote from The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14

The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14: I applaud Cid's willingness to help

Cid is surprisingly forthcoming with public service announcements! Capture from the HIDIVE stream.

This show keeps the antics of an overpowered hero (anti-hero? hero-parallel?) interesting. They gave us a villain in Jack Nelson whose primary goal is to look like a buffoon. And I must say – the dude mailed it. Every time he tried to escalate the conflict, his plans flopped, and his every-increasing horror was hilarious.

Another way the show keeps Cid interesting is through humor. My favorite quote for the episode is an example of that. Olivier had just stabbed Cid from behind, yet he was fine. Fine enough, in fact, to rip out Olivier’s throat with his teeth.

Reminded me a bit of an episode of The Walking Dead, back when I liked it.

When Nelson expressed his disbelief, Cid took a moment to deliver a public service announcement.

“As long as you protect the vitals,” he said cordially (03:01), “the human body is surprisingly sturdy.”

I appreciated him taking time out of his busy schedule to remind us of that important fact!

Favorite Moment from The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14

The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14: Alpha remembered her role with fondness

Alpha basked in a moment of contentment. Her efforts had given all of them a place to live and belong. It’s no wonder she felt good about it. Capture from the HIDIVE stream.

Setup: Full Spectrum Emotions

I like a show that can go from “I am the All-Range Atomic” (06:17) to “Thank you for the precious memory” (09:06) to Zeta looking at penguins (15:40) and make them all feel right. That tells me the writer has a solid handle on tone and pacing.

The great thing about mixing humorous and poignant moments is that they enhance each other. Character-based humor, like Beta mercilessly teasing Alexia, makes later moments more compelling. Remember when Alexia floated the idea of working with Beta and Rose? When they all agreed to work together, when they clasped hands, that moment felt real to me. Maybe the humor invited me to think more kindly of the characters; maybe they felt more real because of that humor. Whatever the reason, the show presents a wide range of emotions in resonant contexts, and I love it.

The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14: The show can handle delicate emotions and boisterous action with ease

The show can portray dynamic moments of combat with ease. Capture from the HIDIVE stream.

That kind of resonance is the reason I chose this moment as my favorite. In the Shadow Garden base of operations, things appeared typically hectic. One of them was worried about Delta, but another said not to – Delta would come home when it got cold out. Epsilon began playing a slow piano piece, which provided the background for the scene. Beta sat, deeply in thought about a sentence she was trying to write. Two other members of Shadow Garden played chess in the background.

Delivery: An Expertly Set Stage

Alpha happened to walk by (16:04). Glancing in, she stopped, then turned to take in the scene. She smiled. She remembered back to a time shortly after Cid had cured her. He had apparently also explained wood-framed housing to her, because they had built a house that looked a lot like a typical Japanese home. Inside were the younger versions of Beta, Zeta, Gamma, and a few others.

Alpha was quietly pleased – she had finished building their early base. She told Cid that with this home, she could start training the core members of Shadow Garden properly. Cid wasn’t convinced that was necessary, but she assured him it was. They planned to take on the Cult of Diablos, after all.

The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14: Alpha put together a home, physically and emotionally

Alpha put this home together – physically and emotionally. Capture from the HIDIVE stream.

“Yeah, I guess that’s how the story would work,” Cid said (16:46). He still thought this was all a game. But for Alpha, it was another important step in the journey she had decided to take. It marked another milestone on her trek from diseased outcast with no control over her destiny to one of the prime movers in that world.

It was her contented smile that wrapped up the scene (17:15).

I guess I should add that it’s not just humor and emotionally strong moments that make a series memorable. A show has to have characters I care about. Seeing Alpha smile, reveling in the moment of reflection over her shared achievement, I realized I like her and the other core members. I want them to succeed; I like seeing them have the power to direct their own journeys.

That’s an impressive accomplishment! It’s something I hope I can reproduce in my books

What did you think of Aurora’s parting words to Cid? What were your favorite moments in this episode? Feel free to let me know in the comments!

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4 thoughts on “The Eminence in Shadow Episode 14: Favorites

  1. By the way, when Cid unleashed the All-Range Atomic, the Olivier clone smiled.

    Aurora wants Cid to kill her.

    1. I saw that smile. Do you think Aurora as embodied within the captured arm wanted to die? Do you think the rest of her also wanted die? Or is there no contact between her disjoined selves?

      This show makes good use of those little moments to open a view into a character’s potential. It’s like an invitation for my imagination to participate.

  2. The villain after seeing Cid take what would normally be a mortal injury and then turn it around to rip the clone Olivier’s throat out with his teeth:

    “Are you sure you’re all right in the head?”

    Me: Hey, someone in that universe actually asked that question out loud! (applauds!)

    So now we know that Aurora is Diablos, the Witch of Calamity, and the one Cid has been interacting with has been only the arm that was cut off and chained. And was being very uncooperative with the Cult, but they were getting what they wanted anyway, albeit with greater difficulty. This leaves the rest of her still out there somewhere, but doing what?

    I took note of that smile Alpha had on her face when she knew Cid was blowing up the sanctuary. That was some well-deserved satisfaction, I would say. She’s been doing very well, right from the start, and it was interesting how Rose and Alexia started saying something similar to what Alpha said when she met Cid, about recruiting and building an HQ and such, but it was less complete. The woman processed things fast right after coming out of being possessed, and instantly formulated a plan with goals, which she has worked towards very capably. Though Cid clearly left an impression on her, as he refers to the Olivier clones as scarecrows, just like Alpha referred to the cult guy’s clones.

    And the younger versions of the Seven Shadows were so adorably cute!

    Speaking of, we’re getting to know them and other members of Shadow Garden a bit better, very gradually. It’s unusual to have that process still ongoing, even in its beginning stages, during climactic confrontations with powerful cultists, clone armies, and shards of demon lords, but it seems to be working.

    1. That had to be seriously humiliating for Nelson to realize Cid was just playing (I’m going to try to be charitable and say Cid is creative). Nothing Nelson threw at it had any chance of beating him.

      Good questions about Aurora/Diablos. How much of what we think we know about her is real? The villains make up the Cult of Diablos — but what about Diablos herself? What if she’s someone like Cid who didn’t have the good fortunate to accidentally found Shadow Garden?

      Yeah, the events in the episode had to kindle no small satisfaction in Alpha. I adore the way the series portrays her, and you described why.

      It’s a lot of fun learning more and more about the member of Shadow Garden. I’m looking forward to more! I understand this season is projected to be 20 episodes. I’ll be bummed if we don’t get more, yet happy we didn’t stop at 12!

Please let me know what you think!

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