The Journey of Elaina Episode 5: Elaina is not a fan of flirting
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Wandering Witch: The Journey of Elaina Episode 5 Review – Best In Show

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Wandering Witch: The Journey of Elaina Episode 5 Review – Quick Summary

In Wandering Witch: The Journey of Elaina Episode 5, “Royal Celesteria,” Elaina arrives in the city Celesteria, which has a high population of mages and witches. At first, she really enjoyed site-seeing. The city had beautiful architecture, and there were mages everywhere. There were street performers, mail men on brooms, even broom taxis! She came upon an ornate school, and on closer examination, saw it was the Royal Academy of Magic. Delighted, she let herself in. A guard immediately stopped her. He relented when he saw her witch’s broach, then reluctantly told her she had to have authorization. Disappointed, she took to the skies, only to be blocked by two younger mages. They asked — with forced politeness — if she would follow them, no questions asked. She would not. She suddenly realized she was surrounded by dozens of them, who tried to seize her.

Who were these people? Why did they want to abduct her? And what was she going to do about it?

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

Favorite Quote from Wandering Witch: The Journey of Elaina Episode 5

The Journey of Elaina Episode 5: Elaina was gracious enough to give her attackers advice

Elaina was really polite considering her situation. Capture from the Hulu stream.

Elaina’s confidence is important. In fact, it probably saved several students’ lives. We know that Elaina’s repertoire includes attack magic because we saw her use it against Fran in the first episode. We saw her ready to use it against the dragon in the fourth episode.

When confronted by a dozen or more potential assailants, someone with less confidence might have panicked and gone on the offensive against them.

Instead, Elaina felt so confident in her abilities that she led them on an exhausting chase. She finally had seen enough to know they were mostly harmless, so she even tried to give them pointers.

“You really should open your eyes,” Elaina told Odoko as the youngster, her eyes closed, tried to tackle Elaina.

She gets points for being a good sport in spite of the reception she received!

Best in Show Moment for Wandering Witch: The Journey of Elaina Episode 5

The Journey of Elaina Episode 5: Elaina considered leaving without saying goodbye

Elaina said she didn’t want to wait because the flowers might trigger sad memories later. I think there was something else going on. Capture from the Hulu stream.

Setup: Calm Under Fire

In my Favorite Quote section above, I suggested that Elaina’s confidence had a lot to do with how she reacted to the sudden onslaught. That played a part, but by the end of the episode, I wondered if something else was going on.

While growing up on the farm, I learned something about myself. My brain has two modes: normal, where I doubt everything I think, say, or do; and crisis mode. In crisis mode, everything it utterly clear. There’s no doubt or hesitation. There is only execution. Let me give you an example.

At its height, our farm included a dairy lot. We preferred Holsteins, and our operation including breeding so we could keep our stocks up. Well, we had a bull that hated humans. As in, bull see human, bull try to kill human. I had to be careful when I drove the feed wagon not to ever let the bull get between me and the tractor. One day, I almost proved the adage that I couldn’t concentrate to save my life. I forgot. The bull reminded me.

The Journey of Elaina Episode 5: The attack was surprising

This was Elaina’s equivalent of the bull challenging me. Except more aerial. Capture from the Hulu stream.

I forgot because I was probably thinking about something I wanted to write or some girl I wanted to “go steady” with. This was 30 or 40 years ago, after all.

I knew the feed lot like the back of my hand. I’d cleaned it off enough using a Bobcat! Before my conscious mind could really grasp that the bull was about to mash me flat, I had run off at a right angle and hauled myuself over the fence.

That’s the same mode that Elaina when she realized she was surrounded.

Delivery: Elaina Processes Emotion Like I Do!

I’ve read a lot of discussion about how Elaina reacts to people and situations. While I’ve in general been very supportive of Elaina, I’ll admit that some of her decisions have felt a little… disassociated. Not cold. Not “off.” But not what I’d expect from a young woman.

I think I know what’s going on. Look at her conversation with Fran the day before Elaina was going to leave. Sure, Fran seemed fixated on butterflies and flowers, and Elaina reacted with some confusion. But I also sensed an under current of unease. This was an unstructured conversation. Elaina wasn’t sure of her role, and I think that made her uncomfortable.

My favorite moment came the next morning. Elaina arrived where Frans said she’d meet her to say goodbye. Fran wasn’t there, and Elaina reflected that maybe if Fran gave her flowers, seeing those type of flower in another country would make her sad. So she decided to leave without waiting (20:11).

The Journey of Elaina Episode 5: Elaina considered leaving

Fran wasn’t there, and that gave Elaina a chance to consider leaving. Capture from the Hulu stream.

Seems rude, doesn’t it? Well, I’ve lived that moment. More than once. The emotions around parting, plus the thought of seeing someone else upset, is more than I want to deal with. Sure, I make an excuse, just like Elaina did, but the real reason is a deep-seated discomfort with emotional scenes. They’re exhausting and they’re awkward. They’re unstructured.

In that moment, I saw myself in Elaina’s hesitation. I’m no clinician. I’m not claiming that Elaina is on the autism spectrum. What I am suggesting is that there’s something in her reactions that’s not rudeness, or arrogance. I think it’s intentional. If it is, I’m really looking forward to how her character develops.

What did you think of Elaina dodging the blonde pretty-boy’s advances? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!

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4 thoughts on “Wandering Witch: The Journey of Elaina Episode 5 Review – Best In Show

    1. I was actually a little surprised that Elaina didn’t bring that up. Did she compartmentalize it? I doubt she forgot about it for lack of interest… She seemed creeped out when it happened.

      Which is probably an under-reaction, which plays into my theory that she’s wired differently than most people. It’s a schematic I recognize too well!

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