Log Horizon: Episode 23 – “Student of the Mage”

Log Horizon is an anime that tells the tale of what happens when players of the MMORPG game, Elder Tale, mysteriously find themselves actually inside the game after the 12th expansion, “Novasphere Pioneers,” is added. The main character of the series is Shiroe, and he is joined by his two companions Naotsugu and Akatsuki. As the series progresses, they are joined by other characters as they figure out how to live within the world of the game.

The entirety of episode 23 focuses on the second day of the Scale Festival. There are several scenes where we see the protagonists enjoying themselves at the festival and witnessing confrontations between the People of the Land and the adventurers. After Shiroe himself witnesses one of the confrontations, he has a feeling that the People of the Land are acting strangely; however, he isn’t able to get a clear enough picture to understand it.

Meanwhile, Minori goes to see Karashin about getting an invitation to the Twilight Banquet. She sees that he’s busy, and she volunteers to help. We learn that she’s changed to the apprentice subclass, and that she has become Shiroe’s student. As she works at going through the paperwork, she discovers that some of it overlaps, some of the math is wrong, and there’s a large number of very basic errors. The majority of this paperwork is from People of the Land. When she relays this information to Shiroe, he realizes that he’s let his guard down and that someone is attacking Akihabara.

I was glad to see that Minori was not only able to help Karashin with his backlog of work, but she was able to provide the final key of the puzzle for Shiroe to realize what’s really going on. By being able to help Shiroe, she’s also able to help Akihabara in her own way.

While there were the occasional confrontations that we saw, this still had an overall feeling of being a light-hearted episode. However, when Shiroe made his realization near the end of the episode, I realized that the audience had been lulled into a false sense of security. Something will definitely be happening, and I have a feeling it’s going to take place over the final two episodes that remain for Log Horizon.

In the midst of all this, there’s a rather amusing scene between Princess Lenessia and Crusty. It was the most light-hearted moment of the episode, and this light-heartedness was really needed right before the story built up the conflicts with the People of the Land and the realization that an attack is imminent.

So, it looks like I may have been wrong yet again about how this series will be ending over the next couple of episodes. At this point, it appears that the festival will be finishing off the series, with a major conflict or battle taking place before it ends. I’m looking forward to seeing episode 24, and I hope to find out how exactly the festival will be disrupted.

Additional posts about Log Horizon:

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