Anime Spotlight: Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table

Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table is the third season of the Log Horizon anime series. It was produced by Studio Deen and was directed by Shinji Ishihara. The series aired in Japan from January 13-March 31, 2021. As of this writing, FUNimation Entertainment holds the North American license for Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table.

At the beginning of the first episode, a year has passed since the “Apocalypse,” and the season opens with the end of the Round Table Conference as it was designed and implemented in the first and second seasons of the anime. The demise of the Round Table Conference is brought about by Eins, the Guild Master for Honesty. His guild has faced issues from their fellow adventurers due to not having success on their research into Fairy Rings. Eins himself is facing increased scrutiny from other members of the Round Table with some of the actions he’s taken as a Guild Master. This leads to a contentious meeting of the conference, and Eins’ withdrawal of himself and Honesty from the Round Table. It’s quickly revealed that the Holy Empire Westeland has made Eins into a duke. He declares that he will found the Government of Akiba.

At the same this this is going on, Princess Rayneshia (also known as Lenessia) learns from her mother that she is in an arranged engagement with the head of a noble family from the Holy Empire Westeland. When Lord Malves arrives from Westeland as a messenger, Rayneshia lets him know that she has an obligation to Akiba. Malves counters that Eins, who is now a duke, can fulfill that role. While Rayneshia is rebuffing the engagement, Shiroe meets with Eins. They agree to hold an election, where the people will determine whether they want Eins’ Government of Akiba or a restructured Round Table Conference, which would also include Rayneshia and other notable People of the Land.

The first five episodes of Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table focus on political machinations, which ultimately lead up to an election, which is a foreign concept to the People of the Land. It was quite amusing to watch Eins and Rayneshia campaigning. The actual election episode went a lot differently than I had expected, but I think the way it was handled worked well for the series. The political intrigue made for an interesting angle, and it also gave the adventurers another way to introduce a new concept into the world of the game.

We then get two episodes giving the audience the answer as to what happened to Krusty after he disappeared during Log Horizon 2. I enjoyed seeing Misa and Rieze putting on a puppet show in order to make sure that all of the characters they’re relaying Krusty’s message to understand what’s happening. I thought this was a creative way to provide framing for these two episodes. When the audience sees what happened, we don’t get the puppet show version. But that’s OK, because the audience doesn’t need the puppet show version to understand the ideas and concepts being presented.

Near the end of the season, the audience is introduced to Lelia and Litka Mofur, a pair of Wolf Fang Druid-Collector sisters. These sisters are older characters from the earlier days of the game, when players were sent on clunky quests, such as collecting dragon scales. Let’s just say the Mofur Sisters had developed a bad reputation for taking items from the adventurers are not taking better care of the items. The cave they were in was sealed off, and so the younger adventurers had no clue about their existence until they show up in the story. Over the remaining episodes, the sisters prove themselves and become important characters in their own right.

The final few episodes of the series focus on relationships, especially on Akatsuki and Minori’s interest in Shiroe. The audience is given a hint that perhaps Shiroe has developed feelings for Akatsuki right before the final battle that the younger adventurers have against a Genius that brings about despair. The more experienced players are sent into an “Instance” and have their levels dropped dramatically. But since the younger adventurers and Akatsuki (who had lowered her level in the teacher system to train the younger adventurers) were lower in level, they weren’t affected. Minori leads a raid party, and overall does a good job. However, since the Genius preys on the memories of the people that raid party members venerate, it looks like they will be defeated. However, Akatsuki has a more mature understanding of Shiroe and not an idealized version like Minori, so she is able to stand up to the Genius. In the end, it takes everyone, including the Mofur Sisters, to take down the Genius and free the other adventurers from the “Instance.” This was a nice climactic fight, and it also allowed the younger adventurers to grow as characters.

Right near the end of the last episode, Minori confesses to Shiroe that she loves him. But, Shiroe tells her that he thinks he’s in love with someone else, and from how he phrases things, it sounds an awful lot like the same thoughts he had in an earlier episode when he was with Akatsuki. It seems that the Akatsuki and Shiroe shippers may have some hope here. While I felt bad for Minori, I was glad that Shiroe shot her down. As Minori herself says, she’s just a child. It would have been awkward for an adult like Shiroe to return the feelings of a young girl like Minori. While Akatsuki may look young, she’s actually an adult like Shiroe.

I was a little bummed that Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table is only 12 episodes long, since the previous seasons lasted for two cours. However, even with the smaller amount of episodes, it still felt as if a lot of progress was made in the overall story. The way the final episode ended, it’s clear that there is the intention to have another season of Log Horizon. We’ll just have to wait and see just how long it’s going to take.

Additional posts about Log Horizon:

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