Kazuya and Victorique are out of the frying pan and into the fire. They escaped the chaos that was the Phantasmagoria festival only to wind up in a car filled with suspicious strangers. They are caught in the middle to a deadly game of cat and mouse that has spilled over from the events at Beelzebub’s Skull. Victorique must discover everyone’s agenda as the people quickly begin to remove all obstacles in between them and their missions. Including Kazuya and Victorique.
Finally a train mystery! Kinda. So even though Victorique and Kazuya escaped an impending flood, there were still questions that needed to be answered. The method for our murder from last episode is revealed rather quickly but the why doesn’t really make sense till later (though it is never explicitly stated). The agenda of each character in this episode makes for a complicated story. But if flies by so quickly, and with many players, so you don’t truly get a sense for them. And we even hear about a recently missing princess, and it also plays a role here. This episode does have a lot of exciting action and classic scenes like racing across the top of a moving train. Also, flaming raisins!
Right out of the gate we learn how Simon Hunt was killed using a slip knot. I was a little disappointed the answer to this murder was so simple. I’m fairly certain that means that Simon was an agent of the Science Academy who recovered the memento box and gave it to the Orphan in the crowd but I can’t be completely sure about that. If that is correct the Ministry of the Occult killed him in an attempt to get the memento box but it had already left his possession. With that mystery solved Kazuya and Victorique begin to relax a bit when they get on the train they soon realize they in the middle of a very tense stand-off. As soon as the Knight kills the Scarecrow things turn deadly. There are not that many mysteries per say but there is a good deal of suspense and intrigue. The poison in the ice cubes trick the Woodcutter uses is a classic of the mystery genre. It lets the poisoner remove suspicion from himself by drinking first but still kills the target. In fact I remember this trick being used on an episode of Monk recently. While this episode was not exactly the train mystery Narutaki was hoping for the action more than made up for it.
The pacing of this episode felt all wrong with people and moments coming much too fast to really enjoy, deduct, or digest what was happening. Even though this part of the story picks up from the previous, it still needed another episode to make it worthwhile. The reveal at the end was another interesting tidbit leading up to the grand finale so that was positive. And Victorique and Kazuya shooting from the front of the train was super cool!
We get some great deaths in this episode which is always a good thing. The Scarecrow’s death is pretty quick but her body being thrown from the train is a nice bit of flourish. The Knights death is the most iconic way to die during a train fight so you could not ask for anything more unless the Rail Tracer was involved. The Orphan’s death was a bit tragic and bittersweet. I wonder if we will ever learn anything else about her or did her story die with her. When all is said and done the big reveal of the arc that the memento box is that of Jupiter Roget and that he is a gray wolf. Apparently if that information was revealed it would destroy the Science Academy. But being able intercept the box lets Kazuya and Victorique finally get an upper hand while still letting the Scarecrow have the rest of the box to save his sister. I will say for someone who attempted to poison everyone at the table they let him go without so much as a slap on the wrist. I am curious how this new-found information about Jupiter Roget and the ring Victorique got from her mother is going to be used in these last few episodes. Clearly the little cold war between the Science Academy and the Ministry of the Occult had warmed up considerably so it is a matter of how Kazuya and Victorique will find a way to navigate the upcoming conflicts together.