Maid Madness is cuter than march madness, marble madness, and space madness but leaves you with a distinctly dirtier feeling than the other three. This episode of Fate/kaleid spends most of its first half soaking in the fetish of domestic servants in frills. But it is mostly just a needed break between dramatic events. After the three episodes of battle a bit of comedic refreshment is welcome considering how much this show is ostensibly comedic. But this being Fate/kaleid that also means awkward and skeevy fan service. Don’t worry there is some real story at the end.
On a tangentially related note if you ever really needed a refresher on how Fate/kaleid characters are different from their Fate/Stay Night counterpoints the simplest reminder is oddly enough the 9th chapter of the All Around Type-Moon manga. It has Prisma Illya and Miyu meeting Fate/Stay Night Rin. Sadly the manga ends just before the best meeting really started.
That also makes me think. When are we going to get the Army of Saber clones vs. all the Rin and Sakura variants crossover manga.
After a night of unleashing hidden powers, the true might of the Archer card, and a can of whup-ass Illya finally awakens with no memories of her transformation from the night before. But this leads her to bonding with Miyu and really solidifying their friendship. But all of that changes when Assassin attacks.
Illya gets a day off from school when Sella notices she has a bit of a fever. It quickly becomes clear that Illya assumes that Miyu crushed Saber on her own after she passed out. Ruby is apparently under the same impression since she was stuck underground with the unconscious Rin and Luvia. You get a bit of an impression that Illya is feeling like a loser. In her eyes Miyu has defeated 3 or 5 cards they have and she has done jack and squat.
But Illya quickly realizes one thing: being home when your sick is BORING. And since she is not actually feeling ill after some rest she is quickly stir crazy.
But someone else is at home as well. Her new partner and rival is also at her much more luxurious home for the day. So Ruby activates another of her less than amazing but more than useless abilities to act as a cellphone so she can contact Sapphire and by extension Miyu. After a bit of a chat it seems everyone notices that the night’s events have opened Miyu’s heart a bit which leads Ruby to active her videophone capabilities. This allows a somewhat “shocking secret” to be revealed. It turns out that Miyu is a servant at the Edelfelt mansion. She is not some spoiled ward but in fact a maid.
Bit Illya has no shame in her game when her maid switch is activated like she was Kaoru Akashi (I guess that makes Miyu her Yuuri Kumoi in this case). At this point there are two major feelings at play. There is the touching growing bond between Miyu and Illya as they begin to see past the others one’s barriers and become real friends. At the same time there is also just Illya touching Miyu in her maid outfit. That is far less heartwarming. If it warms any other part of your body you can keep that information to yourself.
Also at this time Sapphire sneak away and tells Ruby what happened the night before while Ruby was still stuck underground. They both realize that the seemingly random girl they picked up to be a heroine has more to her than they first suspected. Also we get some Kohaku is a pervert jokes. Technically they are Ruby is a pervert jokes BUT since Ruby is essentially Kohaku in magic wand form my statement still stands.
I am still a human so this is all you are going to see of “that” scene. Sufficed there are some skinship, attempted sponge bathing, and people walking in at the wrong time jokes. I would say people getting the wrong idea jokes but with how Illya was behaving I’m not sure they are misinterpreting anything.
But apparently all the proper maid outfits in one day have re-awakened Sella TRUE MAID SPIRIT™. Sadly her very traditional much less fetishy (or should I say fetishy in a different way) German maid’s outfit does nothing for Illya. Sella sure gets the short end of the stick with most things. Side Note: Did Leysritt just fall off the face of the earth this episode? Is she off shopping? Fighting in Fate/Unlimited Codes?
But now that both girls have rested up there are still two cards to get. At first the sealed space they have to fight in seems empty. And REALLY that should have been the first sign or two of who was waiting for them. The only cards (that they know of) that are left are the Assassin Card and the Berserker Card. And there is no way you would be able to miss a Berserker Card in the area. It is like missing the bull smashing up a small china shop. So there is no good excuse for them not realizing which card this should be. But I suppose that is just how characters roll.
Despite getting a bit of spidey sense Illya winds up getting nicked by a throwing blade. At first it seems harmless but soon it is shown that the attack did not have to really injure her to be effective. At first Illya’s movements are a bit off. Then she loses her voice. After that the paralysis begins to set in.
It is interesting that they actually went with Fate/Zero Assassin. Every card so far has been based on a Fate/Stay Night character. But one of the two Servants classes to have multiple entries in one slot in the original story it the assassin class that has neither used in Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya. Neither Caster’s Assassin or Zouken Matou’s True Assassin show up here. Poor Sasaki Kojirou. He never gets any respect so I guess that is why they did not pick him. It is a little odd they did not go with True Assassin. He seems the most logical choice. I guess Hiroshi Hiroyama just liked swarm of assassins as a visual effect better.
The one benefit is that it does open the door for other Heroic Spirits to come into play down the line.
This is probably the closest an Assassin has become to be really effective. (Other than the time True Assassin killed Lancer. But it’s Lancer. He was just doomed to die. It is less a matter of “if” and more a matter of “when.”) So when the army of Assassins show up the band of 4 magical ladies quickly asses that being surrounded in an open field is not the best place to take a stand. This leads them to try to choose a more suitable place to fight as quickly as possible. But what the party has seemed to miss is that Illya is not doing to well. So when the poison finally catches up to her with full paralysis the group has run far enough ahead in their retreat that Illya becomes the prime target for a hail of dirks. Rin, Luvia,and Miyu go back to try to help but there is no way for them to make it in time. Illya is almost frozen in time. She can’t move and avoid the projectiles about to skewer her and she quickly realizes that her friends are not going to make it in time to save her but are probably going to get caught in the rain of daggers as well.
And so the hidden power in Illya explodes again. This time instead of activating a card she merely lets loose a tremendous mana storm of destitution. All the Assassin in the area as wiped out quicker than when they were in the caught in the Ionioi Hetairoi. But everything is not hunky dory. It seems that while the Assassin were killed the same thing almost happened to Miyu and the bickering witches as well. If Miyu had thrown up her barrier a second later they would have all been crispy critters. This leads Miyu to let loose a maelstrom upon Illya. If Illya cannot control her power than she has no place as a magical girl. She should just quit before she hurts someone else.
This of course causes the already shaken Illya to run home swearing off being a magical girl for good. It is clear that Miyu is trying to be cruel to be kind. She more wants Illya to just go back to being a normal girl and let the burden fall on her least Illya be killed. But of course there is no dramatic tension if that happens.
The next episode is the return to normalcy. In many (but not all) magical girl shows there is the episode were the protagonist decides to give up the big quest and just return to a life of ignorance. The red pill was a bit too strong so they decide maybe the blue pill will be better. Of course that cannot stay that way. So we are going to need some big guns to shake things up. Oh and fan service. Fan service will have to be brought in to fix things.
Because this is still Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya.