Annotated Anime: Wizard Barristers, Ep. 9


The Passion of the Stabler

As the show gears up for its final arc, Chouno has officially had it with Cecil's crap, Quinn has officially had it with Stabler's crap, Sasori has officially had it with the lack of sexy time in the office, Ageha has officially had it with people having trust issues, and Hotaru has officially had it with being a bitch for no reason. I myself have officially had it with this show's approach to courtroom drama, but, much like many of the characters, I signed up for this so I just have to deal with it. Oh, and the Shark Knight dudes seem to be good guys, just like I predicted last week, so that's good I guess?

Bye Bye family

This week, the cold open finally fills us in on what happened six years ago that led to Cecil's mother being on WUD Death Row. Megumi's story is that there was a hostage situation and Cecil was shot, only when Megumi tried to bring Cecil to the hospital, the investigator who shot Cecil not only stood in her way, but tried to kill both of them. Desperate to save her dying daughter, Megumi used her magic on the investigator and killed him. Presumably, she then got Cecil to the hospital, but the episode leaves that up in the air.

The prosecution has two problems with this story: one, since there isn't any evidence that the investigator was trying to kill Megumi and Cecil, they think it's a case of "Excessive Self Defense." Wait, what? Once again, I'm not a legal expert or anything, but I'm pretty sure it's either self-defense or it isn't; there's no "Well, it seems like it was probably self-defense, but there's no hard evidence so we'll just call it excessive" clause. I mean, again, what?

But that's not all! The prosecution rejects the latter half of Megumi's story; they believe the part up to Cecil getting shot (I reckon the bullet wound made that hard to ignore) but they allege that Megumi just lashed out in rage with her magic and killed the inspector. What's messed up about this is that they frame it as a cold-blooded, calculated murder; like the situation of a woman seeing her only child shot in the chest right in front of her wouldn't make any difference to the law. I would think even a kangaroo court like this would make a distinction between a murder of passion and premeditated murder, but apparently not so much.

Oh, and Cecil's childhood friend (that we just learned about last episode) is the son of the investigator Megumi killed. I'm trying to care about right now that but I find I just can't. Yeah yeah, the whole family was probably part of Macal and whatever, shut up Wizard Barristers.

A man in charge

The whole Boston affair has apparently reminded Cecil that she's trying to get a retrial for her mother, so she goes to see Megumi and asks if there was "anything suspicious" about the trial that she can recall. I don't know Cecil, I think the fact that her Wizard Barrister didn't even bother putting up the pretense of defending her is pretty damn suspicious, but I'm not a legal genius like you. Anyway, Cecil -- who has sadly learned nothing about the art of investigation from Kamakiri several episodes back -- is just going to present herself to anyone that had something to do with the trial and demand that they tell her the truth. Because you know, powerful judges just love it when you get all in their face and suggest that their courtroom is totally rigged. It goes about as well for her as you might expect.

Meanwhile, all of Cecil's extra-curriculars leads to her being late at Butterfly Law, at which point Chouno (deservedly) chews her out. Hotaru, formerly of the Bitch Face, now Team Cecil's #1 Fan, isn't having that and defends Cecil. The pregnant pause while everyone realizes that Hotaru suddenly has feelings is kind of amusing.

Also meanwhile, we learn that Daddy Stabler is a super-duper-important judge, who appears to be trying to make the various anti-magic laws a little bit less draconian in practice. Ironically, his efforts there would probably be far more useful to the world's WUD population than whatever ridiculous scheme he's cooked up involving Cecil, but that's cult members for you; can't see the forest for the trees. Concurrently, Stabler Jr. is beginning to have serious second thoughts about using Cecil as part of their scheme. I knew he was going to end up looking at the charm she gave him and feel guilty about using her, but I didn't expect them to play it quite this straight. He even tries to throw the charm away, then can't bring himself to do it as he imagines Cecil's derpy face! That's like Sympathetic Antagonist 101 right there.

Speaking of Stablers big and small, we learn that Macal is going to make some kind of blood sacrifice to summon Lucifer, which seems really inefficient quite frankly. I know for a fact that Moyo, The Paralegal Who is Also Satan, can be reached without opening up any veins. Just pick up a phone, guys.

Daddy issues

"Hey Dad, is it too late to say that maybe I'm not cut out for this whole cult-leader lifestyle?"

"Yes. Now shut up and keep sacrificing virgins until I tell you to stop, boy."

Nana Genie, bless him, reminds Cecil that there're other ways of getting info than just asking the people involved directly, so Cecil gets the not-entirely-dumb idea of asking Stabler for help with her investigation. The whole thing segues strangely into a scenic boat ride, which becomes quasi-romantic when a minor collision plants Cecil right on top of her treacherous cop buddy. I don't even know what to make of this romantic tension between the two of them; Cecil's just so childish that she doesn't have chemistry with anyone. Stabler and Quinn though? Now there's a hentai OVA we would all watch (don't EVEN deny it, kids.)

all the romance there is not

Don't hit on Stabler, Cecil! Don't you know he belongs with Benson the redhead?

Finally, Stabler is done mooning over good luck charms and taking random boat rides and is ready to procure Cecil for Macal. He's unfortunate enough to run into his partner on the way out, who is tired of all his secretive nonsense. He manages to push past Quinn without any sort of explanation, which is honestly kind of surprising; I'd expect Quinn to use some judo or whatever to drop him to the floor and make him explain what's going on, but I guess if she did that, then the jig would be up and there would be no show. Later, Stabler is just about ready to grab Cecil (who thinks he's just giving her some court documents), when who should show up but the blond dude from Shark Knight! See, they were good guys all along-- except maybe for that creepy one, who uses mind control to make people strip, seriously fuck that guy.

Come with me, milady!

Stabler tries to get rid of Mr. Shark by using his powers to blast a fire extinguisher at him, but Cecil blocks his wimpy powers with her super-mega-powers; I don't know which of her 15 million powers she's using at this point, and is anyone keeping track? Doubtful. Then Cecil realizes that if Stabler has powers, that means he must be a wizard and gasp WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

After Mr. Shark and Cecil get some distance from Stabler -- although honestly, it's barely any distance at all and it looks like he should definitely be able to hear them talking, but whatever -- Shark guy starts explaining what's going on. He tells Cecil that six years ago, not only was she shot, but she actually died... which might have been a pretty shocking revelation if the show hadn't just told us that last episode. Stop trying to end more than one episode on the same cliffhanger, it never works.

So what comes next? I'm wondering if Cecil is some kind of Dracula-like figure where killing her only makes her stronger, or if perhaps her mother exchanged her soul to bring her back to life, making her some inhuman magical wellspring in the process. I will say, as predictable as this show has been in general, I really don't know what's going on with Cecil yet, and there's something to be said for that. I am mildly curious what the deal is there.

Last thing: I totally forgot to mention that somewhere in the middle of the episode, Ageha confronts Cecil and tries to get her to trust her fellow Butterfly Law peeps with her problems. Ageha claims that the Butterfly team is now Cecil's friends, and they're totally willing to go out on a limb to help her with whatever her messed up situation is. Speak for yourself, Ageha; I think Chouno is pretty much over little miss I'm-a-genius-but-I-can't-tell-time. I think he might even be tempted to fire her, but that would mean Chouno actually doing something, so of course it will never happen.

girl talk

"Cecil, you have to trust your fellow Butterflies! We're your friends."

"But Sasori wants to shove me into the nearest broom closet and grope me to death."

"There's different kinds of trust."

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Karen Mead
Karen MeadContributor   gamer profile

Hi, I'm a former newspaper journalist who got tired of having a front row seat to the death of print. There probably could be some interesting story there about a disenchanted reporter moving on ... more + disclosures



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