Home > Episode Reviews, Gosick > Gosick Episode 15 – Signs and Portents

Gosick Episode 15 – Signs and Portents

Time to eat a little crow:

Thanks to an encounter with a talkative groundskeeper, Kujou learns of some African refugees who once settled in Saubure, hears a few ghost stories, and is taught about the plight of Protestants during the Reformation, centuries prior—and I doubt all these factors will be utilized with the current plotline.

Of course, they all are  utilized with the current mystery, making a random encounter with a groundskeeper the key to unlocking the Leviathan myth down to the last detail. There’s something to be said for economizing scenes, but can’t the writers even introduce a red herring or too?

Well, whatever. Not like I’m watching Gosick for the mysteries anyway.

Musgrave's plotting led to Leviathan's downfall at court. In rage Leviathan killed Musgrave's son, which sealed his fate

What I am watching Gosick for is the story of Victorique and Kujou, and that continues to build on itself and on the episodic crime solving. Although Leviathan died over a decade before Victorique was born, and the two lived in opposite towers, each was regarded as a monster whom powerful figures inside Saubure alternatively worked with and despised, but only as tools for greater ends.

Leviathan tolerated this—in fact, pretended to be an alchemist in order to become this—to gain influence at court and protect what was important to him. Victorique, having been born into the role, is far more ambivalent about her standing.

Leviathan's hidden stash of gold gave him the ability to fake his alchemy. When he dragged his mortally wounded body inside and sealed himself in, he cemented his reputation for being immortal

Connecting them both is Albert de Blois, Victorique’s father, who apparently predicted (or had access to prophecies about) both World Wars. He tried to use Leviathan’s alchemy to support Saubure in World War I; for World War II, he has raised his own Gray Wolf.

Of course, Leviathan’s alchemy was faked; prophecy is the only supernatural occurrence that seems to exist in Gosick’s setting. (Leviathan, despite being a fake, managed to advise Albert to sire Victorique; I’ve no idea where he even got the idea.) I’m not certain how Victorique’s genius is supposed to help during World War II, but what is clear is that everyone, from Albert to Grevil to even Brian Roscoe, views the Gray Wolves not as an ethnicity, but as beings set apart from the normal run of humanity.

Albert claims to want the powers of Alchemy to protect the country. But he seems driven to acquire power for power's sake

Roscoe comes across as an even more unpleasant character in this episode than he has previously, and whatever support he’s given to Cordelia seems purely out of his own interest. His hatred for the de Blois family is evident, however; whether because of his long term goals or just because of their trifling with Gray Wolves in the first place, Albert has Roscoe’s enmity and Victorique, as Albert’s tool, shares in that. Roscoe hints that his own connections to the Gray Wolves might be biological, but he treats the Wolves themselves (particularly Victorique) as things rather than people.

All this makes Kujou far more interesting. He’s the only person besides Cecile who has ever treated Victorique like a human being, and unlike Cecile actually seems to have broken through Victorique’s shell. Despite everyone’s continued assertions to the contrary, he’s proven that Gray Wolves can love and be loved. Specifically, he’s proven that a Gray Wolf can come to love him.

We now know that Roscoe helped Cordelia escape, but it's not clear why he hasn't simply claimed Victorique for himself as well. He's had at least a couple golden opportunities by now

This only makes their prophesied separation much more tragic. This episode returns to those hints and builds further, implying that the cause of their separation will be World War II. On the bright side, that could give them as much as a decade still together; as a downer, they will likely be working for opposite sides, and it wouldn’t surprise me if one of Victorique’s plans leads to the death of Kujou the soldier.

So it seems as much as I complain about the mysteries failing to foreshadow or lay subtle hints for future puzzles, in fact they do: just for Victorique and Kujou’s relationship and Victorique’s larger role in the metaplot, and not for the some future mystery. The crimes (and criminals thus far have all had some connection, direct or metaphorical, to Victorique and her situation. Now it becomes clear that several of them have had broader implications for the world of Gosick as a whole.

Victorique finds her triumphant unmasking of Leviathan is hindered by a minor practical problem. Her reaction to Kujou's aid takes a funny moment and makes it heartwarming

Does that make the mysteries themselves more engaging? Given I’ve only brought up the tale of Leviathan in a few scattered photo captions, you can probably figure that out for yourself. But, as I’ve said before and will no doubt have cause to say again, the only real reason to watch Gosick is for Victorique and Kujou, as they try to find their way together in opposition to their families, their countries, and their own conflicted feelings. And that, for me, is reason enough.

You can watch the episode here.

Grevil and Victorique's final conversation, while not as hostile as their previous encounters, is still ominous. Her time with Kujou may soon be coming to an end

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