Level E 13 – Making Chump Meat Out of the Maestro (END)

Holy crap, I think I’m in love!

So, even though I think I enjoyed the final run of episodes more than some other people, I think we can for the most part agree that the second half of Level E isn’t quite as good as the first half — it lost a bit of steam, and the comedy didn’t have quite the same bite to it. But I’d say this final episode is a worthy conclusion that captures the same sense of unpredictable fun that made Level E so good from the start.

Also, this episode totally made me feel like Kraft while watching it. I sat on my bed, nodding my head, thinking to myself, “Yeah, I totally saw through the deception; I know Baka is going to handle this,” and then the extra layers of deception revealed themselves, and I was metaphorically punched out by a Disckonian. It’s the sort of thing one should see coming at this point in Level E (especially since deceptive storytelling is the show’s MO), but I fell for the obvious bait and let that cloud my mind to the point where the trap slipped by and sprung itself on me at the optimal moment. Always love when a story is able to do that, especially since I think smart audiences are constantly on their guard these days.

But, yes, I was cheering during the moment when Baka slipped on the other ring and vowed to marry the thief because being both a king and a revolutionary would be awesome. I thought for a moment that Baka would slip the ring on his “brother’s” finger to avoid the responsibility of being a king, but I suppose the allure of such a rogueish title was just too much for Baka to turn down. And then . . . the extra twist, and suddenly Princess Shokotan Luna becomes a million times more awesome. It makes sense, too: Baka spurred her on in becoming more well read and in better grasping math and science, so why too wouldn’t she work to outdo him in the ways of the trickster, as well?

Baka found himself a total keeper . . .

By the way, once again, I love how every little detail introduced in each episode makes me obsess over it and wonder how it will fit into the plot. Like, the grasshopper, I totally thought that was another bug (as in a listening device or camera or whatever) that Kraft and Sade were overlooking, but no, they use its secretions to break out of their handcuffs. (I love Sade’s bullshit line about nobody researching that “secretions from insects on Earth can erode metal” lol.) I bet that’s the last thing that poor grasshopper thought he or she would be doing that day.

Speaking of details being Just As Planned, I thought the coda showing Princess Luna setting up the cat for Baka to use as a camera was kind of sweet (and sort of creepy in a stalkerish sort of way). Even Baka’s precious feline camera was used against him from the beginning. That was like a checkmate right from the start, wasn’ t it? Baka never saw it coming. I think this is what happens when guys forget anniversaries and such.

This look on Yukitaka’s face made me laugh so much . . .

So, yeah, a good finale for a good comedy. Even if it lost steam near the end, Level E made me laugh consistently, which is much more than I can say for a lot of anime comedies. And I like that the show goes out of its to come up with interesting stories and plot devices, even if they don’t always work. I’d much rather see a good science-fiction comedy than Slice of Life School Comedy Anime No. 9001.

Also, I promised Chronolynx a shot of a shirtless Mohan, so here you are, buddy! Enjoy!

13 Responses to “Level E 13 – Making Chump Meat Out of the Maestro (END)”

  1. Much more humour than science fiction :v

    Dayum though, I think the author started serializing the manga, and eventually ran out of good ideas (except the end, which he probably had in mind since the beginning) and quit during the 13th chapter. It does show, though, how much more quality a shorter manga can have – longer stories, though typically more fancy and grandiose, also lack creativity, because nobody can /be/ that creative.

    Now is that the real or the fake Mohan?

    • Well, soft science-fiction, which is more like fantasy, I guess.

      And, yeah, I think the author probably did start running out of ideas at some point, which is why it’s good he knew when to stop. Unless he was forced to stop lol.

      That is the real Mohan, since the fake Mohan was in the cell at the time. :)

      • A lot of times “science fiction” does slide into “fantasy”, but there was a strong science fiction vibe to it. Even in the detail you mentioned, the grasshopper. there was a scientific rationalization. Similarly, with the very interesting take on mermaids. I mean compared to something like Tenchi Muyo or any number of shows that aired recently.

  2. Mad Chemist Says:

    Yeah, I was also happy with the way this show ended. It’s been a really fun ride, and even though things dipped in humor for a bit I think the anthology feel really kept the humor and storytelling from getting stale. You never really knew what you were getting with Level E.

    Great episode, too. I too was trolled just as hard as Baka, and Kraft being angry pretty much the whole episode was a huge plus.

    • I didn’t really think about it before, but you and Landon of Mecha-Guignol both pointed out the “anthology” feel to Level E, and you’re definitely on the mark there. It did feel sort of like a tongue-in-cheek Twilight Zone or Outer Limits or whatever.

  3. Mohan~ <3

    Anyway. I'm not sure I'd go so far as to say the second half was inferior; it was just different, which I prefer to more of the same. For example I think episode 10 is probably my favorite, because it is that ever elusive "good filler." Which meanwhile manages to tell its story 10x better than most "serious" shows out there. Bravo.

    Back to this episode, though; the climax was indeed unexpected. I thought something was a bit off when the Prince came up with his plan, but I couldn't see through what was happening. So, yeah, it's so refreshing for a show to pull of so many twist endings that don't feel like they're pulled out of the writer's ass. A great end to a great show. You will be missed, Level E.

    • While I didn’t like the second half quite as much as the first, I do appreciate Level E going out on a limb and going for different types of stories. Personally, I don’t think the show lost quite as much steam as other people seem to believe, but eh.

  4. BAKAOUJI WA DAMASARETANDA~

    And I realize that I REALLY love how Koyasu voiced Kraft. think some the great characterization came from the cast?

  5. Matt Wells Says:

    My one regret is that they didn’t animate the manga epilogue. It has Baka Ouji and his bride outwit an entire team of intergalactic mercenaries/assasins doing nothing but smiling and waving. It also shows their young daughter to be every bit as capable at devious deception as her parents. I suggest you seek it out if you haven’t already; the original manga was a bit better paced than the anime, in my own opinion.

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