The Black Blood Resonance Battle! – A Small Soul's Grand Struggle against Fear?
Koketsu no Kyōmei Sen! 〜Kyōfu ni Hamukau Chiisana Tamashii no Taifuntō?
Japan: August 18, 2008
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|Empowered by Black Blood, Crona proves difficult for Maka Albarn to defeat. With their survival on the line, Maka and Soul Eater push themselves to the brink of madness.|
Death City Underground
Continuing from earlier, Black☆Star again tells Maka Albarn to face Crona alone, promising to save "her sorry butt" should she prove too weak against Crona. Soul Eater excitedly tells Maka to prepare for this fight, while Black☆Star has Tsubaki Nakatsukasa initiate Speed☆Star, allowing him to pass Crona with no problems. Crona prepares to attack Black☆Star's back, but Maka blocks with Soul's blade then performing a high-impact punch into Crona so that their body will be damaged despite the strength of the Black Blood.
Maka then uses Scythe Catch, the blade of Soul keeping Crona from tearing away from Maka, followed by multiple punches to Crona's face and torso. But Maka feels the heaviness of Crona's body, thinking it is like punching lead.
Ragnarok shouts to Crona to focus not on the escaping Black☆Star but on defending against Maka. Maka holds onto Soul's staff to give her a moment to leap and with both legs kick Crona in the face, knocking back the Demon Sword meister while the force of her kick allows Maka to stay in the air long enough to land on both feet. On the floor, Crona cannot determine how to proceed against someone like Maka who, despite her seeming weakness, is defeating them. Ragnarok gives Crona an order that causes a mad grin to form on their face: "Kill her."
Soul advises his meister as well, demanding that she tell him that they have a chance of winning this fight. Maka answers: "Nope, not really." Soul sweats nervously before he breaks up laughing, complimenting her, in his own way, that she is so smart yet so dumb, and that her willingness to fight with no chance of winning makes her the best meister he could have. Based on how Maka usually handles situations, Soul thinks she will find a way to win anyway.
Ragnarok interrupts Soul's pep talk to remind Maka that Crona almost killed her and Soul before, and that Black☆Star would have been a more appetizing opponent to consume than Maka. To Ragnarok's confusion, Maka says one word: "Hooray." She is pleased that Ragnarok sees who she really is: before, Ragnarok saw her only as food, whereas now he sees her as an opponent and hence a person.
Maka's sardonic grin disappears as she expresses annoyance at Crona's perpetual fearfulness, as she demands they face her. Crona tells Maka to leave them alone, as Maka is already so weak that she will be injured should she move forward with this battle. Maka's smile returns, as Crona blushes in confusion at Maka's determined stare. Maka admits she is weaker yet knows her stronger soul likely means she will win. This response causes Crona to frown and finally face Maka. Ragnarok transforms, telling Maka to prattle as she wishes because no one is near enough to hear her screams when she will die in this battle.
But Maka still presses Crona, seeing that their frown means she has finally ticked them off. Maka introduces herself by name, demanding Crona's name so that her fight challenge moves forward. Crona and Maka then expand their soul wavelength, each with energy forming what appear like wings, Maka's angelic and Crona's dragonlike, ready for the real fight to begin.
Elsewhere underground, Spirit Albarn senses Maka and Crona's wavelengths, and Franken Stein confirms to him that Spirit's daughter has ignored Stein's instructions and is facing Medusa's child alone. The Vector Plates still encircle Medusa and Stein, each one ready to move to allow Medusa to attack Stein directly. While Medusa mocks Spirit's daughter as weak, the father tells the witch not to underestimate Maka.
Meanwhile, Soul asks why Maka is letting Crona stand there without attacking them. Maka goads Crona to act, prompting them to slice their own wrist with Ragnarok, the Black Blood emerging from the wound as Bloody Slicer, forming a boomerang-shaped projectile with Ragnarok's eye upon it. Maka dodges Bloody Slicer, but in that time Crona has moved forward to slice at Maka. Maka blocks Ragnarok with Soul's staff—but Ragnarok dissolves around Soul's staff into Black Blood, dripping onto the floor. Crona then commands that puddle of Black Blood to form Bloody Needle, spikes shooting upward at Maka. Maka leaps and uses Soul's staff as balance so she may flipped backwards and dodge the needles.
Maka slides back to create distance, but Crona begins Scream Resonance. Frustrated at Crona's attack, Maka demands to know why Crona is collecting innocent souls and resurrecting the Kishin. Crona explains that they are afraid, so it is by interacting with others that Crona can overcome fear. As for why they are resurrecting the Kishin, Crona says Medusa will abandon them unless Crona becomes a Kishin. Without becoming stronger, Crona concludes, they will always be afraid. Now that their Scream Resonance has climaxed, Crona and Ragnarok release Scream Alpha, the attack ripping through the floor in a straight line for Maka. But Maka does not dodge: she stands before the attack, saying that regardless how weak or afraid she is, she will face whatever attack Crona has. Maka blocks Scream Alpha with Soul, and even as the attack thrusts her back, she screams out Crona's name. But in the attack, Scream Alpha causes an explosion around Maka.
Elsewhere, Stein and Medusa continue to face each other, neither opponent engaging the other. Stein asks from where Medusa abducted Crona. Stein assumes that Medusa was trying to make Crona into a Kishin and in failing to do so now decides to resurrect Asura himself. Therefore, Medusa likely has no need for Crona, so Stein is curious what she will do with the child. Stein at least is pleased at these circumstances, but he is confused by Medusa is laughing. Medusa explains that her goal has not been only to revive the Kishin: as her primary goal has been to research the Black Blood, even these supposedly failed experiments help her to perfect that Black Blood. She also explains that Crona is not abducted: Crona is indeed Medusa's own child.
Meanwhile, Crona stands, waiting for the smoke to clear to determine whether Maka is no longer a threat. But Maka slams Soul's staff down to help herself back up. She runs towards Crona and swings Soul at them, but Crona, with a bare hand, blocks Soul's blade. As more Black Blood emerges from this new wound on their hand, Crona again asks why Maka persists when she is so weak. With that hand wound's blood, Crona produces another Bloody Needle to stab at Maka. Maka dodges and leaps back, as Soul explains that creating more wounds will leave him and Maka at a disadvantage. Maka and Soul then realize that they have one more attack to try: as they resonate their souls, they form Witch Hunter. Crona responds with Scream Resonance again as Soul tells Maka to increase their resonance as well.
Stein can sense the increased resonances of both Maka and Crona's pairs, while Medusa can sense that the Black Blood is becoming unleashed in Ragnarok and Soul, drawing both weapons into Madness. The Little Ogre grins. Maka prepares Witch Hunter while Crona prepares Screech Gamma. Spirit asks Stein to explain what is happening, who answers that the Black Blood is being activated.
Maka leaps and attacks with Figure-6 Hunter, which cannot penetrate Crona's Screech Gamma, so Maka attacks with Letter-U Hunter, knocking Crona back and tearing up the floor. But Crona blocks the attack with one arm. Wearing a mad grin, Crona asks whether these attacks are the best Maka can summon. With one strike, Crona knocks Maka back. While Soul is surprised that someone as lanky as Crona has such physical strength, Maka corrects him that it is the Black Blood of Ragnarok within Crona that strengthens them.
Crona runs towards Maka to attack with Screech Gamma, but as they swing Ragnarok at Maka, who blocks with her scythe, Crona repeatedly screams, "Stop!" and demands Maka stop making them cut Soul. Ragnarok's Screech Gamma wraps around Soul, as Maka can sense her weapon's pain. Angered, Soul demands Maka keep using him to block the attacks, yet she is fearful that Crona's attacks will kill him. Soul demands that Maka stop "talking crap," yet the Little Ogre smiles and accuses Soul of doing the same: he must accept the power of the Black Blood and its madness to win this fight.
Crona knocks Maka back but does not pursue her, as the meister sits and catches her breath. After confirming Soul is okay, Maka considers how she almost accessed something about Crona's wavelength, but without more time, she cannot understand.
Maka's thoughts are interrupted as Crona approaches and knocks the meister back with a swing of Ragnarok. Maka leans upon Soul as she struggles to stay upright, but as she cannot catch her breath, she cannot move as Crona approaches to behead her. "Are you afraid?" Crona asks, then remarks that Maka resembles "the little one," a small, winged fire-breathing dragon and hence someone else with which Crona did not know how to relate.
Medusa's Lair (The Past)
Crona remembers how, as a toddler, they were kept in a checkerboard tiled room with white walls. Here, Medusa ordered them to kill the Little One. When Crona refused, Medusa locked Crona in a lightless room, leaving them to be beaten by a smaller version of Ragnarok emerging from their body. Despite Crona's apologies, Ragnarok continued to beat them.
Later, Medusa opened the door, allowing light back into the room, revealing Crona, bruised from Ragnarok's attacks. Crona rushed to their mother, asking Medusa to stop Ragnarok from beating them. Crona exits with Medusa, the mother demanding the child kill the Little One. Crona hesitates, still uncertain how to hurt others. Medusa stops walking, and Crona tenses in fear. With little emotion in her voice, Medusa simply conjures Vector Plate to knock Crona away, their body tumbling back into the dark room which Medusa again locks. Ragnarok emerges again and continues his assault against Crona.
Much later, Medusa opens the door again, demanding to know how many more times she will be forced to punish her child like this until they cooperate. Crona initially keeps their head down, but upon lifting it, they reveal a mad smile and, in a steady voice, announces that their blood is black. A smile comes to Medusa's face. She stands aside to let Crona march from the room towards the Little One. Although the dragon fires a flame at Crona, the child does not flinch, the mad smile persisting as Ragnarok emerges, wearing a similar grin. A sound of Ragnarok's sword form slicing through the dragon is heard.
Death City Underground (The Present)
Wearing that same mad grin from their childhood, Crona again lifts Ragnarok and wishes good bye to "the little one," Maka.
The Little Ogre demands Soul act or else see himself and his meister die. Soul refuses to give up his sanity for power, demanding just the Ogre's power itself. The Ogre challenges Soul to realize that discipline will not bring him power, but Soul counters that discipline and facing fear are powers as well. Furthermore, if Soul increases his resonance rate any higher, he risks pulling Maka into madness as well.
The Ogre turns, his smile replaced with a frown as he screams at Soul to demonstrate some "teen spirit" to embrace madness and live. Soul screams as loudly, referring to the Ogre as nothing more defecation, which should not speak. Soul concludes that if the Ogre wants to do something, than he should take the lead and expect Soul to follow. The Ogre is shocked at Soul's outrage, determining that they are at an impasse and that a third party may allow this debate to move forward. Hence he has invited someone, whom he order to draw back the curtain to reveal herself. Soul is shocked to see, wearing a black dress, Maka.
After Maka explains that she has overheard most of this conversation, Soul approaches, doubting that Maka could enter his own brain like this. The Ogre explains that the resonance between meister and weapon allows not only souls but minds to link, but Soul does not believe the Ogre: he tugs at Maka's face to prove she is an illusion. The Ogre admits his powers are not enough to conjure such an illusion so easily, as Soul is in control of his own mind right now. To prove the Ogre's point, Maka removes a book and Maka Chops Soul, which convinces the weapon. Now that this point has been proven, the Ogre strolls towards the record player to put on some music, as he sets the needle to his record player.
Maka takes Soul's hands so the two may dance, asking him to take the lead as she is unfamiliar with how to dance, but Soul tells her to do whatever. The Ogre snaps his fingers to start the music. Soul asks how Maka arrived, as she thinks she may have first heard the Ogre's voice when he first entered her, during the fight against Free in London. The Ogre then mentions he is confused how it was that his presence was expelled from Maka's body, prompting her to study the Ogre for a moment.
Upon hearing the Ogre's remarks, Soul warns Maka to leave now, as he has no idea whether she will be as lucky to remove the Ogre from herself next time. Maka interrupt to mention that, as the two are resonating so closely for her to be inside his mind, then Soul likely can read her mind, too, so he should know now how she has planned to defeat Crona. Soul stops dancing: he realizes Maka is considering using the Black Blood to give herself madness, prompting the Ogre to grin and Maka to think that Soul is angry at her. But when Maka used Witch Hunter, she sensed something about Crona, and with more strength from the Black Blood, Maka could resonate with Crona's own wavelength.
Soul is afraid Maka will become as mad as Crona, but his meister begins their dance again because she has decided on her own to proceed with her plan to use the Black Blood. She then adds that it is worth trying the plan. Soul smiles sadly and acquiesces, promising to pull her back from madness no matter what. Then he cringes because Maka's poor dancing skills planted her heel atop his foot. Maka blushes, asking that Soul take the lead again.
The Ogre announces that this is more like it.
Death City Underground
Crona has not yet swung Ragnarok: all that transpired in the Black Room happened in mere seconds. But Crona does swing, the blade coming closer to behead Maka. But Maka blocks Ragnarok with just her forearm, much as Crona blocked Soul's attack, but no cut comes through Maka's skin, let alone her jacket. Crona stares in shock as Maka lifts her head and reveals a mad grin. One swing of Soul knocks Crona into the ceiling, causing them and the ceiling to fall down. Maka plants Soul's blade into the floor, the eye on his weapon form dilated as if he too is under the power of madness. Maka stands along his staff and cackles at how far Crona sailed through the air.
Inside his weapon, Soul feels himself pulled into madness, his face bloodied. He promises to pull her back, but the Ogre disagrees with the "fool," announcing that it is he who is now leading.
Manga and Anime Differences
- In Chapter 17, when Soul asks whether they have any chance of defeating Crona, Maka initially says yes, but then immediately corrects herself that no, they have no chance. In this episode, however, Maka immediately says no.
- Chapter 17 included the portion of Stein's use of Soul Thread Sutures on Medusa. This content was adapted as part of Episode 19 rather than taking place after Maka's fight with Crona.
- In Chapter 18, the flashback to Crona's childhood shows that they killed a rabbit. In this episode, the Little One is actually a dragon.
- As well, whereas Chapter 18 showed Crona therefore imagining the pigtailed Maka as resembling the rabbit, in this episode, Crona at no point sees Maka with such a resemblance.
- In this episode, Maka says the plan to use the Black Blood is worth trying, but in Chapter 18 she says that the plan would be "cool," as she borrows Soul's usual lexicon.
- Medusa confirms to Stein in this episode that she identifies herself as Crona's mother and that she did not abduct the child.
- The Little Ogre demands Soul demonstrate some "teen spirit," potentially an allusion to the 1991 song "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by the grunge band Nirvana, yet another one of Atsushi Ōkubo's allusions to popular music in his manga.
- In the teaser for the next episode, Maka cannot determine where she is in the darkness, as the Little Ogre tells her it is merely nighttime and she should figure out her location on her own. But before Maka can say she is inside Crona's soul, the Ogre talks over her to avoid giving away, as he says, "spoilers." When Maka expresses confusion, the Ogre gives an example of a spoiler, such as how in the next episode Maka will turn into a child—hence the Ogre has now spoiled the next episode. At that moment, Maka's voice changes into that of her child form as she promises, "I will take your soul, Mister!"
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