draggle: One of the major ways in which the world of Queen’s Blade differs from our own is that pants do not appear to have been invented yet. All of the female characters (human or otherwise) wear either dresses, short skirts, or undergarments alone. As a study in cultural anthropology, this lack of pants leads to many interesting cultural differences, including the apparent lack of shame at having one’s undergarments exposed.
More unexpectedly, the religion of Queen’s Blade centers around this lack of pants as a focal point for prayer. To achieve communion with the divine, worshipers lift their skirts and present themselves to god. Without further details, we can only speculate as to the origins of these practices. Did the religion of Queen’s Blade develop due to a lack of pants?
I have a different hypothesis: the religion of Queen’s Blade developed as a reaction to pants. Much like the Israelites wandering in the wilderness of Canaan were forbidden from worshipping idols after they repeatedly tried to do so, the religion of Queen’s Blade actively forbade pants as blasphemous and idolatrous after women, possessed by demons, began to wear them. Clearly, the god of Queen’s Blade is a pervert. There will be no virgin birth in this world.
John Sato: I really have to agree with Draggle here. As we can see from the occasionally sprinkled in male characters, pants do exist, but aren’t worn by women. This has been a long-standing tradition in Queen’s Blade. Not one female character in the entire series, be it the first season, second season, or any of the multiple OVAs, has ever worn pants. It’s a religious practice that has been in place since well before the beginning of the series. However, while confirming this, I noticed something seemingly minor, which soon became the key to understanding all of what is happening in Queen’s Blade Rebellion.
In the original series, I believe there was a total of one male character who spoke scripted lines in a dialogue, this character being a perverted elderly man who attempts to swindle the protagonist of that series out of her money. In Rebellion, this trend has clearly continued; there have only been two reoccurring male characters so far, them being a discontent newspaper boy and a swindling gambler. I believe this lack of positive traits in male QB characters is a direct result of the gender being bitter about the fate attributed to them (this fate being the fiery death Draggle mentioned in the previous colloquium).
That, however, is a mere aside to the major point here. Compared to the original series, Rebellion has significantly more males in it (I assume in the first series the female population either rightly culled males, or hid them away from the public eye). As the series has shown us, males are inherently unholy creatures. They are unable to partake in the worship of god and wear pants (a mark of the unclean) shamelessly.
Add this together with the other things we have since learned about Queen’s Blade. In the first colloquium, we explored the deep symbolism presented in the show and how it revealed the sexual deviancy (or in Annelotte’s case, deception) that was entering the world. Though only by a small mountain tribe, somewhere in the world of Queen’s Blade, what was thought to be a man was going to be allowed to have intercourse with a holy woman. Yes, a man (who later turned out to be Annelotte) and a holy woman. As if such blasphemy were not enough, we can see from the other colloquium that armor emphasizing a different form of worship, if not that of an entirely different god, was developed by order of the queen.
Putting all of this together, we have a) an influx of unholy creatures (men), b) the intent to commit the unthinkable through the bonding between a holy female and one of these unclean creatures, and c) an armor that stands in either direct opposition to god, or at least suggests a deviancy in his worship. As one can see, there is a clear contrast between the level of religious commitment in the world between the first two series and Rebellion. What caused this? Well, the only major change to the world between the previous series and this one stems from the current queen, Claudette. Let’s take everything we know about Claudette for a moment here. She is the one who killed Annelotte’s aristocratic family, causing Annelotte to begin her journey of vengeance (which in turn led the androgynous warrior to the mountain tribe’s village, causing the crisis with the unholy bonding ritual. Claudette also put a stop to the Queen’s Blade tournament, which was an institution set up by god himself. The armor was invented by one of Claudette retainers, and she allowed its use. It can even be inferred that she is behind the rapid increase of males in the world. Thus, Claudette is behind all of the religious crises going on in the world.
This totally changes the plot, and the nature of Annelotte’s quest for vengeance. With this knowledge, Annelotte is not just a mere exiled aristocrat, but a holy man-woman chosen by god to strike down the heretical queen. She is a being that transcends all logic in Queen’s Blade. Annelotte is a woman, but is constantly mistaken for being an unclean male. Indeed, she even embraces this image, as it helps her move unnoticed by the queen’s guards. However, as revealed in the recent episodes, she has another, darker, more powerful self. One can only assume that God has granted Annelotte the powers to overcome the heretic without her knowing. He gave her the disguise of a male so that she might better hide from her pursuers. He additionally gave her powers without her knowledge, so that she might only use them when necessary. It is clear that this is the purpose of these powers, as their first use in the show is to destroy the religiously ambiguous vibration armor that I mentioned above. As for why god chose Annelotte as his vessel of judgment, I believe it lies in her dichotomous nature. Who could be more fitting for defeating the heretic queen than a being that walks the line between male and female, unclean and holy?
I really appreciate the way this series continually builds upon itself and lends itself to such deep analysis through the smallest details. Though at first a seemingly small detail, it was the pants (or in the case of the female characters, the lack of pants) that led me to this stunning conclusion. In fact, I believe that pants are an important plot device. The clock is ticking for Annelotte now, because if past events are any indication, Claudette will attempt the unthinkable; forcing a female to wear pants. The tension from the story comes from this. Will Annelotte be able to stop the queen before a female is forced to wear pants, or will the world be forever tainted? It’s questions like these that have me coming back for more every two weeks.
Reiseng: Unlike my comrades, I have not seen the previous episodes of Queen’s Blade Rebellion. I jumped into episode 7 regardless of my lack of experience because I had been told that while Queen’s Blade masterfully builds upon each previous episode, each individual episode is good enough to stand on its own. My comrades were right. This episode was great.
I watched Queen’s Blade on a typical, disgusting anime streaming site. Even my NoScript + Addblock combo could do little to hide the malicious nature of the site. The site’s moe background helped a bit, but that to was nothing more than an illusion, carefully crafted by villainous designers and their greed for advertisement revenue.
Why would I talk about anime streaming sites in a post on Queen’s Blade? I brought up the evil that is anime streaming because Queen’s Blade nullified that evil. It did not matter how evil the advertisements were, how ugly the site design was, Queen’s Blade saved me from it all. Neither the pixilated picture quality nor the flaky sound could stop Queen’s Blade from bursting on my screen and ridding my world of all evil.
Like a loving MILF, Queen’s Blade embraced me in her large, ever giving bosom and protected me from all my worries and unhealthy fears. This did not happen because Queen’s Blade was so good it distracted me (it was really good though), it happened because Queen’s Blade was so pure, so full of innocence; my heart could not help but be cleansed.
Take the dark skinned girl and her ritualistic dance for example. Her movement, her appearance, everything about her, represents purity. The moon, with its pure white surface, has always been a symbolic representation of untainted, pure individuals. By dancing with the moon, she served as a median, a vassal for the moon’s purity. In order to serve as a median, she had to have been pure in the first place.
A pure object can only make contact with another pure object. Had the girl not been pure, the moon would have ended up tainted, damaged and ugly like our real moon. Like the anime’s purification of my screen, the girls channeling of the moon’s purity combined with her own pure, bodily fluids, healed the ground and took away the taint that had been left on it by men.
Speaking of men, men are impure and tainted beings. Queen’s Blade’s focus on women is a clear indication of this. The only men shown in this episode were children (who are naturally innocent and pure), old men (who have learnt the errors of their ways) and dead men (who have been purified by the Earth).
Since children are innocent and pure, it can be assumed that the male genitals, while belonging to otherwise impure beings, are in fact pure entities. Queen’s Blade demonstrated this by having a phallic like growth in the middle of the dark skinned girl’s thighs. Her channeling of the moons purity, the excrement of her own fluids and the phallic growth made her an incredibly pure character and a character we can all look up to.
While most of the female characters in Queen’s Blade (that I have seen) seem to represent purity in one form or another, of particular interest to this discussion is the brave, blue haired knight and of particular importance to this discussion is her bath tub scene.
By scrubbing the pirate girl, the knight scrubbed away the microscopic impurities that had begun to collect on the pirate’s otherwise pure body. By opting to use her hands and not a brush, the knight ensured minimal contamination by impure elements and guaranteed maximum transfer of purity.
So, why did the knight hide her voice and run when she was exposed? She did so because being pure implies selflessness. There is no meaning to a pure action that gets discovered by others, for that leads to admiration and desire.
In Queen’s Blade, the characters with the greatest desire are the loli’s. These loli characters desire the knight and this desire is shown to be impure via the size of their bosoms. The purest of characters are blessed with breasts of great size. The breasts represent the purity that is within.
As strange as it might seem, even the Chinese lady with the large bosom is pure. She chose to escape the pirate ship in order to not induce unneeded, impure desire in the crew. Unfortunately, she too gave into desire for the knight by the end and subsequently tainted her purity.
Perhaps, that is the message that Queen’s Blade is going for. That, no matter how hard we try to keep our purity, we can’t help but get tainted now and then. All we can do is hope that a knight either scrubs the impurities off of our naked backs or a dancer fills us with her bodily fluids.
redball: I think I like where my compatriots have gone with this line of thought. I’ve been toying with similar theories about Queen’s Blade for a while now. I think that John’s points regarding pants have merit, and we can examine the universe from a historical perspective to flesh out the theory.
I’ll start with a probable shared history between the Queen’s Blade universe and our own. The concept of religion dates back to the paleolithic era. 30,000 years ago our ancestors traveled in packs and began to form concepts that shaped today’s culture. However, when religious concepts were first formed they did not resemble today’s religion at all. Humans were nomadic and fertility was highly important as infant mortality was incredibly high compared to modern society.
Thus, when these first religious beliefs were formed they typically focused on fertility, and many were maternal in nature. In fact, women in these tribes were considered either of equal ranking or superior to men. It was not until the agricultural age that we began to drift toward a paternalistic society and view of religion. I believe this is where the shared past with Queen’s Blade ends.
Instead, Queen’s Blade dares to present a universe where paternalism never took hold. The religion within the show has many modern elements, but the ceremonies and rituals all focus on the fertility and holiness of the female.
Perhaps the ultimate example of this comes when the Moon Dancer performs her dance to fertilize the crops, as described by Reiseng. We are presented with her tentacles transformed into an ovarian structure. She uses this structure to receive life-giving mana from the moon’s rays. This ritual is able to fertilize an entire field of various fruits and vegetables in a single night. This matches with the historic profile of fertility worship in which human and plant fertility was symbolically linked, only in the Queen’s Blade universe magic is able to directly link the two.
While men may be present in the show, they are certainly missing from the religious celebrations. Likewise our historic viewpoint notes that while fertility was the primary religious focus that men held considerably less power in society. They are needed in the fertilization process, but their role is significantly less involved (unless they are seahorses).
Now we can revisit the issue of pants. In a society concerned primarily with fertility and the worship thereof, it makes sense that pants would be eschewed. After all, pants get in the way of both the sexual act of fertilizing the egg, and the worship of the sacred bearer of fertility.