Now we’re getting to the part where everyone dies tragically. Whoo hoo!
Much like in Gen Urobochi’s other recent work, Madoka, a major theme seems to be the characters having the misfortune of receiving exactly what they wished for. In the future, Ilya will come to the country as Irisviel wishes. But it will be to fight in the war.
Kariya wished that he could fight so he could save Sakura. Now he’s fighting with Sakura’s stolen life force.
Then there’s Maiya. She wanted to fight for Kiritsugu, and thought the world would have no use for a soldier like her after Kiritsugu won the war. Her wish to fight for Kiritsugu and her expectation not to survive were both fulfilled.
An Empty Vessel
Irisviel’s wish is likewise self-defeating. She wants Kiritsugu to win mainly so that Ilya won’t have to fight, but also because Kiritsugu’s love makes her feel like more than a homunculus, not simply an empty vessel for the grail.
But it’s her very wish which makes her seem inhuman and empty. She doesn’t even understand what Kiritsugu is fighting for. She simply believes in what he says.
I have my doubts as to whether the person who came and kidnapped Irisviel was actually Rider. It seems completely the opposite of how he and Waver would operate. It seems more in Rider’s style to simply ride up in his chariot and challenge Saber to a battle. But kidnapping Irisviel, and killing Maiya? That doesn’t seem like something he (and much less Waver) would even consider. Particularly if he wants to show Saber the right path, this doesn’t seem to be the right way to go about it.
So I’m guessing this is being set up by Gilgamesh somehow. (no spoilers, please) Why would Rider be jumping around when he has his flying chariot, anyway? If it is Rider, I’m really curious to figure out what his thought process is.