Episodic Thoughts: DanMachi – Episode 6

My thoughts on the sixth episode of Dungeon ni Deai wo Motomeru no wa Machigatteiru Darou ka.

So from the get-go it’s pretty obvious from the title that this episode would feature Arde’s back-story as well as her inevitable betrayal after her run in with the thugs last week. I liked this episode a good deal – starting with the flashback describing both the demise of Arde’s parents as well as her run-in with the ‘wrong crowd’ of adventurers. These two things gave rise to her present mindset and I think there is a good deal of validity to it.

Earlier we may have been troubled over the fact that Arde was willing to deceive Belle despite how nice he was to her all in order to pay off some vague dept with her guild. However given her history with adventurers – she did not act purely out of self-interest; Arde hated them and Belle alike which made it far easier for her to act and in my opinion – more believable. I was skeptical earlier when it was revealed she still wanted to steal the knife even after being caught the first time however I know think it was a natural decision and her eventual predicament this episode gives insight into how dire her situation was.

The betrayal itself was well-done enough. I liked the idea of the monster lures as a trap but I can’t help but think that Belle, even in his infinite ignorance or willingness to overlook things, that he should have at least been a little less trusting given all of her initial directions regarding the floor. After Arde herself runs into a trap she gets beaten up pretty viciously which, while painful to watch, I felt was necessary because the brutality of the presentation really emphasized the kind of people that she had been dealing with and the kind of thing that pushed her to do what she did.

On one hand we want to dislike her because of how she left Belle but we are immediately given a contradictory scene in that its hard not to feel sympathy for the character (especially on account of her back-story) when they are abused in such a way. Even her dialogue as the ants closed in on her, which was self-deprecating in the extreme, suggested that her own self-image had been tarnished both by the words of the adventurers and by the recognition of her own desperate actions. Frankly I’m just glad that we get a genuine smile out of her by the end of the episode and I imagine that her time with Belle henceforth will serve as a road to recovery for her.

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