RWBY Review: V4E2- Remembrance

Hello and Welcome to the RWBY review. Today, we will be looking at the second episode of season 4, “Remembrance”.

Not much to talk about on an animation perspective (though I think animators can say otherwise). I found that the facial expressions to be a major improvement with their correspondence to emotion to be strong. Another point of note was the animation for the butler, Klain; he has some sort of multiple personality disorder and they did go through the effort of adding affectations to his movements for each one which is a nice touch.

In terms of story, they seem to be doing twofold this episode. The first is scenes with Weiss to establish her home life. It’s generic with a younger brother that seems to have some deeper resentment for Weiss and Winter and an demanding father that controls Weiss but it seems done well enough. Special mention goes to the father, Jacques, who conveys his personality through talks with Ironwood and Weiss: he’s a business man first and foremost who seems to be willing to control his daughter for the sake of his reputation and company as well as quick to anger given his talk to Ironwood and implied past talks with the wife.

We also have scenes with RNJR particularly around Jaune and Ruby. One thing I didn’t comment on during the first episode was the lack of real impact of Pyrrha’s death on the team. Ruby, despite seeing Pyrrha die, only laughed at Jaune’s bunny hoodie despite it being linked to the cereal that Pyrrha promoted. Ruby’s laughter made the scene awkward. Here, they seem to be trying to rectify the problem by making it clear how it impacted them. Jaune is seen practicing to an old video that Pyrrha made in the dead of night while Ruby had nightmares of Pyrrha’s death. It works to establish the  impact of Pyrrha’s death but seems like a whiplash compared to the first episode.

The show also seems to be trying to establish the impact of the Grimm as we get a scene where RNJR goes to a town that Jaune once went to with his family to find it decimated. There is a portion with a guard and the team trying to get help for him only for him to pass away. In addition, the village is burned and in ruin with bodies everywhere. The sense of death and dread associated with the Grimm is more powerful here than in any of the past volumes.

The tone isn’t completely dark though, there are some small elements of comedy in this show but, unlike the first three volumes, the comedy is less abundant and serves to be a prelude to tragedy in RNJR’s case or to show how Weiss’s life is like in the case of Klein’s personality shift.

All and all, the show is trying to establish a darker tone but still maintain a stronger character focus with some levity. The tone is much better executed and the events of the last volume have clear impact on the cast.

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