Although this was still an enjoyable episode of The Saint’s Magic Power is Omnipotent, something about it feels like it wasn’t quite as good as it could have been. Possibly this is because the pivotal moment at the end, where Sei unleashes her Saintly powers and purifies the entire forest in one golden blast, is kind of rushed. It isn’t the first time she manages to use that power in the episode, which may account for it not landing with the impact it deserves, but it’s arguably a lot more important than her figuring out how to imbue plants with her magic, rendering them more efficacious. That’s because it’s not just the defining moment for the kingdom, proving she’s the Saint once and for all – it’s also the place where she at least unconsciously realizes her feelings for Albert.
That there is likely an unconscious, or at least subconscious, aspect to her figuring two things out at the same time feels like a given, seeing how (deliberately?) dense Sei can be about romantic issues. In fact, as we saw in the dancing scene a couple of episodes back, Sei’s still fairly uncomfortable around Albert, attraction notwithstanding. But it is the thought of him being injured or killed that unleashes her wave of purification magic in the forest, which is a major step up from the basic healing she was employing mere moments earlier. We could also infer that it was thinking of him specifically that triggered her magic in the garden, too – yes, she thought about everyone she knows in Salutania and how happy she is living in what she views as a warmer world than her old one, but Albert is the last person we see in her thoughts, and shortly thereafter, the globe of magic is released from her heart. That’s a pretty strong correlation, and the question then becomes whether or not Sei has realized it.
Or whether anyone has, really, because there are enough people watching the fight to have noticed that it’s Albert being threatened that sets Sei off. He himself may not be aware, but I’d bet money that Yuri is. It would be easy to interpret his physical closeness to Sei as him having a crush on her, but I’m more inclined to think that’s him getting close to a fascinating research subject. Ever since he learned about her garden episode, he’s been trying to figure out how she did it (writing on how other Saints unleashed their power is frustratingly absent), so presumably he’s not planning to waste any of his time around her until he gets an answer. He’s also almost worryingly gleeful about taking out monsters, but we’ve known he was, uh, dangerously obsessed with magic since his introduction, so while it may be a little unsettling to see him happily blasting wolves away with fire and earth magic, it also isn’t out of character. Plus he has to keep his precious research subject safe, because there’s no guarantee that Sei will be able to think fast enough in her first battle to protect herself.
That’s another interesting takeaway from how her power is triggered: Sei would rather be the protector than the protected. She hasn’t said as much, but we’ve seen that she’s someone who needs to be doing things; just sitting around and trading on her status doesn’t interest her at all, and may in fact make her uncomfortable. Her greatest desire seems to be useful or helpful, and as the Saint, she’s in a position to do that. I think she would have been able to access her Saint magic no matter who was in danger of being eaten by an evil panther monster; it being Albert just added urgency to her reaction. (Or, cynically, made for a better plot point.)
It should also reassure Albert a little once someone clues him in, because he definitely sees Yuri as a rival for Sei’s affections. We don’t see them interact much, but the glare he gives Yuri when he and Sei get out of the carriage speaks pretty loudly on that front. Again, not that I think he needs to worry – the bigger fear should probably be Yuri locking her in a lab somewhere to study her or chaining her up like one of the books in the Forbidden Archive.
But that would be an entirely different sort of story, wouldn’t it?
The Saint’s Magic Power is Omnipotent is currently streaming on