What a beautifully, refreshing start to a new chapter in the life of RWBY. Volume four acted a wonderful foundation for the transition of both the audience and our heroes. We are no longer in the safe little bubble of Vale, the beginnings and innocent place. Now, we see our place in the grand, complex world that is Remnant. This volume would be weak–even starting, it would be weak–without volume 4.
Here on out be Spoilers, so read at your own risk. The episode is available for free right now for Roosterteeth *free* members. Go watch it now if you can rather than wait until the Saturday Youtube upload.
In the very first episode, we are already aware of the challenges the girls face. We get introduced to each one. Of course, RNJR is the primary focus as they carry the main story, but the other girls each got a chance to shine. Let’s look at them before we go to the bulk.
First up was a brief moment for Weiss. I find this point in time interesting because, Weiss seemed really uncomfortable with the fact that the pilot didn’t want to help those people. Maybe even a little confused. While training in the academy, most of the people she met were focused on helping and protecting others. It is one of the things she trained for. Her sister trained her for it, too. She is also in a very passive position–she has to rely on this stranger to get her to her destination, and she can’t *do* anything. She can’t fly, she can’t fight. It’ll be interesting to see what she does once they land.
In Blake’s situation, we are seeing that she is trying to step up to be leader of the Revolt against the White Fang movement. We see a little bit of her following in Ruby’s positive footsteps, where she tries to assure everyone that it will work out. She seems genuine, but also a little awkward in the role. Ilia is becoming a big part of this transition for Blake. It is obvious that she wants to protect her old friend, but those feelings conflict with what is about to go down. It is interesting to note that Ilia explicitly says Blake’s plan of exposing the Brothers won’t work, and I think she mostly meant that it would backfire. The White Fang probably has their hand in everything, so that means the enemy is far bigger than Blake can imagine. On a side note, it is nice to see Sun and Blake’s father agree on something :)
Yang. This was the moment I was waiting for. I had been apprehensive about how they would handle Yang and her trauma. I was not at all surprised to find out that she went looking for Raven rather than Ruby. Sure, the end of V4 seemed like she was heading the opposite way, but it makes sense. (I think the perspective was just wonky for us). I have bee saying since around V2 that Yang might be separated from Ruby for a time. But, to the point–Yang experience in the general-store bar place was a red flag. She is totally not over what happened with Adam. Never has her hand shook like that before. She is still on the verge of a break down, and I am thrilled that they are going this route. This is how it should be! Training at home with your father has nothing on real experience. I was expecting this.
Okay, so now that all that is out of the way, we come to RNJR and Qrow. The details in the environment blew me away, as did the shadows and details of hair and clothing. Way to improve, RT!
We already know that Qrow is suspicious about the lack of people in the academy. Sadly, Qrow isn’t very adapt at handling those kinds of things. The meeting with Lionheart was merely there to give us an idea of of where things stood. I guess now it makes more sense why Qrow asked Raven about the Spring Maiden, and why they are so important. This is means the story can go one of a couple of ways–Maidens separately each get their own respective relics; the bad guys get the relics as they take over the powers of the Maidens; Team RWBY and/or RNJR get the powers and the relics.
Can I just say that Oscar is just adorable? Because he is. I want to pinch his cheeks off, he is so cute! I think it would be interesting for Oscar to crush on Ruby. Even hubby agrees it would be cute. Not necessarily them becoming a thing, just the character arc and all that.
And can I say that Drunk Qrow is just hilarious? Geez…and that floppy motion was pretty cool, too. But mostly, it was how proud of himself he was. During the intros, I was laughing so hard.
“Hi, my name is Oscar Pine”
“waaait for it!”
“But you may no me as Professor Ozpin.”
Cue face-fall, Qrow’s triumphant remark, and then falling flat on his face.
All I can say is that this volume is going to be interesting. Kid gloves are off. Even the lyrics say “it’s gonna get worse” in the opening.