Maoyuu Maou Yuusha 07 – Changing the course of history
February 20, 2013 Leave a comment
The story of Maoyuu Maou Yuusha is more of a retelling of western civilisation than anything else, with the characters of Maou and Yuusha acting as the key figures in the creation of many important, and even essential inventions. Maou is the enlightened one with knowledge that no one else possesses, and an ability to look at what humanity needs in order to survive and create a sustainable society and economy. At the same time, her wish to stop the war is highly idealistic, and arguably futile given humanities propensity towards destruction, conflict and greed. Her wish to stop the war isn’t wrong, because as we have already seen throughout the series so far, this particular war, one without end or even beginning has caused hardship and strife throughout the human and demon realms. But her goal is almost too grand to ever be fully achieved, and yet, to even wish for, and strive towards such a goal will bring about the necessary changes to help stop, or at least slow down the circle of violence between demons and humans.
The changes that she has brought, particularly to Winter Nation have had a clear and profound impact, with Winter King striving to create a just society, and one that doesn’t have to rely upon the generosity of other, richer nations to sustain itself. In this respect her changes have had an important impact, and have truly managed to create a country that isn’t entirely reliant on the war effort to sustain itself. However, in doing so she has broken a cycle that provided profit for Central Kingdom and all of its allies and trading partners, thus singling out Winter Kingdom as potentially dangerous. By breaking away from the original trading agreements that effectively left Winter Kingdom at the mercy of those in Central Kingdom, Maou and Winter King and sending a message that Winter Kingdom is strong enough to maintain its own economy and society. This in turn sets Winter Kingdom up in opposition to those who until recently had power over the majority of the human realm, and the possibility of further conflict. By breaking these well-worn links, Maou has created the possibility of conflict within the human realm, rather than between the human and demon realms. In doing so we see that conflict is perhaps inevitable when there are those who are greedy, ignorant, or stupid, and it doesn’t necessarily have to be between two worlds, but between two neighbouring kingdoms.
To say conflict is inevitable may appear rather pessimistic about humanity, but in a way it is entirely true, conflict is almost inevitable, but not necessarily for the reasons that many might expect. As we see towards the end of the episode, Byakuya Ou and Katame Shirei-tan are already plotting their revenge against Winter Kingdom and Higashi no Saishou for shaming them, at least as they see it. This conflict is based on personal interest rather than a grand narrative of good versus evil as we see in the ongoing conflict between the humans and demons, but it is nonetheless important. This goes back to a point Yuusha makes when talking to Onna Kishi about being unable to extinguish the sparks of conflict. Even if the current war is brought to an end, conflict will ultimately start once again, maybe not on such a large scale, but certainly still dangerous and destructive regardless of whom is involved. As he further points out, ending the conflict wont result in peace, and instead more inequalities and injustices will likely be created be a sudden and abrupt end to the current conflict. This all fits into Maou’s grand narrative of building and reinforcing the very basic building blocks of society through education, crop management and strengthening individual economies and broader society.
Through all of this we have the figures of Yuusha, Onna Kishi and Maou who are all attempting to do the best they can with the skills and knowledge available to them. However, as we have seen in past episodes, and particularly in this episode, they are in some respects living in their own world, a place where their dreams and ideals can become reality with the simple use of their knowledge and skills. At the same time Yuusha envies Onna Kishi and Maou because they can become different people, whereas he only has his ability to fight and cannot change himself as much as he may wish. As he suggests several times in this episode, everyone around him is amazing, they are all pushing themselves forward and coming up with no ways of thinking and new inventions. By comparison, Yuusha is a static character, and although the way he thinks and views the world may have changed, he as an individual has not. This is perhaps partly because he is too strong, and in many respects cant even be considered a human due to his immense strength and the way he walks through life. His relationship with Maou and Onna Kishi anchors him to the real world, and as we see them fighting over who gets the right to sleep in his bed he becomes slightly more human and in many respects, normal. There are problems on the horizon of course with the threat of further conflict and suffering in the human and demon realms. Furthermore, Maou has to return to the demon world to pacify all of the tribes and renew her abilities as the Demon King, because without her power and influence everything will have been for nought.