It’s Phantom: Requiem for the Phantom episode 3, and it’s time for Zwei to face his first real test as an assassin.
Claudia holds Zwei’s ID, showing that his real name is Reiji Azuma. Meanwhile, Lizzie heads off to Mexico, where she kills an FBI agent. An ex-Navy SEAL who is affiliated with Inferno apparently becomes a suspect and goes to Inferno to help him get out of the jam, feeling that they owe him that.
Back at the compound, Ein finishes up Zwei’s training with hand-to-hand combat using knives, where Zwei realizes that Ein could have easily killed him during their previous knife fight if she had wanted to. That night, Scythe Master decides that it’s time to give Zwei his first test.
The ex-SEAL is brought to the compound and then told that he has risked exposing Inferno due to his selling weapons to terrorists and coming under investigation from the FBI. However, they’ll give him one last chance: He can go into the compound and get any weapons he likes. They’ll then send in an assassin after him, and if he can survive he wins.
Scythe Master then tells Zwei that he is to kill the man, something to which Zwei objects to, forcing Ein to once again reiterate that he can either choose to be an assassin or die right there. Zwei relents and goes in after the man, but his hesitation gives the ex-SEAL an upper hand. Zwei is about to be killed when he finally stabs and shoots the man, killing him. Zwei immediately becomes distressed over this, and when Ein shows up, she repeats what she has said before: the only way to live as oneself as an assassin is to let go of all feelings.
This series has been progressing rather steadily thus far, and while it’s been somewhat predictable, it’s still been done very well and hasn’t tried glossing over Zwei and Ein’s dilemma of having to choose between killing and dying.
There are three things I want to note about this episode:
The first is Claudia’s continuing fascination, and perhaps romantic interest, in Zwei. Claudia clearly has personal issues with Inferno somehow, and the more I see of her, the more I’m sure that she’ll be central to whatever the resolution to Zwei and Ein’s dilemma is.
The second point is Ein giving Zwei The Catcher in the Rye to read. Now, I’m at the disadvantage of having never read the book, but by reading reviews online, it could be interpreted in various ways, including seeing how the main character is able to live by closing in on himself and locking everyone else out (probably how Ein interprets the book) or by reading it in the exact opposite way: that closing in on yourself isn’t a way to live, which is how I suspect Zwei will ultimately read it.
The final point has to do with Zwei’s, and previously Ein’s, eyes. At times they’ll seem to change color or something similar. In Zwei’s case, they occured just before he killed the ex-SEAL, and I’ve seen Ein’s eyes do it as well. I’m not sure if this is showing them losing their humanity or otherwise withdrawing into mental lifelessness or is some result of the mind control or both. I suppose we’ll find out eventually.