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English Dub Review: Requiem of the Rose King “Requiem of the Rose King”

Preview (Spoilers below):

As two armies prepare for a decisive battle at Bosworth Field, Richard questions the meaning of waging this war.

Our opinion :

It’s been one hell of a journey for the Demon King. It’s full of violence, tears, betrayal and death. Now his quest has reached its conclusion, with him leading his army to war against his latest adversary, Richmond. The fate of his throne heavily depends on the outcome of the war, and that’s what I was there for.

The second half of Requiem of the Pink King is one of the best I’ve seen this year when it comes to its storytelling and characters. Once I got past its faceless secondary characters and confusing elements, I found myself surprisingly committed to Richard’s teenage journey to assume the throne. Even last week’s episode did enough to almost make me shed a tear or two. The finale therefore had a lot of expectations to satisfy to conclude the adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragic tales on a resounding note. Unsurprisingly, that’s exactly what he did.

The finale managed to convey the emotional impact of last week’s episode and injected it into Richard’s final chapter of his lifelong quest. Some of the episode’s emotional depth came from Richard, as his illness is still affecting his health. But, more importantly, he questions his true identity regarding his birthright since his mother told him he was not the son of the Duke of York. Fortunately, Richard receives this answer after meeting James Tyrell and acknowledging Henry’s own struggles as king.

Some might say the battle on the Bosworth field is my favorite part of the episode because of its high-stakes sequences. Well, they’re only half right. While some of the violence is still shown through imagery, the whole scene alone was mesmerizing indeed. However, this did not match my actual highlight of the finale.

Like the final scene of last week’s episode, in which Richard confronted his mother, the moment between Richard and Catesby hits me in the feels. Through its flashbacks and Kow Otani’s beautiful score, this scene perfectly reflects the everlasting relationship they have shared throughout their lives. It also resembles Richard’s deep respect for Catesby, who is one of the only people to accept him as he is despite his appearance. Ian Sinclair certainly deserves all the credit for delivering an outstanding performance as Catesby in the finale and other previous chapters.

My only slight issue with the episode is that the ending felt incomplete, with Richard being injured before being saved by James, who takes the form of Richard. After that, Catesby brings an unconscious Richard back to the kingdom, with Richmond being the victor in the war. Although, given that the manga is still ongoing, it makes sense that it should have ended the season like this. Plus, the moment Richard meets Joan of Arc and James feels like Richard finally learning to love himself after spending years feeling tormented by his looks.

Other than that, “Requiem of the Rose King” manages to end its first season with an emotional bang. What started out as a typical adaptation of Shakespeare’s stories gradually turns into a very compelling tale of love and tragedy. The ending means Richard’s fight could continue into a second season, but we’ll have to see how the show’s first season plays out with other viewers.