Fate/Zero Episode 4

Battle time. Last week, we ended up with Saber facing off against Lancer. While the two fight, Kiritsugu and Maiya hide out in the shadows searching for the Master of Lancer. Both combatants seem fairly evenly matched due to the uncertainty of their weapons. Lancer is unable to discern the length of Saber's blade, while Saber is unable to discern the true weapon of Lancer (since he uses two lances). Kiritsugu and Maiya find the Master, but Kiritsugu also sees Assassin, who is also watching the battle for Kirei. Lancer offers to give his true name, but his Master orders him to finish the battle, allowing him to use his Noble Phantasm (his Master is Waver's professor from the first episode). Lancer finally reveals his true weapon, his longspear. He figures out that Saber hides her sword to hide her identity and moves to uncover it nonetheless. From the battle, Saber manages to realize that Lancer's spear is able to cancel out magic, so she removes her magical armor and battles in a dress. Saber moves to end the battle with a single strike, but Lancer reveals that his second spear is also part of his Noble Phantasm and uses it to stop her attack and counter. Seeing this, Rider (who's been watching the whole time) decides he wishes to join the battle. Iris is unable to heal Saber's most recent wound, and Saber realizes that Lancer's second spear inflicts cursed wounds that cannot be healed. She finally identifies Lancer as Diarmuid of the Love Spot. However, Lancer has seen Saber's golden blade, so he is able to identify her as well. Before they are able to fight again, Rider interrupts the battle (very brazenly introducing himself). The battle in this episode was amazing! Absolutely thrilling to watch. I really like how Fate/Zero approaches the Grail Wars like a very serious strategy sort of game, where each side has to be so careful about what they reveal. There's just so much more strategy than there was in Fate/Stay Night and it's great to watch.

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