The Wandering Witch Returns to World Conquest Zvezda Plot

Posted on May 19 2021

Welcome, all, again. Our last discussion concerned a dark plot by an abused healer to remake his world, so I thought a much lighter take on world conquest might cleanse the palate: World Conquest Zvezda Plot. True, I’m going back a few years for this one, but what harm since Zvezda ultimately proves to be led by an immortal, anyway? This is one of those rarest of beasts in the anime world, an original series that inspired its manga and light novel interpretations, not vice versa. Co-written by its director Tensai Okamura, the show follows a renewed push for world conquest by the secret society Zvezda after their seemingly random and at least partly ineffectual recruitment of runaway Asuta Jimon, afterwards code-named Dva. But can history really hinge upon the actions of an unknown, overlooked, and otherwise maligned underling? Well, yeah, it usually does.

World domination sounds more like punishment than reward, but don’t say that around Kate Hoshimiya (aka Lady Venera), the pint-sized leader of Zvezda. She’s absolutely convinced that she’s up to the task, and is intent upon dragging her loyal band of followers down that rabbit hole with her. At least, she normally is. But when we and Asuta meet her, she seems to be having a crisis of faith, running away from home on her pink, training-wheels-still-attached bicycle. Asuta has just become a runaway himself after a fight with his father, but is moved to pity by Kate’s obvious youth and vulnerability. So she quickly swindles him out of his only food and proceeds to berate, insult, and even physically attack him, all of which he tolerates (with varying degrees of restraint) in an effort to protect her from harm as Tokyo abruptly shuts down for curfew under imposed martial law. And although Asuta is unable to take Kate’s talk of secret societies and world conquest seriously, he is quickly confronted with the military’s genuine interest in either capturing or eradicating her. Given that his day can’t possibly get any weirder, the world’s least-convincing and least-convinced new Zvezda recruit places himself directly between little Kate and a tank. Fate chokes; history stutter-steps; gods and demons howl in laughter. And Kate is back on track!

But on track for what, exactly? Notwithstanding the military’s glaring animosity, just how much of a threat can one little girl be? And against whom? Well, let’s address that by clearing some stuff up: Kate isn’t an isolated actor; Kate isn’t always little; Kate is, however, adorable and very thoroughly adored. Asuta discovers that Zvezda does indeed exist, with both a worldwide membership and a lengthy historical pedigree (only later will he learn the terrifying fact that Zvezda has only ever had one leader, and that she still rules). After they overwhelm and escape the tank unit, Kate begins introducing Asuta to other members of the Zvezda HQ staff. He has already encountered several of them as they were looking for the runaway Kate, but now comes under the full focus of their scrutiny–particularly that of Itsuka Shikabane (aka Lady Plamya), who often acts like Kate’s aggressively overprotective older sister. Plamya tends to take point and be the first into actual combat, skillfully wielding a katana. Her father, an ex-gangster named Goro who fights for Zvezda as General Pepel, prefers using explosives and firearms; Goro’s protege Yasu (aka Odin), who followed him to Zvezda, is a bumbling incompetent of a fighter but a fiendish smoker. He often purloins then mishandles the technological inventions of the brilliant Professor Um, a scantily clad young lady actually named Natasha or Natalia, depending upon who’s addressing her. And generally wearing no clothing at all is Roboko, a sleekly curvaceous robot girl who loves her daily soap opera[s] and is powered by raw udo.

This ragtag group faces off against both the government and another secret society called White Light, which is dedicated to maintaining order and neutralizing Zvezda. White Light has its own personnel problems, however, particularly the conscientiousness and moral compass of White Robin, who is actually Asuta’s classmate Renge. Naturally kind-hearted, Renge is dedicated to the cause but questions her organization’s extremism in dogma and tactics, which tendency sees her repeatedly marginalized during operations. And her fall clears a path for the promotion of her merciless colleague, White Egret. As White Light and government forces cooperate to hammer Zvezda, Kate will need all her skill and cunning as her supporters fall one by one. Most of all, she will finally need real commitment from the one member of her staff who still hasn’t drunk the Kool-Aid, Asuta. Can he somehow save Kate, his friends, or even himself? And will the light of Zvezda finally shine throughout this world? This show is well worth revisiting (on Crunchyroll, for instance), so have another look!

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