Having completed their last objective with the resistance android Lilly, 2B and 9S are spending some downtime in the ruined city when Pascal approaches them with a request for them to help find a lost member of their village. NieR: Automata Episode 7 sees the duo head off to the Forest Kingdom in search of the missing machine life form.
As a medium, anime often seems to be obsessed with jokes. No matter how severe or dour a series is, it will most likely break character at some point and crack a few jokes. While this isn’t always bad, if used improperly, it can create tonal problems within a series. In the past, NieR: Automata Ver. 1.1a has balanced its lighter moments well, utilizing them as a release valve for the show’s drama and tension. This is best seen through the use of the supporting character Jackass. However, in NieR: Automata Episode 7, the show crosses that line to the point where the zaniness actively hurts the episode as a whole.
This week’s episode opens with 2B and 9S observing local animal life in what appears to be downtime for the duo. During their musings, 9S begins to wonder about the new machine life forms they encountered in the desert, questioning why they haven’t heard back from Command about them yet. But their discussion is cut short when they see Pascal and another machine from the village running around in a blind panic.
Upon investigating the matter, it turns out that the machine life form’s little sister has gone off to the Forest Kingdom in search of repair parts for it. So the machine and Pascal implore 2B and 9S to help them find the missing sister.
This is the sequence to me that brings NieR: Automata Episode 7 down a peg from the rest of the series. As the two machines plead for help, the show hams up their concern to eye-rolling levels. Unfortunately, the sequence continues on too long, causing the pain to amplify. It doesn’t completely ruin the episode or anything, but it hurts more than it helps.
Once 2B, 9S, and Pascal head out searching for the missing machine, the episode steadies itself as the trip slips into a discussion about what constitutes a person and when they are no longer themselves. I enjoyed this scene a lot. It delivers quite a bit of thought to the episode, leaving the viewer with something to mentally chew on even after the episode has wrapped up.
The trio’s arrival in the Forest Kingdom and what they find there creates an air of tension and danger for much of the episode. What they ultimately find builds into the show’s larger plots, as more hints that not all is what it appears to be are left for the viewer to ponder.
NieR: Automata Episode 7 delivers a solid entry into the series, even if it stumbles with its over-reliance on humor. Instead, it continues to deliver on the game’s core narrative while weaving little moments of thought-provoking conversation the franchise is known for.
NieR: Automata Episode 7 is streaming on Crunchyroll.
NieR: Automata Ver. 1.1a Episode 7 - “[Q]uestionable actions”
- Rating - 7.5/107.5/10
NieR: Automata Ver. 1.1a Episode 7 delivers a solid entry into the series, even if it stumbles with its over-reliance on humor. Instead, it continues to deliver on the game’s core narrative while weaving little moments of thought-provoking conversation the franchise is known for.