I’m kind of thinking that Vlad might have to work for it if he’s going to try and crucify that one.
The eighth episode of Fate Apocrypha begins with an info dump from Darnic on how awesome Vlad is and how he can’t lose while in his territory. Then we get the clash of two armies as Archer of the Red wastes a good number of them with a single attack until Frankenstein uses her NP to neutralize it. Vlad then starts going at it with Karna in a very beautiful display of fire and stakes.
Achilles gets his chariot slowed by Avicebron and then gets baited into ditching it to go against Chiron. He recognizes him since they knew each other in life, leading to a flashback for Achilles upon how he’d trained him and told him about his weak-spot. It’s a bitter pill for him to swallow that he’d face someone he once considered an ally, which Chiron chides him for since there is no mercy in the Holy Grail War.
Sieg, meanwhile, heads onto the battlefield to find his kin dying left and right. He tries to help one of the homunculi that survived, who explains that they exist only to fight and die. He decides that he wants to free them so they don’t just die pointlessly on the battlefield as tools and asks one of them to help him do so.
Then we get Shirou’s introspective on the war with Semiramis. He reveals to her that his wish for the Greater Grail is to love and heal all humans… while being draped in shadows by the flames in the background… so, you know, not ominous at all. He’s going all in, planning to join in the fight using a Katana that Shakespeare made for him, and she gives him her blessing to do so.
At the same time, Mordred rides onto the battlefield with her Master. That Riding skill comes in handy as it basically makes it possible for her to swerve around the fallen golems, but Kairi looks like he’s ready to throw-up given how reckless it appears. I pity the man, but it looks awesome.
In contrast, Caules watches Berserker fighting in the war from his room while lost in thought. Her Noble Phantasm releases electricity and she can absorb it, making her a perpetual motion machines that can fight endlessly. Yet he feels uneasy and the way the flower was framed in the screen sets up some bad foreshadowing by my account.
Astolfo also gets into it, deciding to just try and take out the flying fortress of the enemy faction. But its huge and he doesn’t want to use Sieg’s kin as batteries for that as Semiramis sends out her flying monsters to attack him. He takes it in stride and dives right into the fray as Seig finally makes it to the castle.
In the final minutes of the story, Avicebron makes himself Spartacus’ Master and sends him out as a weapon against his old faction as Shirou goes to try and bring Frankenstein over to his side to replace him.
So, this episode teases us with snippets of the different fights and abilities. Vlad can go at it with Karna for a prolonged period since he’s fighting on his own homeland, while Frankenstein can fight forever without much of a problem. Chiron and Achilles’ past pretty much put the latter at a disadvantage because of his personality, much like how Astolfo not wanting to rely on his NP because it would be an insult to Sieg is hindering his.
And then we learned Shirou’s wish, who wants to save mankind, apparently. His name might be Kotomine, but are we sure there’s no Emiya in the middle. If only it wasn’t framed in such a way that looked ominous I’d believe him more. Not to mention he has a revelation of Rider coming towards the battle as well, which is… strange, given he’s supposed to be a human and the only other person to display that ability is Joan herself.