It is the fight of the season!
Episode 12 finally pits Kumoko against her greatest enemy: the Earth Dragon, Araba. And just as expected, it is the most grueling, longest battle of her life lasting almost the entire episode. It is brutal and heart-pounding from start to finish, and we see our dear spider being pushed to her utmost limits.
Araba is indeed a strong opponent. Despite Kumoko’s near godlike abilities, they were never enough for the vicious dragon. In fact, Araba proves to be far more intelligent than he seemed, quickly spending all of his skill points to acquire skills that perfectly counter Kumoko’s battle style. And he did all of that on the spot.
For all of Kumoko’s wits and cunning, she is clearly outmatched throughout the early and middle parts of her epic battle. Not since the fight with the monkeys did we see her suffering grave injuries and failing to damage her opponents, making her almost give up more than once. However, her fighting spirit burns stronger with each blood she spills, both from herself and her enemy.
In the end, Kumoko’s extreme tenacity and determination are what allowed her to win the day. But unlike her previous fights, she is not satisfied with her victory as Araba finally gives up after spending everything in his arsenal. And this is a really sad moment because despite Kumoko’s desire to defeat the great dragon, seeing him simply accept his fate without fighting til the end is not what she wants; after all, she herself never gave up despite being outclassed.
Nevertheless, Araba is finally defeated and Kumoko receives a hard earned but bittersweet victory. Now that the path is clear, our favorite spider could escape the labyrinth at last to begin another adventure. Meanwhile, dark forces are stirring once more even as Shun prepares to take the mantle of a Hero.
Overall, episode 12 gives us the best fight scene so far. There are sad moments, and we see Kumoko growing in character, and power, once more. But what awaits her as she leaves the labyrinth?
Episode score: 9/10.