List of Fate/Zero episodes
Fate/Zero is a 2011-2012 action, thriller, fantasy anime based on the prequel light novels to Type-Moon's visual novel, Fate/stay night. The novels are written by Gen Urobuchi, who is also known as the writer for the anime Puella Magi Madoka Magica, and illustrated by Takashi Takeuchi, co-founder and main artist of Type-Moon.
Set ten years before the events of Fate/stay night, the anime tells the story of the Fourth Holy Grail War, a secret magical tournament held in Fuyuki City, Japan where seven magicians known as Masters summoned Servants, reincarnations of legendary souls and heroes from all across time, where they fight in a deadly battle royale where the winner obtains the Holy Grail, a magical legendary chalice capable of granting wishes. Its characters include both younger versions of characters in Fate/stay night, their parents and relatives, and original characters. Fate/Zero's main protagonist, Kiritsugu Emiya - foster father of Fate/stay night's protagonist, Shirō Emiya - is known as a merciless mage killer who joins the tournament on behalf of his wife's family, the Einzberns.
The anime is jointly produced by Aniplex, Nitroplus, Notes, Seikaisha, and Ufotable. It is also directed by Ei Aoki; produced by Atsuhiro Iwakami; music by Yuki Kajiura; character design by Atsushi Ikariya and Tomonori Sudou; and art, 3D, and photography directions by Koji Eto, Kōjirō Shishido, and Yuichi Terao respectively. The anime premiered on Tokyo MX, Tochigi TV, and Gunma TV, with the first season airing from October 1 to December 24, 2011 and later dates on TVS, TVA, MBS, CTC, tvk, TVh, TVQ, BS11, and Kids Station. The second season aired from April 7 to June 23, 2012. In the first season, the opening theme song was "Oath Sign" by LiSA and the ending theme was "Memoria" by Eir Aoi. In the second season, the opening theme song was "to the beginning" by Kalafina and the ending theme is "Sora wa Takaku Kaze wa Utau" (空は高く風は歌う?, lit. "Up on the Sky, the Wind Sings") by Luna Haruna. The song "Manten" (满天?, lit. "The Whole Sky") by Kalafina was used as a special ending theme song in episodes 18 and 19.
|1||"Summoning Ancient Heroes"
"Eirei Shōkan" (英霊召喚)
|October 1, 2011|
|Eight years ago in Germany, Kiritsugu Emiya and his wife, Irisviel "Iri" von Einzbern, welcome the birth of their daughter, Ilyasviel. Though Kiritsugu fears he will lead Irisviel to her death in the upcoming Fourth Holy Grail War, she assures him that he is a good man who will fulfill their ideals. Three years ago, the priest Kirei Kotomine learns that he has been chosen as a participant for the Holy Grail War. Kirei's father Risei, the war's moderator on behalf of the Catholic Church, and Tokiomi Tosaka, another participant, arrange for Kirei to become Tokiomi's pupil in magecraft in order to give Tokiomi an advantage and help Kirei get over the death of his wife. One year ago in Fuyuki City, Kariya Matō visits his childhood friend Aoi Tōsaka and her daughters, Rin and Sakura. Kariya is shocked to learn Sakura has been adopted by the Matō family, as the Matōs want a heir that can use magic, and is horrified to discover what has been done to her. Confronting his father, Zōken, Kariya strikes a deal to implant himself with parasitic worms that will give him the magic needed to participate in the upcoming war. If he wins the Grail, Sakura will be freed and returned to her family. In the present, Kayneth Archibald El-Melloi dismisses and humiliates one of his students, Waver Velvet, who theorizes anyone can be a great mage by hard work and practice, rather than by virtue of their bloodline alone. Waver decides to prove his teacher wrong by stealing Kayneth's artifact, which is needed to summon a Servant, in order to join the war himself. As Kirei, who has now summoned his servant Assassin (Hassan-i Sabbah), and Kiritsugu learn of each other's skills, they are disturbed by how they cannot know what the other man's goals for the war are. After receiving the scabbard of Excalibur, Iri is hopeful that they can summon King Arthur of the Saber class, but Kiritsugu worries that Arthur's chivalry will clash with his pragmatic methods. As Kiritsugu, Tokiomi, Kariya and Waver summon their servants, Kiritsugu and Iri are stunned to see the summoned King Arthur is actually a woman.|
"Itsuwari no Sentan" (偽りの戦端)
|October 8, 2011|
|Waver has a hard time commanding his Servant Rider (Alexander the Great), as Rider is more interested in how the world has changed since his time and intends to conquer it once he wins the War. Saber has formed a poor opinion of Kiritsugu, considering him cold-hearted, but is surprised to see him have a tender moment with his daughter Ilya. Saber also admits she admires Kiritsugu and Iri's wishes to save the world, as she, too, wishes to save Britain. In Fuyuki City, serial killer Ryūnosuke Uryū has murdered an entire family except a young boy to summon a demon, but inadvertently calls the servant Caster (Bluebeard). When Uryū offers the boy to Caster as a sacrifice, Caster pretends to let him go, then kills him with a horrific Cthulhu-esque monster. Uryū, overjoyed to meet someone as sadistic as him, vows to follow Caster anywhere and becomes his Master. Upon learning the seventh and final Master has been chosen, Kirei orders Assassin to kill Tokiomi, only for Assassin to be killed by Tokiomi's servant Archer (Gilgamesh), while attempting to break into his mansion.|
|3||"Land of Fuyuki"
"Fuyuki no Chi" (冬木の地)
|October 15, 2011|
|Kirei announces his resignation from the war due to Assassin's elimination and is granted asylum by Risei. However, this is actually a ruse by Kirei, Risei and Tokiomi: "Assassin" is not one, but several dozen people. With everyone else believing him out of the game, Kirei can send the Assassins to spy on them without suspicion. Waver informs Rider of Assassin's demise, but the latter is only interested of defeating President Clinton, acquiring his country's military weapons and having a good time. Saber and Iri arrive at Fuyuki City to meet up with Kiritsugu, but decide to tour the city since this is Iri's first time abroad. Meanwhile, Kiritsugu meets up with his assistant Maiya Hisau, who informs him the other Masters believe Iri is Saber's Master and that she has smuggled in the guns they need for the war, including his Contender pistol. As Iri has a good time at the beach, Saber detects another Servant at the harbor. Once there, they encounter Lancer, who challenges Saber to a duel.|
|4||"Blade of the Demonic Spear"
"Masō no Yaiba" (魔槍の刃)
|October 22, 2011|
|Saber and Lancer fight, while complimenting each other on their skills and chivalry. At the same time, Kiritsugu and Maiya are scouting the battle, with Kiritsugu spotting Lancer's hidden Master. As he is about to snipe him, Kiritsugu spots Assassin, who is relaying the battle to Kirei and Tokiomi. Lancer's Master orders him to use his Noble Phantasms, Gae Dearg, the anti-magic spear and Gae Buidhe, the cursed spear that inflicts wounds that cannot be healed. From these, Saber recognizes Lancer as Diarmuid of the Love Spot, while Lancer discovers Saber's identity after using Gae Dearg to temporarily dispel the invisibility spell on her sword. Saber, whose left tendon was wounded by Lancer's Gae Buidhe, is about to give it her all when Rider, who was watching the battle from afar, suddenly rides down to the harbor on his chariot, interrupting the battle.|
|5||"The Vicious Beast Roars"
"Kyōjū Hōkō" (凶獣咆吼)
|October 29, 2011|
|Rider introduces himself to Lancer and Saber and asks them to join his army, with both declining. Lancer's Master, Kayneth, reveals himself and mocks Waver, but Rider defends him. Soon after, Archer and Berserker join the battle. Berserker, Kariya's Servant, is a Black Knight covered in a fog that prevents all attempts at gauging his strength. Archer attacks Berserker with his Noble Phantasm, Gate of Babylon, but Berserker keeps evading and using Archer's weapons against him. To prevent Archer from exposing his Noble Phantasm further, Tokiomi expends a Command Seal to order him to withdraw from the battle, much to Archer's displeasure. After seeing Saber, Berserker goes after her and his ability to turn anything he wields into a Noble Phantasm is revealed. Lancer defends Saber out of chivalry, but Kayneth uses a Command Spell to force him to assist Berserker. However, Rider incapacitates Berserker and warns Kayneth to withdraw, or he will side with Saber. After Berserker, Kayneth and Lancer retreat, Rider tells Saber he will not duel her or Lancer until their duel is finished. Elsewhere, Caster watches the battle through a crystal ball and thinks Saber is his long-lost love, while Kirei discovers that the church was being spied on by a familiar.|
|6||"Night of Schemes"
"Bōryaku no Yoru" (謀略の夜)
|November 5, 2011|
|Iri and Saber are driving to Einzbern Castle when they encounter Caster. Caster believes Saber is Jeanne d'Arc, but Saber tells him he is mistaken and drives him away. Returning to his lair, Caster is convinced "Jeanne" has lost her memories. At his hotel, Kayneth scolds Lancer for failing to kill Saber. Lancer is defended by Sola-Ui Nuada-Re Sophia-Ri, Kayneth's fiancee, who is maintaining Lancer's existence by supplying him with mana and has fallen for him due to his magic love spot. When the hotel's occupants are ordered to evacuate, Kayneth realizes Saber's Master has come for them. After making sure all civilians have evacuated, Kiritsugu and Maiya blow up the hotel using explosives. Maiya is found by Kirei, but escapes thanks to Kiritsugu's smoke bomb. When the Assassins inform Kirei, Risei and Tokiomi that Caster and Uryū have been kidnapping and sacrificing children, Risei is disgusted by their pointless murders and their jeopardising the war's secrecy. In a meeting between Archer and Kirei, the former convinces the latter to spy on the other Masters and find out what drives them in order to discover his own desires.|
|7||"The Evil Forest"
"Makyō no Mori" (魔境の森)
|November 12, 2011|
|Risei informs all the active Masters that the war is to be put on hold until Caster, whose killings of children are attracting the public attention, is destroyed, with an additional Command Spell as a reward. In Einzbern Castle, Kiritsugu plans to use the hunt for Caster to attack the other Masters, despite Saber's protests that they should give priority to stopping Caster's atrocities. As Kiritsugu confides in Iri that he would rather escape with her and their daughter and live in peace somewhere, Iri detects Caster arriving from the forest with more children to be sacrificed and sends Saber after him. Saber is ambushed and cornered by Caster's summoned monsters until Lancer appears and joins forces with her. As Iri and Maiya leave the castle, Kayneth, who had survived the hotel bombing thanks to his Volumen Hydragyrum, a giant magical blob of mercury, infiltrates the castle to duel Saber's Master. Kiritsugu evades Kayneth using his Calico M950 and launches a surprise attack with his Contender pistol.|
|8||"The Magus Killer"
"Majutsushi Koroshi" (魔術師殺し)
|November 19, 2011|
|Iri and Maiya are about to escape through the woods until Iri detects Kirei coming their way. Instead of evading him, Iri and Maiya decide to confront him in order to protect Kiritsugu. However, both of them are outmatched. Meanwhile, Kiritsugu is able to wound Kayneth with his Contender pistol. Believing the attack was a fluke, Kayneth decides to increase Hydragyrum's defense even further. Saber and Lancer continue fighting Caster's waves of demonic creatures, which prove limitless due to his Noble Phantasm, his grimoire. Saber manages to clear a path for Lancer, who pierces Caster's grimoire with Gae Dearg, cutting off his source of mana and instantly destroying his minions, causing him to flee. After hiding from an enraged and injured Kayneth, Kiritsugu finally appears and shoots him with his Contender again. Because the Contender uses special anti-magic bullets, Kayneth's Hydragyrum not only fails to protect him, but amplifies his injury significantly. Lancer arrives to save his unconscious master, while Saber rushes to save Iri from Kirei. As Kirei interrogates Iri about Kiritsugu, an Assassin informs him of Saber's approach, leading him to stab Iri before fleeing. Iri survives thanks to Saber's magical healing scabbard Avalon implanted inside her and goes on to heal Maiya.|
|9||"Master and Servant"
"Aruji to Jūsha" (主と従者)
|November 26, 2011|
|Kayneth wakes up with his body tied to a bed. Sola tells Kayneth that his Magic Circuits were destroyed by Kiritsugu's bullets and he can never use magic again. At Sola's mercy, Kayneth has no choice but to relinquish Lancer's command to her. Despite Sola becoming his new Master, Lancer wishes to remain loyal to Kayneth, but Sola convinces him to keep fighting with her, using Kayneth's honor as a pretext. Kiritsugu decides to hunt Kayneth down despite Saber and Iri's wishes to stop Caster. Meanwhile, Waver and Rider manage to find Caster's lair, where they are horrified to see the mutilated bodies of his victims. Before setting Caster's lair on fire, Rider kills an Assassin targeting Waver and drives off two more. With Waver and Rider now knowing their secret, Tokiomi orders Kirei to send his Assassins to spy on them.|
"Rin no Bōken" (凛の冒険)
|December 3, 2011|
|This episode focuses on Tokiomi's daughter, Rin, and her involvement in the Fuyuki City Kidnappings. Despite her young age, Rin is determined to follow in her father's footsteps as a great mage. With the Holy Grail War starting soon, Tokiomi sends Aoi and Rin away for their own safety. At Rin's new school, several children, including her best friend Kotone, have been kidnapped by the Fuyuki Serial Killer. Wishing to save Kotone, Rin heads to Fuyuki City alone. Using a mana detector gifted to her by her father, she eventually finds Uryū using a magic bracelet to hypnotize children. Rin follows Uryū to his hideout, where she is found by him. Rin overloads Uryū's bracelet with mana, destroying it, incapacitating him and freeing the children from his control. With everyone safe, Rin heads home only to be ambushed by one of Caster's monsters. However, Kariya comes to her rescue and later hands her to Aoi. Kirei, who had been spying on them through Assassin, orders him to continue monitoring Kariya.|
|11||"The Grail Dialogue"
"Seihai Mondō" (聖杯問答)
|December 10, 2011|
|Saber is surprised by the sudden arrival of Rider and Waver at Castle Einzbern. Rider declares his intention to have a peaceful discussion with her and Archer on the subject of kingship and the wishes they want the grail to grant. Saber argues that a king should serve his people selflessly and wishes to use the grail's power to save Britain. Rider criticizes her, saying that Saber's emotional distance from her subjects led to their dissatisfaction and proposes his own ideal, namely that people should serve the king, whose extravagant ambitions inspire them in turn. Their talk is interrupted by the arrival of the Assassins. When they rebuff Rider's offer to join the feast, Rider summons his Noble Phantasm "Ionian Hetairoi", the Armies of Macedonia, composed of his loyal soldiers who also became Servants after their death. Rider and his army easily decimate every single Assassin. With their meeting over, Rider tells Saber he no longer recognizes her as a king and departs. A conflicted Saber reveals to Iri that one of her knights left Camelot because he was dissatisfied with her rule.|
|12||"The Grail's Invitation"
"Seihai no Maneki" (聖杯の招き)
|December 17, 2011|
|Thanks to the information provided by the Assassins before their annihilation, Tokiomi and Kirei now know about Rider's Noble Phantasm and decide to let him attack the other Servants first before engaging him. While Maiya transports Iri and Saber to their new base of operations, Kiritsugu reviews his intel about the other participants' whereabouts. At their new base, Saber points out Iri's odd behavior, which forces her to admit that her powers have weakened. Archer questions Kirei about what he learned by spying on the other Masters and points out that Kirei has shown an unusual degree interest in Kariya, despite the minimal threat he poses. From this, Archer concludes that Kirei enjoys seeing the pain and suffering of others. Though initially reluctant to acknowledge his dark nature, Kirei eventually gives in, at which point the Command Spells reappear on his hand, signifying that he is still meant to be a contestant. Since he currently has no Servant, however, Archer hints that he should kill another Master and take control of their Servant.|
"Kindan no Kyōen" (禁断の狂宴)
|December 24, 2011|
|Caster and Uryū return to their lair and are dismayed to see their "artwork" destroyed by Rider's fire. Uryū cheers Caster up by sharing his twisted view that God, who Caster hates the most for Jeanne's death, is just a spectator who enjoys seeing humans do whatever they want. Impressed by his Master's beliefs, Caster plans a "grand spectacle" for God to look upon. Meanwhile, Waver has second thoughts about whether he is a worthy Master for Rider, but Rider encourages him to believe in himself. Suddenly, Waver, Rider, Saber and Iri sense magic from the Mion River. When they arrive, they witness Caster summoning a giant demonic monster. Rider informs the other contestants and they all agree on a temporary alliance to stop Caster before his monster destroys the city. With Rider leading the vanguard, Saber joins him to give Lancer an opening to use his spears on Caster.|
|14||"The Bloody Battle of Mion River"
"Miongawa Kessen" (未遠川血戦)
|April 7, 2012|
|Saber, Lancer, and Rider fight to stop Caster's demon from reaching the shore. However, it regenerates at an astounding pace, making it difficult to destroy. Kirei and Risei discuss plans to cover up the incident, while Archer and Tokiomi watch the battle aboard Archer's aircraft, the Vimana. Tokiomi pleads with Archer to assist in destroying Caster, but the latter refuses after "sacrificing" four of his weapons to damage the beast. A crowd of bystanders begins to gather along the river and a pair of F-15 jets are caught in the battle while patrolling the area. Berserker appears, takes control of one of the jets, and engages in aerial combat with Archer's Vimana while the other jet is consumed by Caster's demon. Kariya confronts Tokiomi about his treatment of Sakura, and is enraged when Tokiomi simply dismisses his wife and daughters as "rabble". He attacks him as Kirei watches their fight from afar. Uryū, watching from the bank, is sniped by Kiritsugu and dies. Caster senses the death of his Master and vows to fulfill the promise he made to him. Kiritsugu deduces that Caster's demon is an immortal being that will regenerate itself if even a small piece of it is left, hence, it must be destroyed in a single, powerful attack. He reveals that Saber possesses a Noble Phantasm which can achieve this.|
"Ōgon no Kagayaki" (黄金の輝き)
|April 14, 2012|
|As Archer and Berserker continue to battle in the sky, Saber and Rider are forced to retreat from Caster's demon to rethink their strategy. Rider proposes transporting the demon inside of Ionian Hetairoi, where his armies will hold it off as long as they can while Saber and Lancer find a way to finally destroy it. Kiritsugu calls and explains to Waver how they will defeat the demon and tells him to inform Lancer about Saber's Noble Phantasm. Lancer realizes what Kiritsugu means and destroys his Gae Buidhe to allow Saber's wound to heal and fully use her Noble Phantasm. Tokiomi defeats Kariya by burning him with a blast of fire. He falls from the building, and is later found by Kirei, who is on the verge of killing him but decides to heal him instead. Berserker destroys Archer's Vimana, but is drawn by the unveiling of Saber's sword and begins attacking her instead. Lancer and Archer attack him and destroy his jet. With the coast clear, Kiritsugu fires a flare gun to signal to Waver where Rider should transport the demon. With the demon in position, Saber uses her Noble Phantasm Excalibur to finally destroy Caster and the demon while the former has a vision of Jeanne before his death. With the threat over, Rider and Archer discuss whether Saber's life as king was incredible or tragic before both leave, with Rider hoping to duel Archer in the future and Archer now smitten with Saber.|
|16||"The Terminus of Honor"
"Eiyo no Hate" (栄誉の果て)
|April 21, 2012|
|Kayneth visits Risei and asks for his reward for Lancer's role in defeating Caster. Risei agrees to reward Kayneth with a Command Seal, but after receiving it, Kayneth immediately shoots and kills him to ensure that no other Masters can get one. During the battle at the Mion River, Maiya finds Sola-Ui and cuts off the arm bearing her Command Seals, then kidnaps her. Kayneth scolds Lancer for not protecting Sola-Ui and mocks him. Saber and Iri, tipped off by Kiritsugu, arrive at Kayneth's hideout, where Saber and Lancer decide the time is right to finish their duel. Kiritsugu confronts Kayneth and, holding Sola-Ui at gunpoint, gives Kayneth a contract of geas that will prevent Kiritsugu from killing him and Sola-Ui if he uses his last Command Seal to force Lancer to commit suicide. Desperate, Kayneth agrees to the deal, causing Lancer to curse everyone around him, especially Saber, before he dies, impaled on his own lance. But the contract only binds Kiritsugu from harming them personally, and immediately after Maiya shoots Kayneth and Sola-Ui. As Saber ends Kayneth's suffering, she confronts Kiritsugu for the terrible and dishonorable things he would do to win the grail. Kiritsugu counters that there is nothing honorable about chivalry, as all war is hell, and he will do anything, including great evil, to realize his wish to save the world. As Kiritsugu leaves with Maiya, Iri collapses from exhaustion.|
|17||"The Eighth Contract"
"Dai-hachi no Keiyaku" (第八の契約)
|April 28, 2012|
|Kirei discovers Risei's body and informs Tokiomi. Kirei is saddened by his father's death, although Archer suggests that his sadness is due to not having had the chance to kill his father himself. Maiya informs Iri and Saber that Tokiomi wishes to form an alliance with them, and Iri agrees to go to the church to discuss the offer. Before the meeting, Tokiomi visits his wife and Rin, giving his daughter a magus book and some wisdom before leaving. During the meeting, Tokiomi suggests a temporary alliance to defeat the other Masters first and ensure that a representative of the three families, not an outsider, will attain the Grail. Iri agrees, but on the condition that Kirei leaves the city and is no longer involved in the War. Tokiomi complies. As they depart, Iri reveals to Maiya that she is the embodiment of the Holy Grail in human form and will soon die to create the Grail near the end of the war. Maiya promises to protect her until that time comes. Meanwhile, Kirei reveals to Archer that his father's dying act was to leave Kirei the remaining Command Seals, restoring Kirei's ability to contract with a Servant. He also tells him the secret reason behind the war: the Holy Grail can be activated only through the sacrifice of seven Heroic Spirits. Thus, even a victorious Servant must die at the end, which is why Tokiomi is reluctant to use his Command Spells, as he needs at least one to force Archer to commit suicide. Furthermore, Kirei still wants to explore his dark desires, and Archer yearns for a more stimulating master. Later, Kirei meets with Tokiomi, who entrusts him with the guardianship of Rin should anything happen to him, and an Azoth dagger as a symbol of his completed apprenticeship. Kirei stabs Tokiomi in the back with the dagger, saying even his own father and master never really understood him. With Tokiomi dead, Archer and Kirei form a new contract as Master and Servant.|
"Tōi Kioku" (遠い記憶)
|May 5, 2012|
|Years ago, a young Kiritsugu lived on Alimango island in the Philippines with his father Noritaka and his father's assistant, a local girl named Shirley who called him Kerry. Noritaka was conducting research on immortality using plants. Despite being told by the townsfolk to stay away from Noritaka, Shirley is convinced his research will help the world and tells Kiritsugu she hopes he grows up to be great man. But one morning, Kiritsugu's father asks him if he went into his lab, and then tells him not to leave their house. Kiritsugu ignores his father's warning and goes to search for Shirley, only to find her at her house in a frenzy, devouring live chickens. Shirley reveals that she went into Noritaka's lab and use his immortality formula on herself, which turned her into a Dead Apostle vampire with an incessant craving for blood. Shirley begs Kiritsugu to kill her while she is still herself, but he is unable to do it, and she attacks the townsfolk, turning them into Ghouls. As chaos spread across the island, Church Executors and Mages from the Mages Association arrive to stop the outbreak and cover up the incident. Kiritsugu is saved from the Ghouls by a mercenary named Natalia Kaminski. She explains she is there to eliminate the magus responsible for the outbreak, which Kiritsugu realizes is his father. He confronts Noritaka over his work and its consequences, but his father simply shrugs them off as an accident, and tells Kiritsugu he plans to continue his experiments elsewhere. Angered at his father's response, Kiritsugu kills him. Emotionally broken and with nowhere to go, Kiritsugu agrees to escape together with Natalia.|
|19||"Where Justice is Found"
"Seigi no Arika" (正義の在処)
|May 12, 2012|
|After leaving the island, Kiritsugu began living with Natalia, who trained him to become a mercenary like her and travel around the world as a hired gun. Due to his unique magic, Natalia removes several of Kiritsugu's ribs and uses them to create sixty-six magic bullets that have a devastating effect against magi. Natalia and Kiritsugu are assigned to kill Odd Dvorak, a Dead Apostle mage who controls bee familiars that turn their victims into Ghouls. While Natalia boards the plane that Dvorak is taking from Paris, Kiritsugu heads to his destination of New York to kill the mage's associate there. Both Natalia and Kiritsugu successfully eliminate their targets. However, Dvorak was concealing bees in his body which turn all the passengers and crew into ghouls. Natalia manages to get into the cockpit safely, but with the plane filled with ghouls, she asks Kiritsugu to do something for her. He surprises Natalia by saying he already has something planned. As her plane draws closer to New York, Natalia and Kiritsugu talk via radio, reminiscing about the time they spent together and the bond they shared. When her plane is in view, Kiritsugu does what he believes will save more people: to prevent a Ghoul infestation, he blows up the plane with a Stinger, killing all the Ghouls on board and Natalia along with them. Before he pulls the trigger, he tells her he was glad to have her as his mother. As the plane explodes, Natalia is seen smiling. Kiritsugu collapses in grief over losing another loved one.|
|20||"Return of the Assassin"
"Ansatsusha no Kikan" (暗殺者の帰還)
|May 19, 2012|
|Kiritsugu visits an ailing Iri in the storehouse. She gives her husband the scabbard Avalon and asks him to bring their daughter Ilya to see Japan once the War is over. Learning from Maiya that Saber has gone to battle Rider, Kiritsugu assigns Maiya to protect his wife while he goes to assassinate Tokiomi. Meanwhile, Waver heads to the forest where he summoned Rider in order to replenish his mana before Rider's intended fight with Saber, whom he wishes to battle to set her straight on what it means to be a king. Kariya has a nightmare in which Berserker speaks to him before awakening chained in the cellar of the Matō house. To heal Kariya, Zōken forces him to swallow the crest worm that first tasted Sakura's purity. Iri talks with Maiya about the latter's past as a child soldier, and implores her to live her own life after the war. Iri tells Maiya her wish that this Grail War will be the last so that Ilya can live a normal life. At the same time, Kiritsugu arrives at the Thosaka mansion only to discover that Tokiomi is dead. In the interval, Rider attacks Iri and Maiya. Kiritsugu uses a Command Seal to order Saber to return to the storehouse, where she finds Maiya injured and Iri abducted by Rider; she gives chase on her motorcycle. On reaching the storehouse, Kiritsugu finds the dying Maiya, and comforts her in her last moments through his own tears.|
|21||"Knight on Two Wheels"
"Sōrin no Kishi" (双輪の騎士)
|May 26, 2012|
|As Saber chases Rider through the city on her motorcycle, Kiritsugu investigates and concludes that Rider was not responsible for attacking Iri and Maiya. Saber catches up to the real Rider and Waver, and the two Servants duel, resulting in the destruction of Rider's chariot. Meanwhile, concluding that the Matōs were behind his wife's kidnapping, Kiritsugu tortures Kariya's brother Byakuya, who reveals that Kariya was working with Kirei. Kirei made a deal with Kariya to kidnap Iri using Berserker's Noble Phantasm, which allows him to disguise himself as another hero (in this case Rider), in return for the restoration the two Command Seals this consumed and the promise of a duel with Tokiomi at the church. When Kariya leaves, Kirei orders Zōken, who has been hiding and watching them, to show himself. Zōken remarks that he and Kirei are the same in their enjoyment of watching Kariya suffer, before he is driven away by Kirei. Kariya arrives at the church to duel Tokiomi only to find his corpse. Aoi arrives at the church soon after, and on seeing the two of them believes that Kariya is her husband's killer. As Aoi weeps for Tokiomi, she angrily asks Kariya if he is happy now. A confused Kariya attempts to explain the situation and places blame on Tokiomi for his treatment of her and Sakura, but Aoi reprimands him, stating that he doesn't understand her and that he's never loved anyone. Kariya snaps and strangles Aoi. By the time he comes to his senses, he has killed her. As Kariya stumbles out of the church in despair, Archer and Kirei are shown to have been watching from the balcony, enjoying the tragedy as it unfolded.|
|22||"All evil in this world (Angra Mainyu)"
"Konoyo Subete no Aku" (この世全ての悪)
|June 2, 2012|
|Waver returns to his hideout at the Mackenzie's household. The Mackenzies, whom Waver put a spell on them to make them believe he was their grandson, are actually aware he isn't but they enjoyed his and Rider's company. At Caster's lair, Kirei interrogates Iri about Kiritsugu, believing both of them are similar. However, Iri tells him her husband is nothing like him who is empty as Kiritsugu is fighting for the Grail to wish for a world without conflict. Disappointed, Kirei kills Iri and vows to destroy Kiritsugu's dream. Later that night, Rider and Waver sees magical flares from the theater as a sign for a duel with Archer. As Rider summons his horse Bucephalus, Waver decides to use all of his Command Seals to give Rider the power he needs to win and conquer the world as he feels he is no longer worthy to be his Master. Instead, Rider still considers Waver to be his friend and wants him to ride with him for the battle. Kiritsugu and Saber sees the flares as well, knowing it's a trap to gather all of the contestants at the same area. Having sent the flares, Kirei prepares his fight with Kiritsugu while he sends Berserker to deal with Saber and Archer to face off with Rider. Meanwhile, Iri's soul finds herself inside the Holy Grail.|
|23||"The Sea of the Ends"
"Saihate no Umi" (最果ての海)
|June 9, 2012|
|As Kiritsugu and Saber arrive at the theater separately, Saber is attacked by Berserker armed with guns in the underground parking lot. Meanwhile, Rider and Waver encounter Archer at the bridge. After having a drink before their duel, Rider asks Archer to join forces to conquer the world and beyond but Archer politely declines. Elsewhere, Saber manages to destroy Berserker's guns but is startled that he knows the exact length of her sword. She ask for his true identity, but when Berserker removes his mask, she is shocked to find out he is Sir Lancelot, one of her trusted knights. At the same time, a dying Kariya begins hallucinating due to his guilt over Aoi. Rider summons Ionian Hetairoi and he and his army charge at Archer. Archer pulls out his sword Ea and uses his Noble Phantasm Enuma Elish to destroy Rider's army and Ionian Hetairoi, which sends them back to the real world. Rider asks Waver if he would like to become his retainer, which he does, so Rider pulls out Waver from his horse and orders him to live so Waver can tell the tale of his final charge. Rider charges at Archer and is slain by Archer's Ea but not before Archer tells Rider that he respects him as his equal. Archer decides to let Waver go after admiring his loyalty to Rider and departs, after which Waver mourns for Rider. Kiritsugu finally encounters Kirei while his wife's body is placed on the theater's stage.|
|24||"The Last Command Seal"
"Saigo no Reijū" (最後の令呪)
|June 16, 2012|
|With Kiritsugu and Kirei fighting with all of their skills, Saber finally kills Lancelot where they share one last talk together. As both Kiritsugu and Kirei are about to give each other the finishing blow, a black ooze from the Grail's spreads over them. Kiritsugu finds himself in an illusionary world where the Grail, taking the form of his wife Iri, tells him he is worthy to make a wish for the Grail. However, Kiritsugu is shocked that the Grail is evil when it deconstructs his belief of killing the few for the sakes of many and tells him it cannot save the world and end conflict unless all of humanity must die which it wants to do once it is born onto Earth. The Grail attempts to convince Kiritsugu to make his wish by promising he will be together with his family again by taking the form of both Iri and Ilya. However, Kiritsugu rejects the Grail and kills both his wife and child, as his personal happiness is not worth the the cost of the global population. For this, he is cursed by the Grail. Now back in the real world, Kirei scolds Kiritsugu for refusing the Grail and wasting the wish. Kirei pleads Kiritsugu to give the wish to him so that he may find the meaning of his existence, but Kiritsugu kills him without hesitation. Saber soon arrives at the Grail's stage and encounters Archer, who demands that she surrender and devote all of herself to him as his wife. Kiritsugu appears in the middle of their exchange and, to both Saber and Archer's horror, uses both of his remaining Command Seals to force Saber to destroy the Grail using Excalibur.|
|June 23, 2012|
Saber destroys the Grail along with the theater before disappearing. As the smoke clears, Kiritsugu bears witness as the Grail's curse pours from the sky, consuming Archer and rapidly flooding through the city, bringing utter destruction to everything it touches. After the destruction, Kirei awakes and is surprised to see Archer alive and well, though completely naked. Archer reveals that the ooze gave him his new, permanent body and was also the cause of Kirei's resurrection. Realizing the city's destruction was his wish, Kirei begins laughing hysterically at his own lack of humanity. He expresses a strong desire to bring about even more destruction, and Archer agrees to follow him. Meanwhile, Kariya returns to the Matō estate to save Sakura. He sees himself reuniting Sakura with Rin and Aoi, and for the first time in years, they were all happy together. In reality, he never walked out of the pit. He fell down the stairs and was consumed by the Crest worms, Sakura commenting that such was the consequence of disobeying grandfather. As morning falls, Waver asks the Mackenzies to stay with them a while longer as he earns money to travel around the world and find his own path. After presiding over Tokiomi's funeral, Kirei meets Rin and her mother Aoi, who survived but suffered brain damage, not comprehending that her husband is dead and that Sakura is gone. Kirei then gives Rin the Azoth Dagger. Saber relives her final moments on battlefield during her life and remembers Lancelot's final words to her as he expressed his regret for having betrayed her and falling for Guinevere. Saber grieves in the knowing that she doesn't understand anyone, and she weeps for having failed as a king.In the aftermath of the destruction of the Grail, a guilt-ridden Kiritsugu searches for futilely searches for survivors, finding only death and despair. However, after all of his tortuous and fruitless searching, he finds a young boy, (Shirō), the sole survivor. While attempting to find and reunite with his daughter, the Einzbern family refuses to permit him entry. Due to the Grail's curse weakening his body, Kiritsugu is unable to break through their defenses and never sees Illya again. He then decides to live in Fuyuki City with Shirō, whom he adopts. Five years later, Kiritsugu tells Shirō how he once wished to be a hero. Shirō promises his father that he will fulfill that dream for him. The episode ends with him remembering the question Shirley asked him long ago about what he wanted to be when he grew up, to which he had replied, "I want to be a hero".
- Fate/Zero Aniplex USA website
- Fate/Zero Aniplex website (Japanese)
- Fate/Zero Official website (Japanese)
- Fate/Zero Season 1 (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
- Fate/Zero Season 2 (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia