The romance anime, The Apothecary Diaries is here with another Episode and this times it’s poisonous. Here’s the apothecary diaries review
As we continue with the garden party at the royal palace from the previous episode. We discover rivalries among the ladies-in-waiting and learn about the complicated history of the imperial family. Meanwhile, Maomao encounters a problem while taste-testing for Lady Gyokuyou.
Throughout this week’s episode, Maomao endeavors to learn how to navigate the infighting and petty squabbles. You guessed it, among the servants at the garden party while staying warm. The viewer receives details about some of the recently introduced chief concubines as Maomao interacts with the servants of each. These minor clashes in personalities highlight the complexity of social structures. Even when there seems to be none at first glance. These moments of agitation also allow Maomao to have a little fun at the expense of her fellow servants. Even injecting humor into the proceedings and preventing the episode from becoming too self-absorbed.
During the garden party, Maomao continues to witness her growing popularity as several prominent individuals gift her with hairpins, expressing their favor towards her. Among these, Lady Lihua, whom she had previously saved, presents her with one. While it’s gratifying to be recognized, Episode 6 of The Apothecary Diaries review highlights the potential issues arising from such favor. The series points out that Lady Gyokuyô, Maomao’s mistress, may not appreciate others displaying such fondness towards her servant. These observations further emphasize the complexities of navigating social propriety and interactions within a space where different classes coexist.
The food is served. Which means it’s time for Maomao to perform her duties as Lady Gyokuyô’s food taster. As usual, Maomao makes insightful observations about the food, the staff, and the nobility’s appetites while approving each item for her lady.
During the taste-testing session, Maomao observes Lady Lishu, the consort who holds the least favor with the emperor. She starts making a face as she tries to consume the fish. A prior scene hinted at Lady Lishu’s selective eating habits. But as the episode unfolds, it becomes evident that her reluctance to eat fish stems from a deeper and more intriguing reason.
Yûki’s skilled voice work enhances the strength of these keen deductions. Maomao’s sharp intelligence is conveyed with just the right touch of amusement as she observes and learns more than most of us would in such moments. The festivities take a sudden stop when Maomao uncovers that one dish is poisoned.
The suspicious food situation raises questions, especially about who might be behind the poison. Maomao asks Jinshi to bring Lady Lishu and her food taster for further investigation.
Despite having previously explained that Maomao experimented on herself, attempting to build up tolerance to various poisons. Episode 6 of the anime adaptation, The Apothecary Diaries review reveals that she actively enjoys being poisoned. Despite promptly removing the substance from her system due to the public setting, we witness that Maomao would have relished letting the poison course through her, imagining herself collapsed on the ground in some kind of pain-induced ecstasy. While it seems intended to be humorous, it doesn’t quite hit the mark. The oddness of the desire itself and its timing, as everyone around her starts to panic, make this moment feel awkwardly placed, at best.
In the final sequence, Maomao unravels the real target of the poison and explains how she figured it out. This scene is shaped by the observations she made during the food tasting, cleverly connecting everything in a cohesive narrative. Maomao also criticizes another less-than-diligent servant, emphasizing that the servant’s lack of awareness could have jeopardized her lady’s life. While she doesn’t criticize this servant as harshly as she has others in the past, she doesn’t hold back, addressing the situation and providing clear instructions on how it should be improved.
The full expression of Maomao’s feelings is achieved not only through the voice work but also through outstanding animation and cinematography. Brilliant use of camera angles and lighting enhances the scene, effectively conveying the cold and hard tone of Maomao’s delivery. I mean again the colour palette in The Apothecary Diaries used is immaculate.
They always keep giving us The Apothecary Diaries episodes at a great pace, and they always feel too short, making the wait for the next one feel long! We’ll have to wait until November 19th to see more of the colorful scenes, awesome music, and interesting story that the show treats us to every week. It’s good to know that the anime will have at least 24 episodes. What do you think will happen at the garden party in episode seven? What do you think of this romance anime? Share your thoughts below!
High-ranking courtesan Fengxian
Jinshi is 24 years old