Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End – Season 1 Episode 23 Recap & Review

Conquering The Labyrinth

Episode 23 of Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End begins with Frieren and the other successful First-Class Mage Exam participants arriving at the exam’s second phase location. Upon arriving, Sense praises them for their success in the first phase and ensures that this one will be simple despite the rumors about her and her past tests. 

Sense informs the participants that they’ll be raiding the dungeon behind her called the “Ruins of the King’s Tomb.” To pass, they must reach its deepest floor. Someone questions Sense about the former test-takers who failed her exams. Sense tells him he must persevere through any trials and should ignore the fact that others couldn’t pass. 

Additionally, Sense says she’ll monitor them during their expedition but promises she won’t provide anyone aid. Sense hands everyone an escape golem bottle to assist them in fleeing the dungeon. She says they’ll fail if they use their golems. Sense tells them the golem’s bottles will shatter at dawn and that she doesn’t plan to let any promising mage perish during the exam. 

Denken shares his thoughts about the dungeon and another participant tells him that they shouldn’t be working as a team. Denken tells the male participant there’s no reason for anyone to be enemies during this phase, but the male disagrees and says he’ll be focusing on himself. Many others start entering the dungeon. 

Before Frieren and Fern enter it, Sense tells the two she’ll be accompanying them since she knows they’ll likely complete her test. While the three explore the dungeon, Fern acknowledges Frieren’s knowledge of them. Frieren tells Fern that she spent the majority of her life exploring dungeons with Himmel and the others.

She goes on to explain why Himmel had a fondness for dungeon exploration. This triggers a flashback involving her and her former allies navigating one. In it, Himmel shares dungeon-exploring tips with Eisen, but Eisen finds his tips strange. Himmel acknowledges the fun to be had with exploring dungeons to the fullest.

Frieren notes how they can be life-threatening experiences, to which Eisen agrees. Himmel says he’s willing to accept that truth because he wants to experience a journey where he can raid dungeons, obtain treasure, fight monsters, etc. before saving the world. Himmel entices Frieren to side with him by mentioning a grimoire. 

In the present, Kanne and Lawine enter the dungeon. Denken reflects on how disappointed he is that the other participants didn’t want to tackle the dungeon as a unit. Richter tells him not to worry about it as he feels like he, Laufen, Denken, and the two female participants next to them are the smart ones. 

Denken and his group enter the dungeon. We cut to Frieren observing a chest because she feels a grimoire is inside it. Fern tells Frieren that the chest’s a mimic, but Frieren checks the chest anyway, resulting in the mimic chopping her. While Fern helps Frieren escape, Sense looks at the two, questioning if she made the right decision. 

Meanwhile, Denken and his party explore the dungeon. As they explore, several stone gargoyles awaken and attack Denken and his allies. A fight ensues. While Denken and his allies defeat the gargoyles, one of their teammates gets hurled into a separate room with a spike trap. Denken tries to free her but fails. 

He tells his female ally to break her bottle. After doing so, the golem appears and saves the girl, resulting in her failure. Elsewhere, Frieren gives Fern a tip on how to free her from the mimic’s mouth. Fern complies and saves Frieren. Frieren reveals tidbits about her experiences with mimics.

After using her long-term knowledge to help Fern navigate through the dungeon, Frieren suggests she, Sense, and Fern rest at the burial chamber nearby. While Frieren cuddles the treasure she collected during her exploration with Fern and Sense, Sense and Fern chat briefly about Sense’s views of Fern, her capabilities, and her lack of determination.

While Fern’s accomplished one of her lifelong goals already, she says Frieren’s joy entices her to continue pursuing magic. Elsewhere, we spot Wirbel and his allies exploring the dungeon. Ehre tells Wirbel that someone restrained her and feels they’re about to get ambushed by a few participants. Wirbel and the others get attacked. 

Fortunately, Scharf protects him and Ehre. Wirbel ganders at their pursuers and notices they’re stone variants of them. We cut to Denken and his party battling stone versions of themselves, too. They successfully defeat Laufen’s stone replica and Denken is surprised by its abilities. Denken and his party continue exploring. 

Unfortunately, Denken and his party enter a room and spot a stone replica of Frieren. The episode closes with Frieren’s stone replica menacingly staring at them. 


The Episode Review

After last week’s wholesome outing, we’re back in the driver’s seat regarding the First-Class Mage Exam. This chapter gave us solid intel on the second phase’s rules, proctor, and environment. From its heinous traps to its terrifying enemies, there’s a lot of content jammed into this one to satisfy the masses. On top of providing viewers with stellar fights, this chapter contained compelling humor too. 

For instance, it was humorous seeing Frieren getting gobbled up by the mimic in this chapter. It shows that while she is a powerful and wise mage, her treasure and grimoire-hunting urges can get the better of her at times. Fortunately, she has someone like Fern around to “pull” her out of those “sticky” situations. 

Speaking of Fern, it was great seeing her connect with Sense in this episode. Not only does it allow viewers to reflect on her exceptional growth as a mage, but it gives them an idea of what Sense is like. While her test is certainly a challenging one, Sense herself, is indeed a pacifist, at least from what we’ve seen of her (so far). 

By and large, this was another fantastic episode of Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End and I’m excited to see how Denken and his allies deal with this Frieren replica. 

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You can read our Season 1 Review of Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End here!

 

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