Thursday, March 2, 2017

RWBY: Qrow and JNPR

I've mentioned some of this before but I felt the need to expand on it. A look into how Qrow behaves and how he views the team.


When we're first introduced to Qrow he's in a bar watching the tournament. Strangely it's not the RWBY match he sees but JNPR. He's not impressed with them making a disapproving noise but otherwise not commenting.

I think that we fans sometimes forget or forgive Qrow for being harsh because he's such a great character. But if you rewatch volume 3 you can definitely see what Tai means when he called Qrow a jerk. The first thing he's says to Pyrrha is an insult about her team.

Pyrrha Nikkos: Thank you professor Ozpin, but I would have never made it this far without my teammates.

Qrow Branwen: Personally I think it's the other way around.

Think about it for a moment, this is how Qrow makes a first impression on the girl their going to be asking to help them out. What he says also doesn't make sense given what we saw of the team match.

Pyrrha: She took on more than one opponent at a time and blocked the hit meant for Nora but she didn't take anyone out of the fight.

Ren: Got hit with Noah 's electrical attack but he kept the sniper busy then made her chose another target. Then he warned the others that Nora was the next target.

Nora: The powerhouse of the team that dealt the most damage and finished the match. Never seen getting hit except with Noah 's attack which only charged her semblance.

Jaune: Maybe Qrow could tell Jaune was the least skilled out there but keep in mind he still was able to hold his own against a more experienced Huntsman in training. He technically got hit once blocking an attack which made his shield smack him due to the impact. He shook it off, lead his team well and helped Pyrrha block the attack meant for Nora.

Ren, Nora AND Pyrrha all were a part of the infamous "team meeting" in the middle of the fight after Jaune was trying to end the match. So that one would also be on her. Despite that Jaune still lead them well communicating what they were supposed to do. Which was far better than team SSSN all just doing their own thing and trying to get Neptune to help them. (I love Sun but Qrow was right, that was a mess. Not just because Neptune feared the water.) The doubles fight was originally going to be Nora and Pyrrha but Qrow is implying all three of them had Pyrrha carrying their weight on the team.

Sure Qrow could mean in general but he's not around JNPR long enough to make that judgement. He seems to be basing his statement on one fight they were in that he witnessed.

Qrow also remains jerky when they go to the vault with his sarcastic remarks that would hardly put Pyrrha at ease. "She is smart" and his comment about cramming Amber's aura into Pyrrha come to mind. Again this is someone their trying to convince to help them and he's not making it any easily. Qrow does want her to at least consider it because he's the one that gives a reluctant Ozpin the nod to get on with it in his office.

Not to say Qrow doesn't feel bad about Pyrrha dying, you can hear it in his voice when he confirms she's dead to Ruby. But this is the point where I start to speculate what he has up his sleeve. During his talk with Ruby he mentions that with Ozpin gone he has to pick up where he left off. We later learn in volume 4 that he doesn't actually have a plan for what to do at Haven other than seeing the headmaster. Tai gives Qrow a dirty look as he leaves the room making me think he suspected Qrow would try to use his daughter in some scheme. When Ruby asked what happened to her Tai made an excuse to not answer. He didn't want her to get more involved.

Qrow makes a point to tell Ruby that Minstrel is their only lead after she asks what she can do to help. He knew she would go and waits to follow. He says in volume 4 Episode 8 that she has a target painted on her back. So Jaune suggesting Qrow was using her as bait really isn't that farfetched. Qrow doesn't get mad at the accusation and seems to backpedal. Sure his semblance is one reason he kept his distance but I don't think Jaune was completely wrong. Qrow wanted Ruby to take this trip despite being noticed for her status as a SEW. Why isn't too clear at the moment.

One thing that has bugged me is how JNR got in contact with Ruby in the first place since communications are down. Nora and Ren have no where to go but Jaune could go home (where ever that is.) I wonder if Qrow planned for them to go with Ruby. I think we've seen enough evidence through volume 4 that supports the idea that Ruby travelling by herself would be disastrous at this stage. She has trouble reading a map, has no realistic idea how long the mission would be and needs the back up he doesn't think he can easily supply.

Ironwood put Qrow in charge of evacuation, he's the one that found Ruby and Jaune might have contacted Glynda before he called Weiss. (*1) Jaune had Pyrrha's possessions melded into his armor, shield and sword in volume 4. The only person we know that went to the tower is Qrow because that's where he found Ruby. It's not unreasonable to think Qrow gave the metal to JNR to deliver the news. He'd know they'd want closure and were close to Ruby so I could see him giving them the address in Patch. Telling them to visit in whatever time period to let Ruby recover. From there Ruby would tell them her plan and they would go with her. No one would suspect he was guiding them.

Okay that ends my speculation but I was taken aback by the campfire scene and how gentle Qrow was. Sure he still has a righteousness (*2) to what happens with Pyrrha but his demeanor isn't as rough as it was in the vault. By this point Qrow has been watching them long enough to see how much JNR care for Ruby. These are the same three kids he didn't think much of in volume 3 but their the ones keeping her company and fighting with her. In truth Qrow didn't have to tell them anything except Tyrian being sent after Ruby because of the SEW power. Yet he did making sure they knew the full story about Pyrrha.

He also makes sure Jaune knows he was trying to keep them all safe. I suppose you could say he's trying to save face but I think Qrow was being sincere. I also got this vibe that Qrow was trying to win over all of them but especially Jaune. Probably because he's the most distrustful and maybe because Qrow does feel some guilt. I've seen it theorized that this might also be due to him seeing a lot of himself in this kid. Some say that Qrow had deeper feelings for Summer, others believe she was his partner. Maybe a combo of the two and if any of it is true it's definitely a solid connection to the Pyrrah/Jaune situation.

I'm not sure if the Summer link plays a part but we already have one allusion to the two being similar. When Tai, Oobleck and Port discuss Qrow entering Beacon. Tai used Qrow's ignorance of school uniforms to trick him into wearing a skirt. Jaune wore a dress to the dance to make Pyrrha feel better. Both acted confident about it. There's definitely something building with them that I believe we're see more of. Nora and Ren just kind of go with the flow once they know the truth. Neither seem mad at him but other than trying to help him they don't seem as invested in Qrow. At this stage there's not much I can say about how he sees them or how they see him.

Jaune might be mad at Qrow but I was surprised by the amount of responses I read (*3) thinking he'd abandon Qrow to die. (*4) I'd like to think there would be more build up than a simple argument in one episode if that were the case. But no, Jaune makes a point in being the one to help Ruby carry Qrow (with the bad luck semblance) and is the one that puts himself in danger when the Grimm rushes towards Qrow. He still seems to hold some resentment although it fades away when he expresses concern. The wrist grab has been a subject for some debate as to what it meant.

Was Qrow hallucinating and thinking it was Tai? I don't think so just because it feels like their building something up with these two. The only time we saw  him hallucinate was when he seemed to be unconscious. While Qrow was out of it for awhile that wasn't built upon. He looks right at Jaune when he does it. Was he trying to say he was sorry? Thanking him for saving his life? Worried they'd die? I think it might be a combo of all of that.

*1 A guess but considering he was trying to contact her before and Ozpin lists her as someone to get it seems logical. Jaune didn't know how far away Weiss was and only seemed to be calling out of desperation so maybe Glynda and the others were too far off.

*2 I'm curious how he knows Jaune was there much less heard Pyrrha. Did Jaune tell him then or when Beacon fell? Qrow doesn't take into consideration what Jaune is saying though. Ozpin and the others were forcing Pyrrha into a corner forbidding her to openly confide in anyone except them. They basically told her "become the maiden or evil is going to win."

What kind of choice is that especially for someone with a history of being unable to stop herself from helping others? This is the same girl that at a word from Weiss pinned Jaune to a locker despite her seeing him as the potential friend she always wanted. I've seen it theorized that Pyrrha was chosen because she would be easier to control than other options.

*3 I admit I visited more sites towards the entire of this volume to see what others thought. Despite not liking all the dramas I love theories. It's a weakness.

*4 The same character that dealt with Cardin Winchester tormenting him for who knows how long and choosing to risk his own life to save him. I also never got the idea some had about Cinder redeeming herself.

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