(SPOILER ALERT: This is a full breakdown review for “Uncovered” and discusses events at the end of Volume 5)
I put out a theory that Rooster Teeth most likely wouldn’t bring Cinder Fall back from the dead in my review for “Argus Limited,” the first episode of RWBY: Volume 6. Well, that just proves how even the best of us end up eating our words.
When we last saw Cinder at the end of Volume 5, Raven Branwen had thrown her into the pit beneath the vault of Haven Academy and turned her into ice. However, “Uncovered,” the second episode of Volume 6, which lasts almost seventeen minutes long, begins with the startling revelation that Cinder is alive. She’s seen plunging into water, ice chunks being released from her body. She swims up to the surface of the enclosed little pond and escapes from an opening in the stone wall. When she falls to the ground, a passerby approaches her but then flinches back in terror from the sight of Cinder’s Grimm arm — an inky black, grotesque, clawed appendage.
The next scene shows Team RWBY, Team JNR, Oscar/Ozpin, and Qrow Branwen before they head to Mistral Central Station, where the events preceding “Argus Limited” unfold. They plan to board a train to Argus, where Qrow says they can locate an Atlas Military base where, hopefully, they can find someone who can be persuaded into leading them to Atlas. Ozpin claims that the Relic of Knowledge can answer any question you may ask, although it can’t explain things that have yet to occur, it can only answer three questions every century, and those questions have already been exhausted.
Picking up from the derailing of the train’s rear half in “Argus Limited,” Team RWBY, Oscar, Qrow, and Maria Calavera begin trekking through the snow; Jaune, Nora, and Ren were in the train’s front half, which had remained on the track. A tense discussion about why Ozpin failed to tell everyone that the Relic attracts Grimm and his reasons for hiding Leonardo Lionheart’s traitorous actions from the public leads to Yang pressing him about his mistrust. Once he realizes that Ruby has the Relic, he asks her to give it back. But when he starts to reach out for the Relic, Oscar, as his physical embodiment, struggles to hold him back, warning Ruby that Ozpin fears her learning about his history and that uttering “Jinn” will activate the Relic. When Ruby does this, the spirit known as Jinn is released.
Trivia: the definition of the term “jinn” is “(in Arabian and Muslim mythology) an intelligent spirit of lower rank than the angels, able to appear in human and animal forms and to possess humans.” Jinn reminds me more of a genie, though.
Somewhere in Mistral, Cinder passes by a TV monitor with wanted signs of herself and her accomplices, Mercury Black, Emerald Sustrai, and Hazel Rainart. To cloak her identity she’s now dressed in tan and beige robes; she was the one I had noticed wearing those same clothes in the main theme at the end of “Argus Limited.” She enters a tavern with multiple customers marked by spider tattoos. She pays Lil’ Miss Malachite, a chubby woman with a Southern accent, to search for Team RWBY. After she leaves, one of Malachite’s associates points out that someone else came in for the team a week ago, and Malachite responds that it’s up to them to do a little digging into Cinder’s background.
Finally we cut back to Team RWBY and company as Jinn informs them that she can answer two questions, meaning that Ozpin lied about all three questions being used up. When Ruby asks what he has been hiding from everyone, Jinn whisks everyone into this white space where they’re all separated and a sumptuous castle uncannily reminiscent of Beacon Academy materializes out of an aquamarine fog. She begins the answer as a fairy tale and brings us into the castle, introducing us to a woman with pale blonde hair and light blue eyes. Her name is Salem — apparently, the very same ancient and powerful figure who is now tracking down the Relics for her presumably malevolent goals.
When I wrote about RWBY: Volume 5, I commented on the seeming hints that some sort of past existed between Ozpin and Salem and how great it would be to discover more info. Knowing that this is precisely what is happening, I’m on the edge of my seat for the third episode, “The Lost Fable.” I’m also anxious for further development for Cinder’s story and the return of the rest of the antagonists — Salem, Adam, Mercury, Emerald, Hazel, Tyrian, and Watts.
Windup score: 93/100