The Day I Gave up on Being Aldebaran
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In this theory will be introduced a dead character who ONLY appears in the SECONDARY STORIES of Re:Zero and it’s not known when and if those’ll ever be animated. Most likely this won’t be spoiler in any way for the main story.
About that we suggest that you give a look to oir other analysis “Who is Stride Vollachia?”
To find out how the spoiler tags work, please check the instructions in the section “The Gospel“.
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Stride, the former Archbishop of Pride, has been the first to talk about external observers, who, from above, spectate the world to satisfy themselves and enjoy the drama, as if in a theatrical play. This appears as a breach of the fourth wall, because apart from the metaphorical meaning, we’re the only true observers of Re:Zero. Tappei gives us clues again, scattering them throughout the novel, probably trying to make them go unnoticed. Yet once again, in the second opening of Re:Zero we see another character showing signs of breaking the fourth wall, looking straight at the camera: Aldebaran.
A character surrounded by a great shroud of mystery, and probably the most suspected for the position of current Archbishop of Pride, still we think he is probably only a candidate. Let’s collect all the pieces:
In the Ayamatsu IF Subaru becomes the Archbishop of Pride, but from the dialogue between Petelgeuse and Subaru in arc 3 we already know that the seat of Pride is vacant at the moment. The main characteristic of this IF is precisely that it is the route in which Subaru dies endless times in order to achieve his goal, again, again and again, always ready to do it all over again. From here we deduce that Subaru is a candidate for Pride, but even without acquiring its authority, he still has the very useful power that is return by death. So it would not be too strange if another candidate for the same role, like Aldebaran, had a similar power, while probably limited in its functions, as is to be understood both in arc 5, in the fight against Capella and later on when he succeeds to communicate directly to Regulus’s Communication Mirror (it only happens in the Light Novel); his power also comes to light in the secondary story “The Day I Gave up on Being a Following Star”.
This is the crux of the matter: Aldebaran means “the follower” in reference to the constellation of the Pleiades (which the Japanese call Subaru), therefore we get “The Day I Gave Up Being Aldebaran”, where “Aldebaran” is obviously not his real name, but what was given to him with the title of Archbishop. In fact, all Archbishops have the name of a star, but we know that, unlike Subaru, Aldebaran is not a normal person’s name in Japan, it cannot be his actual birth name, but still, because it is the name of a star, it must have been another summoned person from our world to have brought it in the world of Re:Zero. Moreover we notice that he gets upset when he is called Aldebaran in arc 3, when an angry Priscilla calls him by his full name he replies “I already told you not to call me by that name”, actually getting furious at Priscilla. Even the author himself usually refers to him as “Al”. If he really is, or has been, an archbishop, it makes perfect sense for Aldebaran to have been extremely shocked when he discovered that Rem was still alive after the Witch Cult attacked her village and, coincidentally, shortly after, she fell victim to the Archbishop of Gluttony who had been guided there by the Gospel, unlike Regulus who explicitly said he happened to be there by accident.
Similarly, in the story “Sunlight on the water”, we know that Aldebaran has a close encounter with the Witch, of which, just like Subaru, he gives off the smell, but he cannot speak, reacting with a snap of anger when Priscilla makes her shadow disappear in front of him.
Priscilla herself is an interesting character whom we discussed in the theory “Archbishop of Pride, Priscilla Barielle!“. Not only, according to the calculations, Stride was her uncle, but the suspicion that she could be, like Aldebaran, involved in the “Pride” question is rather motivated: at the beginning of the story “The Day I Gave up on Being a Following Star”, the loyalty of Aldebaran, who became her knight for just a few days, was far from obvious: here he decides at first to betray her by allying himself with her husband who was plotting to use her as a pawn to gain power as she ascended to the throne, the knight’s priority was always to achieve “his goal”. Yet at a certain point he decided, without knowing why, to remain faithful to her, making a choice that Priscilla herself would call wise. At the end of the story Aldebaran confesses that he does not know the reason for his loyalty to Priscilla, describing her words as full of power and immediately noticing how that girl’s charm has an almost magical aura…
The chapter ends with Priscilla’s declaration “…This world was designed to operate in the way that works best for me.”
This might be the moment Aldebaran gave up his title of Archbishop, and that would explain why Priscilla knows Aldebaran’s full name and uses it in arc 3 for the purpose of offending the knight.
However, we think that she might be more likely to, perhaps unknowingly, possess the authority of Pride.