Episode 12 – Shadows Cast by Divine Light
The animation in Fire Force is always top tier from the first scene. You could instantly tell that this episode was a step up in quality. Benimaru gets up and quickly knocks his assailant out. He and Joker begin to advance. Benimaru destroys the monks. Joker reveals some information on the operations of the Holy Sol. Suddenly, the masked Holy Sol Shadows surround them. The group is the secret assassin arm of the Holy Sol Temple. The Shadows wear harlequins uniforms and white mouthless masks. It’s a striking look that’s also creepy. Joker used to be a member of this group. In a flashback, we see the abuse Joker suffers at the hands of the Commander. Joker craves strength in a world that he doesn’t understand. He’s obsessed with why the world “sucks” the way it does.
Joker verses the Commander
In the present, Joker faces off against his old Commander. He leaves the rest of the Shadows for Benimaru to handle. The fight is impressive as Benimaru dominates the Shadows. However, they continue to get up and fight. Meanwhile, Joker uses his cards against the Commander’s “zigzag” sword. According to Joker, the sword creates “disruptions in air currents caused by its erratic blade movements.” This causes the flame to become difficult to read. The Commander is lulled into a false sense of security. However, Joker is using the smoke from his cigarettes to induce a hallucination. This episode does depict some stunning visuals. The camera angles become more dramatic, as bright colors dance across the screen. This effect does the Shadows but not Benimaru.
Taking advantage of the moment, Joker severs the hand of the Commander. The blood begins to squirt out of his arm. It’s a dramatic scene as the blood falls like rain. Joker then cuts the Commander into little pieces, leaving him in a pile. Having enacted revenge on his former tormenter, Joker prepares to face a stronger opponent, Captain Burns.