Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 24: Recap & Review

Image from Demon Slayer Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 24 of Kanao throwing tea in Tanjiro's face
Kanao throwing tea in Tanjiro’s face

Season 1, Episode 24: ‘Rehabilitation Training’

Finally closer to recovering, Tanjiro, Zenitsu and Inosuke put through “rehabilitation training.” Aoi creates the plan for them. Zenitsu doesn’t start right away. He’s been given the impression from the exhausted look on the faces of Tanjiro and Inosuke that the training is daunting. He is (as expected) petrified by attending the training. However, when the training is explained to him, stretching by girls, then a reflex game and finally a game of tag, Zenitsu is overjoyed by the chance to touch and be touched by pretty girls. After initially finding Zenitsu to be annoying and over the top, I’ve become accustomed to his personality. Zenitsu remains the primary source of comedy in this series, I appreciate that about him.

This episode isn’t all fun and games however. While, Inosuke and Zenitsu abandon training after they fail to capture Kanao, Tanjiro focuses on mastering his breathing. He’s informed that all the Hashira’s and Kanao can use the “Total Concentration Breathing” all day long. Tanjiro begins to increase his training hoping to achieve the feat. He must become able to use his breath to explode special gourds of increasing size, if he’s going to reach the next level. Finally, Tanjiro and Shinobu have a conversation on the roof. She reveals that she’s always angry, after Tanjiro asks why the scent he receives from her is always angry.

Image from Demon Slayer Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 24 of Shinobu's sisters death.
Shinobu’s sisters death

He sister was killed by a demon. Like Tanjiro she had sympathy for demon. Shinobu tried to emulate he sisters smile, but she finds it exhausting to do so. Shinobu decides that she will leave Tanjiro with the mission her sister started, forging relationships with demons. Unfortunately, the new character development seems to suggests that Shinobu will die soon. It think she will find the demon that killed her sister and finally let go of that anger to kill it. This coupled with the fact that Kanao has not so subtly been position as her successor, training under Shinobu and already achieving feats that the other Hashira’s can do. However, I don’t think this will happen this season.

Kyojuro Rengoku on the other hand will likely die this season. In the beginning of the episode, Shinobu asks him where he’s going. He’s likely going to encounter a member of the Upper Ranks. Since Giyu so easily defeat Rui a member of the Lower Ranks, I think we can assume that the higher ranks are significantly stronger. My prediction is that Demon Slayer will leave us with a understanding that Hashira’s aren’t enough and no one is safe. Regardless, Tanjiro, Inosuke and Zenitsu are going to have to get stronger.

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Enen no Shouboutai Episode 10: Recap and Review

In episode 10 of Fire Force, Shinra, Tamaki and Obi are sitting in the car arriving to the meeting at  Amaterasu.
Shinra excited to see Amaterasu

Season 1, Episode 10: ‘The Promise’

The tenth episode of Enen no Shouboutai (Fire Force), the Promise, introduces the Tokyo Imperial Emperor, Raffles III. He calls an emergency conference of all the Captains to discuss the threat of the Evangelist. It’s rare that all the Captains meet. They arrive at the thermal energy plant, Amaterasu. The plant produces all the energy for Tokyo. The conference begins. Along with Leonard Burns (1st), Princess Hibana (5th) and Akitaru Obi (8th), we are introduced to Gustav Honda (2nd), Dr. Giovanni (3rd), Soichiro Hague (4th), Kayoko Huang (6th) and finally Benimaru Shinmon (7th).

Obi notes that the 7th rarely shows up. Shinra states that Shinmon is considered to be the “mightiest Fire Soldier.” The Emperor begins by telling that the Captains that the Evangelist must be stopped as they are traitors. Shinmon is disrespectful when the Emperor suggests that they’re protected by the “Great Sol.” He states that his name is Shinmon Benimaru, which apparently suggests that he’s a “proto-nationalists.” It would have been helpful for Fire Force to explain what a “proto-nationalists” is, why his name is proto-nationalists” and why that’s a problem. Clearly it means that he doesn’t follow orders and he leaves.

In episode 10 of Fire Force, Sho Kusakabe sits on a throne while leaning on a sword.
Sho Kusakabe

Joker arrives and plans to see Shinra again. It is revealed to the Captains that Shinra has the Adolla Burst. This is the same as the flame of Amaterasu. Captain Obi and Company 8, take full responsibility for protecting Shinra. While watching Amaterasu, Joker interrupts him. Joker offers him a “reward,” and tells him that his brother, named Sho Kusakabe is now a Commander of the Knights of the Ashen Flame. Tanaka tells Shinra that he wants him to trust them. At the end of the episode he finally tells them about what Joker told him about his brother. We get a brief look at the White Clad cult and Sho, who has the same smile as Shinra.

This episode largely serves as a recap episode, but there’s enough new information that it doesn’t matter. We are starting to get some clarity on the hierarchy of the Fire Force universe, but I still don’t understand which of the Companies can be trusted. The impression this episode in parts is that Company 3, lead by Dr. Giovanni is a possible threat to Shinra. Company 7, lead by Benimaru Shinmon seem like the most likely to fight against the Church and Government. However, what remains unclear is whether these organizations are evil at all. Joker’s loyalties are interesting. He clearly is obsessed with Shinra, but what he gains from instigating a conflict between brothers is uncertain.


Dr. Stone Episode 10: Recap and Review

A Flimsy Alliance

Kohaku explains to Suika, that Tsukasa is the guy that “killed” Senku. They discuss whether Gen is a good person or not. Senku says that even if he’s not a good person it doesn’t matter. They need him to tell Tsukasa that “Senku is definitely dead.” If he doesn’t they can’t win. Chrome tells Gen that the “Kingdom of Science is more fun.” Gen remembers being freed by Tsukasa. Having meet before, Tsukasa informs Gen that he’s collecting people to be revived. Gen is attacked by an unseen assailant. He manages to survive by using a fake bag of blood. However, he does sustain some injures. Suika goes to investigate. She’s learns that Magma is responsible.

His next target is Kohaku. He assumes her “power” is due to sorcery and now with Gen “dead” she will just be another girl. Kohaku realizes that Magma probably mistook Gen for Senku. Kohaku defeated Magma in a martial arts tournament. The winner of the tourney would become village elder and marry Rui. He isn’t so happy to do so however. Rui being sick isn’t a desirable wife to him, as he doesn’t want to take care of her. He hopes that she dies and suggests that he would “make it look like she drowned herself out of despair.” Overhearing this Kohaku attacks him, winning the tournament. The tournament will be held in a month. Kohaku suggests that if a man from the Kingdom of Science were to win the tournament they could save her.

She suggest that Kinro and Ginro enter the tournament and begins to train them. Chrome decides that he will focus on finding the cure for Ruri. With Gen in terrible shape, he won’t get back to Tsukasa in time. This means that Tsukasa is likely going to come an kill him. The next morning, Gen flees to go back to Tsukasa. At a cave, Gen finally reaches him. Tsukasa has revived several dangerous looking men and women. Kohaku tries to stop him but Senku tells her that he made up his mind when he saw the electricity and was a promised of cola. I don’t think Tsukasa will be fooled by Gen. Overall, Gen deciding to join the Kingdom of Science was better for him. Yes, he was attacked, but he get better food (Ramen), cola and electricity.

Vinland Saga Episode 9: Recap & Review

The Battle of London Bridge

In October 1013, a fleet of Danish and Viking ships arrive in England. They are prepared to take London Bridge. Askeladd’s army is hired by Denmark, hoping to get rich with an easy victory. However, things get more complicated, with the deflection of Thorkell the Tall. Askeladd sends Thorfinn after Thorkell. A battle obsessed “madman,” Thorkell fights against his own countrymen for the challenge. When Floki asks the English for their surrender, Thorkell throws a massive boulder at them. He misses, but shows that he’s a major obstacle. The highlight of this episode is the fight between, Thorfinn and Thorkell. Armed with two daggers, Thorfinn takes on the unarmed Thorkell.

This fight is spectacular. They use of dramatic camera angles is really effective. Thorfinn use of superhuman acrobatics when dodging Thorkell’s massive blows is a sight. Thorkell duels Thorfinn one on one. Thorfinn quickly notices that despite being unarmed, Thorkell could kill him with “one hit.” He notices the weak points of Thorkell, attacking low, he manages to stab Thorkell in the hand. However, this allows Thorkell to grab Thorfinn. Slamming Thorfinn into the ground repeatedly, Askeladd and the fleet retreat. Thorfinn escapes after cutting off two of Thorkell’s fingers. He then jumps into the sea after informing Thorkell that he’s named Thorfinn, son of Thors.

Thorkell is excited to have battled such a warrior. He hopes for another battle on day. Realizing that they can’t spend so much time in one city, King Sweyn plans to move West. He will leave 4000 troops to overtake England, handing over command to the young Prince Canute. Ragnar continues to challenge the Kings wisdom in this regard. Every time he does this I expect the King to have him killed. It seems to be foolish to constantly tell the King that he’s wrong without any consequences. Although maybe the King simply responds well to criticism. Meanwhile, Thorfinn returns to land, with a dislocated shoulder, a sprained right ankle and several broken ribs. As they march on to Wessex, Thorfinn struggles to understand why anyone would love battle so much.


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Enen no Shouboutai Episode 9: Recap and Review

Season 1, Episode 9: The Spreading Malice

In episode 9, Shinra faces off with Lieutenant Rekka. They engage in a battle, resulting in Shinra taking Rekka down with a devastating attack. Using his movement he’s able to take advantage and defeat Rekka. However, Shinra almost exhausts the oxygen in his body. During the battle, Rekka notices that a Infernal insect is reacting to Shinra’s flame. He states that Shinra must be the “third person” that the Evangelist was searching for. He claims that Shinra possesses the “undefiled flame, the Adolla Burst.” Rekka explains that the Evangelists hope to make Earth into a “second Sun.”

Rekka reveals that he will make the children look like “they died in a fire and teach them the teachings of the Evangelists.” Shinra flashes back to his childhood, realizing that the Evangelist may have taken his brother. Rekka begins to over use his flame, preparing to die in the process. Karim uses his abilities to seal Rekka in ice. Suddenly, Rekka is shot through the chest, killing him instantly. Two white cloaked assassins succeed in their mission to silence Rekka. They then turn their sights on the others. Attacking Karim, Li intervenes losing his arm in the process.

Karim tells Shinra to create a “smokescreen,” and uses Tamaki to create a distraction. The two assassins retreat, unwilling to risk their lives further. Karim offers to join forces with Company 8 to expose the Evangelists. Tamaki is suspended by Company 1 and joins Company 8. The conspiracy is getting more interesting. The Evangelists and his followers are clearly an extreme religious organization. It also seems clear that the Evangelist took Shinra’s brother. I hope that the series teases out the investigation into the Evangelist because so far it seems that their rushing.


Dr. Stone Episode 8 & 9, Recap and Review

The weird Suika

Stone Road

The villagers learn that there’s an outsider in the village. They assume that he’s a criminal that was kicked out of the village. Senku and the others prepare to save Ruri from her disease. He plans for the Kingdom of Science to create an antibiotic. Because they can’t tell what her disease is, antibiotics is the best chance to save her. He goes on to explain the two routes to making antibiotics, the biological route and the stone route. The stone route seems to be the more effective one, so they take it. Senku, Kohaku and Chrome begin searching for the elements they need to create the antibiotics.

Ramen

While collecting elements in the river, they meet Suika. She’s a weird girl with a watermelon rind on her head. She offers to help and Senku’s accepts. Once they collect the ingredients for iron the run into a problem they need to reach 1,500 degrees to make iron. By burning wood they can only reach 700 degrees. As much as they try they don’t have the manpower needed to create iron. Suika goes to find what the villagers would need to join them. Senku concludes that food would be the best way to get some of the villagers on board. Using foxtail millet, he creates ramen. Senku plans to “colonize” the village with ramen.


The “mentalist” Asagiri Gen

Let There Be the Light of Science

The Ramen is a hit with the villagers. While feeding the villages, Senku notices a man with half black and half white hair. Kohaku, Kinro and Ginro spring into action. According to Senku the man is Asagiri Gen a “magician who used to write trashy psychology books.” Gen calls himself a “mentalist.” Despite Gen claim that he’s afraid, Kohaku isn’t buying it. Asagiri Gen admits that he’s working for Tsukasa. Gen was sent to confirm that Senku is in fact dead. They acquired iron, Gen claims that whether Senku dies or Tsukasa does is irrelevant. He wins regardless. He dreams of having his own harem. Kohaku doesn’t trust him and thinks that it would be better if he was imprisoned or dead. Senku knows that if he doesn’t return to Tsukasa, then Tsukasa would show up himself.

Let there be light

Senku tells Gen that he’s planning on making a generator. Using the lightning and some iron sand, copper and other items, Senku creates a tower. Using the golden spear of Kinro, they finally get lighting to strike creating a magnet. Senku and the others create a “dual-wield hand-crank generator.” They need two people that are able to work together and have a lot of energy. They turn to Ginro and Kinro. Gen manipulates them into helping. With the electricity they created an “Edison light bulb of Japanese bamboo.” Obviously, Asagiri can’t bet trusted. He may not have any allegiance to Tsukasa but he won’t have any toward Senku.

It think that he’ll try to steal the light bulb that Senku makes. Also with the tension brewing with the Chief and some of the villagers the Kingdom of Science may be in danger. Finally, it seems that Tsukasa has accepted Taiju and Yuzuriha into his empire or at least that’s what Gen says. Tsukasa is no fool and the fact that he sent Gen to confirm the death of Senku suggests that he’s skeptical. I’m enjoying the Senku and the villagers, but I wonder what Tsukasa is up to.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 22: Recap & Review

Master of the Mansion

This episode introduces us to the dynamic and colorful Hashira. There are nine Hashira in all and they answer to Ubuyashiki Kagaya. We already meet Giyu Tomioka, the Water Hashira and Shinobu Kocho, the Insect Hashira. The new Hashira’s are Kyojuro Rengoku the Flame Hashira, Tengen Uzui the Sound Hashira who’s obsessed with flamboyance, Love Hashira Mitsuri Kanroji one of the two female Hashira’s with an unnecessary cleavage window, the constantly crying gentle giant, Stone Hashira, Gyomei Himejima.

Muichiro Tokito the Mist Hashira, he’s rather detached or indifferent. The Snake Hashira, Obanai Iguro the serious one with two colored eyes. Finally there’s Sanemi Shinazugawa, the Wind Hashira. He’s an asshole and I predict I might like him at some point. He’s covered in scars that appear to be self inflicted. He’s the most willing to kill Nezuko and Tanjiro. We finally get to see Ubuyashiki Kagaya the blind master. Generally, blind characters are exceptionally strong, I wonder if he is. Regardless, he’s very mild mannered and kind.

He asks the Hashira’s to accept Nezuko and Tanjiro. Surprisingly, due to the reverence they have for him, several of the Hashira’s continue to disagree. Even after reading the letter from Sakonji Urokodaki (in which we find out that Tanjiro, Giyu and Sakonji will commit suicide if Nezuko attacks a human) Sanemi still doesn’t care. He cuts himself, using his blood to try to get Nezuko to show her true self. He stabs her a few more times and opens the box. Nezuko steps out with an angered look on her face.


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Enen no Shouboutai Episode 8: Recap and Review

Season 1, Episode 8: Infernal Insects

Someone from Company 1 is mysteriously talking in a phone booth to what he called the Evangelist. He says that there may be “some slight obstacles” to overcome. Captain Obi and Hibana go over her research. She tells him that some kind of insect is “introduced into a humans core,” creating Infernals. Hibana and Takehisa deduce that the culprit must be a Special fire soldier. Meanwhile, Shinra, Arthur and the others have breakfast. They head out to fight an Infernal after an alarm sounds. Unlike Company 5, Company 1 is large and well structured. Shinra and Arthur are told to stay put.

Shinra witnesses someone turn a man into an Infernal. He and Arthur gives chase, but run into Lieutenant priests Flam Karim and Hoshimiya Rekka. Clearly this implicates one of them as the culprit. Arthur and Shinra investigate the room of Karim. They find a insect in a bottle in his draw. Karim “catches” them, but tells them that he’s looking for the culprit as well. Apparently there was an incident that resulted in the harming of some children. Meanwhile, Tamaki brings some children to Rekka.

Clearly manipulating Tamaki, he knocks her out. Approaching the children, he tells them that he’s looking for the “pilot light.” He kills the mother of one of the children turning her into an Infernal with an insect. Rekka is sporadic and cruel. Tamaki awakens again and is shocked to find out that Rekka is creating Infernals. He knocks her out a second time. He then uses an insect on a little boy, however, he manages to survive. Rekka is happy to find that he has finally found someone compatible for the pilot light. Rekka approaches the other children as Tamaki call for help, alerting Shinra.

Rekka savagely stomps on Tamaki, before he kills her, Shinra arrives stepping on his face. Tamaki begins to cry, as Shinra asks if she’s alright. I wonder if it’s just me, but this series feels like it rushes through it’s arcs to quickly. It only took two episodes to find the culprit and I wouldn’t be surprise if Rekka was already defeated. As I always say, this series is apparently largely about the larger conspiracy. So far we haven’t had a great deal of information regarding the various factions in the series. I’m hoping that we get some more information on that.


Vinland Saga Episode 8: Recap & Review

Grom, Askeladd’s uncle

Beyond the Edge of the Sea

Askeladd, Thorfinn and the rest of the vikings return home to their village in Jutland. Planning to spend the winter there, they return with the spoils won from the Frank battle. They’re welcomed back with open arms. Thorfinn and Askeladd’s duel is to occur here. As they begin to fight, Thorfinn appears to have an advantage. However, Askeladd being smarter, manipulates Thorfinn into becoming enraged. This results in Askeladd taking control of the duel and winning. Despite Thorfinn maturing he’s still just a child or teen. Regardless, he’s learned how to be violent but not how to fight smartly. He has much to learn before he can kill Askeladd.

Askeladd defeats Thorfinn again

As the men celebrate inside, Thorfinn is on the ship. While there he has a vision of his father. In this vision he’s reminded by his father that “no one has enemies,” and “a true warrior doesn’t need a sword.” It seems that Thorfinn may learn indirectly from his father’s wisdom. How long it takes is really the question. When he speaks to the slave girl, Hordaland, she asks him “if there is anything on the other side of the ocean.” She believes that there’s nothing in the world but wars and slave traders. Thorfinn tells her of Vinland, in this moment we are reminded that Thorfinn despite his brooding nature still has some compassion. After winter passes, the Danish army and Vikings begin their attack on England. Finally, we see some new characters mainly Canute and Thorkell.

Introducing Thorkell

Askeladd continues to prove that he’s more sophisticated than you think. While he’s willing to accept, commit and permit terrible acts, his morality is more complicated. His views on slavery were more nuanced than expected. He understands that everyone’s a slave to something. When talking to a kid about it, he says “It’s terrible. The guy who’s a slave to money holds a whip, and pretends to be the master of the slave he bought with his money. Everyone is a slave to something” Which begs the question “what is Askeladd a slave to?” We’ll probably find out the answer to that question later.


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Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 21: Recap & Review

Against Corps Rules

We finally get the final moments from Rui. Demon Slayer has established that only Muzan Kibutsuji is the true evil. While the demons he creates do monstrous things and must be stopped they were fundamentally human in the first place. Tanjiro is the demon slayer that understands this most, as his sister Nezuko, Tamayo and Yushiro are evidence that demon aren’t evil at their core. Rui’s background is like all the demons from before, tragic. Born in a frail body he could barely walk. Kibutsuji turned him into a demon, giving him a strong body. His father attempted to kill him. Rui killed him and his mother. He realizes that both his parents intended to commit suicide after they murdered him. Unfortunately, Rui is too late to notice that the bond he thought he never had with his parents, was severed by him.

Kibutsuji told him that it was his parent fault that they were killed for not accepting him. It’s an excuse that Rui never really believed but accepted it anyway. He missed his parents so much that his was never going to be satisfied by the fake family. In the present, Rui’s decapitated body falls just short of Nezuko and Tanjiro. Sensing the scent of grief from Rui, Tanjiro reaches out to Rui. Rui accepts that he will go to hell, never seeing his parents again. However, the seem to meet him in the afterlife. They promise to stay together, whether it’s in heaven or hell. Giyu steps on the remains of Rui, telling Tanjiro that he shouldn’t have sympathy for demons. He then realizes that he has encountered Tanjiro and Nezuko before. He does so just in time to stop Shinobu from killing Nezuko. Prepared to defend Nezuko and Tanjiro, he tells Tanjiro to run.

Shinobu is understandably confused by Giyu’s behavior. As Tanjiro is running he’s knocked to the ground by Tsuyuri, the girl from the Final Selection. Tanjiro tells Nezuko to flee, but is knocked out by Tsuyuri, who then pursues Nezuko. Meanwhile, Giyu has captured Shinobu in a head lock. Before things go too far, Kasugai crows arrive and inform everyone that they’re to take Tanjiro and Nezuko into custody. Inosuke, Zenitsu are to be brought to the Butterfly Mansion for further treatment. Finally, when Tanjiro awakens he’s treated to the sight of the Hashiras. I always thought that Tanjiro and Nezuko would come up against the rules of the corps and general prejudice against demons. I highly doubt she will be harmed, but I wonder if Tanjiro will be forced to leave the demon corps all together.


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Vinland Saga Episode 7: Recap & Review

Jabbathe

Normanni

This episode is about showing off the might of the vikings. The King of Dane temporally halts the attacks for the winter, as Askeladd look for jobs raiding. They head to France. Askeladd plans on stealing the treasure from the French. He sends Thorfinn to negotiate on their behalf , giving him the additional goal of bringing him the head of a General. Thorfinn lets the Frankish General know that Askeladd wants to help for half of the spoils. The Frankish General agrees. Once the battle begins, Thorfinn rushes ahead to collect the head of the enemy commander.

Thorfinn’s mastered murder

Askeladd and the rest of the Vikings arrive in grand fashion. Carrying their boats overhead, rushing and yelling. It’s odd liking them considering that their murderous rapist, but I did enjoy their showmanship. One thing about this episode is it’s tone. It feels a little out of place in the very serious series. There wasn’t much character development in this episode, it’s not necessary but the episode did feel odd. Another factor was the French General Jabbathe. He had a frog like appearance and over the top personality. Also his first name is the first two words of “Jabba the Hut,” which is funny but ridiculous. Although now I’m primed to look for clever name puns. Regardless, Askeladd and the Vikings sail into the fort.

Askeladd gloating

The slaughter the men and steal all the treasure. They escape on their ships, as Askeladd gloats about collecting all the spoils. Of course, Thorfinn gets his trophy. Thorfinn will get his duel. While he has mastered the art of killing, I’m not sure he’s ready for Askeladd just yet. The dynamic between Askeladd and Thorfinn is interesting. Despite his claim that he doesn’t care for Thorfinn, I think that Askeladd is as fond of him as he can be. He also seems to be string him along with the promise of a Duel. Is he doing this to make Thorfinn become a better warrior and to get something out of him? Or is there some other motive? This episode was out of place, but I still liked it.


Enen no Shouboutai Episode 7: Recap and Review

Rekka Hoshimiya

Season 1, Episode 7: The investigation of the 1st

In the “Special Fire Grand Cathedral 1,” Captain Leonard Burns has a meeting with his Lieutenant priests, Third-generation pyrokinetic, Huo Yan Li, Third-generation pyrokinetic, Rekka Hoshimiya and Second-generation pyrokinetic, Karim Flam. They discuss the “training exercise” the 5th and 8th Company engaged in. None of them seem to believe that the exercises were real, with Burns stating that “Obi id finally making his move.” It’s clear that the ruse orchestrated by the 8th didn’t work. Meanwhile, the 5th and 8th have their barbecue. Obi and Hibana have a discussion regarding the 5th. She tells him that only she will help, as the 5th is “paired with Haijima.”

Hibana’s fanservice

Hibana claims that someone has been creating Infernals. They determine that this person is likely in the Shinjuku District, which is the jurisdiction of Company 1. They plan on starting an “undercover investigation.” Using a rookie training reassignment system, which allows “crew members in their first year of service to be temporarily assigned to other companies to broaden their experience.” He of course will be sending Shinra and Arthur. Hibana believes that it would appear “unnatural,” if only two men from the 8th are transferred, so she’ll sent some from her company and other companies as well.

The other Maki

Shinra, Arthur, Maki Oze, Takeru Noto (Company 2) and Toru Kishiri (Company 5) arrive at Company 1. Captain Burns offers a tour of the facilities, but Shinra challenges Burns to a sparring match. Captain Burns agrees. Takeru goes first against Rekka. Noto is a third-generation that has a fear of fire. He hoped that by joining the Fire Force, he would get his flames “put out.” He turns fire into missiles to what could be a devastating effect. However, Karim Flam extinguishes the missiles, after Rekka dodges them. Flam states that he uses “Thermo-Acoustic Cooling” that “converts the energy of flames into sound and then converts sound into cold.”

Shinra and his smile

Shinra and Arthur take on Captain Burns together. Arthur’s sword does nothing against Burns arm, despite the fact that his sword could cut steel. He then extinguishes Arthur’s sword. Shinra doesn’t fare much better, his powerful attacks aren’t effective. Captain Burns ends that fight by stomping on the ground hitting Shinra in the stomach with an invisible attack. Rekka takes responsibility for the Arthur and Shinra. Company 1 seems formidable, and I don’t think that the 8th stands much of a chance against them. Burns already knows what Obi’s goal is. The only question is what side is he on.


Dr. Stone Episode 7, Recap and Review

Kohaku stops Kinro and Ginro

Where Two Million Years Have Gone

Kohaku and Senku get to know each other. Kohaku makes it very clear that she isn’t in love with Senku, but admires his lifestyle. Senku tells her that he intends to create a “nation of science,” but needs “allies.” Kohaku gets excited and tells Senku that she knows some people that will be “dependable allies.” Everyday Kohaku carries a heavy jar of water to help her sick sister. After Senku creates a “car” like vehicle they rush to her village. Senku is attacked by Kinro and Ginro. Kohaku intervenes, informing them that Senku “saved her life.” Kohaku prepares to fight the both of them. However, Senku uses soap to make bubbles. Kinro, Kohaku and Ginro are bewildered by the “suspicious floating orbs.” Senku plans to get all of the villagers on his side with science.

Senku planing on winning over the village with science

A new character, Chrome, arrives. He’s (according to him) a “insanely smart, genius sorcerer.” Chrome is clearly fraud, having discovered some elements he uses to trick people into thinking that he has powers. Chrome can understand science on a low level, but he doesn’t have the historical knowledge that Senku possess. Despite the limits of Chrome’s experiments the fact that he capable of experimenting at give Senku hope. As a result of this, Senku believes that Tsukasa will target and kill Chrome. He believes that Chrome needs to join his nation of science. Chrome challenges Senku to a final battle. A battle of arithmetic. Chrome loses handily. Chrome and Senku get excited over “rocks,” as Kohaku puts it. Senku uses mercury and gold dust, to turn Kinro’s spear gold.

Chrome becoming emotional

Kinro who constantly says “rules are rules,” isn’t trusting of Senku. He threatens to kill Senku if he steps into the village. Chrome has also been collecting plants for drugs. He intends to create a drug to cure Ruri. Kohaku arrives to give her sister the hot spring water. Ruri asks her sister to avoid doing anything reckless, as she doesn’t have much time left. Meanwhile, Senku tells Chrome all about the modern world. Chrome becomes emotional over the wiping out of the technological world. Senku tells Chrome that he does believe that together they can recreate the world. Chrome decides that he’s going to help Senku build the nation of science and save Ruri. Senku says that their going to make “antibiotics.”

Senku preparing to create antibodies

The village adds another new dynamic to the story. It’s seems obvious that Senku will help save Ruri, making himself allies with at least most of the village. However, it’s likely that he will still meet resistance among many. This is especially likely to occur if he becomes a rival for anyone in power, as they’re likely to protect their position. The fact that most of the villagers aren’t nearly a “backwards” as I though was surprising. Kinro’s seems to be a likely challenge for Tsukasa if they ever come into conflict. Ginro feels like he would make great friends with Taiju. Speaking of which, Tsukasa, Taiju and Yuzuriha don’t appear in this episode. I’m not complaining but I do think my earlier prediction that Senku may remain separated form the other members of the trio for a while.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 20: Recap & Review

Pretend Family

After the last epic episode, I didn’t expect this one to feature any real action. However, I was wrong. While a fight as dramatic as the one from the previous episode didn’t occur, the battles were impactful if for no other reason showing the power of Giyu and Shinobu. The first shocker of this episode was the survival of Rui. Tanjiro begins to succumb to his wounds and use of two breathing techniques. He loses his vision, can’t move and begins to hear loud ringing in his ears. On top of that Rui managed to decapitate himself before Tanjiro could. I don’t know how I feel about his survival. On it’s face it seem ridiculous, but at the same time it was unexpected. As is always the case, the main protagonist (Tanjiro) was never in danger of dying. Giyu’s appearance was predictable. However, that’s not an issue.

I may be the only swordslady among the pillars who can’t cut a demon’s head off. But anyone who creates poison that can kill demons can be quite amazing

Shinobu

Giyu congratulates Tanjiro for surviving so long. Rui attacks him with his threads, Giyu responds with Water Breathing’s eleventh form (there’s only suppose to be ten) that nullify the threads. He then easily decapitates Rui. Meanwhile, the Daughter runs through the woods, remembering how she ended up in the “pretend family.” She was chased by Demon Hunters, but was saved by Rui under the condition that she would join his “family.” She agrees, mostly out of desperation. The white skin is created by consuming Rui’s blood. She runs into Murata and traps him in a cocoon. The cocoon will fill with acidic fluid that will liquify those ensnared.

Enter, Shinobu. At this point I think she’s my favorite character. She has an odd demeanor. She has a smile that doesn’t feel quite genuine. This mask of kindness, is exposed by her actions and what she says. She offers her “friendship,” to the Daughter. In exchange she has some questions to ask. First, “how many people did she kill.” The Daughter lies and says “five.” Shinobu deduces that it must be at least eighty. She believes that if they are to become friends, the Daughter must be tortured for each of her victims. Understandable, the Daughter isn’t interested. Shinobu accepts that they won’t be friends and uses her Insect Breathing. Because of her physical weakness shes can’t decapitate demons. However, she has discovered wisteria-based poison that can kill demons. Shinobu also appears to have a lot of speed as well .

This episode was great. It does show that the twelve aren’t all powerful, but Tanjiro isn’t at there level yet. However, the twelve may not be ranked in a normal manner. I still think Rui’s ranking as “lower five” is odd. It’s implies that there are demons below him and Tanjiro almost beat him. What I mean is that the type of abilities they posses may make the match up different and they’re ranked based on more than just strength. We are also introduced to a new way to kill demons, wisteria poison. It makes perfect sense. I love the introduction of a new dynamic personality in Shinobu. I expect the next few episodes to focus on healing and furthering the story, which I’m looking forward to.


Reviews of the Other Episodes

Enen no Shouboutai Episode 6: Recap and Review

Season 1, Episode 6: The Spark of Promise

This fight was underwhelming. Compared to the previous episode, I expected this one to surpass the action presented. While I understand that this series is trying to focus on the characters (which I’ll get into later), I think you can do this while having great action. In this episode, Hibana reminds Iris what caused her to lose her faith. When they were children at the orphanage, they witnessed the nun engulfed in flames. While this occurred, Hibana’s third-generation powers manifested. Shinra attacks her but she uses her “heat syncope,” on him again. Heat syncope is a type of “heat illness.” Hibana uses it to overheat her opponents, causing them to become lightheaded.

Despite this, Shinra is able to stand. She then creates a flaming Sakura tree. The pedals from this tree burn with they come in contact with skin. Shinra still manages to stand his ground however. He attacks her, punching her and knocking her out. Hibana recalls her past. Her time at the orphanage and how she manage to become a Captain so she could study fire. When she awakens she’s had a change of heart, no longer willing to be the opposition. This episode is effective in making Hibana a far more sympathetic character than she first appeared. Witnessing the death of her sisters in the orphanage, she suffers from survivors guilt.

This results in her rage, abandoning her faith for science. Her sudden change seems a bit premature to me. While I don’t expect her personality to change, it seems like a over simplistic reason for her to change. The villain becoming an ally or anti-hero happens often in anime, but I feel that Fire Force should be more realistic about it. Hibana seems to have also fallen in love with Shinra, which also seem premature. I know it will be played for laughs and I’m not offend by it, but why does she like him? Finally, it seems like her and Company 5’s behavior will be ignored and they will get away with their bed behavior. Would Obi with his high morals tolerate this? What would it say about him if he did? Questions aside, I’m still interested in the larger conspiracy.


Vinland Saga Episode 6: Recap & Review

Askeladd “saves” Thorfinn

The Journey Begins

Thorfinn appears to have unofficially joined the mercenary band, lead by Askeladd. Viking are explained. Largely, Danes from Denmark they were pirates or thieves. Their goal was to live in England. Naturally war broke out. Askeladd and the others arrive at bloody shore, littered with corpses. Askeladd offers the services of his men. They strike a deal, Askeladd men for women, treasure, food and five pounds of gold. As they continue to talk, they’re attacked. Many of Askeladd’s men are killed, as Thorfinn watches. He draws his dagger, but is attacked. Askeladd kills his assailant (stabbing Thorfinn in the process). It’s a small wound. He claims that “he didn’t know Thorfinn was still alive.”

The woman is devastated to see Thorfinn’s behavior

Thorfinn finally get his first kill. We are shown a series of battles as Thorfinn gains his experience. It’s brutal. It feel wrong somehow. Knowing that his father didn’t want this for him, made it feel tragic. As he ages he become more and more proficient at killing. Losing more and more of his innocence with each kill. Thorfinn is chased by men with dogs and manages to survive. He’s then found by a mother and daughter passed out by a river. They nurse him back to health. The mother hides Thorfinn, seemingly believing he’s a replacement for he dead son. Knowing this series, I could anticipate that these women were not going to have a happy ending.

The new “feral” Thorfinn

Life for most men are terrible, for women almost hopeless. Thorfinn was sent to scout. He knows whats going to happen to all of the villagers. Thorfinn had change. He looks more feral or rabid. We still get to see a glimpse of his remaining humanity. How long can he hold on to it. Vinland Saga is becoming a must see series, it’s not a very cheerful one. However, having watched Attack on Titan, I am certain that they will find some moments of happiness to balance out the dreariness. I believe that Askeladd wants to see Thorfinn survive. He fully intended to save Thorfinn, but he refuses to do so directly.

Dr. Stone Episode 6, Recap and Review

Senku, Taiju and Yuzuriha

Two Nations of the Stone World

We continue with the flashbacks, as Senku explains how he found Taiju. He speculates that aliens may have been responsible, a foreign military or a new virus. The only thing that he’s sure of is that whatever turn humans to stone also did so to swallows. He concludes that an “outside force” is responsible for his, we know that its the nitric acid. Senku has to experiment before he learns that its not as simple as pouring the acid on stone. He remembers that E=MC squared, meaning that you can create energy from nothing. He tries “everything” on the sparrows. Meanwhile, Senku awakens in the present. Senku sends Taiju and Yuzuriha to “infiltrate” Tsukasa’s “army.” Senku plans to create an “revolutionary army” to counter Tsukasa’s. They only way Senku thinks he can do this is by finding the mystery people and get them on his side.

Tsukasa vs Kohaku

However, if they meet Tsukasa first it may not work. Senku, Taiju and Yuzuriha separate to being their plans, with the expectation that they won’t see each other for months or even years. Finally, Tsukasa encounters the young woman from the last episode. She attacks him, showing get fighting skills. Tsukasa assumes that Taiju revived her, however, he deduces that she’s probably a child from a “primitive people.” He also concludes that they have no science (as she refers to sorcery) and he could rule or kill them if he wanted to. He decides that he really needs to get to the cave before Senku and the others. He knocks the girl down and cuts a nearby tree.It falls on her creating a large dust cloud. Senku see it and begins to run to the area. The girl is pinned under the tree but it does seem like her life’s in danger. Senku makes her choose between him, “gambling and blowing up the tree or a longer method.” She says she can wait.

Senku’s pulley system

He creates a pulley system and lifts the tree off her. She is amazed. Introducing herself as Kohaku and telling Senku shes fond of him now. Dr. Stone continues to add new potential conflicts and intriguing narratives simultaneously. In this episode they introduce a more primitive group that has been freed potential from alternate means. They have procreated and are possibly anti-science.” It’s possible that Senku will have to deal with the pro-science but pro-violence that Tsukasa believes in and deal with an anti-science community. I don’t think Tsukasa will fall for the spying from Taiju and Yuzuriha, he’s too smart for that. I wonder if this series would separate the trio for a year (in the series timeline), normally I would say know. However, with this series I’m not sure.

Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 19: Recap & Review

The bond between Tanjiro and Nezuko has already been established a close. However, due to her being a demon and staying in the wood box she can be forgotten. Tanjiro manages to escape terrible damage from Rui’s thread, only getting a scarred on the face. Meanwhile, Inosuke is impressed with Giyu abilities. Giyu is annoyed by Inosuke and ties him up in a tree. Shinobu injects Zenitsu with an antidote, while other Demon Slayers arrives to free the others. Tanjiro is finally cornered by Rui’s web of threads, Nezuko jumps out of the box. She saves Tanjiro, but is severely wounded.

This event stuns Rui, who claims that he wants that kind of relationship. His pretend sister, becomes insecure. She asks “what about me,” he cuts her into pieces. She begs for a second chance, he tells her to kill the other Demon Slayers on the mountain. Rui tells Tanjiro that because he’s so moved by their bond, he will let Tanjiro live if he gives him Nezuko. Obviously, this isn’t going to work. Tanjiro refuses and tells Rui that he’ll kill him first. Rui finally reveals that he’s the member of the Twelve Moon. His eye says “lower five,” which is an odd way of to number between one and twelve. We still don’t know a lot about the Twelve Moon’s, but it seems that maybe the numbering isn’t quite straight forward. Regardless, he simply takes Nezuko. She slashes him with her claws.

None of this seems to bother Rui. He tethers Nezuko in his threads, cutting into her limbs as punishment. She falls to sleep in order to heal herself. Meanwhile, Tanjiro uses the Final Form of his Water Style. He’s able to cut the threads now and creates a water dragon. Realizing the threat that Tanjiro possess, Rui uses his Blood Art to strengthen his threads. We get a flashback of Tanjiro’s family, mainly his father. His father was frail and was able to dance to pray to the God of Fire. His father told him that he was able to dance because he was using “special breathing techniques.” Tanjiro transforms his water dragon into a fire one. He now able to cut the more enhanced threads.


Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba Episode 18: Recap & Review


Tanjiro moves closer to Rui, who finally moves into striking range. He accepts that he will likely die from their encounter. Nezuko is awakened by a vision of her mother asking her to save her brother. Nezuko uses her Blood Art: Blood Ignite, burning the blood on the threads. The fire travels along the threads, destroying the webs that Rui created. As Tanjiro says that “the bond between he and Nezuko can’t be severed,” his sword with Nezuko blood on it severs Rui’s head. My review won’t give this episode any justice. We’re talking about anime here. The animation and the music created a experience that gave me chills. To say I was hyped would be an understatement. If you can watch this episode, you won’t regret it.

Vinland Saga Episode 5: Recap & Review

Askeladd’s men rape and pillage a village

Episode 5, The Troll’s Son

It’s my understanding that this episode of Vinland Saga wasn’t adapted from the manga series of the same name. This can sometimes backfire, but in capable hands can be a seamless addition to series. As predicted, Thorfinn is still enraged and dead set on getting revenge. He’s also saddened by his fathers death. A bundle of conflicting emotions, Thorfinn is determined to kill Askeladd. He has failed to learn the entire lesson his father wanted to teach. Violence isn’t any way to live one’s life. It’s my belief that he will live a life as a warrior then he will learn what his father taught him, but only after experiencing life ruled by violence.

Ylva crying

Askeladd and his Vikings, rape and pillage a village. There is no since of regret, guilt or even blood-lust from Askeladd. He largely, muted in his emotions. While, Thors was a good man, he didn’t have much time to be a hero. He went from violent killer to pacific living at the end of the world in a quite village. Are there any heroes in this series? Most people might assume that Thorfinn must become one. Will he? So far it seems that for the time being he’s going to become a single minded killer. While, Askeladd isn’t a good guy by any stretch, but apparently he won’t kill children. That’s the only reason Thorfinn remains alive. Twice he challenges Askeladd to a duel, and of course he loses. His second duel sees him take a step forward in his fighting ability.

Thorfinn promising to kill Askeladd

Askeladd is a complicated man. I think he regrets that Thors is dead, but NOT that he killed him. It might be a thin distinction but a significant one. When Ylva learns of her fathers death she quickly pretends that it doesn’t really matter. This muted reaction from her was clearly a front. I could almost feel her sadness and was waiting for her to finally collapse into that sadness. It’s hard to tell if Thorfinn immaturity will continue or will he grow out of it. Finally, will his family ever be told that he’s survived. I don’t think there’s any form of mail, so he would probably have to go back. My best prediction is he will return when he’s grown, in the meantime he’s off to the battlefield.

Dr. Stone Episode 5, Recap and Review

Senku “death”

Stone World The Beginning

Dr. Stone is a series that plays with our expectation. Initially, characters are placed in archetypal positions. Senku, the cold hearted genius, Taiju the dumb brute, Yuzuriha the damsel and Tsukasa the villain. However, all four types have been challenged. While they behave as their typing suggest, there are moments when the deviate from expectation. When Senku “sacrifices” himself for Yuzuriha, he proves that he isn’t so cold hearted. Taiju uses his intellect to devise a plan that requires him to assume a bias that Tsukasa has, regarding the dynamic between, Yuzuriha and Taiju. Tsukasa is very much the villain, however, he’s not nearly as simple as that role suggests.

Senku breaks free

His intellect rivals Senku (even if the later is still smarter) and he’s not without compassion. Finally, there’s Yuzuriha, who I was afraid would be relegated as simple the “damsel in distress.” In this episode she takes a small step towards being more relevant. She figures out that Senku wanted to provoke Tsukasa into hitting him in the neck. Together she and Taiju are able to deduce that Senku isn’t dead, but used some petrification on his neck. They heal him with revival fluid. This proves that not only are they not useless without Senku’s intellect, but as a trio they are formidable. Each with have their strengths. The trio is strongest when they work together.

Senku building a home

The later half of the episode shows how Senku was freed from the stone and how he survived. Senku spends a great deal of time trying to acquire fire. While under the watchful eye of three condescending monkeys that think he’s stupid. The montage is informative and funny. Time will tell how long it takes for Tsukasa to learn that Senku survived, but it would be in the best interests for the trio to lay low for now. They have to find the other survivors and determine if they’re friends or foe. I’m still not certain that Tsukasa will remain the main villain though. I think they might have to join forces against some other threat.