Top Five Downer Endings in Anime & Manga

Most fans of anime and manga expect a happy ending. The big bad gets defeated and most if not all of our heroes survive. However, ever once in a while, an anime and manga series will shock us with a downer ending. Of course, many of these series generally have dark tones so those endings shouldn’t be shocking. However, most of us are trained to expect a good ending no matter what. A downer ending ranges from sad to tragic. So what are my top 5 favorite downer endings?

5. Lust contemplates her existence (Fullmetal Alchemist)

In episode 35 of Fullmetal Alchemist (2003 series), ‘Reunion of the Fallen,’ Lust begins to question her existence. Where does she come from and what would happen to her when she dies? She sees a man from her past, Lujon. She taught him alchemy to save his village from a mysterious disease. Turns out that the disease was created by Envy. The Homunculi hope that by giving Lujon a fake philosopher’s stone he will search and make a real one for them to steal. When Lujon admits that he loves Lust, she kills him considering him “worthless.” Without his stone, the villagers all die from the disease and Lujon’s wife dies in his arms.

4. Tokyo Ghouls tragic ending

The Anteiku staff are destroyed by the CCG. Touka and Nishiki are forced to abandon their loved ones. Yoshimura is captured by his daughter Eto and will be used as a “donor” for Dr. Kanou’s experiments. Juuzou and Kuroiwa are maimed, Shinohara is left brain dead. Hide goes missing, Kaneki, Amon, Takizawa, Koma, and Irimi are assumed dead. Tsukiyama is comatose. Kaneki is betrayed by two of his allies, Uta and Itori, who take pleasure in Kaneki’s demise.

3. Battle Royale Continues

Battle Royale takes place in a fascist alternate-timeline Japan. The government random chooses high school classes and sends them to a isolated island. Armed with weapons, and under the treat of death they are forced to kill each other until only one remains. This is called “the Program.”After all the death and mayhem, Shuya and Noriko survive. They escape to America, but all of there friends are dead. They are haunted by memories of the battle royale and their relationship become strained. Finally, despite the failure of this edition of the program, the system remains intact. Meaning that future high school students will continue to go through the program.

2. In Devilman Crybaby humanity becomes extinct

The 2018 adaptation of Devilman by Go Nagai, follows Akira Fudo. He becomes a “devilman,” after he makes the demon Amon’s power his own. With this new power, Akira hopes to protect humanity and his love ones. He fails though. He loses everything. His girlfriend Miki is murdered and brutally dismembered by a mob. His best friend turns out to be Satan (Ryo). Akira is killed. Then God destroys Earth. The entire series is dark, but you did think Akira would win at the end.

1. Griffith becomes Femto (Berserk)

In the Berserk, Griffith betrays his Band of the Hawk and Guts. After a year of torture he’s rescued by Guts. Using the Crimson Behelit he summons the Godhand. Transporting everyone to Hell. Griffith sacrifices the Hawks. Guts and Casca remain. As she is attacked by demon Guts tries to save her, but his arm gets caught in a demon teeth. Reborn as the demon Femto, Griffith sexual assaults Casca in front of Guts. Who then cuts off his own arm to try to save Casca. However, he’s dog-piled by more demons, that claw his right eye out. The anime ends here, while the manga continues. Berserk has one of the most depressing endings.

Do you have any anime or manga endings you think belong on this list?

Top 5 Story-Breaker Powers in Anime or Manga

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Top 20 Anime from the 2010’s (Part 1)

I intended to keep this list short at ten, however, I just couldn’t leave out the many top anime from 2010-2019. If the late 80’s and 90’s are known as the greatest era of anime, the 2010’s should be known as the most prolific. With that said, let’s get to the list.


20. Dororo (2019)

Hyakkimaru and Tahomaru clash

Studio: MAPPA | MAL: 8.23 | Genre: Samurai, Historical

Dororo would rank higher if it wasn’t for the dramatic dip in animation quality throughout the series. However, despite that, Dororo remains one of the best anime of the decade. The series focuses on the orphan girl, Dororo and the samurai she befriends Hyakkimaru. The child of the power hungry Lord Daigo Kagemitsu, Hyakkimaru body sacrificed to demons. Born with no limbs, nose, eyes, ears or skin, Hyakkimaru is saved by a doctor. Armed with prosthetic limbs with weapons embedded within them, Dororo and Hyakkimaru, aim to defeat demon to restores his body. Dororo explores whether the sacrifice of the few is ever acceptable if it benefits the many.

Check Out My Review of Dororo Episode 1


19. SSSS.Gridman (2018)

Yuta and the Girdman Alliance
Yuta and the Girdman Alliance

Studio: Trigger | MAL: 7.31 | Genre: Mecha

After the disappointing Darling in the Franxx, I was surprised with SSSS.Gridman. Based on Denkou Choujin Gridman (1993), Gridman follows Yuta Hibiki. A high school freshman who wakes up in the home of his classmate Rikka Takarada. With no memory, Yuta hears a mysterious figure calling to him from an old computer. He’s the only one that can see and hear he figure and the giant Kaiju’s outside. Yuta starts to wonder if he’s going insane. Tasked with the mission giving to him, he merges with Gridman to fight against the Kaiju. SSSS.Gridman is a series with gorgeous animation, an intriguing story and several complex characters. One day I’ll give Darling in the Franxx a second look, but right now of the two SSSS.Gridman is the superior series.

Check Out My Review of SSSS.Gridman Episode 1


18. Tokyo Ghoul (2014)

Ken Kaneki after his surgery

Studio: Pierrot | MAL: 7.93 | Genre: Horror

I rarely watch horror anime, but I heard so much about Tokyo Ghoul I had to give it a try. I wasn’t disappointed. Based on the best-selling manga of the same name, Tokyo Ghoul follows Ken Kaneki as he is forced into the world of ghouls by Rize Kamishiro. Set in an alternate world where ghouls (humanoid beings that eat human flesh) live in secrecy. Half-ghouls can be born or created artificially. They’re usually stronger than pure blooded ghouls. After experimental surgery, Kaneki becomes a hybrid of a ghoul and human. He’s taken in by ghouls that manage the coffee shop “Anteiku”. He must struggle to find out where he fits in a world when the societies of the ghouls and humanity are in conflict.

Check Out My Review of Tokyo Ghoul Episode 1


17. Devilman Crybaby (2018)

Devilman Crybaby, Netflix

Studio: Science SARU | MAL: 7.94 | Genre: Supernatural

If somewhat graphic sex, ultra violence and gore are off putting to you then Devilman Crybaby isn’t for you. However, if you want an anime series that will push your boundaries, Devilman is your best choice. The sensitive Akira Fudou is asked by childhood friend Ryou Asuka to aid him with uncovering devils. To Akira’s shock, Ryou takes him to a Sabbath, a party full of debauchery. During the party, demons possess the party goers including Akira. Merged with the devil Amon, Akira becomes the Devilman.

Check Out My Review of Devilman Crybaby


16. Inuyashiki (2017)

Ichiro Inuyashiki becomes an electromechanical cyborg

Studio: MAPPA | MAL: 7.79 | Genre: Sci-Fi

Generally anime focuses on teenagers as the main protagonists. Inuyashiki takes a departure from this trope focusing on a 58 year old protagonists. Personally, I think that Inuyashiki looks more like an 80 year old. Regardless, he’s going through a tough time. His family doesn’t appreciate him (they seem to hate him), he has back problems and to top things off he learns that he has stomach cancer. With three months left to live, Inuyashiki becomes distraught. While standing in a nearby field he is transformed into a cyborg by mysterious extraterrestrials. Saved from his death sentence, Inuyashiki finds purpose in being a hero, rescuing citizens from the psychopathic Hiro.

Check Out My Review of Inuyashiki Episode 1

Tokyo Ghoul Root A

Tokyo Ghoul Ep 1 -4Episode 01

Faith (Shin Kou)

The world attacks and kills each other. We each try to justify ourselves by saying it’s only right. But there is no reason that allows one to kill somebody. The act of taking a life amounts to… evil.

 

I’m clearly failing as a blogger and an Otaku, having NO idea that the second season of Tokyo Ghoul was out. The second season of Tokyo Ghoul, is dubbed “Tokyo Ghoul Root A“. Apparently, it’s an “anime-only story created and approved by the original manga author (Ishida Sui)”. The episode begins with Hideyoshi riding his bike toward Aogiri’s home base. Meanwhile, Owl faces off against the Ghoul Investigators. Yukinori orders Amon to stay out of the fight, yet he refuses. They use new Quinque, the Arata prototypes.

Toka fights against Ayato and he dominates her, and violently bits off her Kagune. In the battle against Owl, Iwao and Yukinori attempt to use new armor.They state that the armor “is incredible since the gear they had ten years ago would have cost their lives“. Shu repeatedly stabs Noro, then Uta stabs him with his hands holding him in place as Renji kicks off the top of his torso. However, none of their attacks appear to have much effect. Noro leaves as he receives a message on his mobile device, ignoring Renji, Shu and Uta.

Tokyo Ghoul Ep 1 -3While fighting Owl, Yukinori and Iwao push their prototypes, using hidden abilities. The Arata Prototypes begin digging into their flesh, devouring their bodies in exchange for more power. Meanwhile, the fight between Ayato and Toka appears over until Toka calls for her father. Enraged, Ayato attempts to kill her but Kaneki saves her. He begins to face off against Ayato, Kaneki easily bests Ayato in close combat. Noro grabs Ayato, and flees. The aftermath of the battle has resulted in hundreds of casualties from both sides. Kaneki tells Toka he’s joining Aogiri, the episode ends with Kaneki leaving with Aogiri.

The series picks up right after the previously, literally. The problem with this is that a new viewer would be lost without some sort of primer. The fight between Owl and the CCG wasn’t particularly interesting, save the use of the new Arata prototypes. How much power can they gain using them and at what point do they become indistinguishable from the Ghouls they hunt. Noro is an interesting character,his healing ability appears impossible to defeat though I don’t think it will remain that way.

TG1The big dramatic change in this story (compared to the manga), is that Kaneki joins Aogiri. I find Kaneki’s psychological change a little too dramatic. It remains to be scene why he did this, maybe there’s more to his decision. Personally, I prefer the animation from season one. I haven’t been reading the manga (I probably should start), but I’ve been reading that this season of Tokyo Ghoul is missing a lot of the details that the manga provided. Overall, this episode was missing some important details but I give it a few more episodes to provide them.

Other Reviews (Spoilers):

Tokyo Ghoul

Tokyo Ghoul JasonEpisode 11

High Spirits

Jason tortures Ken as his friends find away to free him. Meanwhile, the Dove’s mobilize over one thousand troops to protect the citizens. Mr.Banjo tells Ken to “hang in there” as he wait for an opening to save him. We get some back story on Jason. He was arrested by CCG and subjected to the same torture he’s inflicting on Ken. During his torture he created an alternate personality to protect himself.

DerrtThe CCG and Anteiku face of in a gun battle, as Toka and the other infiltrate their headquarters. The CCG seem to be holding their own, but they are no match for the stronger ghouls. Mr. Amon faces the “Bin Brothers” as Shu, Renji and Uta face an unknown ghoul. Mr. Amon defeats the two S class Bin Brothers as Toka faces Ayato.

124556The CCG continue to advance taking over the Anteiku headquarters. While, on the roof they see the “one eyed owl”. This episode was amazing as always. I really liked the fact that the CCG wasn’t just easily slaughtered by the Anteiku. At the beginning of the series I though that the CCG wouldn’t stand a chance against the Ghouls. They’re still at a disadvantage but they can at least challenge them.

5566Episode 12

Ghoul

Ken still is being tortured by Jason. He “dreams” of Miss Rize and learns to except his ghoul side. As Jason tortures him he tells him that he was an experiment. Ken has a series of flashbacks that help him accept himself. Eventually Jason gives Ken a choice to choose which one his “saviors” he should kill first.

9uuuKen doesn’t want to be responsible for choosing which one lives or dies. He offers himself but Jason kills Haru anyway, then he kills her boyfriend. This is the finally straw as Ken finally attacks Jason. Ken’s hair changes to white he dominates Jason, who can’t manage to hurt him. Ken pins Jason down and apparently eats him.

KenI couldn’t love this episode more, nothing was tied up and I don’t even care. Ken’s transformation was great, I was surprise that his hair color changed (though that doesn’t really matter). His brutal treatment of Jason was much deserved. It appears Ken will be using enemy ghouls as a food source for now on. This episode left me wanting more and I can’t wait to see the next episode.

Tokyo Ghoul

Episode 9

Birdcage

Tokyo9.1Amon remembers being assigned to control division one and how he become partners with Mr. Mado. They first investigate a elderly ghoul named “Applehead”. Amon finds Mr. Mado to be rather strange and questions his methods. Together they question the old woman and Mr. Mado concludes that she ‘couldn’t possibly be a ghoul”. Amon becomes annoyed by Mr. Mado’s investigation style and storms off.

While walking away he sees the old woman walking across the street and helps her. As they walk down a dark alley Amon notices blood leaking out of her luggage, and she attacks. Mr. Mado quickly kills her, we flash forward to the present 49 days after Mr.Mado’s death. Meanwhile, a news report says that crime is increasing in the 11th Ward. We learn that Hinami moves in with Touka, and recovers from her parents death.

Tokyo9Ken discusses Rize “overtaking” him with Miss Itori. She reveals that much isn’t known about Rize, as she “just showed up” one day. She suggests that he go looking for information in the 11th Ward, he considers doing so the following day. While walking home Ken is picked pocketed by a odd person singing. While at work Hide and Ken are discussing his being rob when the conversation turns to Hide’s assumption that there’s a “ghoul organization” in the 20th ward.

He believes that due to “remarkably fewer predatory cases”, he assumed that ghouls were working together. He shifts the conversation to the book he’s reading and leaves. Meanwhile, we are introduced to two new investigators Mr.Hoji and 2nd Grade Takizawa Seido. They will be over seeing the 20th division, while Amon will go to the 11th. Touka wonders where the family of the bird and Mr. Mado are. She flashes back to her family, her younger brother and her father.

Tolyo9.2Hide is sitting drinking when he over hears the “Jason” talking about Rize, and the 20th ward is invaded by ghouls looking for her. I liked this episode (what else is new), I enjoyed that they skipped the personal turmoil that both Amon and Hinami, but still acknowledged it. A lot of new characters were introduced (although I think the new investigators are going to be slaughtered). I assumed that Touka’s brother had died but the fact that he’s still alive will be interesting for the emotional Touka.

tokyo9.3

 

 

 

Episode 10

Aogiri

Tokyo10.1The branch of control is being attacked by a “band of ghouls”, called Aogiri Tree. Mr. Yomo states that the leader of the Aogiri Tree is the “one eyed king”. Meanwhile, at the coffee shop several ghouls arrive looking for Mr. Yoshimura. Their leader asks about Rize and reveals himself to be Banjou Kazuichi from the 11th Ward. He smells the scent of Rize on Ken, and assumes that they are together.

The investigators gather to discuss the attack on the 11th Ward district’s control, no survivors were left. Back at the coffee house Banjou asks what happened to Rize and Ken lies and tell him “shes gone”. Banjou tells Ken “if he sees her again, to tell her to run”. He explains that Aogiri Tree, took over the 11th ward. He is interrupted by Ayato, Touka’s brother.

Tokyo10.4Meanwhile, at the Doves headquarters they prepare for war between ghouls and Humans. During the brief they are interrupted by the strange theft from the previous episode. The theft is introduced as “Shinohara-san’s protege, Suzuya Juuzou”. He apologizes for her lateness, Yamori decides to kidnap Ken and Touka attempts to stop him. He brother interferes and she is defeated easily.

Yamori brutally abuses Ken as Banjou watches helplessly, eventually he interferes saving Ken’s life. Mr. Yoshimura  finds his coffee shop destroyed and with Ken kidnapped and decides to close up shop. Amon chooses one of Mado’s “effects”, Hide is clearly investigating ghouls himself. Everyone gathers at the coffee shop, Mr. Yoshimura states that they will likely never “see Kaneki again”.

Tokyo10.5He states that he was always going to rescue Ken, and that they all must risk their lives to save him. Just as he finishes Shu arrives to help. This episode got me excited for whats to come. I’m eager to see if Mr. Yoshimura will fight, and if he does how strong he is. I wonder how Banjou will react once its revealed that Rize is dead and Ken has he organs. The new investigator (which I thought was a girl), is clearly crazy which should make him a fun character. I can’t wait for the next episode.

Toyko 10.6

Tokyo Ghoul

tkg7Episode 7

Captivity

The censorship is ruining this great series. I’m hoping they release it on blue ray unedited because it getting to be too much.

We start with Hinami’s mother being killed by Mado of the Doves organization. Ken only manages to prevent Hinami from witnessing her mother gruesome murder. Touka is told the news the following day, and isn’t pleased when she is told not to attack the doves. Ken is saddened by his inability to succeed in aiding Hinami’s mother.

bnjlTouka stalks and kills on of two of the Dove inspectors. Mr. Amon and Mr. Mado manage to save the other and attack Touka. She is wearing a mask to conceal her identity and Mado taunt’s her about killing Hinami’s mother, calling her “weak “. Touka takes the bait and attacks him head on. He “reviews” the differences between “types” of ghouls, noting that Touka has high speed but low stamina.

Mado asks Touka for Hinami’s location and she retreats not without being hurt. Ken offers to help she takes him to get a mask. This series plays with your emotions and allegiances. While I never sided with the Doves I did at least feel sorry for the two lower lever inspectors.

ty5t

hhjEpisode 8

Circular

Mr. Mado prepares for a confrontation with Touka and Hinami, using “pieces” of Hinami’s mother to draw Hinami out of hiding.  Hinami finds the bag with her mother in it and screams. Hinami cry’s in Touka’s arms before Mr.Mado appears. Ken simultaneously battles Amon.Mr. Mado uses his weapon on Touka but it gets caught and she’s able to hurt him.

Meanwhile, Ken is having a hard time fighting Amon. Amon and Touka both wonder why their friends had to be killed. Mr. Mado releases Hinami’s mother’s Kagune hurting Touka with them. Ken realizes that he is uniquely positioned to bridge the gap between humans and ghoul. Mr.Mado taunts Hinami about killing her parents, as Ken allows Amon to attack him without defending himself.

hhjjjjjHe aims to “break the chain of grief”, Ken decides to bites Amon and use his kagune. Ken begins to lose control and he begs Amon to run. Meanwhile, Mr. Mado aims to finish Hinami and Touka when she releases her kagune. Together they both defeat and kill Mado, he references the “one eyed ghoul”. Touka removes the glove of Mr. Mado and is shocked to see a ring on his finger. Amon finds Mr.Mado and is devastated.

The mirrored feelings of Amon and Touka is telling of the entire series. Both sides have similar or the same view of each other but fail to see the common ground. Ken felt that he could help but failed to sway Amon until he ironically gave up and decided to fight him. In telling Amon to run away he at least created doubt in Amon’s mind, but all that may be for nothing due Mr. Mado’s death.

hjhj90

Tokyo Ghoul

Episode 5

Scar

G1Ken has a nightmare about the events of the previous episode, he awakes in a cold sweat. The next day he’s working in the coffee shop, Mr.Yoshimura tells him that Kaya will take over and he should see Toka. Toka “sickness” is due to her friend feeding her human food at school the previous day. Hinami is with her and she makes coffee while Ken help Hinami with her reading.

Toka’s friend Yoriko knocks on the door. She is concerned about her and made her something to eat. She see’s Ken and jumps to a conclusion, becoming angry. Toka eats the food even though it will make her sick. Meanwhile, Shu is still obsessed with eating Ken. He figures out a way to accomplish this though its not entirely clear how.

G2While Ken is walking home he hears a commotion and spots Nishiki Nishio being beaten in an alley. He interrupts them and they tell him to basically get lost as they are going to “cannibalize” him. One of them attacks Ken, who effortless defeats them off screen. He returns Nishiki to his home where his girlfriend clearly aware of the fact that he’s a ghoul is waiting.

Ken asks his girlfriend why she’s with him knowing he kills humans. She says “as long as her doesn’t kill her parents or friends, she turns a blind eye”. She then asks Ken “what she can do to help Nishiki”. He response is that if he doesn’t eat flesh he’ll be in trouble. He offers to help, she’s relieved but on her way home she is kidnapped by Shu.

G3Ken finds a rose and a note inviting him to dinner with himself and Kimi. Nishiki arrives at Kens door and is told about Kimi’s abduction. He along with Ken arrive to save her. Shu proclaims that he wants to “eat Kaneki while he eats Kimi”, both Ken and Nishiki are disgusted. He attacks Ken and Nishiki easily dominating them until Toka arrives. Toka and Shu begin to fight, and Ken joins the battle. Shu breaks Ken’s arm then puts his fist into his stomach tasting the blood.

He uses his Kagune to pierce Toka’s abdomen. Shu notices a “ugly” scar on Kimi’s shoulder, Nishiki has a flashback to when his sister is killed and he meets Kimi. It’s revealed that the scar is due to Kimi feeding herself to him after his fight with Ken. Nishiki tries to stop Shu but is brutally beaten and stabbed. Ken and Toka come up with a plan, Toka should eat a piece of Ken’s shoulder. After witnessing this Shu becomes enraged, claiming that Ken “belongs to him”.

G5

 

Episode 6

Cloudburst

G22This episode picks up right where the last one left off. Toka rampages toward Shu striking him with her Kagune. Shu becomes excited at the prospect of fighting Toka at her top level. He tries to take a bite of Kimi to heal himself, but Nishiki stops him long enough to allow Toka to defeat Shu. After Shu dies Nishiki finally reaches Kimi only for Toka to tell him that she must die.

Ken tries to reason with Toka, he fails but when Kimi remarks on “how pretty” Toka’s wings are she leaves wondering “how am I . . . pretty”. Following morning thing seem pretty good. Nishiki begins to work at Anteiku, Hinami makes an outburst over wanting to she her father. We shift to her father, he gives the pliers to Yamori. He attacks Dr.Fueguchi knocking him through a wall.

G23The Doves arrive and engage the Yamori in battle. Hinami continues to be upset about her father and makes up with her mother. Meanwhile, the doves fight Yamori as he effortlessly dodges their attacks. Yamori breaks their weapon and escapes. Dr. Fueguchi however is killed by the Doves. The Doves begin searching for Mrs. Fueguchi and Hinami.

While walking home from the book store, Hinami smells her father. She follows the scent only to find the Doves waiting. Mr. Mado asks if he could “have a moment of Mrs. Fueguchi’s time”. She attacks them with her wings and instructs Hinami to run back to Anteiku. She runs calling for her “Big Brother”, “Big Sister”then finally her Mom.

G25Opinion:

These two episodes featured a lot of good action. The story has been expanded a little bit. Nishiki as a character has evolved, becoming more in sympathetic. His relationship with Kimi is interesting, and at the same time I think that their relationship has inspired both Ken and Toka. Their relationship has also expanded the potential for what human and ghoul relationships could be like.

The battle between Toka and Shu was epic, Toka’s Kagune was cool. The Kagune haven’t been explained much yet, however it seems like her Kagune has some electric aspects to it? In the next episode we are introduced to the “Jason” from the first episode Yamori. He clear is a major player in this series, and considering the fact that “Jason” seems to be a class there’s likely more like him.

Hinami has become the heart of this series so far. Her love of her father was touching and it was sad to know that he died. The Doves were cruel to use a part of his body to attract his wife, but it was a good plan. Mrs. Fueguchi’s winged like Kagune managed to be both elegant and creepy. I don’t know if she’ll die but in this series it’s likely.

G21

 

Toyko Ghoul

Episode 3

Dove

Ohys-Raws-Tokyo-Ghoul-03-MX-1280x720-x264-AAC.mp4_snapshot_06.45_2014.07.18_23.42.07-1024x576We start this episode in a doctors office, as one of the patience’s is leaves he is violently throw back threw the door. The “Jason” we saw in episode one ask for the Doctor replace what he lost during his fight with Rize. At the coffee shop the old ghoul (Mr. Yoshimura) is teaching Ken to make coffee. He explains that Anteiku isn’t “just an ordinary coffee house”, that it’s where ghouls of the 20th ward come together.

Hide appears to have forgotten most of what happen during the “accident”, Toka warns Ken that if Hide finds out about them she’ll kill him. After Hide leaves a woman (Mrs. Fueguchi) and her daughter (Hinami), she asks for Mr. Yoshimura and Toka tells Ken they must watch over them. Toka asks Ken if he has been made aware of the “Box carriers”, he’s clearly ignorant of them.

Tokyo-Ghoul-episode-3-review-mado-cruelWe quickly transition to the “Box Carrier” headquarters. They discuss current developments and are clearly enemies of ghoul society. Mr. Yoshimura teaches Ken about “eating”, and gives him unidentified cubes to curb his hunger. He sends Ken with Mr. Yomo to go “food shopping”, he ask him what they are doing he doesn’t answer. They arrive at red car on the highway, known as a place where people commit suicide.

Meanwhile, a ghoul hunts someone in an alley only to be defeated by Mr.Mado. He asks the ghoul if he has seen the pliers before, he doesn’t know and is killed. Mr. Yoshimura is quickly made aware of the inspectors called “Dove’s”. He tells her to help Ken get a mask the next day. At the mask shop we are introduced to Mr. Uta, a mask maker. Ken asks Toka about the masks she tells him they’re so a inspector doesn’t recognize their faces.

tokyo-ghoul-0301Hinami asks Ken about himself and they bond over Takasuki books. Meanwhile, one of the ghouls that “escaped” the Doves arrives looking for the doctor from earlier. He his taken out by the inspectors that used him as bait. Back at the coffee house Hinami greets everyone and a rather colorful guy enters.

Opinion:

The was a “quiet” episode, meaning that much hasn’t happen in terms of action. The introduction of the “Dove’s” added another layer of complexity to the Tokyo Ghoul universe. It isn’t clear but they seem to have some sort of super ability if they are going to take on the ghouls. However, they mostly defeated low level ghoul’s. I would predict that fighting against stronger foes would require more.

It’s wasn’t made entirely clear what the masks look like. I can’t imagine that wearing a masks like the ones featured in the episode can help the ghouls hide from the doves. Maybe there’s some magic or something that makes them more effective? Well see, though I have seen images of Ken in a mask but its far from discrete.

 

 

Episode 4

Supper

ererreThe colorful guy enters the coffee house and Toka seems displeased. He quickly notices Ken and his aroma, Toka warns Ken that he’s “one of the parasites”. Next Toka is eating lunch at school when her friend feeds her some food. She pretends to enjoy it then throws it up in the bathroom. Meanwhile, Ken is introduced to the gourmet from earlier in the coffee, Tsukiyama Shu.

Shu and Ken talk about his love of books, Ken feels that they are similar. They agree to meet at a coffee shop later. Mr. Yomo offers to train Ken on the days he works, he takes Ken to a bar to meet, Itori. Itori is a pretty red headed female ghoul with a delightful personality. She mentions that there’s another ghoul with just one eye (like Ken). She says that a half human ghoul is superior to a full ghoul.

bghghKen asks her about Rize, she tells him that the “rumor” is that someone killed Rize. Then the next day he asks Shu about Rize, he flashback to a encounter when Rize insults him. He becomes enraged and breaks a glass accidentally cutting Ken. He weirdly takes the bloody napkin and begin sniffing it in the bathroom, comparing it to discovering a star.

We move to Ken showering at Shu’s residence and it’s quickly revealed that Ken has been tricked. Ken is attacked by a “scrapper”, his attacks have no effect. The drugged coffee begins to take effect on Ken and the Scrapper (Taro) begins to choke him. He releases some of his ghoul strength and breaks free. It is reveal to the audience that he is a one eyed ghoul. Shu decides that instead of eating Ken, they feast on Taro instead.

tokyo-ghoul-0408Opinion:

This episode was interesting, the introduction of Tsukiyama Shu was enjoyable. It was pretty obvious that Shu was going to try to eat Ken. How he was going to go about it was a mystery. The party was weird, my first question was how would all those people eat just one person?

Shu as a character was flamboyant and a bit strange. His hungry for gourmet “food” is his most “appealing” quality. Clearly, he’s going to try to eat Ken again but he outed himself as a cannibal during this episode. I’m guessing he won’t be able to trick Ken a second time.

 

 

Tokyo Ghoul

Episode 2

Incubation

rte4tKen is still in disbelief about what has occurred, refusing to consume human flesh as he still considers himself “human”. Toka continues to abuse him and she concludes that he’s nothing more than a half breed. She’s stopped by her “manager”, an older ghoul. He give’s Ken some coffee and Ken notices that it has tastes good.

The older ghoul tells him that it’s the only thing that ghouls and humans can both taste. He then give’s him a package of what I’m assuming is human flesh. When Ken leaves Toka asks why the old ghoul help and he explains that Ken is the student that had Rize organs transplanted into him. He’s unsure whether Ken is transforming into a ghoul.

qwertgvcWhile at home Ken’s stomach begins to growl and he begins to hallucinate losing control. His friend Hide calls during this event and it seems to stop his urges temporarily. The following day Ken returns to school and his friend Hide is there. Hide takes Ken to his house where his brother is making out with some girl. They interrupt them and Ken and Nishiki quickly recognize each other.

While looking for the notes for Ken, Nishiki believes they’re at his house. Hide, Ken and Nishiki all decided to go together. While walking home Nishiki offers to buy Ken and Hide a snack. He purchases one for himself and eats it to the surprise of Ken. Ken notes that Nishiki blends into human society easily. Just as they are walking down a dark alley Nishiki kicks Hide down another alley.

lkhgfNishiki begins choking Ken and accuses him of trying to eat Hide. Ken states that he’s “not like him”, after he pierces Ken’s abdomen leaves him on the floor bloody. Then he heads over to Hide unconscious body appears to Vomit on him? While stepping on Hide head he challenges Ken, threatening to kill Hide. Before Nishiki can kill Hide, Ken remembers his past with Hide goes berserk.

He quickly overwhelms Nishiki almost killing him. Ken’s hunger once again takes over and he prepares to eat Hide. Toka interferes and prevents him from killing him. Ken wakes up at the coffee shop with the old ghoul. He shows him that Hide is alright but confesses to giving Ken human flesh to eat. He tells Ken to “accept what he is”, but Ken begins to cry as he feels all alone. The old man tells him that he’s the only one who is apart of both worlds.

gghOpinion:

It’s only been two episodes and Tokyo Ghoul is already getting better. The overall theme of Ken being a literal lynchpin between the Ghoul and Human worlds appears to be a likely overarching theme for this series. It appears that the coffee introduced may be some used as some sort of figurative or even literal symbol of coming together between the two species, much like Ken.

Ken going berserk was typical for an anime but very enjoyable. Nishiki seems sadistic but I didn’t get the feeling that he wanted to really hurt Hide. It’s going to be interesting to see how Hide fits into this story. Will humans start using “transplants” to get ghoul powers? I’m excited for this series, and I still need to get caught up.

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Tokyo Ghoul

I’ve been hearing about “Tokyo Ghoul” for a couple of weeks now so I decided to give it a try, I wasn’t disappointed. Tokyo Ghoul is an anime series that was adapted around the manga of the same name. Created by Sui Ishida and serialized in Weekly Young Jump. The series was licensed by Funimation  for streaming in the United States.

 

Episode 1

Higeki (Tragedy)

Gh3Tokyo Ghoul opens up with a very gory ( though not explicit ) scene of Rize Kamishiro consuming several dead humans. She is called a “binge eater”, due to her eating behavior. She is interrupted by someone wearing a mask. He claims that  he has orders to “take her alive”. He says that before he does he wishes to take a limb. With pliers in hand he attacks her but she easily evades him and escapes.

We are introduced to Ken Kaneki and his friend Hideyoshi Nagachika nicknamed Hide as they discuss his boring date ideas. We also meet Kirishima Toka who become important later. Hide tries to hit on her as Ken tells him to quit it. A beautiful woman walks into the shop, she has purple hair and glasses.

She pulls out the same book that Ken is reading. He successfully asks her out and she agrees. During their date Ken reveals more about himself, how his parents are both dead. As he walks Rize home they become secluded in an alley way. Ken asks Rize for another date, she agrees that shes “interested” and while giving him a hug she bites him.

GH2She proclaims that she finds him delicious and that she asks him if she “knows” what she likes more than reading. While Ken has utter terror on his face, she says “pulling out all the organs of someone “. He unsurprisingly flees in terror but doesn’t get to far. She throws him through a wall, and tears out some of his organs. While attacking him some of the steel beams fall from the ceiling killing Rize.

The Doctor operating on Ken uses some of Rize organs to save his life. He wakes up  having “lost” his sense of taste. While listen to a television show Ken hears a scientist talking about the eating habits of ghouls. He begins to panic as he eats everything in his house fearing he might be a ghoul. While out in public the following night he begins to have urges to eat humans.

He rushes to his house and sees that his eye is similar to Rize. He attempt to commit suicide but fails. While back out side he smell something sweet. He follows the scent only to find that its a ghoul eating a human and the scent was from the body. As the ghoul offers him a piece, the ghoul is killed by Nishiki. Nishiki attacks Ken and attempts to kill him. Ken is saved by Kirishima who dominates Nishiki in a short fight. Ken beings to panic as his hunger consumes him and Kirishima forces some flesh down his throat.

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Opinion:

It’s way too early to determine whether I like this series or not but I really liked this episode. I find the story very interesting especially considering the fact that Ghouls are familiar to the larger society. The society appears to treat this fact as ordinary and doesn’t seem to be afraid to go out in public (even at night).

I want to see more of the fighting to get a greater sense of this series but it seems to be brutal. The tone of the series is perfect, its dark and intense which is completely appropriate. Clearly ghouls can die, but can regular humans kill them and how. More of the story will obviously be revealed later and at the point of this three episodes were released I have some to get caught up.

 

Review Scores: Tokyo Ghoul

Animation: 8

Story: 8

Characters: 8

Overall: 7.7