Review by Dominic
I thought I would make life easier on myself by reviewing the second half of this interesting show since it captured my interest, even though there were a couple things that sort of irritated me. To find out what that was, you can listen to our Shootin’ the Shit, episode four.
Picking up on the reigns of where part one left off, our antagonists Shichika and Togame are continuing their journey to reclaim the twelve Klesha Bringers to restore peace to the land, or so they say. The first episode on this set actually starts out pretty grim as we are presented with the first opponent for Shichika: His Own Sister! As we saw in the previous volume, she is one seriously screwed up chick, and it was only a matter of time before these two would be forced to fight.
As you could imagine this is an emotional episode, as Shichika is forced to choose between completing his mission, or sparing his sister, though she is a character that people really shouldn’t feel any sympathy towards, especially with the brutal and emotionless treatment she has given to others.
This episode is only the first of the six, but it does its job of getting the viewer back into the mix of things, and it only gets better from there. If the first set seemed like a setup, this second set is the culmination of that set as more characters get thrown into the story and the plot comes together in a culmination as many characters meet their end, leading to a final episode that more or less ends things on a pleasant note.
A few other characters are introduced in this series including Togame’s “rival”, Princess Denial and her vassal, Emon-Zaemon, who play a larger role in this set as they both become the final antagonists as the series draws to its close.
As a whole, this series starts out slow, but does pick its heels up, and gives the viewer an enjoyable experience. The episodic nature of the series makes character development difficult, but it is made possible by dedicating each episode to a theme or lesson for Shichika, and sometimes Togame.
- What to Protect
- Human Will
Shichika started out as an emotionless weapon that blindly followed Togame's orders, acting as her sword. By facing the variety of opponents in their journey and influence of Togame herself, Shichika gradually grew up as a human being, learning the ways of society and new emotions with each encounter. By the end of the show, Shichika was no longer a brutal killing machine; he had his own purposes and opinions.
As I said in the last review, the character design and the art here really made the show for me. Even characters that died quickly had very distinct personalities and features that left lasting impressions. Speaking of characters dying quickly, I’d have to say the most painful death would have to be that of the ninja Maniwa Pengin. He was the only Maniwa character with enough screen time to care about, and he got killed in a painful and graphic way.
I could go on about this show, but at this point, just watch it for yourself and see what I’m talking about. All in all, I’m glad I purchased the first part from AX as this show went completely under my radar last year.