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Ao no Exorcist – 03 »« Ao no Exorcist – 01

Ao no Exorcist – 02

OP Sequence

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「虚無界の門」 (Gehena Gēto)
“Gehenna Gate”

Anime beating manga in terms of an adaptation is rare, but A-1 pulled through a thousand times over. After constant disappointment over a multitude of terrible adaptations, I don’t take it lightly when one as good as this just strolls by. The dynamic of the father son relationship felt much more realistic and relatable due to the added exposition of flashbacks, a longer struggle, and naturally, just by it being animated. As a result, the story had actual impact, and by the end, I almost shed a tear when Rin did. Despite having already read the first chapter and knowing what to expect, the emotion totally caught me off-guard, so cheers to A-1 for a fantastic job in actually knowing how to direct scenes. The choice of a soft piano piece during the unleashing of the sword might have seemed odd at first, but considering the scene followed to Shirou’s death, it was perfect. But seriously, Fujiwara Keiji? Stop dying as awesome characters. Not cool.

Being able to build upon “rules” already given by angel and demon lore could have been bland since it’s so often used, but similar to zombies being animated in Highschool of the Dead, it’s a fresh sight. This holds true especially with some wicked animation to support it, as shown in the chaotic battles of this episode. I’m so used to demon takeover, holy water, and summoning symbols from Supernatural (TV series) that seeing it happen in Ao felt like second nature. Demonic possession is definitely one of the more sadistic things demons are capable of doing, but it’s a peculiar feeling seeing the exact same rules apply (Satan’s power being too much for a human, human able to take back control).

The obvious development here would be Rin for finally accepting who he is, finding out which father really mattered, and acquiring the hatred to kill the one that doesn’t. The irony here, as hilariously pointed out by Mephisto Pheles (Kamiya Hiroshi), is a demon becoming an Exorcist to kill his own father, Satan nonetheless. I guess that’s one I haven’t I heard before. With such an incredibly well-done setup, I’m extremely psyched for the meat of the story where he actually trains to become an Exorcist. Seems like it’ll be a school setting, similar to Soul Eater, with a gigantic cast of characters (here are your females), and… Yukio. Someone’s pissed.



April 25, 2011 at 1:49 am
  • April 25, 2011 at 1:56 amTheFadingMoon

    This episode was amazing. I could feel the emotion and did anyone get a little freaked out at the possessed father? It wasn’t so much as a scary surprise as it felt more like “woahh”

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:02 amShadiic

    I really can’t get out of my head how Mephisto’s eyes seems to bulge as he was laughing his head off. I was really scared to go into this ep as I knew how it was going to play out and with ep 1 fleshing out Rin’s character and this one showing the bonds between them even more.

    Yukio next week. Showing us how badass he is.

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:10 amLOL

    i almost cried over this man! second fav of this season (next to hanasaku iroha of course) :P

    • April 25, 2011 at 10:48 pmShirt

      I had to wipe the tears away before my sis saw me. I couldn’t hold them back after seeing Fujimoto’s death. I’ve seen that sight before. Not cool. :’<

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:19 amClick

    Man, I knew what was coming and that final scene still hit me like a brick. My eyes actually got pretty damn watery, especially with the soft piano touch.

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:28 amKarasuGummi

    Is it me or does the city look very similar to Death City?

    • April 25, 2011 at 3:08 amIronicTales

      It does bear a resemblance with the island thing and nothing surrounding it (Almost)

    • April 25, 2011 at 3:13 amKiiragi

      That type of design is pretty common in fantasy worlds. As if there weren’t enough relations to FMA, the filler episode with the cat burglar in the first adaptation took place in a similarly designed city… if memory serves correct (haven’t seen it in six years).

      • April 25, 2011 at 8:38 amArmman

        Your memory does serve you right and that was exactly what I was thinking when I saw it. I am glad someone else thought that besides me.

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:35 amanishuma

    I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready, I’m ready

    For some Mephisto………and Shiemi <3.

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:37 amSalmon

    I agree whole-heartedly about the great use of soft piano music in the end. I was actually crying…! I am really looking forward to the next episode.

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:43 amNakkiNyan

    I like how it is progressing slow enough to actually tell the story yet fast enough to not bore the audience to death.

  • April 25, 2011 at 3:16 amnekomi

    Now it seems like the series is really starting ;)
    This episode was so packed with story but overall none of it seemed rushed at all.
    Amaaaaaazing second episode. Expectations getting higher and higher and higher~

  • April 25, 2011 at 3:20 am7

    Wow, hopefully they don’t fuck the series up by filling it up with fillers later on.

  • April 25, 2011 at 3:23 amanishuma

    I forgot to mention how awesome it is that Uverworld’s doing the op ;p

  • April 25, 2011 at 3:31 amDdadain

    Best episode this season (this year) yet~


  • April 25, 2011 at 3:41 amKagekyuubi

    Must have been building it up from having watched so many emotion-packed episodes lately but I actually shed a few tears during the death scene and I’m basically inhuman by tvtrope’s tearjerker standards.

    • April 25, 2011 at 4:04 amKiiragi

      Naw dude, well directed + excellent voice acting = tearjerker

      • April 25, 2011 at 6:29 amKagekyuubi

        You make a compelling argument. Still have to stand by the fact that I cried more than I would have normally though.

  • April 25, 2011 at 4:49 amewok40k

    now with death city, erm, exorcist academy I am sold totally… and a gun-totin brother with a grudge? hell yeah! and we will get females, so much for romance absence…

  • April 25, 2011 at 6:33 amBlue

    I smiled when you mentioned Supernatural. When I first learned about the premise for Ao I though ‘Two brothers, one with powers, exorcisms, mostly dead family… Hmm, where have I see this before?’ But Supernatural is a guilty pleasure of mine and it was the similarities that drew me to Ao in the first place so I have no reason to complain. :)

    • April 25, 2011 at 8:13 amtaiakun

      Lol same here! Supernatural is my favourite TV series of all time (and if I have to rank my favourite show ever, including anime, it would probably be in the top 3).

      I can’t help but feel that this show has inspired by Supernatural haha. From the similarities you mentioned, to the way demons were exorcised (i.e. black smoke flowing out of the mouth of people), priests using guns and weapons they stored in a church, the father trying to protect his son even though he is possessed by a demon etc. But I’m assuming that this is as close to Supernatural as we are going to get. The school part does seem reminiscent of Soul Eater :)

  • April 25, 2011 at 8:28 amFOA

    oh great, another huge ass spoiler episode, thx for spoiling everything A-1 Pictures, you damn shitheads.

    • April 25, 2011 at 8:29 amFOA

      i wanted to say “huge ass spoiler in the OP -_~

      • April 25, 2011 at 10:08 amNice Holystone

        That’s nothing really new for OP(s). They’re suppose to portray what’s going to happen in the current arc.

  • April 25, 2011 at 8:47 amSecsuey

    Awesome episode even thought I knew what was going to happend

  • April 25, 2011 at 9:27 amRasone0104

    well this is one of the top anime for me this seasons. Honestly this one is good, it has a soul eater borderline d grayman ish feel to it. The only real thing i find dissapointing is the direction this series will eventually go. Seeing as there is only like 20 ish manga chapters I find it hard to believe that they wont put in several fillers and eventually an original anime ending, but seeing as how they made this episode awesome I wouldnt be that much dissapointed for an originla one.

  • April 25, 2011 at 9:35 amRyan

    great great show and really can get better.

    “is a demon becoming an Exorcist to kill his own father, Satan nonetheless. I guess that’s one I haven’t I heard before.”

    well not so far off of other stories that have vampires hunting their own kind or werewolves, (or hybrids), etc.

  • April 25, 2011 at 9:35 amrochichan

    I’m starting to get obssesed with this show. They really did do a good job in adding more plot. I also liked how they showed Fujimoto’s gang fighting, displaying what type of exorcists are there. That was pretty cool.

    Started bawling when Rin cried. So sad. ;___;

    Can’t wait for next ep!

  • April 25, 2011 at 9:41 amDmonHiro

    I don’t get it… so far, this show has done nothing amazing, yet people are throwing around the “it’s a masterpiece” after only 2 episode. This is nothing that hasn’t been done 100 times before.

    • April 25, 2011 at 10:07 amNice Holystone

      I think it’s the presentation done by A-1 Pictures that has people especially ecstatic. The manga was already a great series; adding in the spectacular animation quality and soundtrack and etc. is enough to make the show amazing.
      Also, please do list the shows that have done this before so that I may give them a watch-

    • April 25, 2011 at 3:01 pmkazukifafner

      It’s got nothing to do with originality. It has everything to do with execution. This two episode introduction arc was superbly executed. The production values were amazing and the pacing was smooth and the acting was powerful.

      Honestly, I enjoyed these two episodes more than the manga’s first chapter.

    • April 25, 2011 at 4:46 pmSecsuey

      It is the amazing job that A-1 picture have done that make the difference and maybe cus some RC readers like my are tired of the F****** moe and fan service in every show instead of a good story.

      Seriously, it has been a while since I saw well placed fillers

    • April 25, 2011 at 5:28 pmDjisas

      You are not alone, i almost shed a tear yawning…
      Decent animation, ok music, overused cast of voice actor, overused main V.A., predictable and unexciting…
      It pisses me of overrated anime…

      • April 25, 2011 at 7:39 pmSecsuey

        Seriously Djisas if this is overaterd please illuminate my ignorance with some animes that you find “well rated”.
        because last season the only anime I liked was Madoka.

      • April 25, 2011 at 11:23 pmCharles (^_^)

        lol im sick of people like you didnt your mom ever teach you if you dont have anything nice to post dont post it at all

        also loved this episode and the way the story is told so far count me intrested :D

      • April 26, 2011 at 1:10 amAznSoulBoy

        Haters gonna hate eh….

      • April 26, 2011 at 7:13 amDjisas

        I have probably watched more anime than all three of you combined, i know well when im watching a masterpiece and when im watching something more “normal”…

        I just fail to see how this anime is so “brilliant”, my personal opinion as a veteran…

        Posting a list of better anime would be to bothersome and would require to much space…

        Anyway im still going to watch it in the end, just hope to be at least entertained…

        Im a hatter of everything popular and mainstream…

        I hope this illuminates “my” hatters…

      • April 26, 2011 at 7:39 amZwei

        i kinda agree w/ Djisas up there, its not that this anime is not entertaining, but anime viewers nowadays are just so narrow minded and easy to please. the anime industry is deteriorating you know, only a number of shows stand out, and this series does show promise but nothing that stand out.

        though in the end its a matter of enjoyment and preferences of watchers since people now cannot differentiate “masterpiece” from “average” >.<

      • April 26, 2011 at 8:27 amSomrandom1

        No one cares how many anime you watched since a) you can claim the number of anime that you watched without ever having to back it up, b) no one cares how many you watched, c) having watched a lot of something doesn’t automatically make you a connoisseur of something, d) learn to spell something as common as hater…seriously…

      • April 26, 2011 at 9:01 amDjisas

        I do watch Bleach actually, since i started to watch it from day 1 i wont drop it and i actually like it, i dont care about manga, filers, popularity or anything…
        I tried watch one piece and didnt like, Naruto’s gone to far for me to even think it exists…

        I dont claim i have watched many anime, i have the numbers to prove it, just look for me on MAL… I thought id do one a few months ago to keep a physical record cause the ANN lists cant be shared so easily…

        Like i said experience tells me what good and whats great, according to my point of view…
        A different point of view is always a reason for hate, so simple are ppl…

        Like some wise person said somewhere, haters are gonna hate… There i think i got it right this time…

        And by the way my line of thought here applies to Kaminomi, both seasons: Average and im starting to find Itou Kanae annoying and overused…
        Just my point of view dont start flaming because of this…

      • April 26, 2011 at 9:06 amanishuma

        I’m sick of people like you Charles complaining about people that don’t completely love everything YOU like.

        Didn’t your mom ever tell you to stop being so annoying when she dropped you?

      • April 26, 2011 at 11:19 amSecsuey

        I am sorry but this is just a waste of time, seeing that you like bleach I think we got far too diferent opinion of what a good anime is.

      • April 26, 2011 at 12:25 pmDjisas

        Here we go again…
        Yes i watch Bleach, i explained why when it first started it was actually “refreshing” to me, the character design, the concept, even the music, that was back in 2004, i still watch it every week, i have time to watch a couple shounen titles…

        The problem is 7 years latter, shounen anime is so mainstream but so popular at the same time because they are easy to understand, kids can watch them, but its this simplicity and the following of a similar formula every time that it starts to get boring, EX: Ao exorcist or Kaminomi, even bakuman…

        What we need is more anime like Shiki, a bold character design, a bold story, it was completely refreshing to watch…
        Madoka turned the anime community upside down and reinvented the genre…
        Level E was fantastic, unpredictable some times, and it kept trolling everyone, they even trolled the master troll…
        Wandering son, it was only a wast the small length, it was a great story with great characters, it was something new…

        I could keep ranting forever but ill stop just here…

        Just to finish I AM not saying THIS anime is bad, what i am saying is that its following a basic formula without reinventing the genre thus its not refreshing, reusing all the popular Voice actors from the last “popular” anime doesnt help either…
        Im just waiting to see if this anime will do something fantastic down the road and desrv its rating or end up another overrated anime…

      • April 26, 2011 at 2:41 pmkazukifafner

        So because the first three who replied to you disagreed with your opinion, you claim that you have probably watched more anime than the lot of them? Sounds pretty elitist if you ask me.

      • April 26, 2011 at 7:06 pmRyouichi

        To be honest, it’s extremely difficult to be original anymore without making an ounce of sense, as most everything has been done in some form of media.

        Also, your previous statement that you had numbers to back up your claim but then related it to your MAL which YOU update is kind of idiotic. Maybe if there was some sort of online tracker ergo xfire or steam in the way of videogames, people would be more inclined to take your words at face value, but it’s up to you whether or not you bogusly update every anime on the list as watched.

        Also, I do agree that while this is enjoyable, it’s not something that I’m ecstatic about. At the very least this show is better than all the trash fanservice shows that are contaminating anime.

    • April 26, 2011 at 8:28 amOh please

      Hating everything popular or mainstream doesn’t make your opinion more valid.

      Neither does it elevates you to a level above everyone who happens to enjoy what’s popular.

      Just another guy who believes that hating stuffs like Naruto or Bleach actually makes himself oh so special.

    • April 29, 2011 at 3:17 amkenji

      hahaha! this whole conversation is kinda funny. I’ll just watch the shows that entertains me, it doesn’t matter if it was done a billion times or what, as long as it’s good (in my taste). To each his own, as they say. We all have preferences or opinions of what’s good or not, if it’s a masterpiece or trash. whatever. But I’ll do say, A-1 Pictures did a great job here, very much unlike what they’re doing in Fairy Tail.

  • April 25, 2011 at 10:18 amdarkblue

    I actually teared up, man. Spring is turning out reallly well.

  • April 25, 2011 at 10:50 amZero

    Haters: “This ain’t animu! Where’re the chicks? F*** this sh**!

    Kiiragi: “Here’s your females!”

    Show Spoiler ▼

  • April 25, 2011 at 11:49 amren

    Wow it’s only the second episode and I’m already totally impressed with the series.

  • April 25, 2011 at 12:25 pmBossun

    Some people have been talking about them making an anime only ending like they did with FMA because the manga recently started its publication. I don’t think they will. FMA was 50 episodes straight; there was no break between seasons. Isn’t Ao no Exorcist supposed to only be 2-cour initially? meaning they’d have time to wait for the manga to keep going before they make more episodes

  • April 25, 2011 at 1:14 pmP0NCH

    Its a bummer when Fujiwara Keiji’s characters get killed off so early on T_T
    He is sooooo freaking cool, especially as the cool father-like figure.

    Anywhoozle, this A-1 is doing a phenomenal job and I can’t wait for more; another great episode!

  • April 25, 2011 at 1:32 pmZeruFenrir

    Only thing I noticed they left out is the reason Rin is special for having a human body.
    In the first chapter of the manga, he expressly points out that Rin’s body is the only one that could serve as a true vessel for him, allowing Satan to enter the realm of humans permanently.

    Other then that, this adaptation is looking pretty good, wasn’t a fan of the OP though.

  • April 25, 2011 at 2:09 pmmegalith

    So far I’m impressed with the quality of this show. Following episodes will determine if this show is really made of gold.

  • April 25, 2011 at 3:25 pmZilla

    Looks like they might have what it takes to adapt this, even when taking liberties with the source material. I agree with others, this worked better than the first chapter. Here’s hoping they follow FMA in adaptation quality, although I feel like this is gonna turn into another FMA vs FMA:B war here.

    Also, yeah, I agree with ZeruFenrir up there about the body thing. As for the op: meh, it’ll probably grow on me, but I have a feeling they’ll make the second one better.

  • April 26, 2011 at 2:20 pmn0216332

    mephisto ¬_¬ now im just waiting for andariel, duriel, diablo and baal. hmm, im not liking what i see from the preview.. but we will see :( i hope he dont have to fight his brother :(

  • April 27, 2011 at 7:30 amNorwegium

    That last scene really did it for me, and the soundtrack hit the softspot. Couldn’t help but shed a tear or two.

  • April 27, 2011 at 9:16 amMarik Bentusi

    Agreed with pretty much everything you said. The father-son relationship definitely had more impact and I was moved by the scene as well… until Mephisto went bonkers. Well, it did end the episode on a high note.

    I had some serious doubts after finding out how little material they’re working with, but it seemed I worried over nothing. Not only are the anime-only parts woven into the story (unlike the usual scheme of following the plot, then padding with A Day In The Limelight episodes that have no impact on the story whatsoever), they greatly improve the effects of the already well-done manga. Like I (and you) mentioned, the father-son relationship was much better portrayed here and it’s rare for me to develop that much of an emotional connection to fictional characters, much less within 2 episodes.

    I’ve really missed an anime like this after FMA ended. Glad that Blue Exorcist is here – and here to stay.

  • April 27, 2011 at 6:39 pmcoolchic415

    omg!!!! i love this episode so sad, but sooooo good at the same time ahhh..cant get enough of it. Does anyone know the piano song near the end?

  • April 27, 2011 at 7:42 pmsealouse

    Hmm the animation reminds me of Hellsing. That’s good. I could tell the death was really emotional. The main voice actor is so good at portraying that. Such a refreshing show.

  • April 28, 2011 at 6:44 pmJun-01

    The paradox reminds me of the “Castlevania – Symphony of the Night” game. Alucard, half-vampire and son of Dracula, also fights against his evil father.

  • April 30, 2011 at 2:38 pmhaitechan

    That was… unexpected. I was going to pass on this one, because I’m a little tired of shounen but I ended liking Rin’s character a lot. In fact, I started reading the manga after that and my only worry is that this turns into a filler hell but it has potential. Sure, it’s not the most revolutionary anime EVER but it reminds me of Soul Eater and I liked that one.

  • May 1, 2011 at 3:19 pmValerie

    Mephisto has the same seiyuu as Izaya from Durarara!! Ha..

  • May 2, 2011 at 6:32 pmZ!

    The voiceacting in this series is amazing, the sheer emotions that bled out of this episode’s script was amazing. I can’t wait to watch more, I hope they can keep this going.

  • May 15, 2011 at 7:56 pmChocolateDaimon

    I started a manga a while back, though it felt off my radar with it’s erratic release schedule. I am glad it achieved such a level of popularity that it has been granted its own anime series; it definitely wow’d me as a reader and it deserves this treatment as such.

  • August 17, 2011 at 10:24 pmAquaponics Review

    Thanks for the useful information! My partner and i wouldn’t have found this particular on my own!