「狭間へと、狭間から」 (Hazamaeto, Hazamakara)
“To the Rift, From the Rift”

After a week long hiatus, Shana returns with an episode that starts the new season off right. A little bit of action, a little bit of story, and a whole lot of Shana x Yuuji action! However, I can see a few key points that might make you manga readers rip your hair out.

To start things off, I love it when a series opts to drop the opening and ending sequences in order to squeeze in a bit more. And while Shana has been dropping the ending sequence for the past few weeks, it was a pleasant surprise to see things jump straight back into the action without an opening sequence to break the pace.

In terms of the fight between Khamsin and Sabrac things started to get real intense, real fast. With the former finally able to dawn his traditional garb only to have the latter obliterate it and land an infinitely bleeding blow on the only person without one, I was ready for something huge to take down either side. The thing is though, I’m still a little confused about how it all ended. Sabrac just let his opponents blow him up and then disappeared into space — something I wasn’t expecting. I mean, it was just last week that Sabrac’s love interest was revealed but without any explanation or buildup, it felt like a copout watching him lose the will to fight after learning the ugly truth behind why his girl left him.

Luckily, Yuuji and Shana’s battle wrapped up in a slightly better fashion. Not only was it fun to watch but it managed to directly answer a question I’ve had since season one. To put it bluntly, both Shana and Yuuji have finally expressed their love for each other and nearly sealed it with a would-be romantic kiss. I mean, how often to you get to watch a couple try to kill one another only to drop everything and start sucking face? And it doesn’t feel out of place?!

Seeing how Sairei no Hebi actually made it back into the real world, I hope things don’t get too toned down in the upcoming weeks. Even though we already know another huge battle is on the way, I hope this second arc is just as good as the first.

P.S. FALCON KICK REDUX!

 

Preview

42 Comments

  1. “it was just last week that Sabrac’s love interest was revealed but without any explanation or buildup”

    I think I remembered seeing her back in S2 but I guess a bit more of a flashback was necessary to actually depict the relationship they had

      1. Her? I always thought that was a filler arc that JC staff came up with to pad out the beginning of S2. Sabrac’s love interest… I’ve heard nothing but good things about the latest episodes. Guess it’s time for me to marathon the first half of Final.

        UnFear
      2. I mentioned this last episode but I’ll explain again

        Mare started out as a filler character for the Shana PS2 game, though novel author Takahashi Yashiro liked her enough to incorporate her into the novel canon, giving her a small though significant role in Sabrac’s development.

        Kinny Riddle
  2. Well didn’t they say last episode that they didn’t want to blow up the island Sabrac’s body is tied to because they would get stuck/stranded and at the time it wasn’t certain whether sacrificing themselves like that would stop Sairei no Hebi? I figure after they saw that he was released they no longer had any inhibitions of blowing up the island. Plus they solve their stranded problem by hitching a ride off Sairei no Hebi:)

    Smoe
  3. What Smoe said – Sabrac’s body was mixed into the island they were standing on, so they couldn’t destroy it or him without getting stuck – when the snake came past they blew up the island and hitched a ride on the snake.

    I feel bad for Sabrac though – he gets rearguard duty against four of the strongest flame hazes while the rest of the Bal Masque leadership take a lesiurely cruise ;p

    Velk
    1. Exactly.

      It’s also the reason Khamsin could not create a golem as most of the rock in that island is attached to Sabrac’s body. He only managed to this episode as Sabrac was briefly isolated from the island last week by Wilhelmina and Rebecca last week.

      I would speak in Sabrac’s defense that he managed to stay badass (and arguably undefeated) till the end.

      Like I said in last episode’s thread, his monologue concerning Mare was about why a weakling like Mare would want to venture into our world for the sake of “exploring the unknown” at the risk of one’s life, for he has never encountered anyone stronger than he is.

      Now upon seeing the majestic and mighty figure of Snake, Sabrac finally understands how Mare feels about being awed by the unknown. As such, he feels content enough to leave this world, even refusing Bel-Peol bailing him out again.

      Kinny Riddle
      1. So essentially Sabrac’s entire reason for continuing to live was trying to understand why his love left him and/or how she felt as he has never seen anyone more powerful than he is. Once he saw Sairei no Hebi he finally understood and felt content to die?

        UnknownSoldier
  4. https://randomc.net/image/Shakugan%20no%20Shana/Shakugan%20no%20Shana%20III%20Final%20-%2013%20-%20Large%2023.jpg
    Applause must be given to Fecor, while being fatally wounded by Tenmoku Ikko earlier on, still manages to shield the God’s Gate from being destroyed by Sophie, which would potentially trap Shana and co for eternity, in the nick of time.

    BTW Takaii, you missed out on screencaps of Chiara (Kayano Ai) and her mentor Sale, as well as EastEdge and Pheles. With the Battle outside Seireiden about to end but with still 11 more episodes to go, surely JC Staff would spend time fleshing out Chiara and Sale’s character, as they would play as big a role as Rebecca had in the first half of this season.

    Hopefully we’ll get the second OP and ED next week to coincide with Yuuji/Snake’s announcement of the 3rd and final phase of Bal-Masque’s Taimei master plan.

    Kinny Riddle
  5. sophie seriously need a new move, she don’t any special move except that lighting kick. that is the least i expected from plum nun’s kick (-_-)” . other other hand the battle between shana and yuji while exchanging their thought and love is totally epic, too bad it have come to end. still i got few question which need to be answer :
    1) if that giant snake is sebi, then why he still need merge with yuji , since he has got his whole body..
    2) since yuji merge with sebi , so supposedly he should be untouchable but how came he be injured by shana …

    anyway fecor really do good job in protecting the gate , and gotta love yuji new hair style kinda remind me , fong from hitman reborn. watching shana season 3 , it feel that making me changing side ( seriden)rather than flame haze while shana stuck in between it .

    shinkirou
    1. To answer your questions:

      1. Snake has his reasons for staying with Yuji even after retrieving his real body, as their interests are parallel to each other’s. And after all, Yuji wouldn’t agree to be Snake’s host in the first place if it ends up with Snake ditching Yuji.

      2. Yuji is merely acting as a “container” for Snake’s conscious, not unlike a Flame Haze contracted to their Crimson Lord. So he’s not exactly invincible.

      Kinny Riddle
  6. I felt like the Shana/Yuuji side stalled a bit. Last episode ended with Shana and her spectacular declaration, so I kind of expected a climatic duel this time around rather than more exposition about who wants what. Also, it irks me when they just keep repeating each others names in response to each other…

    As for Sabrac’s side, I totally get him saying why they were still fighting since he is completely invulnerable with his body linked to the very ground they stand on. Wilhelmina and Rebecca could have better spent their time just blowing chunks out of the ground and castle. There’s completely no point in actually attacking the sword wielding body especially since it can fatal injure you with one slice. How he died at the end was totally depressing too. So, the giant snake that Sabrac was helping in reviving just comes along and purposefully destroys his castle and invulnerability, and pretty much leaves him to die. you’d think some otherworldly dimensional tunnel would have enough space for the snake to “go around” instead of killing off an ally. Sure Sabrac chose to die at the end, but he wouldn’t have been in that position if he wasn’t left vulnerable to Rebecca’s attack (cheap shot, btw).

    Mm…I guess I didn’t like this episode.

    Ptolemaios00
    1. You make it sound like Snake backstabbed Sabrac, which is not exactly correct.

      When Snake appeared, Sabrac could have easily dodge an attack like Rebecca’s, but he didn’t, as he was so awestruck by the majestic figure of Snake’s true form, that he basically lost the will to fight and live anymore.

      So while Snake may have indirectly caused his demise, it wasn’t exactly Snake’s fault that Sabrac died. Besides, Bel-Peol even offered him a lifeline, which he refused.

      Kinny Riddle
      1. That’s exactly what I meant. The Snake purposefully rammed through that castle. The whole episode it was just whimsically plodding along, and the only time it did something different and exerted some type of power was when it reached the castle. The castle was Sabrac’s trump card and kept him invincible from any attack. Yes, I recognize that he was awed by the Snake’s size, he let himself get hit by Rebecca, and he cut off him own arm to avoid rescue. However, he would have still been invincible if the Snake did not ram through his lifeline like a juggernaut.

        Ptolemaios00
      2. Once again, in Snake’s defense, his size is so big that he had to ram through the castle island in order to get out, whether he meant to or not and whether there was still anyone in it, ally or foe. Since the castle island, along with other “islands” we’ve seen only serves as a marker for the extremely long invisible tunnel towards the exit.

        It was supposed to be Sabrac’s responsibility to dodge the Snake and hitch a ride along with it back out, but he let himself be awestruck by Snake’s size and the rest is history.

        Kinny Riddle
    1. That Pokeball looking thing is called Khardish’s Chamber (or however you spell that) – the “cockpit” of Khamsin’s golem.

      Gotta give Sabrac credit for managing to pierce through all those layers of rock in order to get to this Chamber and even injure Khamsin inside.

      Kinny Riddle
  7. With the serpent out of the dimension portal, it is really up to the four guardian-like figures (one of them carry a huge jar on his back) to turn the tide of the battle. Shana will either end big or wrap up in a hurry using convenient excuses (like the self-destruction of Sabrac).

    Matroid
  8. Takaii, thanks for the review. But the last part of your review confused me a bit. It wasn’t a passionate kiss. It was a one-sided peck on the cheek. Yuuji didn’t kiss back.

    Right before that scene, Shana quoted Yuuji’s mom, saying a lip to lip kiss signifies a promise between two people. That’s why she only kissed Yuuji on the cheek. It was to tell Yuuji that even if he believes that Shana can never stop him, Shana will still do everything to bring him back. It was a promise from Shana to Yuuji.

    So if you’re waiting for a direct confirmation of Yuuji’s feelings for Shana, then I guess you still have to wait. On the other hand, we all know that Shana loves Yuuji, just like how Taiga loves Ryuuji. =D

    Dusk
  9. All these years waiting for a kiss between Shana and Yuji finally show some reward. the kiss was not as pasionate as I was hoping but reafim the strong feelings that Shana holds for Yuji and predicts something interesting for the future. Until now only Shana has declared his love for Yuji and he has yet to say the words, so their first actual might come when they profess their for each other.

    As for the story, I´m happy to see Sabrac´s character to developed further as it was since nothing was really know about what was his driving inside Bal Masque. Sale and Chiara´s role was minor this time but I have the feeling that they and the rest of the Gods of the Earth are going to play a major role in the coming events.

    haseo0408
  10. Yuuji finally will kick some asses? He lowered the fumes at a red dwarf? Eradicate the earth at a fortyish shaved nun? Dismissed from the series at a cosplay maid lover?

    Yuuji will have the guts needed to make this show ends in a dignified manner?

    Abyss
  11. Oh well 2 more of the strongest tomagara bite the dust – namely Sabrac and Fecor, though Sabrac suspiciously leaves no body (and although Bel-Peol pronounces him dead I am not sure…). Fecor gets bonus points for protecting the Gate even with his last breath.
    OTOH Khamsin and company had really been lucky Sabrac just forfeited the match.
    With Snake’s return to the real world shaking the very fabic of existence, we are set for probably even more epic battle next. Both sides will throw everything into this one,and Bal Masque seems to have real edge with their leader free.
    Finally Yuuji and Shana will probably continue their fencing X kissing duel. I was disappointed Shana was not able to complete her kiss!

    ewok40k
  12. anybody got any idea who those three random looking people who felt the mist-quake are? the corpse collector paid them a visit on episode 16; i wonder if theyre important in the plot…

    starfallcity88

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