「黒の世界」 (Kuro no Sekai)
“Black World”

That ending was beautiful. I am a huge fangirl when it comes to insert songs; especially at the end when the viewer is just suckered in because the first half was so mediocre and you’re not expecting much. Then that brilliant transition from conversation to action really brings back to life the excitement of rescuing Mirai. I won’t lie – I re-watched that ending piece at least three/four times to fully appreciate every frame and image that came up. The timing of the song and actions were just so perfectly aligned too. I’m speaking particularly to the floor cracks and when Akihito flies through the air. It’s just a beautiful sequence to watch that incorporates both music and visual effects to make you fully appreciate what’s going on. And a lot is going on. Akihito finds Mirai in the “White World” after remerging with his youmu-self and catches her after she stabs herself. What a romantic reunion between our protagonists.

Except, my major compliant is that, it wasn’t that romantic. In fact, I don’t really feel the chemistry at all between Mirai and Akihito. Personally speaking, I don’t care too much about Mirai and I don’t share Akihito’s affections towards her (but she’s cute in glasses!). That doesn’t mean that I wish that she’d stay in the “White World” or die, but I wish there was a part of me that was more anxious about her situation. It’s a pretty dire situation to be trapped within this other dimension (with other people trying to kill you), but this episode didn’t really make me believe anything bad was truly going to happen. The fact that I just know Akihito’s going to go and rescue her one way or another, ruins the urgency that I have to keep watching. Thankfully the last 3 minutes made up for that. Without it though, it was sort of inevitable Akihito was going to save Mirai; there was just no sense of distance between the two that really makes their reunion special.

Now we finally get a glimpse at Akihito’s very young and enthusiastic mother, who’s quite a character on her own. She actually reminds me a lot of other notable mothers in KyoAni anime which have mother figures that act… not their age. It’s not a bad thing, but sometimes I find characters like Kanbara Yayoi (Konno Hiromi) to be too over exaggerated and unnecessary. What role does she play exactly? How did she get so wise and all-knowing? But I think the most interesting question would be who Akihito’s father is. I don’t expect this type of question will be answered within the season’s final episode, but it’s good food for thought. At this point in the game, Yayoi feels like a plug character to just fill in the gaps of the existing story. She’s wasted potential of an undeveloped character because I think her story could be very interesting and add a lot of value to the overarching battle between youmu and Warriors. Unfortunately, I don’t think we’re going to get that level of depth here.

Next week will be our season finale! I can’t believe that this show is only 12 episodes long, that’s ridiculous! The story honestly could’ve been handled a lot better in terms of storytelling or pacing, but overall, I think they’re going to try and wrap it up rather well. It’s going to be a happy ending after all folks and that’s pretty much walking the line of predictability. I don’t expect many major surprises in this finale.

TL;DR – @RCCherrie: That ending to #kyo_kai blew my mind! The last 2 mins almost makes up for the first 18 mins… That did absolutely nothing for me =S

Note: I mentioned this in my Samurai Flamenco posts, but my laptop has recently decided to crash all my applications. This means I have no access to Photoshop or anything else really. I’m trying not to make it sound like an excuse, but my posts will be delayed as a result. Please be patient with me as I struggle to deal with this very stressful time of the year. Divine has been kind enough to help me with my images until I get this sorted out. Thanks to him and everyone else for understanding! =)

 

Preview

51 Comments

    1. This was not the best show of the year, especially with how other shows gave development and characterized the cast smoothly. I felt Kyoukai no Kanata had a great setting, amazing animation, and interesting comedy, but there are some flaws to some of the aspects of the show. Like the villain, Miroku, for example, we didn’t really learn what his true goal was or how he was brought into the Spirit World Warrior’s Society, and I felt that he didn’t develop enough we could feel the effect he is creating to the situation in the show. Then I think there should have been more development with Mitsuki and her brother because even though they are closely associated with the plot, the show didn’t portray their feelings in the show but rather we were left out from seeing how they’re related to Akihito and their inner feelings at appropriate times (I’m still wondering if she has a crush on Akihito, and if she does, how it developed).

      Understandably, I still think this show was great in terms of proving this magical setting and contagious comedy, but I don’t think this show was the best of the best, but definitely very entertaining.

      Dualash
    2. When are people going to learn that just being by Kyoani doesn’t automatically entitle a show to such distinctions of anything. It’s such an insult to actually well written and realized shows to always hear these things all the time, especially for shows that are as blatantly flawed and have casts as underdeveloped and cliche as Kyokai no Kanata’s.

      Well okay maybe not that bad, but these distinctions ought to be earned, not just given.

      Kaioshin Sama
      1. why must people be sooooooo critical of other peoples opinions?

        Fix’d.

        I practically don’t find this to be the anime of the year/season as well(In fact I haven’t found one yet for this season). But I don’t see the reason why I should always feel the need that other people should always have the same opinion as I.

        Truth is we are just itching to counter someone elses opinion. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t ever do it, in fact it’s good from time to time. Like on situations with very important matters or maybe it will bring something fruitful in the discussion.

        megalith
  1. This episode really highlighted the major flaw in KnK: the best characters are relegated to support roles. Yayoi as a main character would have made this series exactly 127.37% better. The show has swung awkwardly between comedy and drama which could have been much less awkward with Mitsuki and Hiromi as protagonists. Or more acceptable if Yayoi was mc since she is fantastically nuts and can kick arse too (anyone who can call the eldest Nase daughter “Izumin” and get away with it must be bad arse).
    After watching this episode I imagined what it would be like if Yayoi was the protagonist and I had to sit down somewhere dark and quiet until I calmed down.

    celebrinen
  2. I re-watched that ending piece at least three/four times to fully appreciate every frame and image that came up.

    Same here, man that was some well executed animation, and pairing it with the OP it really added a lot of nice intensity into the scene.

    But yeah, I wish Yayoi’s explanation for why she knows what she knows didn’t get explained as “because I’m me.” If we had more development on her then I might not mind that explanation as much, but given that we known only a handful of facts about her it’s very irritating. This late into the game I don’t know if we’ll ever get an explanation for how she knows these things.

    As for the reunion, I actually thought it was very sweet. It made me smile when I saw Akihito say to Mirai “Serves you right!” when he clearly has tears in his eyes from seeing her again.

    mangaka-chan
  3. It was not unpleasant at all!
    We do get finally some explanation from Izumi-neesan, and a sorting out of the timelines (the “winter” is Mirai’s “inner universe”, “summer” was Akihito’s dream and “autumn” is basic reality.
    Epic rescue is epic, but apart from that we still do have the sneaky bastard Miroku around. while Izumi-neesan was quite manipulative and not honest with everyone, he looks like final bad guy around. And the “Beyond the border” is still around, too…

    ewok40k
  4. Mirai is so used with her trademark “How unpleasant” quote that even when expressing joy, she had to say “did NOT feel unpleasant at all”. XD

    In fact, Mirai’s quote is now so immortalized by her VA Taneda Risa that whenever any other of Taneda’s characters would voice their displeasure at anything, NicoNico Douga would go into a tirade of “Fuyukai Desu”. LOL (Most notably with Himeragi Risa in Strike the Blood)

    echykr
  5. After hearing Yayoi’s exposition…

    Akihito: How did you know all of this?
    Yayoi: Who do you think I am? I’m your mother, after all.

    Spoken like a true badass mom. I too wonder how much more awesome the show would have been if Yayoi had more screentime, even if not as a main protagonist.

    The fact that she was able to trap the dangerous “Horizon Shade” inside Akihito in the first place is enough to give her badass parent levels on par with Naruto’s 4th Hokage, AKA Naruto’s dad, who similarly sealed the dangerous Nine-Tailed Fox inside his son.

    echykr
  6. what felt weird to me is that Yayoi (Akihito’s mom) knows what’s going on inside KNK (in fact, it seems like she knew all along for those 3 months). and when Izumi (Mitsuki and Hiromi big sister) come inside, it seemed like she knew what’s Yayoi is saying. however, during her discussion with Akihito..she seemed like she doesn’t know at all. moreover, we can assume she doesn’t know according to her reaction when the Agent did what he did behind everyone’s eyes. she never anticipated this.
    so it felt weird..

    that aside, I just don’t feel it. there isn’t a click of what’s between Mirai and Akihitio. that so called message he had in his phone and he came to understanding…I just don’t feel it. it’s not about feeling right or wrong..it’s just..there isn’t a click between what’s went on the screen to me. maybe it’s the characters’ shallowness that was demonstrated all along. if we were to establish a good connection with characters and there was a good development throughout the entire series (not just 1-2 eps), I guess it would have carried out way better.

    I do must praise the animation once again. seeing Mirai fighting and jumping alone with so much “epic piew piew” really is amazing.

    well, one more episode left (I thought it would be 13 eps..not 12. but never mind).
    I am not expecting something unusual. but I guess they will close most of thing. but might leave us something for S2 sometime in the next year or something (it won’t be surprise either, since all KyoAni’s published LN project announced for S2: free, chuuni (almost there!), tamako market..).

    thedarktower
  7. “At this point in the game, Yayoi feels like a plug character to just fill in the gaps of the existing story. She’s wasted potential of an undeveloped character because I think her story could be very interesting and add a lot of value to the overarching battle between youmu and Warriors. Unfortunately, I don’t think we’re going to get that level of depth here.”

    Now I’m fully curious how everyone here -who said words towards KnK- feel when they watched Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu back in the middle of 2000’es. When the story, pacing, and characters are clearly much more messed up than this one.

    And it become anime of the history, nonetheless.

    Moko
  8. While I am sad to see such wasted potential for this admittedly guilty pleasure show, I can’t be all THAT mad at it when the animation is just so damn fluid.

    I don’t care what anyone says, there is something about Kyoani’s ability to bring their characters to LIFE that boosts their rather mediocre repertoire to “flawed but fun”.

    This show has been addicting since the opening scenes of Episode one. Kyoani fan for life.

    HuckabyCentral
  9. As much as this episode still lacked the light needed on Miroku’s side, I really enjoyed this episode in so many ways. Yayoi’s entrance was awkward though. I did not expect her not to be having a fit at Izumi for plotting to kill Aki.

    What kinda surprised me though was that Aki’s immortality didn’t come from KnK and that he most probably has another entity inside him.

    Still, Mirai’s growth is just so good. I really love her as a character.

    On a side note, Ishidate must’ve held his mentor at gunpoint to make this episode such a spectacle. I can’t stop replaying the last minutes of the episode. My most favorite scene so far is this. That landscape cut just knocked my socks off. Seeing that barrier light up as it was torn open made it a very powerful entrance.

    Can’t wait for next week!

    megalith
  10. This series might be quite mediocre in terms of storytelling and characters, but it sure knows how to handle its comedy.
    Seriously, it has some of the best deadpan moments I’ve ever seen in anime.

    lorenzo
    1. The comedy is wretchedly bad. Hands down one of the most repetitive by the book bland shows when it comes to it’s attempts at being funny. It’s probably the single worst executed aspect of the entire show because all of it’s time wasted on rehashing the same old unfunny gags over and over could have been spent on more meaningful dialogue that fleshed out the characters and then maybe this final arc could have had some impact, but nope, Kyoani can’t ever have that sort of thing can they.

      Kaioshin Sama
      1. I’m not saying the execution as a whole is good. I’m just saying that, personally, it’s more entertaining to watch this show when it’s not taking itself seriously than when it is.
        Of course, they could’ve used their time better. But, even if it wasn’t their intention, the comedy moments were funny in themselves.
        And I’m not even talking about the idol episode or the over-redundant “Fuyukai desu” or “bespectacled beauty” joke; I’m talking about the ice cream moment last week and the mother moment this episode, which I found genuinely funny. But that’s probably because I’m not really engaged by the serious part of the show.

        lorenzo
    2. Not a fan of the comedy either unfortunately =S I guess this type of comedy just doesn’t really strike me as laugh-out-loud funny. Samurai Flamenco is more my type of situational/sarcastic humor. KnK isn’t boring by any means though – I just don’t think it’s as original as it could be in terms of comedy.
      The highlights of the show for me are probably the animation and soundtrack. But those are very important aspects of the show too (they get their own category in the Oscars =P) so it’s definitely not a waste of time for me. I like how the episodes are edited too (like last week’s flashback) so I would say that’s not bad either.

  11. I rather agree with your assessment of the show overall, Cherrie. I’m actually quite glad that this show ends next week, because I’ve gotten tired of waiting for it to grab me. It’s obviously not gonna happen. The ending is going to be predictable as hell too, I just know it.

    Because indeed, while I can appreciate how pretty everything looks on the surface and the execution of that insert song moment, it falls flat because I really don’t care about whether the characters live or die. Not once did I find Mirai and Akihito’s romance convincing in the slightest, and the characters in general are so underdeveloped (especially that villain, man, what a boring generic baddie) that none of them leave any impression whatsoever.

    Besides his mom, that is, maybe. At least she was amusing, even if she didn’t appear enough.

    Dvalinn
    1. I think the STORY has a lot of potential and I definitely don’t “hate” the characters to any great extent, I just don’t feel much attachment to them either. The light novel might show more depth in characters and advance the story more along the lines of the Nise clan vs. The Society (and that creepy man in the basement o_O). That’s what I would look forward to more, but the anime seems to be deviated from that (intention or not) and now it’s more focused on Mirai and Akihito. It probably would’ve interested me a lot more then if there wasn’t other stuff distracting the focal point of the two protags.

      Definitely a nice surprise to see other aspects of the story that keep me interested though. The ending this week and even the idol episode keeps it less predictable.

    1. Yeah, that part I don’t get either. I’m not sure if the writers for the show are going to intentionally gloss it over, but it does seem odd that for someone so well-informed like Yayoi she would’ve figured out or learned by the time she showed up that Izumi was trying to kill her son. I want to wait until the next episode to see if this gets brought up at all, since Izumi and Yayoi were shown on screen together for only about a minute in this episode.

      mangaka-chan
  12. Now that the anime is reaching the end……what is with the weapon sakura is using when fighting against Mirai. It absorbed the Hollow shadow stone and so??? what is its purpose. will be forgotten and left unexplained

    Layers
    1. The staff that Miroku used to “power up” Beyond the Horizon, it looks very similar to the weapon that Sakura used, remember that it fed off so many yomu and maybe on Sakura’s feelings even … so when it absorbed the hollow shadow stone (which Miroku stole) it became a dense mass of malice/hatred that Miroku used to power up Beyond the Horizon exposing it in the process.

  13. Those final two minutes were lyrical in their beauty .. in terms of visuals, music, matching the lyrics with what’s happening ..etc etc … truly wonderful.

    I suppose you could say that this episode was meant to make us share the feelings of frustration and and confusion that Akihito had (and it did a good job with that), then when the final two minutes start with the insert-song (oh, i’m a sucker for insert songs too XD) it all came together and snatched the viewer out of their frustration and into joy .. well done IMO, very well done.

    The part with Akihito’s mother was hilarious as well, that’s indeed one mother-son interesting relation .. it’s more like she is his sister than his mother … i guess that happens with young mothers XD

    I’m also kinda worried about the fate of Ai and Ayaka (the two yomu sisters) since they were sucked in by Beyond the Horizon among all the other yomu.

  14. May not be the best show this season but definitely best contender for “outros.” Though this episode’s was great, the best imho was ep 4 where mirai and akihito go for dinnet (extra beef!)

    Nanashi
  15. Same here, Cherrie! I just kept repeating that ending sequence because it was seriously amazing! I really wish this show was “carried out” a bit better, but even though it had it flaws, it was still entertaining to watch!

    I don’t know about season 2… I really want one (maybe possibly having information about Akihito’s dad, Mirai’ s clan, or even more on Miroku and that Society), but it definitely needs to be carried out better than this series!

    Ugh. KyoAni’s animation though. Has never disappointed me yet.

    rochichan
  16. I don’t buy any of the crap Izumi says. No way at all she’s doing it solely “save the world”. It was already established that that as long as the human part of Aki doesn’t become too weak, his other side won’t come out. Also, it’s not like Aki is purposely trying to awaken or anything. All they need to do (which the others have been doing) is to not have Aki be involve with anything too dangerous. He’s leading a fairly normal life, so as long as that’s not disturbed, everything should be fine. Not to mention, Izumi was the one who forced him to awaken during the calm. Saving the world my ass, I say she’s using it as a cover up for an alternate plan. There’s also the old man (their father/grandfather, perhaps?) to worry about. Hopefully she gets what she deserves and all her secrets reviewed in the final episode.

    bakakubi
  17. I’m surprised by how much Kyoto Animation managed to cram into one episode (o.o).

    On another note, is it just me or do Kanbara Yayoi’s eyes change color? Was she also on the phone with the father!?

    ichigo_daisuki
  18. If this series gets a second season, I want a more experienced director at the helm. As solid as i think this series is , i cant help but imagine the possibilities it would have in the hands of a more experienced director and a more focused script-writer. I mean this show was brimming with some cool ideas, and the premise of kyokai no kanata has the ability to go to some dark and intense places (just look at the CM for the LN that was released in 2012 I believe). Ep 10 was the highlight of this series, exploring a neat idea of telling its story through multiple realities, and when i happily anticipated that ambition to continue through this ep, it just turned out to be not as important as i thought it would be, and that’s a shame.

    My biggest disappointment (which isnt all that bad actually..well depends on how you look at it) is that this series never transcended just being solid. Sigh..again hopefully a second season gets a change in director and more dedication to the story-telling and the characters (hopefully a two-cour run as well; the pacing of this series proves if anything that this was not meant to be a 1-cour series)

    sonicsenryaku
    1. Loved last week’s episode as well! I thought episode 4 was also very well done and definitely the best highlights of the show so far. I don’t think the finale will live up to that or this week’s ending… but maybe I’ll be proven wrong =X

      I don’t think this series was necessarily “solid” but that might be because I’m nitpicking and watching it every week and over analyzing. It might be a far better watch if I were to just marathon it and leave no room for questions in between. There are going to be a few loose ends hanging at the end though (unless they magically wrap up everything nicely) so I find that that’s always a flaw. It’s not loose ends in a good way either (like second season potential), but more like, there’s just so much stuff that they added that didn’t need to be there.

      1. You make a good point about so many things being added; and had they had more time to be explored, they actually would have felt necessary (like Sakura) rather than just falling flat on its face. The answers left over are some that cannot be answered by the last ep because they are important to the overall plot which is still being unraveled in the LN’s so it’s really up to Kyo ani if they think this series has enough punch to run for another season. Again, my hope is that if it does, someone else takes directorial and writing control so that its better paced.

        sonicsenryaku
  19. The end to another good anime draws near. Kyoukai no Kanata wasnt the greatest thing out there, but its definitely one of the better ones of the season.

    Props to KyoAni for doing a fairly good job, especially if you consider that action/mystery anime arent part of their speciality

    All in all, Im satisfied.

    Ginobi47
  20. As to be expected from KyoAni, animation was topnotch all the way. The execution of the storytelling was meh though. Like I’ve said before, I really don’t like stories where villains were made just for the sake of being evil, just like what KnK did. Nobody was born evil, even the most evil persons has some backgrounds on why they became like that. If they manage to explain why he is bad, I still don’t think a single episode (the last one) is enough to elaborately explain and justify a backstory on why the villain became evil. It will be nothing but a half-assed explanation. The villain had no character progression at all.

    What I’m disappointed the most was Show Spoiler ▼

    The Story You Don't Know

Leave a Reply to starss Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *