「黒の銃弾」 (Kuro no Juudan)
Since I’ve already spent the past few episodes moaning about the awkward pacing, let’s just jump straight into all the cool parts about this one. Because if there was anything this episode did well, it was how it unleashed a barrage of nonsense at us. And who says nonsense has to be bad?
Rentaro is the new Edward Elric
Sure it’s not the same as Winry’s automail and Rentaro is actually missing his right leg instead of his left but how can you not just get a bit giddy when you see that awesome prosthetic in action? Making up for his lack of alchemy ability by having some low-tech Iron Man Mark I levers to activate things, I think the clockwork/steampunk lover inside of me was picturing a bunch of gears and mechanical parts spinning and turning as Rentaro unleashed a barrage of pain onto Kagetane.
But just like Ed and his quick to act mentality, I can see some serious issues behind some of Rentaro’s actions during this episode. Let’s just temporarily ignore the fact that he’s got augmented body parts and the ethical questions they’re existence raises. What I’m concerned about is the content of the gunk that he injected into himself to prevent himself from bleeding out. While there’s not much we know except that the AGV drug gives someone gastrea-like healing abilities at the risk of turning into one, who’s to say that user won’t also have to worry about the virus slowly eating away at them just like the cursed children? And that’s because…
Enju Is in Trouble
It blows me away that scientists can create a drug that can give humans gastrea-like abilities but can’t devise some sort of cure to help both the cursed children and people who have been infected by the thing. Anyways, amongst all the things that happened this week (which I’ll get into in a second) I was probably most concerned with Enju’s current infection level. Seeing how they killed off the only other character who evoked any type of emotion from me, I will throw an absolute fit should Enju end up going out the same way Senju did.
Pacing and Story Woes
Okay, there’s no way I couldn’t talk about the how the story was paced this week. In what felt like an attempt to get through the Kagetane arc as quickly as possible, a lot of the emotion that I was expecting to feel just wasn’t there. No empathy for Kagetane and his somewhat noble ambitions, no empathy for a daughter who just lost her insane father, and no empathy for Rentaro ripping off his own god damn arm to save an entire city. All things that could have been the perfect catalyst to create a sense of balance amongst all the action.
I suppose I should be grateful that Senju didn’t get completely shafted. Even though we only met her last week right before the episode ended, her existence felt like a breath of fresh air. I loved the way she highlighted all the good things in Rentaro while helping develop the notion that there society needs to change how they view the cursed children. Which is probably why toward the end I felt a swelling in my chest as Rentaro had to kill one of his few precious friends.
There’s good things and bad things about this show but that could be said about almost anything, right? Here’s to hoping that this introductory arc was just trying get all the information out in as few episodes as possible in an attempt to create something beautiful with the remaining ones. I personally would love if they’d flesh out the obvious social issues as well as HOW THEY’RE GOING TO PREVENT ENJU FROM TURNING INTO A MONSTER.
See you next week!