OP: 「Valkyrie -戦乙女-」 (Valkyrie -Ikusa Otome-) by Wagakki Band
「双星交差」 (Futaboshi Kousa)
“Intersection of Twin Stars A Fateful Fight”
Showing How Good These Two Are
If the premise of this series is that Rokuro and Benio are the strongest exorcists, that needs to be shown, not just said. That’s what this episode set out to do, and it did it well. Aside from a worrying habit of showing unnecessary flashbacks to moments that happened last episode or even earlier this episode—a sign of either padding or not trusting the viewer—this was all laser-focused on setting up the rest of the premise, and that meant Rokuro and Benio’s strength had to be shown. And it was.
Granted, there was a certain amount of us being informed that something was impressive due to the in-universe audience’s reactions—reacting with surprise to Benio’s strong enchantment, or being aghast at Rokuro pushing her back—but I’m fine with a little show and tell, and the fights were good. After last episode making it seem like Rokuro was the stronger, it was nice to see Benio match him blow for blow. It’s not that Rokuro is strong, it’s that he’s focused on strength while Benio is focused on speed, so a big monster is a better fit for him. Neither is better than the other right now, or so it appears.
If there’s anything I’ve learned from Kami-niisama, it’s that the opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. As a matter of fact, strong feelings of any kind can lead to love, and that includes hate! (I really ought to finish that manga sometime.) I like that Rokuro and Benio started out being annoyed at each other, because of course they would. With how their personalities are, and the cross purposes they find themselves at (Benio wanting to be the strongest, Rokuro wanting out despite being so strong), it’s only natural.
That doesn’t mean I’m not shipping them, nor am I the only one. Head Exorcist Tsuchimikado Arima (Namikawa Daisuke) is a great shipper on board, muahaha! I knew when he started talking about the miko it would end up being their child, and he didn’t disappoint. And sure, it’s problematic for two 14-year-old kids to have their choice of a future spouse taken away from them, but c’mon. They’re so alike! Can’t help but ship ’em. Or at least I can’t. I’m a huge softie. We’ve gone over this.
After last episode I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to blog this, especially after some people started saying this might be 4-cour (with only ~30 chapters of manga to draw from). But now some sources are saying 12-episodes, and I liked this episode even more than the first, so guh! My blogging choices are hard this season. If I don’t end up covering this, it won’t be because I’m not enjoying it; I’m spoiled for choices this season. Either way, I’m looking forward to seeing how the two of them deal with their new fiancés next episode.
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Benio & Rokuro prove their strength. They’re matched. Which means it’s time for a baby! #sousei 02
- Bunny pajamas. I’m glad they’re not fetishicizing Benio, the odd leg flash or towel scene aside. That makes the odd scene more fun!
- Normally I hate coincidence in storytelling, but if it’s reasonable, it’s fine. Sometimes things just do happen. Ex: Ryougo overhearing Rokuro and Benio in the hall. He lives there, so that’s totally reasonable.
- The chief exorcist is a dangerous, conniving guy. Not just for obvious reasons. Insulting Rokuro’s dead friends, even though I understand why he did it (and he did apologize, to his credit)…he’s a guy to watch out for.
My first novel, Wage Slave Rebellion, is available now. (More info—now in paperback!) Sign up for my email list for a FREE sequel novella. Over at stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: Even if you see it coming, it can still work, Batman does not kill. Superman does not kill., Inside Out: What Emotion Drives You?, and Superhot: Storytelling through gameplay.
ED: 「アイズ」 (Eyes) by Kaji Hitomi