「ほら穴の底の海」 (Horaana no Soko no Umi)
“The Sea at the Bottom of the Cave”
All good things come to an end. And it seems that Somali has been struck by the paralysing realisation that their journey with the golem will eventually reach a finishing point. What makes the situation so heartbreaking is that the Golem isn’t trying to rush things because he wants to rinse his hands of Somali. It’s so heartbreaking because the Golem only has a year left to live, and knows it’s absolutely imperative to find any group of remnant humans that can look after Somali. Most other options would spell doom, which is what drives the Golem to desperately speed the process up. You can understand why he’s unforgivingly strict – because it really is a question of life or death if Somali’s identity as a human is exposed. However, he fails to pick up on how it’s hurting Somali, who now believes they are an unwanted child.
Fortunately, the floofy Kikila comes to the rescue, letting Somali know about a subterranean flower that can grant wishes. Anxiety alleviated, and determination like never before, the two kids rush down into the beautiful and intricate underground complex to search for their quarry. The series has incredible world building and you can really tell a lot of thought went into each city, and the kind of cultures they have, including their own aesthetics. And I have to say the underground cavern is easily the most visually stunning thing we’ve seen so far, easily taking my breath away with every new frame. Using a wish granting flower, Somali could wish for anything – namely safety and protection in a world filled with monsters seeking to kill humans. However, Somali’s ultimate wish would be with the Golem forever, expressing an extremely deep love that really moved me. Maybe one could put that down to children having really simplistic thoughts. But regardless, that’s just so wholesome – even if it’s unlikely that these flowers can even grant wishes. After all, they say it’s the thought that counts. Although the episode does end on a tense cliffhanger, and this adult wolf humanoid can easily dispatch of these two youngsters without anyone ever knowing.
In terms of the technical details, the visuals and soundtrack were both extremely on point, synergising well in bringing this soulful adaptation to life. Especially the background art, which remained consistently excellent, and my hat goes off to Vincent Nghiem for producing such extraordinary work – as well as the mangaka Yako Gureishi for providing the basis behind such a wonderful world. Some people might feel inclined to make Ghibli comparisons. Somali to Mori no Kamisama certainly evokes that Miyazaki spirit. But don’t be mistaken – it is still its own thing. And I can’t wait to see how it continues panning out, since it’s been on an exponentially upwards trend. Anyway, that’s about everything I wanted to discuss. Thanks for reading this post and see you next week to find out whether the wolf mercenary has any ulterior motive for following Kikila and Somali all the way down.