「戦国おいしい法師」 (Sengoku Oishii Hooshi)
“The Delicious Feudal Monks”
On the last Yashahime episode of 2020, we are introduced to the chivalrous monk Miroku as Towa and Setsuna are tasked to be his bodyguards. Though he has bared enough children to let go of his perverted past, his decision to train for a thousand days to enhance his abilities causes some tension with his son Hisui.
It was a nice surprise to see that nothing dramatically different happened to Miroku. Like Sesshomaru is stuck in some mirror dimension and who knows where Inuyasha and Kagome went. Shippo is nowhere to be seen either, but I suppose nobody cared. But Miroku is still married to Sango, who supports his decision to train in the forest for a few years, and has three kids. One daughter, Gyoraku, even makes trips to the forest to deliver goods to him.
But the true rift comes from Hisui, who sees his thousand-day training as an excuse to escape his responsibilities to care for his family. I can see where he’s coming from given that the rest of the family has to pick up the slack and support the household while Miroku is off living in the forest for several years until he gains powers he’s not even guaranteed to gain. Where it’d be infuriating if you’re trying to make ends meet as the teenager when your dad left your mom and three children behind to go on a self-discovery trip.
At the same time, everyone else understands where Miroku is coming from and knows that if it works out, he’ll be able to offer better support to his family than before. He also loves his family enough that he offers them support and compassion when they visit him, which leaves a positive impression on Hisui because Miroku still managed to care for him as he helped fend off the next peril. It’s also nice to see that the married life sobered him up and he never made a mention of wanting to sexually harass Sesshomaru’s kids.
This episode also gave us a peril that was on par with Jakotsumaru as a repulsive villain. It’s not too far out of the blue to have bad guys who want to eat people, but Totetsu doesn’t merely vacuum them up and swallow them like Miroku’s former hand ability; He full-on chews them up. The beginning of the episode is surprisingly disgusting with the bone-crunching sounds of Totetsu devouring a monk whole.
Totetsu’s gluttony would lend itself to comical jokes where Towa uses her endless supply of 2020 snack items to feed him spicy chips and habanero hot sauce. I know they’re standard kid show jokes, but it was funny when he is disgusted from his ability sucking up an entire house for him to eat only for him to realize how unfortunate it is that his abilities force him to eat everything within his wind tunnels vicinity. Another funny moment was when he immediately dropped a Buddha statue from his mouth and outwardly explained that it’s one thing he really isn’t allowed to eat.
Although it is sad to walk away from Yashahime, it was a good episode to cap it off on since it was nice to see Miroku & Sango again and we got a decent fight out of it. In spite of the limited screen time for the older cast and the lack of InuYasha fan service to throw a bone to the older crowd that grew up with the first anime, I enjoyed what Towa and Moroha brought to the table. Towa was an amusing protagonist who was both a fun, scrappy heroine and a goofball who dotes on her sister. Moroha is the real star of the show as a hilarious mercenary who stumbles into each encounter she has with a demon she could potentially pawn off for money. The tanuki girl just kinda shows up to be silly, but I gotta give props to Ai Fairouz for knocking it out of the park once again on her voice. Setsuna is the catalyst for many of the goals that the three girls have and is a little too gloomy to be allowed a proper personality for the time being, but she has a ton of potential now that we’ve learned about the seal that suppressed her cool yet compromising powers. Although I’ll probably join back on once it reaches the finale, be interesting to see what Yashahime has in the pipeline for the next year.