「佐賀事変 其ノ壱」 (Saga Jihen Sono Ichi)
“The Saga Incident, Part 1”
Thankfully, there is far less of a sour taste from this week’s Zombie Land Saga Revenge because we finally got the Yugiri episode we’ve all been waiting for. And it sure doesn’t disappoint as far as jogging questions of what happened with Yugiri and how many of the “reincarnations” are still around to this day.
It was a bit silly to have reincarnations of Franchouchou, but it provided a little fun to be had. Tae had one line, but it was also pleasant to see it wasn’t a growl. It was funny to see that Saki turned out to be Lily’s mother in a past life. There were also a couple of cute shoe-ins like Junko and Ai strolling around Saga, which at this time was a former shell of itself.
The appearance of Romero, however, is far more interesting because it calls to question how exactly he was able to come back to life. Additionally, the grandfather of Kiichi (Kotaro’s reincarnation) resembles the bartender, and it’s easy to either draw conclusions that the grandfather is a necromancer or that Kiichi grew up to become a necromancer, eventually becoming one of Kotaro’s possible grandpa or great-grandpa.
Additionally, Itou is an odd character that looks like he might be the catalyst towards much of Kotaro, Kiichi, and Yugiri’s despair as he’s coming off as far less trustworthy by the end of the episode. There isn’t much of a vote of confidence in his moral character when he gladly shoots down Kiichi’s dream of bringing back Saga by pushing him to be a worker or a family man not long after he also told him to avoid Yugiri since she’s out of his league.
Sending a cryptic message to a man on the street might also end up causing a chain reaction of events in his favor. Part of me thinks Itou could be Okoba’s reincarnation and that Okoba’s present-day efforts to expose Franchouchou might also tie into whatever treachery Itou might have in mind, but that’s all speculation for now.
It was a very nice episode for Yugiri though because it still reminded us that, at the time, she was still a young girl who was forced to grow up at an early age. Whether it be to become a highly-coveted courtesan or to live on her own with the wealth of a late general who loved her work, she had a lot of baggage on her shoulders. This baggage also helped make sense of her interest in Kiichi since she sees a youthful enthusiasm and an earnest effort in his desire to revitalize Saga into a new prosperous era. This era might not have come just yet due to the events that might happen in the second half of this two-parter, but they did well to make you interested in the adorable bond that Yugiri and Kiichi had as she encouraged him to do his best to let the legend of Saga come back to life.