「意志の兜」 (Ishi no Kabuto)
“The Helmet of Will”
If I’m being entirely honest, my reception of this show has been rather mixed. I try to be open minded when it comes to overall animation, and sure, this show is not exceptional by any means, but it’s well done. And while I do enjoy and look forward to action in anime, I did get a sense from the first episode that Saihate no Paladin’s forte would not be found in action but rather in spirit. Part of me wished that had been more of the focus than the action, but then again, the show is about a paladin so fight scenes are inevitable. With that said, animation on fighting scenes did leave a lot to be desired and the soundtrack choice has been questionable in the same (hello there, you outtanowhere RPG OST) and such choices definitely disrupt my immersion with the content. As I’m writing weekly reviews, I try to keep as positive an attitude as I can, focusing on diving deeper into what was tastefully done rather than ranting about what wasn’t. Alas, I was pleasantly surprised with Ishi no Kabuto, out of the five episodes so far this one took the baton as my favorite, showing that Children’s Playground Entertainment does know how to do it (even the soundtrack and editing were a lot more harmonious). Sure, there’s a lot that goes on behind the production of an anime and much that we don’t account for, still I hope that what we got this week was actually a new direction and not a one time detour.
We got an emotional episode where the true depth of the bonds shared by the members of our unorthodox little family were explored, not only with Will, but in their life prior to their undead-ing. The post-credit flashback between Mary and Blood cemented the real meaning behind the importance of the life these four characters shared in that temple. As they talk about the future, their infatuation with one another, marriage, starting a family and raising a boy child named Will really hit the right spot. Losing a parent is quite the particular experience, I personally think there’s no right or wrong way to go through such an event seeing as interpersonal relationships can be quite complicated (speaking from my own experience), however young Will’s parting with Mary and Blood leaves us with a bittersweet pang in the heart and a sense of true honoring of his ancestry.
“No parent should ever bury their child,” is a sentiment I agree with. Mary and Blood had a difficult choice to make and they chose with love–sometimes what’s best isn’t what you immediately want. They look ahead into the future and let go. Who wouldn’t want to stay longer with their son if they could? Especially with the loving and nurturing relationship they shared. Will’s last ‘selfish’ request sounds way more enticing than Stagnate’s offer to the boy. Yet they stand their ground, celebrate their lives together and then set off with Gracefeel to their new cycle of death and rebirth. Grandpa Gus stays behind to run some unfinished business for the goddess of light and to give Will some relevant cheat codes for his journey: gold, lots of gold and precious gems. It was the best way to close this chapter in the journey of Will, who now carries his parents legacy in the form of his last name as well as his grandfather’s in his middle name: William G. Maryblood. We now have a fully fledged young protagonist setting off in his journey to explore the world. To live right so he can die right.
Bonus bits: I’ve been listening to this song ‘Carry Your Kin’ by The Breath and coincidentally it fits with the theme of the episode.
Also, how hot is Blood? SO MANLY! I won’t even get started on Mary, but damn, he’s absolutely my number *fans herself*
Full-length images: 36.