I’m not the only one that found out about Amaterasu from Okami, am I? Man that was a great game! It sent me down a rabbit hole of Japanese mythology. To this day, I cannot hear the name Amaterasu without picturing a beautiful white wolf and trying to do calligraphy with my thumbs on imaginary joysticks.
Well this is a great start, none of this has anything to do with this week’s Fire Force. I did take a bucket load of pictures though. (I’m also working hard to keep Karandi’s site PG). If you want to see those pictures, you can do so HERE.
I thought we would find out what happened to Arthur. Or maybe he would be lost forever and the rest of the 8th would have to go out and drag him back.
I also figured that the incident with Rekka would have some major fallout. Maybe drag the boys into some investigation. I mean a fireman got murdered after all. There’s no way the gaping chest hole is passing for natural causes.
With the firemen involved in the incident all wrapped up in paperwork and political machinations, it would be hard to tell who’s on whose side!
What Did Happen
It seems that I was harsh in my judgment of the church of Sol and the emperor. In this version of Japan, there seems to be a unification of church and state. Historically not the best of ideas…
In any case, it seems they have accepted Flam and co. version of events and are now prioritizing finding and stopping this Evangelist that is creating infernals. The first step being to convey a meeting of all the fire company chiefs to get everyone on the same page.
I’m happy to report, company 8 (and 5 now) got the best chief. Everyone else seems…eccentric. At least in appearance everyone agrees to make hunting the Evangelist a priority except for the 7th, who simply walk out. I’m thinking they may become allies in the future as the 7th seems to have very few attachments to any other organization.
We also saw the return of Joker who confirmed that Shira’s brother Sho is, in fact, alive and a commander in the white hoods. Dun Dun DUN…Ok we kind of all called that one. But why is Joker being so informative?
Feeling the need to confide in someone, and feeling at home with company 8, Shinra decides to share his entire story with his teammates. This may prove to have been a mistake…
What About the Characters
Shinra has been a pretty straight forward shonen hero up until now. Positive and determined. Almost unbelievably steadfast in his morality. The only things that play off type is his design and characterization as a “devil” and the fact that he is refreshingly calm and reasonable. But we’re starting to see some cracks in that. Shinra is young and may prove foolishly naive. He’s also scared. Scared to make the same mistakes, to fail himself by failing others. I really am looking forward to seeing the brothers reunited.
I adored seeing Hibana pal it up with company 8th. In fact all the domestic scenes at the firehouse established a comfortable ensemble cast with a found family dynamic that I really dig. I don’t know why, but I can’t seem to fully relax around Obi though. And this is mostly because of this episode.
Don’t expect great insight, I’m not joking when I say I don’t know why. Obi just raises so many flags for me. I keep getting this creepy feeling that he’s either going to betray them or do something he considers the right thing but that royally screws Shinra or maybe he’ll just die. That’s the type of vibe I’m getting off of him. For no reason whatsover. It’s super unsettling. And could be entirely in my head.
What I Liked
I liked a lot. I liked the notion that what’s special about Shinra is that the fire he generates is a pure flame of creation. I hadn’t managed to pick up on that in the last few episodes and I was happy to have it explained clearly to me. Sure it plays into the chosen one trope but then again, they needed to explain why Shinra is so amazing.
I also liked the gallery of freaks that are the captains. All of them were intriguing in some way and it makes me want to get to know the other companies. I also immediately started suspecting all of them of being in cahoots with the White Hoods which is a great sign.
Similarly, Joker keeps me on my toes. Based on the super simplistic and naive fact that he’s wearing black, I assume that he’s not part of the White Hoods, but what exactly is his deal? He sure seems to know a lot about the inner workings of the organization. He also seems to have a rather personal interest in Shinra.Not in defeating him or recruiting him though. His motivations are still completely obscured. To me, that’s interesting.
Everyone’s interactions at the 8th are really coming together. The chemistry in the cast is quite enjoyable to me.
Finally, this is a very silly thing to like, but for some reason, it really tickled me that the emperor is called Raffles III. Not only is this very important man’s name Raffles, but he’s the third one to have it. OK, I’m a child…
What I Liked Less
Same old same old
The larger story threads are starting to get a little messy in classic anime fashion. Don’t get me wrong, a silly story with outlandish shadowy organizations and every increasing superpower sounds great but I was getting all geared up for a more subtle cloak and dagger type of narrative.
I’m afraid that the conversations around Fire Force may end up overshadowing the show itself so I’ve decided to stop paying attention to them. This makes the watching experience a touch lonelier.
I’m having fun with this show. It takes a lot of actual restraint on my part to not just go read the wiki and spoil the entire thing for myself so I can’t deny that I’m interested in the story. And I enjoyed this episode more than the last.
Mood: Steady as she goes
Contributed by Irina
from I Drink And Watch Anime!
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Images from: Fire Force. Dir. Y Yase. David Production. 2019.