‘If this is a dream… please let me wake up!’
Synopsis: The fourth Septentrione, Megrez has appeared and now everyone from JP’s and the Nagoya Branch must come together to battle their new foe. The world is ending, deaths are impending and all the while they must survive.
This is the episode I’ve been waiting for since the very first, action, depth and that true contemporary survival feeling that makes this show so unique this season. The battle against the fourth Septentrione was awesome, the deaths, sad as they were, were saddening and the exposition that filled the second half of the episode was epic and left me feeling stimulated for episode 9. The pacing has become much better and it’s only benefited the show, long gone is the fan service, now we have doom and death around every corner… no one is safe.
First things first, yes Daichi you demons are still “weak”. Daichi’s uselessness aside, the action in the first half of the episode was exactly what this show needed in that second Septentrione fight against Merak. It possessed a sense of urgency, a sense of urgency that went hand in hand with the survival feel. Finally we got to see all of the characters that have been introduced duking it out with the hardest fight they’ve faced yet. There was of course that slight nod back to Keita with his demon appearing alongside Hinako and there was the dramatic tension as we watched Airi’s childhood disappear before her eyes. It was nice to see a world that has been lived in for once, it’s weird how sometimes whilst watching anime we tend to forget that people have lived and grown up in the places we see getting destroyed; Airi’s despair is a grim reminder of just how precious our memories and their physical forms can be. Right from the get go we could see that the Nagoya branch side of things was the weakest, I mean, Hibiki’s group tore a hole in it immediately and Yamato… well Yamato is a demon in his own right. It was just nice to see the team work that I’ve been longing to see, not just Hibiki being the Hero that he is, y’know? And when it all came together and the final blow was struck… wow… Is it me or does Ronaldo make everything seem epic? His serious disposition often throws me and I sometimes forget that he has the ability to smile, y’know?
Airi’s despair was one of my favorite parts about this episode, the sheer rawness of her emotions and the effect her feelings have on her ability to summon demons… it was extraordinary. Her demon kicked ass and it was nice to see someone else other than the ‘main characters’ kicking ass for a change… that being said, I was sad to see her almost die. I think it was inevitable when we saw their death clips earlier on in the episode that they would die, Ronaldo, Joe and Otome, that is. The only reason Hibiki survived his was because he is the main character, let’s be honest. Ronaldo’s epic ‘we’ll do what we have to do’ speech assured me ever more that he would die… and did it sadden anyone else that Joe didn’t get to be awesome before he died? I felt as though there was so much more to see of him… although I guess that what this show is all about, survival and the brief moment that is life. When Airi let out her cry after realizing they were all dead… wow. It sent shivers down my spine. That’s how voice actors should scream in melancholic moments!
Alcor, Alcor, Alcor… the truth is revealed. Now that it has been revealed that he is a Septentrione, I can’t help but feel as though he will be the final boss. I know that at the moment everyone feels sorry for him because he doesn’t know who he is and he just wants to… wait, does he or does he not want to ‘help’ the humans? I can’t tell. One moment he’s all smiling and complaining about humans and the next he’s child like and spouting a load of stuff about how he doesn’t want them all to die? Make up your mind pretty eye lash boy! That being said I did feel sorry for him… And who is this ‘Polaris’ guy? God? I think he too will be a septentrione and I think that in the end the group will have to battle ‘God’ to restore their world, but that’s just speculation… besides the whole void thing is actually kinda cool… Nice concept, very Shin Megami Tensei, y’know? I think that Alcors character development from here on out is going to be very interesting… I guess we’ll have to keep watching.
To conclude, this was BY FAR the best episode the show has displayed so far. The drama, the action and the tension all came together perfectly to make an awesome episode, an episode that leaves only one question (that’s really important to me as of now) to be answered, just who is Yamato Hotsuin and what are his motives? Will he and Hibiki has to battle it out in one last attempt by him to gain power? Who knows, but one thing is for certain… Next week is definitely not going to be as good as this episode 8… sad really.
P.S, I’m kinda sad to see yet more faces disappearing from that ending…