Yo, do not forget that time final week after I was impressed by how darkish and horrific Blue Exorcist was enjoying Izumo’s story (even when the present’s type of flat aesthetic wasn’t in a position to absolutely promote the tonal shift)? Well, “I Can’t Rely on Anyone” is an episode that noticed what its predecessor did and responded with an enthusiastic, “Hold my beer!” It’s tough for me to say that Blue Exorcist has by no means tried one thing like this earlier than—I’m turning thirty-two in a few weeks so I am unable to keep in mind each element of what occurred in episodes that aired a decade in the past—however this strategy seems like a territory that the present hasn’t explored earlier than, and that feeling is sufficient. Izumo’s life is certainly crammed with heartbreak, tragedy, and terror, and we should bear witness to it to know what the Illuminati has in retailer for her.
In the massive image, most of what we uncover in “I Can’t Rely on Anyone” is stuff that we might simply have inferred based mostly on final week’s climax: Izumo comes from an extended line of mediums who use the ability of their bloodline to channel their familiars and appease the Nine-Tailed Fox Spirit with the Divine Summoning Ritual, and the Illuminati, led by Dr. Gedoin, have been performing experiments on the Inamaki household to harness the ability of the Fox Spirit for themselves. In phrases of latest plot revelations or character motivations, nothing right here goes to drastically change our views or rework the narrative going ahead, and that is completely okay.
What this episode excels in, as a substitute, is the coloring in of Izumo’s previous in such a manner that she turns into a way more fascinating and empathetic character. Everything we see unfold on this prolonged flashback works in direction of getting us to really feel Izumo’s present plight, quite than simply understanding it on an mental degree: Her mother’s flighty and unserious nature; the shut relationship she has together with her youthful sister Tsukumo, in distinction to the chilly and judgmental gazes of everybody else in Inami; to not point out the horrifying cruelty of Dr. Gedoin, contrasted in opposition to the humanity of Maria, the doomed Illuminati researcher. It’s all very compelling and rewarding stuff to get for a personality who has spent the overwhelming majority of this collection merely filling the function of “The Tsundere Girl.”
Like final week, my one main gripe with this episode comes all the way down to points in presentation and tone that diminish the horror of the story, just a little. The episode appears completely high quality on a technical degree, certain, and there are some scenes, resembling Maria’s brutal execution on the finish of the episode, that also handle to get the terrible nature of the state of affairs throughout. By and enormous, although, I simply want that Blue Exorcist might be really scary, as a substitute of merely being an motion anime that borrows some themes and visible cues from actual horror tales. The lighting in Tamamo’s massive possession scene, as an example, is simply too flat and muted to be atmospheric, and even Maria’s dying scene is shot in such a manner that finally ends up underselling the tortuous nature of her dying. It’s one factor to carry off on the blood and gore to go away extra of the nasty particulars as much as viewers’ imaginations, however “I Can’t Rely on Anyone” simply does not have the directorial chops to make up for the shortage of express particulars with temper and environment.
This continues to be an excellent episode of Blue Exorcist. I simply would like to have seen the completely unbelievable factor this story might have been in numerous arms. Still, the present has actually carried out its job in making me want for Dr. Gedoin and all of his cronies to endure some horrible vengeance at Izumo’s arms (or claws, because it appears prone to go). Hopefully, we’ll get to see the great physician get his simply desserts quickly sufficient.
Blue Exorcist: Shimane Illuminati Saga is at present streaming on