Posted by: Dante Sangria | January 21, 2009

Kurokami Episode 2

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Basically, Kurokami is beginning to remind me a lot of a typical balance-of-souls super-girl anime a la Shakugan no Shana, as we learn throughout the episode. Doppeliner, a balance of souls with the same-looking bodies being upset in Tokyo, and contracts being made between a mysterious red-headed tough girl and a tragedy-struck boy, this second episode has a lot to offer and fill in for later on. Which is a plus – even though maybe I’ve drawn lots of lines between Kurokami and Shakugan no Shana.

SUMMARY

The episode begins with showing a bunch of Tribal Ends, an anti-Mototsumitama group that kills the strongest Mototsumitama clan: the Shishigami. One of them is being hung up in an almost-crucifixion pose, being sliced up by invisible blades by Seiji-san, seemingly the leader of the pack. After a failed interrogation, Seiji-san kills the poor soul as he tells his henchmen to go and fetch “the girl,” who after absorbing her Tera (life or power force, of sorts) will hand her over to Hiyou (Kuro’s brother, one is led to think?).

A quick scene change to little Mayu-chan’s funeral draws attention to the “doubles” and “triples” oneself has, as Keita reflects on what people told him about this, and he gives it much thought throughout the episode. It is… the same as what happened to his mother.

Later on, after a day of school and a failed attempt on part of the teacher to talk to him (as he is now seemingly depressed), Keita returns home to find Kuro on his floor, munching away at a cabbage! He yells at her, wondering what she is doing here, and- Akane-chan returns to the apartment, and Kuro quickly asks if she is Keita’s sister, aunt, or whatever – blushing, she denies it all. Keita can’t contain himself anymore and asks why Kuro is there – Akane, assuming she was an acquaintance of Keita’s, let her in after seeing her on the ground collapsed in front of his door. Keita asks her to leave, which she apologetically does. Afterwards, Keita’s sad, strange little self asks Akane to leave as well.

Keita feels bad, and brings a bag of groceries that Akane brought for him to find Kuro. He spots her sitting alone in a park, and approaches her. He takes this chance to ask her what she is – what Mototsumitama are, Doppeliners and Roots, etc. We discover that Mototsumitama exist to control a balance of coexistence (sound familiar, anyone?). All persons receive an equal amount of Tera, but since there are three look-alikes with different fates, Tera (likened to luck) is divided unequally amongst them. When the two with lower Tera find each other, they are eliminated according to the system of balance. The third becomes a master Root, and absorbs the Tera of the other two.

Scene change! Creepy multi-monitor-man watching… Akane-chan enter a convenience store? The same one we saw in the first episode. I wonder what it is with this store, or with the guy watching everyone coming in…. However, he also has her picture in his hand….

Back to Kuro and Keita, as she prepares to leave they are confronted by multiple Tribal Ends henchmen, who all leave to make way for the pack leader Seiji-san, who has absorbed the Tera from defeated Mototsumitama in order to use their attacks. He almost kills Kuro, but Keita is doomed after a fatal attack where almost all his blood is drained. Kuro musters enough energy in a surprise to grab Keita and escape, where they are underground. They trade… glowing blue balls from their hearts – their souls, I guess, become shared? – and a contract is formed between them, as is shown by the marks on their right hands. After Keita’s extreme blood loss, this was the only way to save him.

Right after Keita comes-to, Seiji returns with a vengeance, nearly killing Kuro this time, mocking her for making such a useless contract. (Which we are left to wonder what such a contract entails? Evidently not “shared pain,” though, at least!) However, Seiji knocked down some power lines, and Kuro holds onto Seiji’s invisible whip, whilst using the electric wire to send the current through her body into Seiji’s. After a finishing blow from Kuro following a dramatic explosion of power from Keita (which does seemingly nothing) into an electric pole, the villain is finally fried to a crisp and suspended in a gruesome way.

At the end of the episode, we see a tall and mysterious man and a high-class looking girl standing next to each other, as the girl remarks that there is an extreme imbalance of Tera in Tokyo….

Next episode?! Does Keita confess to Akane – she seems much older than him….

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FEEDBACK

There’s a lot building up in the second episode, though the third one (as we can tell from the preview) seems… absolutely unrelated!!! But what’s all this talk about “Tera,” balance, and etc.? I think we do understand what Mototsumitama are (and Shishigami), Doppeliner and Roots, but we are left to wonder what the Tribal Ends are, and who Hiyou is (if he is indeed Kuro’s brother…). There is still some to save this series so far from the fate of a very stereotypical anime, but I just don’t know what it could be. It started out as more dark, so I think it should keep that mood unless it’s trying a 50/50 Higurashi-esque route… it’s got too many happy-go-lucky Kuro moments to fulfill that, however. And we know she’s not really that happy-go-lucky – right?

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