My thoughts on the ninth episode of Owari no Seraph.
I suppose last week had its fair share of skirmishing and action so this episode, despite the setting changing to a battlefront, felt a bit laid-back at least content-wise. A couple developments took place such as the division of the Moon Demon Squad after the road collapse and some small insight into Mika’s lifestyle with the vampires – although the latter felt a little shoe-horned into giving him a time limit of sorts and I hope the show doesn’t run into that too overtly or else it will have felt kind of forced.
The art this episode, in my opinion, took another noticeable dip even though there were a couple good keyframes here and there (I though the introduction of Mito was one of the cooler things from the show so far even if it was only a few seconds and not that impactful of a scene overall). A good deal of the action scenes had some awkward looking character models and expressions and some of the distant shots were minimalistic to the point of not showing the character’s faces (this was not a case where that technique would have worked). The one kind thing I will say on this point was that this episode used a couple of interesting angles and so at least there is some vision behind all of this even if its poorly executed.
One thing I will say is that I like the idea of the pills or the ‘doping’ as Shinoa described it. It presents an interesting high risk high reward feature to their combat and more importantly fits the tone of the show really well – everything has gone to hell in their world and so relying on things like drugs and cheap tricks to get by is one of the first things that feels naturally accurate to the show. I can only imagine there will come a time when someone downs 2-3 of those things and goes wild at great expense but as is often the case with implementations like these, they probably won’t be punished to the full degree or at least not with their life. To soften this potentially present convention, I’d like to see someone else, not even necessarily from the group, utilize the drugs and end up dying. That will give them teeth within the plot and make me appreciate their risk more rather than showing them to be empty after some plot intervention.
The end of the episode set up some interesting things and it looks like the fight between Guren and company with Mika will take up a good deal of the upcoming episode while Yuichi and his companions regroup before heading to his aid.