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Blue Exorcist Episode #08 Review

4 min read

Nothing gets teenagers to become friends quicker than being forced to do so.

What They Say:
Crushed by her failure to save her best friend, Izumo lashes out at Suguro! Their bickering escalates until the whole class is involved, and they’re all sent to detention. Suddenly, the students are attacked by the ghoul Rin fought the day before!

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the last episode focusing on Izumo, and showing us once again that Rin really hasn’t been properly introduced to the world he’s now a big part of and has a huge connection to, the storyline it introduced actually has some interesting moments to it. Izumo’s the kind of hard edged girl that’s on the outside of things for reasons shown before, but there’s that part of her that wants to be there with everyone else as well. Not that this class has really come together all that much outside of the secondary characters for the most part, and even then it all seems very casual. Rin and Izumo are definitely alike in how they stand apart from everyone else but for different reasons.

With Izumo’s friend Paku having been taken down and Izumo holding herself largely to blame for it, she’s shoring up herself for what may be coming according to her dreams, or nightmares as they case may be, but also for how Paku herself may treat her after this. She’s had such rough luck with friends over the years that her fears are well warranted, but she runs the risk of making it actually happen because of how she is. With the nature of this class being so split at this point, it is amusing that everyone is dealt with in the same way in the end by Rin’s brother Yukio as he puts them all in a room together and essentially says that they have to sit there with each other for a few hours, cool off and figure out how to get along. If not for the supernatural aspect, we could have been on track for an anime episode of the Breakfast Club.

Naturally, the episode turns to the supernatural as the one of the creatures has found its way there to cause a lot of mischief. These things do seem to pop out of nowhere at times and it’s surprising that they do appear here at the Academy. The episode is good for what it wants to do though in creating a forced situation where the kids have to actually work together. They’re not exactly eager to do it and they have their lone wolf’s to contend with, but the general results are pretty much as you’d expect here. What it does do well is to highlight the characters, their basic abilities and to show us exactly what they’re capable of. The situation may be predictable but it’s nicely executed and has some very good animation to it that carries it through. While you don’t truly get to know the characters better, they’re a bit more fleshed out than the two dimensional characters they previously were.

In Summary:
Blue Exorcist does make a minor reveal here but it’s not one that’s too awful surprising when you get down to it. Its core premise is to get everyone on the same page, a bit of a physical smack to the head in order to show them that they do work well together and aren’t as different as they seem to think they are, but it misses an opportunity by turning it into an all action piece. Which considering its source material origin, it isn’t a surprise. But I would have preferred more time with the kids sitting around shooting the breeze and getting to know each other in a real way. The show continues to have a fun sense of humor about it and the animation is still strong, but it’s still mostly following the usual kinds of conventions that I had hoped it would break from a bit more. There’s plenty to like here with a good cast of kids and some great action, but it needs a bit more emotion and grounding to it. And someone really needs to sit Rin down and explain to him the basics of this life.

Grade: B

Simulcast By: Crunchyroll

Review Equipment:
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.

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