“The Sea at the Bottom of the Cave”
What They Say:
The world is rules by a diversity of inhuman beings, who persecuted humans and drove them to near-extinction. One day, the forest guardian Golem meets a human girl. This is a chronicle of a journey that would bind a member of the dying “human” clan to the forest guardian Golem, as father and daughter.
Content (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Somali and Father find themselves at an isolated desert rest stop, pausing for a cool drink to slake his daughter’s thirst, but also as a way to quiet her loudly grumbling stomach. While she is happy to walk to their next destination, the temptation of utilizing a nearby carriage is outside of their current means since they lack the funds even for food. But abundant enthusiasm is soon beaten down by relentless heat, causing the young child to complain her legs will not last much longer, only to have the Golem declare they have arrived at their next stop – Anthole City. As Somali quickly forgets how tired she was before, a stern explanation from Father about the wandering layout instills a new fear of becoming lost, causing her to quickly grab his metallic finger. An obnoxious growl of someone’s empty tummy makes them stop at a merchant’s stall to sell gathered materials, to which the guardian states in disappointment the low selling price which is due to abundant wares. It is then when the buyer suggests if he wants more money, then it would be best to seek out odd jobs, with everyone looking for helpers in their businesses.
As they are looking for a place to eat, it is Somali who quickly spots a curious site – a small wooden box scurrying across the cobblestones, which she stops only to find a child hiding beneath, desperately apologizing for running away. However the young girl does not hear these sorrowful pleas, only more concerned about cuddling with this boy’s fluffy midriff, all as the door opens from a nearby restaurant. The boy Kikila has been found by his father Kokilila who escorts everyone inside, where he quickly asks forgiveness for this childish behavior, however after his mother hurt her back he has been expected to help in the tavern, and yet cannot but wander off to play. Upon hearing this explanation, the Golem quickly volunteers to wait tables, allowing both children to entertain themselves as they watch the efficiency of this new worker. Yet as Kikila listens to Somali’s story in how pleased she is to travel with Father, the boy raises a painful question: what will they do once the journey is over … to which she cannot give a credible answer.
As we watch the adventures of Somali and Father, the repercussion of last episode’s revelation is still fresh, giving more precedence to this stirring question raised by Kikila – what will they do after their journey is over. It is this painful finality which makes the young girl’s lack of a response all the more remorseful, knowing they cannot travel forever, especially as we learn his life is near an end. The resonances that most never think about is what makes this story so bittersweet, opening a new response for this normally cheerful girl in how she deals with this future possibility. However even as she must come to terms with what may come, it is the optimism of this child which makes the next episode all more hopeful as to see what answer she gives to us all.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll