At the end of Kill la Kill 9 I wondered a few things. Mainly, is this going to be the format for the foreseeable future? Every week Ryuuko takes on another high-ranking student council member, she gets beaten up for most of the episode while we get the odd side scene about the bad guy’s background and whatever, then comes up with a strategy, or counterargument to the bad guys’ philosophy, or both, and wins. That will last three more weeks and I believe this show’s running 25 episodes. Even if you add in an extra episode or two to further develop a villain you still won’t get there. Besides, it’s too predictable, anyway. So what we’re basically waiting for now is the twist in the plot that will send things out of control. As for episode 9–predictable. I’m a little surprised that they’re going straight to battle two without any fuss, since we don’t know much about the new villain. Expect lots of flashbacks, or maybe that plot twist.
Coppelion 9 wasn’t all that ridiculous. Plans are made, forgotten resources (the granny) come back, seeds are sewn for the big finish. Not bad. The only nutty thing was the pregnant lady asking if the team could rescue a 1st Division soldier, the baby’s father, who really isn’t all that bad. Oh, and Aoi just happened to meet him while she was captive. How they’re going to recognize him when they’re all wearing gas masks is not explained, but it’s a problem the show’s had all along. It’s too hard to care about victims when you can’t even see their faces. The rest of the episode is about putting the plan into operation, that is, reviving an elevated train and using that to get to the rendezvous point, okay, that’s pretty ludicrous too. Meanwhile, the wacky Ozu sisters are back, purely evil and insane characters that make the legitimate, moral questions Haruto asks pointless, but whatever battle they’ve got in store now will wait until next week.
Galilei Donna feels like a filler episode, or maybe a “Kyoto in the winter” travelogue. The only story business worth speaking about was Anna’s continued treachery and her growing conscience, but these things were already known about and expected; we’re just waiting for the other shoe to drop. On the other hand, it’s nice that they were able to find one of those sketches without any bloodshed or sacrifice. The scenes with gramps were disgustingly touching. But what got me slamming my head against the table, Kuroko-style, was that the Goldfish was flying around like nothing had happened! I mean, it was trashed last week. It got shot at and fins and rudders flew off, and it crashed in the frozen tundra somewhere, and this week, almost first thing, we see it floating happily in the sky, maybe singing a little song to itself, like nothing had happened to it. Argh.
So Kill is routine, Coppelion and Galilei are more-or-less inane, it’s up to Kyoukai no Kanata to raise the bar for this viewing day, and it does.
We get three fights going on early. Izumi is squaring off against Miroku over Akihito, though we’re not certain why, yet, just that the boy has something special about hm, er, apart from being half demon, that is. Meanwhile, Hiroomi and Mitsuki are battling some big monster thing, but I’m not sure why. Finally, Mirai is rushing to be at Akihito’s bedside before he turns into … whoops, too late! This all happens on rooftops, building lots, and in the sky, and while we switch around we get a little more idea of what’s going on and why they’re fighting.
And then all the scenes are done with, with only the monster being defeated. Akihito’s gone off and others go to find him until they stop because it’s making little sense to them. Izumi delivers the big line, not really a surprise, but it obviously comes as a shock to Mirai, who had once managed to calm Akihito out of his demon-ness, and everything more or less stands still while we get some backstory. That the SWW and the Nase’s don’t like each other much is already obvious, but why they’re fighting over Akihito was still a mystery, at least to our young heroes who have been kept out of the loop. It boils down to him being actually really really powerful and nasty, and if his demon side prevails, he’s going to get nastier yet. Wait, that explains why you might want him dead, but both sides seem to have additional plans for his corpse. I’ve been rooting for the Nase side, not least because Miroku’s such an ass, but I’m no longer trusting their motives as much. At least not Izumi’s. Happily for us, neither do Mitsuki and Hiroomi now.
Meanwhile, Mirai finds her quarry and crazy demon, would-be boyfriend, and sets about killing him. What’s surprising about this scene, well, one thing, (the usual dazzling visual effects are no longer surprising, just great to look at again) is that she looks quite capable of doing it on her own. Hiroomi had mentioned before that only she could do it, though I can’t remember why, but I didn’t expect to see her have little trouble slipping through his attacks and inflicting damage on her own. But more surprising still is that she is resolved. Yeah, we had a crying in the bathtub scene earlier where she got sorrow out of the way, and there are a couple of times during the fight when they cheat and show us the real Akihito face behind the train track one, causing her to waver, but those are just lapses. Mainly she is relentless in what she is trying to do, even removing her glasses before the assumed final strike, maybe to cause the Akihito inside less pain. A very good scene in a very good episode.