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Well, I can’t say that I didn’t expect this story to go the way it did, but it was still sad to watch. That being said, I do like how this arc has highlighted Hyakkimaru’s compassion while simultaneously suggesting a darker layer to it. We finally get a sense of what his demonic aura actually is, which adds an overarching question to the series. I’m a lot more curious to see how things turn out now.
It’s nice to learn more about Tahomaru as well, even if we don’t yet know what role he’ll play in the story. His entitled behavior is annoying, but his trust issues make sense given the guarded nature of his parents. I am curious about his mother’s thoughts on the matter, though. She doesn’t seem to resent Tahomaru, so I don’t know what to say.
I’m still not sure I understand why Hyakkimaru is in danger of becoming a monster. Is it just because he has become such a killing machine as a matter of necessity? My guess would have been that he absorbs part of the demons who took his organs when he regains them. However, the blind man makes it sound like the original loss of his organs is what tainted his soul.
I liked this conversation between Dororo and Mio a lot. It’s nice to see Dororo recognize that both perspectives, her mother’s and Mio’s, have their own benefits and risks. After seeing her struggle with how to approach Mio throughout the episode, it’s a surprisingly well-thought conclusion.
The episode did a good job on focusing on the risk Hyakkimaru was taking to distract away from incoming massacre at the end. That being said, the hints were definitely there, with the hidden soldier in the bush and the soldiers following behind Mio in this scene. However, it does make me wonder why Take couldn’t see the men behind her in this scene, though.
The impact of this scene was impressive. The fact that Hyakkimaru is just learning to use his voice makes it so much more gut-wrenching when he cries out in anguish. And having his first real word be the name “Mio” is a nice touch.