There’s nothing fancy about Kamisama Dolls, really. It’s just a good, solid straight-ahead anime with a really interesting plot and pretty involving characters. The take on the mecha genre is interesting, and the blend of sci-fi and mythological elements is classic but still fresh. It’s a very entertaining watch.
The headlines this week were many, among them that Kyouhei finally snapped. What set him off was when Aki mentioned that Hibino looked like “Sensei” – the woman who’d told Kyouhei that he should be friends with Aki forever. Obviously we don’t know the whole backstory there, but in a flash Kyouhei’s boring, nice-guy mask was off and he was beating on Aki mercilessly. After the latter, bloodied but unfazed, made his escape Kyouhei decided to punch a stone wall for a while until his knuckles were bleeding. There’s never been any question that Kyouhei had a dark and complicated past and that Aki was connected to it, but this was the purest proof yet.
All this was taking place just outside Kuuko’s apartment, where she’d dragged Aki after his losing encounter with Kochirou and Kirio (uwah, too many “K” names here) last episode. Aki may have nut-job cred, but it seems to me that Kuuko can hold her own with anybody in the insanity game. She stripped Aki, tied and gagged him, and then when he woke up shot him with an air gun and tazed him. All in the pursuit of proof on the “scarecrows” she thinks she’s seen. Her obsession with weird science is so total that you almost have to admire it, but she’s in way over her head here. She’s an effective character but I certainly don’t find her remotely likeable – she is, as Aki called her, a “crazy bitch” – and not in a good way.
The other huge development was the big reveal of Kirio’s face. Indeed he does appear to be some sort of evil twin to Utao – at least if he’s to be taken at face value. He certainly considers himself a brother to Kyouhei and Utao, and calls himself Utao’s “Seki”. Now that’s interesting, as he has a Kekkashi of his own, “Takemikazuchi”. Kyouhei definitely recognizes Takemikazuchi, but not Kirio it seems. All we know of the boy is what he’s told us, but he’s clearly linked closely with the Kuga and with Kyouhei and especially Utao, his “other half”. Kobayashi Yumiko is having a blast playing him as an evil shota, but I suspect there’s more to the story than that.
That’s a recurring theme here. The series is excellent at meting out nuggets of interesting information a little at a time, provoking more questions each time it provides an answer. Right now we’ve been told an awful lot, yet we’re really left mostly with unknowns – and that’s the mark of a really intricate plot. I like the way this thing is coming together, and while nothing is spectacular thus far, other than the hiccup in the first half last week it’s all been really good. I’m especially fascinated by Aki, who I still see as a tragic victim rather than a true villain. I think we’ve been set up – set up by seemingly obvious events and by Kyouhei’s own prejudicial view. My gut is telling me this is going to be one of those “up is down” series where most of the truth is just the opposite of what it looks like, and who the heroes and villains are is not going to be clear until the very end.