Kyoukai no Kanata Episode 8 – That’s more I like it

Kyoukai no Kanata izumi
It's time.

Here’s the dark fantasy!
Kyoukai no Kanata Episode 8 Review
Beyond the Boundary Episode 8 Review
“Calming Gold”
“Nagi Ōgon”
(凪黄金)

You know what I wanted from this show from the start? Some actual dark fantasy animated by KyoAni. Slice of life was inevitable, but man did they screw up with the pacing and the comedy from the start. To be honest, I haven’t been excited about this show ever since before it aired. Guess what? The show’s got me excited now.

Kyoukai no Kanata Episode 8 Impressions

DAT’S HAWT.

Maybe not.

Man, where does he go if he needs to go to the washroom?

Sakura Inami sleeping

Kuriyama Mirai combing hair

HERE COMES THE DERP.

Sakura inami combing

Daaaamnn.. Doesn’t that hurt a lot?

He’s not reacting?! Mirai is in trouble.

Kyoukai no kanata moe

DAT DAT.

Uhh…

Kyoukai no kanata

A NEW RIVAL APPEARS.

CHALLENGER.

Ninomiya Shizuku sensei

NINOMIYA SENSEIIIIIII!!

Inami Sakura floating

O.O

She can transfer into a youmu too!

Damn…

Kanbara Yayoi

The Calm? Right. The Calm.

Mirai Kuriyama bunny

Ayaka: “KEIKAKU DOORI.”

This is why the internet is so amazing. Then again, I don’t think there are that many sites that show glasses- Uhh… Don’t ask me how I know that.

Yayoi Yacchan

Is it Christmas yet?

Ninomiya Shizuku ready

FIGHT.

Still better than Akihito.

From the first half of the episode, you’re probably wondering if I’ve lost my mind because the first half isn’t really all that different from how Kyoukai no Kanata has always progressed. BUT SHUT UP AND READ. (Okay, sorry, I just read the best thread ever and I’m a bit under the influence.) The addition of Sakura adds another layer to Mirai’s life, but other than her previous conflict about revenge, she’s going to be taking a backseat and is going to serve more as emotional support for Mirai. What this part offers is some build up to the second half of the episode where the dark fantasy aspects of the show start to shine. If you’ve seen Hyouka, then this would be the equivalent of the festival in that show where things pick up and become more interesting. In Hyouka, it is the mysteries, and in this show, it is the dark fantasy which is setting in place thanks to the highly suspicious character that is Miroku. It really is the calm before the storm, and while a lot of moments are forgettable, it does add a bit to the atmosphere, but who are we kidding? The second half of the episode is truly where this episode differentiates itself from all of the other episodes that have aired so far.

A SCENE FROM A REALLY BAD MOVIE.

… His stance makes it even more so.

So pretty :O

Fujima Miroku wheel destroyed

REKT.

What? Seriously? So, how does she not have any more mental scars related to this?

Dude.

Fujima Miroku pervert

STAY. AWAY. Holy shit.

HELL YES. HIROMI TO THE RESCUE.

WELP.

Nase Mitsuki onii-chan

DELICIOUS.

Nase Mitsuki pouting

DAT POUT INTO DAT HMPH.

Dem eyes.

Kanbara Akihito and Izumi

Stop doing such seductive things. You’re confusing the poor guy.

NO CONTEXT.

With this news about the Inami family trying to kill Mirai, we know that Izumi has some sort of plan. As a side note, it also brings some problems to Mirai as a character. Anyways, we know that the Nase family, or better yet, Izumi is looking over Akihito as well. With Mirai and Kanbara Akihito being two people with unusual powers, Izumi undoubtedly has a plan that puts everything together. What she did to Akihito is exactly the same as what she did to that girl in the beginning of the episode. I’m assuming that the soul, or the human side of the individual is removed or subdued as Ayaka guesses. By the end of the episode, his youmu side is awakening which means that Izumi is hoping to use that to combat this “Beyond the Boundary.” Just like how she stole the crystal from the Hollow Shadow, she’ll do the same here. Mirai is probably needed to subdue Akihito’s youmu side because her blood magic is extremely effective at it.

Ninomiya Shizuku kick

Weeeeee

Weeeeee

2FANCY4U.

Nase Izumi attack

STRONK.

She’s just going to pat your head and say nothing is wrong.

FUYUKAIDESU.

Sakura Inami smile

Kuriyama Mirai crying

Ehhhhh… Feels like nothing. They didn’t expand on everything well enough for me to care about the relationship between her and Akihito.

YOU’RE NOT DREAMING BRO.

Shindou Ayaka transformation

O SHI-

Shindou Ayaka youmu

OMAIGAWD IT’S NINE TAILS!!!

I don’t really bother mentioning how good the visuals are because… Well, it’s pretty damn obvious, but I’ll just mention it here. It’s pretty fucking awesome.

Fujima Miroku disturbing face

WHY DO YOU HAVE THAT KIND OF FACE? IT’S DISTURBING.

Dammit. You’re lucky it’s the Calm.

HEAD TO HEAD.

O DAMN LET’S GO!

Kanbara Akihito youmu

It’s time!

As the unknown conflict between the two sides continue, we have the exploration of Mirai’s feelings for Akihito. It’s not unnatural for Mirai to feel indebted to Akihito for how he has been around her. From the beginning, he’s been very accepting towards her, and that’s because he’s in somewhat of the same situation. As for Mitsuki and Hiromi, since they’ve been kept in the dark, they probably don’t know who that old man that Izumi is working for either. Part of Miroku’s plan is probably to stir unrest within the family itself and to take advantage of it when he can though it won’t be as easy because Hiromi knows that this is a common tactic to use against a powerful family. Currently, because Izumi is such a mystery, I can only guess that she’s acting in her own self interest. Then again, she may also very well be protecting Hiromi and Mitsuki from something as well. Admittedly, who to really root for is quite a conundrum as we know barely anything from either side. I just hope there is no simple answer that would make one side “good” and another side “evil” as that’d just be a boring approach.

Kyoukai no Kanata Episode 8 Review

Finally, we actually get to see proper usage of the setting and the ideas that this anime really has. The concept of youmu, the two main characters who are different from everyone else, the conflicts between two powers, and the mysteries everywhere in between are the things I wanted to see from the very beginning, and while it’s been a disappointing first half, it’s great that they are utilizing these ideas now. The first thing that attributes to this episode’s quality is the dilution of the silliness that is the humor. The first half does still hold the amount that we are used to which isn’t all too great, but the second half focuses mainly on the more serious side of things. Not only does this give the show a more definite direction with a main objective now very clear, it’s also a lot more interesting as they are having two mysterious characters, Izumi and Miroku, fight head to head.

Well, what about the episodes three and four? Didn’t they explore these aspects as well? Well, yes, but they didn’t use it well. The whole conflict with the Hollow Shadow is just about Mirai’s desire for revenge so that she can overcome her past. The problem is that firstly I didn’t really care about her at all, and the second problem is that her problems with her past, and Akihito’s problems did not have good build up and are not well expanded upon. The difference is that this time it’s not just about Akihito and Mirai. Yes, they are going to be essential, but more interesting characters such as Izumi and Miroku are taking up some of the screen time to build up the tension, and they are awesome at it. Moreover, I didn’t find the dialogue cringe-worthy this time around either. The “You’re unpleasant” lines can be a bit unpleasant at times, but overall, it’s acceptable enough.

I’m still not satisfied with Mirai’s development especially with how they revealed that the Inami family was out to kill her. With how Kyoukai no Kanata has progressed so far, it’s getting more apparent that this show quite bad at developing characters, and tackling the more serious side of such developments. Mirai’s development feels half-assed with easy resolutions to serious problems that are not supposed to be that easy to solve. I’ll give Akihito some more time before I judge him too harshly as this arc will probably develop him some. Regardless, this show’s execution of the internal character conflicts and the resolution of such conflicts are sub-par at best. However, Kyoukai no Kanata can make up for this by having these interesting mysteries surrounding Izumi and Miroku while expanding upon exactly what youmu, and “Beyond the Boundary” are. I am not sure how long this arc will last, but for the sake of this show, I really hope it is until the end of the season as it’s probably best if this show ends with a bang dark fantasy style. I don’t want there to be a few filler episodes to end this off. That would be a terrible waste of this arc’s potential.

Beyond the Boundary Wallpaper

NO SPOILERS PLEASE!!!

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  • Ian Porterfield

    KyoAni getting more favorable than SHAFT from the eyes of Entravity?! Hell has Frozen over! O_O

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      I don’t judge anime purely based on studios. Anyways, while this episode is pretty good, or at least the second half is, it’s still not that great. It’s a good start, but they need to end strong to make it truly count. I wouldn’t say I’m favoring Kyoukai no Kanata more than Monogatari by any stretch of the imagination.

  • zztop

    I did hear that most of the anime’s story was loosely adapted from the 1st volume and a rough draft of the 2nd volume(3 volumes currently exist in Japan).

    Also, if you think Sakura is not meshing well, turns out she’s an anime-original character. Together with Sweet Potato the shade pet and Ai.

    An alternative translation of this ep could also be ‘Golden Lull’, where 凪, nagi, can translate as ‘lull’.

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Yep, I heard that too. They had to stuff in a lot of original material, and that may be part of the reason why things haven’t been flowing well.

  • ⓑⓐⓑⓨ◎ⓢⓝⓐⓚⓔ

    Totally agree! This episode is way better than the previous ones. This is what I expect it to be, and I’m so happy to see Kanbara-kun in different postures (that doze at the station, to be exact). Even though he’s my bias, but I don’t quite like it when he’s totally freaked out about MEGANE.

    I think the last two episodes have nice hooks that keep me waiting excitedly for the next episode.
    It is so sad that the first half isn’t good enough for most people who drop the show after 2 or 3 episodes.
    Thank you for your review and funny screenshots. See you again when the next episode is out!

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Honestly, I can’t blame the people who dropped this after the three episode rule. The show had nothing new to offer, and the execution was totally off. If they can do well with this next arc, then maybe enduring the first half will be worth it.

      Thanks for reading my review!

  • sonicsenryaku

    Lets get this out of the way…in terms of action choreography, this one was the best.n most prettiest of all the eps thus far…again my only gripe with this series is that it tells us to.feel things instead of making it happen organically…if that wanst the case, with the pretty action this would actually would b a riveting show. I see what the creators r trying to pull off so.I give then the benefit of the.doubt but I wish it did deliver on those poignant emotional moments. From the look of things, this series is getting slightly better at dat side of things but it still needs improvement. And don’t worry engraved…this arc is taking up the rest of the series. This is the true basis of the LN material even though it’s still being mixed with original material

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Exactly. Many shows try to say instead of express which is why they fall into cringe-worthy cliche lines. The reason why I wanted a dark fantasy from KyoAni is because of their animations, so if they just do decently story-wise, I’d be happy enough. If this is taking up the rest of the season then that’s awesome!

  • Chechebureche

    Totally agree with you! As what you’ve said in the past, KyoAni makes a way. :)

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      KYOANI FINDS A WAY… for now… Hopefully they can keep it up!

  • MgMaster

    Well,Mirai & Akihito are pretty much the weakest aspect of KnK.Mitsuki & Hiromi should’ve been the main characters.IMO,the Nase family is pretty interesting.

    Also,Sakura > Mirai in both looks & personality.Imagine her grown up!

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      Mirai and Akihito are indeed very weak characters. Mitsuki and Hiromi would be an improvement, but that’d depend on how they handle their characters in the long haul in the main character role.

      Haha, Akihito would be happy with Sakura because of her willingness to take up the MEGANE.

  • Heizeru

    After Attack on Titan, this is the second anime series I’ve ever followed (any anime I’ve ever watched was always completed), and also a re-introduction to the anime world as I haven’t watched anime for so long. Because of this, I didn’t know what to expect when I first started watching KNK.

    I’ve been reading your reviews this whole time and I’ve got to say, you’re right on par with a lot of these things. I’m so used to being lured over by what the anime looks like generally that I never really thought much about details like how character development occurs and the storyline, etc. until I’ve read your reviews. I look at KNK in a new light now and while I’m still easily entertained (yes, I admit that I was pretty drawn in by the “WTF?” factor in episode 6), I’m not offended by any of your posts ’cause you’re right.

    I wish KyoAni took the time to develop Mirai’s character and story because I was drawn in by the dark fantasy element from the trailer, in contrast to the cute art that reminded me so much of K-ON!. The humor makes me laugh (it doesn’t take a lot to make me laugh), but too much of it in the inappropriate times makes it look like they’re trying too hard. It makes me want to go to the KyoAni people and say… stuff. :P Keep it in the dark fantasy with a touch of slice of life, not the other way around, KyoAni, you made it look from the trailer that it was the former.

    Sorry. I really needed to get that out. Anyway, keep reviewing, you’ll have at least one reader! ;)

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      I was like that not too long ago too. While it’s good to hold some firm judgment of your own, it’s also very important to have fun when watching shows as well even if they may not be that great. As much as I criticize shows, I still very much enjoy watching those shows. It’s important to not be leaning too much on one side.

      Thanks for reading my review!

  • Flaiboy

    Fun episode – I always like when the shows get more complex. Again, I’m not concerned about the character development or the balance of plot elements. I’m sure it will still be an entertaining ride.

    I always find it interesting and somewhat humorous how we (me included) view an anime about unworldly powers being wielded by unworldly characters in unworldly scenarios against unworldly enemies and yet still expect there to be “normal” things that we can relate to such as conflict resolution and character growth . . . as if there is anything “normal” we can point to in the show. Apart from being set in current time and space there is nothing here that I can relate to, and yet I saddle myself with expectations that the characters will behave and react as I would in this relatively mundane real life existence. Go figure.

    Also, between the release that you screen-shot, Entrav, and the one I watched I’m struck with how different the translations were. Makes me curious as to how my impression of the show would change if I should watch a different interpretation of the dialog.

    • http://www.entravity.com/ Entrav

      You have an interesting point there. However, you have to remember that while the fantasy aspects is something we don’t really know in reality, it is still created by human beings. As such, they more or less are similar to us, and they will add “normal” things in there. I mean, it may be in a different setting and all that, but it’s still ultimately about human beings made by human beings. And I think even if you can’t refer to it in reality, you have a relative point with other dark fantasy shows. If we haven’t seen anything like this before, then it’d be much more difficult to critique, but that’s not the case as the genre has been explored quite a bit in other mediums as well.

      The subs widely differ at times, and I’ve found Crunchyroll’s subs to be fairly solid overall. However, it’s just a problem with timing for other fan sub groups as I like to get some reviews out as soon as possible. I love UTW’s subs as their translations never disappoint, and their typesetting is great. Though, for other sub groups, it depends as sometimes they do well, other times they are fairly far off. I’m sure it’ll change the experience by quite a bit, but then again nowadays none of the subs are absolutely horrendous like they were many years ago which made the experience quite ridiculous.