Flashback time! If there weren’t already enough reasons for a second season, then this episode added another one. Episode eight usually is the point for 13-episode series to start building up for their climaxes. If there’s going to be a flashback, it’s most often used as a revelation of an important mystery. This episode instead chooses to give more depth to a set of three characters: Kuchiha, Shamon, and one of the monks that works at the temple of the princess.
Especially the latter is a clear indication that this series is aiming beyond thirteen episodes. Heck, I never could have guessed that that guy was so important to have his own background story. It took me a long while to figure out who the heck he was again, but it seems he was the one who guided Toki, Kon and Kuchiha around the temple when they arrived, and explained their customs a bit. To think that he actually was more than a handy way to give background on the temple. The director is no idiot, so he wouldn’t have given background to such an obscure character at this point if he knew that it would be a pointless waste of time.
This episode also shows how Shamon came to adopt Kuchiha. The village she lived in used to shun her because of the huge demon in her. That’s why she’s always so gloomy when this demon gets mentioned. It’s nothing new, but it’s good to see this with more detail. I also really like Shamon; he’s a strong character, and yet he’s down to earth and has a sense of humour.
Overall, this episode was very enjoyable. The cast is really showing that it can be great, even without a heavy atmosphere. Oh, and I like it when an anime doesn’t feature its main character at all for an entire episode as well.