Okay, so this episode didn’t reveal the secret of Number Six. Instead, it went for character building. And it did that well.
My biggest surprise was at how much detail was put into Shion’s mother: I just thought that she was one of the token parents who was just set to disappear after the second episode. Here though, they went into her past, how she’s doing and had Shion contact her though Nezumi’s mice. Beyond that, we learned that Nezumi refused to talk about himself, but there were tons of hints to his character (and again a ton of hints at how his character change), the dog girl got some depth and overall this series still upholds its standards of pushing its story forward.
What I especially like here is how every episode so far has been significantly different in terms of themes and focus. This episode takes a look at the characters and the setting in a completely different way and it’s consistently changing and pushing its characters into different situations. With 22 episodes this really has the potential to become a classic. With 11 episodes it will probably be a very engaging series with a very open ending.
The animation also was really well done in this episode. There were very little still frames and a ton of movement, the background art was really well drawn, but also the people and dogs in the background were really well designed. Overall the question of the series with the best visuals is a tough one this season, unlike last Spring where the X-Men very convincingly took that award. In terms of fluidity and movement there’s Blood-C, in terms of consistency there’s Penguin-Drum, in terms of extravagance there’s Dantalian no Shoka and in terms of attention to detail and designs there’s this series.
Rating: ** (Excellent)