Episode Rating: Unrated.
The episode begins with a flashback to the past when Kon first met Yakou in his lifetime. Awkward and blunt transition into the present day, Harutora, Suzuka, Touji and Kon are still escaping from Zenjirou’s raven familiar’s pursuits. Suzuka threatens to bring Harutora back to life by sacrificing her own life if Harutora doesn’t return safely. Harutora and Kon split off from the group. They’re intercepted by Kagami. The entire battle with Kagami was mainly for the plot purpose of unravelling Kon’s significance to the plot. She forcibly breaks her internal spirit power seals in order to protect Harutora from Kagami and Shaver’s advances. In the end, she revives her memories as Hishamaru as well as those of Yakou. Although Harutora loses an eye during the fray, he’s more or less regained all his powers and recollections of the past. Meanwhile, Ohotomo and Zenjirou stop fighting, for some reason, when D arrives with Director Amami. All this is unexplained and just gets brushed aside as we see Harutora, Hishamaru and that other one armed guy. Natsume is returned to Harutora with Takiko’s apologies and the Taizan Fukun Ritual takes place. D becomes Ohtomo’s familiar in order to full return his favour. Touji and the others get a call from Suzu Saotome but nothing more. In the end, we see Natsume recovering in a big room. Harutora visits her. A quite confession happens… and we end with Harutora walking into the sunset on the street with his two followers.
Thoughts on the Episode:
Honestly this was NOTHING like what I expected. People keep telling me that the light novels are more ahead and bring out a more comprehensive story. The manga is apparently way behind and really the series feels like it’s just begun. Will there be a season 2? Maybe not because the anime is also apparently up to date with the light novels but can I say that as an anime, they could have potentially made a better ending to this? Because in all honestly, there was no real climactic showdown or battle. Natsume’s brought back in a pretty little sunrise ritual. Many are speculating the “sacrifice” that Harutora made in order to bring Natsume back. Also, Natsume is assumed not to be fully revived and to have dreamt that last scene with Harutora. As well, many forum-goers and readers are saying that Harutora, having been fully revived as Yakou leaves Natsume to find a way to bring her back fully as well as find a solution or fix whatever ritual he performed in his previous life which resulted in that massive spiritual disaster at the beginning. This episode was just the writers’ way of presenting Kon’s back story more or less which in my opinion should really have taken place much earlier. I mean, seriously, NO HINTS AT ALL… and then THIS HAPPENS:
Thoughts on the Ending:
Everyone is calling the ending bittersweet and tragic but romantic. I really think this ending is pretty half-assed. Yes, it leaves much room for speculation and a lot of room for the potential for a second season but many of the side characters were pretty unresolved in this issue. Other than the fact that Natsume was brought back alive (thank the anime gods she was), Touji, Suzuka, Tenma, Kyouko, Ohtomo, Amami and even D were not given adequate endings to say the least. The most important two aspects was ONE- Natsume came back and TWO- Kon becomes badass. Questions- What did Amami say to Zenjirou to get him to stop fighting Ohtomo? What really happened to Amami and how did he survive? What are Takiko’s true intentions? What happens to Ohtomo now? Why is Kagami so obsessed with Ohtomo? What are Saotome Suzu’s intenstions? Is Harutora really still Harutora or is he mostly Yakou now? Or have they merged?
Tokyo Ravens had its ups and downs. I loved it at the beginning, hated it when it became boring high school filler, cried when action became tragedy and now, I’m just kind of disappointed with the way that the ending wrapped up. I’m so uncomfortable with all this. Yes, Natsume and Harutora’s feelings were reconciled but not at all their relationship. Where is Harutora going? What does Yakou intend to do? What was the problem with his first ritual? They made such a huge deal of Takiko and her familiars but in the end they just HANDED Natsume back to Harutora. AFTER ALL THIS ACTION AND SO MANY EPISODES – AT LEAST FIGHT OR SOMETHING GEEZ!
I am not usually bothered by endings even though they can be sort of confusing and deus ex machine like in Kyoukai no Kanata or just random like in D-Frag but I really expected A LOT MORE from Tokyo Ravens after twenty three episodes of build-up. I had high hopes for this, really. Even if the light novels and manga had not caught up to a substantive or conclusive ending, at least MAKE SOMETHING UP like in Black Butler or Fullmetal Alchemist. I am so incensed at how they handled this series finale that unless there is a season two, the overall rating for this show will stand fairly controversial.
I would be slamming the show too much if I left it at that. Tokyo Ravens more stronger aspects was in animation and ultimately in character development even though the pace of development is clumsy at times. Each character, however minor, had a little time in the spotlight to develop within the plot. I would not call this plot wholly character driven, rather, I would say that the plot is really quite detached from the characters in that you don’t see the characters immersed in the action development at every moment of the story. There’s a lot of filler and at many times, the school aspects are unnecessary and fairly redundant in the greater scheme of things. I think if they spent less time focusing on the Omnyo Prep parts and more efforts to answering the questions regarding the Omnyo history between the professional exorcists, there would be less holes in the story at the end. This episode is generally left unrated because of all the speculation and confusion but here’s my rating on the end…
Series Conclusion Rating as of now: 7/10
Series Conclusion Rating with a season 2: 8/10 (That is, only if there really is MORE to the story)
What do you guys think? Please let me know in the comments. This is bothering me so much. I have so many more questions as a viewer and so many unresolved grievances as a reviewer. But after a long twenty-four weeks of Tokyo Ravens, we draw the series (or season 1) to a close.
What are you pondering today?