Title: Garo: The Crimson Moon [MyAnimeList]
Episode: 03 [Curse]
Aired: October 23rd, 2015
Watched: October 26th, 2015
October 26th, 2015
Hello there, everybody!
Are you all pretty well? I think that I am. There will be about 8 days left when you read this, to the end of Nanowrimo, and I don’t know how many words I’ll have written by then… let’s hope I’m close to 60k words? Hahaha. At any rate, please be aware of the spoilers in this post, and let’s begin!!
This episode begins in the Palace of Light people, with Michinaga-sama and the other dude who seems a little bit infatuated with Seimei – I’ve yet to learn his name [upon re-watching, I’ve found out: his name is Yorinobu]. The lord, Michinaga, announces to Yorinobu that his daughter will be entering the court as an imperial bride soon, and thanks to that union, he’ll become a father-in-law of the Heavenly Emperor, and so, the mansion that he’s building needs to show off this new status. To this, an attendant (some dude) says that if the “Vice-Minister overhears, you will gain more unnecessary resentment“. Michinaga replies that this is actually his most humble action so far. They’re interrupted by Haruaki-sama, who seems to be really knowledgeable of dark energies and is pretty highly ranked, for Yorinobu to acknowledge with a curt bow, but Michinaga to not really face. [Note: I couldn’t find a real and clear picture of the symbol on his back, but it resembles the symbols that appear when Seimei uses her abilities]. Haruaki informs them that he senses dark energy, and indeed, while they were speaking, they notice a dog licking a rock, and die a horrible death right in front of them.
Upon digging under the rock, they discover an urn which contains curses. Haruaki concludes that someone is cursing Michinaga (maybe the Vice Minister?). Michinaga simply smirks, which begs to wonder if he really is aware of the threats going on around him at all…
Meanwhile, Raikou is having a nightmare: that he’s being attacked from all sides by Horrors, and that, no matter how much he pleads, he cannot get Seimei – completely absent – to pull the seal off of Zaruba so that he can transform and defeat the Horrors. It’s quite apparent that he’s quite concerned about this: that his abilities to summon the Golden Armor is restricted the way it is. The moment he wakes up, he asks Seimei to get the armor off of him, to which she refuses in so many words [only wanting to remove the seal when a Horror is near, and not before, and certainly, not permanently], tricking him into believing that she was hurt by his actions, but fails to produce the tears that could show him her sadness [he counters by saying that he can scarcely believe women now, due to her raising him and being dishonest with him all the time].
Upon leaving to get some air, Raikou is shocked to find the “police” at their doorstep. They announce that they were sent to find, capture and investigate the omnyou user, Seimei, and, still pissed off at her for tricking him into caring for her, Raikou lets them take her, warning them that she’s a trickster. I wondered if they were even outraged that she wasn’t wearing clothes that are… decent, of the time? I mean, I don’t know the fashion code of the time, but isn’t it pretty indecent to wear such clothing? Or are they just used to it? We haven’t seen anyone else wear clothes that she wears throughout the series so far…
Upon further investigations, Michinaga‘s people [mostly Haruaki, actually, but you can see that he’s always present, and shows no expression whatsoever upon discovering those items, whereas the other people seem either surprised or outright terrified; I guess they didn’t think that, being rich, they could ever be the target of curses…? [I’m being sarcastic] I mean, what have they done except freaking ignoring the needs of the poorer people?! Not only that, but he does sort of have some kind of control over the Palace of Light, too] find, scattered throughout the palace, relics or dolls filled with curses made for his family. Because of this, Michinaga has decided to capture all of the onmyou users (people who are payed to make these curses).
Or so Seimei‘s informant, Izumi Shikibu, tells Kintoki and Raikou when they come to ask her what’s happening. Raikou thinks that it’s obnoxious, that Seimei isn’t an onmyouji, but a Makai Alchemist. While the informant says she’s not aware of why she joined the alchemists, Seimei is the princess of the Abe family and has inherited their powers to use onmyou, which they use to protect the Light Palace from disasters (like Horrors, so technically, Seimei‘s choice to become a Makai Alchemist seems pretty legit to me, actually). Seimei‘s powers are such that, according to Izumi, they surpass even Kamono Yasunori‘s powers. I wonder who that is, and if they’ll appear later on.
On the bridge that they seem to enjoy just hanging by with Seimei, Raikou recaps what’s happening. The Light Palace is restricted to only nobles and people who run the country. Horrors are even said not to be able to go in [then I wonder how Seimei became aware of Horrors in the first place, what if she’d witnessed darkness inside of the Light Palace and decided to leave in order to learn ways to defeat that darkness? Or maybe she saw that luxury isn’t for everyone and decided to go help the poorer people survive the darkness?].
Elsewhere, the Scarred Man (still trying to learn his name here) is meeting with his master, who seems to be aware of the situation as well, but adds that Michinaga‘s curses and his hunt for onmyou users is a decoy to capture him. Since the Light Palace is usually only a place that nobles are allowed to enter, Scarred Man‘s master says it’ll be interesting to see what’s behind the gates? Scarred Man – or Ashiya Douman – lets himself get captured by the police.
It’s revealed to us through two law enforcers that they believe Michinaga‘s bringing these commoners and these people whom he sees fit, despite his position as a simple minister, is abusing his power, and I must say that I agree. This guy who had this beautiful girl in his palace in the first episode isn’t even sad that she died at the hands of a sculptor?! Really?! I wouldn’t be surprised if he turned out to be a villain in some subplot. The other law enforcer replies that that might be true, but they are under the master, who’s head of the Fujiwara family, and they can’t do anything even if they think this is wrong [I wonder if I’m focusing on these politics and that it won’t even matter, like in High Society].
Yorinobu is surprised to see Seimei caught among the onmyouji, and seems too shocked to help her when she pleads that there’s a mistake. To him, these onmyouji are scammers [he even calls them scum, that’s the extent of his disgust, I guess?! If he becomes friends with Raikou and Seimei in the next episodes, will he change his mind?] who place curses on people only to gain money, and I guess that could be true for many of these, but he’s surprised that someone who was high born like Seimei – as far as he knows, anyway, from seeing her and hearing the other nobles talk about her – would resort to using onmyou outside of protecting the Palace of Light from potential threats.
Meanwhile, instead of thinking of ways to save Seimei from being unjustly jailed, Raikou and Kintoki have an appointment with this era’s Watchdog Center, who reveals to them that Zaruba was sealed with his armor, and that the only person who can release this seal permanently is Seimei, and that they can’t do anything about it. Not only that, but contrarily to Raikou‘s beliefs, the Watchdog Center doesn’t believe that Michinaga [they call him the Minister of the Left]’s curses are their business, and says that curses made by the onmyouji have a placebo effect on people who believe in it. I do remember that the Watchdog Center mentioned in the first season that Makai Knights simply don’t meddle in the affairs of humans. Raikou, however, believes that if humans are to be harmed in any way, it’s their affair.
Kintoki reminds us of what we’ve established in the previous episode: if someone wears the Golden Armor for too long, they lose themselves and become beasts, becoming unable to aid the people they were supposed to help. It reminds me of Claymore a lot, about how, if they use too much of their powers, the warriors become demons who will kill and be hunted by other Claymores. Even though his soul was intact once Seimei released Raikou from the armor, to protect him from being consumed by the armor, Seimei placed a seal on his armor and made him hers. I wonder what this means…? Can I still ship them even if she’s older than him by a lot? Kintoki says that perhaps she did that to protect him or to protect his soul, but then dismisses the idea, because it seems impossible [maybe it’s possible…!! Maybe she does like him!! BUT THEN HE WAS JUST A CHILD?! WOULDN’T THAT SORT OF COUNT FOR PEDOPHILIA?! I HAVE SUPER CONFLICTED FEELINGS ABOUT THIS]. Nevertheless, because he knows that he cannot remove the seal without Seimei, Raikou decides that they can’t afford her to be imprisoned, especially if there are Horrors that might show up. And so, Kintoki and he begin planning to take their Makai Alchemist out of the prison that Michinaga has thrown all onmyouji into.
That night, while many onmyouji are protecting the Light Palace, Seimei is still with the other unlawful onmyouji, and witnesses the Scarred Man being brought forward to Michinaga. Ashiya Douman [that’s a name that’s passed on from master to apprentice, so does that mean that there’s been another one before his master, and another one? And how does Michinaga even know this?! Haruaki reveals to us that the previous Ashiya Douman was quite powerful at making curses] is almost flattered that Michinaga used the curses – yep, he reveals to the heroes as well as to Yorinobu a bit later on that Michinaga had placed these curses, which then became imbued with negative energy – like the death of the dog for example – in order to get a pretext to capture the onmyouji but more specifically: to find him. Haruaki believes that Ashiya put these curses on Michinaga because the Vice-Minister and Michinaga’s nephew, Korechika, paid him to do it [well looks like the politics caught up to us].
Raikou‘s plan of getting the onmyouji out of the jail was to smoke cow dung [poor Kintoki] into the jail, using the distraction to break the prison doors, take out the guards and free the others. Seimei seemed quite relieved that he finally came, choosing instead to state that he’s late in coming to get her [does this mean that she always knew he would come back for her? Well that makes sense, since she put a pretty powerful seal on Zaruba and he’ll always need her, because he’s “hers”]. It would have worked, too, if not for Yorinobu coming to arrest them. Instead of staying with Raikou, Seimei runs to Yorinobu‘s side and asks him to save her, using his ‘infatuation’ with her against him, I guess. With the two of them distracted by trying to stop one another, she heads to see what the Scarred Man is up to. I wonder if the fact that she didn’t want Raikou in the way of seeing Ashiya Douman means something? Could he be related to her? After all, she recognized him pretty quickly, too…?!
Abeno Haruaki calls Seimei, who arrives on the scene, by a name that she hasn’t heard in awhile and that she doesn’t want to be called: Kiyome, which is likely her name from when she was still a part of the Abe family. Michinaga chuckles and reveals to us that they’re actually grandfather and granddaughter. Seimei questions the fact that Ashiya Douman would confess to being commissioned by the Vice-Minister, and Ashiya says the same (after all, if he does so, Michinaga will have the power and proof to call this treason, and behead and end the Vice-Minister’s bloodline completely).
Douman reveals that the curses contain no power, but have a bunch of negative energy about them, which is what he plans to use to make a gate of darkness. Seimei reveals to us that the gate he speaks of is the gate that “connects Makai and this world”, so… the Horrors. Using the gathered curses, Douman opens a gate [remark: he opened a gate of darkness WITHIN the Light Palace!! This is a huge deal. Just like we’ve seen in the first episode, after all, the captain of the guards DID wonder if they would be safe at night, when the light is dimmer and can’t possibly provide them with any protection] and the Horrors scatter into the courtyard, following his orders of taking over the world and spreading darkness (more so than their fellow Horrors have in the past, that is). Yorinobu immediately places himself between the Horrors and Michinaga [I guess that even though he knows that Michinaga has done these horrible things in order to incarcerate his nephew, and stand at the height of his power and become the Vice Minister himself, he’s still going to do his duty to protect him? That’s… noble… but I wonder if he’ll change his alignment soon?] and Haruaki [whom Seimei is protecting, it’s hilarious that these two important people aren’t even flinching at the sight of such dangerous foes], while Raikou and Kintoki attempt to fight off some of them from the onmyouji.
…and fail, because Seimei hasn’t unsealed Zaruba yet. The Makai Alchemist tells Raikou they should leave, because they’re outnumbered anyway, but, like he said to the Watchdog Center, Raikou believes that he has to save these people, no matter what. When Kintoki tells her to release the seal, right before she does so, a Horror captures her, but she’s quickly freed by her grandfather and finally releases the seal on Raikou [that seal she does is the exact symbol that is upon Haruaki‘s robes, too! Does that mean that her seal is made by onmyou magic and that’s why the Watchdog Center can’t remove it, because it’s not simple alchemy at all? That would sort of makes sense, and wouldn’t that make her a super powerful Makai Alchemist, then? That she can wield onmyou powers and also alchemy that can defeat a few Horrors?], and makes a barrier between the biggest Horror [I guess that’s the only reason why she would do that? Is there are reason to making a barrier for him only and not for the other Horrors? Wouldn’t it have been better to make these barriers BEFORE they killed the unlawful onmyou users? Also: the barrier that she uses is also made out of the star-shaped symbol that her grandfather has on his robe… does this mean that only she can make these barriers, and not other Makai Alchemists?] and the Golden Knight, so that he can defeat them. Before they’re shielded and hidden from the humans, Raikou transforms in front of Yorinobu, who recognizes the Golden Armor almost immediately and cannot believe what he’s seeing. While he’s fighting the Horror, Seimei wants him to know and remember that there will be no end to Horrors. I guess she wants him to know that he can’t do the impossible, and that if he accepts this, then perhaps he won’t be as sad and crushed if and when he doesn’t succeed in saving people? Perhaps she really does care about him. To this though, he says that he’s a Makai Knight, and he protects people, as simple as that, and if she’s unhappy with his decision of helping people, then she should release him from the seal. The barrier breaks as Raikou defeats the Horror, even after it grows to inhumane height. His armor also leaves him almost as soon as the barrier drops around them, leaving Raikou breathless and panting. The armor really takes a toll on him when he uses it, which is something Ashiya Douman seems to take note of as he takes his time to vanish.
At the end of this whole adventure, Seimei is permitted to leave the premises once again, and Raikou and Kintoki are forgiven their actions of breaking the jail. Together, the trio sits probably by the bridge where they usually hang out at, and ponder on what they have learned so far. For Raikou, it’s mostly that her name is Kiyome and that she dislikes being called that [not only that, but she left the Abe family fairly young, and her grandfather probably felt bad that he was never really able to help her out when she did leave. I hope that piece of paper she kept will come in handy at some point, and that this old man’s not going to die. He adds that she shouldn’t forget where she comes from, her family]. He learns that she left the family because things are stifling at the palace, but he knows that she’s not telling him the whole truth. For Seimei, it’s that since she doesn’t want to remove the seal from him, the only possible way she can make that up to him is to never leave his side. She pulls him into a hug, and I think that it’s because she’s happy that he came to help her out in the end, even though he did learn of parts of her identity, which she seemed to have been wanting to keep hidden, in doing this [I wonder if Kintoki knew this, because we know that he’s been accompanying Seimei for awhile now and knows her well enough to know when she’s having crocodile tears or no. I wonder how they met, and if they only met because of their affiliation with the Makai people].
The final scene unveil to us with Yorinobu, who goes to visit his father, who’s resting in his room, wrecked with nightmares about Yorimitsu (who’s that?). After pleasantries, Yorinobu asks his father why the Golden Armor was in the possession of Raikou when it should be passed down from blood relatives in the Minamoto family. To this, his father just stares, paralyzed with the news that the Golden Armor has resurfaced.
I suspect that perhaps the father took the name of Minamoto for himself or something, and that he’s been disguising them as Minamotos, but they aren’t. Or perhaps they are indeed supposed to inherit of the armor, but that something happened and he thought the armor was cursed? Who knows? But I’m really hoping there’s no Leon vs Alfonso arc or rivalry here. Then again, it does seem like it’ll be like that…
All right, that’s it out of me this week!
See you all for the next episode!