Denji and the rest of the new team are still trapped in the hotel. They try everything but can’t find a way out. The devil that traps them offers a contract. Will they take the bait?
This episode has a lot more world-building than the previous ones. We learn a little more about the rules of the contracts and the obligations involved. We also learn that Denji's reputation precedes him. The devils seem fearful of his blades.
Outside of world-building, there is a lot of character development. The way the characters interact with each other and the way they behave, given their current circumstances, reveal a great deal about them.
Denji proves himself to be level-headed in times of crisis. He’s the pillar that people can rely on for strength when the chips are down. And at the end of the day, he sets a great example for Power to follow. She needs a good role model, based on the way she behaves.
Power is a pathological liar, generally finds human suffering hilarious and doesn't lift a hand to help a teammate unless she gets something out of it. But she’s instant comedy. So maybe we let some of that pass. This viewer believes Power has a shot at becoming a better person. She even rationalizes a minute benefit for herself, so she can save someone's life. But she has a long way to go in her development. Perhaps having Denji and Aki in her life will be a huge benefit.
Aki is a leader. He never wavers. He’s always cool, calm and collected, even when his life is on the line. And he’s the first to sacrifice himself for his friends and comrades. He thinks of others before himself. And that’s what a true leader does.
This viewer never thought he would be making this statement. But Himeno fails as a leader. She panics when the team is pressed, and her favorite person is threatened. Her coolness goes straight out the window. In that moment, her ghost arm has the same strength as her inner fortitude, which is zero. On top of everything else, she's willing to sacrifice one team member for another that she likes more. Whatever happened to fairness?
Arai is a stale character with no intestinal fortitude. Seriously, he's about as bland as the BRAT diet. This viewer can’t think of a single interesting thing about him. Should he fall, he would not be missed. Makima should fire him if he lives through this current calamity.
Kobeni is terrible as well. Frankly, this viewer thinks that she is in the wrong line of work and is a danger to herself and others in life. But perhaps they accepted her in Public Safety because her powers might be insane. This viewer isn’t sure of what the vetting process is for that department. But for someone as weak-minded as Kobeni to be admitted, her power must be godlike. That is the hope.
The animation for this series never ceases to amaze me. The visual effects are insane. The way they bring this monster to life is incredible. Coupling that with the detailed expressiveness on the faces of characters like Kobeni and Arai accentuates the horror elements of the show.
But the icing on the cake that the artists and animators provide includes a perfectly pink skyline, a burning cigarette and the welt of a slap on a character’s face.
The writers, artists and animators have done it again. They’ve managed to give us another incredible episode that’s even better than the last. How long can they keep this up?