Hajime no Ippo Rising director Shun Kudo handled a very pivotal episode here that could either make Garo really good or end up having a weak ending. This episode left tons out in the open to the viewer– is Ema dead? How about German because we don’t see his death on screen. With only 1 episode left I’d say Kudo directed a well-polished cliffhanger here– Ximenia bears German’s child which makes me wonder if the feature film will focus on that character. Is this intentional build-up for more?
The animation throughout this entire episode is fantastic– Octavia’s apocalyptic design brings this show back artistically to how this series had reminded me of D.Gray-man. Its grim perspective on humans’ deepest darkest emotions with a fantasy twist– Horrors are created from the melancholic feelings of a person’s soul. We saw that a ton in the first half of Garo where Leon and German vanquished Horrors without a second thought that they could save the people succumbed to them.
Octavia is a great representation of a person that lost something or someone and was taken in by Mendoza: ultimately being manipulated as a tool for his desires. Even her design screams the sexual representation that this anime series focuses on with its female characters. Recently, I’ve been re-watching Kemonozume by Masaki Yuasa and can see similarly with Garo how pertinent it can be when a series handles sex: bridging a gap between genders and how mature sequences can motivate its characters further along. This is a big reason why I like this series– it has been about passing on your genes as a Makai Knight and this show doesn’t glaze over the fact on how that is done.
OVERALL IMPRESSION: 9/10