[Review] Tokyo Ghoul Episode 8

This has been sitting in the drafts since the episode came out, but I’ve never gotten around to finishing it because school came and gave me a diarrhea of schoolwork I had to unload and clean up.

In any case, since the episodes came out, I probably won’t be making much predictions (and I won’t even go to TG:re and Root A). It should be noted that as I’m writing the review for each episode I have not watched the episodes that came after save for the first episode of Root A because yeah I’ve read the manga and I just want to know if the deviation looked good… yeeeah, we’ll get to that after I finish season 1’s episodes 8 – 12.

Notes:

1. This article comes from the perspective of someone who has read the manga.

2. I wouldn’t be critiquing the plot as much as I am going to comment on its progression.

3. Blue text usually indicates a topic change within a section.

4. Gray text, sometimes labeled as run-on note, are basically that–a no-punctuation ramble about whatever.

5. A spoiler among non-spoiler shit is like this for a reason. Don’t try too hard to read it if you don’t want to be spoiled.

6. If it wasn’t obvious from before, the manga scans I put up are butchered to fit what I’m trying to say. Everything is credited at the beginning.

Warnings: 

No spoiler warnings this time because it’s been a while since everything was released.

Gore and violence abound, especially since I’m using the bluray releases so yaaay no more censorship! But stay safe.

Release Watched: DameDesuYo
Screencaps taken from: DameDesuYo Release
Manga Scans: Twisted Hel Scans

Episode 8 – 円環 (Circular)

Before I begin, I have to say that the title of this episode fits the events of this arc perfectly.

Onto the actual episode, it begins with Mado laying out a trap of his own after figuring out that Rabbit knew Subject Number 745

kaa-san

which leads to the most disturbing part of the episode

wow that is fucking horrible

I mean, the implications alone are horrible, and I find this seriously worse than any gore you can throw at me. I’m surprised (but happy, for lack of better word) that they didn’t remove this. At least they didn’t show Hinami hugging the actual limb like the manga did. I don’t think I’ve ever been happy for a downplay, but I can appreciate this.

This sequence of events actually fixed what I couldn’t understand about the manga way back when I read this. In the manga, after receiving the tip from disguised Kaneki and Touka, the CCG sent the team in charge of searching for Hinami (aka Mado’s team) to the area but found nothing. As they were leaving, Mado says he has something he needed to do. Fast forward a bit, and we find Hinami in the very same area hugging her mother’s severed arm. At the time, I thought she had somehow acquired it from wherever CCG dumps the ghoul corpses they take the Kakuhou from, but yeah… I think Mado leaving it there to lure Hinami was how it went. Idk, brain’s too slow sometimes.

Anyway, speaking of this sequence of events, the manga gave Touka more cause to think about her actions by making it so that the reason Hinami left was not because she caught her mother’s scent, but because of Touka’s actions. In the manga, Rabbit’s killing of Kusaba have reached the newspapers. While this is all going on behind the scenes, in an attempt to show Hinami her support in learning, she gives Hinami the newspaper she was reading for her to practice on.

Touka

notice how Touka doesn’t really resent humans, but rather investigators

Bonus: look at this cutie *A*

Bonus: look at this cutie *A*

Hinami is then seen trying to read the newspaper, coming across the article about Kusaba, and reading

like me

before realizing that Touka was the cause of it.

Later in the evening after work, Kaneki comments how it’s quiet upstairs and they decide to check on Hinami before leaving and find her missing. Touka realizes that it was because of the newspaper article about Kusaba’s death

ayato1

By “this” I think Touka means how she drives the people important to her away despite doing what she thinks would make them happy

and we get this too

ayato2

Before this, we see Touka completely sure of her actions. She thinks that revenge would ease the pain of loss, and she thinks that her way is the only right way (or close to it) of dealing with what has happened.

A bit of a spoiler here.

I think that her rashness here is a product of how she lost Ayato because she chose “not to act” against the humans and decided to live among them. “Lack of action,” therefore, became an indicator of “failing someone.”

End of spoilery bit.

Touka, in all honesty, simply wanted Hinami to be happy. With this goal in mind, she was unable to recognize the flaw in her logic, and here we have her beginning to question her choices at the face of the possibility that this was not what Hinami wanted. This is slowly reinforced throughout the episode as Hinami tells her that she didn’t want revenge, and when she saw how, like Hinami, Mado also (probably) had a family (which he does) and the very possible possibility that Mado was driven to hunt and kill them by the very reason Touka wanted to hunt and kill them.

Mado

Rewinding a bit to the actual battle, we see Touka having parallel monologues with Amon, and Mado being the complete opposite of Kaneki and just basically ignoring every word Touka is saying, taunting both ghouls with the “loot” he got from Hinami’s parents. When Hinami does join the fight, revealing her sort-of-dual Kagune, Mado gets fucking mutilated

WTF

tbh this part was weird

and

hoho bluray is the best

hurray for bluray

Touka tells Hinami to finish Mado off, but Hinami says that she doesn’t want revenge and that she was just lonely.

But since Mado is a crazy fucker,

crazy fucker

srsly dude, you’ve lost an arm and a leg. Maybe you should just lie down or sthn

And Touka had little choice but to kill him instead.

On the other side of this battle, we have Kaneki getting his ass handed to him by Amon.

Ironic, given that you just killed the mother of one of those "freaks," don't you think?

Ironic, given that you just killed the mother of one of those “freaks,” don’t you think?

I must say that I liked their dialogue. The fight sequence though… It could’ve been better. I really did not get how Kaneki went from this

"You won't even try to understand? Then..."

“You won’t even try to understand? Then…”

to just proceeding to let Amon beat the crap out of him. I mean, I thought you had steeled your resolve the moment you donned your mask and stepped out to face Amon? And wasn’t Yomo training you and commending your agility? You could’ve dodged Amon’s slow-ass stupid slab of concrete .

I mean seriously though. TG has the worst weapon designs. Wait ’til you see Juzou’s weird-ass scythe and Amon’s slab of concrete ver. 2

I don’t really see the point in this. Even Amon’s actions were questionable. At this point, Amon hates ghouls. Sure, he has his doubts (because of his backstory), but right then they were near negligible. In the state he was in, Amon could’ve—should’ve—killed Kaneki without hesitation. But instead, we see him trying to incapacitate him while talking about how all ghouls should just die like then why the hell won’t you kill this one ghoul and be done with it?

Kaneki letting Amon beat him up in the beginning was fine, but for crying out loud if you’re going to  say something like “I’ll make you understand,” looking all badass like you have balls of steel now, then fucking do so. Right away. Don’t go for another bout of how do

That aside, I really liked how they did this scene

so there's no other way around it

I just wished they changed the sequence up a bit.

Also, the fight that followed was… really short-lived. If I were Amon, I’d be disheartened. And slightly embarrassed.

In the aftermath, we have Touka realizing the error in her mindset

Mado and Touka

and Amon, having a reason to question his own ideals

amon and kaneki

AND OF COURSE THIS

YOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW HAPPY I AM BECAUSE BIG BRO YOMO

BIG BRO YOMO YAY

And we have closure for our bby Hinami

hinami2

Also, this

out of context tho

I’m so, so sorry but this photo taken out of context looks like it came from a comedy Amon pls you make the most ridiculous of faces.

There is a cycle of revenge inherent within the current state of lack of understanding between humans and ghouls. Both groups have experienced pain at the hands of the other. Because of this, differences between the two groups overshadow their similarities, and both are unable to see any worth in understanding the monsters. They fail to see how their justifications also apply to the other party. The misgivings of a few are generalized to the whole, and as a result “justice” is served at the expense of the innocent, leaving those affected by the losses to avenge their loved ones who did nothing wrong. Both are then left to wonder why while completely oblivious that both are asking the same questions.

circular

The difference is grave and is not something that can be fixed through compromise so easily. An equal compromise might not even be possible as anything that would permit a ghoul to eat would go against a lot of human morals. But the question still stands—what makes one group more deserving of life than the other? The truth is, no one is more deserving of life. But it is so much easier to pass judgment and justify revenge when the other party is little more than monsters to be subdued.

The difference is not something that can easily be overlooked and accepted. But the similarities are worth the consideration of coexisting. The problem is humans and ghouls in general are neither in the state to care for the similarities. The damage runs too deep, especially on the ones in the position to make a difference. For example, while the CCG is the authority over all things ghoul-related, most who join them are those left behind by ghoul victims and therefore all researches and investigations are aimed towards the ghouls’ eradication. Another is the only ghouls that catches the eyes of the humans are the bad kind.

This episode explores a bit of how the cycle has gone on, goes on, and will probably continue to run its course. Mado lost his wife to the ghouls and has directed all his efforts at finding the ghoul that did while killing all ghouls he comes across. He was able to go on such a rampage because it is “justified” in the eyes of the people around him. One of his victims is, as we saw, Ryoko, and as a result, Touka seeks revenge and kills Kusaba. But amid the revenge-fueled cycle, we see hope for an end.

Amon, who himself has experienced loss, has now also experienced something he would not have expected of a mere monster.

Amon and Mado

here, we see how our view of Mado must not be the only aspect of him there is

Kaneki, who is trying to find a way to make both ends meet

eye-to-eye

Hinami, who under different circumstances could’ve stopped a branch of the cycle with her

hinami

and Touka, who finally saw how her actions were no different from the very wrongs she’s been wanting to avenge.

Touka1

The problem Tokyo Ghoul has made for itself  is something I personally find almost impossible to solve. I mean, it is natural for humans to fight for themselves and not let their kin be eaten, dead or alive, but it’s not like the ghouls have any choice in the matter of food unless science makes it possible. But like the world won’t shield you from further complications just because you have your hands full on an already huge-ass problem, Ishida-sensei won’t either.

Overall, I think the episode delivered pretty well. I’m going to jump right into the next episode, and hopefully I can finish until Root A episode 1 before school resumes.

In any case, thanks for reading!

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