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Kaiju No. 8
Episode 7

by Grant Jones,

How would you rate episode 7 of
Kaiju No. 8 ?
Community score: 4.3

kaiju7.png

Episode 7 brings the first major test of the secret identity tension to the forefront and tees up a significant battle to come.

The first portion of this episode focuses on Reno and Iharu fighting Kaiju No. 9. This is a reasonably tense fight for the most part. Obviously, Kaiju No. 9 is vastly more powerful than either of them even with all their powers at their disposal. I don't think this is any great surprise - No. 9 is the first true named antagonist we've had, and it wouldn't make a lot of sense for him to be a pushover. We need Kafka to ride to the rescue after all! But it's a pretty menacing scene nonetheless, especially with the emotional investment carryover from the episode a few weeks back. Iharu processing his self-loathing is mostly successful, if a bit brief for the audience to really latch onto his deal and get the full effect from overcoming his challenges.

The problem for me is that the multiple fakeouts get a bit tiresome. Having death fakeouts in anime is nothing new, so it's not like I can ding Kaiju No. 8 for employing the trope. That said, after about the second “Oh no, this is it!” type injury I start to mentally check out and exit the emotional rollercoaster as it were. And I think having your audience check out is not great, as a rule.

Kafka's arrival is suitably heroic and brings the secret identity tension to bear. I think this is smart, even if it does feel a touch early to be doing this. It works because it's more revelatory about Soshiro, seeing him in a different mode than we are used to seeing him (with Kafka voicing as much). This helps make the deployment of another obvious trope more unique to the series, and I think it works well. The question now is, how does Kafka get out of this?

Rating:


Grant is the cohost on the Blade Licking Thieves podcast and Super Senpai Podcast.

Kaiju No. 8 is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.


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