Kekkaishi #44 — The Empire Strikes Back

December 2nd, 2007


This is more like it.


Probably the first actually enjoyable episode since the hiatus, although that’s not really a ringing endorsement. It was still entertaining, though filled with some hilarious budget saving techniques; people without faces, strange use of stills (Yoshi dispelled about 5 totally immobile, demons strangely suspended in the air and totally motionless) and they forgot to draw Tokine’s eyebrows at one point. That said, the budget was placed a big strangely. Most of the little grunts for the first half of the episode were well enough done, but the second half, where things actually happened, was characterized by people standing still as others attacked them, occasionally with animation reuse from the first half. Sakon just chilled and made a tornado around him whenever anything came close, and after Yoshi realized that he followed Sion instead of Kaguro, he got cranky, sat down, and let her drag him off to Kokuboro HQ.

As mentioned before, it’s a little weird to see Sakon’s design reworked for this. Suddenly he has smile lines on his face and he’s full of fangs. Hopefully he and Masamori will have a real fight, although the preview was mostly Yoshimori running around Kokuboro tearing crap up, which I’m also fine with. If it stays more or less at this quality for the next couple weeks, I’ll be rather pleased. It was just really weird to see the budget for the episode dropped into the relatively meaningless first half while the second half where everything interesting happened was not quite so good.

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