Shiki Episode #15 Anime Review

The previous episode really took things up a notch with Toshio's autopsy on his wife who had been turned by the okiagari threat. Though he wasn't brutal with it, treating it as coldly and professionally as possible, it's just that attitude that really pushes Seishin way since there's so much meaning to what he did. Toshio's descent is certainly an internal one, one that's hard to watch because of the difficult choice he made, but one that you know he had to make in order to try and find some way to stave off what's happening .It's the kind of difficult moral dilemma that we do get in a number of shows, but few of them with this kind of powerful emotion and context behind it to make it really sink in.

The Sotoba village is going through a similar mindset as Toshio as the deaths are now becoming a natural thing, a new one every day is essentially expected. There's concern, from some more than others, but there's a quiet sadness and acceptance going through the town in a way that hasn't been seen before. The helplessness and acceptance is palpable through a few scenes since nobody knows what can be done. It's even worse because Toshio is unable to offer up anything himself yet feels frustrated by the way they're all so accepting of it. There is that background hope that someone from the outside world will help, but it's coming from the same people who are now looking at the world differently as they're learning to accept a supernatural force at work here that they can't stop. The two are not easily reconciled though.

One strange change, one I'm not entirely keen on, is that we get a look behind the way the deaths are now being handled when it comes to funeral services. While the early ones were fairly straightforward, those from the Kanemasa mansion are now manipulating it in a way that allos them to gain the bodies before burial, making it easier to handle those that do come back in their new life. What's striking about it, and insulting to the families of course, is that it's all done as spectacle. And it's a strange choice since it draws more attention to everything and puts everyone off balance. It's hard to say whether the gain of being off balance is worth it from the spectacle, since they get the bodies one way or another. It's not a turn I expected and took a bit of the subtle reality out of the show.

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