This episode is a real turning point for this anime.
After an abysmal previous episode this episode makes me feel hopeful for the series.
In this episode we discover that Rokuro, via what is known as Kagere corruption, turned into a Kagere and killed his friends in the Hiinatsuki incident.
This revelation does a number of things to make this series way better.
The first reason is that it explains why Rokuro acted the way he did.
There is a scene where Rokuro tells Mayura that it was his fault his friends died.
Prior to this episode I just assumed that Rokuro meant that he failed because he couldn't protect his friends and now we know it's the exact opposite.
There was great build up to this because it directly contradicts Benio's debate with Mayura over Rokuro being an exorcist.
Benio says that Rokuro should be an exorcist to save lives, but in reality he took lives.
Also throughout this series so far I didn't believe there was any chemistry between Benio and Rokuro and that whatever chemistry the anime forces us to accept was not earned or genuine.
However in this episode we also learn that Benio's twin brother died during the Hinatsuki incident.
Benio's whole purpose in life is to rid the world of Kagere. And I think a major reason why is because she believed that Kagere killed her brother. However supposedly it might be Rokuro who killed her brother.
If this is true, this will change Benio's whole view towards Kagere and towards Rokuro.
I think one of the only ways to get chemistry from leads who initially don't have chemistry is after they go through some sort of incident. This incident can be dramatic but it doesn't have to as long is it creates strong character change/growth.
And it wasn't just these revelations that made this episode so great. We are also introduced to Mayura's father, Rokuro's master, Seigen Amawaka who is one of the 16 guardians of something I am not entirely sure of. The 1st guardian we met was Shimon and I'm sorry to all the Shimon fans out there but when he was introduced all I could think of was Sasuke, Sasuke, Sasuke. He just seemed like the standard shounen second male lead. However Seigen is something entirely different because he seems like an amalgamation of both a good and a bad character which makes him very interesting. Initially he beat up the other exorcists in the dormitory so I thought he was just a bully. But then we discover he's Mayura's father and Rokuro's master, we see that picture of father and daughter, see Rokuro's reaction to Seigen. All of this makes it seem like he's a good guy. However Seigen goes on to beat up Rokuro as well as telling his secret to Benio. Maybe he didn't know about Benio's situation, however for all we know he could be just evil and told her knowing her situation.
In regards to Mayura's side of the debate. Personally i think Rokuro has more chemistry with her and to be honest she's more my type so I might be bias. There seemed to be a hidden meaning in Mayura asking Rokuro whether he really wanted to be an exorcist.
It sounded like Mayura was really asking if Rokuro wanted to be with her or with Benio. To be in her world or Benio's. But we do find out that Mayura may have some special power and she is the daughter of an exorcist so she might join in on the Kagere killing fun.
There seems to be this shift in tone to darker themes.
That scene of Mayura being taken to the Kagere world was like a well executed scene from a horror movie.
The Kagere's look so far has been very polarizing. While I don't love the art, I admire the creativity of the different types of Kagere.
I thought the Kagere looked creepy but never scary, and I thought it was intentionally because it's a shonen.
However I will say that the little boy who was only visible in mirror and grabbed Mayura's hand was downright scary.
Before I watched this anime for the sake of not having watched a shonen in a number of years.
But now I am so excited about this series and can't wait till the next episode airs.