Episode 9 Impressions: Noragami

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Who do you call to when a god and a regalia need help?  That’s a good question that Iki herself asks while Yato lies dying and Yukine is in line for absolute punishment.  A punishment that Yato himself may have predicted long ago.

Synopsis
After Daikoku creates a borderline to prevent everyone from entering Kofuku’s home, Daikoku allows Iki to enter to be cleansed of blight.  After realizing Kofuku’s desire to help Yato, Daikoku agrees to help him in the only way possible.  To put Yukine through an ablution ceremony and cut the blight where it originates.

e9noragami10Though an ablution ceremony requires three regalia to perform so Daikoku sets off to find two more willing participants from local shrines.  It’s obvious when he arrives at Michizane’s shrine that regalias aren’t too fond of the ceremony as it’s difficult to perform and usually ends in a phantom being born that will eat the regalia.

Mayu steps forward to offer her aid, claiming Yato once gave her the name of Tomo.  After no other regalia step forward, Daikoku leaves to other shrines.  Bowing in humbled request to each one with no regalia offering aid.  Mainly due to most not knowing who Yato is.  Michizane is shocked by how much corruption one regalia could cause and thinks Yato should kill Yukine.

After cleansing herself of blight, Iki rushes off to find one last regalia for the ceremony after hearing of Daikoku’s struggle.  She realizes that Nora would jump to aiding Yato, but fears she would kill Yukine.  This leads her to Bishamon’s shrine to beg for Kazuma to help.  While Bishamon senses someone at her shrine, Kazuma snatches her away and agrees to help.  Though claiming Bishamon would have killed Iki if she had known what was going on.

Back at Kofuku’s home, Kazuma demands that Yato banish Yukine but the others already know he’s unwilling.  When Yukine tries to leave, Kazuma points out his guilt feelings and Daikoku demands he remove his shirt.  This reveals that the reason Yukine has been stinging Yato so much, as his entire back is transforming into phantoms.

e9noragami5Daikoku, Kazuma, and Mayo erect their ceremonial triangle and kick things off.  As Iki watches in horror, Kofuku explains that the ceremony mustn’t be interrupted until the regalia confesses its sins to the others.  That being former humans, only other regalia can judge the sins of each other.  Thus the reason for the three regalia being needed.

Yukine refuses to listen and demands to be let out, transforming partially with phantom wings and bashing against the barrier.  He recalls the isolated feelings he had at the school and how he can never have friends or possessions ever again.  He tries to get the other regalia to realize that they are all dead and that in the end, he wants everyone to die and be like him.

Just when hope is lost, Iki steps forward and tries to talk him out of his actions.  That Yato has gone through so much pain for him and speaks to him as a father does to his son.  That if he does this to Yato, she will no longer be his friend.  At the same time, Yato finally muster the strength to call out to Yukine and says that he gave him a person name and wants him to live as a person.

This brings Yukine to his senses, apologizing for all of the sins he has done by name.  Finally breaking him from the phantoms and purifying his soul.  The following day Kofuku gives them a clean bill of health and everyone is utterly wiped out.  Yato thanks everyone for their help and then realizes just how much Iki has done for him.  Recalling her decision to bring him to Kofuku, not choosing Nora because he may have used her to kill Yukine, and for speaking up to Yukine to help change his heart.

e9noragami17Thoughts
What an absolutely gripping and emotional episode.  I can’t express how much of a roller coaster this episode was. With so much build up from Yukine’s actions throughout the seasons finally coming to a climax that had to be addressed.  While the outcome may be slightly predictable, it doesn’t take from the sheer amount of great writing that went into how this entire ordeal transpired

Daikoku’s trip to each shrine was really powerful as he had to humble himself upon every deity in search for a Regalia willing to lay down their life for Yato, a god that is either not known or known for his shady past.  The fact that Bishamon was in fact not involved was a treat, as I figured based on the preview that she was going to agree to help to prevent a problem in the future.  Kazuma springing into action instead on his own was a much more fitting scenario.

It was great to see how Yukine was portrayed as well, fighting with his selfishness to the bitter end.  Actually making the audience relate to his situation made it much more impactful.  All the way to the final breaking point that came when his friends really stood up for him.

The final topping to the cake was Yato realizing how much Iki has done for them.  Realizing that her choices at every moment was the reason for them both being alive.  I’ll be interested to see if this translates to Yato finally figuring out a way to help her.  Though based off of the after ED clip, it seems the Noras are finally going to make their move.

Episode 9: Name

THUMBS UP! PROMISING!

THUMBS UP!

IMPRESSIONS VERDICT:
Absolutely Amazing

Goods:

  • Powerful moments
  • Lots of emotion
  • Great voice acting

Bads:

  • The episode ended

Impressions are based on a single episode and don’t necessarily reflect the series as a whole. Unless dropped, we will continue to give updates on thoughts and impressions of the series as time goes by.

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Co-Founder of OtakuSpirit.com and Co-Host of the OtakuSpirit Animecast. A huge fan of anime since the early 1990s, consuming over 800 shows. While he's late to the collecting scene, he's found a lot of joy in filling his DVD/Blu-ray collection as well as collecting figures. Once a week, he posts unboxing and feature videos on anime goods to YouTube.

  • Neowned

    Just got done watching and…wow. Really great episode, hope this show gets realized as one of the best hows of the Fall season.

    • It’s definitely pushing it’s way to the #1 spot in my list. Though it has some tough competition with Inari Konkon.