Episode 2 Impressions: Akame ga Kill!

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Without even fully grasping the situation, Tatsumi got dragged along with Night Raid in the last episode. Would he ultimately join the assassins or is there a different path laid out for our main protagonist?

Synopsis
Tatsumi is reminiscing over the (past) mutual ambitions he shared with Ieyasu and Sayo as he sits over their graves. He wouldn’t be deep in thoughts for long though, getting interrupted by the big-breasted lion-like babe: Leone. Night Raid still seems to be in the process of recruiting Tatsumi, since Tatsumi himself is still doubtful. Almost as abrupt as his previous “abduction”, Leone drags Tatsumi to Night Raid’s base so he can meet the other members. Most likely in an attempt to lure Tatsumi into joining.

e2akamegakill1After the intro, we are quickly introduced to all of the Night Raid members, learning about their traits. Sheele utilizes dry humor. Mine is a bit of a bully who likes to pick on Tatsumi because he’s new. Bulat is certainly among the most vibrant of the group. Leone also revealed that he’s gay, which must have been in sync with the hearts of fan girls shattering everywhere. Lubbock is portrayed as being quite the womanizer as well as a prankster. Akame is the stoic type who shows emotions only in certain situations, ranging from humor to even being concerned. Then finally, the Boss. The temporarily unnamed woman who is playful while still maintaining discipline. Leone recommends Tatsumi, which sparks the Boss’s interest. Leone’s efforts pay off as the Boss wants a report on the previous mission and more information about Tatsumi.

e2akamegakill2The Boss explains how Tatsumi’s choice won’t be a matter of life and death. Refusing their offer to become an assassin would only mean having to work in their workshop. This triggers Tatsumi to reveal his mission in the Imperial capital. However, Bulat points out that dealing with the city’s corruption is directly beneficial for the very village Tatsumi is trying to save. We also learn that Night Raid is actually a branch of the Revolutionary Army that has a camp set up in the south. A massive attack is being planned that will sweep the Imperial city, providing sufficient distraction to reach the corrupt minister, and kill him. Tatsumi deduces logically that Night Raid kills with a sense of justice. But Night Raid lets Tatsumi know that there is no justice in murder. They could pay at any time for their deeds with their own lives. This doesn’t cause Tatsumi to waver though, as a compensation is the final push he needs to join the assassins.

Tatsumi has been placed under Akame’s care for training purposes. But I’m quite sure Tatsumi didn’t have cooking for days in mind when joining this group… Bulat, Sheele, Lubbock and Mine leave for a seperate mission before Akame and Tatsumi go fishing. Akame completely outclasses Tatsumi, much to Leone’s amusement as the remaining e2akamegakill4Night Raid members dive into the food. There’s barely any time for small talk though as there’s a pending mission that needs attention.

Night Raid is to kill Ogre and Gamal. Gamal, an oil merchant, bribes Ogre, an imperial police officer, so that he can get away with his atrocities. Ogre would then frame another innocent person, making Ogre and Gamal a diabolical duo that benefits from each other. Not only does Night Raid accept the case, Tatsumi gets involved. No, “involved” doesn’t even cut it. It is up to Tatsumi to kill Ogre, while Leone and Akame go after Gamal.

Before the mission starts, Leone tells Tatsumi about Akame’s past. It wasn’t exactly pretty. You see, Akame, her sister and many other children were bought and trained to be assassins for the Imperial capital. It was only because of the current boss of Night Raid (who was Akame’s target at the time) that Akame was persuaded to join in the fight against corruption. Her dark past is the reason why she’s hard on Tatsumi.

e2akamegakill3As expected, Akame and Leone make quick work of Gamal, since he’s just an oil merchant. The real fight is between Ogre and Tatsumi. It might not have been as smooth as Tatsumi wanted, but he came through in the end, killing Ogre. Tatsumi reports his big victory to the Boss, while boasting to Akame in the same breath. It becomes clear that Akame was only harsh as a result of being concerned. She congratulates Tatsumi and is very relieved since mortality rates are high for first missions. The Boss finally tells Tatsumi that cooking with Akame has molded him in the communicative and hunting aspects that are very relevant for assassins. But Tatsumi’s smile quickly fades away when the Boss says he’ll be under Mine’s care now. Mine’s attitude might be tougher to deal with than Ogre’s battle prowess…

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This episode was all about getting to know the Night Raid members. We got to know their most dominant traits, got a taste of the dynamic between them and even dove into Akame’s past. It was also an episode of confrontations though. The Imperial city is truly corrupt and characters like Ogre and Gamal will keep Night Raid busy for days to come.

I noticed how they’re still able to maintain the balance that was established in episode 1. Humor, action, darker elements, fan service… You feel like you got a bit of everything whenever an Akame ga Kill! episode ends. The animation was once again gorgeous and the music had that same vibe you get from Assassin’s Creed soundtracks.

The only hiccup was that they didn’t adapt the manga strictly. They either switched two sequences or completely skipped a small part of the manga. It’s most likely a switch made by the storyboard director for good reasons. But readers may have been thrown off. However, it wasn’t detrimental story-wise, and it definitely didn’t take away from the episode.

Episode 2: Kill the Authority

THUMBS UP!

THUMBS UP!

IMPRESSIONS VERDICT:
Excellent

Pros:

  • Well-balanced (humor, action, gore etc)
  • Good pacing
  • Early back story (Akame)

Cons:

  • Not a strict adaptation (could still turn out to be a good thing)

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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By offering anime and manga reviews, Ernest aims to cater to the needs of the geeky masses. After having written for various platforms including KissAnime, and with a perspective backed by a plethora of content, he now lends his writing skills to OtakuSpirit.