We break into the new arc with a dizzying flurry. Spoilers after the break.
So much happens this episode, it’s hard to keep up. I will try my best though. I feel like there may be multiple plot threads all being woven together in this episode, but they seem to be coming together nicely. Here is how things go down, this time:
We start the cold open with the investigators of the 11th Ward under attack by ghouls from a hyper violent organization known as Aogiri Tree. Aogiri Tree’s goals and motivations are currently unknown, but they don’t seem to like the investigators, and have no problem taking over. The investigators try to fight back but are rapidly overwhelmed in a scene that looks straight out of Elfen Lied for a half second.
We cut to credits after a murder spree.
After the opening we cut to Yomo and Yoshimura discussing the recent attacks while looking on a scene of multiple murdered investigators while the bodies are eaten by ravens; this marks the series as officially having more ravens in Tokyo than Tokyo Ravens. Yomo reveals the leader of Aogiri Tree is named the the One-Eyed King just as a raven plucks an eye from a corpse. Ravens are a traditional omen of death, and in certain cases, oncoming war. The One-Eyed King is obviously somehow tied to the legend of the other one eyed ghoul.
Then the show breaks into one of it’s strange comedic pieces. It’s a slow day at the cafe, and Kaneki and Touka complain to each other how no one wants to come out due to fear of investigators. It’s at this moment, a new character bursts in, angrily demanding to see the manager. He’s large, he’s threatening, and he has a gang with him – clearly not to be messed with. He’s shouting in his best “I am a thug, please beat me up” voice, when Touka tells him he has to at least order coffee if he wants to berate them.
So he does.
He then explains that his name is Banjo Kazuichi (seriously?) he is looking for Rize. This leads to an entire awkward exchange between him and Kaneki, which is better watched than described. Seriously, go watch it, right now.
Meanwhile the investigators are shown being grouped into their new task force. About four or five characters are name dropped here, and that is the first sign that the government is not fucking around – they have sunk way too many named characters into this task force to have it fail. They mention the oncoming war, and the lack of survivors in the 11th Ward attacks.
At the end of the exchange in the cafe, Banjo (really?!) mentions the reason he is looking for Rize is that she is a target for Aogiri tree and in great danger. It’s at this moment Touka’s brother Ayato smashes through the window, leading to the first “oh shit!” moment of the show. Touka and Ayato almost immediately confront each other, and are only broken up when Jason walks in, which is the second “Oh Shit!” moment of the show.
Jason then proceeds to notice that Kaneki smells exactly like Rize, and well, beats the shit out of him. Brutally. Pretty graphically. This episode is probably the most violent one to get past the censors, and I’m betting that it’s because so much of the brutality is not shown but rather implied. Ayato incapacitates Touka, and Jason, Ayato, and Nico, Jason’s apparent masochistic lover/sycophant, leave with Kaneki in tow.Interestingly, when Ayato uses his kagume against Touka, we see that it resembles a pair of flaming red crystal wings, in a similar fashion to how Touka’s kagume is a single wing.
The 11th task force also gets another member – Juuzou Suzuya, who is pretty young at only 19 years old, apparently somewhat crazy, and the only rank 3 investigator in the task force. We have seen the character earlier – he pickpockets Kaneki in the last episode – but now we have a name to a face, and surprisingly he doesn’t appear to be a ghoul despite his unorthodox appearance. A senior agent tries to bait Suzo but an associate apologizes for him and tries to get him to back off, indicating that Suzo may be more powerful than his eccentric nature lets on.
Back at Anteiku, the employees all gather to decide what to do about Kaneki’s kidnapping. Yoshimura states that any attempt at a rescue is likely hopeless, but the group volunteers anyway in solidarity. Yoshimura states that even though it is unlikely to succeed he did intend to attempt a rescue mission, with the help of another ally. He open the door to reveal…the Gourmet, still alive and still bishie-as-fuck, in the third and final “OH SHIT!” moment of the show.
This is a fabulous episode, and not just for the Gourmet. The who episode is a thrill ride, and has this incredible blend of emotions without ever feeling like an emotional whiplash. It’s funny, it’s horrifying, it’s infuriating and sad all at the same time. It’s a masterful piece of storytelling. We have a whole two episodes of Tokyo Ghoul left. I believe we are ready for dessert.