Libra’s Stephen is throwing a party for his friends–though as always, all is not as it seems in Hellsalem’s Lot. Meanwhile, Zapp is on the hunt for a missing housecat…and the consequences if he can’t find it in time are too horrifying to speak of! Remember, if you like this article and 5 Point Discussions please share it on Facebook and Twitter, and if you have any comments or questions hit me up @SageShinigami.
1. This series is almost comically violent. In the first third of the episode, we find Zapp hanging out in a brothel, clearly stoned out of his mind after a night of what I can only presume was a stunning amount of debauchery. Then out of nowhere, another woman bursts in claiming that her cat is missing.
Considering the episode starts off with a giant creature stomping his way through the city while the city advises its own citizens that it’s THEIR responsibility to get out of it’s way, Zapp’s consort points out that her cat is very likely dead, having suffered some awful fate. Though she’s kind of dickish about it, at this point the woman goes from panicked to outraged and begins casting an incantation on Zapp’s friend, revealing herself to be some kind of sorcerer that just happens to work at a brothel. Despite the woman’s weak attempt at an apology, the incantation finishes and *splat*, the woman’s breasts explode.
Aside from being hilariously stupid, I guess it is realistic. All the time people admit that if they had special powers they would just become murderers over minor inconveniences and tiny slights. Kekkai Sensen just shows us what that world looks like.
2. Still, not everyone is a horrendous piece of garbage. Because Leo’s role in the series can basically be described as “trouble magnet”-slash-hapless schmuck, he bumps into a tough guy on accident and winds up getting beaten to a pulp and having his money stolen. All because he refuses to use his powers to help himself, even in a situation like that.
On the one hand, it’s a respectable position. On the other, I’ll never understand why anime loves such extremes. You’re either a completely irresponsible dick with your powers or you’re so selfless you’ll allow yourself to literally get your face arranged. In Leo’s case though, it’s only a complete refusal to use his powers, but not defend himself. He attempts to buy a weapon in order to fight back and get the money meant for his sister, but he lacks not only the skill at fighting, but the desire to really do another person harm.
He’s offered a gun powerful enough to leave a hole in someone, but chooses a stun baton instead. He threatens the guy with his weapon, but when it’s brought up that the guy could have a pacemaker and an electric shock COULD be deadly, the tables wind up quickly turned on him and he gets electrocuted with his own weapon. Not his proudest moment, but he’s still easily one of the most human people left in the city.
3. Given Chain’s nonchalant “rules” from the end of last episode, the way they allowed this episode to play out worked fairly well character-wise. Early on in the episode, Chain sees Leo get cornered, but goes on her way without getting involved. Later, when Leo catches the people who robbed him at a bar, he gets beaten up and tossed out again…but this time Chain is waiting for them.
But while everything was set up for a potential fight scene, instead Chain challenges the large man to a drinking contest. Easily drinking him under the table, she takes both his wallet and Leo’s back, leaving him and his friend forced to pay the bill with no money. And because it’s Hellsalem’s Lot, it’s not enough for him to just wash dishes in the back. Instead both he and his underling wind up being dismembered and beheaded, leaving them as heads with only their brain stems attached. Quite the metaphor for what happens when country bumpkins take the big city too lightly.
4. Probably the most surprising part of the episode came with Stephen. He spends his part of the episode scheduling a party with all his friends…but at the end it’s revealed the entire thing is a trap, and the whole group is there to murder him. Still, the charismatic second-in-command to Libra is never outdone, and manages to freeze them all in place before they can do any harm. Revealing that the group actually tipped their hand too soon by small clues that almost no one else could have hoped to notice, Stephen reminds us that he’s the most terrifying member of the group when he wants to be.
More important, though, is the reveal that Stephen doesn’t only work for Libra. He has a secret group of his own that’s far less “heroic” and works solely for him. Currently we have no idea of their purpose, just that it includes lots of big, powerful looking monsters and a second-in-command that looks suspiciously like Trowa Barton from Gundam Wing. Presumably before the end of the season we’ll learn who they are, what they’re called, and whether or not they’re building a Gundam somewhere in Hellsalem.
5. Next Episode: Finally, an episode focused on Chain! The enigma of the group that’s undergone the least amount of development thus far, next episode seems to be looking back at her past and all the things she did (?) before coming to join Libra.
Blood Blockade Battlefront and Beyond is available for streaming on Hulu and Crunchyroll.