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It may be only the second episode, but this season of Jormungand excites me more than the first.
The biggest problems with Jormungand's first season were the episodic nature, the constant reminder about Koko's badass character and the sole focus on Koko and Jonah. This episode pretty avoids doing everything season 1 did wrong and it still stays as a 1 to 1 adaptation. Impressive right
There is definitely a lot going on, but its building up to something big. When I say big I don't mean resolved in the next episode big, I mean a more continuous story with more complexity. If you think back to Jormungand's first season, you might recall how episodic it was and how short-lived all of the arcs for with just 2 episodes a piece at most, and now we've had two episodes of an arc which hasn't yet concluded.
In such a great episode there were 3 shining moments for me, each contributing something new to the series. Here they are:
R's Flashback Sequence
It's no secret that I hate flashback sequences. I find them an overused tool of narration in anime and manga, but Jormungand's flashback sequences. Including Jonah's flashback episode from season one, this is one of the best uses of flashbacks as a narrative tool. It goes particularly well with Jormungand's style because the cast have such interesting background stories and whilst many may be subject to secrecy, a select few - deemed important enough - will bring something more to the table.
Excluding perfect execution, there was a sigh of relief coming from me when the focus was mostly on R. On occasion it becomes agitating to enjoy the series when it doesn't make the best use of the cast and now we finally get to learn more about a different character!
Koko's Vulnerability & Hex's Past - The Second Flashback Sequence
Two great moments in the episode that ended up embedded within each other and incidentally, one of them is giving us something we didn't see in the first season.
Koko was always that character who you couldn't figure out and that continuous build-up has left her a little to omnipotent, which I was glad to see stripped away from here by the moment of intense vulnerability we saw from her. Hex's past also had that same vulnerability and it played into the sequence almost perfectly, to the point where when there was the split screen flashback shared by the two characters we become more invested in their past.
The best part about this rivalry was how it didn't come across as just another person who hates Koko. There have been a lot of instances where there was no real emotional investment or care for the other characters attempting to kill her.
The series has really stepped up its game, and the upcoming developments in the story. Jormungand has me more interested in the story now than it ever has and I'm excited to see what will happen next. The detailed info regarding the CIA is also giving this arc a little more intrigue.