When you’re already in jail and you get put in ANOTHER JAIL
This post is brought to you by a temporary caffeine boost from all the matcha I just consumed.
A moment of weakness is contrasted with moments of strength. Rin, who has been fighting tooth and nail to prove his worth in the face of constant alienation, finally falters. When sentenced to death, he starts to wonder if dying really is the best option for him. It’s one of the rare times he’s let things get into his head. Usually he just shakes it off and responds with adrenaline-pumped vigor, but not this time. Rin enters his darkest moment in the depths of an impenetrable prison with the threat of death hanging over his head.
Of course, the prison isn’t completely inescapable, there’s no way they’d actually execute Rin partway through the series – especially since his flaming sword skills are needed to kill the Impure King. It’s not exactly shocking that his friends set out to rescue him and he snaps out of his emo teen suicidal phase. While it’s predictable shounen fare, I still found it touching that when Rin was at his lowest point, his friends took it upon themselves to support him. This seems more meaningful given the fact that until now, they’ve mostly been either avoiding him or outright screaming insults at him. Rin worked hard to regain that trust, and his efforts paid off.
The power of zettai ryouiki heals all
That’s not to say that these bonds are mended purely because of Rin being so awesome and hard to hate (although the little bugger is pretty hard to get mad at). Shiemi never actually spoke with Rin this entire arc until now. She wrestled with her emotions and got her answers on her own, through introspection (and a helpful little push from Kamiki). This makes it all the more special for her to be the one to save Rin. She’s not just repaying the debt she accrued from Rin’s good deeds towards her, she’s doing this as a conscious effort to become his friend again. Rin didn’t sweet talk her, she just decided that she wanted her friend back and was willing to do whatever it took. With her newfound resolve, she stands strong and brings Rin back – even when he’s covered in flames. Again, it’s cliché that his flames were soft and warm and oh-so-nice, but it was still a touching way to show that the traits that inherently make him part demon can be accepted. Shiemi embraces the fact that he’s the son of Satan, she doesn’t just try and ignore it. There’s no shame in erupting into flames every now and then!
As for the rest, their reconciliation is more subdued, but still interesting. Kamiki always believed in Rin, so there’s nothing else for her to change, except a lil dash of tsundere-ish denial. Shima just kind of rolls with it, as per his usual method of dealing with…well…anything. Konekomaru sort of slips into it too. He’s clearly been doing some thinking since Rin’s attempt to befriend him earlier at his family’s grave site, and he’s come to the conclusion that he at least doesn’t hate Rin enough to let him die. Most of this revelation happened offscreen, so I don’t know how much he really trusts Rin. At least he’s reached a level of comfort where he’s willing to rescue him from certain doom.
Then there’s Bon, who really surprised me. All this time I thought he was angry at Rin for the same reason as Konekomaru and Shima: Rin’s father, Satan, killed their family and he inherited the same powers (which he can’t control). It turns out Bon was mature enough to accept Rin being the son of Satan all this time. What got him so worked up was the fact that Rin didn’t think to confide his secret to them the way friends should. That blew my mind. All this time Bon was craving closeness with Rin, and was just mad he didn’t get it. The matter was likely exacerbated by the fact Tatsuma has hidden behind lies Bon’s so whole life, so he detests having the truth hidden from him by people he’s close to.
But this IS his friendly face
I’m really happy everyone made up with Rin now. I honestly don’t remember how it happened in season 1, but I feel like it’s really smart to basically dedicate a whole arc to everyone rebuilding their friendship with Rin. It’s going to make the last battle with the Impure King all the better, because now they can actually use teamwork without freaking out about Rin’s flames. What a big, happy family!
…now let’s watch them suffer in bloody battle.
Tbh, this is the battle I really want to see