Spiritpact episode 3

“Beware of Sleeping Together!”

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During a trip to Ki’s Mount Ura estate, Keika comes to understand how important the exorcist’s position really is. After being introduced to Ki’s family, who are intrigued by his choice of spirit shadow, Keika begins to question his purpose as a spirit shadow. A surprise visit from a pair of powerful spirits opens his eyes to the danger involved and reveals that not everyone under his mater’s protection is on his side.


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If it wasn’t clear by now, this episode belabors the point that Tanmoku Ki is kind of a big deal where spirits and exorcists are concerned. A trip to his estate introduces Keika to some members of Ki’s family along with a disagreeable man named Ritsu (who looks like the guy Keika is fighting in the OP). The excitement that everyone seems to share over the fact that Ki gained a new spirit shadow reminds viewers that this is of great importance somehow, but not quite explained why. The only thing viewers really know at this point is that a Spirit Shadow is supposed to protect his master. The excitement over Ki bringing him home, however, starts along a line of BL subtext that carries through to the end.

Image of Keika kicking the boundaryKi, it seems, isn’t ready to fully trust Keika just yet though. Bound to being within 60 meters of him for the night, Keika wanders around on the roof for a bit, finally pondering his new life as a spirit shadow and if it’s what he really wants. His introspection is short lived, however, when a pair of spirits ambush him. The more powerful one, Sennen Youko, lets his subordinate, Kau, toy with Keika for a while but divulges some key information in the meantime. He reveals himself as the master of the mountain and declares that everything atop it belongs to him. His status as a former spirit shadow signifies a deeper connection to the Tanmoku family, and a special rivalry with Ki.

Image of Youko taunting KiAs goofy as Spiritpact has been, if you blinked you might have missed something in this exposition heavy episode. Once again, Ki takes the majority of the focus despite being absent for much of it. Rather than explaining outright, the dialogue and passive aggressive comments convey the situation between moments of absurd humor. The series no longer has an ambiguous direction, and seems to be setting itself up for a good vs. evil match-up. It’s a setup that can make the most of Ki’s aloof nature and gives Keika something of real consequence to consider as he continues life as a spirit shadow.

Good
– Ki further fleshed out through Keika’s interactions at the estate.
– The series is starting to take shape, pitting Ki against Sennen Youko

Bad
– I had to watch it twice to actually pick up everything that happened
– If you expected Shiyou’s presence to influence things, she doesn’t yet.

 

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The purpose of this week’s episode was to amalgamate any gap between the initial series set-up and the confrontation. Because of this, viewers are bombarded with a considerable amount of information. Here are a few imperative tidbits to carry forward in subsequent episodes:

  • Ki is head of the Tanmoku family, tasked with their safety, and set to become some sort of priest.
  • The Tanmoku family home is built on an ‘altar’ atop Mount Ura. This spot was chosen to be the place where balance between shadow and light is maintained.
  • Because Ki is the master of this domain, he is considered the human closest to God.
  • Mount Ura is a place where demons gather. The Youma King, Sennen Youko, controls the mountain and claims the entire Tanmoku family (including Ki) belong to him.
  • A spirit’s true form is different from what people see. For example, a spirit known as Kau can transform herself from a young girl to a grown woman.

As you can see, there is quite a bit to process from this episode. For every new detail revealed, another question emerges. For example, viewers are introduced to the character Ritsu, an arrogant man who resides in the Tanmoku family estate. Since Ritsu refers to Ki as “master,” I am led to believe he is a servant for the estate. Ki’s family, however, use the title of master interchangeably with his name. Therefore, Ritsu may be related to the family in some capacity? I’m not entirely sure…

Image of Keika saying he doesn't understand the Tanmouka family
Even Keika is confused…

What is known is Ritsu holds a grudge that is far deeper than what is disclosed in this episode. He vaguely explains , “it would be awful if there were to be another tragedy…” and goes on to threaten Ki with, “God watches everything; I will pay you back for all you’ve done one day.”

Though viewers have been critical of this series so far, the underlying message is truly fascinating. Spiritpact is actually an allegory of heaven versus hell. At the end of episode 3, Ki explains that if he wasn’t around his family would fall; as they are “weak”. While this admission seems insignificant, Ki is a manifestation of moral righteousness. Faith is designed to protect mortal beings from falling victim to evil and corruption. Ki essentially has become a shield of virtue between mortals and hell (ie: the demons dwelling on Mount Ura).

While Spiritpact will likely hold my interest for the remainder of the season, I am beginning to realize why many viewers are dropping this series. The apocalyptic battle that is unfolding is lost amidst exaggerated humor and embellished emotional displays.

Good
– Intriguing apocalyptic story hidden amid the humorous moments.
– Introduction of main antagonist(s), who appear to have longstanding grudge against Ki.

Bad
– Tense moments still fail to seem serious, given the heavy amount of humor.
– Overwhelming amount of information to process this episode.


This post is part of our seasonal episodic review series. To view all the posts in this series, click the following link: Viewing Party

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4 thoughts on “Spiritpact episode 3

Add yours

  1. “While Spiritpact will likely hold my interest for the remainder of the season, I am beginning to realize why many viewers are dropping this series.”

    I won’t think any less of you if you drop it right here.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. My real issue with this is I’m getting major Hitori no Shita vibes where there were plenty of good potential storylines and intrigues that cuold have been fleshed out and then the show utterly failed to develop any of them until the very end and even then it didn’t actually finish even one plot line. Now it isn’t fair to judge this show because of that one but I really feel like this one is heading into the same pattern. I’d love to be proven wrong but unfortunately I’ll have to watch it through to the end to find that out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve not seen Hitori no Shita yet so I’ll have to defer to your judgement on the similarities, but I can understand where you come from. I feel like I’m tempting fate a little bit each time I approach one of these “spirit” shows because there’s a lot of stuff that tends to get brushed over in the interest of the specific story being told, and without a solid background I’m just kind of left guessing.

      But I’ve had my fill of series that start interesting plot lines but completely fail to develop them, and I’m not eager for another one. As you said, by the time you find out if that’s the case or not it’s too late.

      Liked by 1 person

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