“Banmon no Maki-ge” (ばんもんの巻・下)
We finally get to see the showdown between Hyakkimaru and his family. Whose side will each member of his family take.
Not Hyakkimaru’s that is for sure!
One of the most subtly heart breaking moments happened in this episode and it is easy to miss.
Dororo is able to piece together what is going on a lot faster then Hyakkimaru even though Dororo spent the early part of the episode in some sort of prison. As soon as he hears of Hyakkimaru’s exploits he figures out that he belongs to Diago’s family and there is just a flicker of a smile as he thinks to himself that he has found his mum.
I really think it was Dororo and the Priest that made the episode though. Away from that one moment Hyakkimaru was more in a state of shock and whilst the reaction to his mother saying she can’t protect him was another great moment it was Dororo’s reaction to everything and the Priest commentating from afar, even if what he was saying was brief, that kind of made you realise just how big this entire episode was.
Diago has marked Hyakkimaru not only as a enemy of their land but a demon set on destroying it.
Tahomaru now has reason to dislike Hyakkimaru after probably losing a eye and his mother attempting to kill herself.
Whatever protection Hyakkimaru had from the statue seems to have gone too with the gesture from his mother as the Priest watches the aura that had surrounded it disappear completely.
I didn’t really know how Tahomaru would react and was really unsure what the mother would do but I think this episode played out perfectly. Neither of them are happy with the fate they’ve been given thanks to Diago but both realise that the lives of the many are more important then that of one person. Whilst it is a heart breaking turn for anyone who has followed Hyakkimaru’s journey so far and we see bridges to his family completely burnt to the ground the pain the decision left his family in was seen. Tahomaru isn’t a bad guy and neither is his mother for going along with what she’s been told to do, his father on the other hand is a monster and Tahomaru reads him right. Instead of doing something to actually help his people he turned to demons and fed them a innocent life, the innocent life of his son no less, so that his people could prosper and he could become the Lord of a rich land. In no way does he show any remorse or pain for what he’s put his own flesh and blood through in fact he seems smug about the fact Tahomaru, after being goaded into making the “right decision”, agrees with him.
Dororo and the Priest say it all really. It is a sad fate that has been handed out to Hyakkimaru and it is heart breaking but that is his fate.
Moving forward I guess there are monsters to slay and life to lead but it makes you wonder what Hyakkimaru’s end goal is going to be. He now knows his life is the only thing that is keeping all these people from suffering, he knows his family want him dead and he’s a enemy to Diago. Whilst he will no doubt still want to regain his body it’ll be interesting to see how he processes all this.
He has no family now to return too, they couldn’t even turn around and say “stop killing Demons and live like that with us and everything will be fine” they want him dead end of story.
He also has no home to go to either. The land he belongs too has abandoned him but are using his sacrifice to survive.
Whilst fighting for his life is important what life is he going to have now?
Not that anyone is really having any kind of life with all this war and demon shit going on I guess. At least he still has Dororo.