The second episode of Fire Force is out and with it a new recap and review as we learn more about the mission of Fire Force 8 and a new member joins their crew. Who is Arthur Boyde and what is he like? Read below and find out.
The second episode opens with it listing one of the most common ways to die being death by fire before we get introduced to another new recruit and told about a Fire Force contest for rookies. Shinra wants to know if someone else will be coming aside from the rookies before the show uses some excellent framing shots and contrasts to highlight his hopes that one of the people who’ll come might know something about the fire he was pulled from. Probably the member of the Fire Force who was with him in the flashback. However, the new character appears behind Shinra and calls him a devil, upon which it becomes clear the two are familiar with one another as the opening plays.
We then cut to Maki, who creates her cute little fire familiar and explains the difference between second generations and third generations. The sight entrances Iris as it turns to burning flowers before she snaps out of it in time to see the new recruit, Arthur, getting ready to throw down with Shinra. They studied at the Academy together and, much like when the argument between pirates and ninja were relevant, knights versus heroes led to a competition between the two. Of course, our serious lieutenant comes along and puts out the little fire familiar before he has Maki spar with them.
Maki, if you couldn’t tell by the last episode, knows how to fight since she’s an ex-soldier and beats Shinra handily since she can basically shut his flames down. Arthur lasts a little longer since his ability uses plasma (Yeah, this series will stretch the definition of fire powers by the end) but she just makes him kneel and knees him in the face. Of course, both of them piss her off and she makes it clear that the devil and knight are outmatched by the witch (whose naming ability is just terrible).
So, after they’ve been humbled they go for ramen with the captain. He’s so chill that Shinra wonders if he ever gets mad, and we also learn that since he doesn’t have powers he has to gear up with over 30 kilos of equipment including an Ax that can shoot a spike out of the end. However, maintaining all that gear leaves him wishing they could get an engineer instead of leaving it to their lieutenant, but he doesn’t have time to lament it before they get called in.
The target is in a residential home, so they’ll be in close quarters and Shinra can’t use his abilities as much so he has to take an axe. However, he makes it clear that everyone must keep their weapons hidden inside their coats in public. The new recruits disobeys this order as a girl cries over her father becoming an infernal now and her mother just two years ago, wondering if she’ll be next, which actually does make him mad because he points out that they are killing people with them and showing that to the survivors is a slap in the face.
Of course, before they can get into that a man with a bottle of something makes the fire sneer at them so they head inside to lay the infernal to rest. The man who became an infernal is just sitting there, not burning anything, waiting for death while enduring the pain of being on fire quietly. Arthur basically mercy kills him with a single stab to the core and things get quiet before all of a sudden black powder comes in and threatens to collapse the house.
Captain Obi knows someone did that so he gets pissed as he lifts debris off himself, while the man responsible blows smoke that spells out “Joker” and states that it was a joke. Obi gives the girl afraid she’ll turn into an infernal next a photo of her parents and states they had been protecting her from the flames, considering she remained untouched. It’s the only comfort that he can offer her as she cries while Shinra looks on, leaving him restless that night until Arthur tries to get him to go to sleep in an act of kindness.
Mmph. Good stuff. Oh yeah, this is a good series and a strong second episode.
This episode was largely two parts, with the first setting up future events in the competition while introducing our chuuni-knight Arthur and further expanding on what we know of the other character’s personalities. Maki apparently has issues with being perceived as unfeminine (and can beat the crap out of them) and the lieutenant has a stick so far up his rear its amazing he can sit down. The second half, however, did an excellent job of showing that Obi and the rest take laying the infernals to rest seriously.
Remember, its not only the infernals who suffer. Their families losing them suddenly, watching as they end up becoming monsters who are burning in pain until they are laid to rest, suffer as well. That’s why their unit braves the flames and don’t show their weapons in public, because they don’t want to add to that misery.
Now, this particular girl is unfortunate because not only did she lose her mother to the flames, but her father as well. For that man to not have been running wild like the two in the first episode were spoke of immense inner-strength and not even burning his home down was something noteworthy. But in the end, she’s still down two parents and there’s nothing they can do for her other than offering her a shoulder to cry on.
In the end, for all of our heroes’ powers, they are a response to a problem that currently has no solution. It says something about how messed up the world is when murdering people is a necessity to end their suffering, so there’s no need to make it worse. The fact that someone who I’m going to call Joker interfered only adds to their suspicion that something is strange.
Hopefully they can solve this mystery so they don’t need to see more people suffer.