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Kiba – 6 – The price of freedom

It’s easy to take kids anime for granted, but compared with Western cartoons aimed at the same young viewers, the difference in conviction and themes is exceptional. Through out episode 6 of Kiba, several (old and young) characters die. It’s not gory, but the intent to kill is clear from the outset. There are no last minute resets, no brave super heroes to save the day; that’s not to say there aren’t characters with good intentions, but (as this episode suggests) sometimes good doesn’t always win out.

Frankly, I was really impressed with this episode. As cliche as Kiba has been up until now, I never expected to see the characters battle like they did here. It was shocking to see Noa envelope an entire town in flames, shocking to see old buddies like Kis and Gale impale each other with their swords.

Episode 7 promises a return to the dumb-luck of Zed and his boring face off with Dumas, but taken as their own separate story, both episode 5 and 6 represent an emotional and unpredictable high point for this series, where the ideology of short sighted adults collides with the untainted vision of youth. I’m in no doubt now that Noa will eventually turn bad and come to battle Zed, but with this kind of compelling back story, who could blame him for giving up on society?

Comments

bateszi says:

I wonder if I’m the only one left still watching Kiba? I know the first four episodes will have put a lot of people off but honestly, these last two episodes have saved the show for me; presenting some surprisingly mature touches in what is basically a kid’s action series.

Of course, a return to Zed’s "world" next time puts a bit of a downer on proceedings but I’m hopeful (at least for now) that Kiba can attain these heights again.

Ramen89 says:

Im still watching it allthough I allmost dropped it after episode 5, 1 was crap, 2-4 were crap but fun, 5 was just a bit boring, but 6 looks quite entertaining so I’ll give it a few more episodes.

Shion Uzuki says:

When a show is as generic and derivative as Kiba, I find the cheesiness of episodes 3-4 a hell of a lot more entertaining than what we get in 5-6. Burning villages, characters discovering special powers, friends destined to be pitted against each other; haven’t we played all this before in any number of second-rate RPGs? When a series can’t hope to aim for anything deep or sophisticated, it should at least try to be laughably bad, and Kiba is far too mediocre to even achieve that.

Ramen89 says:

Just watched episode 6, god that was boring, I really wish they’d stick to the mindless shonen action, that was entertaining at the least.

Reika says:

I thought I was going to drop this series after ep4, but I was curious how they were going to approach Noa’s story. I really don’t care much for Noa’s angst, but more interested in the laws of the world that both boys found themselves in. It’s weird that Zed ended up in a village that at least tolerates strangers, unlike the place where Noa found himself.

Quach says:

lol that second pic looks like the guy is cumming fire.

bateszi says:

Quach, you have an interesting way of looking at things :) Didn’t even notice this myself, but now when I look at the piccie it’s all I can think of.

I can see why people would rather Kiba just be mindless fun, but I guess I prefer actually having a story, with character development and everything else that goes with it.

Malikai says:

@bateszi…except perhaps for the mindless violence of something like Tokko? ;)

The point is, if you’re going to have story and character development, then it has to be of a certain standard or you might as well not bother and just stick with the mindless entertainment angle (after all, at the end of the day, don’t we watch anime to be entertained?). So far I haven’t seen anything particularly decent in the way of story or character development in any episode of Kiba; it’s not clever or mature, it’s just boring.

bateszi says:

I won’t deny it, Kiba is a guilty pleasure of mine. I’m well aware of it’s short comings, yet inexplicably I keep coming back to it. I even intended to drop it after episode 5… 7 days later and here we are again, maybe I’m a guton for pain? :)

With that said, episode 5 and 6 were a lot better than anything to come before. The story and characterisation was serious, dark and a touch compelling- I never felt bored by it all and genuienly groaned at the prospect of returning to Zed’s "timeline".

Having episode after episode of "mindless fun" won’t keep me interested for long- it’s the characters and the story that matter and I suppose here I was just glad that Kiba was at least trying to make it’s viewers think and feel, rather than just make them laugh at how stupid the whole series really is.

Ramen89 says:

I think the problem with ep 5+6 is that its taking itself to seriously, I just want some mindless fun, not attempted seriousness and tragedy, you cant do that properly at an 8:30 slot in the morning.

Will says:

I’ve watched all 17 episodes of Kiba they have out right now. Sure it’s dull in the beginning but later say episode 9 or 10 it starts to pick up.

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