Previously on Tokyo Ghoul √A, “Hangman”
All roads lead to Cochlea as Aogiri begins their attack. We get a few breadcrumbs of information about some of the mysterious characters, but more questions are raised along with new introductions. Kaneki meets a face from Rize’s past, Kuro and Shiro have a reunion, while Akira is still learning from her dad beyond the grave.
Long Time, No See
Now that the CCG has had a chance to lick its wounds, it’s time to get back on the offensive. The chairman has decided to send CCG Jesus, Chief Washu, to the front lines. Washu appoints Marude to be his second in command, and they waste no time putting their plans into action. Marude sends Amon and Akira to Cochlea, the ghoul internment camp Aogiri is about to attack. Amon was chosen because of his past history with an SS rated ghoul known as The Priest. Back in Amon’s orphanage days, he had a happy life until the day he walked in on The Priest, Donato Porpora, feeding on one of them. No child was ever adopted from there, he fed on them all, except for Amon. No wonder he has daddy issues.
Akira waits outside while Amon manages to get nothing out of Donato. Donato, on the other hand, reads him like a book and knows just how to get under Amon’s skin. In less than 30 seconds, he already knows Kureo Mado is dead and slides in a few low key taunts. Before Amon can leave, the alarms sound off and Akira comes rushing in. Only a glance is shared between Donato and Akira, but he instantly knows who she is. On the way back to the office, Suzuya is loving up his new quinque when Shinohara gets the news about Cochlea. They quickly change direction for Amon and Akira.
Naki leads the first wave of Aogiri Tree, dropping from the ceiling, while Noro, Eto, The One Eyed Owl, Kaneki, and Ayato follow. Akira and Amon watch the prisoners being let out of their cells as the Eye Patch’s group tears through the guards, but they don’t see when Kaneki saves a group of guards from Ayato. The skinny albino Hulk Hogan gets the drop on Eto, but only lasts long enough to get stabbed through the heart. Seeing an opening, Amon and Akira rush into the fight. Akira’s quinque is a razor sharp whip, which she wields well, but she is not the fighter her dad was. They manage to fight their way through prisoners and low level ghouls until they are cut off by Naki.
As Kuro and Shiro are cutting their way through the guards, Suzuya is in the building and charges into a group of ghouls. The two paths converge when Kuro and Shiro come upon the slaughtered ghouls. Fresh off a quick siesta, Suzuya emerges and the girls instantly recognize him as Rei. They unmask so he can see that they are Kurona and Nashiro. There’s a history there, but it doesn’t matter to Suzuya anymore. They became ghouls and he is an investigator, and that’s fine with him.
Akira thinks she’s doing fine until Naki manages to get his kagune to her throat. Amon’s hands are full with Naki’s two simpleminded goons, but Akira has one last trick. She has a chimera quinque, and her handle morphs into a sword, stabbing Naki through the gut. As Naki starts to cry, Akira drops CRC gas, which breaks kagunes and weakens ghouls. After taking another stab from Akira, Naki isn’t too weak to fight back. He cries his way through a whipping to land a devastating kick on Akira, and then a bite of her calf. Amon makes the save, but now they’re surrounded.
In a secluded area of Cochlea, Kaneki releases Shachi Kamishiro, a ghoul who isn’t happy about smelling Rize’s scent on Kaneki. Kaneki takes a huge hit, but gets up ready for a fight. Poor Kaneki just wasn’t ready to fight Shachi. Shachi is easily the fastest ghoul to this point in the show. He is mostly a blur to Kaneki, and it doesn’t help Shachi is also among the strongest. When Kaneki pulls out his kagune, Shachi now knows where Rize is. Even when Kaneki is the attack, he can’t get past Shachi’s speed.
Kaneki only lands two kagune in Shachi when he uses misdirection. This prompts Shachi to fire up his kagune and Kaneki is outclassed once again. Shachi toys with him before landing a punishing blow to the chest. Kaneki spits out blood so hard his mask pops off.
Back with Akira, the writers and/or animators got lazy and decided that the ghouls who had previously surrounded Amon and Akira were now all on one side of the couple. How does that work? The ghouls suddenly go 1960’s Batman villains and stand around waiting for Amon to attack. After he kills a couple, he falls back to chat with Akira while they wait. Horrible. In a scene with Amon repeating her dad’s first lesson to him, to her, I can’t help but notice the money they saved on stationary background. This scene could have recovered, but then I realized his plan was for her to hold on to his shoulders. She can’t fight, but he’s going to walk them through a horde of ghouls. Nope.
Meanwhile, Shinohara has been strolling through Cochlea untouched. The scene is clear until he bumps into Ayato. Shinohara blocks most of Ayato’s attacks but realizes Ayato isn’t a scrub ghoul like most of the rest. Shinohara decides to use his Arata armor and that’s when it clicks for Ayato. He had been sensing something familiar when they were fighting. Ayato and Toka’s dad is Shinohara’s Arata armor.
Underneath everything else going on, Kaneki is taking a pounding but he won’t stay down. The last barrage is capped off by a Fist of the Northstar Hokuto Shinken style combo and getting knocked through 2 walls. Shachi starts to move until The One Eyed Owl cuts him off, cryptically asking if he wants to meet Rize. Alone, in the dark, Kaneki is freaking out over losing the fight. He has to be strong enough to save Hide and the Anteiku crew. Unbeknownst to him, his kagune and face have changed.
Tokyo Ghoul √A - S2E4
I loved this episode except for one scene. It was lazy, plain and simple. In an action-packed episode, along with the show Shachi put on, it sticks out even worse. It’s a black eye on what was otherwise a stellar outing. Akira got exposed this episode. She’s not used to being vulnerable, or in over her head, but her father’s words came back to help her. Hopefully, Donato will be coming back. Even if he doesn’t have some great plan or place, just him being a foil for Amon is enough. Whether Shachi is a foil or eventual friend for Kaneki remains to be seen, but Kaneki’s arrogance definitely was exposed. We’ll definitely be getting a Kaneki upgrade of at least +10 ATK.