REVIEW: ‘Shinobi no Ittoki,’ Episode 2 – “Merciless Choices”

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Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2

Shinobi no Ittoki is an action anime produced by Troyca. After barely surviving the attack on his person, Ittoki must now face a harsh choice. To continue living in the world, he must set aside his previous plans and become a ninja. But how does one make such a life-changing choice on so little notice? And once his path is chosen, will Ittoki be strong enough to rise to the challenges presented to him in Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2?

With the full facts now in front of him, Ittoki is left with only two solid choices. He can learn to become a ninja and lead his clan, or he can sneak away into exile. His uncle is confident he can get Ittoki out safely and stash him away where the Koga Clan will never find him. The choice is not fair, but it is nevertheless one Ittoki must make quickly.

I love the way Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2 presents Ittoki’s choice. Rather than having every member of his clan yelling at this scared boy to step up and do what his clan needs him to, he is shown every ounce of sympathy that can be allowed. While it’s clear what the clan needs, the fact that asking him to make such a choice, having just learned about this hidden world that wishes to kill him, is completely unfair is not lost on anyone. The respect for Ittoki’s feelings is a surprise, as I feel like many anime would have people slapping Ittoki upside his head as they repeatedly tell him to “Man up.”

When Ittoki’s decision is made, Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2 follows along as the protagonist deals with the new challenges that await him. With the help of his friend Kousetsu and his uncle Tokisada, Ittoki has as good of a chance as he can hope to survive what comes next.

Throughout this episode, we also get plenty of new information about how this secret ninja world is structured. This information is woven in fluidly with the episode’s larger arc, keeping exposition to a minimum. And while it tells the viewer how things are supposed to happen, it also takes the liberty to show how it works. With rules already being broken and crafty leaders circumventing the established protocols, some of the less desirable aspects of society are as true for ninjas as they are for us.

The animation brings all of the story’s emotional tension to life effectively. Ittoki’s struggles are given their proper weight through the animation’s portrayal of his distress. The regret of those around him who are forced to put this weight on his shoulders is handled in a subtle yet genuine way as well.

When all is said and done, Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2 delivers a solid entry filled with character building and setup. I like how the series sculpts Ittoki as a person, and I hope that the show continues to let him and his world be more than just ninja battles.

Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2 is streaming now on Crunchyroll.


Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2
  • 8/10
    Rating - 8/10
8/10

TL;DR

When all is said and done, Shinobi no Ittoki Episode 2 delivers a solid entry filled with character building and setup. I like how the series sculpts Ittoki as a person, and I hope that the show continues to let him and his world be more than just ninja battles.

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