The Kingdoms of Ruin kept turning last week, with Adonis becoming even more empathetic, offering a vital turn for the protagonist and spurred by his growing relationship with Doroka. Now, in The Kingdoms of Ruin Episode 9, “The Ruined Kingdom of Mamuta,” the series’ world gets larger, as does Adonis’s ability to empathize with others, even if they’re just dolls.
Continuing their adventure across a ruined world through the wastelands, Doroka and Adonis find themselves in the Ruined Kingdom of Mamuta. A place of entertainment and excess, they find a madoa in the middle of the street. A mechanical doll; all she wants is to give pleasure and receive it. In The Kingdoms of Ruin Episode 9, it’s easy to think that the Shonen series is diving deep into fan service that it has mostly avoided the entire season so far. However, as the episode continues, the presence of the media is what’s called into perspective as an ill of humanity and not something to be exalted.
The episode itself is shocking in how it presents this. The madoa move their bodies while the men of the Mamuta empire rot around them. They’re in pain, unable to fulfill their purpose, and the reality of it all, as Adonis explains, is caused by the sacrifice of real women. Mothers, daughters, and wives were all sent to the Redia Empire in exchange for the madoa, who are now pained by their own existences.
The shock of the episode is handled with care, and Adonis becomes someone closer to being likable. His rage and his moral stance are clear, even if it is just against the humans; sometimes, that aligns with caring for someone other than himself and Chloe’s memory. Setting off an improvised EMP, Adonis grants the endless madoa trapped in the ruined kingdom peace.
Doroka, through it all, looks on at Adonis, shaken by the reality of humans. On top of that, Adonis’s “good deed” comes after Doroka’s inability to find him treating her with bear minimum respect. She says to herself that he would never harm her. Then the episode flashes to when he held her by her neck in anger. She says he would never abandon her, but he literally just did. Adonis is terrible, yet Doroka is tied to him willingly, and the mercy of showing kindness in this episode somewhat begins to show that it is warranted.
The Kingdoms of Ruin Episode 9 also doesn’t shy away from reminding the audience of Adonis’s sins. While Doroka grieves in front of a grave toward the end of the episode, he asks her why she chose to stay with him when he was the reason the witches on the moon were killed. But Doroka carries no resentment, no rage, despite Adonis instructing her to.
Finally, this episode expands the world of the series even further. We see people sent by Emporer Suzure, another empire looking to harm Redia or at least keep it at bay. Only the powerful Shirousagi appears and dispatches them while also showing himself to Adonis and Doroka. Redia has reached them, which makes the next episode an important one.
As a whole, The Kingdoms of Ruin Episode 9 keeps shifting expectations for the series and captures shocking subjects with some surprising level of care. Graphic in nature at points, the series still knows when to hold back what it shows. If it keeps building out characters the way it is, this series can continue to succeed.
The Kingdoms of Ruin Episode 9 — "The Ruined Kingdom of Mamuta"
As a whole, The Kingdoms of Ruin Episode 9 keeps shifting expectations from the series and captures shocking subjects with some surprising level of care.