Akame Ga Kill! Episode 1 Recap – “Kill The Darkness”
In a world where a tyrannical empire rules the land, young Tatsumi leaves his village to travel to the capital. He is trying to save his village amidst the corruption and chaos of this world. Once in the capital, he encounters the secret assassin group Night Raid, and the skilled assassin Akame. Being a young shonen swordsman himself, he joins with their ranks (somewhat against his will) to battle the corruption.
What happens this episode:
Tatsumi arrives in the capital to get a job as commanding officer in the government. After he is laughed out of the office, a lady thief swindles him out of his cash. He’s stuck with having to sleep on the side of the road tonight. A young girl named Lady Aria spies his plight and brings him back to her family’s mansion.
Her family promises to help him find his missing friends Ieyasu and Sayo, who were attacked by bandits and separated. Then the tone takes a wild swing for the fences, snapping from comedic and light to absolutely dark and gory. This show isn’t censored, I can say that at least.
Aria’s family is killed by Akame and her Night Raid teammates in bloody fashion. Among Akame’s flunkies is the thief who stole Tatsumi’s money. Akame and Tatsumi eventually face off with Aria’s life in the balance. Akame defeats him but Leone (the thief) convinces her to spare Tatsumi, since she “owes him a favour.” Leone also shows him what Aria’s family is hiding – a shack full of dead bodies. These are the families’ captured victims, country boys and girls who were taken in by the family and then tortured to death. Aria herself killed Sayo for having nice hair and being a country hick. Ieyasu dies while relaying this info to Tatsumi.
Consequently, Tatsumi shows no remorse in slicing Aria in half himself. This gets the attention of Akame and Leone and they kidnap him, forcing him to join the Night Raid ranks.
I’m not sure about how I feel yet. The tone is all over the place for one thing. It’s wacky shenanigans one second, then dark and disturbing the next second. Perfect example: Sayo is tied up, naked and dead, with torture marks all over her body. Ieyasu dies coughing up blood in Tatsumi’s arms. The very next thing that happens? Tatsumi is comically dragged by the collar and then chucked in the arms of a large male soldier. It’s jarring to say the least.
It was certainly entertaining to watch though. The 24 mins passed by in an instant, and the score was kind of cool. Nothing to complain about in the action sequences either. Tatsumi himself is very much a standard shonen dude, very bombastic and confident in every thing he does. My only nagging thought in the back of mind is that everyone in the show is going to die horribly ugly deaths.
*shrugs* I’ll reserve my judgment on that for now. *shrugs*