Amongst all of the new shows airing this season, Tokyo Ghoul was one of the shows I was looking forward to the most (Aldnoah.Zero and Glasslip being the other two I’m really looking forward to watching). I’ve always been a fan of shows that are somewhat dark and mysterious, so this was right up my alley. If you’re not a fan of series that are violent and involve a lot of blood and gore, you may as well stop reading here because the show is most likely not for you.
The story is set in Tokyo in a world where both humans and “ghouls” exist. Unlike humans, ghouls find the taste of food disgusting and must east flesh to survive. After a series of events, the normal life of the main character Ken Kaneki is quickly turned upside down after he encounters a girl named Rize. Below is one of the PVs for the show to give you a quick taste of what the show is like.
In my opinion, the pacing of the first episode was spot on. They covered a lot of information about the dark world Kaneki is currently residing in, the difference between humans and ghouls, and briefly introduced some of the other supporting characters that we’ll be seeing throughout the series. While they covered a lot, it didn’t feel like the episode was rushed and trying to cram to much into it; some series try to cram too much into the first episode and it actually ends up turning me off of the series.
The art style is another strong point in this show. I can only assume that the series had a fairly large budget compared to most since there is a great amount of detail. Both the art style and whole atmosphere of the show remind me of the dark world in Psycho Pass, a series I would highly recommend watching if you haven’t seen it already.
In considering the direction of the show, I found that the way they portrayed the moments after Kaneki discovered that he was a “ghoul”, or at least part ghoul, to be excellent. He experiences a brief state of denial and panic in his house when he decides to see if all human food tastes disgusting to him. He feels sick every time he tries something different, yet still pushes on and tries something else desperately clinging to the hope that he is still human. The shakey shots and jumpy cuts help to further emphasize the sickening feeling. Finally, after finding even his favorite food to be disgusting he seems to sadly accept the fact that he has become like a “ghoul.”
Another greatly executed scene was when Kaneki goes out onto the streets the next morning. Whether he likes it or not, he considers everyone differently now. The ghoul part of him sees everything around him as a potential food source, and his mind becomes cluttered with thoughts of all the “flesh” surrounding him. As he starts to become more and more crazy over the thoughts of all the flesh around him, the tempo of the music picks up and shots jump to one another quicker and quicker further adding to the whole tension of the scene until he snaps out of it and regains his senses. Here we begin to see Kaneki struggling between the ghoul and human side of himself; something that we can most likely expect to see throughout the whole series.
In conclusion, Tokyo Ghoul is off to a good start and I would definitely recommend picking up this series if you don’t mind the gore. I just hope that it doesn’t end up flopping closer to the end like some of the series last season did. Now I’m off to read the manga since I don’t want to wait until episode two!
First Episode = 5/5