(Omg why the fish did wordpress change its post layout AGAIN?)
So you’ve already seen the title of this post and you’re probably thinking, “Omg Confessor, where have you BEEN that’s so LAST YEAR!”
Yes yes I know guys. But better late than never right?
I started watching Tokyo Ghoul because I wanted to watch an action anime and since I’ve recently become more tolerant of watching horror/gore scenes, I decided to give Tokyo Ghoul a go. Honestly speaking, when I was still unable to stomach horror scenes last year, I decided that I would read the manga instead for the story and so I did. It intrigued me. So the anime should be cooler because its action scenes are animated right?
Of course. Anime are best suited for action sequences, that’s why they feature more shounen genre stories as compared to shoujo genre ones. Doh.
As most people would probably know, Tokyo Ghoul is a story that revolves around the protagonist, Kaneki Ken who is thrown into a colossal mess that of the world of ghouls – monsters that prey on humans for their flesh for survival with human faces.
As a result of a terrible accident that occurred that miraculously left him still barely alive and an organ transplant to save him, Kaneki is transformed into a ghoul. Well, half a ghoul. As a ghoul who was once human, Kaneki is unable to accept this new side of himself for most part of the anime as the thought of eating other humans like himself (or used to be) is disgusting and repulsive.
He struggles with his new ghoul-like tendencies and diet while learning more about ghouls through the new acquaintances he makes at Anteiku, an organisation in the 20th Ward where he stays. Through them, he learns that not all ghouls were what he thought them up to be, that they have feelings and people precious to them that they want to protect too.
Eventually, Kaneki catches the attention of a few powerful and prominent (or infamous) ghouls who wish to capture him for special purposes because he is a one-eyed ghoul that is supposed to be a myth.
After undergoing enormous torture from a psychotic ghoul named Yamori, Kaneki’s hair turns white and he finds a new resolve in himself not to let others push him around. And that’s where the series supposedly gets more exciting and badass.
I think the anime sequel to Tokyo Ghoul is completely non-canon so to know what happens after that, I’m gonna have to read the manga to find out. It’s kind of disappointing that they didn’t just make the sequel canon to the first season even though it was so popular and well-received.
I really like how Kaneki grows up from a conservative, insecure bookish person into somebody who is able to stand up for himself (even though it meant him going through immense torture that he shouldn’t have had to go through). Even though I found his predicament most pitiful and sad, I think that it opened up his eyes to many things. As part of both the human and ghoul worlds, he could now see both sides of the story and was in this extremely unique position to actually empathise with each one of them. And although the torture performed on him made him stronger, it also gave him a changed personality that I assume made him more cold and calculating than before. Hmm, I’ll have to catch up with the manga to confirm that.
When I was first introduced to Kirishima Touka, I didn’t feel much for her and I didn’t think too much of her either. Touka was a character who was aloof, brash and cautious about the people around her so I found it a little difficult to like her at first. But later on, when Hinami comes into the picture, Touka is revealed to be fiercely loyal and protective over the people she cares about, which shows that she isn’t a bad person – it’s just the way that she expresses herself that tends to make her misunderstood. I’ve since come to like her a lot better after she displayed no hesitation to voice her decision to save Kaneki from Aogiri Tree.
As for the other characters, they are all brilliant – brilliantly warped and interesting in their own ways too but for now, these two are the ones I thought I should mention because I saw the most character growth in them over the span of 12 episodes.
In conclusion, I think Tokyo Ghoul is an interesting story that explores thought-provoking questions about values and ethics. Are the ghouls really all that different from humans? Should such repulsive creatures that possibly have the same human feelings and emotions be allowed to coexist with humans themselves? Is revenge the answer to everything?
Also, I’m pretty interested to find out more about Touka and her brother Ayato’s back story, as well as Aogiri Tree itself and what happens to Kaneki after the Aogiri Tree arc.
Character likeability / Character background: 8/10
Overall story: 8/10 (This was a dark story, different from the type of anime that I usually like to watch but nevertheless, I did enjoy watching Tokyo Ghoul)
Re-watchability: 7/10 (Okay this is because the story is pretty slow. The anime features more story depth rather than action sequences, so some episodes even go without any of them or if there’s one, it’s a really short less-than-five-minutes one)