REVIEW: ‘Fire Force,’ Season 2 – Episode 12

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Fire Force Season 2

Content Warning: Fire Force Episode 12 contains scenes of child torture and a moment of implied rape. 

Fire Force Episode #12 is a shonen anime produced by David Production. Picking up immediately after the last episode, Benimaru and his mysterious guide continue their attack on the Great Sol Temple. While Beni is there mostly to cause havoc, his partner seems to have a much more defined reason for this attack. There are dark secrets at the heart of the Great Sol Temple. This one, however, has nothing to do with adolla bursts.

Now that the secrets at the heart of the Great Sol Temple are being pursued, it seems the narrative of Fire Force is going all-in to expose the lengths that the church’s agents will go to in the service of their god. As the content warning above indicates, it is much too far.

With Benimaru recovering from his momentary defeat which closed the last episode, the duo easily fights their way into the temple, and they find it conspicuously empty. It is revealed that the church’s members have fled into the Nether, the underground area where Station 8 confronted the Evangelist’s minions last season. It’s an area that is supposed to be anathema to the church. As it is quickly revealed though, the church is actually quite fond of the place. And it is here that the primary confrontation of Fire Force Episode 12 takes place.

Upon entering the underground area they quickly find an elaborate facility. What’s more, they are quickly confronted by agents of the church. A group of highly trained shadow assassins. This is when it is revealed why the stranger is so willing to lead Benimaru against the church and when we get shown one of the church’s dark secrets.

Fire Force Episode #12


Warning: Spoilers for Fire Force Season 2 Episode 12 below.

What is going to follow is definitely spoiler level. However, I feel I need to address it as it is the reason for the content warning that begins this review.

We learn the mysterious stranger was once in training to be one of these assassins. Brought in as an orphan, he was referred to simply as 52.  The youth quickly shows an aptitude for the martial arts and great promise as a killer. His instructor though feels the youth is seeing himself as more than he should and proceeds to beat him bloody. Only after several moments of begging from those present is he eventually pulled off young 52. This, however, is not Fire Force Episode 12’s darkest moment.

The flashback sequence jumps to another time when young 52 is pondering a watch that belonged to his now-deceased parents. His instructor sees this and grows upset with the youth. He is angry becomes the boy clearly misses his parents. But as his only parent now is Sol, the instructor destroys the watch and orders the youth to his chamber for further lessons.

The sequence once again cuts to the youth, his hands now bound by rope to the ceiling and his instructor flogging him. After several moments of flogging and taunts the instructor is seen sliding his arm around the youth and telling him, “I’m going to defile you down to your bones.” The scene immediately ends.

While the individual scenes here are not horribly graphic, the content is shocking, to say the least. Especially since Fire Force as a series has not gone anywhere close to this level of dark material before. And honestly, I feel it is a bit unnecessary.

While I appreciate the show’s desire to properly explain 52’s want to destroy the church, this goes unnecessarily far. The initial beating alone, and perhaps the implication of it being one of a series of such instances would’ve been more than enough. The subsequent sequence feels completely inappropriate. While there are appropriate ways and places to address such content, I don’t feel Fire Force provides either of those.

Aside from this sequence the rest of Fire Force Episode 12 is filled with high octane fight sequences showcasing Benimaru’s raw power and 52’s unique abilities. As always, the action sequences are amazing to watch. 52’s tricks make him yet another unique combatant to be introduced to the show.

So when all is said and done Fire Force Episode #12 delivers a story that is a mixture of action and emotion, even though the emotion dives a bit too deep. It makes me wonder what other dark secrets lie at the heart of the Great Sol Temple.

Fire Force Season 2 Episode 12 is streaming now.


Fire Force Episode 12
  • 8/10
    Rating - 8/10
8/10

TL;DR

Fire Force Episode 12 delivers a story that is a mixture of action and emotion, even though the emotion dives a bit too deep. It makes me wonder what other dark secrets lie at the heart of the Great Sol Temple.