REVIEW: ‘Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon’ Episode 16 – “Double-Edged Moroha”

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Yashahime Episode 16

There was an emotional backstory somewhere in Yashahime Episode 16, but unfortunately, it just felt incomplete. Audiences aren’t given much time with the characters before the action starts. Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon from Sunrise is an anime-only sequel to Inuyasha. It follows the main characters’ children going on their own adventure in the feudal world. Namely, Inuyasha and Kagome’s daughter, Moroha, and her cousins Towa and Setsuna.

Yashahime Episode 16 kicks off rather suddenly. The leading ladies are facing off against Moroha’s former master Yawaragi, a wolf-demon. As seen last week, Moroha was entrusted to Koga and the wolf-demon tribe as a baby. It isn’t shown, but viewers can safely assume that Koga then gave Moroha to Yawaragi to look after. In a flashback, it is shown that Moroha’s sword, Kurikaramaru, used to belong to Yawaragi. After sending Moroha to compete in a battle royal of demons to settle a gambling debt, she gives her Kurikaramaru. It all seems rather cruel and underdeveloped. Moroha’s debt to Corpse Dealer Jyūbei is essential because she was sold off by her master. There are no tender moments shown between the two until the end of the episode, making any possible emotional payoff underwhelming.

The other problem with Yashahime Episode 16 is that it feels like there is a piece of the story missing. The decision to begin, and then cut back to, the three girls encountering Yawaragi to face off is jarring. Especially because it doesn’t explain why or how they got there. It is briefly implied they were called out. This is all part of Konton’s plan, thinking Moroha won’t go against her master. Konton has a key to an armor that is slowly crushing Yawaragi. Again, the themes of mentorship and self-sacrifice are rushed in the back half and don’t pay off when contrasted with the plot structure and seemingly heartless encounters earlier.

Moroha has been sidelined a lot recently by Yashahime, and in an episode that was supposed to give her the spotlight, it didn’t succeed. Yashahime Episode 16 tries to give a bit of insight into Moroha’s identity. As a quarter-demon, it is revealed that she does not have control over her demon blood. Using her rouge in fact slowly eats away at her humanity. No one informed her of this, however. They just set difficult standards and told her not to use them. The intent to push her to think creatively is there, but the execution is so rocky that it is hard to make that analysis without feeling as if it is reaching. Moroha’s “growth” at the end of the fight comes off incredibly forced as a result. Writing-wise, this is one of the weakest episodes, purely because of how incomplete the story feels.

Yashahime Episode 16 doesn’t give Moroha the backstory she deserves. A jarring plot structure hinders any emotional buildup, as well as bizarre decisions by Yawaragi in the writing. Instead of a thoughtful master/student relationship, it instead feels uninspired and cliche, with an added dose of a gambling problem.

Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon is streaming now on Crunchyroll, Funimation, and Hulu.

  • 4/10
    Rating - 4/10
4/10

TL;DR

Yashahime Episode 16 doesn’t give Moroha the backstory she deserves. A jarring plot structure hinders any emotional buildup, as well as bizarre decisions by Yawaragi in the writing. Instead of a thoughtful master/student relationship, it instead feels uninspired and cliche, with an added dose of a gambling problem.