REVIEW: ‘Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon,’ Episode 20 – “The Hidden Village of Half Demons”

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Yashahime Episode 20 - But Why Tho?In contrast to last weekYashahime Episode 20 is one of the show’s best, seamlessly blending the show’s lore with a thoughtful glimpse into Setsuna’s past. Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon is from Sunrise, and is an anime-original sequel to Rumiko Takahashi’s Inuyasha. The show takes place in the feudal era after Sesshomaru’s daughters are separated across time and then reunited years later. They team up with their cousin Moroha to track down Setsuna’s lost memories taken by The Dream Butterfly.

Towa tags along with Setsuna as she sets out to run an errand. She is initially hesitant, but finally, she opens up and tells her sister the story of how she grew up. It a legitimately heartwarming moment for the show, it is revealed that Jakken secretly rescued young Setsuna from the forest fire. While hiding his identity, he leaves her at a hidden refuge for other hanyo (half-demon) children. Another familiar face for Inuyasha fans is here: Shiori. Now grown up, the barrier creating half-demon looks after other young children like her. This is one of the instances where a cameo from Inuyasha doesn’t feel forced, but makes sense and is natural.

There are multiple cameos this episode, which won’t be named to avoid spoilers. It works this time around. That is because all of it is in service to Setsuna’s backstory. How has this world shaped her? The Setsuna we know has shut herself off emotionally. Finally, viewers get a more concrete answer as to why. Her abandonment hurt her, and when she tries to live amongst humans she realizes just how different she is from them. For one so in control normally, the fact that Setsuna struggles with her demon half when her loved ones are in danger is very telling.

Yashahime Episode 20 shows multiple sides to Setsuna that the audience may have only gotten small glimpses of prior. Her past relationship with Miroku is finally explained, as is much of her origin. With Jakken as her secret benefactor, she grows and develops her powers and makes friends with other half-demon children. The episode takes its time, letting Setsuna tell her tale. It is paced well, and it genuinely feels as though a fair amount happens, but isn’t rushed. Unfortunately, that is rare for this show, so Yashahime Episode 20 stands out all the more for its execution. Ideally, it is what every episode of the anime should be. It gives depth to the characters we know and expands the world of Inuyasha without feeling like fan service. The episode also has a moment of genuine connection for the two sisters at the end.

Yashahime Episode 20 provides a fantastic backstory for Setsuna while easily blending in cameos from the anime’s predecessor. This is what every episode of Yashahime should be like: fun, thoughtful, and focused on the characters. The story itself is small in the grand scheme of things, but it provides a much bigger context for one of the main characters, which makes it important.

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

Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon Episode 20
  • 9/10
    Rating - 9/10
9/10

TL;DR

Yashahime Episode 20 provides a fantastic backstory for Setsuna while easily blending in cameos from the anime’s predecessor. This is what every episode of Yashahime should be like: fun, thoughtful, and focused on the characters. The story itself is small in the grand scheme of things, but it provides a much bigger context for one of the main characters, which makes it important.