Platinum End is a dark fantasy shonen anime produced by Signal.MD. Having cleared the air between her and Mirai, Saki seems reinvigorated. But just as things begin to seem on the upswing for our protagonists a new God Candidate appears on the scene. How they came to be a candidate and what sort of threat they pose will be the focal point of Platinum End Episode 9.
This week’s episode starts on a surprisingly happy note. With the team moving into a new base of operations, Nanato presents Saki with her own suit to help protect her in times of danger. This moment would be fairly adorable in any series but placed against the dark backdrop of everything this series has been thus far and Platinum End Episode 9‘s opening absolutely shines. The levity doesn’t get a chance to linger, however, as the story turns to explore the newest God Candidate on the scene.
Hajime Sokotani has lived a hard life. Impoverished and mistreated on account of his looks, Hajime found himself in the same straights as all the other candidates did when their angels picked them. Despite utilizing his newfound abilities as a God Candidate to change some of the causes of his lifelong struggles, Hajime still struggles to be what he wants to be. To be someone strong, confident, and good with girls. He has, however, found someone he can aspire to and emulate, and his choice of inspiration has dire consequences for our protagonists.
Platinum End Episode 9′s exploration of its newest cast member is upsetting and difficult to watch. A child being treated as the young Hajime is solely due to his looks and social status is a story that never fails to hurt. How he gets drawn into the main plot’s ongoing conflict makes decisions made by the character feel understandable, despite how absurd they feel on the face of it. Prolonged trauma can make people turn to places you’d never think they would if it provides them with what they need at the moment.
Alongside this main story is the continuing side plot of Saki’s angel training to become a level one so she can have her wings. Given that up until now the angels have been static personalities throughout the series, seeing one of them pursuing growth and change does a lot to deepen the existence of these characters. Showing that they are not carved in stone, but rather capable of change gives me hope that the series has more in store for these characters.
The visuals in this episode left me a bit conflicted. To present Hajime’s struggles with his looks, Platinum End Episode 9 delivers the character’s features in a jarring way. While I appreciate the show wanting to deliver a character that properly presents Hajime’s struggle, the character is presented in an artistic style that feels wrong for the series. It’s as if he was drawn for an entirely different show and placed in this one. This gives the character an almost alien quality to his visual design, which feels a bit overboard for the point that is being made.
When all is said and done, however, Platinum End Episode 9 delivers a solid entry in its story. The twists that Hajime brings to the story drastically alter the situation and I’m curious to see what will come of the unfolding situation next week.
Platinum End Episode 9
- - 8/108/10
When all is said and done Platinum End Episode 9 delivers a solid entry in its story. The twists that Hajime brings to the story drastically alter the situation and I’m curious to see what will come of the unfolding situation next week.