Ya know, sometimes you just have to hate certain characters. They may serve a small purpose, but they deserve to die a cold hard death.

In this case it is not Ikoma, or Mumei, or Ayame, not even Kurusu. The scumbags aboard the Koutetsujou are the old white men who either used to be some kind of council or want to be some kind of council. They bully Ayame, because she isn’t perfect. They pick on her, criticizing her decision to accept the Kabaneri, because they supremely kick ass. They demand that they be in charge of the Koutetsujou and take the master key from Ayame.

Their first act as douchelords of the Koutetsujou is to change the course the Koutetsujou is headed. The mountain path is much more dangerous as it allows the Kabane to drop on top of it. The old path, around the mountains, was longer but safer.

Just to spite those old coots, the Kabane do attack the train while it traverses the mountains. There are a number of casualties and massive damage to the body of the train. While the old white men try to use the master key to detach the car the Kabaneri are in, a Kabane skilled with a sword is overpowering Kurusu and making its way through the train.

Well isn’t it a good think Ikoma still loves the humans who hate him.

Ikoma ran across the tops of the cars in order to fight the Kabane. He loses his energy though, as Kabaneri need blood to survive. While everyone is willing to die to avoid giving Ikoma blood, Ayame slices open her arm and holds it out to Ikoma as a contract. She will give him blood and he will protect the Koutetsujou.

He happily obliges and in a matter of seconds he destroys the Kabane with renewed vigor. Mumei is still hungry for blood though.

Afterwards, the old men are back at Ayame about how no one will risk themselves to feed the ‘monsters’ who just saved their lives. Ayame has taken back the master key and control of the Koutetsujou, and declares that she will give her blood. Well of course after her moving performance and Ikomas actions a number of people also offer their blood, including the train engineer and Kurusu.

When everyone has gotten over their fear of the Kabaneri, things calm down. The Bushi finally examine Ikomas inventions, and Kurusu is given a sword coated with the Kabane heart cage, making it the only sword able to kill a Kabane.

Just when all is happy, they reach a new city, but the bridge wont drop. It is over run with Kabane. There is evidence of survivors so a team is deployed.

One of the survivors in Enoku, a friend of Mumeis. Or a former friend. From the conversation I would say Enoku is a Kabaneri as well, and worked with Mumeis ‘onii-san’ but was thrown away when he lost one of his legs.

This meeting puts her in a foul mood and she is short with everyone. She refuses to be part of the team to return to the city and operate the crane. A large piece of debris was laying across the tracks, preventing the Koutetsujou from passing. Running into it and pushing through would only derail the train. She decides to attack the Kabane in the way of the crane by herself.

The sudden interest in being strong is related back to her fear of being thrown away be her oniisan. A few episodes ago she says eventually she will be a full Kabane, and that her oniisan gave her the name Mumei. So it may be like a stolkholm syndrome type scenario. Who has Kabaneri ‘minions’ anyways? Someone creepy no doubt.

Mumeis public opinions had been on the up rise lately, but after meeting Enoku it was almost as if she was reminded of her mission, which wasn’t to have people like her. When a dog died on the train after suffering with a broken leg, she told the grieving kids that it was better the dog died before the kids could abandon it. I think she is speaking about Enoku, not the dog. But this marks the downward spiral.

At the boiler, she becomes overly cocky and sloppy. She has not had any blood as of yet, not since embarking on the Koutetsujou. Her focus is not sharp, her moves are sluggish, and she is tossed from the platform into a pit. Ikoma abandons the crane with the debris still on the tracks to rescue her, and they are caught in a rock slide.

The tension in this show is amazing. There is a brief moment and a look of fear on the characters faces just before they pull the string on the suicide bomb. It is not an easy thing to do. Often times the characters still see the body, but their heart is blow out. I don’t know what would be more upsetting, a Kabane or your friends dead body next to you. The suicide bombs are such an accepted concept as well. Granted Ikoma is the only person to be able to stop the Kabane virus that we know of, as we don’t know how Mumei was transformed, but it proves it can be done. It just has to be done before the virus spreads to the brain. I would love for the Bushi or Shogun to ask him about the process and try it out.

Usually Koutetsujou no Kabaneri is perfect with its animation. Well, its flaw is window hatches. They have this beautiful, picturesque train speeding down a track surrounded by water color trees. In order for the characters to see these trees they open a hatch, a thickly outlined, one solid color hatch that sticks out like a sore thumb.

So will Ikoma and Mumei survive the rockslide? Will the Koutetsujou make it through the city, and what the hell is that Titan-sized Kabane doing crawling up the wall??

Rating: A-