Review: Tokyo Ghoul √A – Ep. 1-4

I’ll be the first to say that I don’t really know what the hell is going on with this season of Tokyo Ghoul. I love the first season even though it ended really awkwardly. When I heard they followed the new trend of renaming the second season, I was just happy that there would be a second season. In the first episode the show picks up right where the first season left off which was great. We see a transformed and completely badass Kaneki rocking permanent white hair and in control of his power. However he doesn’t do much other than save what members of Anteiku he can find. Meanwhile the humans from the CCG unveil a new device which is basically a living armor made from a Ghoul. It sucks the blood of the user and gives the wearer enhanced abilities and strength. Eventually everyone clears out of the building their in. The CCG takes a massive blow, the members of Anteiku make it out and for some reason Kaneki goes with Aogiri Tree.

The next few episode just shows him tearing ass with them and rocking a weird one piece leather suit that stops at the knees like leather overall shorts. We meet new CCG members including the daughter of Kureo Mado. There’s also a mess of Ghouls introduced and not all of them are a part of Aogiri Tree.

Tokyo Ghoul √A PosterThe real confusion for me comes from the fact that no one is really in charge or at least they’re not showing them. We’re to believe that the Owl is in charge, but I suspect that the Owl is actually a member of Anteiku if you catch my drift. Yet Kaneki continues to go on missions with Toka’s brother… yeah like seriously he’s working with the guy that is partially responsible for his transformation.

Overall the art and art direction remains amazing. They’ve worked around the blood this season toning it down so that they don’t have to resort to a negative image, but at the same time… I kind of miss that. The action is much better and has a nice flow to it. Not that last season was choppy, but particularly the fourth episode had a better overall movement and execution than the first episode of the season. That and the costume designs remain awesome. Other than the leather short overalls.

My one gripe with the Ghouls are the lack of diversity in their powers or their “Kagune.” A lot of the grunt Aogiri Tree members all have the same basic shit and no it doesn’t really matter because they die often and easily, but its visually boring to see so many of them and have them not be threatening and worse be generic.

This season is off to a good start, but it’s definitely not as strong as the last season. With the fourth episode we finally get some of Kaneki’s motivation behind joining Aogiri Tree even if it’s through awkward exposition, but we really need the other shoe to drop if it’s going to have any value to the story. For now though I’ll keep watching even if I hate the four minutes of pointless music that each episode contains.

Score: 4/5

Studio: Pierrot Distributor: Funimation