Dark Gathering Episode 3 Review


This episode begins after the ending of Episode 2. Keitarou brings himself to go back to Yayoi’s home and tutor her, simply because Eiko is there and it’s a favor to her.

When he arrives, Yayoi is still trying to get nail clippings from him. Keitarou is not having any of this whatsoever.

dark gathering episode 3 review 0004 yayoi keitarou nails
Yayoi trying to forcefully cut his nails

Eiko, sensing Keitarou’s growing frustration, suggests they go to another haunted location. Keitarou puts his foot down and absolutely refuses to go. Yayoi seems a bit confused, telling Eiko that she thought Keitarou liked curses, “because the curse on his hand is so easily cured.” She thought he purposefully was keeping it.

dark gathering episode 3 review 0003 eiko and yayoi
Yayoi and Eiko in the car

Yayoi and Eiko go to a shrine with a plan that isn’t very well explained — something Yayoi is apparently very bad at. Regardless, she wants to cure Keitarou of his curse for him. She goes to this statue temple of a goddess surrounded by Juzo statues.

Juzo is the god of protecting children, and the goddess — who also has a status depicting her likeness — seemingly collects the souls of the unborn (stillborn or miscarried fetuses and babies) for her army.

dark gathering episode 3 review 0002 spirits
The spirits attacking Yayoi

Yayoi has to avoid these quick and nimble fetus spirits, eventually spraining her ankle in the process. She seems to be aiming for the Goddess Statue.

Eiko runs to Keitarou for help, who comes to rescue Yayoi by luring the spirits away from her, making it easier to escape. Yayoi is able to break a finger off of the statue and pockets it before they leave.

We get an adorable scene of Keitarou carrying Yayoi on his back, and Yayoi tells him that she wanted to save him because she considers them friends.

dark gathering episode 3 review 0001 keitarou and yayoi
Cute scene between the two of them

It isn’t until the end of the episode that we get any kind of explanation. Basically, the only way to kill a spirit is to have a stronger spirit kill it. If you’ll recall, that’s why Yayoi has so many spirits locked in her bedroom — she’s growing and cultivating spirits to help her rescue her mother from the spirit who caused the car accident, leading to the death of her father.

dark gathering episode 3 review 0000 yayoi bedroom
Yayoi explaining everything to Keitarou so he isn’t afraid

She also explains that it’s through these plushies housing demonic spirits that they act as a proxy for the real humans she wants to protect — so when a demon attacks Eiko, for instance, the doll or plushie Yayoi designates to protecting Eiko gets harmed in the process instead. This is why she wanted Keitarou’s fingernails; to create one of these dolls, you need a piece of the person. She’s essentially trying to protect Keitarou.

Her plan is also to get that goddess from earlier to kill the spirit that cursed Keitarou and Eiko.

Opinions / Analysis

This series is so horrible at explaining things. Half the time, I have no idea why Yayoi is doing absolutely anything. Hell, I didn’t even know why we were at that temple for a decent amount of time.

The animation also irks me sometimes. It looks extremely soft and bright, where colors bleed outside the characters. I get that it’s an artstyle, but it just looks insanely strange and doesn’t match Yayoi’s aesthetic at all.

Despite that, this episode felt pretty enjoyable. Watching Yayoi struggle on her own was pretty interesting, and I almost wished she figured things out on her own without Keitarou coming to save her.

What do you all think?

Check out our coverage of other anime this season here on LAN:
Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War Episode 19 Review
Zom 100: Bucket List of the Dead Episode 5 Review
My Happy Marriage Episode 6 Review

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