After last week’s explosive episode, it’s time to dial things back a bit. Episode 11 gives us some quiet time between Ash and Eiji as they try to figure out their next move in their ongoing war with Golzine and his men.
Ash and Eiji managed to escape Golzine’s mansion, leaving Dino scrambling to get his affairs in order. With Dino distracted, Ash and crew take a moment to rest and plan the next phase of their plan. Meanwhile, Arthur is tasked with bringing Ash in once and for all…
Not so subtle subtext: Despite nothing being confirmed (at all) the relationship between Ash and Eiji has been at the center of much debate with many seeing some romantic leanings in their interactions with one another. Well, shippers rejoice, because this week’s episode is chock full of lingering stares, soft intimate touches, and moments dripping with unrestrained sexual tension…. Okay, I added the last part, but there are some pretty tender moments between Ash and Eiji in this week’s episode nonetheless.
Themes & Trivia
Meaningful Title: All of the episode titles have been references to novels and short stories by famous American authors. This week’s episode is no different, borrowing its title from F. Scott Fitzgerald’s 1922 novel, The Beautiful and the Damned. The story follows the lives of the young elites in New York City during the Jazz Age of the 1920’s.
Achilles Heel: A weakness or vulnerability. The name comes from the hero, Achilles, from Greek myth. When he was born it was foretold that he would die young, so in an attempt to save him from his fate, his mother Thetis dipped him into the River Styx (known to bestow invulnerability). However, when she placed him in the water she held him by his heel, preventing the area from being washed by the water and as a result leaving it vulnerable. Achilles was later killed by a poisoned arrow shot at his heel.
New York Stock Exchange: Is an American stock exchange located in New York City, and the largest equities-based exchange in the world.
Despite my strong opinion on the nature of Ash and Eiji’s relationship, even I can admit that they were really laying the subtext on thick with this week’s episode, HOWEVER, I don’t think it rises to the level of romance some people would like it to. I mean yes, I see the way they look at each other and YES, I see how vulnerable Ash is with Eiji, BUT, I don’t necessarily see that as romantic in nature. Ash is not in a place to be open to a healthy relationship, at least not right now and honestly, I don’t ever think that he will be ready… all of the trauma he has experienced, there just isn’t a quick fix. As much as Eiji helps make things better, he doesn’t erase years of abuse and violence. So, yeah… My stance is still the same, but, I do acknowledge the importance of their bond to the narrative and to their individual character development…
Also, Max in a fake mustache and Ash in glasses #PERFECTION
Calm Before the Storm
This week’s episode took a step back from the violence, highlighting some of the softer, more intimate moments between our characters. Ash and Eiji get some quiet time alone together. Meanwhile, Arthur and his crew prepare for their next attack. What lies in store for the Banana Splits? Who knows, but, for now, they’re taking it easy.
I’ll be back next week with another BANANA FISH review, but in the meantime, be sure to check out MANGA.TOKYO’s other amazing Summer 2018 reviews!!
Summer 2018 | Anime Info | Simulcast