Hello fellow travelers, Come, make yourself at home at Episode 9 of Kino’s Journey. This week’s episode is all over the place, but I don’t mean that in a bad way. In a refreshing change of pace, this episode features a series of short stories in the aptly-named ‘various countries’.
Japanese title: 色々な国
A collection of short stories about various different countries visited by Kino or Shizu. We see a country where you can earn points for good deeds and a country where you can only visit on the condition that your memory will be erased afterward. Plus, there is a special surprise from the author at the end! Start your engines and let’s get going!
I’m pretty sure this episode is the first one that outright states that Kino is actually a girl. I couldn’t help but love the shot of her with pouty shiny lips and sparkly eyes when the bandit was sneaking a peek at her with his binoculars.
He’s Seen Things
The older of the two bandits has seen a lot of things. He knew with one glance that he should pick a fight with neither Kino nor with Shizu-sama’s crew (did you see how cute and poofy Riku was? Perfect for hiding hand grenades). What caused him to get such a good eye for this? Well, he was only attacked by Kino’s Master herself when she was younger!
Sweet, sweet virtue points
One of the countries Kino visits has a system where citizens can earn points for committing good deeds. The country is bathed in a heavenly blue glow, and even Kino’s hair and eyes are depicted as blue (perhaps she is more virtuous than any of the other citizens?). We learn that the president of the country has accrued a huge amount of points simply so that he has enough to get away with killing somebody. What’s scary is that he doesn’t have a reason nor a target in mind; he simply wants to kill SOMEBODY. Although that makes him insane in my eyes, it’s interesting how the desire to kill somebody has forced him to have a positive impact on the lives of countless others. But does that mean he should get away with murder? I’ll leave that up to you. (Please, don’t say yes…)
Shokugeki no Kino
The change in tension between the virtuous country and this one was so fast I almost got whiplash. Kino comes across a country where she is mistaken for a traveling genius chef. I’m happy to learn that she is much worse at the whole cooking malarkey than I am. But, well, I guess once you get something into your head, it just sticks. That is why the chefs are convinced Kino’s dish is a work of genius. Despite the use of the red, white, and black shot that is usually used for death scenes… I think I’ll pass on Kino’s fried chicken, thank you. I assume it was the real wandering chef who rearranged her recipe into a ‘mild’ version.
Is Ti an angel?
She writes that she wants everybody’s wishes to come true.
But says wishing won’t help anything.
Still precious, though.
Kino, the artist
Kino visits a country where she gets to have a lot of fun, on the condition that she would lose all memory of it. This was by far my favorite country of the episode, as Kino’s reactions were so cute. We don’t often get to see her express many emotions, so it was great to see her so frustrated over not being able to remember what she got up to. The picture she had was also super adorable, and everybody looked so happy!
The Country of Author Afterward
Just when we thought we’d seen all the countries for the episode, there was one more! Kino and Hermes find themselves passing through a strange country covered in words. It’s the country of the animated author afterward! It seems Kino’s Journey’s original creator Keiichi Sigsawa has finally achieved his dream of getting an animated afterward! Congratulations! Is this the first time it has ever been done? If you know of any other animated author afterwards, then let me know!
Until Our Next Journey
This was a fun episode made up of various different stories that couldn’t be made into full episodes. Most of them were quite light-hearted and showed that Kino’s Journey isn’t all serious all the time. Getting to see the cute side of Kino was a real treat, and having a few cameos from Shizu-sama’s party made the episode even more enjoyable. Which was your favorite country?
I wonder if the next episode is going to be a serious one to make up for the silliness this week. We’ll find out next time!