Grotesque monsters known as Impurities reside in Magano, a realm parallel to the present day. Exorcists purify these evil apparitions to protect the people. Rokuro Enmado is opposed to becoming an exorcist, even though he has the talent to be one, but an oracle gives him the title of “Twin Star Exorcist,” the name bestowed upon married exorcists. Benio Adashino, the girl who receives the title along with Rokuro, is determined to exorcise all the Kegare, or Impurities, in the world. The two find themselves wrapped up in more and more battles together as the Twin Star Exorcists…
One of this season’s focuses is the mystery behind a small girl that Rokuro and Benito discover in Magano all by herself – Sae. She doesn’t seem to know where she came from, or who her parents are, so the pair have no choice but to take her somewhere safe. The exorcist higher-ups, though, think Sae’s sudden appearance is suspicious and can be linked to all the Dragon Holes that have been appearing around the city. This particular storyline starts off a little slowly, but quickly turns into something fast, full of fights and rather emotional. The way things end between the trio at the end had a real poignancy that I wasn’t expecting; it paves the way for the exorcists to begin gearing up to face the real threat.
After the Sae arc, though, things seemed to slow down again. A couple of the episodes after the denouement really felt like filler. There was one episode that focused on Kinako and how he first met Benio and became her servant. This episode was okay, but this anime has an annoying habit of narrowing the screen view to indicate that what you’re watching happened in the past, or is a reflection or memory of one of the characters. To watch nearly a whole episode in a frame view that didn’t fill my screen was rather annoying. The episode after that began with Rokuro and Benio taking a walk and basically reminiscing about the whole story up until now. Classic filler tactic. Yes, I know what happened, I’ve watched all of the episodes. Must you recap in such dull and minute detail? Of course, these reflections meant that the screen view narrowed again. Such an inconsistent pace!
This season we finally get to see a bit more of the 12 Guardians that have slowly been making themselves know – the 12 strongest exorcists in the world. Instead of just seeing most of them looming powerfully in the distance, we are finally able to see some episodes from their point of view and give them a bit of backstory, which is good because I was beginning to lose track of all the supporting characters that were being introduced in quick succession. I can only hope that with all these new personalities the action scenes that I most enjoy do not suffer too much, as this is where I think Twin Star Exorcists’ strengths really lie.
You can tell that the graphics and animation have improved since the first series. The transitions from reality into Magano are streamlined and fluid and the slight change of style and colour to illustrate this transition are rather beautiful. Twin Star Exorcists has come to have its own iconic style, especially when in Magano and fighting the kegare and basara and unleashing their special attacks.
Rokuro and Benito, as protagonists, play off each other very well. They have progressed from disliking each other initially to tolerating, to getting along and now finally they form a perfect partnership. Their non-exorcist relationship continues to show their humour and foibles and the things they face as the Twin Stars and their sacrifices are always bringing them closer together. They are also growing and maturing, which isn’t something you always see in anime characters.
This season of Twin Star Exorcists has so far been a mixed back. The pace is so inconsistent but when things really take off it’s easy to become engrossed in the battles. Things are always getting harder but the characters continue to get stronger, so nothing becomes too ridiculous with insane power-ups or unbelievable twists. It’s not the strongest season to-date, but hopefully there will be another season that showcases more of what Rokuro and Benio have been building up to this season.