Tokyo Ghoul:re Chapter 56: The Second King

Long live the king.

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Impression

Is this real life? Is this actually happening?

I can’t get over how each chapter of :re manages to consistently surprise or subvert our expectations. It never manages to fall in line with the predictions of the fandom – and believe me, as insufferable as it can be at the worst of times, it is definitely imaginative. I think a lot of us were expecting Eto to mount a comeback somehow – it was already a huge surprise to learn that Kaneki could so easily outmanoeuvre and injure her like that last week. He’s now taken full advantage of his speed and precision to go as far as to defeat her outright – and to top it all off, he’s not even any more injured than he was before! Kaneki killed and ate Eto without his own kakuja and while he was one-armed! Of course, that assumes that a kakuja would be an overall benefit to his fighting ability, and that may not be the case given its latest appearance against Arima (cf. the fight against Shinohara). He’s eaten Eto though, so things may now be different – I don’t know how much the strength of the ghoul you cannibalize affects your own kakuja, but it must mean something. I wonder how she tastes? Sorry, mind in the gutter there. And I like Hinami, I’m not supposed to be betraying best girl for Eto.

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But I do feel almost obliged to mention Kaneki x Eto – while we’re on the topic, that is. It’s… well, closer to existing than I was previously willing to recognize. I’ll admit that. And it all sounds very erotic, with all manner of lines from ‘I love you, Kaneki Ken!’ and ‘SOMETHING WONDERFUL IS POURING OUT… AAAAAAAAAAAAA’ to ‘I’ve really grown so fond of you! We’re totally the same!’ I stand by my views, though. For one, she’s supposedly dead – so for now, that’s the end of that. And for another, it takes two to tango, and Kaneki honestly looks like he doesn’t give a fuck that Takatsuki-sensei was confessing to him.

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Is Eto really dead? If she is, it would have been nice if she’d gotten a longer backstory than just a single page showing Yoshimura giving his baby to Noro. But this series has never been one to anticipate character deaths with obviously placed flashbacks as death flags. If she has Noro or Kanae-level regeneration, it would make sense if she survived being bisected in half (she’s a true half-ghoul now, har har) and that’s a likely thing given that it was her kagune who granted them that power. Eto is rather detached from her kakuja as well, so it could very well be the case that Kaneki is just eating her kakuja shell and not her actual body. She ended up being awfully vulnerable once her kakuja was damaged though – once she got hurt, she went into full insanity mode. Was that just her reacting to the pain, or her kakuja going out of control?

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Ui and Washuu have also now walked in on Kaneki eating the One-Eyed Owl. I think it’s just Ui actually, assuming Washuu is still on a lower floor – which means he’s even more fucked if Kaneki decides to stop playing Haise and attacks him. It’s an important turning point for this manga, because how he reacts to his former co-worker will indicate exactly what he’s planning to do in the future. It’s safe to say that if he’s on SSS-rank now as a ghoul, then Ui has little no chance of grazing him at all – more importantly, he’ll notice an unconscious Tsukiyama in the corner (yes, he’s still there) and Kaneki’s actions then will determine the future course of this manga. Is he going to lead Aogiri now, as the ‘Second King’? It would fulfil the foreshadowed parallel with the first Aogiri arc. Or will he go back to CCG, and we start a jailbreak arc? I mean, if Ui has caught him cannibalizing, he’s pretty clearly not Haise any more. If he can pull off some sort of elaborate lie, it might work. After all, just like his mentor he’ll need… a new quinque.

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