I was prepared to have the pain of Holy’s past explored to the extent of losing a loved one but to have such a traumatic ordeal envelop her life, I was not ready for that. The rage Holy feels has been intensely intertwined within the scars of her trauma that unpacking it now involves more than just retribution against Deadend Crow. The nightmare that Deadend Crow exists as within Holy’s mind may be the immediate terror haunting her but will his erasure remedy the depths of her anguish or only reveal to Holy how consumed she has become by his shadow? The pain of her past has hollowed her out and left only rage from her scars to fill it up. This is where the Edens Zero comes in. They will assist Holy in the battle against Deadend Crow and be the light that illuminates the darkness Holy will find herself in after the battle. However Holy decides to move forward after the battle against Deadend Crow, she will have an answer to the emptiness awaiting her once the subject of her darkness is removed. An answer for how to build oneself back up.
The obsession Holy has with Deadend Crow makes so much more sense now. Justice (not the character) isn’t the only aspect driving Holy but rather the primary element sustaining the pursuit is the desire to escape from the prison of darkness she has been consumed by since Atmos Day. What Deadend Crow made Holy suffer that day fractured her and imprinted scars of pain that never stopped searing the torment suffered. The uncontrolled reactions to Deadend Crow’s taunts and the unfiltered tears in response to the memories of that day, each and everyone of those acts were felt heavily. It carried with it a weight that invested you further into Holy’s story and the journey she is currently on. Those scenes brought the conflict against Deadend Crow to the forefront of the focus even with the developments relating to Shiki VS Ziggy taking place.
This chapter has finally allowed Deadend Crow to feel like an actual character you can have genuine emotions for now. Rather than just existing as a blank canvas that sucked up time and panel-focus, he has become a character the readers have invested their fury in. What Deadend Crow did to Holy is unforgivable and representative of the type of antagonist he is. It doesn’t matter if Deadend Crow has no tragic backstory for the readers to relate with, what is important is establishing a character that the readers can feel any type of emotion for, even if contempt. And the villain vibes Deadend Crow is now giving off is immense. Investment into his downfall has been established and I for one am excitedly looking forward to it.
I was hoping the fight with Deadend Crow would take place inside his titanic form but what a bonus it is to also have Laguna and Jinn featured in this battle. What an absolute rush of excitement seeing them enter in the moment and style that they did. Considering both are able to use their Ether Gear inside Deadend Crow’s body, I suspect they were able to nullify Deadend Crow’s Ether Jammer or at least get around it. Holy will likely also be able to use her Ether Gear going forward. The main conflict with Deadend Crow has been setup with Holy which means the one who will ultimately land the finishing or fatal blow on Deadend Crow will be Holy. The pain and rage consuming Holy deserves an outlet and I believe she will get it. Deadend Crow conjuring an Avatar inside his body to fight intruders most likely implies he has something he wishes to protect – a weakness possibly?
The unmasking of Ziggy was wild. Why is it presented in a manner that gets the reader to question whether Ziggy is a robot or not? Ziggy is clearly a robot as evidenced by his fight against Poseidon when his mask was broken and his head knocked off. This human face behind the mask is most likely a ploy to catch Shiki off guard and drum up excitement. It wouldn’t be surprising if Ziggy just built himself a human looking face like he did with Killer’s new model. Ziggy’s face may look human but he isn’t, unless of course the Ziggy we have been seeing in the past was just a shell that the REAL “Ziggy” was controlling. But such a development seems too spicy and complex. Could it happen though? It is entirely possible. The Ziggy we knew may not be the current Ziggy. If the revelation is meant to be Shiki discovering Ziggy is Shiki, I could see alternate versions of Shiki coming into play. It would explain Mashima-sensei’s fascination for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. In that movie there are multiple versions of Doctor Strange with one of the main antagonists being an evil Doctor Strange. The Ziggy relevant in this arc could be an alternate reality Shiki. Whatever the case, very much looking forward to the next chapter.
Enjoyment level: 9.5/10