From Now On – これから
Not long after they left Awa, Yona and gang was joined by a mysterious blond who was none other than Ouryuu. So, where to now?
Ouryuu (Zeno) joined the group swiftly and of his own accord, before any of the dragons even sensed his approach. Now, someone needs to explain how that could happen to me, but I guess we can overlook it for now. In case anyone thinks that the anime rushed the story for the end of this season, they didn’t. Things are happening according to the manga, I’ve never seen an anime adaptation which stuck closer to its manga predecessor before.
Carefree would be the best word to descrbe the always-hungry Zeno who was attracted to Yona’s side, seemingly by the smell of food. Unlike the other dragons, he didn’t seemed to have experienced the overwhelming reaction to Yona like the others have and this just aroused more suspicions that he couldn’t be the real Ouryuu. Although I’m sure Kija was just kidding when he challenged Zeno to prove himself (because how can the dragons not know??), Zeno couldn’t rise to the challenge and his position even got “threatened” by Hak. Honestly, I couldn’t agree more when they said that Hak was more like the tough Ouryuu than frail Zeno, but Zeno is without a doubt the real deal. I choose to believe that Hak might be the so-called “sword and shield” of the king, because he has to be someone special. I don’t think someone who’s that strong, and whose been in the company of such beasts could be just a normal bodyguard who’s good at fighting. I just refuse to.
With all four dragons gathered, they decided to head back to Ik-su for further instructions. According to Ik-su, the “sword and shield” of the king will awaken once the four dragons are gathered, but it doesn’t seem to be time for that yet. Despite his usual carefree demenour, Zeno suddenly turned serious and asked the most important question which nobody bothered to ask until now – what does Yona intend to do after gethering all the dragons? I suspect the other dragons just joined because they are dragons and are attracted to Yona/King Hiryuu so they probably wouldn’t have cared for whatever intentions Yona has in mind. However, Zeno was different and we start to get a hint that he might not be all that he seems to be. Unfortunately, we aren’t going to get more on Zeno’s background, as the spotlight shifts to Yona and Hak.
Having graduated from bow practice, Yona started practising swordsmanship – though I wonder how her practice is going to aid her in actual fights. She was stopped by Hak, who brought her to shelter out of worry for his princess’s health. I’ve never thought of him as good-looking in the manga, but he sure looks good in the anime. Perhaps all you had to do is to wet someone’s hair to make it look extra silky and make them look slightly sad to bishify them, but Hak’s really got me tapping the screencap key continuously this episode. Just like the many other scenes we witnessed before, Yona was just this close to uncovering Hak’s feelings for her before her own denseness took over and just ruined Hak’s chance to confess. For anyone who might have been unsure whether Hak’s feelings for Yona were that of a protective brother or prospective lover, that kiss on the forehead should be more than enough to convince you that he treasures her a lot and more than as a little sister.
As dawn breaks, Yona will once again set off on her journey to all parts of Kouka kingdom to save other people like those in the port of Awa. That’s what she’s decided on and it does sound promising – as a story line for those 100-over episode-long shounen animes. Meanwhile, Soo Won’s determined to achieve what he’s set out to do and it does seem like he’s been making progress. Although Yona doesn’t seem intent on regaining the throne or exposing Soo Won as a traitor, I’m sure their paths will cross in future and the real truth will get exposed. Though I’m not too sure when we’ll get to see that happen, as nothing has been announced yet, I’m sure the first season was enough of a success to put plans of the second season in motion.
In general, I had a great time watching Akatsuki no Yona. Although it might not have been one of the top must-watch shows of both seasons it spanned across, I’m giving it an 8/10 for well-timed comedic scenes (which has been missing from the anime durig the second half), lovely music, promising storyline and colourful cast! Time to start reading the manga now~