Hell’s Paradise Episode 12

Hell’s Paradise Episode 12

The Elixer of Life Is a Lie

Hell’s Paradise Episode 12 revealed the truth about the island. It’s not the legendary Shinsenkyo and there is no Elixer of Life there. Instead, the island is a place for human experimentation. Oh, and the souls of the dead don’t get to go to Horai.

So, what does this all mean? Well, it’s not good news for any of our heroes. And Hoko has it worst of all. He believed that his soul and the souls of all the other villagers went to paradise. But, Mu Dan tells him that’s not true.

Mu Dan shattered Hoko’s entire belief system with a single sentence. Why did all the villagers turn into trees? They were being experimented on by the Tensen and their leader. They were prototypes. That’s all there is to it. They weren’t being blessed by gods.

Yuzuriha covered in slime (again) from the anime series Hell's Paradise Episode 12
Yuzuriha covered in slime (again)

For the criminals on the island, the fact that there’s no Elixer of Life on the island is bad news. If they don’t return with the Elixer, they won’t receive a pardon. And, I’m going to assume it would be bad for the Yamada Asaemon to return empty-handed, too.

But, despite what Mu Dan said, the Elixer of Life does seem to be real. The leader of Iwagakure is immortal. And from what we saw, he doesn’t have the same kind of immortality as the Tensen. His body isn’t made of plants. He’s just immortal. Though, there does seem to be a catch.

As Mu Dan mentioned in this episode, there are different kinds of “immortality.” Eternal life and eternal youth aren’t the same. Considering what the leader of Iwagakure looks like, he probably has eternal life. So, he could be heading to the island in search of eternal youth. But, does that even exist?

Tao Strengths and Weaknesses

We’re 12 episodes in, and the concept of Tao strengths and weaknesses now exists. The thing is, we don’t really know anything about it. We know there are different types of Tao. And we know Mu Dan is weak to Sagiri’s type of Tao.

So, here’s the part of the review where I complain. Hell’s Paradise is a shounen battle series. That means it’s like Naruto, One Piece, Dragon Ball, My Hero Academia, etc. And for a shounen battle series, the power system is kind of a big deal.

Naruto has chakra. One Piece has devil fruits and haki. Dragon Ball has ki or something (I don’t know, I don’t watch Dragon Ball). And My Hero Academia has quirks. Hell’s Paradise has Tao. But, we don’t know anything about it — and that’s a problem.

Mu Dan using a jutsu from the anime series Hell's Paradise Episode 12
Mu Dan using a jutsu

Without a well-defined power system, fights don’t aren’t very interesting. If there aren’t set rules, then anything can happen. And it’s not fun when things suddenly happen out of nowhere. You don’t want a fight to be predictable. But, you want it to have structure. Hell’s Paradise still doesn’t have that structure.

Now, you might be thinking that’s fine. We’re only 12 episodes in, after all. The series is only getting started, right? Not quite. From my understanding, Season 1 is going to cover about 1/3 of the manga. And the manga is complete. So, we’re a third of the way into the series and still don’t have a defined power system.

Meanwhile, Naruto introduced us to chakra and jutsu in the very first episode. That’s the standard for shounen battle series. They pretty much all do that except for Hell’s Paradise. And because of that, I have no interest in the fights in this series.

Hell’s Paradise Manga

Hell’s Paradise Manga

Search for the Elixer of Life with Gabimaru the Hollow in this action-packed adventure through Paradise (or Hell).

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Umbrella and Ink

Even though I have my complaints about Episode 12, one good thing did come out of it. Senta is dead. At least, I hope he’s dead. It’s very possible that the others somehow turn him back into a human with some magic. Hopefully, that doesn’t happen.

I’m going to guess Senta is gone for good, though. We got his little tragic backstory right before he died. So, there’s no real reason to bring him back. I could only see it happening for Yuzuriha’s character arc. But, she’ll probably develop fine without Senta’s involvement.

Also, I have to say, Senta’s tragic backstory wasn’t very interesting. He wanted to be a painter, but his parents said no. He had to become an executioner instead. So, he gave up on his dream of painting. That’s it. That’s his entire backstory. It was on par with a Demon Slayer backstory.

Yuzuriha smiling from the anime series Hell's Paradise Episode 12
Yuzuriha smiling

At this point, I’m wondering what’s going to happen to Yuzuriha. She’s the only human on the island without a partner. So, unless someone else dies and she partners up with their “other half,” she’s on her own. And being alone doesn’t seem very good on this island.

Of course, she’s not really alone. She has Sagiri and Gabimaru. But, she’s kind of a third wheel there. So, who else could she pair up with? The most likely option is Fuchi if something happens to Gantetsutai. Shion and Nurugai are already a new pair. And I can’t see Choubei or Touma teaming up with anyone other than each other.

But, I actually don’t expect Yuzuriha to find a new partner. My prediction is that she’s going to die at some point. I have a feeling she’ll sacrifice herself to protect Gabimaru (or Sagiri) so he can go home to his wife.

Conclusion

What do you think about Hell’s Paradise Episode 12? Were you surprised that the Elixer of Life isn’t on the island? How do you feel about Tao as a power system? And do you think Senta will ever come back? Let me know in the comments.

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Finally, I’d like to thank Roman and JasonHK for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month. To learn more about how you can help support this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

My review of Episode 13 is available now.

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