This week it all ends with a bang.
OVERVIEW (SPOILERS BELOW)
“Paradox” features the most worldbuilding of a single Devils’ Line episode yet, which unsurprisingly makes it the show’s strongest installment. Details such as the devil population of Tokyo and the varying awareness of its existence among the public suggest that the main focus moving forward will be Anzai’s detective work; let’s be honest, it seems far more interesting than a simple love story.
Similarly, there’s some great character development for Anzai here as he copes with a suspension for beating Tsukasa’s teacher to a pulp in “Safe House”. Firstly, it’s nice to see some immediate consequences and impact from that decision, and at the same time, the couple’s relationship feels less obsessive and one-sided by putting his feelings on display. For instance, seeing Anzai fret over waiting too long to buy Tsukasa a Christmas present is the exact type of sweet gesture that this show could use to adopt a ‘less is more’ approach to their leads’ chemistry. However, scenes focused on Tsukasa are unfortunately still tedious due to her bizarre inability to talk about anything other than Anzai.
Meanwhile, I loved how subtly the latest string of murders is introduced, with the case creating a feeling of genuine suspense. The twist from appearing to be the work of a killer vampire, to in fact targeting them is well-executed and leads to a shocking cliffhanger. It seems safe to assume that Anzai won’t die so early in the show’s run, but I’m impressed that it also seems difficult to predict how he’ll survive. Furthermore, the mysterious figure behind his assassination attempt is shrouded in mystery while providing some fascinating hints at her motivation.
I’m pleasantly shocked at how quickly Devils’ Line has elevated itself to the status of an intriguing and distinct thriller. Although the lack of motivation being given to Tsukasa is still holding the show back, “Paradox” was the first time where this truly felt outshined by the positives.