Kaiju No. 8 episode 8 review: growing bonds and the tease of another threat

Hoshina goes all out against Kaiju No. 8, Kafka gets a promotion and new winged kaiju get ready to attack. Read more in our Kaiju No. 8 episode 8 review.

kaija no. 8 kafka as full officer

The Kaiju No. 8 episode 8 review

kaiju no. 8 mina and hoshina

The episode starts with a bang as Kafka is forced to evade the blades of Vice-Captain Hoshina who’s going all out to kill Kaiju No. 8. After losing and regenerating a couple of limbs, Kafka manages to break one of Hoshina’s swords before making his escape. It cuts to the aftermath of the mushroom kaiju attack, with Hoshina being sad over failing to kill Kafka before he and Mina are informed that Kaiju No. 9 (the evil kaiju that Kafka fought last episode) can disguise itself as a human. At the same time, No. 9 snacks on someone and takes on their appearance as well as their car.

Meanwhile, Iharu and Ichikawa recover from the attack from the last episode and the Third Division celebrates their first successful mission. The Division members also fight among themselves and recognize where they need improvement and Kafka gets promoted to a full officer. A little light is shed on Izumo’s backstory and he and Aoi get a little closer over not wanting people to die during kaiju attacks.

After Kafka is done studying for the night, he finds Hoshina recreating their fight from earlier so that the Vice-Captain can kill him the next time they meet. Kafka vows to be helpful in the fight against the kaiju and Hoshina responds by saying he can have 1% of his expectations since that’s also the power output from his suit. The episode leaves on a cliffhanger as several winged kaiju are flying in the sky and another intelligent kaiju like No. 9 gives the order for them to descend.

The Vice-Captain doesn’t fool around

kaiju no. 8 hoshina in battle

The episode’s biggest strength is showing how deadly Hoshina can be when he aims to kill. Kafka can barely dodge his attacks and even then, he still manages to lose a hand and a foot to the Vice-Captain. On top of that, Hoshina also discovers where Kafka’s kaiju core is and immediately goes in for a killing strike. Thankfully, Kafka manages to use his kaiju biology to stop his sword before breaking it and running away.

This is probably the fastest and most well-animated fight sequence in the show so far and that’s thanks to Hoshina’s speed. The guy’s practically a blur and some of his attacks easily catch Kafka off-guard. His intelligence is also apparent when he charges up a double slash attack and uses it as a decoy for his actual attack: a slash meant to go through Kafka’s core which he’d discovered the location of a few seconds earlier.

It does a great job of establishing how ruthless and effective Hoshina can be when he sets his mind to putting a kaiju six feet under. His personality becomes no-nonsense and tactical and the seriousness in his eyes reflects that. Hoshina also gets points for realizing that Kaiju No. 8 fought like a human, didn’t seem to want to hurt him, and didn’t just attack people at random, which adds to how smart he is. 

What also makes this fight interesting is Kafka’s unwillingness to hurt Hoshina, yet still being forced to go all-out to ensure his survival. He also displays his smarts when he uses his kaiju body to form teeth to bite down and stop his superior’s blade from going through his body since he also knows that once his core is ripped apart, it’s game over for him. My only complaint here is that the fight lasted longer but otherwise, it was incredible.

Back to normal life (for now)

kaiju no. 8 hoshina and ichikawa

Part of the episode shifts back to normal Defense Force stuff (when they’re not killing kaiju, that is). The arguments they get into during their party about where others went wrong and what areas they need improvement is a decent way of showing how dedicated these guys are to their jobs. It’s also heartwarming for them all to celebrate Kafka becoming a full officer and shows that despite their arguing a few moments earlier, they still care about and celebrate each other’s successes.

The rest of the episode (aside from the ending) isn’t very interesting. Kafka and Kikoru go to see Ichikawa and Iharu before the party begins and Izumo speaks with the chef who organized the party’s food to tell him about how he and his father are doing. It hints that Izumo’s dad never wanted his son to become a Defense Force soldier and that they’ve had a falling out.

It’s nothing that hasn’t been seen before, but it does make Izumo a little more interesting. He and Aoi have been acting like rivals up until this point, so seeing them bonding over their shared interest in protecting people is nice, but it isn’t much since we don’t know either of them very well. As for the hospital visit scene, it’s amusing when Kikoru repeatedly punches Kafka for blushing when Iharu compliments Kaiju No. 8 for how he attacked No. 9.

He also gets berated by Kikoru for getting into a fight with Hoshina and she questions if she should have faith Kafka because of what he is. Aside from Kikoru’s punching and pondering, there’s nothing too remarkable about these scenes. Kafka also meets with Mina and learns that Hoshina recommended him for a promotion before being ordered to give 50 push-ups since he didn’t address his superior officer properly and being told it’ll be a while before he and Mina fight together. Again, nothing too interesting here, and the joke about Kafka being upset about doing push-ups because of not properly addressing Mina doesn’t land since it was already used in a previous episode.

kaiju no. 8 kafka as kaiju

We also get to witness how No. 9 manages to disguise himself as human: by expanding his head and swallowing his victims to take on their appearance. It’s a bit horrifying, but aside from that, No. 9 doesn’t get much screen time this week and his one scene is just okay.

The final scenes where Hoshina recreates the fight he had with Kafka earlier further reinforces his dedication to his job. It’s also nice to see that he seems to like Kafka since he helped find where the mushroom Yoju cores are located within their bodies, but that’s about it. What makes this scene sort of cool is the fluid attacks Hoshina displays, how smooth the animation is when he performs them, and how scary he gets when talking about cutting Kafka into ribbons.

Besides Hoshina’s training, there’s not much else, except for when Kafka gets scared of how serious Hoshina is about killing him. If you remember what happened in episode 2, this callback will at the very least amuse you. The tease for another kaiju attack happening next episode being led by another intelligent kaiju is rather effective. These new winged kaiju have a more brutal design, given their sharp beaks, horns, and the scales/fins on their backs. I’m excited to see what sort of trouble they stir up next episode and who their master is.

Kaiju No. 8 episode 8 is a serviceable entry for this anime series. Hoshina and the party scene do a lot of the heavy lifting this time. It’s bogged down a bit with trying to develop the relationship between some characters as well as being a little slow in moving the plot forward. I am looking forward to the winged kaiju attacking next week, though.

Final score: 5/10

Kaiju No. 8 can be streamed through Crunchyroll.

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