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The Innocents Finally Start Dying in HUNTER X HUNTER #76-80!

Ep. #76-80 -- W & L. There's actual danger, now!

As morbid as it sounds, I’m honestly glad for all the scenes where the bad guys kill innocents and second-string Hunters. Yes, my heart sank for the brother and sister who were devoured by the Chimera soldiers. Yes, I cringed when they tore apart the gal with the beehive hat.

So… why would I say something so cold hearted?

Because it means the show actually has stakes, now. It’s not just one long training exercise (as it was during the “Hunter Exams,” “Heaven’s Arena” and “Greed Island” arcs), nor is it a convoluted dance with the various blackhats with no immediate aim to actually, you know, stop them (which was what “York New” more-or-less boiled down to).

Since YU YU HAKUSHO kept up an almost non-step level of tension, I can understand why Togashi would want to take edge off for a while and present adventure without any dire consequences. However, you can only play along with that for so long before it gets… dull.

The Chimera Ant Queen is evil incarnate. Her minions pose a formidable, ruthless threat to pro Hunters. Gon and Killua must head straight into a dangerous situation, where the clock’s ticking for all the innocent bystanders, and there’s a very real threat that nobody’s getting out alive. That’s drama I can get behind.

Again, this really seems less like Togashi fulfilling some long-ball plan to ‘age up’ the series and more like him just fitting another new premise under the broad HxH umbrella (instead of starting a new series). I mean, that one A-Side about the leader’s abused upbringing is so jarringly removed from everything that’s come before, it literally feels like it’s from a different show.

I’d place good money on Togashi getting the idea for this after catching ALIENS on TV (much like DBZ obviously started with Toriyama watching SUPERMAN II), but it also seems to have the strain of tokusatsu. The Chimera Queen has this wavering cadence that seems to be derived from traditional Japanese theater. The Witch Bandora in KYORYU SENTAI ZYURANGER spoke the same way, and there are some strong parallels in the way they both churn out this varied menagerie of bizarre beasts.

The major difference, of course, is that the Chimera aren’t taking any prisoners from the onset. So, yeah… 80 episodes in, and we’re finally past the set-up, baby!

Watch "Reunion × And × Understanding" and "Unease × And × Sighting" and "Very × Rapid × Reproduction" and "No × Good × NGL" and "Evil × And × Terrible" and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode.

About the Author

Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk
Lurkeroon April 2, 2014 at 5:43 p.m.

Finally past the set up? Oh, Tom, you're so naive.

I definitely had the feeling that Hunter X Hunter was written in a way that Togashi could explore different Genre without having to develop multiple series. I wouldn't be surprised if the next arc was something like Mobile Suit Gundam.

I also appreciated the stakes being raised a little. Although, after seeing Gon get his hands blown off and practically laugh it off I would never take a treat seriously again.

jj_jacksonon April 2, 2014 at 8:44 p.m.

One of the reasons i like this saga its like the first real danger no rules, use everything you've learned or die type of saga which is why i fancy it a little above the york new city arc. i mean the boys were never in any certain danger in that arc because the trope was mostly after kurapika.

I think this saga ups the anti. now i haven't seen the end of this arc so i cant judge it completely.

Donwunon April 3, 2014 at 3:34 a.m.

wow....so for you the show has just got started because it finally uses the conventional story method of clear good vs clear evil.....

Honestly you may be in for a nasty surprise with this arc as it may seem straight forward now but after a while it goes back into what you have been seeing......and complaining about all along

I'll say this, from my rewatching this new reboot at a more mature age / level. i now really appreciate this show as the anti-shounen anime series where Togashi explores the elements of shounen and characterisation instead of actually executing traditional / predictable shounen story progression, which for me has been immensely more enjoyable that the traditional chase the bad guy, save the day you can see in almost any other shounen series

This particular saga focuses more on characterisation and introspection more than any other so far and again things are going to be more dialogue driven and focused on exploring elements of story telling rather than simply resolving conflict through violence and action

Belive it or not Tom you may dislike this saga more than the rest the further you get into it....which is sad as i thought you would appreciate this show more for it's different approach

and calling this show dull.....well...couldn't disagree more

Lastly to anyone watching the more recent episodes who wants to get deep into conversation / analytics, check out Uberhikari's weekly reviews....seriously good food for thought on this saga...highly recommended

Marshal Victoryon April 3, 2014 at 10:52 a.m.

Um yes no an yes an maybe? The show had danger before an people died in the trials.It may not have been as brutal but people die in greed island as well. Each arch tho is a difrent gene as pointed out. The hunter test arc felt more like exploration learning of the world . Rather a good world build arch.

The arena arc felt more as training an learning of the power set up in the world.

Greed Island felt more a game with in a story an more training .

Chimera Ant feels like war.

All 4 arcs had death. All 4 archs had evil. Only the Chimera Ant arc feels like a war story. Difrence is the ants feel evil now.

@Donwun: Id bet he will end up likeing this arc because of its deep sub plots an twists. Not for what he likes now tho.

Kino88on April 3, 2014 at 4:07 p.m.
Woo hoo!, sweet guess I spoke too soon Lol

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