Joran: Jin Questions His Loyalties After [SPOILER]’s “Death”

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Episode 6 of Joran: The Princess of Snow and Blood, "Confidential File 623, Daybreak," now streaming on Crunchyroll.

With Makoto and Elena out of the picture, Jin had already become increasingly isolated within the constraints of Nue’s power structure. The veteran executioner has been nothing short of relentless and loyal to the Shogunate throughout Joran so far, but cracks seem to be forming within Jin’s commitment to Nue and the Shogun himself.

Though Joran has a habit of faking its audience out, Jin seems to have lost one of his closest allies of all and it has him looking for answers in Episode 6 -- and questioning his own role within the patriarchy.

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Following the news of Sawa’s supposed death, Jin personally checks in on her status. Having been apparently fooled by Asahi’s grieving sister act, he leaves Sawa’s funeral to look into Makoto’s disappearance following her betrayal of the Shogunate. His search leads him to the clinic where Makoto was treated following her brief battle with Janome. Jin tries to interrogate the doctor who treated her but is initially rebuffed -- causing him to take a more violent approach to his questioning.

The doctor states that Jin’s way of doing things is unsustainable, and says oppressing the people will only cause them to fight harder until they’ve overthrown the Shogunate’s government. Jin reluctantly accepts his reasoning, though seems frustrated while acknowledging the futility of any such rebellion.

Jin gets whatever answers he sought from the doctor and violently murders him afterward. Though he might seem somewhat distraught over his role in the Shogunate’s grand schemes, he’s been responsible for ordering a lot of the atrocities we’ve seen in Joran so far -- all in the name of maintaining order. Though he might be questioning those actions now, his part in such atrocities up to this point must be acknowledged.

Following his interrogation of the clinic doctor, Jin attends a cabinet meeting with the Shogunate in attendance, giving the audience their first bit of exposure to the malevolent patriarch. After the meeting's abrupt conclusion, the Shogun pulls Jin aside, congratulating him on Janome’s defeat and establishing that the source of the blue blood’s power is now within their control. Though this most likely assumes that Sawa is still alive, Jin chooses to not inform Yoshinobu of her apparent death – hiding the fact that producing more blue blood is beyond their reach.

After the meeting, Jin comes across two soldiers assaulting revolutionaries. In a fit of rage and frustration, Jin murders both soldiers, baffling the revolutionaries he saved while showing some discontent with the current structure he serves.

Jin has always seemed to represent the iron fist of Joran’s Tokugawa Shogunate perfectly. Cold, calculating and indifferent in most matters, the Nue head has played a deceptively villainous role throughout the series thus far. It will be interesting to see how the loss of Sawa – someone he supposedly has an emotional attachment to – affects his allegiances, as the cracks in that relationship slowly start to show.