Yashahime is Growing WAY Too Formulaic

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Episode 11 of Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon, "Curse of the Man-Eating Pond" now streaming on Crunchyroll, Funimation, Animelab and Hulu.

Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon is settling into an episodic routine of demon-of-the-week fights. These enjoyable self-contained stories are well-written and satisfying, but they don't really contribute anything of note to the overarching plot. This isn't so different from Inuyasha, which itself took a good chunk of episodes to really get the ball rolling. Still, given this season is said to run just 24 episodes -- Episode 11 is almost the halfway mark -- it's somewhat concerning that the show still isn't really progressing the narrative.

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That being said, this week saw another interesting little story, this time involving a demonic pond, a Biwa and Towa and Setsuna learning to work together. It was a very entertaining episode with a smidgen of character development, but Yashahime really needs to get a move on if it wants to reach a satisfying conclusion in Episode 24.

The main takeaway from "Curse of the Man-Eating Pond" was Towa and Setsuna working together to compensate for each other's shortcomings. As they fight both the Venom Serpent and Drifting Pond, they realize that they are each vulnerable to one of the respective demons attacks -- Towa to the Drifting Pond's Venom, and Setsuna to the Venom Serpent's Poison Mist. In spite of Setsuna's stand-offish nature, they quickly realize that they need to work together and make short work of the demons.

The progress in Towa and Setsuna's relationship is going at a glacial pace, but it's still progress. With the previous episode having seen Setsuna remember their shared childhood, albeit only for a moment, this episode sees them working together efficiently (as opposed to Towa just nuking an enemy single-handedly). It seems the sisters are on track for some sort of reconciliation. That doesn't prevent Setsuna from leaving Towa hanging on a high five, though, in an admittedly very funny moment.

As for Moroha, she's... sidelined again. Moroha is quickly knocked out and lands on a pile of medicinal herbs, which Setsuna uses to defeat the Drifting Pond. Moroha gets some funny moments here, and while serving as comic relief is better than not appearing in the episode at all, it's still a shame to see her left out of the action in this way.

All in all, "Curse of the Man-Eating Pond" was an enjoyable adventure for the Half-Demon Princesses. The story of the family and their lost Biwa-playing father was affecting and watching Setsuna play Violin for the family shows her own continued humanization. But overall, it was still just another self-contained demon battle, and there's still nothing to bring back to Corpse Dealer Jyubei! Time will tell how  Yashahime wraps up this season, or if there are plans for further seasons. For now, though, it would be nice to see a little more progress.

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