With the help of a wayward lawyer named Nagira, Robin begins to piece together the motives behind Solomon’s attack on the STN-J. While the search leads them to some startling truths in the end it raises more questions than answers. Meanwhile the members of the STN-J are slowly beginning to regain some measure of normality; their loyalties are put to the test, however, when they learn of Solomon’s plans to exterminate Robin!
The penultimate volume in the Witch Hunter Robin saga continues the series in fine style, offering fans more of the paranormal sleuthing and pop-Gothicism they’ve come to know and love. Content wise, the series hasn’t really progressed beyond the “learn about Witch, find Witch, and take down Witch’ formula established in volume one, but as usual the quality of the writing, production and direction prevail. In some ways it’s more akin to occult-bothering stateside smashes Millennium and The X-Files than your standard anime fare with its an emphasis on tightly written, inter locking standalone stories. This is both a blessing and a curse; the lack of variety can make prolonged viewing sessions a bit trying on the old attention span, but like spiritual predecessor Cowboy Bebop, it’s the perfect way to wile away a quick half hour or two.
Aside from the little quibble outlined above Witch Hunter Robin remains as compelling a slice of the paranormal as ever. Solomon’s actions toward the end of the last volume weigh heavily on proceedings and with Amon still in limbo the members of the STN-J find themselves at a loose end. Naturally, they turn to ex-compatriot Robin for help, but our heroine has troubles of her own, namely in the form of Sastre, (imagine Codename V from V For Vendetta only with a less porcelain pallor) a hunter sent by Solomon to put her out of action once and for all. The true thrust behind the overarching plot remains elusive a beast as ever, but the story’s finally gathering speed and the many twists and turns are sure to keep viewers guessing right up until the final volume is released.
While this volume of Witch Hunter Robin falters a little in its execution, the combination of intelligent pacing, writing and direction ensure it is never any thing less than entertaining. It’s the perfect antidote to the jiggling girls, stroppy teenagers and giant robots currently polluting the release schedules and sure to put a smile on the face of those with more demanding tastes.