Home > Episode by Episode > Tokyo Ghoul ep4: a Mind Full of Lust and Wonder

Tokyo Ghoul ep4: a Mind Full of Lust and Wonder


I can’t imagine anything much worse than being amongst a group of people in a land unfamiliar while you’re on your own. Sure, you can worry about things like horrible ways to die, the presence of God or whether your karma is going to add up to you getting kidnapped and sold into sex slavery or something. But when it comes to normal, everyday, sane worries; it all comes down to who you can trust. Everything beyond that cliff can be a slippery slope or a pleasant meadow, but you won’t know the route until you know the place you’re in and the people you call your associates and friends. For someone like Ken Kaneki, it’s especially important because, he can never tell if he’s part of the pack, or the prey being hunted. Most people aren’t lucky enough to not only be told someone is a jackal when meeting one, but to get the chance to walk away, as well. Maybe God really does protect fools, or perhaps that sentiment only applies to humans, not animals.

In a way, I can’t fault Ken too much.  As far as he’s concerned, he’s at the top of the food chain.  Aside from the “box inspectors” that roam the streets, he doesn’t have too much to worry about as long as he doesn’t meddle with another ghoul’s feeding grounds.  Well, that would be the case if the ghouls were simply trying to survive while in hiding in Tokyo.  In truth, Tokyo is such a huge city that not only factions are popping up, but whole societies – high societies!  And that’s where the nuance in this episode and the Gourmet come into the scenery.

The moment the Gourmet (I can’t remember his real name) came on the scene, the other patrons, especially Touka, were weary of his presence.  I suppose calling the Gourmet a parasite wasn’t enough for Ken to get the hint though.  The moment Ken’s scent caught his attention, it became a persistent and sly mission of the Gourmet’s to ensnare Ken.  At the time, I had no idea why.  The M.O. that I had started to gather from word on him was that he was a man of discerning taste, I couldn’t imagine cannibalism to be his kind of thing.  But I suppose that doesn’t matter if he thinks there’s an interesting flavor to be had.  The lies piled up constantly, little white lies and misnomers to pull Ken into his web.  And by the time Ken was…

*sigh*

Just a moment as I point out just how god-awful creepy this scene is with Ken showering at another man’s house.  I’m not pulling any punches, if he were a female, I would call him a brain dead bimbo that was inviting the worst, whether ignorantly or not.  And you know what?  Ken is a brain dead bimbo who is inviting the worst, whether he does so ignorantly or not.  I was begging someone to kick him in the neck when he did that.

Regardless, the Gourmet is able to easily and slyly serve Ken up on a silver platter.  I was amazed to see the coliseum/opera house-like set up for slaughtering humans who were deemed “fine meat”.  They even had special butchers for the occassion.  This time the festivities being handled by a girth-full and powerful man named, Taro.  Ken by all rights should already be slaughtered.  If not for his eye showing itself to everyone just before death, the Gourmet would have not stepped in to save him.  Instead, it was Taro on the menu (so I assume the giant butcher was human), and not Ken.

The importance of the one ghoul eye hinted at with a “rumour” talked about by a woman named Itori who runs a ghoul bar in the ward.  She happens to be friends both with the mask maker, Uta and the mysterious, near-silent man who gathers human remains, Yomo.  While she does pick on Ken quite a bit, she also does him the favor of telling him the rumour about the ghoul born with one-eye.  Amazingly, it’s a ghoul conceived by coitus with a ghoul and a human.  This begs a basket of new questions about the world of ghouls, their anatomy and their place in the world.  But first, the one-eyed ghoul legend itself needs to be discussed.

Allegedly, the child is a rare and unlikely spawn of a ghoul and human.  There’s no word on whether it matters if the mother is ghoul or human, but we do know that it doesn’t happen a lot because normally it isn’t physically feasible very often, also you have to take into account a human and ghoul possibly falling in love, or even agreeing to have sex.  I’m not even going to bring up rape in this situation, because I can’t imagine a human doing that to a ghoul, nor can I imagine a ghoul doing that to a human and not eating them while they’re wild with lust.  If the child is born, they are said to be more powerful than a normal pure ghoul.  That’s the end of the rumour, though it sounds more like a myth than a rumour.

Back to the consequences of ghouls and humans copulating; this is one of those things that pushes me hard to think about and speculate on the lore of this story and world.  given that this is based on a manga, I’m careful to not get my hopes up too high.  The origins of ghouls could be magical/mystical, scientific or they could just be aliens.  I don’t put anything past the medium.  But if the show mentions this, I’m sure there’s at least one person walking around like Ken.  I can’t imagine the story bringing it up and not ever addressing it again.  I don’t doubt this has happened in the past.  And I’m pretty sure this kind of character is a sort of end game for this story, too.  Ken seems to be a link between ghouls and humans, and he will have significance revolving around that heavily.

Overall, an enjoyable episode that did more to bring up new questions than address lingering ones.  I’m OK with this, the wandering of a mind in wonder is a beautiful thing, and a drug for daydreamers.  Give me more mysteries, my mind thrives on this speculation.

Note: this episode was really focused on food.  I can’t believe I didn’t talk more about that.  Especially the scene where we get a glimpse into Touka’s school life.  It’s amazing how easily everyday things can trip you up in an ordinary school setting when you don’t eat human food.  I’m sure Touka wants to make friends and live a somewhat normal school girl life.  I can’t at the moment imagine another reason for her putting up with this trauma and danger, day after day.  Hopefully, we’ll get to experience a lot more of her life soon.

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  1. July 26, 2014 at 22:58

    Wait – you mean you don’t shower at strange mens houses? 0_0

    Okay, on a more serious note, I think I might be dropping this series pretty soon. I quite like the visuals at times, but Ken is really starting to annoy me, and I prefer my horror to be more on the suspenseful and mysterious side as opposed to obvious and campy. That said, I didn’t mind this particular episode. It was fun, albeit predictably so.

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