In Made in Abyss episode 9, “The Great Fault,” Riko and Regu begin their descent and discover that even cute little furry animals can’t be trusted in the Abyss. They also learn that ancient ships embedded in walls are perfect spots for huge creatures — with matching appetites — to make a lair. Finally, Riko learns that there’s one creature that she just can’t stomach.
Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious!
What’s In This Post
3 Favorite Moments
- 9:15: After blowing off the madokajack’s head, we know that Regu’s going to be unconscious for about two hours to recharge. We’re still on edge after the madokajack’s attack, and what shows up? A crimson splitjaw. Not just any crimson splitjaw; the same one that attacked back in episode 1! It seemed angry, too. The camera shots from Regu’s perspective as he was about to faint (9:50), even as Riko tried to push the neritantans out of their way, drove home in a visceral way just how much danger they were in.
- 12:19: The amakagame is a terrifying creature perfectly adapted to living in the dark tunnels around the Great Fault, isn’t it? A huge mouth and an even larger stomach — simple, effective, but vulnerable to Riko’s knife (thankfully for our heroes)! The “Should be Terrifying but is Cute Instead” award of the week goes to the neritantans for their battle cry prior to attacking Riko. They mistook her for their favorite fruit because she was covered in the amakagame’s stomach juices. The neritantans are small, but if they’re anything like a mink or ermine in our world, their teeth are sharp and in the numbers that were attacking Riko, so she’d be in serious danger. Just another day in the Abyss, huh?
- 15:19: Riko thought by emerging into another vertical shaft that she’d reached safety. Then she saw the steep incline to the next exit — an incline that went up. She knows what the curse will do to her, but with the neritantan horde closing in, she courageously plunged upwards. I loved how she used her intellect to anticipate and fight the effects of the curse, like when she dismissed the specters of Marulk and Ouzen as hallucinations. She was even able to ignore false images of her friends and mentors. Did you notice, though, which hallucination tripped her up? Her mother Lyza (17:02). That is, until she realized that Regu wasn’t with her in the illusion.
I’m trying out a new format for my reviews. Instead of listing everything I liked about the episode, I’m forcing myself to limit it to three things. It’s arbitrary, but I hope the new format will keep the reviews shorter and more enjoyable for you to read! It might help me be more creative, too (limits can do that, you know!).
Two things stood out for me in this episode. First, the realism of the eco-system once again asserted itself. Madokajacks need large lairs, and when grounded, they use their wing-knuckles to run. The little neritantans that are flat so they can stay out of the way of bigger creatures, and because their diet consists of fruits, their meat’s tender. The amakagame use scent to draw in the neritantans, which makes perfect sense in a dark and closed environment. Riko even hurled neritantans into the Fault to distract the larger creatures with food so she and Regu could make it to another cave. All this combines to make the world feel immersive and interesting.
The second thing was the huge development in Riko’s character. She now realizes that on her own, she would never make it. I think she intellectually understood this before (like during their survival training), but the knowledge hadn’t sunk into her bones, so to speak. It seemed like events in this episode forced her to internalize that knowledge, like when she said (14:54), “Has it not been two hours yet? Reg, come on and wake up already!” Then, after she saw through the illusionary trip back to Orth with Lyza, Riko collapsed on the ground, her strength finally at its end. She explicitly says to Regu (19:14), “Now I see how hard it is being on your own inside the Abyss… I was being protected by you all along…”
And in case we didn’t get the point, Riko sums it up by saying being on her own would have been impossible (20:45).
As if to put an exclamation point on this idea, Riko even tosses her mother’s weapon, Blaze Reap, to Regu so he can finish off the crimson splitjaw. Riko knew that even though the weapon had been her mother’s, Regu would be more adept at using it.
And oh boy, wasn’t she right? Regu dealt the beast a lethal blow. Even after striking the crimson splitjaw, the everlasting gunpowder kept exploding as the beast fell into the Fault. Cool stuff!
What were your favorite moments in this episode? Do you think Riko will become a little more cautious now that she understands herself a little better? Or do you think she’ll keep plunging away? Let me know in the comments!
Other Posts of Interest
- Made in Abyss Episode 1: The City of the Great Pit
- Made in Abyss Episode 2: Resurrection Festival
- Made in Abyss Episode 3: Departure
- Made in Abyss Episode 4: The Edge of the Abyss
- Made in Abyss Episode 5: Incinerator
- Made in Abyss Episode 6: Seeker Camp
- Made in Abyss Episode 7: The Unmovable Sovereign
- Made in Abyss Episode 8: Survival Training
- Made in Abyss Episode 10: Poison and the Curse
- Made in Abyss Episode 11: Nanachi