At the end of Episode Three, Harutora and Touji move to Tokyo in order to be near Natsume, and they are both enrolled into the Onmyo Preparatory School. On Harutora and Touji’s first day, they are told to see the principal, Miyo Kurahashi. Here, they are referred to being Natsume’s Hishamaru and Kakugyouki, and Harutora has no idea what this means. They also learn about the special attention Natsume receives because of the rumor that she is the reincarnation of Yakou Tsuchimikado. Miyo asks each of them what their opinion of Yakou is. After giving their responses, a man named Jin Ohtomo enters. It turns out he’s Harutora and Touji’s homeroom teacher.

As Harutora and Touji walk down the hall with Jin, Harutora asks what the principal meant by them being Natsume’s Hishamaru and Kakugyouki. Jin explains that these were the names of Yakou’s familiars, the ones who were always by his side and protecting him. After they get to the classroom and introduce themselves, a girl named Kyoko points out that it seems strange to have transfer students suddenly enter their class in the middle of a semester. She accuses them of getting special treatment because Harutora is from the Tsuchimikado family. Natsume gets into an argument with Kyoko, and no one bothers to break it up.

Touji later learns from talking to fellow student Tenma Momoe that Kyoko is the granddaughter of the school’s principal and that Kyoko’s father is the head of the Onmyo Agency. Tenma also explains that while Kyoko’s family may have more influence right now, the Tsuchimikado family has had a higher status historically. Because of this, Kyoko seems to view Natsume as her rival. Tenma also points out that Natsume and Kyoko are the only members of the class who have defense familiars.

That night, Harutora takes out the familiar his father gave him as a parting gift. Suddenly, a spirit fox appears in the room. She introduces herself as Kon and that she is charged with the task of protecting Harutora. It turns out she’s been there the whole time, but had made herself invisible. Generally, Kon acts very meek and shy, and her mannerisms reminded me a lot of Hinata Hyuga from Naruto. However, if she draws her sword to protect Harutora, her demeanor changes drastically.

In class the next day, Kyoko gets into an argument with Harutora, and Kon suddenly appears with her sword drawn. While Harutora scolds Kon for going overboard, Kyoko summons her defense familiars. Their homeroom teacher says he’s glad they’re both motivated and enthusiastic, so why don’t they have a battle of the familiars?

The episode ends just as the battle is beginning: it’s Kyoko’s two familiars paired up against Kon and Harutora, who is decked out in a kendo outfit that the teacher has placed a spell on. As Harutora explains, he can participate because he’s also a familiar.

While the story being presented here is really interesting, the episode suffers from the “info dumping” problem that I have complained about in previous episodes of the series. Since Episode Four begins a new story arc, there’s a need for exposition and explanations. Unfortunately, so much time is taken up to get this done that it does bog down the story a little bit. I’m hoping that Episode Five will put the focus back on the action again, especially since the battle of the familiars didn’t start at the end of this episode.

After watching this episode, I’m wondering if Tokyo Ravens will end up being like Sunday Without God, where the series is primarily broken up by several multi-episode arcs instead of one overarching story that covers the entire series. From these four episodes, it appears Tokyo Ravens may end up following this narrative structure, but I won’t know for sure until the series progresses some more.

Even with all of the explanations and exposition that bogged down this episode, I’m still interested enough in the story to keep watching Tokyo Ravens..

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