Noragami: Episode 2 – “Snow-like”

Noragami is about a minor god named Yato, who doesn’t have a single shrine. One day, he spray paints on a wall that he will help people in exchange for a 5-yen offering; he’s trying to save up money in order to build his own shrine. One day, while he’s doing a job, a girl named Hiyori pushes him out of the way of a bus. She is hit by the bus, and now Hiyori is a living Phantom. She’s still alive, but her spirit has a tendency to separate itself from her body at unexpected times.

At the beginning of the episode, Hiyori realizes it’s been two weeks since she made a contract with Yato to be fixed and returned to normal. She calls him and gives him an earful, and he explains that some unexpected stuff happened and that he has to deal with that first.

Later, he appears and talks to Hiyori face-to-face. This portion of the episode contains a lot of exposition and not much action takes place; however, the exposition is needed at this point in order for the rest of the episode to make sense. Yato ultimately has to explain that he needs a Regalia, a spirit that serves as a weapon for a god, in order to help Hiyori with her problem. At this point, I was a little confused; in episode one, this was referred to as a Sacred Treasure. I don’t know if this change in terminology is in the original Japanese series, or if the term ended up being translated differently between the two episodes.

Hiyori decides to take it upon herself to find a new Regalia for Yato. When she thinks she’s found one, she calls him to have him take a look. Unfortunately, what she has found is just a regular Phantom, and it begins chasing them. Near the end of the episode, Yato sees an uncorrupted spirit nearby, and takes the opportunity to make this his new Regalia.

The first half of the episode focuses very heavily on exposition, and the action takes place more in the second half. Even within the action of the second half, there’s still some important exposition that takes place. Probably one of the most important revelations in the second half is about the tail that Hiyori’s spirit has; while it may look like a tail, it’s actually a lifeline that connects Hiyori’s physical and ethereal forms. If that lifeline is cut, Hiyori will die. This now adds a new dimension to the series; Hiyori now has to be careful and make sure nothing happens to that tail if she wants to be able to return to her physical body.

And now that Yato has his new Regalia, the addition of this element could potentially add some interesting interactions to the character mix. From what I saw near the end of the episode, it appears that the relationship between Yato and his new Regalia may be a little rough. So another potential issue is that Yato may have to try hard not to get on the Regalia’s bad side in order to keep him around. Since his former Regalia quit at the beginning of episode one, Yato really can’t afford to lost yet another one.

Even with the heavy emphasis on exposition in this episode, I’m still interested in continuing on with Noragami to find out how the story will continue.

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