Fire Force (Episode 19) – Into the Nether

Fire Force Title

Victor Licht has determined that the Knights of the Ashen Flame are based in the Nether, the abandoned subway beneath old Tokyo. Company 8 will have to overcome their fears of the Nether to pursue the Evangelist!

What did you watch?

It looks like we’re speeding towards the end game of Fire Force with Episode 19. Now that we know where the Knights of the Ashen Flame are hiding, it’s just a matter of going into the Nether and getting them… If this is anything like the other shounen series, we can expect a series of battles, increasing in nature until we get to the big Sho down… As always, I have Yomu from Umai Yomu Anime Blog with me to discuss this episode. There will also be spoilers and lots of speculation… we love to speculate!

Fire Force Episode 19 The Entrance to the Nether

What happened?

They’ve tracked the Knights of the Ashen Flame to the Nether, the abandoned subway beneath old Tokyo that is surrounded by myths and legends. The Sol Church has given Special Company 8 permission to enter the Nether and find the Evangelist. They leave in the morning, so it’s a chance to get some sleep. However, as Shinra tries to relax, he experiences an unusual dream where he sees Iris. An Adola link seems to suggest that it was more than just that!

The next morning, the whole of Company 8 head out of Tokyo and stop before the entrance to the Nether. It seems to have gotten everyone’s backs up as the Sol Religion has demonised the location and stories of mysterious creatures have emerged. Nevertheless, they head inside and are instantly attacked by the Ashen Knights, who use smoke and illusions to separate them.

Maki finds herself alone and facing off against a group of Ashen Knights, led by Flail, the one with the flaming mace. She’s massively outnumbered, but that’s not going to stop Maki, especially with Vulcan’s equipment. What follows is possibly the most brutal and epic battle in the series. Maki is a total badass and does not give a shred of leniency. If you’re fighting her, you had better go all out!

Later we see, Iris with two Tamaki’s! She’s unsure which is the real one, despite one sounding like an old man… However, when the real Tamaki’s Lucky Lecher activates, she knows she has the right one. The other runs off, but they are soon attacked by Assault, an Ashen Knight that produces fire bullets. He attacks Tamaki and appears to be winning, but Tamaki gets close enough to counter. Unfortunately, her Lucky Lecher activates and she accidentally exposes herself to Assault. This, however, catches him off guard and he’s unable to concentrate. Iris sees the opening and beats him with a metal pipe. It’s yet another brutal fight!

Fire Force Episode 19 Maki with Vulcan's Weapons

I get to go first this week and I’m excited. This episode had some awesome moments in it and I can’t wait to talk about them. I can’t speak for Yomu, however, who will be in bold as normal, so he can do his own talking.

What did you think?

This was a big step in the right direction for me. I loved that we’re finally seeing the world outside of the protected area of Tokyo and it looks like an apocalyptic wasteland. I was expecting a little more fire and ash though.

It was a mixed episode, especially seeing how terrified they all were of the Nether. Seemed odd for them all to be so superstitious with the exception of Vulcan. Then, we got some action and what is currently my favourite moment in the entire series, but we’ll get to that shortly.

Hey, Yomu. Thanks for stopping by once more to share your thoughts on the latest episode of Fire Force. How was it for you?

Hey, Lynn. This episode pretty much confirmed what we had suspected – straight for a confrontation with Sho. I thought it was pretty clever for them to label the old subway tunnels as the “Nether”, but I also think you’re probably right that their fear of it seems a bit odd. Aside from the Evangelist, there shouldn’t be anything there, so it seems like a weird place for their religion to label as some evil spot.

Still, I liked the pacing and feel of this episode. Even if we’re running towards the conclusion, I thought the episode felt good overall.

Fire Force Episode 19 Maki Destroys Ashen Knights

What was your favourite moment?

It was crazy that they all got split up so easily and I can’t help but wonder what the religion is trying to hide with its views. Anyhow, it also meant that we got to see Maki in an epic battle. She is incredible and terrifying all at the same time.

Her fight with the flaming mace knight and a bunch of random Ashen Knights is my top moment in the series so far. Maki was brutal. She didn’t hold back and the use of the hammers that Vulcan made for her just made her that much more deadly. She head-butted one guy and then slammed one of the hammers into him seconds later. Overkill? Possibly, but so cool.

Then, she took on the flaming mace guy and completely obliterated him with repeated triple attacks. Those hammers are insane!

Agreed, the Maki fight was the highlight of the episode. She’s proven over and over that when hand-to-hand combat is involved, she’s the best. Loved finally seeing Maki take care of business, and her new weapons are awesome. This series needed more of her, it’s nice that we at least got some now.

Fire Force Episode 19 Maki Destroys Flail

What was your least favourite moment?

I’m sure the Tamaki incidents will get slammed, but I thought it was awesome to see her special ability work for her, and not just once.

I’m still not quite sure what was going on with everyone being so terrified of going into the Nether. It seems like someone has gone a long way toward making sure no one goes there and I feel like there’s going to be a connection to Iris and the Adola link that Shinra experienced. Even more questions!

Yep, I agree again. I think that Tamaki’s “fight” was fun in its own way. I actually have a hard time coming up with anything, so I’ll go with…

Victor wearing the fire suit. It doesn’t suit him one bit. Thankfully he was wearing his lab clothes underneath.

Fire Force Episode 19 Maki's Ready for a Fight

Who was your favourite character?

This seems like a no brainer, but it was Maki and as you said, this series has needed more Maki from the beginning. With her strength and experience, she must be stronger than Shinra, especially with her second-generation pyrokinesis ability. I would have preferred it if Maki was the protagonist.

Maki for me as well. Unfortunately, I doubt she’s stronger than Shinra because that afternoon training session probably was meant to put him on even terms with Sho. But Maki was awesome this episode and has been an excellent character from the beginning.

Fire Force Episode 19 Maki triple hit attack on Flail

Who was your least favourite character?

I’m going with Obi because of his reaction to the Nether. Of all the people in Fire Force 8, I really didn’t think he would be the type to believe the fairy tales and superstitions involving the Nether. I can’t seem to work his character out.

I guess I’ll choose Victor, for wearing a fire suit. Honestly, I thought all of the characters were good this episode, Iris included who I usually go with haha.

Fire Force Episode 19 Obi

Would you like some more?

Things are just getting going and I can’t wait to see how the rest of the team are getting on against the Knights of the Ashen Flame. It was funny to see the supposed toughest Ashen Knight getting pummeled by Tamaki and Iris after her Lucky Lecher managed to nullify his offence.

I still think the archer will switch sides at some point too. Saying that, wouldn’t it be funny to find that the Evangelist is actually the good guy… I doubt it but it’s a possibility!

I think it’d be a possibility if they weren’t turning innocent people into infernals…

But it’s pretty cool to see how their hideout is the old subway tunnels. I also thought it was smart and creative the way they split up the team, felt believable considering all the illusions and smoke. I don’t think we saw Shinra or Arthur at all once they were split up, did we?

I don’t think so. Maybe we’ll finally find out what Arthur was doing that time he disappeared. Could Arthur be the Evangelist?

There’s definitely still a lot we don’t know and that’s the thing that keeps me coming back. That and the visuals that are usually pretty special. Even, going back to Maki’s fight, it was epic on every level and I really want to see more of that.

Haha, now THAT would be amazing. His whole “knight” obsession does align with the Knights of the Ashen Flame…

Honestly, I’m a little bit disappointed if only because we probably won’t see as much Maki or Tamaki going forward now that they’ve “done their part”. Usually, shounen anime give everyone an enemy to take down separately like this. But as you say, there are still many things we don’t yet know.

Fire Force Episode 19 Iris and Two Tamakis

Yeah, that’s true. We’ll probably get Hinawa and Obi fighting next week and that’s great, but it would be nice if Maki caught up with one of them and joined in.

I wonder if we can expect Joker to show up at some point. That would be a nice surprise too.

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Maybe going towards a grand conclusion was the right idea after all. It all depends on if they keep this momentum going!

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Yeah. We have got five episodes left and I could easily see a shounen fill that time with battles, especially considering the final showdown is bound to take a couple of episodes.

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Let’s just find out what the deal is with Arthur already!

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Agreed. There’s definitely something going on there. He can’t just be a complete idiot.

Fire Force Episode 19 Iris takes out the Distracted Assault

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What did you think?