Another highlight of this anthology for me. The absolutely gorgeous, hand drawn animation, combined with an interesting, hard-hitting story spring boards this episode among the best of the lot.
The story is set in an alternate history Hong-Kong and has an interesting take on technology, surrounding strong themes such as oppression. It is largely about a young boy, Liang, who goes hunting with his father, in pursuit of a shape-shifter. As Liang comes face-to-face with the daughter of the shape-shifter, his initial impression of these creatures changes. The story then shifts in time as technology grips the country and Liang finds himself extremely comfortable with this new change. With the help of this newfound love, he tries to protect Yan from society.
Apart from having a strong plot this episode is visually stunning as well. The change in moods, highlights in pathetic fallacies are all brought out with the beautiful colour schemes employed. The open, green fields with blue skies dominate the first half of the episode until it then transitions to a darker, more grey, mechanical setting.
In terms of content, this episode definitely shines out, showing how emotions and situations ay change. The shape shifters are a symbol to all those outcasts in society, who believe that they have to survive this harsh world on their own. But this short begs to differ. Yes, they will have to be strong and stand up for themselves but this story gives them hope that there will always be someone who will stand with them against any form of difficulty or oppression that thety may be experiencing. This symbolic piece addresses so many important issues in society, including the misuse of women, exclusion and discrimination to name a few. But it also provides hope that there is a solution to it all.
It is definitely one of the most symbolic episodes in the anthology, carrying an essential message, said through the legend of the ‘ninetails.’ Though there may be excessive nudity again, the episode definitely shines through. Thematically very effective, and visually stunning, it caps another beautiful episode in the anthology.
Aryamaan’s Rating – 88/100