When Shiemi tries to make friends with the other two girls in the exorcist cram school, things backfire a little when Izumo Kamiki takes advantage of her and basically turns Shiemi into a personal servant. Not that Shiemi minds, she’s just glad to help out her friend. Rin on the other hand notices how Izumo is treating Shiemi, and he doesn’t like it.
The entire cram school class all get together for a study camp to prepare them for their esquire examinations (yes it’s esquire, not exwire. Don’t trust the anime subs, it’s esquire in the manga, and exwire isn’t actually a word). Shiemi starts to show that she isn’t one hundred percent as happy with current circumstances as she lets on when Izumo won’t let her join Pakku and Izumo in the bath. Rin tries to confront her about what’s going on, but she won’t listen to him.
Pakku tells Izumo that she’s thinking of leaving the cram school, and that she doesn’t like how Izumo has been treating Shiemi. They are then attacked by a ghoul type demon, which injures Pakku. Izumo tries to summon her familiars, but they turn on her because of her troubled mind.
Rin jumps in and fights off the ghoul, while Shiemi uses her familiar to summon some aloe to treat Pakku’s burn. The ghoul overpowers Rin, who is unable to draw his sword while there are witnesses around. He is saved at the last moment by Yukio, who drives the ghoul off.
Yukio takes a look at Pakku, and declares that Shiemi’s quick aid saved her arm. Izumo is left crying because she was unable to save her friend. Rin notices her, and gives her his shirt to wear, since she is still in her underwear. And the episode ends with Rin, standing shirtless in front of his friends, trying to hide his tail.
In a medium filled with flashy, fast paced action series, it’s always refreshing to see episodes that center around realistic, emotionally complex characters. (Not that I can really complain, I like flashy, fast paced action series best). Shiemi is incredibly well written. Her motivation carries over from episode five, where Rin, embarrassed, denied that they were friends. Since she’s never had friends before, she has no way of knowing, as the viewer does, that Rin didn’t mean what he said. This pushes her to trying to make her own friends, instead of relying on Rin and Yukio so much.
At first it seems like she’s completely oblivious to the reality of how Izumo treats her, but it soon becomes obvious that she knows full well that she’s being used, but she hopes that by continuing to be accommodating Izumo will start to see her as a real friend. Superficially she seems like a clueless girl, and while she is naive, she is by no means clueless. Her behavior is spot on for how a real person with her personality would act, and for that I can do no less than applaud Blue Exorcist. When the action is good, it’s great, but it’s the characters that shine the brightest. So far they all have proper motivation for their actions and personalities, and the fact that this remains consistent is easily this series’ strongest selling point.