So, in case it wasn’t clear, sorcerers are some seriously strong folk. Like, tear-down-forests strong. Also, the voracity with which they use said strength is turned up to eleven when traumatic backstories come to the surface—even if they’re not their own stories. Admittedly, this is a touch weird, but let’s call Broom Girl’s defence of Mai “character development by omission”. Sure, we still know nothing intensely personal about the flying lass, but her vehement respect for Mai shows an intense loyalty—for better or worse. Broom Girl also expressed a belief that female sorcerers are worse off than their male counterparts, as they are also required to maintain appearance in addition to strength. Kugisaki soundly doesn’t give a crap about this opinion, but I can’t say I doubt its truth. The (literally) old guard maintaining the world of sorcery are traditional to the core, which is code for saying offensively exclusionary…which is code for sexist, probably racist, and narrow-mindedly violent. So, if them wanting to kill Itadori wasn’t enough, there are some more reasons to want Gojou’s coup to succeed.
If second-hand exploration into Mai’s past wasn’t enough for you, the latter half of the episode is devoted to the troubled upbringing of both her and her sister, Maki. Remember what I said about the old guard and their ways? Yeah, Maki and Mai’s family do be like that. Worse even. Not only does the Zenin family disregard females, they completely reject children who do not happen to inherit the sorcery technique of their bloodline. Simply put: they suck and I hate them. Still, it was interesting for this episode (through Kugisaki) to note that Mai’s trauma is not a free pass to treat people like trash. Sure, her childhood sucked, but it seems like every sorcerer’s did; that probably has something to do with why teenagers risk their lives to fight curses. That isn’t a normal thing. Regardless, this episode does give us some insight on—and perhaps understanding of—Mai, and that’s nice. She’s still kinda mean, though. Although, she can apparently create matter from her cursed energy. And that’s cool as heck.
P.S. Apparently Maki’s lack of cursed energy is due to a birth pact—like what Mechamaru has—that traded it away for raw strength. Sounds a little familiar, doesn’t it? You know, minus the whole possessed-by-an-unstoppable-curse-who-dreams-of-unbridled-destruction thing.
P.P.S. The animation in this episode was dope as heck.
P.P.P.S. Maki caught a bullet with her bare hands. What? How awesome is that?