Tower of God – Episode 8: Khun’s Strategy

I continue to not really understand this game nor the true stakes of it. But a long as I switch my brain off and just ride along with the flow, it’s fun seeing the characters do their thing and start to get some small amount of insight into these new roles they all hold. I get the impression, had I not imposed myself to write about every episode on an individual basis, I’d probably be enjoying Tower of God a lot more.

The hot headed examiner, named Quant, is already losing his cool at being ambushed by Anak thanks to Khun and Shibisu’s strategy. Despite it being explained very clearly in the previous episode, once again I find that I have utterly misunderstood the premise of another one of these tests.

Apparently, this game of “tag” wasn’t taking place simultaneously, rather, they were taking it in turns. And first is Khun’s Team A. After the ambush fails, Quant gives the team a (nearly) two minute head start, allowing Anak to get tantalisingly close to the exit, and for team leader Khun to come up with a new strategy to take down the physically dominant Ranker.

Tower of God - Episode 8: Khun's Strategy

Because, while having his Shinsu limited during the exam, Quant is obviously a lot stronger and faster than everyone else there, so some strategy and trickery is the only thing they can do to outdo him. When listening to the other examiners watching the test from outside, it becomes apparent that a lot of the people already participating in this test have already as good as passed their class exams. Thus there is little reason for them to really invest themselves in this particular test.

While some of the others are going to be relying on it to pass thanks to their failures at their individual exams. With his self imposed two minutes up, Quant proceeds to blaze through the regulars there to buy time for Anak as if they weren’t even there. With that minor inconvenience out of the way, Khun waits for him atop the bridge. It seems like Quant is not a dumb as he looks, guessing Khun’s strategy of having Anak stand and wait on his lighthouse under the bridge, grabbing Khun and throwing them both into the void below. For what, purpose, I couldn’t tell you.

But surprise, Khun was apparently waiting for this precisely this very unhinged, and difficult to predict action. He brushes free of Quant and allows Anak to grab hold of him using the Green April, allowing the Ranker to fall out of reach below. It seems like everything is in the bag for Team A to win thanks to Khun’s almost clairvoyant plan making skills. But the twists just keep coming, as Quant is somehow waiting by the exit, taking the badge from Anak with ease and ending the test.

Tower of God - Episode 8: Khun's Strategy
This guy… Honestly I really like a lot of the supporting cast.

In the aftermath Khun is giving himself a real hard time over his strategies not working out. But the rest of the team all dog-pile on to reassure him and tell him how great and his tactics were. It’s sweet, considering Khun’s pre-established trust issues. Or it would have been, if this had not all been one big long con. Surprise!

When Quant first falls falls, we’re led to believe that Lauroe is the one who betrayed the team and got him back up top, but nope. It was Khun, ever the conman. And this is where the show turns my brain into scrambled eggs.

The head examiner says that Khun didn’t in fact, betray his team, because his team was the 10 people that were written on the Friend list that Shibisu and Hanz were waving around previously. So Khun had a secret assignment apparently, to get everyone on the list of 10 to pass, doing this by having the people who were guaranteed to pass on his team and force them to lose, all while making it look a believable as possible.

Tower of God - Episode 8: Khun's Strategy

So wait, was this test exclusive to Khun? Or was it the exam of all the Light Bearers? And whose friend list was that? It’s the one from the Scout exam, but it doesn’t seem to belong to a lone person as there are just the ten names of the characters we’ve gotten to know a little better these last few episodes. It’s just one more of those things in this show that doesn’t make a lick of sense if you think about it for more than a minute.

I just need to stop doing that.

Thus the teams swap and we’re now following Bam and Endorsi’s team and the later enacts her plan to outpace their pursuer, whoever that is. Before the episode ends, we get a little peek into Rinnen’s backstory. That she was a thief, seeing all her friends killed in front of her by a Ranker on the ship she was stealing from.

Tower of God - Episode 8: Khun's Strategy
Is this friendship? Because I’m getting very mixed messages from half the people involved.

She only survived by the grace of the rabbit god from the first episode, as he plucked her out and put her on the challenge of climbing the tower. Now she’s having second thoughts though, as she doesn’t want to have to kill these people she’s come to like. Hoh, who is also there, flatly tells her that that’s the nature of the game. And she’s better suck it up. Although Hoh has his own demons he’s struggling to deal with too.

The episode ends with Endorsi, having taken the role of the leader of Team B and splitting everyone up in different directions, kicking one of her own team in the face and exclaiming that her “plan worked”. Although at this point, after the layers and layers of twists going on, this final twist falls totally flat for me. What with the utter lack of context and the well established lack of trustworthiness Endorsi has radiated since she first showed up.

I really can’t switch my brain off when watching this show. The downside of having to write about it episode to episode. As much as I like the characters and the action, it continues to baffle me with its seemingly random plot points and its intentionally obfuscated facts about what the hell the rules of this world and their tests even are, all the sake of a plot twists that feel half earned when you can only see a couple of pieces on the board.

5 thoughts on “Tower of God – Episode 8: Khun’s Strategy

  1. I think you misunderstood something about Yu han Sungs remark here:

    There was no secret etst only for Khun or anything. It’s just Khuns usual tendency to “Screw the rules of the test I make my own rules” that Hansung is reffering to here.

    Khun chose to try and make certain people advance while not giving a shit about the assignements by the administrators. Which hansung deducted and pointed out to lero, basically saying “Hey, his _true_ team is this one, not the one we assigned him”.

    There never was a secret test or anything about it.

    Hope I could help clarify that.

    I do agree though that the anime has a lot of problems in properly explanining stuff. They adapt the webtoon at a very fats rate, hitting just the plot points while really missing a lot of the more complicated nuances, worldbuilding and details. On the othe rhand, I kinda udnerstand why they do it, because the webtoon has veritable walls of dialogue and text explaining this stuff.

    Hope this helps out a bit.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It does help, thanks. And that makes a lot of sense.

      I think it was Hansung’s very nonchalant attitude towards Khun’s behaviour that me off. Had he been mildly annoyed/impressed/intrigued I feel I would have gotten it being outside of the rules a little clearer

      I am feeling pretty dumb about the face that I am continually misunderstanding what’s going on episode to episode. I feel like this would have benefitted a lot from being a 20-something episode series rather than just a 12/13. If only for my slow brain.

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  2. Ok let me explain few things that will help you grasp what is going on.

    1. Rules for passing test :
    * it will be solely decided by total point an individual have after tag game (by total points means points thay got during their individual position training + points got from tag game) and not by the result of tag game (but of course tag will play major role)
    *only certain fixed no. Of individuals will pass from each position. For example among all light bearers only 2 will pass, among all wave controllers only 2 will pass,among all spear bearer only 4 will pass (among which two are already passed (rak and other giant guy) due to special challenge given to them during their position training of hitting target. So they passed irrespective of their points as they passed that challenge)
    *now I will explain why some people are guaranteed to pass no matters if their team fails in tag. People like laure, shibisu performed superbly in their respective position training and previous tests so they are top points holder in their respective position training (enough that even if they are the only persons who fails tag test and other persons in their respective position all passes tag game, will not be able to outscore laure ,khun and shibisu in their respective position training)
    * note that so indirectly every person is competing only with other person in same position. For a person performance of other position persons has no value.
    * now I will explain bam’s situation in all these and how hoh is also affected by it.
    As I mentioned above only 2 wave controller will pass the test based on final points and laure being maximum point holder has already guaranteed to pass so logically only one spot is vacant for wave controller and all wave controller so are competing indirectly for that spot. Baam is not in top 2 point holder among wave controller and grey (short girl) in team A has got more points than bam so if team A wins than even if team B(bam’s team) win bam will not be able to outscore grey (wand staff girl is also there in team A) hence it is sure that if team A passes bam will fails .
    Note that Hoh is also a wave controller, so he is also competing for that one spot of wave controller.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s all great information, and it helps me more fully understand what’s going on and the stakes of the current game.

      But I’ll still contest that the show, as much as I’m enjoying it, is doing a very poor job of conveying all of this information to its audience. Had I known the stakes of the current tag game that you’ve so graciously taken the time to explain to me, then maybe I’d be even more invested in what’s going on.

      The fact that there is all this risk of failure and the potential for a lot of characters to drop out at this stage is something that should have been made much clearer from a storytelling perspective in my opinion. If anything it kind of frustrates me more knowing this is all here and the show isn’t making the most of it.

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      1. Actually they go with 13 episodes to cover for 80 chapters of webtoon. They did good upto episodes 5 . But after it they keep on skipping important info (it was inevitable if they want to cover all season 1 in 13 eps). They also kind of ignore power system here. I recommend that you read it’s webtoon up to current episodes for better understanding of things. There were some interesting info which anime dumped. If u have any other confusion, do tell . Also animation didn’t do justice to action in last episodes ( it could have been many times better ) . I hope that if season 2 come out then they atleast pick anime studio which is familiar with action anime ( as I don’t see current one having any past experience for shonen)

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