Black Butler, Vol. 8
written by Yana Toboso
He is simply one hell of a butler.
Sebastian has proved that time and time again, and this volume is no different. But first, we are drawn away from Ciel and Sebastian’s excursion to observe the events at the Phantomhive Manor, as Finnian, Mey-Rin, and Bardroy fend off the attacks of the members of the Noah’s Ark circus.
Ciel’s servants are entirely devoted to protecting their master’s home, and his fiancée, Lady Elizabeth, from harm. Unfortunately, however, they may be unable to prevent serious damage to the mansion from their own “methods” of enemy repulsion. Tanaka, he’s fine the way he is, as always. He is easily the subtlest of the four when it comes to…subduing intruders.
Elsewhere, Ciel and Sebastian confront the man behind the plot to kidnap children, and his purpose for doing so: harvesting their bones to create “real” artificial limbs. Traumatized by the depravity of it all and reminded of his own past traumas, Ciel commands Sebastian to “kill them all,” which, of course, he does without hesitation. But that is not the end of it…oh, no. Ciel’s next step is to visit the workhouse the children grew up in and introduce a new benefactor, but what will he find when he actually gets there?
The volume ends with a Phantomhive holiday escapade that cannot help but conclude the book in a very lighthearted way—a breath of fresh air in the face of the usual heavyhearted feel of the book.
Yana Toboso executes this series as excellently as ever. The heavyhearted psychology of Ciel Phantomhive is well-portrayed, and when combined with the comedic mishaps that always seem to befall his three servants, and the general awesomeness of his never-failing black-clad butler, Sebastian, it makes for a well-balanced formula for a manga series.