If the seventh volume of Soul Eater see’s a lull in action, Atsushi Ohkubo balances it out with an action heavy second half. Medusa’s fall once again restores the peace to Death City, but at a heavy price. The Kishin was released and its madness has begun spreading across the globe. Lord Death calls together several of his most powerful weapons to deal with the threat. At the same time, life at the DWMA is rife with conflict, as Maka tries to form a bond with Crona and Stein finds himself slipping closer to the edge of insanity.
The latter half of the volume steers away from the personal conflicts enveloping the main cast and instead introduces the new threat of Arachnophobia, a group of devoted to the witch Arachne. The elder sister of Medusa, Arachne was hunted by Lord Death 800 years ago for crafting the first demon weapons. Maka and Crona are the first on the scene to confront her, but like her sister, Arachne proves to be more than a match for the fledgling meisters. To prevent her from fully regaining her power, the DWMA mobilizes a counter attack.
Atsushi Ohkubo is in rare form here, mixing quiet moments with bursts of action to accommodate the story. The character moments sprinkled throughout the volume gives clear motivations to the cast and gives them a level of depth not yet seen in the series. Stein’s struggle with his madness is makes him perhaps the most diverse character among the group.
There is a considerable amount of plot development to be had, particularly in the latter half of the volume, setting the stage for a battle between the DWMA and Arachne’s forces. The arc is moving at a breakneck pace, setting up multiple side plots in which loyalties will be tested and sacrifices made. While the series can be frenzied at times, the seventh volume’s focus on the characters is what makes it one of the strangest additions to the series.