As anime episodes go, that one was quite the slap in the face.
better than karaage in a ghoul's stomach.
Gourmet, Tsukiyama Shuu. It was pretty obvious from the moment he walked onto the scene last week (before, in fact) that this ghoul was big trouble, both for Kaneki Ken-kun and for the 20th Ward. It's a bit irritating how easily Ken is seduced by Tsukiyama's sweet talk about books and loneliness - especially given that he was snowed exactly the same way by Rize. One might also argue, however, that Yoshimura and Touka should have done a better job making sure he was fully aware of just how dangerous the Gourmet really is. Touka did say so, but she's normally so hostile to begin with and the mention so brief that it's not surprising Ken didn't really register it.
Yomo (Nakamura Yuuichi, with a lot of Grizzly-san in his performance) who takes the most hands-on approach in trying to continue Ken's education, in his own tough-love sort of way. That means teaching him how to fight (he certainly knows how to dodge) and taking him to meet Itori (Takagaki Ayahi) who runs a Ghoul bar called Helter Skelter. This is a nicely atmospheric scene, but it most importantly seems a pretext to introduce the concept of human-ghoul hybrids into the story - a subject which Itori seems quite knowledgeable about even as she dismisses such one-eyed "super-ghouls" as urban myth. They're not, of course - I don't think we have a story otherwise, and it seems a safe bet now more than ever that all of the events on the night Ken's life changed forever were planned.
orgiastically responding to the smell of Ken's blood on a handkerchief (apparently shards of ceramic are able to cut his skin while a knife is not) and generally throwing everything he has at making Tsukiyama a ridiculous yet simultaneously menacing figure. I'm pretty sure no one else could have played the character the way Miyano does, and if it's not subtle it certainly makes one hell of an impact.
twisted ghoul guests like Madam A (Asano Mayumi) and her "scrapper" Taro-chan (Taketora). He may be the most grotesque thing in the episode, a barely literate mass of flesh in leather bondage gear whose job it is to slice up the main course for the ghoul feast. Ken has at this point been drugged (it was in the coffee) but his survival instinct does kick in when his life is on the line.
steps into the pit and slices Taro-chan in half as the menu substitution. However this started in his mind it seems Tsukiyama's mindset now is that he'll feast on Ken alone, this meat being too precious to share with anyone else.
I think in lesser hands an episode like this one could certainly have come off as ridiculous and not much else, but because of the quality of the writing, direction and performance by Miyano this was stylish and grotesque in a good way. This side of the ghoul world is clearly an important part of Tokyo Ghoul's mosaic, but I do hope this kind of ep is the exception rather than the rule because I think the burnout factor would kick in pretty quickly if it becomes the norm. As a change of pace is works a treat though, because the more I see of the strange and exhaustively detailed alternative world this series has created, the more I want to learn about it.