If it's crap ... We'll tell you
As stated before in my review of the series as a whole, it was quite a challenge to get through because of its idiotic supporting cast and
horrific pacing. However, there were some truly great moments spread
throughout the show’s run that I would like to touch upon in this new
top 10 list of mine. This is a personal request from one of my many
readers and I hate to disappoint. So without further ado, here are the
top 10 best moments in Kuroshitsuji, otherwise translated into Black Butler.
10. The Undertaker Rewriting The Story (Episode 18: His Butler, Transfers)
One of the more enjoyable characters of the series is simply known as The Undertaker, who occasionally appears as a highly eccentric
informant for Ciel Phantomhive. His appearances are quite humorous,
especially when regarding his services which always require a payment
of a good joke (which very few people are able to accomplish). He is
quirky, over-the-top, and fun to be around.
His greatest moment comes in the latter half of the series, in which Ciel and Sebastian first do battle with the sadistic angel Angela, who
seeks to “purify” a convent through their painful deaths. Having no way
to get there in time, all seems hopeless until the story provides us
with a deus ex machina in the form of The Undertaker, who is revealed
to be one of the greatest Grim Reapers in history. Grabbing one of the
Cinematic Record books used by the Reapers, the Undertaker wickedly
begins to alter the story, writing Sebastian and the others into it to
combat Angela. Sure enough, whatever he writes becomes reality and
Sebastian’s group quickly dispatch of Angela; preventing the deaths of
hundreds that would have happened if she had succeeded.
Despite the lack of logic within this scene, it is actually quite a cool turn of events, and only adds to the level of entertainment that the Undertaker provides. For that reason, this clocks in at Number 10.
9. Ordering Pluto’s Death (Episode 23: His Butler, Ablaze)
In possibly the best story arc within the entire series, Ciel Phantomhive finds himself alone after Sebastian has abandoned him,
symbolizing a lack of resolve on Ciel’s part that disgusts him.
Eventually finding his way back to the Phantomhive Estate, Ciel finds
London lit up in flames because of his demon dog, Pluto, who had lost
his mind due to the interference of Angela. Finding his servants there,
Ciel has a brief moment of clarity, where he realizes that sacrifices
must be made if any good is going to be achieved at all. So, Ciel
swiftly orders the death of Pluto, an act that not only proves
invaluable later on but restores Sebastian’s faith that Ciel is a
This moment is indeed a short one, but one that allows us to delve deeper within Ciel’s character and actually provides him some
development as well. For that reason, and for the way that it was
competently staged, it comes in at Number 9.
8. Lau’s Betrayal (Episode 20: His Butler, Escapes)
One of the more ambiguous characters of the show is Lau, a Chinese noblemen affiliated with Ciel Phantomhive who specializes in opium
dealing. While he is a friend of the Phantomhive family is does provide
some earnest comic relief within the show, his looks and highly
mysterious words paint him to be a potentially dangerous character.
This culminates in Lau becoming tired of merely serving as a piece
within Ciel’s “chess game” against his enemies, resulting in his
betrayal of Ciel in order to become a player himself. because of him,
the Phantomhive household becomes implicated in a large-scale drug
operation, Ciel gets arrested, and Sebastian is subjected to brutal
torture at the hands of the Queen’s men and Angela herself.
As great as it is, the betrayal is short-lived and Lau quickly meets his end at Sebastian’s hand when he and his master escape prison and
pursue their former compatriot. Lau doesn’t seem to mind however,
bearing that same sly grin he always wore as he sinks into the Thames.
It’s not a surprising turn of events but it is well-handled, and gives
some much needed character development to one of the background
characters we rarely gave a second thought to. It was a good move on
the part of the series, and well-deserving up the Number 8 slot.
7. London Bridge Is Falling Down (Multiple Episodes)
A motif of the series that endures throughout its entire run is the usage of the song “London Bridge is Falling Down” in a variety of
excellent-utilized ways. Sometimes in orchestral form, and other times
in song form, all versions of the song consistently permeate throughout
the show and provide a level of creepiness that only adds to the dark
atmosphere of the show.
The best times in particular involve a very excellent one-shot villain by the name of Drocell, who kills little girls by transforming
them into living puppets at his control. By singing a variant of
“London Bridge Is Falling Down,” he strengthens their composition and
animates them toward murderous purposes. It is actually quite
frightening to hear this song in association with that, partially
because of its simplicity and familiarity as a happy song meant for
children. It’s unsettling and works very well for the show’s more
serious moments. It’s always a joy to hear it, as it is an indication
of the creators actually showing great effort and thought on the show’s
composition. For all those reasons, it has secured the Number 7 slot.
6. Series Finale (Episode 24: His Butler, Swift)
One thing that Kuroshitsuji did right was to have a strong conclusion to tie everything at the end, and this is epitomized in the
final scene of the last episode, in which the contract itself between
Ciel and Sebastian is completed. After Sebastian finally kills Angela
and completes Ciel’s revenge, Ciel falls to his death only to awake
floating on a boat captained by Sebastian. As they float across a dark
and steamy river, Ciel’s memories from his lifetime flow through his
cinematic record and he thinks of all those he had left behind. Ciel
does not feel regret however, even as they approach the end of their
journey, at which Sebastian will inevitably eat his soul. Promising to
make it as painless as possible, Sebastian is taken aback as Ciel
requests for it to be as painful as possible, so that the pain of his
lie can be carved into his soul. Smiling at his master’s resolve,
Sebastian performs his signature line “yes my lord” and then advances
on Ciel to begin the process. From there it fades to black and the
This final cap on the relationship between Sebastian and Ciel is wonderfully handled, and is a reflection of a bond that surpassed a
simple contract. For the show’s entirety, they were the central part of
each others’ lives, and the way that the series wraps this up is highly
well-done. For that, it deserves the Number 6 slot.
5. Rooftop Conversation (Episode 23: His Butler, Ablaze)
In one of the most character driven points in the series, Sebastian abandons Ciel and begins to question his master’s resolve in completing
both his revenge and their arranged contract. Upon leaving Ciel, he
proceeds to watch over London from a rooftop, along with Ash: the
Queen’s Butler and the culprit behind the arson of London as a whole.
While gazing down upon Ciel, the two share a highly revealing
conversation, in which Ash attempts to bring Sebastian over to his
side. This conversation comes to a head when Ash reveals that he is
indeed a hermaphrodite, and that he and the angel Angela are one and
the same. All of this does little to sway Sebastian however, as the
conversation quickly reveals both the insanity of his adversary and his
desire to sponge the world clean of impurity ultimately bearing all the
resemblances of murder. Having enough, Sebastian leaves after seeing
Ciel regain his resolve; returning to his master and preparing to
commence the final battle against the twist angel.
This is a very short moment within the series but it does a great job 0of expanding on the story, giving us more development for
Ash/Angela’s character while even subtly commenting on the relationship
Sebastian has with Ciel. For that, as well as the freaky twist, it goes
up on the list at Number 5.
4. Final Fight (Episode 24: His Butler, Swift)
As I’ve stated before my Number 6 slot, one of the greatest things that Kuroshitsuji nailed was its ending, providing a strong conclusion that was not only
satisfying but competently wrapped up all the storylines without
feeling artificial or forced. Perhaps the moment that best epitomizes
this (despite my comedic picture above) is the final battle between
Sebastian and Ash/Angela, which amps everything to eleven.
Although initially one-sided in favor of Ash/Angela, Ciel’s precautionary actions to order Pluto’s death (detailed in my Number 9
slot) actually pays off, as it cuts off the source of the fallen
angel’s strength and leaves him open to counterattack. Deciding to go
all-out, Sebastian requests for Ciel to close his eyes, as he plans to
transform into his truest state and he does not wish for Ciel to see
it. Agreeing, Ciel closes his eyes as Sebastian begins his off-screen
transformation, its full visual only hinted at through extreme
close-ups and specific pick-up shots. Whatever its however, it
certainly is satisfactory in unnerving Ash/Angela, as they scream in
horror while Sebastian proceeds to massacre the angel while he counts
to ten. After ten seconds have passed, the angel is dead and Sebastian
reverts (one again off-screen) into his “normal” form, and is next seen
smiling at Ciel.
While this fight isn’t exactly a long one, the writers and animators pack every second of screen time full of excitement and excellence. The
music is great, the visuals are very well-done, and this scene
solidifies Sebastian as a demon badass, on the level of those like
Alucard from Hellsing. It was a great way to cap off the main conflict of the series, and deserves the Number 4 slot.
3. Mental Break-Out of Angela’s Prison (Episode 18: His Butler, Transfers)
One of the darker turning points in the series is when it is revealed that Angela, a minor supporting character in one of the
earlier episodes, is actually an angel with a twisted sense of purity
and spiritual cleansing. As a way to propagate her beliefs, she kidnaps
Ciel Phantomhive and uses her powers to tamper with his memories,
trapping him within a falsified utopia that would ultimately kill him.
Within the memory, Ciel sees both of his parents alive as they beckon
to him, asking him to ease up and accept their embrace. At first Ciel
falls for it, but stops after his father states that his hatred is
filthy and he needs to dispose of it. With that, Ciel snaps out of his
trance and screams at them that he cannot let go of his hatred,
otherwise his existence up till now would have been in vain. With that
outburst, the illusion dissipates and Ciel awakens out of his mental
prison perfectly intact.
I love this moment for a variety of reasons. For one thing, it is possibly Ciel’s singular most powerful moment in the entire show, as
this is when he fully affirms without any help his determination and
will towards achieving his long-sought revenge; especially at the pain
of giving up this great illusion before him. Also, I love it because it
reminds me of the episode Perchance to Dream from Batman: The Animated Series,
in which Bruce Wayne goes through something similar and addresses it
similarly. It’s strong, well-written, and more than deserving of the
Number 3 slot.
2. Death of Abberline (Episode 20: His Butler, Escapes)
Simultaneously the saddest and most influential moment in all of Kuroshitsuji is the death of possibly the best supporting character in the entire
series, Fred Abberline. Up until his demise near the end of the show,
Abberline had only had a few occasional appearances as a young officer
of Scotland Yard who believed in justice, and as such found himself
often siding with Ciel Phantomhive. This support comes to a head when
Ciel is imprisoned on a falsified charge, leading Abberline to
officially join Ciel’s side and is actually offering himself as an ally
for the young Earl. Surprised and taken aback by Abberline’s selfless
offer, Ciel finds Abberline worty of his words as the agent of the law
proceeds to aid Ciel’s escape and directly allows him to be reunited
with his Demon Butler, Sebastian.
Despite Abberline’s help and a shared background due to his earlier strife, Ciel dismisses Abberline, stating that while he belongs in the
darkness, Abberline is within the light. The Earl then leaves, stating
that if Abberline wants to live, he should avoid him at all costs. Too
loyal and upstanding for his own good however, Abberline ignores Ciel’s
request and follows him as he confronts Lau on his ship. He watches the
fight until Ciel is down and Lau goes for the killing blow, when
Abberline saves Ciel’s life by jumping in front of the blade. Mortally
wounded and dying, Abberline tries to comfort Ciel by saying that now
his sacrifice has given him a future; ignorant of the fact that Ciel’s
contract forbids him from having a future.
While it is arguable that Abberline died in vain, his death was one of the most touching and well-handled scenes in the show. Abberline was
an example of when Kuroshitsuji executed a supporting
character correctly, which equated to having fewer appearances but not
suffering from lack of character development or impact. In actuality,
Abberline’s death was highly influential on the conclusion of the show,
as it is the direct event that leads into and causes my Number 1 moment
in the first place. For all of that, and for the fact that Abberline’s
presence is sorely missed after his death, this gets the Number 2 slot.
1. Sebastian’s Absence (Episode 22: His Butler, Terminates)
In possibly the biggest turning point in the entire series, Sebastian Michaelis actually abandons his master Ciel Phantomhive, whom
he had served faithfully up until this time. This leave of absence is
brought on by a sign of weakening resolve on Ciel’s part, when he
orders Sebastian not to finish off their enemies for fear of causing
more deaths; especially with the death of Abberline still weighing
heavily upon his part. This thoroughly angers Sebastian and he proceeds
to leave Ciel to his own devices, as he ignores Ciel’s summoning orders
and leaves no message behind.
This sets up for the best arc in the entire series, as Ciel finds himself without money and forced to travel on his own to London. During
this time, Ciel comes to appreciate everything that Sebastian has done
for him, as he finds how difficult to make it on your own when you’ve
spent all your time having a demonic servant do all of your work for
you. By the end of this trek, Ciel single-handedly regains his resolve,
and focuses one more on completing his vengeance with or without the
help of Sebastian. This culminates in Ciel unwittingly putting himself
in certain death, only to have Sebastian return and save him.
This whole time within the series that Ciel is on his own really provides great character development for both himself and Sebastian.
Ciel develops into a much more independent person and his often-stated
determination is given increasing amounts of weight and depth. As for
Sebastian, his act breaks the tired mold of complacent servant that the
series had set upon him, and even hinted at a feeling of being hurt
emotionally on his part, as he had been taken for granted by Ciel at
this point. Inevitably because of this story arc, their partnership
becomes stronger than it had ever been and ultimately both characters
fulfill their motivations. For its excellent writing, acting, and
development, it is more than worthy of the Number 1 slot.
Well that’s it for this time guys! Until next time, stay gold.