I really loved The Tale of Will the Shinigami OVA. It was really interesting to get an insight in to how the world of Shinigamis works.
My only question is what happens to the interns who fail their exam.
If Shinigami are former suicides being punished in the afterlife and working to earn ‘forgiveness’, what happens to those deemed 'unfit’ for the role of a Shinigami? What happens to those who CAN’T have a chance at earning forgiveness?
The Shinigami world intrigues me so much. We better get answers.
Looking at Chapter 115, there’s actually a little more information we can gather about the Shinigami. First, there’s some things we can gather about death scythes when Othello reveals his..
Othello has never customized his death scythe. Considering he’s stated previously that he hasn’t been to the human realm in about 50 years, it would stand to reason that he wouldn’t need to use his scythe much. However, he still has his own scythe. All Shinigami must be given one to use even if they aren’t assigned to collect souls. Since Othello has never saw any reason to customize, and his lack of confidence concerning using it, it’s possible that he’s collecting very few souls if any at all.
Secondly, Grell remarks that the sight of this uncustomized scythe is reminiscent of a training scythe - which was similar if not identical to those seen in the OVA “The Tale of Will the Reaper.” All Shinigami must be given these type of scythes to train with. However, since Grell also comments about not imagining someone still using this type of scythe, it must mean that just about all active Shinigami must customize their scythes. So far, ever Shinigami we’ve seen has used one that they’ve have customized. It could be a right of passage. Even William, who follows the rules very carefully, has his pruner scythe.
Othello also asks for Grell’s protection. This would mean that while all Shinigami might have greater strength and abilities than humans, there is still some differences among them. This might be due to experience, and Othello doesn’t seem to have much experience in these sorts of matters, or some Shinigami are simply stronger physically. This might have something to do with why they are assigned the positions they are. Othello has admitted he’s not confident in his abilities, which would mean he wouldn’t be good at Grell’s job. Later, he even seemingly taunts Grell regarding her interest in the science and research that his job requires.
Lastly, Othello tells Grell that collecting souls is the most important job of the Shinigami.
It’s hard to tell how sincere Othello is being since he seemed to be teasing Grell a lot, but it makes sense that it would be the most important job. While Othello appears quite intelligent, and comments Grell would understand his work even if he explained it, there’s a strong chance that collecting is held in higher regard.
Finally, we have a few more hints about the Shinigami!
This is about Will the new Grim Reaper observing life stories of all sorts in the world regardless of good or bad. He just observes the soon-to-die souls discreetly. It is this Will who fell in love with a human girl, but this girl didn’t have long to live. The girl was also in love with Will. Torn between love and the principles of Grim Reaper, he chose love in the end. He wanted to save the girl despite breaking the rules. Will’s friend who helped them was the kind, redheaded Grim Reaper - Grell. Will and Grell’s effort were in vain. The girl died in the end. Will told the God of Underworld that he’s willing to disappear and offer his soul in place of the girl that he love and so, the girl was saved. But there was one condition, that is that all of Will would be wiped out of the girl’s memory. Even so, it did not matter. Despite the memory loss, there must still be some evidence of love within the deepest part of a soul and no one could take that away. Will was gone but the girl was revived and continued on with her life. She fell in love as expected, bore a child as expected, and named that child Will.