Ultraman 8 is a bit of a mixed bag for me. The action is top notch. The handling of the moral questions is a bit clumsy. The sudden reveals and twists on twists threw me for a loop. Overall, I enjoyed the escalating complications and the additional intrigue introduced.
Adad’s plan using the fake explosives worked on two levels. First, it set up an extremely tense situation for Shinjiro and Moroboshi. It forced them to work together, which was a big step forward in their relationship. The difficulties they have are well grounded, but they can be overcome. This sort of situation is perfectly crafted to enable that. Shinjiro gets to see how concerned for innocents Moroboshi is. Moroboshi’s eagerness to execute an alien who meets the criteria when Shinjiro is busy protecting the Rena Sayama fans. The situation likely gave them an appreciation for each other’s proclivities. Adad told the Ultramen that they could only save the civilians by killing him. While Shinjiro focused on protecting people, Moroboshi was ready to kill. It is a sick situation, but I think the morality of the situation is fairly clear, it was well suited to bringing the two of them into alignment. Second, when Bemular butts in and almost brings the house down, it gives Shinjiro an opportunity to do something spectacular, both visually and from a narrative perspective.
As for the messy handling of morals, is Adad a good guy? He brutally killed the Igaru prince and he seemed to take pleasure in it. Why is that? Was the Igaru an accessory to murder and part of a conspiracy to murder? I suppose he is, but an agent of the State or an authority should not delight in issuing violence on the populace. Also, Adad seems to know who Bemular is and I think Bemular knows Adad as well. It seems like a decent hook, but it feels a bit off to me.