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Hiiro no Kakera – 13 (END) »« Hiiro no Kakera – 11

Hiiro no Kakera – 12

「決戦の刻(とき)」 (Kessen no Toki)
“The Hour of the Decisive Battle”

O hope, hope, wherefore art thou, hope? I think “shit hits the fan” describes this episode very aptly and all I can say at the end of the day is: oy, Grandma – how about we stop being so stingy with the information? All the artifacts are now in Logos’ hands, and there really isn’t anything to give the protagonists any hope; the seal is broken, and the Onikirimaru will presumably be released. Of course, there’s also the issue of what it means for Takuma since the sword is closely connected to his demonic nature. It’s possible that he might even be used by Aria to achieve her goals, although I don’t see this as a very likely course of action. In any case Takuma looks very close to awakening the legendary Oni, and hopefully Tamaki can somehow become the Tamayori Princess in time to prevent that calamity. A repeat of the myth will just be too upsetting to see, especially since the ending is so tragic. Zwei’s assessment of Mahiro already bothers me, and I assume his reluctance to keep living is handed down from his ancestors – he’s always known more than he lets on, and it’s likely he’s even aware of the rest of the legend.

Having that knowledge is probably excruciating, and it’s this episode I realized what a truly layered character Mahiro is. It’s easy to pass him off as the token loudmouth, especially in multi-lead adaptations like these where there just isn’t enough room or time to cram everyone’s routes into one series and make it coherent. It becomes even more of a problem when a studio chooses to focus on one person’s route, as Studio DEEN seems to have chosen with Hiiro no Kakera – so when secondary characters are explored so subtly and so well, I have to give credit where it’s due. It’s all too easy to degrade Mahiro’s character to a flat one, but DEEN has managed to give him an incredible amount of growth, and it’s really evident here. Not only is he totally bro, he possesses a surprising amount of maturity; in a sense, he plays the clown to keep the atmosphere light, which was why the show took such a darker turn several episodes back when Mahiro’s spirit took a downward tumble.

It’s a different sort of maturity from Yuuichi that I appreciate and as two of the older guardians, he and Mahiro are truly playing their roles very well.

This episode was the penultimate episode before the mid-season finale, and honestly, I have no idea where the story will go. I thought Tamaki and the others would at least secure one artifact, but on the contrary, they lost all five of them – I can’t yet say whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing; it’s certainly different that the heroes are losing so badly, but at the same time, this issue is one that could’ve been very easily prevented if there was enough information given to them. It really irks me that Tamaki has all this determination but no means to actually use it. Everything is in riddles, and apparently no one feels the need to share information with one another, creating needless difficulty and strife.

I understand Grandma’s intention to let Tamaki find the answer for herself (if that actually is her intention), but she has to be given the necessary tools and a moldy storage full of old book just doesn’t cut it. Even Masataka and Ryou look like they know more than she and the Guardians do, and that’s not good. At least Ryou seems like he’s taking a more active part in the story, directly warning Tamaki of an impending betrayal; I’m guessing it’ll either come from Shinji, or even Grandma herself.

P.S.: Oh Suguru, you are so officially a troll. And lol @ Gullible!Takuma

P.P.S.: … Ka… zaa… na…?!

Full-length images: 5, 29, 31, 34, Preview 2.



June 18, 2012 at 2:04 am
  • June 18, 2012 at 8:05 amJenanime4eva

    LOL, was I the only one who found Suguru’s “I won’t let you go home” line at the end segment slightly disturbing? XD

    Now that two birds have been killed with one stone i.e. the final two seals have been broken in one episode, hopefully we can expect the plot and the team dynamics to really pick up now :).

    Hooray for more Tamaki/Takuma shippy goodness! :D

  • June 18, 2012 at 8:48 amAutumn The Cuzzy

    Very nicely done, the tension cranked up to 11 this time around. I expect *all* the guardians will finally have their “legendary” natures revealed next episode, since the Onikirimaru has been loosed. Well, almost all, I think…

    Show Spoiler ▼

  • June 18, 2012 at 2:35 pmStereoman

    Yakisoba-pan really baffles me. Noodles and bread… I’ve seen it so many times but I still find it fascinating… o.o

    • June 18, 2012 at 3:22 pmJenanime4eva

      Mmmmm, yummy carbs :P. I’ve seen my friends put chips and crisps before in their sandwiches which has always made me go o_O. I guess some people really love their carbohydrates XD.

      Mind you, I kinda want to try yakisoba-pan now just to see what it tastes like. I love yakisoba so it could be quite nice :).

      • June 18, 2012 at 9:21 pmWenike

        Back when I had braces, my brother and I had the idea to put potato chips into our PB&J sandwiches to give the crunch factor we were used to (crunchy peanut butter was forbidden with the braces, creamy was fine and was what we got).

      • June 19, 2012 at 12:20 amBakaMochi

        The chocolate-covered potato chips in Ben and Jerry’s Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night Snack was sooooooooo good. So sad they don’t have that in Canada :(

  • June 18, 2012 at 8:32 pmrandom viewer

    I think it’s the Grandma who is the one that betrays everyone and later says that it was the best option to get rid of the Oni once and for all. Shinji was probably following her orders anyways so it’s not really his fault. But I would like to know where this plot is going after another repeat of the heroes failing their guardian roles again.

  • June 18, 2012 at 9:02 pmPeteL

    These guys lose more than FAT Chick doing Jenny Craig diet. They also suck more than newborn suckling a nipple. Is the mangaka related to the one that does Saki – Achiga-hen- Episode of Side A? LOSERS!

  • June 19, 2012 at 12:15 amKagura

    its a bless to be one of takuma x tamaki shippers! Gog bless u, the director of Hiiro No Kakera and the author ^^

  • June 19, 2012 at 7:31 amYes!@

    This really stinks! Everything in the show is great; but our team keeps losing!!! I’m angry. I like going the a ball game, all of the team are superstars, but they lose game after game. Then people don’t go to the court any more and there you are sitting in an almost empty court, grasping for hope and yout team loses again!!!!
    Come on take those last 2 items from Aria, pull a power up and get them I’m rooting for ya!
    It is time we win one and strat to turn the losing streak!
    PS I have a weird feeling that Vier and Aria will turn good and/or be betrayed also by the “higher ups”. The way they behave and talked was “different”.

    • June 19, 2012 at 11:57 pmBanana Furikake

      It’s like gambling. You keep on losing and you keep on doubling down. Soon enough you’ve lost your house and you have those “debt collectors” on your behind.