「有為転変」 (Ui Tenpen)
“The Way of the World”
As mentioned last week, I still prefer the timid Anri who has a complex with emotionally affixing herself to others over the Saika-wielding one who does it to counterbalance being possessed. In the first case, she’s helpless and someone you want to protect, whereas in the latter case she’s kind of scary and makes you want to stay the hell away from her. However, kudos to Anri for not going ape-shit insane for having all the Slasher voices constantly echoing in her mind, which is something Haruna couldn’t even bear a couple of minutes of after she let her have a taste of it. So as hinted at briefly at the end of the previous episode, Saika is what eventually killed both her parents, but it’s revealed here that her mother was indeed the original. While I didn’t find the whole murder/suicide due to an abusive father bit all that surprising, the scene with Anri grasping the sword and being overwhelmed by the voices within Saika for the very first time was pretty intense. As such, I’m pretty impressed she was able to suppress them for a good five years, even if her personality is well-suited to handle being possessed.
Aside from Anri, it was pretty funny seeing Celty feel attracted to the sight of Shizuo kicking some serious Slasher ass. On the other hand, it was pretty damn awesome seeing him hold his own against a complete swarm of deranged knife-wielding maniacs and hold his own with a fair bit of ease. I’m actually surprised he didn’t get a single cut on him during all that time and end up possessed himself, especially before he got some cut-resistant gloves from Celty. In Mikado’s case, it was amusing seeing his reactions to Anri telling him how she was saved by Shizuo and Celty, which made him feel like that’s the competition he’s up against in trying to win her over. There were some more quirky anime references this time around too, such as the Nogizaka Haruka van door replacement, mention of Kino no Tabi, and a Jigoku Shoujo ring tone, to name a few.
Story-wise, it’s pretty clear now that Izaya’s the one everyone’s going to have to ultimately stop to prevent an all-out war between Dollars, the Slashers, and the Yellow Scarves from breaking out. With the way he explained how he’s been pulling the strings towards this when he was manipulating Nasujima, in conjunction with the official emergence of Masaomi as the leader/founder of the Yellow Scarves with a misguided bone to pick with the Slashers, I get feeling that things will get pretty chaotic in the coming episodes. They’ve hinted at Masomi’s involvement every since the beginning of the second half of the series, plus the new opening highlights how he’s one of the three main players in the story, so that doesn’t come as any surprise. Regardless, I’m really looking forward to the fallout of everything now that it’s been made clear, especially when the preview shows Yumasaki very unlike his usual carefree self.