「Put flesh -輪郭-」 (Rinkaku)

Memo to self: take the stairs. It’s all about aerobic exercise, though – that’s definitely the only reason.

It’s becoming obvious to me that I really can’t cover Another like I could a normal series. I want to gush again about how great this show is at creating a mood, but I’ll try and restrain myself as much as possible. I also want to discuss every possible theory that’s popping into my head, but I don’t want these impressions to evolve into a clearinghouse for rumors and speculation. So I think the best thing is to highlight a few things that really stand out in each area, and let it go at that.

In terms of a qualitative impression, I still maintain this is a superb series – beautifully written, exquisitely drawn and packing the best sound around. It’s a credit to the show that all the scenes in the first three eps involving the elevator were so creepy – again, that sound direction – because you really had a huge payoff here. I also love the nod to “The Omen” with the reference to Kouichi-kun’s next appointment being on 6/6, and then the incident with the pane of glass (if you’ve seen the movie, you’ll get the connection) – very stylish and beautifully shot as well, I might add.

It can’t come as a huge surprise to anyone that Sanae would be the next to die, as she’s been sending up death flags from day one (“Let’s be careful!”) – but what a way to go (remind me not to watch the Blu-ray versions of this anime – or at least the last minute of the episodes). Too bad, I liked her – and I thought there might be a little romance building between her and Kou, as she certainly seemed to have a taste for cherry pie. The question is, what’s the implication of her death? We know that the supposed “curse” can impact family members and other close connections to Class 3’s students, and that Sanae’s brother is in the class. But there are two other distinct possibilities I can see – it could be the direct connection to Kouichi that’s the fatal trigger (Sakuragi saw him just before she died, and Sanae was talking to him on the phone) or the acknowledgement of Mei’s existence (Sakuragi saw her, Sanae was talking about her). Does Sanae’s death invalidate the theory that the ED predicts the death order? Not necessarily – as the ED is all students, and could still prove to to be predictive in that subset. A few other notes:


– The doll shop obaa-san said exactly the same thing to Kouichi this week that she did the first time. Is she a doll herself? Senile? Also, this is surely Kirika, whose studio is upstairs.

A doll fell off a shelf, just before Sanae fell to her death.

– When Akazawa was scolding Teshigawara for telling Kouichi “not to acknowledge things that don’t exist”, she told him “We have enough to worry about as it is.” That feels like a significant line of dialogue to me.

– It’s implied that the curse causes one death per month, but in fact Sakuragi’s mother died on the same day she did. Is that part of the story false, or does it apply only to students – assuming the curse exists at all? And if the curse began in April as Akazawa suggested (with Misaki Fujiwara’s death, presumably) how could Kouichi have been the trigger?

– The Principal apparently stuck the new kid in Class 3 because he’s new himself, and either ignorant of the curse or a skeptic. Nice job, douchebag…

– People referencing things in the past seems to cast the Higurashi Loop theory into serious doubt (thank goodness, say I). If anything this is looking more like “Final Destination” but I don’t think that’s it either. It’s definitely getting harder and harder to rationalize this away without a supernatural component, though.


The role of Aunt Reiko is coming into clearer focus now, that’s for sure. Her headaches are a blatantly obvious death flag, for starters, and she seems like the next non-student to go unless that’s a feint. She also reveals that she was in Class 3 as well, which means she was likely refraining from telling Kouchi the truth intentionally as part of the agreement – and the one thing she made sure to tell him was, “Follow the class rules!” I’m still not sure why someone else in class didn’t simply take over Akazawa’s role and warn Kou-kun on his first day, or why she didn’t do it herself first thing on the second. Her reluctance to spill the beans now implies to me that she faces a paradox – she can’t acknowledge Misaki Mei’s existence, yet she can’t warn Kouichi off without doing so. My current working theory is that as part of the “agreement” to avoid the curse – though with whom or what that agreement exists, I’m not sure – someone in Class 3 is selected as a “sacrifice” every year. Their existence is ignored, or perhaps worse. Maybe they’re given the “Misaki Mei” label symbolically at the time of social banishment, or maybe someone from the family is intentionally chosen (though I doubt you could find a Misaki middle-schooler every year).

A couple of final thoughts… It’s been noted after last week’s ep that the original Misaki Mei – the one from 1972 – has never actually been referred to in a gender-specific way. In fact, if you look at the infamous class picture, the class is actually short one boy from being symmetrical – there’s an empty space in the third row, in front of the tree. And since I speculated on the ED having spoilers last week, I think the OP would make very interesting viewing this week – and I mean frame-by-frame, with a very careful eye. There are interesting things in there, but you have to look carefully or you’ll miss them. Among the most obvious is the mansion which appears at the end of the OP sequence – and somewhere else in the OP too, much more subtly. It can’t be coincidental.


A quick note to those of you that voted for “0” in the sidebar poll about other blogs… Before you give the knife that final twist, I did want to let anyone who might not be aware know that in addition to the shows I humbly cover here, there are several series I blog at Lost in America that aren’t currently covered by any of the amazing RC team – Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou, Natsume Yuujinchou Shi, Bakuman, Hunter x Hunter, and Brave 10 among others. RC is definitely the best anime blog ever – but I hope you’ll stop by and check out my little backwater sometime too, if you get the chance!




  1. Well, I’ve always made an effort to avoid escalators and opt to find a nearby flight of stairs… not too sure about that now and I suppose I have to find a way to avoid elevators by all means necessary. Damnit. The littlest of things really jar me with this show, stupid falling doll. Painfully realistic and gruesome elevator death. Great episode. RIP Sanae 🙁

      1. The first episode didn’t particularly ruin stairs for me– it seems much more cautionary toward umbrellas. Which, really, should be seriously considered. Even setting aside the sharp pointy ends (which this episode did a stellar job highlighting in one scene), they’re made of lots of metal wires and poles, which means if they break there’s lots of potential shrapnel.

        Also, their intended use in storms means that not only are they more likely to be used when lightning is a danger but they’re also likely to be out in windy situations, capable of getting caught like the miniature sails they are. We tend to follow our hands and heads wherever we go, and an umbrella can quickly take over your hands in those conditions, leading to all sorts of unexpected consequences (woops! wind caught my umbrella, better catch it before it gets into the roa– oh, shit, truck).

        What upset me about the umbrella death was that all Sakuragi had to do to save herself was execute a simple arm block, as taught by diverse schools of martial arts, and deflect it to the side– the sort of block that we almost do instinctively whenever we fall to the ground.

        Sakuragi might have been in too much shock or might not have had enough time, but I think it was one of those MOMENTS. We’ve all had them, just before falling or doing something profoundly klutzy, when you know what’s about to happen but the inevitability of it presses so strongly that you accept it and allow it to happen. So the thing that bothered me was that there was something she could do to save herself but for whatever reason she did not or was not allowed to. And anyway, following the inevitability of the moment, you have the idea that it didn’t matter how she died, but that she died. If she deflected the umbrella, her neck would have been broken. If she managed not to break her neck, she would have tumbled out a window, etc.

        Poor Sanae, though. There was literally nothing she could have done to save herself once she was in the elevator, unless the “acknowledgement of Misaki Mei’s existence” is the trigger. In any case, sad to see Sanae go, if only because now Kouichi won’t have anyone to talk to about horror stories.

  2. Lifts don’t work like that.

    I am enjoying the show, but if they kill off every supporting character the moment they get some screen time it’s going to make it hard to develop the plot. Also, seriously, enough of the cutting away just before someone says something important. A few times is fine, but it’s turning into a crutch.

  3. I tried putting myself in Kouichi’s shoes, and I still can’t believe he’s not done prying into the mystery any further. I guess at this point there’s no turning back since it’s “already begun,” but at the same time I can’t help but think Kouichi’s interest for horror is the only thing that ends up getting everybody killed. Didn’t his name signify death or something (I don’t remember who said it). Either that or him being curious is just an unavoidable part of the curse

    1. (while in Kouichi’s shoes)
      You’re from Tokyo and you transferred to a rural school,
      You like horror/mystery stories and there is something definitely weird with your class,
      No one will tell you why, including your own relative,
      People start dying and you hear rumors of a curse and no one still wants to fill you in,
      So what do you do?
      Leave it alone and forget everything?
      Of course not!
      You go out there and figure out whats going on and if need be solved it!
      (or maybe its just me~)

      1. Personally I’d do the same, except I definitely would’ve snapped at someone to just tell me what the damn secret was already. Except Mei. She’s too cute and the closest thing to a friend you really have.

        Hell, somewhere along the lines it’d probably turn into more of an investigation to make sure she was gonna be okay.

  4. Rest in peace, Nurse-san, you were my favorite character in the show :'(.

    Great episode aside from that though, another A+ effort. Week after week this show builds it’s case as being the best show I’ve seen in years. The death scenes are painful to watch, despite being so short they are packed with so much realism that you can’t help but feel genuinely disturbed after it happens.

    But now I’m genuinely curious, how are you supposed to go up and down floors in buildings? So far we’ve learned that stairs aren’t safe and neither are elevators. So it seems our only recourse as a species is to evolve the ability to fly so that we can avoid these tragic accidents.

    1. Take the stairs, don’t carry any sharp objects, don’t run.

      For me, escalators scared me more than elevators and stairs combined when I was a kid. But then, nothing scared me like going down the stairs at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. Terrifying – narrow, tiny stairs, and so dark they looked like a slide. And when a big group of German tourists is coming up behind you at rapid speed…

      1. I was at a preschool in Tokyo a few years ago, and they had a slide outside that connected the top and bottom floors. That seems like a pretty safe alternative (not a steep grade or anything) with a cultural foothold.

        I was rather hoping that the elevator’s emergency brakes would save her at the last second, rusty and poorly maintained though it was. I guess the take-away from this is that if you’re embroiled in a supernatural death curse, are on the top floor of a building and static is overpowering your cell phone, the best recourse is to huddle up in the middle of the roof and force the curse to take the whole building down.

    2. I was really hoping the nurse was going to make it, she was a appealing supporting character. I was rooting for her, since her interest in helping Kouchi seemed misplaced, C mon guys SHE hand his freaking cellphone number and took him for lunch!!! I think the curse is anyone who gets close to Kouchi, in a friendly/flirty manner is going to die. Mei wants him now!!

  5. why why why????

    i wanted the nurse to stay on longer or even survive the show. i was kinda hoping for some love to develop between both of them.

    to tell you the truth… since the start of the series, i had the feeling that she’d be written off but i nv thought she’d be really written off

  6. Didn’t think Sanae would be killed off that fast though she did receive an awful lot of focus this week.

    The students don’t seem to be aware of a Misaki Fujiwara in there class dying in April, which either implies that there wasn’t such a person in 3-3, or that they’re trying to pretend that such a person didn’t exist. Maybe it’s an inherent connection to the desk and anyone who sits in it is suddenly treated as nonexistent?

    Mei seems to be trying to keep the story a secret from Kouichi like the rest of the class but at this point, Mei’s still an ambiguous entity.

    I think the piece of evidence I’m most interested in is the photo. The empty spot in the upper right has been getting to me and none of the students stand out as unusual, no ghostly apparition or anything. Even if that slot was filled, the boys would need to scoot to the right one to create the symmetry. Perhaps it was a hallucination shared among the class?

    1. I don’t think the empty spot in the photo has much relevance. If I understood right what was said last episode then the Misaki from 26 years ago actually is on the photo. And due to the picture always being shown in black and white you can’t really tell which of the girls she is, since the only different thing about her that is mentioned is her being deadly pale.

  7. I noticed they changed the month this episode. Now is it coincidence that its a new month and another death happened? Especially with the “we will tell you next month” from last episode I don’t think that is the case.

    My current theory is each month the “curse” will kill off someone in the class (in order of the ending) and a family member of theirs. But if that is the curse and its been happening for YEARS something just seems really odd. First off a lot of the students were under the impression that the curse wouldn’t happen this year.

    Secondly if the town knows about this curse’s ability to not only kill off students who are unlucky enough to get put in class 3 but a family member as well why on earth is there a class 3 at all? I know damn well I would NEVER let my kids go to a school with such a high death rate.

    And even if I was a completely horrible parent or teacher you would never allow anyone you know into that class for fear of the curse connecting to yourself.

    I am enjoying the show. But I can’t help but feel there HAS to be more to this than just a curse. Even explaining an ignorant principle doesn’t explain why the class still exists at all.

    Are the families chosen as sacrafices? Is the whole town in on it? The town has at least two highschools. So that is a LOT of townsfolk keeping a secret and not just up and moving for their families safety.

    And I still don’t know what to think about Mei. Or the creepy shopkeep who doesn’t appear to recognize our protagonist.

    1. It’s a fictional horror series. You can’t use rational thinking as to why the school continues to have a Class-3 despite the deaths associated with it. If you did, the horror story wouldn’t even exist. You’re just going to have to accept the fact that they’re apparently trying to go a year without deaths.

      It doesn’t necessarily look like it’s a town-kept secret since Sanae attended the other high school in the town and she had no knowledge of the curse.

      1. It is highly implied throughout the series that NO ONE wants do anything with Class 3. It can be shown why with the “curse.” Without really getting into the details Show Spoiler ▼

    2. The students keep mentioning “rules” and “countermeasures”. It is entirely plausible that the students of class 3 have been following these rules for years resulting in a continuous number of years in which the curse did not occur.

      In such a situation, its likely the people in town convinced themselves that the curse was only a superstition or that it had ended.

      Jack Spicer
  8. the moral lesson of the show :
    1.dont use stairs and elevators, use escalator!
    2.dont talk in front of pane of glass that can kill you!
    3.dont carry umberella in stairs!
    4. (dont exist because the elevator too dont have number four in it)
    5. dont cling to one of charaters in this show
    6. have conversation with “something that doesnt exist” isnt allowed!

    if you follow them maybe your death will better ex:drowned,hit by car,fall from 3rd floor, etc.

    1. Beedle (the Bard?) yeah, Mondays were just too insane and something had to drop off my RC schedule. It was actually Natsume or Another, and as much as I love Natsume, it never seemed to draw much of an audience on RC. Loyal, but small…

  9. Memo to self: take the stairs. It’s all about aerobic exercise, though – that’s definitely the only reason.

    But you have an umbrella…

    Yeah, I know about the elevator way before episode 3. I had the same dilemma after episode 3 was aired. 🙁

    I got two choices going home after work: death by stairs and umbrellas or elevator fail(while the elevator radio was playing “Drop it like it’s hot“)

    And was that the nurse gurgling in her own blood over the phone?

    The Moondoggie
    1. Not to mention the fact that if you pause at the scene whereby there is an eye blinking at the third time, you will see 2 good reflections of 2 red eyes. Which is creepy and could probably mean something.

      And just before the red haired doll head drops, if you pause it there, you see a dagger flash. Does that imply that someone with a red hair is going to get her head chopped off.

      Yeah and the coffin scene has been bugging me. Its like the hand inside the coffin moved at the last moment.

  10. This is pure simple speculation but if someone believes Mei exists, someone (not necessarily the believer?) will die. That’s why they probably say she doesn’t exist or act like she’s not there.

  11. “The role of Aunt Reiko is coming into clearer focus now, that’s for sure. Her headaches are a blatantly obvious death flag, for starters, and she seems like the next non-student to go unless that’s a feint.”

    This is surprisingly hard to figure out even though it’s right in front of you. I suspected it reading the early part of the manga and confirmed it on Wikipedia. Sort-of huge spoiler follows.

    Show Spoiler ▼

  12. Reference to Omen, and trying to implement that one classic scene to this anime? Oh god, I love this shit.

    Anyway, if the class wants to keep deaths from happening, ignoring him will just them more harm. Really, Kouichi will just turn to Misaki for companionship, and I could presume hanging out with her will just make things worst. Beating around the bush by the class would just prolong this insanity.

    So they read horror do they? Kouichi and the nurse doesn’t seem to read enough.

    Creepy and grim episode, the lonely street setting up for the near death via glass and queer outburst of the aunt was best.

    Gaze of Providence
  13. No comments about the static? It’s not the first time it happened and the nurse noticed that there shouldn’t have been any since she hadn’t even entered yet as well. Either it really is the supernatural coming close messing up electronics effect or there might have been some actual person listening to their calls.

  14. I know we all saw this coming for the nurse lady but DAMN. Plus the fact that they actually showed her get crushed horrifically in fluid animation (continued hats off to P.A. Works) left a bad taste in my mouth. That’s a good thing horror-wise.


    …I wouldn’t think much of the falling doll, it was probably just to give Mei that convenient offscreen disappearing act. (Happens between Batman and Commissioner Gordon all the time)
    …I can definitely understand Kouichi’s interest about this whole curse thing. Hate how everyone keeps this really big secret from you and you know it’s not for your surprise party. Of course I’m gonna ask other people and find out for myself even if it means getting caught on a class-fixated death curse.
    …And yes, how the principal put the transfer kid to the cursed class because he doesn’t know anything about it was just plain stupid. Definitely LOL’d a bit. (Unless it was the plan all along. OH SNAP!)
    …Not enough Mei this week.

  15. ” – It’s implied that the curse causes one death per month, but in fact Sakuragi’s mother died on the same day she did. Is that part of the story false, or does it apply only to students – assuming the curse exists at all?”

    Actually it’s not “one” but “at least one” death per month, so the number of deaths per month doesn’t have any upper limit.

    On another note, if I were in Kouichi’s position, I probably would have already snapped at someone, threatening them to tell me about the secret. He’s way to patient in my opinion.

  16. So the woman at the doll shop saying that she has no other customers might mean absolutely nothing – if she can’t see a customer, she’s probably forgotten that they’re there at all.

  17. Wow – over a dozen paragraphs in the blog!

    As I was watching this episode over 2.1, I noticed a growl/rumble starting.
    At first I though something was going on outside my place, then I realized it’s
    the soundtrack. People – don’t just watch this with headphones – the background
    sound is very powerful. Assuming how this ends, this is definitely a purchase if
    for no other reason to (hopefully) listen to it with 5.1. Really amazing audio!

    There’s a lot of focus on the doll shop, and in particular, the doll in the casket.
    That’s where he seems always to find Mei. We still don’t know where she “lives”,
    maybe she’s a doll (the lyrics in the OP give me that feeling).


  18. I knew it the nurse would die sooner or later! This episode gave me as much creepiness as Corpse Party did. Damned good sound effect/ambience.
    Now I’m scared to leave the house cause I live on the 12th floor but the digital number was wonky a few days ago and shows 13 instead.

  19. I’m not sure if I’d like the pattern of one person dying at the end of every episode. On one hand, it becomes kind of formulaic and you’d know what to expect, but on the other hand, you don’t know who to expect so it adds to the tension.

    Either way, this is definitely a surprise hit for me. I never thought an anime could create such emotion.

  20. Hell, another episode that gave me the creeps!

    And since everybody is giving their theories, I might as well give mine. My theory is that they have to at least “ignore” someone in class that seems suspicious or more likely “dead”. Since Misaki Mei seems creepy(add the name Misaki), they chose her to be ignored just to save the whole class. But since a student talked to her, which is Koichi, it somehow “broke” the rules, as what one of Akazawa’s friends said. The confusing thing is that why ignore her? What would that achieve?

    Please, I beg of you not to read the spoiler if you don’t want the whole series be spoiled!! I just placed the spoiler here for those who already read the manga and see my theory for the whole series. Those who haven’t read the manga yet and doesn’t want to spoil the WHOLE series, please do not read the spoiler!!

    Show Spoiler ▼

  21. *Akazawa mads as Teshigawara because he didn’t explain all to Kouichi (when Kouichi asks Teshigawara “why did you mean with that call?” Akazawa realizes thats).
    *The curse is “one person or more”, so its not inconsistent that Yukari mother also died.
    *The gender of the 1972 Misaki will be revealed, but its name isn’t Misaki Mei, they never said that O.o
    *Yep, the mansion at the OP is a spoiler. The ending of the story happens there.

    By the way just nothing more discrepances with the novel. First was only around Akazawa, originally Akazawa didn’t have any contact with Kouichi (didn’t go to visit him at the hospital either), and her first words were almost at the end of the story.
    But now that Ayano thing, the one scared after the falling glass, is completely anime-original. She appears at the ED secuence and the OP, so seems she will have more prescence?

  22. Also, too much “Misakis” in here. Misaki Mei. Fujioka Misaki. “1972’s” Misaki. Also the neighborhood is “Misaki-chou”.

    One important hint in this episode was when Kouichi talks to Reiko, he says “I remember the rule n°3, also the n°4”. Whe know n°3, “follow up the class rules”, but n°4?

  23. Rest in peace, nurse-san….you will greatly be missed ;A; I like the way she and Sakakibara talk back about Misaki in episode 2 was it? They look like they were really, really close friends or something. XD

    And well, all I can say about is, whenever a person talks about Misaki Mei or if Kouichi mentions Mei to a person, that person relatively dies, regardless of their connection to Class 3. And I also do have the feeling that Mei is quite a possessive person, wanting Kouichi to see and believe only her and not allow anyone else, including his classmates, to get near or close to him.

    That’s just my theory though. This ep’s death did not surprise me as I already knew she was going to be next, foreshadowing from that doll falling from the shelf or something. The theory of basing the deaths of characters from the ED sequence was dropped off. Seriousness aside, very great episode and amazing soundtrack. The sounds nearly shook me off =)) A+ indeed. The studio who made Another (P.A.Works) is worthy of my praise.

    ..also that mansion from the OP. Same mansion from the ED theme, honestly.

  24. When I was young, I believed that you could survive inside a falling elevator if you somehow managed to jump right before the elevator hits the ground. This thought was then shattered when I entered high school and learnt the concept of relativity 😛

    “Nice job, douchebag…” – lol

      1. Not even sure if laying down will actually save you. Cause the counterweight is at the bottom of the elevator usually, so when you know it smashes, lying down will cause your entire body to recieve the shock rupturing many parts of the body. Standing won’t work either cause you’re bound to break you legs due to the shock and then proceed to die like the nurse due to the spring like effect. The only thing I can say is because this was an old elevator where the lift would collapse on itself, there no real way to save yourself. On the other hand, if you’re in new elevator and one that has rails… the best thing you can do it go to the corner, hold yourself up with the rail, and distribute the shock onto each of the walls. Your legs might get screwed, but at least you’ll survive.

        Sora no Kaze
  25. I’m also calling it right now that the doll storekeeper is a doll herself.

    Ya know, I’m finding it really hard to feel sorry for that class now. It was basically implied that there was some grace-period where they could’ve explained what was going on to Kouichi, but just because Akazawa wasn’t there they let it pass by? Seriously? What, was she the only one allowed to tell him because of her “Countermeasures” position or whatever? I like how no one is actually blaming him for the deaths though, since they seem to actually know it’s more the school and their own faults than his.

    Then there’s what Teshigawara said and how they took it back, plus what I guess he wasn’t supposed to say. I mean, does the curse really reset every month or something, cause if not then they’re all screwed anyways so they might as well tell Kouichi everything. That’d really be the best way to minimize the danger and avoid more collateral damage like the poor nurse.

    The overall mystery of Mei and what is actually going on was really the only draw this week. Everything else with the classmates and his aunt has gotten tedious. They just had to kill the best character…

    1. The conversation at the end of this episode makes me believe that the situation is complicated to explain and that’s why no one has done it yet.

      For example, if, as some posters have theorized, acknowledging the existence of Mei leads to your death, then isn’t telling someone straight out “Don’t acknowledge her existence” itself acknowledging her existence? I don’t know about you, but I would not volunteer to be the person who could cause their own death by trying to explain to someone how to prevent theirs.

      Jack Spicer
      1. Wouldn’t Kouichi have been the first to go then?

        And I get the whole “can’t physically say she doesn’t exist without acknowledging that she does exist”, but the show doesn’t even give the feeling their trying to find another way t tell him. To me it feels like they’re just sitting on their hands hoping Kouichi someone figures everything out for himself since the most direct and obvious path isn’t an option for them. That’s what pisses me off, and you know Kouichi is gonna end up paying for it.

        Hell, as of now I don’t think anyone’s even told him all the class rules in the anime.

  26. Acknowledging the existence of “something” makes what is unknown “known” which may exist weather in reality or to the viewer’s perspective, sorta like the concept of fear of the dark. Do you want what is not there to exist without knowing the consequences? Beetlejuice anyone?

    Kouichi, did you ever hear of the saying “curiosity killed the cat”? I’m convinced now that he gets a stiffy whenever the supernatural is involved, take for example he sees his classmate killed before his eyes but showed mild surprise and this was sorta evened out when he looked concerned when he noticed that his umbrella had a pointy tip which could just mean he’s “only” is concerned about his life and not the life of others,

    Secondly such fear he had in his eyes when the shop owner states that he’s the only customer she had yet still go downstairs to the room with the creepy dolls that he was warned about and he even ACKNOWLEDGED in the previous episode that there is something very, very WRONG about them which may be linked to his close encounter with death but the what about that other guy at school with the weak heart? which means he only wanted to see Mei but wa8it! He was afraid of her when she showed up!? why the hell is he so obsessed about this ‘past story’ and not interacting with his classmates like he does with HER? but since the crap has already hit the fan they will fear him and keep their distance… which will make him even MORE determined to get the story, even if he will have to (inadvertently) kill them to get it…

    Kouichi-san, you sure your not Guilty Crown Shu’s long lost brother? because your similar ‘oblivious acts of ignorance’ is downright uncanny

  27. If the shopkeeper is a doll, could Mei be the one controlling her? The curtained part of the basement where Mei shows up at seems to be right below the front desk.

    Speaking of frame by frame catches, I remember seeing Show Spoiler ▼

    in the first episode’s opening before the OP.

    1. I agree about that frame-by-frame pause, it’s definitely
      Show Spoiler ▼

    2. I thought it was Show Spoiler ▼

      Also, Ep.1 has the pointey umbrella in the opening sequence with the voiceover. And the elevator. People may want to rewatch it if they’re interested in some other possible ways to die. O.o

  28. Here’s a theory:

    The person who gets assigned to sit in the chair used by the original Misaki ends up as the sacrifice whose existence will be ignored in order to save the class. (cursed chair? where’s Naru?)

    Then if 1 person is set as the sacrifice, another person is set as the person who is the only one allowed to pass on the knowledge of the entire story, anyone else who are are members of the class passing on the story dies.

    Acknowledging the existence of that person kills you, if you deny the existence yet a blood relative of yours thinks otherwise then the relative dies (as with the nurse .. I think she actually believed that Misaki exists due to how violently her younger brother reacted when asked who Misaki is, normally if someone does not actually exist you would go -what? who’s that? another transfer student? we don’t have anyone by that name in our class-), but if you acknowledge the existence w/o knowing the curse then you get to live since for you there is no curse. (reminds me of a movie I watched a long time ago about voodoo, it does not work unless you actually believe it)

    So I’m guessing Kouichi is safe while he does not know of the truth.

    Since we’ve seen the ‘nice boat’ and Higurashi endings this show might go with a bad ending.

  29. Guys, here’s a tip – if you have to say “Please don’t read this spoiler if you don’t want the whole series ruined!” – don’t post the spoiler! I’m going to delete it anyway, and I have to try and do it without reading it myself…

  30. So the nurse was the next one to get taken out. I may sound sick… but the way they portray the deaths and animate it is actually extremely well done. I have to hand it to them, it sticks to your mind for a while… plus I’m thinking about avoiding elevators now. I love the glass pane falling down as it alludes to another old horror movie where a man gets his head cleanly sliced off by a glass window. Also the Damien reference is to that same movie. Messing with something that doesn’t exist means death basically, which is kinda scary. Anyways… on to observations.

    – First off, Sanae… though I don’t know if this necessarily means a death flag… but anything related to Class 3-3 incurs memory loss. Plus, we have never heard what the 4th rule is. Unless this is alluding to don’t mess with things that don’t exist.

    – Second… It’s strange for demeanor to completely change when they’re all referring to the same thing. How can a guy from the looks of it calmly not talk about the incident 26 years ago and the accident only to flip when it comes to Misaki Mei. Of course, it could be a trauma, or it’s that scary that it had to be done, or even you really hate getting bugged or annoyed by it, but I strongly believe there something hidden around that.

    – Third, though everyone says the deaths started in May, if the girl that died in the Hospital in April is revealed to be connected to someone in the class, it could only mean that the curse already started in April, aka the first encounter with Misaki Mei.

    – Fourth, it seems the student are on edge are starting to avoid Kouchi,

    – Fifth, the bird Rei always asking why makes it seem like Sanae is hiding something.

    – And lastly, digging in to deep, or noticing what Kouchi is doing seems to be the ones that end up dying so far.

    Though the anime is really pointing towards the supernatural, I still believe there are some definite clues that can proof that Misaki Mei is actually alive… especially if we also take into account the possibility of misunderstandings. Though coincidences may have occurred, or very well planned, it still makes no sense to give a test to Misaki Mei, ESPECIALLY IF YOU’RE TREATING HER AS IF SHE DIDN’T EXIST. Why would you give a test to that specific seat out when you know you shouldn’t mess with or acknowledge something exists… And lastly, for the doll to look so much like Mei Misaki, it’s almost as if the doll used her as a model… Plus the old shop keeper, though she seems like a doll or puppet herself by repeating the same thing… though has mentioned there are no other customers, has not actually explicitly said no one else has come in. Plus the fact that it was so needed to handle Kouchi from day 1… how did they know he was going to encounter and think Misaki Mei exists from day one. If she didn’t exist, they wouldn’t have to worry about it unless everyone can actually see her in Class 3.

    Sora no Kaze
    1. All modern lifts have an auto safety clamp mechanism that prevents exactly what was shown to happen. The animation director or writer was very smart to create a sense of the building being very old as old lifts do not have the safety mechnaism, preserving the realism

      Zaku Fan
    2. I am wondering if the class may be so sort of lottery of human sacrafice, one per month until the one of the school year. And if anyone takes steps to change things they and their family dies.

      1. It pretty much is set lottery style all the way to graduation. I just wonder if this means the entire class is doomed or not. Meaning that the number of deaths may increase later on. And it seems family wise, if you have a family history of being in class 3, then you’ll ultimately stay in that class meaning you can never escape, unless you leave town perhaps.

        Sora no Kaze
  31. Up til now i cannot even be certain that its supernatural. It could very well be a combination of accidents (glass panel) and the work of a killer (the deaths). Also its kind of sucky that Sanae ended up like that. She was one of the few allies he had. I’m guessing the writer wanted to create an increasing sense of isolation as part of the atmosphere.

    If its a killer, i’m guessing Kouchi or Reiko is the murderer with Kouchi having multiple personalities. If its supernatural, really it could go anywhere. Its getting obvious to me that the writer is deliberately paving a big red brick road for the viewer to tread, such as Mei being a ghost, to throw off the viewer.

    Zaku Fan
    1. I don’t think there’s any real way for a murderer, no matter how skilled, to “make” Yukari fall in just the right angle for her umbrella to stab her through the throat. But it’s not impossible for the murderer to tamper with the elevator lift and kill Sanae.

      I think Sanae’s death and the deaths to come will be the work of a killer, while Yukari’s umbrella stabbing was an accident.

      1. It would not end up as a umbrella stabbing, thats pretty hard but you can ensure an accident happens by simply greasing part of the starts with something translucent. Breaking the neck by falling down the stairs would have the same final result though perhaps less terror inducing on the class

        Zaku Fan
      2. If there’s a killer, how does he/she kill a bunch of Class-3 students plus their relatives every few years for 26 years? This isn’t something that just suddenly happened, like the murders in Persona 4’s town. The would-be killer would have to be at least 40+ years old, seeing as how the first murder happened 24-25 years ago (if we exclude the original death), and because I don’t think anyone younger than 15 years old can kill so efficiently. So our suspect/s would be narrowed down to the teaching staff (probably including the teacher in the library, but excluding the new principal).

        Hmm… On second thought, it actually seems quite probable.

      3. I think you’re looking at it from the wrong angle, Yukari mother death, when we learn how that happen could have been orchestrated, on the other hand, Yukari herself, was just an unfortunate accident I believe. After all, remember that Yukari mother was the first to die, followed by Yukari. It could possibly be an anomaly if the only anomaly in terms of the curse where it was an accident to have more then one person die that month.

        Sora no Kaze
      4. I agree that Yukari’s death happened mainly because she was rushing home after hearing that her mother got in an accident while the floor was slippery from the rain, but you can’t really tell by the way the anime presents it. The manga made this a lot clearer; in the anime it seems as though Yukari’s mother died at the same time as her or a little bit after her.

        Also, about the murderer’s age, I think it could be that there’s two murderers. From Reiko (the aunt)’s evasiveness about her being in Class 3, it’s possible that her year in the class was one of the cursed years, and we already know that in 1972 the curse first appeared. Counting Yukari’s death and Sanae’s death as proof of the curse would mean that the present-day curse of Class 3 is the third occurrence of the curse, in 1998.

        So there needs to be at least two culprits, as I seriously doubt that the first murderer, who should be at least 15 in 1972 for the first curse, is responsible for the curse of 1998 (when he should be at least 41). However, the second killer, the one from the curse of 15 years ago (1984), could be responsible for the 1998 curse, since they could be as young as Sakakibara’s aunt Reiko.

      5. Ok, assuming a killer and not supernatural effects, Sanaki’s age analysis seems accurate.

        My intial guess of Kouchi was based on the sentence of his face being familiar to one of his classmates, which leads me to guess he was on TV, which would have him either be a victim or a criminal. This also supplies additional twist near the end from a writing PoV if he was a murderer with amnesia. However, from the age analysis, it does seem less likely which would mean that the recognition of the classmate may be due to his resembelance to someone in his family.

        Reiko painted herself as a suspect with this episode’s actions. The library teacher also seems very suspicious but since the writer seems to be throwing red herrings, the obvious suspiscious characters are instead less likely to be real suspects, so i’m guessing the library teacher ends up some sort of ally.

        Zaku Fan
    2. Actually from the gist of things, I believe it’s been happening for a very long time until recently where they had countermeasures to beat the curse. It’s only now that Kouchi has destroyed the countermeasures and now the curse is going crazy. Not saying that it’s supernatural, but maybe cause they’re going to deep to try to figure out what happened before, the culprit is hiding their tracks. I also think it could possibly be one to multiple killers, though it’s probably the same group since 26 years ago.

      Sora no Kaze
  32. Does anyone have any theories as to what the title of the show, “Another”, would be referring to? Another death? Another Misaki? Another year? I’m betting there’s a big clue in the title that we’re missing, yet it’s way too vague for me to make any connections between everything that’s happening and the meaning of the word. Hopefully we won’t have to wait until the last episode to find out.

    1. This is probably way off, but going off the “ignore her existence as a sacrifice” theory, it could refer to Mei being “another” sacrifice or something.

      Or maybe it’s about Kouichi and they’re gonna start ignoring his existence along with Mei’s because he can’t figure out how to “follow their lead” or whatever he isn’t doing but is somehow supposed to know to do?

    2. Yes, “Another” is quite vague. From the author’ atogaki, he choosed it inspired on the title of other works like “The Other”(1972 movie) and “The Others” (2001 movie).

      It’s connection with the novel it’s easier to see from the japanese, as that “phenomena” is always referred as “mou hitori” (another person, one more). Since the prologue, Misaki died, but there was “another one” on the graduation photo, one who wasn’t supposed to be there.

  33. Right from the first episode I knew that elevator was bad news and I knew that Sanae was going to die of course like everyone else and although I new the elevator would have something to do with it I thought that someone or something would jump out of the elevator to do it just from the way the shots for those scenes were done. I’m kinda sad since I won’t be able to hear the creepy elevator noise in anymore episodes. Or will I?

  34. I completely agree about this show. The art is gorgeous whether it because someone’s taking the elevator the “FAST” way down or someone is giving them self a tracheotomy with an umbrella, I can’t help but look at the beauty in such grisly violence. The twilight of the town is beautiful along with the way lighting and shadows are used. Coupled with that dichotomy of school life and town life, both permeating a tense dread, dripping with the unknown and the uncertain nature of our character, ALL well executed into the plot, which is perfectly paced. Mysteries that aren’t frustrating though, but rather, are profoundly interesting, so much so with each mysterious nuance, a new elaborate fold, to the already fleshed out and engrossing plot, follows. All this envelops the viewer into a horrifying narrative, immersive enough to believe that some where in the world some unlucky bastard is actually going through this hell, trapped in the quagmire of the cursed town. I’m salavating for more! I can’t stop watching and I look forward to it. Not to mention voice work and music that us truly elite. An intriguing premise that is revealed well. I love it. For me it is the pinnacle of horror and of a story, or show or anything. It could quite possible be my favorite of the year and one of my top ever, if it keeps this up. And your coverage is appreciated I love to read your EXTREMELY well done Another posts! Some people are complaining about it, and saying it’s like Blood-C…. Superficial and unreputable anyone who compares them, or doesn’t like blood, and thinks the mystery is frustrating and bitches about it. Go watch a shounen where your spoon fed a story and it’s all about love and friendship beating the bad guy, don’t complain where the punishment doesn’t fit the crime. *catch breath*

    1. As creepy as “put flesh” sounds, the japanese subtitle of the episode, ”輪郭” means “silhouette” and is usually used when referring to adding the outlines/contours to a drawing. So rather than “making a person”, it’s probably referring to a drawing (perhaps Mei’s drawing).

      1. thanks for explaining the translation. i always forget that the subs can lose the nuance of the meaning. it almost seems like the subbers were going with a drawing theme with the titles of ep.1 and 2 and then changed the emphasis of their title translation toward a doll/homunculus theme with 3 and 4 (bones and flesh), maybe just because it’s creepier? (I remember with mawaru penguindrum the subber’s choice of words for repeated phrases changed as the series progressed and more things were revealed.)

    2. The titles may imply the following:

      1. Literal meaning: The reconstruction and resurrection of a dead body Frankenstein-style

      2. Figurative meaning: The construction of something/someone that is “not supposed to be there in the first place” and giving it form. Maybe “Misaki” isn’t supposed to exist (even if he/she does), what is happening is that “Misaki” is slowly taking form as the story progresses, manifesting him/herself through these deaths.

      Kinny Riddle
  35. Kouichi’s indecisiveness has the same quality it had in Hanasaku Iroha. Not sure if that’s a bad or good thing. Initially I found it annoying, but when I think about Kouichi’s blank reaction any time his questions get stonewalled, it seems fitting.

  36. I have been visiting your other blog, Guardian Enzo, because besides the series Another, all the other stories covered by RC are those that I don’t have the interest in watching. So I was pretty happy to find out that you were covering Bakuman and Natsume Yuujinchou Shi earlier. And since you brought it up in the post, I’ve been meaning to ask, since I was diverted from it before,…but why call it “Lost in America” when your website url is “LostInAnime”? I think Lost In Anime sounds nicer ^^

    Primus Lune
    1. Thank you, Primus Lune. Long story short – Lost in America was the name I picked way back when it was still a subdomain on blogspot – I love the movie by that name, and it fit my life at the time. When I went to my own domain I wanted a .com address, and I thought something with “anime” in it would make sense.

  37. Late to the party~
    But here’s my theory.
    I think that the “curse” happens every year, and the way to avoid it is to ignore someone in their class. So I think Mei definitely exists.
    Because, during the original incident, they acted as if someone that was dead was real, it was like adding “ANOTHER”(FUCK YEAH I FOUND THE MEANING OF THE TITLEithink) person to the class. Therefore, every year a student is picked to become the “another” person and is thus ignored, cancelling the curse?

    And about the old lady saying she doesn’t have any customers, but Mei is there, does this mean the dollhouse is her house? :S

    So put simply, every year, my theory is someone who’s dead is revived and put into class 3, initiating the curse. They need to ignore one person to balance it out and cancel the curse. What I don’t get is how can they not notice a person that’s already dead? Are their memories altered as well? So the “another” in the title refers to “another” person in class 3. My guess for the “Another” person is Show Spoiler ▼

    Just throwing out something I thought of while showering. :S

  38. Its hard to predict the story for Another at this point but one thing is easy to predict. Like with Madoka when it was airing vs when it ended, there will be a number of people who will say the plot for this anime is predictable and obvious.

    Too bad from what i see in the comments, its an adaptation from some novel, or it would be much more harder to predict what would happen.

    Zaku Fan
    1. I can tell you, the novel rocks. I never felt a climax so intense by reading.
      But with the anime, as they have to depict them, may turn “some things” predictable. But with reading, without knowing how the characters looks, makes you completely clueless until the very end.

      And don’t forget that most times anime adaptations deviate from the original work. They can even change the ending completely (hope they don’t). They’ve already added original characters, so there may be original death scenes I’m dying to watch xD

      I’m personally excited by Akazawa character, I love her. In the whole novel she only had 2 scenes.

  39. investigation diary, week 4:
    – it seems curse involves both class 3 members and their relatives
    – it seems curse is related to keeping it secret or keeping certain persons from knowing about it
    – Mei Misaki is quite obviously a ghost, and people rightly or not are thinking she is omen of death or even causing the deaths somehow
    – all of this is nonsense to me, after all I’ve managed to discover military activities in Hinamizawa and bio-weapons research by end of season 1 without getting spoiled… I prefer my mysteries to have reasonable solution… Vampires in Shiki were dreadful, but vulnerable to defeat by analysis (and vivisection… hur hur). I am wondering what countermeasures the responsible committee has developed – and how (in)effective they have been in the past.

      1. our superdense hero doesn’t even bother to listen if she shows up in the daily presence check… and I don’t think she is some sort of ignored bullying sacrifice
        corporeal if not alive? some sort of undead? magicaly animated/possessed doll maybe? half human, half doll “cyborg”? whatever the case I need logical explanation and I hope we will find it…

  40. There are three possible routes in the story.
    MC transfer is probably held accountable by a certain group to make some people violate the rules they have created or probably intended from the beginning to check if they would follow in diligently.
    What if the accidents were manifested by some group of people and it turns out that Mei Misaki will save the MC from this problem. It appears anyone that would mutter or even say in public a certain degree of prohibited words would result to their well planned impeding demise.
    If this anime is intended-like Final Destination, where supposed people that survived 15 years ago (the twenty six years ago 1982 plot is irrelevant since the antagonist relative/family somehow survived and vows revenge which is then adult with the plan thwarted during 1997, thus a curse takes place.)

  41. Remember guys, spoiler tags where necessary.

    I’m not even going to attempt to make any speculations, just enjoying the ride while it lasts. All that I’ll say is I would be pleasantly surprised if it turns out there is a non-supernatural explanation for all these, though I would not complain about the presence of the supernatural either.

    I’m even avoiding the novel and manga as I’m told it won’t feel the same reading/watching the story the second time because you already know everything, a bit like how the final twist in “The Usual Suspects” and “The Sixth Sense” works best the first time.

    Gotta love the look Akazaka gives to Teshigawara that just says “You’re not supposed to tell him more than you’re supposed to, you idiot!”

    Kinny Riddle
    1. Actually it’s the opposite. The looks of Akazawa are for “so you told him without explaining? why you didn’t explain it then? you idiot!”.

      Look at the chat Akazawa have with (I don’t know their names) at 18min.
      *Akazawa regrets not having explained Kouichi everything from the very start, she was sick the first day and didn’t attend school.
      *The reply from the megane girl: “what’s done it’s done.” “how will we explain it to him now?”
      *The reply from the boy: “we have to figure it out how to explain it (to him)”.
      *Again the megane girl: “it will be difficult now. if we explain it poorly it could be dangerous. this serves us right (jigoujitoku, meaning this is a punishment for they own mistake)”

      So since he was new at the school (transferred) and obviously didn’t know the “circunstances”, Kouichi was supposed to get a lecture about this curse. But Akazawa was absent that day, and the others where dubitated on who will and how explain it.
      Thing is, nobody explained to Kouichi at the correct time, he couldn’t “protect the rules”, and two deaths happened.

      1. – it seems like it was ok to inform MC about the curse in some specific way “before” accidents started, but once they started it was taboo to tell him anything
        – though it is possible that deaths started earlier with the girl that died in hospital and the whole point is moot…
        – I am not buying the whole curse stuff, anyway, remembering like in Hinamizawa it provided perfect smoke cover to real things happening

  42. Did you notice the person with the knife near the end of the opening in that tv.
    Maybe there was a horrible murder in that mansion (maybe the house of the late “Misaki”)and the actual “Misaki” is a ghost whit a grudge looking for her murderer.

  43. This show i discoverd it yesterday, i was passing along after i’ve already watched Shugo chara and loved it <3. After that was over i began watching and still watching Chihayafuru. Awesome stuff right there. I love horror anime. Watched Ghost hunt, i gatta say episode 11 freaked me out. When i stumbled upon ANOTHER i though, hmm i wonder what's this about? I GOT HOOKED AFTER EPISODE 1. I LOVE IT!!!!!! LOOOOOOOOOOOVE, Umbrellas scare me now

  44. dat death flag
    though i saw that coming since ep 2.

    Really liked her, but isn’t that fall supposed to be extremely unrealistic even if the building’s extremely old? I remember watching something on TV about this, and even if the ropes snapped due to rust and age, i’m pretty sure elevators had multiples of saftey measures- and i’m talking extremely old elevators. meh.

  45. They never actually refer to the Misaki from 26 years previous as “Misaki Mei”. They are always just referred to as “Misaki”, which makes the gender specification omission even more suspect. Combining that with the class photo makes me think we are in for some interesting twists and turns.

  46. Darn it P.A.Work….Do you have to animate that death scene so well!?
    Now i remember how i used to fear elevator as a kid.

    Was trapped in one for unknown duration. The malfunction elevator repeated a cycle of moving down, and opened/closed door missing almost 3/4 of each floor.
    The “best” part of it? I took the elevator at 18th floor/storey.

  47. At this point in time, someone should really tell him to heed the adage: “Curiosity killed the cat”. Seriously, it’s pretty obvious that the more he knows about the incident the more people will die. Is it really that hard to just shut up and let sleeping dogs lie?

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