「かれんビー 其ノ伍」 (Karen Bii Sono Go)
“Karen Bee Part Five”

If only all episodes of House M.D. were this entertaining. Patient is afflicted by a mysterious disease, perverted “doctor” works backwards to find out how it happened, and when he gives the patient a sponge bath, he has an epiphany. He quickly consults with his team of specialists (a vampire and a cat girl), and decides to try and absorb the disease by kissing the patient. Wait what?

I know this is still Karen’s arc, but I simply can’t wait for Tsukihi to get more screen time because she has a vivacious charm and sarcastic wit that makes it easy to overlook her short-temper. Even when she does get angry, she wins me over with lines like “platinum mad.” Her banter with her brother in this episode was a good example of that wit at play. It’s also admirable that Tsukihi, like her siblings, doesn’t regret anything, other than not regretting enough. The Araragi family is a family that stands fully behind their actions and doesn’t hide from the consequences of those actions.

Araragi’s desperation when he worries about his sisters is plainly evident throughout. Despite the house being full of girls, he doesn’t even think twice about putting on clothes before he questions Tsukihi about the events that have transpired. I’m not exactly sure why he had trouble making friends before, but judging from Hanekawa’s reaction when he dropped his towel, I bet he could add friends girls to his harem easily if he just wore a towel around all the time. Quick poll: how many of our readers would be willing to join Araragi’s harem? I know there’s at least a couple of commenters who would (you know who you are)!

All hijinks aside, we (and Araragi) finally learn what happened to Karen when she met up with Kaiki, at least from what Tsukihi and Hanekawa know. Kaiki is a supernatural twist on the most modern day of villains – the heartless, capitalistic con man, the likes of which can be seen in the Ponzi schemers who have bilked many out of their life savings. These individuals have a flawed conception of money’s value, and have no scruples to prevent them from making and taking money in the most unethical ways – because in the end, they believe they are still doing some good by putting that money back into the economy. And just like those real life villains, Kaiki sits at the head of a table in a conference room, ready to swindle another hapless victim – except instead of going after well-heeled people, he goes after the easiest of prey: middle school students. For me, these things made him a villain that is way easier to hate than most of the ones we encounter in fiction.

Kaiki is quite the impressive villain too. Everything he does suggests that he’s always one step ahead of Karen. He didn’t even flinch when he found out that she had tricked him, he easily figured out that someone had helped her find him, and somehow, he was prepared for a confrontation with her as well. All he had to do was put on his white gloves, touch her forehead, and she was afflicted. I’m not quite clear about how the disease works either – does it prey on her imagination? Kaiki is quite possibly the most economical villain as well. There’s also nothing that can get your blood boiling quite like seeing a man raid the wallet of a helpless fifteen year old girl – especially when he does it as a payment for the very acts that incapacitated her.

What I’m now worried about the most is if Kaiki goes after Hanekawa, the person who tracked him down. After watching the 15th episode of Guilty Crown, I don’t want to lose another one of my favorite characters, and I’m sure that Araragi feels the same way. It was hilarious watching his reaction to her “golden ticket” apology as his reactions exactly mirrored my own, and I was so glad that he didn’t even hesitate to tear it up once he heard about the ticket’s consequences either. I couldn’t help but find a lot of Hanekawa’s lines ominous, such as her prediction about Araragi and Shinobu’s relationship, and after such a nice walk through a beautiful bamboo-lined pathway, I just hope it’s not the last time we’ll get to hear her catchphrase either.

Araragi may be accused of being a pervert all the time, but one thing he can never be accused of is indifference, especially towards the people he cares about. He may need Karen to point it out to him, but just like her, he cannot stand idly by when someone needs help – and in this case, it’s his own sister. The dynamics between the sisters and their brother has been one of the most pleasant surprises in this series so far; it somehow manages to feel like a perfectly natural sibling relationship. In other shows, a scene where the brother gives his sister a sponge bath would have heavy undertones, but so far this feels as natural as you could expect a sibling sponge bath to be, which I admit isn’t saying much. In any case, Karen is so relaxed she can even spout off a hilarious haiku – before becoming serious and telling him what really happened between her and Kaiki.

Karen is in many ways, just like her brother. They both realize that life is more than money, even if they differ on the exact percentages. If I had to guess, I’d say her personality is probably similar to what Araragi’s was like when he was younger. Like Hanekawa alluded to in the previous episode, he sees some of himself in Karen, which is probably why he’s now patient with her, gives her good advice, and why he will go to any distance to alleviate her suffering, having already experienced it himself. It also doesn’t hurt that he has a replacement for Oshino that he can turn to now. (I really hope that Shinobu makes an appearance in every episode, even if it’s only her voice.) As for her method of absorbing Karen’s affliction, it’s definitely understandable why Shinobu didn’t prefer it, and given that Araragi has been so reluctant to tell his sisters that he’s partly a vampire, I don’t foresee him explaining things to Karen any time soon either. We’ll just have to stay tuned to find out what the fallout from all this will be.

85 Comments

    1. *nods* I’d rather join Senjougahara’s or Hanekawa’s harem, but I have this strange inkling that one or both of them will kill me before that scheme gets very far <<;;.

      Kumakaori
    2. i dont know…even, no especially as a heterosexual male, i still believe that, as long as no sexuality is involved(*and even if it is ;)*), i would pledge my alleigence and admiration to a man as great as araragi-kun. but im still with senjougahara-san.

      kevro-kun
  1. hmm… thanks for such lengthy post, you are awesome, verdant!
    one think I can promise you is that this is not the last time you will see any of the characters you have seen so far in the series (I don’t think this is a spoiler)
    how Kaiki inflict the poison will be explained in the later episodes, and I have to say, he is awesome this episode… truly represents a master con man 🙂 while I would absolutely avoid him in real life, I want more of him in this show!
    ps. Araragi parents sleeps really well during the night…
    pps. I would voluntarily join Araragi harem if I am a girl…
    ppps. Gahara sama needs to come back soon… and strangely I am growing on Tsubasa’s short hair appearance 🙂

    jrj
      1. actually… toothbrush won’t come up till later (a safe bet is episode 8-9)
        As to the Hawaiian T-shirt goes… we might need a bit of bad-ass and a tiny portion of tsundere and a catch phrase as cool as “you are so energetic, something good happens?” before we can officially join… :3

        jrj
  2. “These individuals have a flawed conception of money’s value, and have no scruples to prevent them from making and taking money in the most unethical ways – because in the end, they believe they are still doing some good by putting that money back into the economy.”

    You put way too much trust in what Kaiki is saying. Remember that he’s a con man. There’s no doubt he doesn’t give much regard for anything besides money, but the drivel about him doing just as much good is just that, drivel meant to anger Karen.

    Jukehead
  3. I wonder if Hachikuji’s courage thing works here… “I have the courage to kiss my sister.”
    Sad thing is as soon as Shinobu said that is as possible to pass on the disease I knew there was a kiss involved. Why couldn’t we have some ritual that involves handstands or something?

    I didn’t see any particular unmentioned symbolism this episode.

    Avalanche
    1. The courage to carry my sister to my bed.
      The courage to remove my sister’s clothes.
      The courage to give my sister a sponge bath.
      The courage to french kiss my sister.

      *In between having a hard-on and face-desking…*

      The Moondoggie
  4. Goodbye to incest subtext. Hello to unsubtle incest!

    Its funny how Karen isn’t that much different from her brother since she shares same altruistic views. Problem is she doesn’t have anyone to guide her like Oshino.

    Koyomi is still an awesome brother willing to take the affliction for himself. I have to wonder what the others will think of kissing his sister. I can picture Tsukihi wielding a knife right now.

    fragb85
    1. pay attention to the whole notion of Show Spoiler ▼

      … the fire sisters are weak, thus their justice is just fake like a game, whereas Basa Nee is powerful enough (in this case her smart and her cat), so she is the real deal. Koyomi doesn’t want his sisters to get hurt because they are weak 🙂

      jrj
  5. Whoa…This show gets better and better with each episode. I definitely can’t wait to see what Tsukihi’s opening will look like either! Compared to Bakemonogatari this sequel has much better pacing, and doesn’t seem like a dating-sim with mystery/ monster/ horror elements tied to it…

    Censor this!
  6. YES I KNOW WHO I AM!

    “Nii-chan ni
    Hadeka mirarete
    Hazukashii”

    If only I could quote this in real life, without the actual situation occurring… HAHA the convenience store Ai joke came back. And poor Karen, it’ll be years before you can match up to the likes of Hanekawa. But I guess you’re not the only one who has to face that.

    I like that Shinobu is making up for the lack of screentime she had in season one. So is she going to be a replacement for Oshino? Assuming he never comes back.

    I also miss the other girls. The only thing that I wish the -monogatari series had more of is group interactions. It’s sad not knowing when the next time I’ll be seeing Gahara and Hachikuji will be.

    Saya
      1. Why. It is an established fact.

        “Take my clothes off. Wipe me down. And put them back on.” lol this is well behaved? Siblings are rarely like their anime counter parts. Mine could never match up to the likes of Koyomi Onii-chan.

        Saya
    1. I don’t think Shinobu will be a replacement of Oshino Meme… he is just too awesome to be replaced… but for the time being, Shinobu is filling in for him.
      Plus, Oshino holds an honorary position in the Araragi harem, he can’t just quit like this…

      jrj
    1. Hold on to that ticket! Run for it, Araragi! Run straight home and don’t stop ’til you get there!
      I read that there is more in that conversation that was edited, because to be honest at first didn’t get it, sometimes she confuse me with her actions. She said to araragi that if he pass the enters exam she let him tough her any of her soft spot???????.

      I don’t think that is a spoiler since was edited.

      oscuda
  7. First order of the day, watch Nisemonogatari and i must say, the series continues to serve us with quirky interaction and dialogue. One thing that really strikes me most (and i courageously admit to this) is how he truly cares for his siblings despite the seemingly “bad blood” between them. I guess I must learn from him (short of the “incest” elements though)

    Just on a side note people –

    1) Seems like the ahoge runs in the Araragis. Karen’s and Tsukihi’s look exactly like their brother’s
    2) Seems like Hanekawa repays the “service” that Araragi gave with the GOLDEN TICKET. Albeit with dire consequences
    3) Between the 2 sisters, the “littler little” sister has a particular sweet charm to her while the “bigger little” sister has a fiesty charm

    c2710
  8. Araragi has been upgraded from a loli “gentleman” to a siscon loli “gentleman”. Though I’d much prefer he didn’t rip up Hanekawa’s golden ticket. lol

    For a con man, that sure is some psychedelic room Kaiki has. Good artistic direction from Shinbo to emphasize the surreal danger that is Kaiki.

    Kinny Riddle
    1. Depends on sales. If Bakemonogatari had not sold huge numbers of Blurays we would not be watching Nisemonogatari now.

      I would love to give my support, but it does not seem anyone is planning to licence these shows.

      hurin
  9. Boo… not enough Shinobu!!
    But yay!!…. we got a bit of Tsubasa.

    The Kimono sister is still annoying, though. I know this series strength is its wordplay, but her parts are just redundant. She’s sorta like that person that beats around the bush and just makes you lose patience every time you take her seriously (everyone has one of those friends in real life), so you just end up not bothering about her altogether.

    Litho
  10. That ending. Oh gods, that ending!!! XD

    I’m sorry though, I just have to say this: what the hell, Tsubasa? Who sends a middle-schooler to meet someone who is potentially a criminal all on their own? That just has me scratching my head like mad! Granted they couldn’t know how dangerous he is, but still, what was Karen actually expected to do? Yell at him and think he’d just stop? That’s just so… dumb! Your ticket does not make up for that!! Okay… maybe a little…

    The antics of the sisters was definite gold here though, even if Tsuhiki is nuts. I like how you could almost tell Shinobu wasn’t telling Koyomi straight-out to kiss Karen cause she’s just a little bit jealous 😛

    Aex
  11. I’d rather get a ticket from Nadeko or Tsukihi instead.

    Another good episode and thankfully we get to see more of Karen. Always nice to see how Araragi interacts with his family. Now if only we got to see more of Hachikuji as well.

    Jason
  12. Both Tusbasa and Hitagi are hard to figure out.

    But at least with Hitagi you know she has a goal and you can sense her working at it.

    Tusbasa is just … wandering around … you don’t get the sense that she has a goal.

    It is like Tsubasas is still searching for something… while Hitagi has found what she was looking for.

    oscuda
    1. someone mentioned last week about a little bit from the LN about that… Gahara Sama and Basa Nee both have goals, and in terms of love interest, actually the same goal. It is just that Gahara Sama played a crazy hand by confessing early and show Koyomi all she could offer first (an analogy is she is like a RPG character that goes into the cave without torch and proper equipments). Basa Nee on the other hand, wants to play it nice and slow… Do you wonder why at the beginning of Bakemonogatari she and Araragi were talking about the cultural fest? She appointed him vise class rep so she can spend more time with him… not that I am complaining, both of them are worth wife material 🙂

      jrj
    2. Really? I find Hitagi pretty straight-forward. Mess with her loved ones, and she’ll friggen cut you! She takes what she said about not surrendering anything she loves to the extreme. Granted the way she talks would make her an almost impossible girlfriend from the start, but you just have to keep in mind that if it ever looked like she actually hurt Koyomi with something she said she’d probably drive herself nuts until she made it up to him. How did she describe herself? “Psychotic late-blooming virgin that would fall for the first really nice guy that paid attention to her”, or something? XD

      Tsubasa… that’s just a whole ‘nother thing. Not even gonna pretend like I know whats going on in her head. I like her and all, but she’s been a little confusing since Nisemono started. Plus there’s that whole thing where Black-Hanekawa implied she only fell for Koyomi because he turned Vamp, but someone who has read the LN probably has a better grasp on that.

      Aex
  13. So based on pacing so far (for those of you’ve read the novel), when will Tsukihi Phoenix arch will start? Since Nisemonogatari will be only 11 episode total, does that mean the current arch will end next episode?

    reader
  14. I must say, I’m really liking Tsubasa’s new look. +1 for girls who can rock a short hair so well 😉
    I really hope Shinobu makes an appearance in every episode too. Sakamoto Maaya <3

    Seishun Otoko
  15. Araragi’s harem is rather impressive:

    – Yandere lover
    – Megane + Nekomimi
    – Teenager + Underclass + Shy
    – Teenager + Underclass + Sexual Harass
    – Loli + No-Direction sense
    – Loli + Vampire + Nudity (New!)
    – Loli + sister x2 + incest (New!)

    Kind of curious what’s more to add…

    Watever
    1. Hitagi is either “tsundere” or “kuudere”, definitely not yandere. Yandere is when they act sweet as sugar, then slit someone’s throat when things start going bad.

      Either way, I love your chart! XD

      Aex
  16. I assume Tsukihi also saw his brother’s body thoroughly as Hanekawa, then why no reaction? Suspicion of Yandere-sister is still in the air.

    Tsubasa is leading Hitagi by a mile in Koyomilympics since she saw Koyomi’s whole naked body.

    Koyomilympics is getting crazier every episode.
    Shinobu +100
    Mayoi +6
    Tsubasa +4 (+1) The double-edge ticket, that didn’t make it that far.
    Hitagi +2
    Kanbaru +1
    Karen -1 (+2) Since she’s about to get a kiss from his brother.
    Tsukihi -6
    Nadeko -100

    pedobearmatt
    1. Going by that logic, wouldn’t Kanbaru be leading overall since she stripped, seen AND felt up Koyomi’s “merchandise” while Tsubasa only got to “see” it? the sisters also got the lead if Koyomi overlook the “they’re my sisters” bit… Shinobu have ALL bases covered and just biding her time

      FantomOmega
  17. i’m assuming that there are lots of people denying araragi kyomi siscon self well… here are some of his ‘doings’
    Show Spoiler ▼

    leo
  18. Poor Karen she will be really scared ! Think about it , you have no force even to lift your own hand , you are a 15 y old cute-girl in your underwear on a bed , your handsome brother come to grab you hand and tell you bluntly that he will kiss you…. sooooo
    ( Karen- You’re kidding ! No!! omg my brother pls dont do it I am your sister , it isn’t right ,it incest, we aren’t that close , I always be grateful for you kindness but this is too much. If Tsuhiki and our parent find out what will we do?? “heart race” You have a girlfriend already well she is not kind but we are brother and sister pls stop and don’t do ‘That’ to me wahhhhh.) Or another reaction (Karen- *cry* that is my 1st kiss so you gonna take responsible(well judging from her cara this won’t happen.)
    And as respond our Vampire hentai will push defendless Karen on the bed in order to avoid her bite and then she will cry but he will end up kissing her and get all disease Karen will gain her force and she will she her brother collapse in front of her … she will gain some love for her Nii-chan and Hitagi will teach araragi a lesson (screen: Red ) Uwah haha

    pokpokza

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