Thank you everyone for the warm welcome! I’m covering for Divine, and will do so for today’s episode as well. Hopefully, I can deliver! Feedback is always welcome, so please don’t hesitate to comment. Now, without further ado: Guilty Crown Episode 20!
「追想 a diary」 (Tsuisou)
This was a pretty ‘quiet’ episode by Guilty Crown‘s standards, which is both a good and a bad thing. First, the good: exposition is never a bad thing. Next, the bad: this is the lead-in to the penultimate episode – not a good time for an info-dump, especially if it’s something viewers can piece together themselves. In any case, here’s a brief rundown of the ‘most important’ revelations:
- Mana has completely taken over Inori
- Gai is not holding back anymore
- Both Kurosu and Keido were aware of Daath’s plan to use Mana as Eve and also the fact she chose her unborn baby brother as her ‘Adam’
- Keido began farming little boys (among them a young Gai ) to make his own Adam
- Keido kills Kurosu, seemingly out of jealousy , after his inferiority complex rears its ugly head when Kurosu catches Keido reading his diary
- Voids are essentially parts of Mana scattered during Lost Christmas
Now, onto the tl;dr.
It was nice to get confirmation on some things I was unsure about. Shuu’s Void, for one. I was clear on what it did, but I wasn’t exactly sure what it was, because he pulled out that new arm with his left hand. Does he… really need his right arm then? So it was nice to get an explanation on that front, and it confirms Shuu’s Void as the titular ‘Guilty Crown’.
And whether for better or for worse, there’s also confirmation on Mana and Shuu’s relationship: biological siblings. Although it doesn’t come as a surprise, it’s been rather vague… especially since Haruka only referred to Mana as ‘her daughter’ last episode and didn’t elaborate on their relationship. And uh, also because it’s incest and I personally didn’t think GC would go there, with how much they push the whole ShuuxInori deal. But a confirmation is a confirmation. So um, thanks, writers.
Kurosu (voiced by Seki Toshihiko) was also good. A little more of him would’ve been nice because he has a lot of material to work with. Plus, he’s always been this omniscient presence in the show as the main behind the Void Genome. Keido seems to think everything is Kurosu’s ‘will’ (although if that’s just guilty conscience or genuine respect/fear talking, I’m not sure) and by that notion, it’s too bad we didn’t get to see more of him. But Kurosu Ouma was always a character meant to be viewed through someone else’s eyes, so what can you do?
Now, the bad. This episode was kind of like trying to block a hole in a backed-up dam with toilet paper. Sure, the little connections to past events (e.g. Yahiro and his brother in the park) was nice and it brought the whole Lost Christmas ordeal into perspective. But let’s consider how this episode started: Shibungi. I just about has the same reaction as Tsugumi. How and why is he there? Well I suppose the ‘why’ is obvious, but it’s the how that’s the biggest issue here. Gai… just let him go? With Kurosu’s diary? Just because Shuu deserves to die ‘knowing everything’? It’s not a logic that makes sense; the events just seem to happen because the writers need some way to explain back-story they had twenty episodes to tell.
And then came the shock of the day: Gai calls Keido ‘Dad’. That bit literally took me a couple minutes to digest because… what?
This brings up the same issue last week’s episode brought up when Haruka was revealed to be Keido’s sister. You can’t just drop plot twists out of nowhere (and so unceremoniously at that). Usually hints are supposed to be dropped throughout the series so that when the big moment finally comes, people can appreciate the surprise; those who figured it out can pat themselves on the back and those that didn’t can still go back and see that the hints were there. But this? This is worse than Haruka and Keido by far because what interaction has Keido and Gai had, really? There’s no build-up, no anticipation, no pay-off. Of course, the whole ‘Dad’ thing turns out to be fake, and it’s just Keido ‘rearing little boys’ to be Mana’s new mate. That’s a whole other issue onto itself, but I find these terrible exposition techniques to be a bigger issue since it’s the most influential factor in how viewers perceive the plot.
I suppose putting aside Shibungi and Gai/Keido, the rest of the episode really wasn’t too bad; it’s just some issues were too big to ignore. Other minor issues were still present, but it’s the typical stuff you can overlook. The very end of the episode was actually quite sweet, with Haruka revealing that Shuu’s name stands for ‘group’ – because unlike him, Kurosu wanted his son to ‘be with everybody’. As a mid-season episode this actually would’ve been pretty great. But that’s just the thing – we’re at the end here, and after Shuu finally stepped up last week, I really wanted something more. It’s a letdown, but hopefully the next episode can wash away the bitter taste in my mouth. I stuck with you all this time, Guilty Crown, don’t let me down now!
And with that… BakaMochi, out!
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