「光と影と」 (Hikari to Kage to)
“Light and Shadow”
As Vividred rolls into what one assumes are its final episodes, things continue their upward trend in terms of seriousness — well, at least… as serious as one can get considering the mayo explosions and bath scenes. To say the least, it was quite… something — seeing how there was both quite a bit of fan service and serious movement of the story this week. There just ain’t nothing like going from scenes with epic censors to ones like this one. But hey, I ain’t complainin,’ though the episode did have quite the lack of all the other Vivid cast as a result.
In any case, the episode itself in general felt kind of like something you’d normally expect to see around now. We get both sides getting closer and closer to the truth in terms of finding each others identities (and ultimately doing so), as well as some revelations regarding the promise to resurrect Rei’s world should she succeed and the events of seven years ago. As it turns out, Kenjirou encountered a being of a higher plane during the incident, who proceeded to question humanity’s ability to harness and properly use a power that can tip the balance of the universe. This ultimately explains what Kenjirou meant about predicting the arrival of the Alones and also combines with the above to give us a more concrete reason for why Rei does what she does (and what will happen to her after the last arrow is fired too).
Pretty straight forward if I do say so myself, though I do wonder if the people giving Rei orders are not merely testing her as well. I find it highly unlikely that she’ll just “disappear” following her last arrow, considering how the crow seemed to have less control over Rei than even Rei herself expected… though this, as well as the fact that she fails in her mission to fire all her arrows at the Alone, makes me really wonder if the end is really coming — despite the other signs present that it is. I mean, with only two episodes left… it doesn’t seem like we’re going to properly get a resolution on the Alones and the test by the higher power and Akane and Rei’s relationship. I suppose it’s possible that they’ll make it so that Rei’s lack of involvement leads to the defeat of all the remaining Alones — assuming there’s a limit to them — and Rei subsequently realizes she was mistaken in her presumption… but part of me wonders if it work out so simply. There’s just a lot of signs that there could be another season coming up with Rei as a Vivid team member, especially when you consider they’re starting to break out new songs from the OST even now. Guess we’ll see.
Author’s Note: I’ll be at PAX East next week, so I will be unable to cover Vividred per usual. Stilts has graciously accepted the role of covering episode 11 in my stead though, so there will still be coverage next week.