「―ビフォア・ダ・ゲイム―」 (―Bifoa・Da・Geimu―)
“Before The Game”

My initial thought after this episode had to be… “Woooo… did I just watch that? Did that reallyjust happen?” My mind is still boggled by what I just witnessed, but not in a bad way. It’s definitely in a cliffhanger/must-watch type of way. The top 3 main interest points for me had to be boobs, S&M and rape. That makes me sound like a dude, but hey! Those were my main takeaways and it’s kind of hard to remember everything that happened in the romantic hair-cutting scene after that.

You can blame me for not doing my research – but I had no idea this anime would have so many boobs, breasts and bottoms in your face. It’s not even subtle, it’s so blatantly obvious that this is what sells and so I’m just going to fill my preview images with images of girls. Now I’m not feminist and I’m not going to go around preaching how women shouldn’t be viewed in this manner… I just don’t see why it’s necessary. I think the girls that are introduced are interesting the way they are without the added emphasis on body parts. Shihoudou Ruka (Hikasa Yoko) seems to have her own issues with people staring at her though. She must’ve had a difficult life to assume that all men just want her for sex – which might be true but I’m not quick to judge. She’s also had to grow up alongside of Zaiga Romeo (Nakamura Yuuichi) whom isn’t the best friend you could ask for. If I were to analyze her thoughts even more, I would say that deep down maybe she’s just crying for attention and waiting for someone exceptional to prove her wrong. She’s more than the facade that she presents and she’s yet to meet anyone that’s tried to see past that.

Romeo (Romio would be the direct translation) has his own problems. He’s one of the Authors in our story and his Killing Good would be a pig whip hog bat. It’s actually used to discipline hogs and his ancestors whom Romeo inherited this from would use it to punish prisoners and then starve them to death slowly. Out of all the Authors that I’ve seen thus far, I’d have to say that that’s one of the cruelest ways to die. Slow and painful torture is not the way to go – literally. Anyway, psychology is not my strong point, but I’d have to say that Romeo’s disturbing thoughts and inner demons are some of the most dangerous and twisted I’ve seen. Reaching outside the scopes of anime even, I find that people that are so far into S&M (I’ll let you Wiki that on your own) – to the point that rape is considered acceptable, and even murder… those are the scary people you have to watch for in society. The fact is, these people are also very charismatic (similar to how Romeo is the president) and aren’t hiding but rather very much trying to blend in. It gives me the chills that so many crime dramas, TV shows and actual real life events link back to murderers like Romeo who just need help.

Aside from the crazy duo that was introduced, there were other events that took place to build up drama elsewhere. I always thought that Iwai would be the one who “fell in love” first due to the fact that Kiri pretty much gave her a new life. What more could a girl ask for? It’s proven in this episode though that Iwai hasn’t even thought about having a boyfriend… whereas Kiri was the one depressed assuming that he’s been rejected already. Not to say he has, but it’s kind of cute to see him all depressed because it shows that he thought he meant more to Iwai than… a hair cutter. Sad to say, but maybe Iwai needs to learn to be a little more sensitive in that department. Young boys have fragile hearts too, but we’ll probably see how it develops next week.

So moving along, the end of the episode was obviously a cliffhanger. There was also a sneak peek of how Gossip works (either for or against the Hair Queen, I still don’t know) and Seigi joins the fun. I still don’t see Seigi as a necessarily “evil” character, but he does have his moments which prove that he’s a force to be reckoned with. I’d love to see how Iwai wins over Kiri again and breaks him out of his “trance”.

Full-length images: This show has so many awesome full-length images! Too bad they’re mostly of women… but it’s not about me.

 

Preview

40 Comments

  1. Bananas? ^^;

    Finally a cliffhanger (they could have made it a more suspenseful cliffhanger, but I guess they don’t want to go that far :p). I was starting to wonder if this anime was going to be episodic all the way to the end after watching the first four episodes XD.

    So Iwai is in love with the pair of sissors, not the boy holding it :p. Now we know… (kidding).

    x
  2. She must’ve had a difficult life to assume that all men just want her for sex – which might be true but I’m not quick to judge. She’s also had to grow up alongside of Zaiga Romeo (Nakamura Yuuichi) whom isn’t the best friend you could ask for. If I were to analyze her thoughts even more, I would say that deep down maybe she’s just crying for attention and waiting for someone exceptional to prove her wrong. She’s more than the facade that she presents and she’s yet to meet anyone that’s tried to see past that.

    As a manga reader, I have to point out that this episode isn’t really what it seems at all. If anyone cares for major spoilers, then read on, if not, you’ve been warned

    Show Spoiler ▼

    Zen
  3. Ouch!That friendzone must’ve hurt.Well some girls can be a bit misleading at times(braces self for downvotes but you know this to be true ladies!)….or from their perspective maybe us guys are just too easily misled.

    Hmmm,if this keeps up I could see Kiri turning into Crime Edge’s version of Hachiman 😀

    MgMaster
    1. I won’t even try and deny, it’s true – women are crazy. We think one thing and do another and expect men to actually know what we’re thinking when WE don’t even know what we want.
      Or maybe that’s just me… >_>

      1. women are crazy.

        Couldn’t disagree more; don’t use pejorative terms to “fit in”, IMHO.
        I definitely see that all too often. Simply, girls are girls and that is their
        explanation, reason, and existence ♥.

        Pigeon-holing is just a way of someone else exerting power, control,
        and influence over you. If you think about it, you’ll see that’s a lonely
        place you shouldn’t want to be.

        I find that people that are so far into S&M…

        There’s a reason you feel this way; or rather that you haven’t cultured a
        taste for it in your life — this is a “good” thing, IMHO. I’m not into S&M.

        Just my ¥2.

        But, about the episode. I thought it was good writing that she indirectly
        rejects him (and crushes him) over the Crime Edge. But of course, she does
        love him but hasn’t fully made the connection between him and the Crime Edge
        in her mind (remember later she remarks that his “soul” is in the Crime Edge).

        Likin’ it so far…

        mac65
    2. OTOH Iwa was probably thinking that the only thing that Kiri was attracted to was cutting her hair, not that he was interested in her as a person. He’s just as guilty of expecting her to be a mind reader.

      Bear
    3. My impression wasn’t that Iwai was being misleading. It’s just that she was incapable of expressing her true feelings for Kiri because she didn’t really understand the whole concept of romance to begin with- she’s been cooped up in her mansion all her life so she’s simply too sheltered and naive. In other words, it’s not that she doesn’t have any romantic feelings for Kiri, it’s just that she can’t identify what she feels as romance because she doesn’t have the requisite mental maturity to do so. So she says it as she sees it, “I’ve never even thought of romance,” because her naive eyes are blind to its presence, which would be painfully obvious to more mentally mature individuals…

      Zen
      1. I was more like refering to the fact that girls are naturally misleading,whether they want to or not,and us guys get hyped up at the smallest sign of affection a girl shows towards us 😛

        I find Kiri & Iwai to be very fitting examples of this.

        MgMaster
  4. Nice episode. I liked how Kiri got friendzoned from his POV. I guess they’ll straight things out a bit later on. I kinda expected something like an enemy using a whip would appear, given that the tools seems like mudane things rather than the common murder weapons we see everyday(guns, knives, etc.)

    The Moondoggie
  5. I just don’t see why it’s necessary. I think the girls that are introduced are interesting the way they are without the added emphasis on body parts.

    Sure they could do without it but you don’t lose anything by adding some fanservice either.

    Reaching outside the scopes of anime even, I find that people that are so far into S&M (I’ll let you Wiki that on your own) – to the point that rape is considered acceptable, and even murder… those are the scary people you have to watch for in society.

    On the contrary people who are in to S&M are less likely to be dangerous since they are likely to have a better understanding of their sexual desires/preference hence more control over themselves.

    anon
    1. About the secound satament it’s the people that don’t see themselves as a sadist, think their above humanity or the fellow human, and are very charismatic that are the most terrifying. Hannibal and Muraki Kazutaka …. the latter of the two scares me more. lol

      Ani_BEE
      1. So Ani_BEE, you’re referencing to people that are either psychopaths and/or have the Dark Triad in their personalities.

        I reckon Romeo must be the first or the latter. Or even both. :S

        Cassidy
    2. I don’t necessarily think that all people have control over their sexual desires but yes, I do agree that perhaps people that “practice” (is that the appropriate words?) S&M would probably know when to stop and what’s considered foreplay still.

      Not to generalize, but I think most “bad” people are associated with this sort of play because most people that appear in the news due to these activities end up murdering someone (accidental or not). Some examples would be Paul Bernardo, Amanda Knox and Martin Vanger (who is fictional but the other two are real people!). Anyway, not to get too far into this topic (since it scares me) so I’ll stop there >_<

      1. It could also be that most people’s desires are maintained when they participate in / practice S&M, and they develop a sense of when the act is appropriate, etc. Those people who commit crimes related to those circumstances generally (1) do not have that sense or (2) have neglected to control their desires.

        Enough brain musing. I’m enjoying the series.

        Totally unrelated, but I think I spot a Canadian.

        Shinmarizu
  6. I’m actually quite pleasantly surprised with how much bolder this anime is comparing with what I initially expected it to be.
    Also, epic friendzone moment XD

    Patsuan
  7. Kiri got sent to the Friend Zone Realm!!!That was just as hard to watch as it was when I read it.We’ve all been there Kiri and we share your pain!

    My favorite Iwai hairstyle makes its debut!Ponytail Iwai is the best Iwai <3.Iwai fought back unlike most characters that have been in her position and someone ends up saving them.Cute with a side of badass, just how I like my heroines.

    The S&M scene of this episode with Ruka and Romio was even more disturbing for me as I saw it in motion.How much saliva are they generating for the whip to be covered like that? lol

    30% more badass

    Magoiichi
    1. I noticed that about Iwai as well. While she’s relatively powerless, she did fight back, got herself free and figured out pretty soon that Kiri was being controlled – and thus set off to return him to normal. She’s quite a cut (no pun intended) above your average helpless damsel in distress, and I like her better for it.

      And poor Kiri, rare you see a girl being completely dense in shows like these. A mere haircutter? Ouch, harsh.

      Dvalinn
  8. “I find that people that are so far into S&M (I’ll let you Wiki that on your own) – to the point that rape is considered acceptable, and even murder…”

    I didn’t click on the link to this review to try and right people who are wrong on the internet, nor to type some informative text wall for the ignorant, just came because I was curious about the impressions of other fans on this particular series. But, really, after THAT, I’ve gotta say something. It may well be ignored or overlooked, but it must be done.

    As a man with an active role in his local BDSM community, I must say, not only is your little observation ignorant and simple-minded, it is also highly offensive. Insofar, I have yet to meet anyone who eroticses or practices non-consensual rape (yes, you can consent to “rape”, often in a very detailed role-playing scenario) or murder. They are generally well-adjusted members of the community, who enjoy their own little quirks behind closed doors. The kindly old man who runs the local dry cleaners, the young OL who just started working at a good firm, the middle-aged “woman” that you see in the gym every so often, in other words, “good” people, those are the people involved in my local community. Not the serial killers and drug dealers and gangbangers, no, those belong to a completely different social group, and we meet on an entirely different day of the week. True, there is also the edgy young couple living in the projects downtown (who, I might add, have a heart of gold, although you sure as Oblivion wouldn’t be able to tell that by looking at them) and that one guy who always comes to the bar you frequent on his motorcycle, perhaps with a few friends, to give examples, but I’d like to think that you’ve just mistaken the “Sadist” that you’ve heard about when watching your favorite crime dramas while nestled closely to a tub of Ben & Jerrys, with the healthy “Sadist”, rather than assuming you were an ignorant vanilla little something or other.

    tl;dr – learn the difference between a Sexual Sadist (in Psychological terms) and a Sadomasochist (the cutie who wants to conceptually shove your undies in your mouth and ravage your body, or have such done to them.

    Or just continue being an ignorant, insensitive explative for all I care

    Anomalous
    1. WO there buddy… I had no intentions of being offensive. I guess you could say that being ignorant is no better but this is not necessarily common knowledge either unless I know a lot of people within this “community” as you put it.

      So I’ll apologize for not knowing better but my opinion for the episode doesn’t change. I still think Romeo is crazy and I don’t agree with his actions. Not to generalize, but I think most of my thoughts are formed because of the media and what I see portrayed in TV and news. Yes, you can also blame me for not doing my research but this is what a lot of members of society will think too. It doesn’t make it more right, but I’m just saying that you’ll find a lot of people offense for not knowing better then.

      1. … No, your right, Romeo isn’t an example of a “healthy” Sadist. Were I to guess, I’d say he has severe self-esteem issues, but I haven’t read the Manga so I can’t confirm that. Just go on with the Anime discussion, ya didn’t offend.

        *ahem* On topic…

        Ruka and Romio… Their relationship dynamic, I’m willing to bet that Ruka is the Author he is the instead, that, or the other students are authors. Just… Her character doesn’t give off an air of willing subservience, more like knowing subservience. Prolly a Switch… Yeah.

        Anomalous

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