“Freezing Point” & “Beyond Good and Evil”
I don’t think anyone in their right mind would complain about getting two Kiseijuu episodes this week, especially considering how top-notch they both were. This is quite a lengthy post since we got double the content, packed with lots to discuss and digest. I’ll be tackling the two episodes at once this time around, going through one character at a time.
First is the new badass Shinichi. Or is he? Sure, he looks awesome now, and his transformation really does show how much he has changed over the past seven episodes. I think what I enjoy most about all this is that it feels so… wrong. As interesting and proactive as he is right now, it doesn’t feel right, and I have every confidence that that was the intention. The stone faced emotionless protagonist is a character archetype that many love and hope for, but it’s not the Shinichi we knew. Regardless, it’s the Shinichi we are getting, and even if I’m intentionally unsettled by the development I am intrigued to see where his character goes from here. But I must admit, I miss the geek next door look already!
We do get confirmation of his upgraded senses and abilities that were discussed last week, and it really does seem that he is unable to cry. It’s official, he is less human than he was before, and that is not a good thing. But to watch? It’s awesome! Except from when he literally throws a dead dog in the trash.
Not. Cool. Shinichi. I am disappointed in you, son.
Thankfully, his father doesn’t feel the same. It’s painful, honestly, to see him struggling to cope after the traumatic events that happened. It’s entirely logical that he’d be affected by it, and turning to drink is his short term solution, as unhealthy as it is. But hearing him ask when his son got so strong was powerful. Whilst Shinichi is evolving (or devolving?) and adapting to the situation at hand, his father is being left behind and can’t cope. Thankfully for him – and quite surprising to see – he doesn’t bottle it up for much longer, and involves the authorities with situation with the “monster“. But it seems they are already aware of what’s going on, which adds more fuel to the fire; it really has me wondering what has gone on behind the scenes up until now…
I want bring up another thing regarding Shinichi, and that is how much he is fucking up everything he has with Murano. First the dead dog in the bin, then him unable to properly explain himself and giving a bad impression, and then after being asked two more times if he is really Izumi Shinichi, he loses it. I’m not going to lie, when he screamed at Murano to shut up I actually recoiled. Will that be the deciding moment that marks the end of Shinichi and Murano’s relationship? I certainly hope not.
I’d like to touch upon Murano in these past two episodes as well. She was quite passive for the most part, reacting to Shinichi’s strange antics until everything boiled over at the end. But before that we got a really cute flashback to her and Shinichi getting their results, chatting with one another for the first time, and hoping that they get to be in the same class. So much hope! Young love! Gone! Dead and buried!
When cutting back to what’s happening right now, it only drives the dagger further into the wound – I don’t know where Murano is going to go from here, but it’s clear that she doesn’t see Izumi as the same boy that she knew not too long ago. And she’s right! She has every right to be freaking out over what’s going on. If you put yourself in her shoes, assuming you knew nothing about what’s really going on with Shinichi, you’d be worried for and scared of him for his recent behaviour. Watching his transformation is unsettling as a viewer, so I can only imagine how Murano would feel.
Someone who is more or less embracing this new Shinichi, though, is Kana, who is one I have my eye on. It’s confirmed that she can sense parasites, as well as how she is actively trying to involve herself with Shinichi. Her reasoning? Well, she may just like him (if this moment is anything to go by) but I think she is genuinely curious about him being ‘different’ as well. I feel like she knows more than she lets on, but then I can’t be certain. What I can be certain of is that she is a gifted girl. That, and she’s becoming less involved with the other delinquents that she was around in her introduction, and I think if she sticks around for the long run, she might just end up abandoning them altogether for whatever it is about Shinichi that has caught her attention. Soulmates? Maybe. Shinichi x Murano isn’t looking so hot right now.
Quote of the Week:
“You shouldn’t mouth off when you don’t know shit.”
But there is someone else she finds herself involved with – the creepy new addition to the cast: Shimida Hideo. We see him at the start of episode 8 with Tamiya, who instructs him to become involved with the newly badass Shinichi, as Tamiya claims he is a key part in the future of their parasite species. After transferring, he goes straight up to Shinichi and they have their first confrontation. From there we see the back and forth between them, which ends with Shinichi saving the delinquents from Shimida’s bloodthirsty ways. It was certainly an interesting moment, considering how on the surface it does seems like he is saving Shimda more than anything. Little do they know…
But this Shimida character is a curious one. We know that he’s been sent here, but other than that not much is given away about what he intends to do, if it is anything else than just adapting to living a human life. He confesses to Shinichi that he hasn’t taken a human life, but his claim is contradicted not long after when he murders an innocent girl. Why? I’m not quite sure yet, but at the rate everything is going, I’m sure things will become clear fairly soon.
The last character – and the most prominent in episode 9 – is Tachikawa Yuuko. We’ve seen her as Murano’s friend in the background for the past few weeks, but she now has the focus, and it’s all surrounding the arrival of Shimida. To put it simply, she has a crush on him, initally at least. That doesn’t last long though, as she quickly sees him for who he really is, noticing early on that there is something off about him, before watching him change faces in front of her very eyes.
What I loved most here was how Tachikawa is indirectly tied to what is going on with Shinichi and his dad right now, as it turns out that her brother is the man who drew the artists’ depiction of the parasite that killed Shinichi’s mother. Slowly but surely, all the characters are connecting together, becoming more and more involved with what is going, even if they aren’t aware of it yet. But Tachikawa is certainly one that is aware of the situation, as she manages to piece everything together and come to the conclusion that Shimida is one of those body shifting monsters. She decides to confront him before telling her brother what she knows, which was not that the wisest decision, but it provided us with a tense final scene – that’s for sure. Tachikawa finds great courage and tells Shimida straight, but it doesn’t end well. Thankfully, Shinichi and Migi are aware of what’s going on, as evident by Shinichi’s newly found screaming habit.
If I were to hazard a guess, I’d say that next week is when everyone will become even more involved in what’s going on. Shinichi, Murano, Kana, Shimida, and Tachikawa are effectively all on the same spider web right now, and I suspect that next episode might see that web come crashing down. It won’t be pretty, but nothing much is with this series. I suppose that’s what makes it so enjoyable to watch every week!