「モスクワは涙を信じない」 (Mosukuwa wa Namida wo Shinjinai)
“Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears”
I’m going to continue calling Sloan and Varona, Sloan and Varona, because that’s how the subs have it, Cryllic is alien to me, and one can do worse than a phonetic rendering. If this annoys anyone particularly aggravatingly, let me know.
So the plot is a bit thin this week, as is the animation budget (seriously, we’re almost at flipbook level this episode), as we step back a bit to give some development for our newly introduced characters. First on our list is Varona, and with her the other Russians (and more besides) who seem to be flocking to Ikebukuro. Turns out, they do all know each other. Before Dennis and Simon found their calling in sushi, they trained Varona in the ways of violence, though before that she was already starring in her own M-rated Home Alone spinoff. Supposedly her disposition for violent murder comes from her daddy issues (isn’t it always daddy issues?) and a thrill-seeking nihilism. Alternatively, she’s picked up too many strange ideas from reading too much. That’s a new one; it’s not violent videogames that turn kids into murderers, it’s books. Run that story, hysterical media.
The rest of the subplot is basically just crazy Russians hunting crazy Russians, and the details behind that are a bit sketchier. Varona has supposedly gone rogue and stolen away with some inappropriate weapons, but reasons are unknown. Surely she didn’t come all the way to Japan just to pick a fight with a dullahan for some shady businessman. And I’m still not sure why she went after Anri. There’s little reason for anyone to attack Anri unless they knew she hosted Saika, and how many people are privy to that secret? Well, there’s that Izaya guy for starters, and his potential involvement already makes the whole affair stink. Well at least Varona has done no real harm thus far (except to Celty’s poor helmet, too good for this sinful earth). Bullets, even big scary ones, just aren’t good enough in Ikebukuro. I don’t know why everyone’s making such a big deal about the anti-materiel rifle. Guns are useless.
Watching Russians kill people (or fail to kill people) is all good fun, but there’s also that other subplot we have to worry about, namely the one with Mikado in it. It’s definitely the weaker one, perhaps because Mikado hasn’t really done anything other than mope around and contemplate his navel. And, just like last week, it’s painful watching him be so impressionable. I expect Mikado to wise up at some point, but until then the sharks are circling and he’s bleeding into the water. It’s feeding time in there.
That development is unlikely to come too quickly, because it looks like next week’s episode is about Rokujou Chikage and whatever he’s been plotting. That could be interesting, but right now I’m more concerned about whether the animation is going to make a recovery. Hopefully it’s just a production hiccup this week, or they’re saving their best work for something more epic down the line. If we continue to go downhill from here, it might be a cause for concern. Pretty animation has never been Durarara!!‘s strongest suit, but I’d still like to get to the final episode and have some semblance of motion remaining. I’m not asking for much. Come on, Durarara!!. You can do it.
Full-length images: 21.