「メメント·モリ」 (Memento Mori)
Chiyuki is in the spotlight this week as Decim transforms his bar into a skating rink to help her regain her memories. She finds her old outfit and skates in her closet and as she skates around, she remembers her life. Her inspiration came from the Chavvot book and as she watched real performances, Chiyuki wanted to become a professional skater. And she did. She won competitions, had a lot of friends and support from her family. Chiyuki was living the perfect life… until she suffered a knee injury which resulted in her inability to ever skate again. Ultimately, she committed suicide and ended up where she is today. The story of her life was actually more straightforward than I would’ve liked. It’s not unique to the world of Death Parade and I find it rather anticlimactic considering all the build-up for this special woman who can remember her death. Nevertheless, the story of how we got here is a sad one because Chiyuki died believing that people around her didn’t understand her. It’s ironic because she shouted the same words to Decim just a few episodes ago. I don’t necessarily believe that it was one thing that caused her suicide, but a multitude of different emotions she was feeling. Depression from being unable to fulfill her goals in life was the major contributor and the feeling of loneliness in the world can be a huge weight on your shoulders. I’ve definitely experienced the same emotions before – feeling alone with nobody around you that truly understands what you’re going through… and you become very internally focused because nothing else matters at that point. It’s a struggle and when it becomes too much, some people can’t handle it anymore. I don’t claim to know or understand Chiyuki’s POV or others out there that suffer the same fate, but unlike Chiyuki, I don’t think empathy is wrong or bad; especially in this case when you need it.
What was interesting to me this episode was seeing Decim’s take on judging others after his 180 degree turn on the perspective of human emotions. He takes a different approach by trying to bring back Chiyuki’s memories through encouragement and actually giving her a setting which she’s comfortable in. I mentioned it already but I find it ironic that Decim and Chiyuki are actually quite similar even though Chiyuki didn’t realize it. She didn’t believe that someone could truly empathize with someone else and people just don’t understand the pains of one another. On the other hand, she’s the person that helped Decim realize that human emotions are a fragile aspect of being human and life is not born for the sake of just dying. Decim is now trying to understand humans a little more before judging them and hopefully with a bit of empathy. The explanation which he gave Chiyuki was a simple one, yet straight to the point and I think it sums up their relationship well. Having met one another, Chiyuki finally has someone that wants to reach out to her and understand her pains and problems… whereas Decim knows more about what it’s like to be human with human emotions. It’s all so subtle, yet well done and although the episode isn’t filled with action and intense resolutions, I think it did a great job developing the cast.
On the other end of purgatory, we have Ginti who finally sent Mayu somewhere – and by somewhere, I mean the void. I believe the intentions of this episode are to demonstrate how different Ginti and Decim are as arbiters and how human emotions come into play. I’m not sure why Ginti couldn’t have judged Mayu previously, but he decides to make a decision based on her reactions today. He poses a question to her – whether or not she’d give up a stranger’s soul in exchange to pull Haruda’s out of the void. To which we never really know her answer, but I think Ginti takes it as a yes because he ultimately sends her into the void along with Haruda’s mannequin. This shows what a long way Decim has come in comparison to Ginti that still forces his participants to pick between two extremes. It’s clearly not the best way to judge someone and you can see the struggle on Mayu’s face when she’s forced to pick one or another. Does that mean she deserves to be sent to the void for picking Haruda over a stranger? I don’t think so… I think it just shows how devoted she is to him, but she’s not wrong for making a choice when she’s forced to make a choice. Anyway, I’m sad to see Mayu go and under such circumstances that weren’t called for. Ginti gave a quick explanation of what it’s like for a soul to be in the void and although it’s not the “hell” that I imagined, I can’t fathom how it must feel to be in a state of eternal emptiness.
Bottom Line – @RCCherrie: So I find Chiyuki’s past anticlimactic compared to the other guests. I don’t understand what makes her so special. Surprised to see the end of Mayu and Ginti’s relationship. Thought they were a memorable duo. #DeathParade #dp_anime