「動くな、死ね、甦れ！ We know exactly how you think and how you’re fighting !」 (Ugoku na, Shine, Yomigaere!)
“Freeze, Die, Come to Life! We know exactly how you think and how you’re fighting !”
Oh boy, where do I even begin this week? In what was by far Re:Creators’ best episode to date, we not only got some serious answers, but even more questions, several important developments, and foreshadowing of greater things to come. It was a cornucopia of shock and awe, complete of course with a little Magane fourth wall breaking, because nothing says complete like batsh*t crazy.
Ignoring the Magane angle for a moment, the two critical pieces for me here were Celestia and Altair. We finally have confirmation creation updates are possible, and do work as liberally stated through popularity. Takashi posts Celestia’s improved form on the internet, the crowd goes wild, and suddenly we have a flaming Excalibur. Besides the slight absurdity of social media reacting that much that fast, it’s quite interesting how the effect is temporary. Once the Twitter rush turns into a trickle, Celestia reverts to form. This effectively proves character changes not only need popularity, but continuous popularity. For Celestia to own her new powers, they must be enshrined in the collective conscious, such as through an official story release. As the social media post was largely inquisitive (i.e. broaching a potential change) the audience only took it as an idea—they briefly imagined it, and once distracted, collectively discarded it. We will certainly see more character revisions moving forward given the concept’s proven validity, but I anticipate the focus will shift to making any change permanent. Except a serious Celestia story update in the near future.
Altair’s appearance meanwhile overturns the apple cart by throwing open (again) the idea of world destruction. Her new powers for one seriously the raise the question of character control, while her fragmentation calls into doubt the simplicity of universal annihilation. This fascinates me because it appears Altair can control character destruction. Since our military princess also determines creation materialization, each “existing” creation therefore depends on Altair for their “existence”. She basically functions as a conduit supplying power all materialized creations, which is in part the reason why only Altair is targeted once world collision reaches a critical point. If true there’s obviously more to it than this (ex. why everyone else doesn’t fragment alongside Altair), but at the minimum the scene indicates Altair’s scheme requires something else to work. I honestly don’t know what it could be, but betting on it involving character revisions—particularly permanent revisions a la future Celestia—is not a bad idea. Souta still lacks a role after all and also has the wonderful distinction of being Altair’s second creator. Wouldn’t take long for Altair to find a use for the kid should such an idea prove correct.
And if things weren’t good enough already, we also have Magane for dessert. No matter one’s opinions on miss shark teeth, I think it’s clear now she is set up to be the final boss. Besides showing Yuuya what happens when you talk dirty to her, Magane can also apparently steal abilities from other creations. Ignoring whether Magane’s power in this case is limited to accompanying spirits and such—I’m guessing it is for “OP as f*ck” reasons—it shows another potential way to rewrite characters. With two double negative statements, Magane has both prevented Yuuya from ever harming her, and ripped half his core character away, all without needing to consult the fans. While certainly limited to what Magane can steal with her power, this means at minimum miss crazy can update/augment her own abilities at will. It will be incredibly interesting to see what the limits of this are, because every character has special abilities, especially Altair. If you thought Altair was ridiculous with that disintegration power, imagine it in the hands of our Miracle Maid. I don’t know if I can get more excited.
So with Re:Creator’s first act now complete—thanks Magane—we are apparently all set for some serious fun and games. Celestia’s fate is unknown thanks to one gaping hole, Meteora has finally learned the lance is mightier than the mouth, and Souta, bless his heart, has found his inner strength. No denying Mamika’s death has catalyzed a significant shift in Re:Creators’ plot, one whose outcome is very much up in the air. After all, with Alice also a ticking time bomb and Magane a legitimate threat to both sides, there’s no indication who—if anyone—will come out on top here. All we can do is await next week to learn a little bit more. Boy do I ever wish that Saturdays came in pairs.
Magane was not lying regarding the history of Hangaku. She was a famous samurai at the inception of the Kamakura Shogunate, serving as a commander during the Kennin Uprising before being wounded and captured. Funnily enough, however, she lived and ended up happily married with a daughter. Joan d’Arc definitely would have been jealous.