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Golden Kamuy – 12 (END) »« Golden Kamuy – 10

Golden Kamuy – 11

「殺人ホテルだよ全員集合!!」 (Satsujin hoteruda yo Zen’in Shuugou! !)
“Everybody Get in Here, It’s a Murder Hotel!!”

Back around the late 16th century, there was a Hungarian countess by the name of Elizabeth Báthory. Maybe you’ve heard of her? Of course you’ve heard of her, and if you’re blanking on the name you’re probably at least are familiar with her story. Unlike other (in)famous historical figures, Elizabeth Báthory is not remembered by being a great conqueror or influential statesman. No, she was a serial killer. What she would do was, she would lure young girls to her estate — first peasant girls looking for work, and later noblewomen attending her court — and then torture and kill them. Yeah. Not a pleasant story, by any stretch, but it did capture the popular imagination at the time, eventually becoming one of the inspirations for another bloodthirsty Transylvanian noble, Count Dracula. Of course, the Countess was not a vampire of any sort, but that didn’t stop her contemporaries from running wild with the idea. Later accounts would tell of a monstrous witch who would bathe in the blood of virgins in order to maintain her youth. There’s no contemporaneous verification of those claims and no proof that the Elizabeth Báthory was much more than a sadistic murderer, but who can fault those embellishments? They’re fun. Hansel and Gretel could have been a simpler tale about child abuse and stranger danger, but a witch who lures kids to her home to eat them is much more exciting. There’s is something about these gory details that draw us to these stories, where we can savour the horror still safe in our beds.

Golden Kamuy, being fiction, obviously has much more room for embellishment, and so we have an episode that ramps up the ‘fun’. Never before has Golden Kamuy used an exclamation mark for its episode titles and perhaps it never will again, but for this week we have two. They’re serious about that hype. And indeed, this was the most over-the-top of all of Golden Kamuy, in plenty of good ways. The dark heart of humanity is a familiar topic for Golden Kamuy, but where plumbing the abyss is usually a disturbing journey (like with our previous arc), here we have an almost vaudeville horror. Sure, the entire premise is still spine-crawling, but there is a comic edge to the entire thing that almost borders satire. The penny-dreadful setting of an old hotel that’s secretly a death trap where guests are murdered one by one makes for an effective spook by the campfire, but in Golden Kamuy it turns out our cast is just too badass to care. In fact, our would-be murderer, while an inhumane, unrepentant psychopath cuts an almost sympathetic figure just because his plans fall apart so very spectacularly in the face pure testosterone. Crossdresser whose name I can’t remember, you were a horrible person who will fall straight to hell. But you got no respect while still giving us great explosions, so I feel sorry for you.

Still dark, still Golden Kamuy, but huge fun. Definitely one of most entertaining episodes we’ve had so far, in my opinion. But it’s not the kind of episode I’d expect considering how far we are in the series, at the 11th hour. I was expecting a serious, dramatic arc to close out the season, but we’re still here having our fun without much care for how close we are to curtain call. I can’t really see how Golden Kamuy is going to wrap everything up in just one episode, and perhaps it doesn’t intend to. That means we might get an inconclusive ending, but it also means we’re probably getting a second season. That’d be good news.

June 19, 2018 at 9:20 am
  • June 19, 2018 at 3:35 pmboingman

    Oh, are we sure that he, voiced by the great Ohara Sayaka, is dead?
    The humour alone was m-rated. I enjoyed it a lot.

  • June 19, 2018 at 4:38 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    God the screen caps are hilarious for this show!!! If i knew how to attach them i woukd highlight the one where shes looking at the plate of food, looking like a GOBLIN and the one that she appears to be trying to RIP that goddamn steel plate or whatever it is from dat dudes forehead, hahahahahahahaha!

    I know its much more..but i get this “gimmick” anime vibe from this show, similar to how pumpkin sissors was imo

  • June 19, 2018 at 8:20 pmGuile

    That smash cut of Shiraishi remembering this wizened older man and then saying ‘I didn’t notice because of the way he did his makeup, but-’

    I could only shout ‘BULLSHIT’, out loud, in an empty room.

  • June 19, 2018 at 11:27 pmNork22

    No mention of dicks?

  • June 20, 2018 at 3:13 amewok40k

    damn that was fun…
    there is something about mixing horror and comedy and boy between Asirpa mentioning dicks, Ushiyama chasing a trap and Shiraishi somehow surviving everything the murder hotel throws at him we had enogh of both…
    that probably adds one more skin to the stash of the Shinsengumi faction
    only few unclaimed skins left now, right?
    (Team Asirpa has 4 now, with dead drunkard eaten by bear, bear hunter, previous psycho serial killer, and Shiraishi’s own copied, Shinsengunmi has at least 3 between the trap doctor, Hijikata and Ushiyama… and it seems rebelious 7th division elements have at least 2)
    And once all skins will have been found it will be time to confront all the major factions!

  • June 20, 2018 at 5:37 amA.Gui

    I think this is in the wrong section. It’s listed under Golden Time.

    • June 20, 2018 at 9:19 amPasserby

      Whoops, wrong gold show. Fixed!