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Mayonaka no Occult Koumuin – 07 »« Mayonaka no Occult Koumuin – 05

Mayonaka no Occult Koumuin – 06

「悪魔と喪失感」 (Akuma to Soushitsukan)
“Devil and Sense of Loss”

This time around, Arata fell very much to the wayside as it is Sakaki who took center stage, what with him finally finding a solid lead regarding his older sister’s disappearance. In order to further his progress, he actively put Arata in danger by asking him to convince Kohaku to meet with Sakaki so he could ask Huehuecoytl questions about the Another he’d borrowed the kidnapped girls in Toyama Park from. Thos girls, the ones who were used in Kohaku’s zombie ritual, have started waking up, and none of them have aged at all since they were taken, which means it’s possible that Sakaki’s sister is still alive after having been missing for so many years. Of course, whether that’s for the best is up for debate, since the brooding dark-haired Another with pale skin and black sand has been stealing their abilities in what seems to be an attempt to recreate a lost love…

And did I mention he has a three-headed dog?

What a time it is to be alive when Greek mythological gods and heroes are being reimagined as youkai in a series about civil servants. Seeing Pandora should have been a big enough hint that someone like Hades could be making an appearance – all the myths are real, after all – but I guess I just figured the Lord of the Underworld would have a tough time fitting mucking about in the mortal realm on his busy schedule. Actually, according to the legends, Hades was probably the least likely god to interfere in the affairs of men and by far the most reasonable when it came to making deals. This could mean that he would be open to speaking with Arata, but as this episode established, would that actually be a good thing?

Up until this point, Arata has been a passive protagonist. The difference between a passive protagonist and an active one is that while things happen to the former, the latter makes things happen, propelling the story forward and affecting change in those around them. Although he’s at the center of the narrative, Kohaku’s decision to tell Hades about Arata’s childhood friend was entirely unrelated to Arata himself. It came across as impersonal, Kohaku’s way of paying off the favor he owed Hades for letting him borrow those kidnapped girls. However, while I will admit Arata getting tossed around like a leaf on the wind has run its course, I will applaud this series for sticking to its guns. Usually, by now, Kohaku would have been tamed on some level, or else developed a sense of understandable morality, but he’s still the same amoral, fickle god he was at the beginning, even if he does like to lounge around Arata’s house in loose-fitting clothes and play with the nekomata.

Now all that brings me to one final question – Why does Arata have the Ears of Sand? If Seo is right and negotiating with the Anothers is impossible, then what purpose does Arata being able to speak their language serve? I’d like for this series to give Arata more chances to use his abilities to find solutions, which he’s undoubtedly taken a step in doing, ironically, by ignoring what Seo told him and confronting Kohaku after his friend’s kidnapping. Whether this proves to be more of a blessing or a curse, though, we’ll just have to wait and see. After all, just because Seimei was Kohaku’s friend in a past life, doesn’t mean the Coyote isn’t a trickster.

 

Preview

May 14, 2019 at 3:24 am
8 comments »
  • May 14, 2019 at 4:45 amSandub

    I love it is one of the best animes that e seen contains everything

    • May 15, 2019 at 7:55 pmStars

      I’m happy to hear that! It’s been pretty enjoyable for me, too XD

  • May 14, 2019 at 5:54 amAex

    Here’s hoping that Arata is about to prove to Seo that it isn’t that Anothers can’t be reasoned with, it’s just that they are like people: some can, and some can’t. Pandora was a spoiled brat who wouldn’t even listen to her own parents, Kohaku is just bored from having seen everything, and drunk-god was too lazy to care about other people. Easy enough to find these types of humans in life, too. Not being able to really reason with them seems to have less to do with species and more with personality.

    Everyone’s had to rely on the sweeping generalization that Anothers are impossible to reason with up to now because it’s been literally impossible to understand Anothers, so of course they can’t reason with them. It’s getting a little annoying with Seo and Sakaki telling Arata what he is and isn’t capable of, though, when they really have no idea. They don’t want him to get hurt, sure, but they have no idea what talking to an Another means. Even the part where you shouldn’t negotiate with them is based off of entirely one-sided information.

    I’m really hoping that Arata steps up at some point and helps them figure out that starting with the assumption that they’ll never understand each other is just the easy way out. Having someone with such a game-changing ability be such a doormat for the whole season would be a serious waste.

    • May 14, 2019 at 6:05 amAex

      But of course, this is all based on the assumption that there aren’t other Sand of Ears people currently walking around and relaying info. Though if that’s why Seo and Sakaki think the way they do, they really should’ve mentioned it sooner.

    • May 15, 2019 at 8:06 pmStars

      That’s a very insightful interpretation. After all, the tengu and angels from the first episode did listen to Arata.

      Since that “You can’t negotiate with Anothers” quote has been repeated so often, it does seem to be setting Arata up to disprove that statement. As for there being other Ears of Sand, it would quite a surprise if that turned out to be the case, but it’s certainly not out of the realm of possibility

      • May 15, 2019 at 10:47 pmGuardian Enzo

        I get that point – certainly not all Anothers are the same – but that wasn’t my takeaway from this episode. For the most part I think Seo’s admonition is on the money. What these Anothers (the Shinjuku shrine Kami, Pandora, Coyote) have in common is a complete lack of empathy for humans. It’s not that they’re acting out of evil per se (though Kohaku comes pretty close at times) but they simply can’t grasp the concept that the welfare or desires of humans should have the tiniest relevance to them. And that makes them incredibly dangerous if not impossible to negotiate with.

  • May 16, 2019 at 3:46 amOminae

    This is certainly an interesting take on a show/concept where the supernatural is being policed/investigated by using bureaucrats instead of relying on the police, military or an intelligence agency.

  • May 16, 2019 at 12:43 pmjhpace1

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