Upon releasing Kiki Asukai, her subconsciousness seeps into the surrounding world, plunging the people in Kura’s building into her nightmarish death dreams. The scene was extremely beautiful and evoked shades of Shin Sekai Yori for me – specifically where Shun is unable to control the power of his cantus, which seeps out and distorts the world around him. Simply beautiful, the way that this effortless destruction is juxtaposed upon reluctance and despair.
Fukuda goes down, and it’s hard not to have mixed feelings about it. He was a serial killer that lacked remorse. But it must be highlighted that it was not through his own volition, having been shunted into the role as a result of Hayaseura’s intervention – and his reasons do not come from drilling holes in other people’s head for the sheer sadistic fun. That was the way he saw the world around him, that people were incomplete without those holes in their heads, and merely sought out a kindred spirit who would elect to create said hole for themselves – which he ultimately found in Hondomachi. I hope he hasn’t died – though the ending of the series didn’t exactly make his fate clear.
Following on, Hayaseura shoots Narihisago, followed by himself. Why? So that his consciousness can merge with the Mizuhanome – where his soul can continue to exist in that other world, as a vigilante striking down serial killers. Narihisago did incite serial killers to commit suicide. But his actions seem like small fry compared to Hayaseura, and Light Yagami with whom I drew a comparison earlier on in this show’s run, when it comes to taking justice into one’s own hands. If anyone has the grand plan, and egotistical god complex to boot, Hayaseura fits the bill. (Warning: Long Wall of Text Below)
That said, an end goal of creating the perfect crime prevention system? You could say that this setup could make a fascinating prequel premise for Psycho-Pass – regarding how the Sybil System came into being, only this is ID Invaded and we’re talking about the Mizuhanome here. Someone should send this concept to Production IG’s HQ – it’s really not a bad idea, considering how they’re still looking to milk the Psycho-Pass franchise. Nevertheless, it should only be fair to distinguish these two franchises on their merits.
ID Invaded did an even more incredible task when it came to presenting a moral dilemma to the fore. Every fiber of my being screamed out in disagreement at an idea which I would probably feel more sympathetic to on paper. Seeing the loss and sacrifices play out on the screen is far more real, than playing around with statistics and modelling. It’s just too cruel to sacrifice an individual in Kiki Asukai like that – suffering the eternal torment of experiencing brutal torture and death at the hands of serial killers across the world.
And I suppose this series made a really good case against uncompromising utilitarianism. Were the tragic deaths of these serial killers victims, and lives ruined like Narihisago and Kiki, worth the goal of preventing serial killers from ever existing again? Seeing it play out on screen hammered it home to me. And that’s not even bringing into question John Walker’s questionable motives, considering Chief Hayaseura sadistically killed Kiki Asukai in her dreams. Even if he claims he never committed a crime in the real world, it’s like an online pedophile claiming they never hurt any kids because they never interacted with said kid in the real world. Can you still trust someone like that?
Humans are fallible, and I personally would never trust any individual with that kind of power, even if they start off with benevolent intentions. And Hayaseura’s intentions were anything but benevolent in the first place – with his grand schemes being a twisted way of satiating his god complex. However, I find it difficult to reconcile my own hypocrisy – in which I find myself being more sympathetic towards Light, while being more judgmental towards Hayaseura. But I guess that’s the beauty of narratives, and the ways in which theycan evoke conflicting reactions or ideas based on how they’re constructed.
Fortunately, Narihisago is able to exact his revenge on John Walker (who was arguably a direct factor in his family’s death) with assistance from Hondomachi and Fukuda. By seating Hayaseura into an ID Well cockpit replica in Fukuda’s well, they trap him and proceed to log him out – and the world should remain safe as long as someone doesn’t re-dive into Fukuda’s ID Well to reactivate John Walker. Also, Momoki steps up to save the day. Pushing through an impossible situation pumped full of drugs, passing in and out between consciousness, he eventually finds Kiki. By refusing to kill her, and exhibiting his utmost empathy, he convinces her to return to her eternal nightmares of being murdered – and you could see the decision really broke him. He didn’t want to force her to return, but he didn’t want to kill her either as a form of release. Considering he had a horrific near-death experience prior to confronting her, knew how bad it was, and persuaded Kiki into returning to a simulation where she repeatedly dies, that kind of rubbed me the wrong way – not that I couldn’t see where he was coming from.
In a sense, I felt like she was coerced into that ‘choice’ by this illusion of a greater good. I strongly believe that euthanising her would have been the most humane choice, and it’s what I would have done – because even if she survives this experience, she’ll carry the scars and trauma forever. And shady organisations/governments would definitely be looking to kidnap and conduct experiments on her, potentially causing greater harm to the world in the process. But I can’t really argue against the message of hope that ID Invaded tried to bring home. Just as Narihisago gets his fragment of hope too, that he can someday return to his family in the Mizuhanome (plug his consciousness into the system like John Walker to live out all eternity with his beloved family), only that time has yet to come while he can still save people and fight crime.
While I could see ways in which a second season could be brought about, I would rather that they leave it here. There is a good balance of answers and questions – with enough material left for viewers to fill in the gaps, and it’s hard to justify messing with all that good stuff by throwing a sequel into the works. So that’s my take on the subject. Anyway, that’s about everything I wanted to discuss. Apologies for the delays – Covid, new job, spring previews, etc. But as always, thanks for reading this post and following to the very end of this journey – which I hope you enjoyed as much as I did.