「美しい花」 (Utsukushii Hana)
In this week’s Gleipnir, being Madoka is suffering as his gang faces the wrath of Clair’s plan to poison them while they make their grand escape. While it wasn’t the most action-packed episode of the bunch, there are many significant developments that came from how the characters worked with one another.
Clair had a welcome amount of attention centered around her as we got to see how the way she operates contrasts with those around her. Madoka was able to directly point out that she’s just as devious and clever as the rest of his crew by the virtue that she was trying to figure out what conditions came from his ultimatum to have one of Koyanagi’s crew members killed to atone for the caterpillar man’s jaw being removed.
When they all have to settle with a plan, Clair is also the one to see through some of the members of Koyanagi’s crew. She picks up on Ikeuchi’s “doom-and-gloom” approach to their decision and happily tells him that he’d be a viable candidate for the one to sacrifice himself seeing as he’s eager to talk about how impossible it is to make any other move. Although this is the episode where he accidentally kills himself by trying to give away secret information under Koyanagi’s oath, Clair was able to get the crew to safety by using Isao’s power to grow plants to burn down a large number of poisonous flowers for Madoka’s crew to breathe in.
There was also a decent level of closure to the angst between Shuuichi and Clair as he lets her know that her ruthless approach to problem-solving is what makes him interested in her. He wants to be able to protect her, but at the same time, he understands more clearly that it’s her willingness to pull the trigger on tough decisions that gravitate him to having her help him strategize what to do in difficult situations. Whereas it might seem like someone similar to Shuuichi would be perfect for him, his main interest is in what makes Clair completely different in mind-and-spirit from him, creating a reassuring atmosphere for Clair to have a better chance at pulling him back into her arms.
In the meantime, there was also some light shed on Madoka and why he is as obsessed with his friends as he is for a crooked forest bandit. His old job and the loneliness he felt from it spawned the coin for him to be able to gain the power he needed to make more friends, albeit with people who prove themselves to have the same scumbag mentality as he did once he gained powers. But in spite of being an antagonist for this mini-arc, he is also dedicated to his crew to a fault as he kills more time trying to save his friends from the toxic fumes than abandon them to chase after Koyanagi’s group. It gave them ample time to leave, but whether it did any good or if Elena’s new request will bring them back to square one is still in the cards for when the next episode arrives.
I got a feeling Madoka is still alive and there might be a showdown between him and Clair & co. Most likely, his power will be weakened but he is still a formidable foe. However, with Shuuichi’s new found resolve to fight alongside Clair come what may, they might evolve into a stronger form that will eventually defeat Madoka. As for Ikeuchi’s demise, I said good riddance. For me, he was a creep with no redeeming qualities.
No one deserves death. Even if he was unlikeable his death was to harsh.
That death came from nowhere. My first thought was that he was faking it. I wouldn’t be surprised if the corresponding manga chapter had a bit more meat to what exactly happened to him.
I stand by what I said about Ikeuchi. The creep doesn’t deserved one iota of sympathy. Instead of sticking out with his team when he learned about Clair’s plan, he decided to use the information to bargain with Madoka in exchange for his life. The low-life got his just desert.
In contrast, I’m impressed with Clair’s resourcefulness and her ability to think in a difficult situation.Not only that, she is willing to make tough decisions even if it means bearing all the pain that comes with it. With each life taken ,no matter what the justifications are, a part of you dies along with it.I used to think that she was a crazed, manipulative psychopath but now seeing her in a different light, I’m starting to like her alot.
As a side note, the echiiness has toned down a bit in recent episodes. Although its one of reasons why I’m watching the show, I guess its a good thing. At least, it saves me a few nose bleeds.
Not defending him but saying he deserved to die just ensues you sound like psychopath.
With all the death going on right now we do not need more people saying someone should die.
Tadanori missed his chance to face off against some real monsters by not accompanying them.
I agree (mostly) about Claire. I don’t think she was ever psychotic in any sense of the word, but she’s developing into a great character. She’s really found an outlet for her talents and an emotional anchor in Shuuichi (which is kind of ironic in that he sort of blows with the wind). She still makes mistakes but she’s the type who grows stronger in a crisis.
Were Sayaka’s words to Claire parting words? Will the gang manage to stick together? How much was Sayaka affected by what happened? She almost led her gang to its near certain demise. The flower guy looked traumatised by his own actions. Miku meanwhile decided to become a murderer (with the understanding that she would probably die herself afterward). Chihiro probably just wants to pursue and become one with Shuuichi. Will they even want to venture back into the mountains again?
I get the feeling with this show that they don’t play games with what happens off-screen. While he served well as an evil villain, neither Madoka nor his followers were especially deep characters so I don’t think his survival and return improves the story any. Besides, I think we’ve already gotten a taste of their next encounter.