「機密事項六二〇カムナガラ」 (Kimitsu Jikō Roku Ni Maru Kamu Nagara)
“Confidential File 620: Divine Right”
Miss Simplice’s Review
Jouran: The Princess of Snow and Blood is losing a bit of its grip. It was interesting in the beginning, especially with that beautiful opening sequence where we first saw Sawa face a changeling. Japan’s politics and its alternate history Tokyo were also at the forefront of why I wanted so badly to like this show. And lastly, Sawa’s supernatural abilities were another reason.
It’s only normal that once the Janome arc ended we hit a transitional episode but there’s something about the pacing of the show that isn’t setting up viewer expectations just right. But that out of the way, I do want to focus on the events in this episode.
The entire thing basically acted as a plot tool. One, it served to remove a secondary character who wasn’t the most interesting of personalities. I wasn’t very attached to Hanakaze and wasn’t very sympathetic to her cause. Even with her desire to have a different future, raising a child, and providing happiness for her partner, my emotions didn’t sway at her loss. This is why I believe that the true reason for this episode was to set up this second point. It set record straight about being a Nue member. Even with Sawa’s goal achieved, her role within the organization isn’t and never has been on an opt-in, opt-out basis.
However, she’s officially shaken by the loss of her brother, incapacitating her abilties or drive to support Nue’s missions. The memories she’s accumulated after years of slaying people without a second thought are catching up to her. The young traumatic girl she was when she lost her family, who was repressed deep within her psyche, is clawing her way out of the dark hole. And whenever that young torture soul emerges, the Sawa we know freezes, panics, and regresses. You could say she’s on a path towards healing but it can only get worse before it gets better which is what we’re witnessing. Am I wrong to assume she tried to cut her own throat after saving Hanakaze?
There is no Princess of Snow and Blood without Sawa, so I assume (like I hope many of you do) that Makoto’s poison isn’t lethal which has me questioning who they’re really loyal to. I am curious to see how this series progresses but there’s a chance I’ll leave the rest of the coverage with Princess Usagi in coming weeks. I haven’t decided yet but will let you know.
Princess Usagi Review
This episode is filled with whys. Sawa questions why she survives and why her crow, Nana, has chosen her. Hanakaze questions why she of all people has to get pregnant. We the viewers question why they have to kill off most of the MCs.
The central theme of this episode was that motherhood is passing on the care one has received (not necessarily from one’s own mother, but from siblings or other guardian figures) onto the next generation. The love Sawa received from her brother and the protection from Kuzuhara (although it was more for Nue’s benefit than her own) is now passed on to Asahi as she acts as a mother or older sister to her. Sawa asks why her crow chose to be her companion-the answer to that may be that the crow chose her to watch over Sawa as she lives through the beautiful cycle of life-of learning how to be protected and loved to then pass that on to another. We aren’t told anything about Hanakaze’s backstory, but we do see her embracing motherhood in keeping the child and rearranging her life to make room for the new addition.
The way the two women approach motherhood is very different from one another. After the completion of revenge Sawa is floundering, lost in the trauma of her brother’s death. At the same time, she wants to look out for Asahi and finds new meaning in life through her. When her request to leave Nue is denied, she doesn’t actively fight it and allows herself to be dragged along by Hanakaze for one last showdown. In contrast, upon finding out she is pregnant, Hanakaze determines to settle into a new life right away and leave Nue, which on the surface, appears to be granted. In the farewell fight, Hanakaze actively slashes through their opponents, while Sawa remains crippled by haunting memories, unable to make a move until Hanakaze’s life is in danger.
Upon seeing Hanakaze’s strength in facing these life changes head-on, Sawa seems inspired to become more active in embracing the changes in her own life. However, this newfound resolve appears to die, like Hanakaze and her lover in the aftermath of the tragic “accident”. Sawa is trapped in Nue’s cage. The freedom with which her crow flies through the air represents the freedom Sawa longs for and which she mistakenly thought revenge could grant. Tsukishiro, for whatever reason, also wishes to free her from this cage. For Tsukishiro, not revenge, but death is the key- explaining why he/she gave Asahi the poison that would free Sawa forever.
At episode 5, they have now already killed off most of the MCs. And I thought Janome’s death in the last episode was confusing-that was nothing compared to my bewilderment after seeing Sawa ingest poison. Where are the writers taking this story? Is Sawa really dead or will she somehow survive the poisoning? If she dies will Asahi take over as the new MC and seek to take down Nue? Although, given the death rate of the past few episodes, they may also just kill Asahi off in the next episode as well. The only one who seems to survive is Kuzuhara.