「霧の窪地」 (Kiri no kubochi)
I’m not really sure what to make of what’s going on here. I don’t really buy the Mayor’s “us and them” kind of story with the werewolves, it seems almost scripted, as I’ve probably mentioned before. At the same time, we have Alma’s werewolf transformation and the villagers fire-brandishing gang that corroborates the mayor’s story/attitude. Though the timing of the transformation and fire-brandishing could also be staged.
Some things definitely don’t make sense. One of the most glaring examples is Louise- she’s heralded as the saving hope of the town for outing the werewolves, yet, as Aya points out, Louise appeared to have been often left to her own devices, rather than cared for, judging from the usage patterns (or lack thereof) on her wheelchair. Despite Louise’s supposed hostility towards werewolves (and ability to detect them), she had a special connection with Alma, enough that Alma would mistake her as her child and Louise would venture out on her own to visit her. Even stranger, in the flashbacks, Jutte and Alma look awfully alike, suggesting some sort of blood relationship between them, perhaps.
Exhibit B of inconsistency: according to the Mayor, you can’t make werewolves- they can only be bred and born. But from Alma, it sounds as if she suddenly became a werewolf one day, a few months ago. Personally, I’m more inclined to believe the actual werewolf, though if they’re all in cahoots together and putting on a giant farce for the detectives, they’d better get their story straight.
Louise is paraded as a hero for discovering the werewolves by using a floral scent to un-hide them. Interestingly, I didn’t observe an abundance of flowers in any of the investigated parties’ houses. Now, if I were as fearful as werewolves as they seem to be, I would be damn sure to decorate my house profusely with those flowers so I wouldn’t be caught unawares by one. Another big clue here is the treat thing Tsugaru tried to eat at Heinemann’s house. It was too hard for Tsugaru to bite into- methinks the perfect treat for sharp wolf teeth.
As much as the mayor goes on about werewolves’ select breeding methods, implying male werewolves, we haven’t actually heard anything concrete about male werewolves- they seem to be all women. Strangely too, the majority of the village is made up of men- the women, like Alma, being a werewolf, or like the girls, being eaten by werewolves. Take from all of these odd coincidences what you will and form your own conclusions, but it’s pretty clear something unusual is happening here.
Make way supernatural trio, the new sheriff is in town. These new Royce team, Kyle Chaintail (Nozawa Soh) and Alice Rapidshot (Asai Ayaka) (kind of surprised they didn’t go for an Annie Oakley/Buffalo Bill kind of naming reference here) are more bombastic than the first set in London. From their names alone, we can probably get a good idea of what their special abilities will be. My one complaint would be that the character designs were too uncomfortably stereotyped in some ways for my tastes, though that’s nothing new where anime is concerned. Thankfully for everyone else, the pair is willing to listen to reason and come to an agreement with Aya (an agreement that is probably B.S.) after turning Heinemenn’s house into a Wild West saloon gunfight scene.
Whoever the wolf is, it’s on the loose. As the mayor noted, it’s resistant to silver bullets and it puts up a pretty good fight against Tsugaru. The big cliffhanger moment comes when Shizuku dives after Aya to rescue her from the waterfall, getting thrown into the depths instead. Why would Shizuku dive after Aya? Aya’s immortal, so a trip down the waterfall isn’t going to hurt her, but it will hurt Shizuku, unless she has some sort of powers that haven’t been revealed yet. The lovers’ bond between the two is quite strong, that Shizuku would go to such lengths and you can even hear the pain in Aya’s normally sardonic voice. I hope for their sakes (and ours) that Shizuku has a miraculous Sherlock Holmes style near death escape.