It didn’t take long for Umineko to get the action going and start piling up the body count. While I expected a pretty exciting episode, I was surprised to see a third of the cast die off at once. In fact, I’m not even sure who’s dead and who’s not.
I thought Maria was much more cute this week… until she went all Higurashi eyes while reading the letter from Beatrice. As Beatrice’s new messenger, she fills the Ushiromiya family on all the details. Basically, Kinzo (grandpa) made a deal with her way back in the day. She would loan gold to the family and help them bring them back to prosperity. The catch was, once the contract between the two was over, she would get to keep everything the Ushiromiya family owned. I think this extends into the children’s assets as well, although correct me if I’m wrong. However, because Beatrice is such a fetching lady, she makes an offer to the family. If they can find her hidden gold, they get to keep their assets, including all the gold Beatrice loaned Kinzo.
The question is what’s in it for Beatrice and what’s in it for Kinzo? Based on Beatrice’s letter and Kinzo’s interaction with Jessica’s mom, it seems like he’s playing a game to see which of his children are most worthy of the family inheritance. Although I wonder if he was as heartless enough to risk killing some of them. But what’s in it for Beatrice? What’s a witch got to do with gold and material wealth? Or is she playing the game for kicks. On a separate note, the more I hear Kinzo speak, the more I think he was created for Norio Wakamoto to voice. It’s a bummer that’s not the case.
Meanwhile, while the family is trying to make heads and tails out of Beatrice’s letter, we learn that George has the hots for Shannon, and actually goes as far as proposing to her – although her decision at the time is left ambiguous. I suppose this is one of the unfortunate casualties of having rushed through character intros, because this seemed like it came out of left field, and was an obvious set up to make the final scene a little more powerful.
However, when everyone wakes up in the morning, they find that strange things are afoot. Jessica’s mom is awakened by the house staff and notified that people are missing and there are some bloody handprints on the door across from hers (apparently she may have been saved by the pendant her daughter gave her). Jessica’s mom then orders the workers to start cooking breakfast, because I guess that’s the logical response to finding out that there may be something sinister in the air.
Things take a turn for the worse, as the workers find what looks like black magic inscribings inside the shed – which is the last possible building that the missing people could be in.
And not surprisingly, the shed turns out to be the setting for a very gory scene, which unfortunately was muted by a little bit of extra darkness.
Who died? Well, Jessica’s dad did judging by her response. And unfortunately for George, Shannon as well – after having chosen to accept his proposal. :emotion:
The timing and delivery of Battler’s scream sounded really misplaced and ended up being unintentionally hilarious. Otherwise, while I expected the mystery and death to begin this episode, like I mentioned above, I was shocked to find that they chopped a third of the cast already. I don’t even know who the other four dead are. And even if you named the names, it wouldn’t mean anything to me. But with that said, I’m starting to get into this. I’m looking forward to the mystery unfolding. Who is Beatrice? And what exactly does she want? What kind of show is she and Kinzo running?