I’ve gotta say, it’s nice to type in regular English. Just when I get the hang of explaining the murders (pretty easy this time around), they go and change the game up completely. But does this potentially final checkmate get us closer to the truth?
With Gaap having stolen Virgilia’s goat butlers, the imprisoned make a break for it, with Kanon’s di-sword paving the way. It was interesting to see Virgilia losing her cool for a moment. That’s not a scene I would’ve expect to have seen. But she decides to take her anger at Gaap out on the escapees, and sends the Siestas to finish the job.
Meanwhile, George and Jessica’s short-lived upper hand comes to a disastrous end when Gaap creates a couple portals that sends them hurdling each other at full force with disastrous results for both. However- don’t believe your eyes here. Besides the obviously out of place portals, the injuries Jessica suffered (getting half her head blown off) and George suffered (getting a hole blasted through his stomach), are much more likely results from a shot from a Winchester than any sort of maximum power karate moves. Is there anything from this scene that we can believe? I do believe George was engaged in a confrontation. Fists and feet may have flown. But black holes? Not likely. Rather, a much more pedestrian thuggish shooting seems likely.
The above Battler image comes from his conversation with Kyrie, but it fits just as well here. Because both his conversations with Jessica and Kyrie take a similar turn – both of them imploring him to take the demons for what they are. It’s the sort of underhanded tactic like we saw in the last arc. While I don’t doubt the conversation occurred, I am dubious about Jessica and Kyrie’s states of mind while on death’s doorstep. It’s interesting that this is perhaps the first time, at least that I can remember, that anyone has told Battler that demons were involved. Now whether they were referring to real demons or metaphorical demons is up to interpretation. I took that as Jessica and Kyrie telling Battler not to reason with Kinzo (or the killer) like they were a rational human. Instead, recognize them for the monsters they are.
It’s convenient that Jessica’s death was delayed for three minutes, allowing her to be found in a bedroom, instead of by George. What I wonder is how far Jessica’s final location was from George’s final location. The distance, and the time in between them going missing and Battler receiving the call from Kinzo/Beatrice could help us figure out whether there was 1 or more culprits.
Meanwhile, the escapees are all taken down one by one, until only Kyrie remains. There’s no indication of the time that passed during their escape, but I’m skeptical that they were in the Kumadorian, because a two kilometer sprint is a pretty arduous run, and the escapees didn’t look terribly winded when they came from the exit. Something you’d expect at least from Nanjo who barely made it 50 feet before breaking out in a sweat. Kyrie’s final conversation with Battler takes a similar turn as his conversation with Jessica as I’d mentioned. However, Kyrie also apologizes for being cold to Battler for being Asumu’s son. I didn’t think much of that at the moment, but it gets a life of its own later.
With the Twilight deaths complete, Kinzo and Beatrice continue their tests to find out who will be the Ushiromiya Idol. Beatrice decides to be the one to test Battler, conveniently.
Meanwhile Battler goes to check in on Kumasawa and Gohda, but finds that both have been killed. Judging by how their feet are brushing the floor, they were likely shot dead then hung for effect. Whoever killed them would have needed a key… but with the keys no longer at a premium, it means that there should be at least a few keys floating around. But I think it’s very possible for one person to have killed both of them, and then still have time to kill George and Jessica. I don’t see anything that would suggest that multiple parties were necessary yet.
Meanwhile, Battler proceeds to his testing ground where he vows to pound the floor with Kinzo and Beatrice and whoever else was involved. Actually, Battler’s reaction and his suggesting putting Beatrice’s name as one of the sacrifices was perfect. I probably would’ve handled that the exact same way. And I bet Beatrice left that line blank just waiting to hear Battler offer to put her name in there. Sort of a passive aggressive deredere Moetrice moment there.
But since Battler can’t take that test with much credibility, she asks him to remember and atone for his sin from six years ago. Battler wonders if it was him renouncing the Ushiromiya name after a fight with his parents, but apparently wasn’t it. Meanwhile, game board Beatrice gets increasingly angered, while meta Beatrice seems to be saddened by Battler’s forgetfulness.
Well, that’s one way to go. Immolation from the inside out. Ouch. With Battler unable to remember his sin, Beatrice’s frustration (anger?) is at a fever pitch now, and she takes it out on Kinzo by turning him into a roast cow. Interestingly enough, once again Battler has not seen Kinzo in person. And once again, Kinzo is a burned, unrecognizable corpse, except for the fact that this corpse probably has 6 fingers. What exactly is the significance of this method of death? I would suggest that it’s further fuel for the fire that Kinzo is either already dead or not on the island. But I don’t know that I can discount the testimonies of Kumasawa, Gohda, Krauss and Kyrie.
So the posts on the MAL forums are all aflame, because of the apparent pacing and adaptation issues with this episode. I didn’t think the episode was bad, but I also don’t know what I’m missing. One thing I should point out that I came across is that when Beatrice accuses Battler of having a sin that caused people on the island to die, it’s said in red in the VN, but not in red in the anime. So for our purposes, we should just assume that point is truth.
The sin I am now demanding that you remember is not between Ushiromiya Battler and Beatrice.
Ushiromiya Battler has a sin.
Because of your sin, people die.
Due to your sin, a great many humans on this island die.
No one escapes, all die.
With Beatrice threatening to quit the game, leaving it in stalemate for eternity, Bernkastel, Lambda and Ange all appear to intervene. However, Beatrice claims that Battler is not qualified to play the game, and to prove it, she allows Battler the chance to say two statements in red:
- Battler Ushiromiya’s mother is Asumu Ushiromiya
- Battler Ushiromiya was born of Asumu Ushiromiya.
Battler easily says the first. But to his shock and dismay is repeatedly unable to say the second.
Claiming that she wanted to play the game with Kinzo’s grandson, she declares checkmate and either sends Battler off, or Battler leaves on his own. Unclear. Beatrice then escapes to another world (the Golden Land?) where she and Maria share a sad moment together.
So geez, where to begin. Figuring out the murders is the easy part. Figuring out how much of the strange turn of events with Battler’s bloodline is a lot more difficult. The most obvious, and probably least likely possibility is that Asumu isn’t actually dead, and this is her revenge on a family that jilted her. But… probably not. Kyrie also becomes suspect though. We don’t see her die. And it would make some sense as to why Battler is always the last to die.
It makes sense that Battler wasn’t Asumu’s son. I’d originally thought that Ange was Asumu’s child as well, what with the fire red hair, but when I learned that she was actually Kyrie’s child, I thought the coincidental matching hair color was interesting. But this wasn’t about what happened 18 years ago. This was about a sin that happened on the island of Rokkenjima six years ago. A sin that didn’t involve Battler renouncing the family name, because of his dad’s remarriage, but a sin that’s apparently related to who his real mother is. Whether or not Asumu or Kyrie is his mother doesn’t change the fact that he’s still Kinzo’s grandson, which was what Beatrice specifically mentioned for what she wanted. But if he was born out of wedlock as Kyrie’s son, it may mean that he doesn’t have any birthrights to the Ushiromiya headship. But still, what that has to do with what happened six years ago is a big question mark.
With two episodes to go, I feel like they’ve changed the game on us. The original game was to prove that the murders were not the work of magic or witches. Whether this is a red herring or not, I’m not sure. Perhaps this is part of the strategy. However, with so little time left, I’m afraid that they’re going to end on a cliffhanger. Battler realizing his sin and how he’s the centerpiece of all these murders.