(Note: Episodic notes are still mostly to be found on the Episodics Notes’ page, but up to a couple every week will have their write-up appear on the main page, when I think they warrant it. For those who don’t know, I take the notes as I watch the episode, and merely re-order them afterwards.)
Well, had a huge headache last night, went to take a nap from 0120 to 0200, when I expected the subs to come out. Woke up at 0450 when my cat wanted to be let out, but I was too tired, so went back to sleep.
And now, it’s time for Kill la Kill :)
Wha do I expect this episode? I wonder. Ryuuko and Senketsu, some people who think this show is “fast-paced” think this issue will get resolved this episode, but in which case, what will happen after? That was one thing I really liked in Gurren Lagann, the small section where it showed what happened after, and in that sense, I think the whole of Kill la Kill will only match to the first half of TTGL. Meaning, I expect Ryuuko and Senketsu to only make up in the penultimate episode, or even in the final one.
It’s interesting, if we were to talk in ages, this is the “Heroic Age”, and what will happen after the show, when our heroes “win” is the “Mortal Age”. Last episode was about the defeat of humanity, but in order for humanity to triumph, it must be done by those such as Satsuki and Ryuuko, who are far from normal humans. Humanity’s triumph can only be achieved by monsters fighting for its sake and gifting it the victory… you defeat clothes, by clothes.
Ok, enough rambling, episode time.
Thoughts and Notes:
1) A Study of Masks and Their Removal: Matoi Ryuuko Exposed:
1) “Ryuuko-chan, this isn’t the usual you!” – Usually, Ryuuko is indeed brought back to her self when Mako turns on the power of Friendship, but if Ryuuko isn’t herself, then Mako is powerless to help. She actually made a decision. Learning of her “true past”, learning of her origin, she decided she’s not who she thought she were, and so is someone different. Which is of course balderdash, and how I effect things to get resolved in the end – finding out your parents were X and Y doesn’t really change your life, your actions, and your decisions up until now. Silly Ryuuko. That’s what happens when you can’t handle complex ideas :P
2) Oh, Ryuuko-kun :( You feel everyone around you had lied to you, you know you’ll never be able to become a “normal human”, you’ll never be able to return to who you used to be – that whole notion was but a lie, of you even being that girl to begin with. Ryuuko is attacking her past, Mikisugi had never been her teacher. She could never become friends with humans, she could never become one of them, so she may as well erect a wall as tall as the mountains, she may erect a trench as deep as the ocean. She is not human, and it’s time to cast aside any silly notions such as friendship or humanity. She really needs a hug, that girl.
3) You know, Ryuuko is defeating the COVERs and rescuing humans, she had told Senketsu she had been created to destroy her brethren, meaning the clothes, but isn’t she half-human as well? Will she turn on humanity, to whom she is just as close as she is to the COVERs? Will she turn on humans, who had turned her into what she currently is? I wouldn’t be surprised to see it happen.
4) Ryuuko operates by instinct, show her an enemy and she will fight it. She is controlled by her emotions, so you can also control her by her emotions, which is what Mako had done, and what Nui is aiming for now. Ryuuko felt alone, so Nui is trying to win her over. Satsuki? They tried to make her rage and failed, and now she abandons her sister to her fate, recognizing her inability to make a difference.
5) Fake-memories’ Ryuuko is so cute, she even gets to be feminine in her wedding shot, with a narrower face. This is the life she could have had, this is a fake heaven. TTGL taught us to cast such nonsense aside. Isn’t this what you had told your allies, your friends, Ryuuko? That you can never return to your old life, and you must face reality? You shouldn’t give in to such illusions, then.
2) Spirit-Sister and Demon Mother: Egging Them On:
1) Perhaps people have been right all along. While Ragyou is a human who chose to become more of a cloth,Nui is a cloth who decided to don the shape of a human. Nothing but threads there.
2) Hm, with mother here, made of fabrics, I wonder. Is this Nui who is transmitting Ragyou’s speech, is Ragyou completely inhuman now, or do they both just speak via the fabrics they control from afar? :3
3) The gall! “This was a dastardly plan by that man. Using you, his daughter, as a mere tool. As your mother I can perfectly understand your rage.” – Don’t you mean, “As someone who had done the exact same thing to you, I can understand my late husband perfectly”? I mean, this whole section shows that Mako’s message, that “The intent is what counts!” isn’t the only thing, especially for most people, and that what is actually done matters quite a bit. Isshin had portrayed the sentence, “To fight monsters, one must become one,” he had employed Ragyou’s techniques, which he despised, but his goal wasn’t but to stop her methods, but her goals.
4) The table is set, “Come to us,” said the spider to the fly. This is like a classic fable, with a knight who goes to the forbidding castle to slay the dragon (the serpent), or the vampire (yet another manifestation of unholy forces on earth). Nui looks like an evil imp next to Ragyou. This shot is pretty great in general, what with the objective, the mountain that Ryuuko has to climb presented in such a manner by the puppet show from hell.
3) A Wake for a Still-Living Friend; A Call To Action:
1) “Goodbye, our friend.” Are they wishing her luck on her journey, or are they saying goodbye to a friend who is akin to dead? I think it’s a bit of both. This is that scene in the Hero’s Journey when one’s friends bid them farewell as they go on their adventure after their home had burnt down, but without any sense of false bravado or joy. This is akin to a wake.
2) It’s amazing, how our heroes look like villains, and how villains look like heroes in this show. Everyone’s human, and everyone will go the distance for what they believe in. We don’t have heroes, as much as we have heroic people. I mean, this shot of The Elite Four 10 episodes ago would’ve filled us with fright.
Gamagoori and his act of “Don’t look! Do not look at the plight of our mistress!” was so very human as well.
3) “The Naked Sun!” Well, if Satsuki, The Unconquered Sun (Sol Invictus) isn’t so unconquered any longer (though her spirit still stands tall!), then I guess we’ll have to come up with a new sun to light our way. Mikisugi-sensei pls. Such a tease. I thought it was going to be his penis, so did you all :P So it’s a ship.
A giant ship-sword, the same colour as Ryuuko’s scissor, but also as Gurren Lagann. And if we have a giant sword, we need a giant cloth for it to cut, don’t we? I can see where this is going.
4) “Earplugs of the heart”. You know what, Gamagoori? That was actually beautiful. You can’t change the mind of someone who is unwilling to listen. Thankfully, Mako has a good heart.
1) Our worst nightmare, the powered-up Matoi Ryuuko, powered-up even further by a Kamui, and insane and hell-bent on destroying humanity. Not only is she a fearful opponent, whom they might not be able to defeat should they go all-out, can they even go all-out against their former ally and friend?
2) Ryuuko was always a good match for a villain, and now she gets to act the part. I mean, she had alwaysbeen a villain from some point of views, but now she’s explicitly so, rather than being an anti-hero.
4) I thought the flat-out battle between Ryuuko and Satsuki will happen after they defeated Ragyou, but we still have 4 episodes to go, and it’s in the nature of siblings to squabble, so who knows? I love this sort of shot which the show had been granting us most weeks lately, to end an episode with.
Shorter Notes / Asides:
- Remember how I said Ryuuko has great faces, even when angry? Well, not now when her sanity had been completely frayed.
- Riding into the sunset, Ryuuko is a member of heaven’s angels, but she thinks of herself as a demon..
- Ryuuko is becoming the master of kick-ass entrances. Don’t mess with Ryuuko. This truly is akin to Kill Bill, which is a revenge story.
- Allies. All the threads are coming together. We’re reaching our end-game.
- High and mighty. Satsuki had learnt a lot from her dear mother.
- Damn, out of context this shot looks as if it’s the opposite of what it is, as if Gamagoori and the clothes are here to lay waste to this naked and helpless girl. This show’s artistic direction, and its shot composition, they’re really impressive. I think this is my favourite shot this episode.
- Junketsu, looking like a skeleton, looking like a skull. The white of death is enfolding Ryuuko.
Post Episode Notes:
Well, this isn’t entirely unexpected. This isn’t about thematic-depth of what we’ve had thus far, this is the theme of acceptance, the theme of loneliness. And of course, the theme of becoming a monster in order to defeat one, of becoming what it is that you seek to defeat.
Two sisters, forever locked in battle. Two sisters, their position switched. The originally so-called loyal daughter as the leader of the rebellion, wearing the cloth of the black sheep, while the ostentatious rebel is welcomed into the warm fold of family, wearing a cloth to signify purity, as she is about to lay havoc and kill all those who stand in her path.
Ryuuko had a father, which she traded away for a snake of a mother. Ryuuko discovered she had a sister whom she fought with constantly, and traded her for a new one, that had killed her father and mocked her, rather than tried to help her grow.
Ryuuko had traded Senketsu and Mako, those who speak to her, who can see her heart, for the silence of the grave, for Junketsu. Ryuuko and the fake-history? It makes sense. Ryuuko is running away from her past, running away from her friends. Why? Because you all know what Mako would do, she’d try to remind her who she is, just like Ryuuko had done to Fight Club Mako, but the last thing Ryuuko wants is to remember who she is. Ryuuko is running away from herself, and she’ll destroy the world if that is what it’d take to forget.
A revenge story, revenge for her stolen past. Revenge against those who took her life away – people like her self. This is Ryuuko trying to destroy herself. She is fueled by self-hatred, but her actions will only push her further and further, in order to forget the new atrocities she now undertakes.