A thoughtful response to current anime.

Mirai Nikki – Episode 16

The last episode of Mirai Nikki ended with our heroes in the hospital, stripped of their diaries.  Well, to be clear, Yukiteru and Yuno were in the hospital – the only character in this show who could really claim to be a “hero” was hatcheted to death by Yuno in episode 5.  Things are looking pretty bad for our morally-ambiguous protagonists, but now Minene, the wild card, has shown up.  Is she friend, or is she foe?  If she’s foe this is gonna be an awful short season, so I’m gonna guess “friend”.  I’m just not sure what they have to offer her as potential alliance partners, but I guess we’ll find out in episode 16 of Mirai Nikki.

…thirty minutes pass…

That's our Yuno! *laughtrack*

Ok, so the reason Minene is allying herself with Yukiteru and Yuno is because they’re friends with Nishijima, and Minene had an obligation to Kurusu after he freed her, which Nishijima inherited on Kurusu’s death.  I’m not sure that obligation extends to life counseling, though.  Trying to mend Yukiteru’s relationship with his estranged father seems to be beyond the call of duty, and well beyond her skill set. It seems a little dangerous to go to an international terrorist for inspirational advice, you know?  “Don’t give up, even if the cause seems hopeless, because thanks to the magic of asymmetrical warfare it only takes one guy to bomb a subway station”.  OK, thanks Minene.

I gotta say, I’m a little mystified as to what Marco and Ai are playing at.  Some of the stuff they’re doing makes sense – yeah, you want to keep Yukiteru and Yuno alive so that you can keep tabs on Yukiteru’s future.  Yeah, you want to talk to Yukiteru’s dad so that you can find out who’s controlling him.  You could try to get Yukiteru to interrogate him remotely while you watch over his Future Diary, but if you don’t trust him to do a good job, that’s fair.  But what I don’t get is, why have them come to a tower booby-trapped with bombs?  And why prepare fake diaries? Either you want to kill Yukiteru and Yuno or you don’t.  If you do, then it’s really easy to.  If you don’t, then couldn’t you have just grabbed his dad and left?  I guess you could argue that Yukiteru really really really pissed Marco off with his false romance with Yuno.  So Marco wanted Yukiteru to suffer as much as possible before he died.  Yukiteru would struggle passionately to reclaim his diary, enduring a brutal beating, and finally when he reached the goal, he would grab the diary, and he would look at it to see what the future was going to be, and then he would see a blank screen, and Ai would draw out the real diary and slowly break it as Yukiteru looked on in his final moments of despair before being erased from reality.  But Marco didn’t really strike me as a cruel enough person to want to do that, and that also doesn’t explain the bombs.  So it’s a mystery.

I don’t like Yukiteru’s father.  You can say, oh, he didn’t know that breaking Yukiteru’s cellphone would kill him, and I’ll believe you.  Yuno probably should have been a little slower to leap to murderous conclusions, although that’s part of her charm.  But still, he should have suspected something was up when he was offered $30,000 to break it.  Even if he didn’t have reason to suspect that it was Yukiteru’s life, it could have had like evidence of corporate malfeasance, or celebrity blackmail info, or something else of value on it.  He should have at least checked with Yukiteru beforehand, if only to see if he could get more than thirty grand for the contents of the phone.  Maybe he doesn’t want to have to split the profits?  It shouldn’t be hard to browbeat Yukiteru out of his rightful share, though.  Look at how he let his dad walk all over him when he was cheating at the contest of physical strength!

So that gets at the more-literal-than-usual cliffhanger at the end of this episode.  Who should Yukiteru trust, Yuno or his dad?  Well it hasn’t been two full episodes since he was locked in Yuno’s rape dungeon.  That has to sort of count against her.  But his dad was also denying him agency, treating him like an object, deceiving him and secretly searching for his cellphone instead of just asking him where it was like one human being would ask another.  Society considers it more normal to treat your children this way than to treat the object of your romantic affection this way, but is it really any better?  Maybe Yukiteru should choose neither, and just fall.  He can’t rely on other people to save him forever, they’ll betray him.  It’s time for him to stand on his own two feet.  Or lie crushed to death under a pile of rubble, but at least for those last couple of seconds he will have taken ownership of his life.

Bonus Image Corner:

I got a new monitor just in time for some amazing Yuno crazyfaces.


This face isn't even crazy, it's just adorable.


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