After the shocking conclusion of the Onikakushi-hen, culminating in a death toll consisting of Rena, Mion and Keiichi, we move on to the Watanagashi-hen, focusing on Mion and her twin sister, Shion. Based on the foreshadow clip at the start, it seems that Rika is also a part of this arc as well. The clip, I have to say, is even more gory and horrifying than the first one.
Time is back to the beginning of the story, before the start of the Watanagashi Festival, and the mood is back to the earlier, lighter mood, with tons of SD and funny parts. On a fine Sunday, Keiichi and the gang head to the town to a shop, holding a special competition, and the Mion starts off with the announcement that the club activity is to win the competition. Initially, Keiichi holds back as the rest of the crowd consists of children, but after being provoked by Mion, he ropes in some help and starts to pwn the rest. At the final moment, he and Mion are equal, but Mion gives up on seeing the time, citing that she needs to rush to her *arubaito*.
Keiichi heads to a nearby restaurant to eat alone, as the others are busy with their own stuff, and meets a waitress that looks like Mion. Thinking that it’s her, Keiichi teases her, until the waitress punches him and says that she’s not Mion, but Mion’s twin sister, Shion. Keiichi is suprised but thinks that it’s just a story Mion made up to cover herself, and leaves thinking so, playing along with the story.
The next day, as they’re walking home, Mion excuses herself to leave for her *arubaito* and Keiichi casually remarks about her waitress job. Mion says that it’s her sister, surprising Rena who has never met her, to which Mion replies that she lives in a different place. She also states that she’s the kind one and Shion’s the evil one. As Keiichi tries to prod further more, Mion escapes, leaving Keiichi and Rena alone to walk home. Reaching home, Keiichi is visited by Shion who brings him a *bento* as Keiichi’s parents are away for the day.
The club activity the following day is cancelled as Rika-chan has to practice for her role in the Watanagashi festival, so Keiichi decides to visit the restaurant again to return the *bento* box to Mion. He accidentally stumbles and crashes some bikes belonging to a bunch of thugs and almost gets hit by them, when he gets saved in time by Mion, in a creepy manner, with her call attracting a crowd that surrounds the thugs. Keiichi then walks around town with Mion/Shion thanking her for the *bento*, to which she replies that she didn’t before stopping herself halfway. Keiichi calls her to drop off the twin sister story, when they stop in front of a shop only to see the real Mion appearing in front of them, thereby confirming that Shion does exist, giving Keiichi a big shock.
Next day at school, Mion constantly avoids Keiichi, and while Mion is away, the rest discuss about what has been happening, while Mion overhears the conversation with a sad look on her face…
So it seems that every new arc would focus on a new girl becoming the killer. Rena’s arc is already freaking scary… I really don’t want to imagine how they would make Rika’s or Satoko’s arcs. So far, Higurashi is still one of the best thriller/horror anime I have watched in recent times. I still go “OH SHI…”, even when rewatching the Onikakushi-hen(which I am now doing with subs :P). Rena’s facial contortions are unmatched, totally unmatched.
I’m also glad that it seems that Higurashi’s popularity is increasing, with a number of people picking it up, making me glad that my effort in promoting this series come to fruit(cue: shameless self-praise and noting that there is one episode blog post missing). Make no mistake, if Higurashi continues to keep this quality on for it’s entire run, it will be one of the best horror/thriller animes ever. What a fine season this has been…… :).