…………… man I’m stunned.
I knew this episode was going to have major revelations when I put it in the MPC-HC playlist and the OP rolled w/o vocal tracks and the characters in the animation. I was certain for sure nothing good would be in this episode.
However, it seems even with the mental preparation…. this episode still hit me quite hard.
This episode fully focuses on Yu and Yuuko and finally reveals the secret that Yuuko has been hiding from him all this while, after Yu confesses his love towards Yuuko with full honesty and from his heart.
As we’ve suspected, Yuuko’s adopted brother has been severely abusing her because she isn’t a perfect replacement for his own dead sister. Not only has he abused her physically, Yuuko also describes, intensely and in detail, on how he violated her sexually the first time and detailed the abuses she has been suffering through for the past few years when he couldn’t get over the fact that Yuuko isn’t his dead sister.
In this aspect, SHAFT’s presentation style, which mirrors the Miyako spamming of Hiro’s phone in memories, was really applied to full effect and probably surpasses the mentioned example twice-fold. The visuals. The script. The voice acting. All of them choreographed together to reveal the pain and suffering that Yuuko has gone through and fully imparts the pain she has felt towards the viewers and most importantly, towards Yu, blaming him partially for what happened and for his rejection of her back when they first met and last saw each other.
God, that was a really intense and hard-hitting episode. I’ve been especially wondering what Yuko’s life has been and it definitely isn’t all sunshine and joy.
Notably as well, the visuals this week also employ liberal usage of tarot cards to present the characters emotions and state of mind to the viewers, both with Nagi, who finally realizes her own feelings towards Yu, as well as Yuuko’s painful recounting of her own suffering.
Now that this has happened, what will Yu do to resolve it? There should be a confrontation between him and Akira but who will come off the better. Most importantly to me is Yuuko’s fate afterwards and what happens that leads to her future incarnation.