This week’s subtitle is brought to by Hiro, who’s vocabulary has become so elementary, all he can do now is make one syllable grunts signaling confusion, fear or cowardliness.
This episode wasn’t bad. Again, it moved the plot forwards and we’re hurdling towards some sort of resolution. But it made me kind of sad, because I’m starting to believe that this mystery is actually pretty straightforward, and we’re not going to get any Higurashi or Umineko-esque brain-melting twists. If the show continues at its current pace, I’m looking at it as a 5/6 rating anime. Very disappointing by Ryukishi07 standards. But I shouldn’t eulogize it yet, there’s still time.
The episode starts off with Kaname being realized from the jail cell by Nemuru, who’s straying from the "law" by taking her friends’ fates into her own hands. But before letting Kana-chan go, Nemuru confirms Kana’s research and admits that she and her people aren’t humans, but "monsters who carry a cursed fate." For Kana’s safety, Nemuru suggests forgetting about this whole incident and not digging any further into it (pfft, when has that warning ever worked?). Meanwhile, there’s some sort of odd politicking going on in the Jouga Wolves’ camp, as Mr. Hawk, as I will dub him, questions Nemuru’s decisions concerning Isuzu and Kana and accuses her of putting her personal interests above the village law. He also admits to getting some hired help to deal with the mitsu (or temptation, a.k.a. Hiro). Whether he plans to kill him or just capture him to give the ladies and gents from getting hot and bothered under the collar is uncertain.
Apparently the village rules say the Jouga wolves can’t snuff the fallen people, but that doesn’t stop Mr. Hawk from leading a lynch mob to ostensibly partake in a good ole’ pitchforkin’ (sans the fork). Honestly I don’t know why they went after Hiro, when they’re clearly not allowed to, and when they hired an "expert" for the job, but perhaps they’re a little hot and bothered under the collar as well. Hiro owes Nemuru a debt of gratitude, as she intercedes to stop the attack not only on Hiro, but perhaps a possible attack on Mana imouto-chan as well. Even going so far as gifting Mana an ugly rabbit.
Meanwhile, Pharma dude appears to be playing both sides of the field. On one hand, he’s been hired by Mr. Hawk to deal with the Hiro problem. On the other hand, he’s learning the biological secrets about the Jouga wolves. And on the third hand, all he seems to care about is killing the Jouga wolves to avenge his fiancée’s murder.
I’m not sure what in the world is going on with Kaori. In accepting the wolf mask, I assume it means she’s accepted a cursed fate. Is she a fallen human, who’s now joining Nemuru’s roaming wolf gang? Would the girl that Issei infected follow a similar path? Or is this ceremony for a different purpose. That Nemuru’s uncle seems to be leading this procession and not Mr. Hawk or Nemuru’s grandfather makes me think that they could be after a different goal.
Nemuru is punished with house arrest after the latest incident in which she stopped the Mr. Hawk and the gang from going after Hiro. I believe this is because she continues to put her personal interests ahead of the village’s interests – but I’m not sure how Mr. Hawk’s actions were copacetic either. Anyway, Nemuru overhears a phone conversation in which pharma dude claims to have captured Hiro, and she defies her grounding and heads out to find him.
There’s a pretty good action and chase scene in which Nemuru handily beats down pharma dude, but he relies on some late trickery to end the fight the victor. I’d been skeptical about all the supernatural scenes I’d seen before, mostly because they had a lack of witnesses, and Hiro’s hazy memory, but based on Nemuru’s and Nemuru’s uncle’s conversations, and then the fight scene between Nemuru and pharma dude, I guess I have no other option to believe that she and the Jouga wolves are indeed not human and have special powers.
With Nemuru knocked out cold, pharma dude invites Hiro out to the dark, abandoned construction area to learn the truth… and then throws Hiro into a locked room with Nemuru under a bright full moon. There sure have been a lot of full moons lately. What in the world is going on with Jouga’s lunar cycle? It seems obvious that Nemuru’s going to get real tempted to do this and that with Hiro next week, but I’m a little curious to see what happens when the Jouga wolves get all the time in the world to get wild. How far would Issei have gone with the girl if he hadn’t been hunted down? How far would Isuzu have gone with Hiro.
So the Jouga wolves are a class of humans that are susceptible to losing control of their inhibitions and gaining physical benefits under certain conditions. That includes:
- The fruitfulness of the hassaku harvest (the more, the better they can control their passions)
- The lunar cycle (full moons make them wild)
- Pheromone-rich humans like Hiro
In actuality, they may not be a subclass of humans, but rather humans that are suffering some type of mental illness similar to manic depression. Furthermore, I’m thinking that they discourage their own from moving out of the old village, and that they kill their fallen, not because they’re concerned about the welfare of the people in the new village, but because they don’t want evidence of their secret slipping out. I’m also still pushing the theory that Kaori is some type of "Queen Bee" as far as immunity goes. I bet if you cut her open, you’d find hassaku juice running through her veins.