AKB0048 13 - See You Next Stage

The one week wait for each episode of this was always long, and the time spent watching it always flew by; it was no different for the finale. I actually picked up the show four weeks into its run via recommendation by Pearz. I ended up watching all four episodes in one sitting and never looked back; you never steer me wrong, do you Pearz? Coming into this final episode, I knew there were too many loose ends to be tied, but I still expected it to go out with a bang. For the most part, I was really satisfied with the ending given that the AKB0048 franchise will have more time to tell its tale.

After being routed by the DES forces, Tsubasa was forced to end the concert on Lancastar prematurely; after all, the safety of the girls come first. However, both understudies and successors alike wished continue the concert, and Acchan's guiding voice and light was able to convince Tsubasa to allow them to complete what they started. Even after this episode, we still know nothing concrete about the Center Novae or their disappearances. Here, the clue is that Acchan's voice seems to come from no direction in particular, but shining lights are present. This suggests that Acchan hasn't really disappeared, but merely transcended the normal world into space-time. The power that allows interstellar travel is the Kirara Drive, so maybe Acchan just got stuck in that fourth dimension when the Kirara shone brilliantly on that fateful day on Lancastar.

Hey, it might not have been a duet, but it'll have to pass. Taking us back to episode two, the clashing ideology between Chieri and Nagisa was obvious: Chieri saw the others as rivals, while Nagisa wanted to sing together with everyone. Here in the finale, Chieri moved over to Nagisa's camp, for the present moment at least, because the situation is much bigger than themselves. Competition against each other is an afterthought because the people of Lancastar needed their support, otherwise the entertainment ban would put a vice grip on the planet. Moreover, the issue of Nagisa's lost voice was quickly resolved: she only needed to see that her parents were safe and that her proud mom and tsundere dad were there watching her perform in her debut.

Well, that certainly solves Takamina's dilemma quite well. Ironically, it was because she already decided to let Kanata take over after this concert that she was able protect both the understudies and the concert above all else, and ultimately be chosen by the kirara of succession once again. Something the writers did not decide to touch upon was Yuuko's desire and ambition to be Center Nova. Despite all the grit she showed about not being upstaged by the understudies, she showed none of that in this final episode. Maybe she simply realized that this concert wasn't her time with all that was going on.

I thought it was awesome that both the OP and the ED were used as insert songs. So now each one of these girls have the possibility to be the next Center Nova? All the understudies that performed shone radiantly, which is consistent with the idea that they're all possible candidates to be the next Center Nova. Though for some reason, I felt like they were hinting at Kanata. After seeing the current Takamina's soul resonated with the original's, Tsubasa asked, "What of Kanata?" It immediately transitions to the deep booming voice chanting "Center Nova," whom I assume to be Sensei-sensei, but the issue was dropped as quickly as it was brought up. I guess will probably be one of the main plot points in AKB0048's future project.

Dualium is the other clue about the Center Novae's disappearances as well the mystery behind the kirara. The common thread between Acchan's final performance and the understudies' performance was that they were both on Lancastar. It was on this planet that we saw the spawning of the girls' personal kirara. Though still in trace amounts, it seems Lancastar just so happens to have a more readily available amount of dualium compared to other planets. It also falls in line with Suzuko's seemingly trivial fact about how most 00 members come from mining planets. Perhaps the presence of dualium amplifies the effect of the kirara on the radiance of the soul. This is just pure speculation on my part, but maybe Center Novae that came before Acchan also disappeared on dualium-rich planets. When all the girls were glowing, it looked like Mii-chan was afraid that they might disappear like all the previous Center Novae did. Perhaps they didn't disappear because the radiance was distributed among the understudies, and not concentrated on one Center Nova.

There are still many questions left unanswered, but fear not, more AKB0048 was announced for 2013 post-credits. Hopefully it'll be a full-fledged second season and not a movie or an OVA. Another point of interest that flashed across our screens was "Maeda Atsuko the 14th." This leads us to believe that one of our beloved understudies will succeed and become the next Acchan, and possibly the next Center Nova. It seems that the real life Maeda Atsuko is graduating this August, so maybe there will be a plot point similar to that in the 2013 project. As for the rest, all we can really do is speculate for the next year or so. Even though many loose ends remain untied, I really liked the finale because it was packed with a bunch of awesome moments with the singing, dancing, and fighting space idols that we grew to know and love. This was a show that I looked forward to every Sunday and it certainly leaves a void now that the cour is done. I'm sure we'll all be painstakingly awaiting what is hopefully the second season. See you next stage.


Tasogare Otome X Amnesia In Review 5/10

Somewhere along the way Tasogare became lost within its own universe, struggling to grasp its its own darkness with the amount of fan service, romance, and comedy. Tasogare was a disappointment, but despite its inability to thrive off the essence of eeriness and haunting atmospheres, it was enjoyable to an extent.

The major flaw with the show is how it tried so hard to play itself off as a sad romance story, a-midst blood stained backgrounds and dark spooky atmospheres. The atmospheres were very well done but the issue was how often they played off some ecchi or comedy in front of these great set pieces, ruining the moment.

The finale was a huge troll end, I was almost brought to tears with what I thought was the perfect ending, only to be disappointed by the end of the credits.

The characters were somewhat shallow but are overall likable enough to keep watching. Our female lead Yuuko was the foundation the show revolves around, and she does well to invoke scenes of loneliness and sadness. Her counter part, Shadow Yuuko acts as the evil entity creating some awesome moments of thrill. Despite Yuuko's performance, too many of her scenes revolve around a mushy romance with Teiichi, which often flips our view of the show from mystery thriller to romantic ecchi comedy. The show is unable to balance these two themes and I really wish they would have integrated them together a bit better. While this was bothersome for the majority of the show, the ending does quite well to introduce a complete Yuuko that balances out her personality issues and contrasts well with the ecchi romantic Yuuko personality we come to know. The remaining two support characters make an attempt at being Teiichi's love interest, but they fall short of capturing that convincing feeling and are often there to just push Teiichi along his struggling role.

I would recommend this to anyone looking for a light thriller. The amount of ecchi, romance, and comedy isn't overboard and the eerie and mysterious scenes are well done and can really draw you in with their amazing atmospheres.

Overall a 5/10 for its quality moments but lack of smooth integration of all its themes it tried to master. 


Young Animator Training Project - Dudu the Floatie

If you've got 25 minutes of free time and like lighthearted stuff, I'd definitely recommend this for a quick watch. Of the Young Animator Training Project stuff, this is only the second that I've seen, the other one being Wasurenagumo. Of the two, I definitely liked Dudu the Floatie more simply because how much more straightforward it was. Unlike the bizarre and unexpected ending that we got from Wasurenagumo, this little short's goal was easier to see: it was to highlight the bond between father and daughter.

For the visuals, what stuck out to me the most were the character designs. Just the simple contrast of size between father and daughter was cute. For  some weird reason, I really liked how the eyes were drawn too. Moreover, the color choice was rather fitting of what felt like a small segment of a kid's PG movie. 

The story is rather easy to follow. Mika is upset that her father breaks his promise of taking her to the beach yet again due to him being called in for work again. As she dozes off in the kiddie pool, she, along with Dudu, goes on an imaginative journey of adventure and self-reflection. Upon the climax of her dream, she tells her "evil self" that she'll definitely wait until her father takes her to the beach and sees her father's fear going into the sea.

Her father's reinflation of the Dudu also inflated his courage to confess his phobia to his daughter. Being the forgiving daughter that she is, they go to the beach as promised. Seeing her daughter float away into the ocean, the father overcomes his fear and swims to her to re-clasp her hand, bringing this heartwarming short to an end. I thoroughly enjoyed this, and will probably go back to watch the first 2011 short before gg translates the fourth one. It's really nice to see some talent going into the anime industry in Japan.


Rune Factory 2 NDS

After checking out a new store in my area similar to Gamestop and EB games, I picked up an old DS game called Rune Factory 2.

The game revolves around a boy with amnesia and gets a free farm to take care of in a little town. You spend the majority of the game growing crops in each season while performing little fetch quests for your neighbors, a lot like Animal Crossing, except this game adds in a possible romance and marriage option with any of the townsfolk as well as some "dungeons" to kill enemies. One of the coolest features you don't see to often in games these days is you get to play as your second generation, so when you marry and have a kid, 7 years pass and you get to play the game fresh as your son/daughter in what seems to be a slightly harder version of the game where you can upgrade your tools, weapons, abilities, and fight harder monsters in the dungeons. 

The game is top down perspective as you run around slaying monsters and plotting your crops for money. There is no core feature that really grabs my attention, but the whole package itself of what you can do is a breath of fresh air among today's games. I played Animal Crossing for so long before realizing that I didn't even know why it was so addicting or fun, and I think Rune Factory is also worthy of the Animal Crossing addiction. 

The graphics are old but consistent, they use the 8 bit sprites and cut out images of each character like most games from Japan. Unlike Animal Crossing each day goes by in a matter of 24 minutes, and you can only do so much in a day, there are certain days like holidays or character birthdays where you get to take part in special events which is nice, but the main thing you do is talk with everyone in town each day raising their friendship and love points.

 It's a fairly old game with the recent announcement of Rune Factory 4 for the 3ds in Japan already, but if you ever want to sit back and break free from the hollywood style of today's gaming industry then I would suggest picking up one of the Rune Factory Games. 


AKB0048 12 - Kirara of Love

No OP this episode? Shit must be getting real then. Weeks flew by, and now we're at the penultimate episode of the series already. I expected them to do the daddy rescue this week, and finish off with the concert for the finale, but they ended up putting both in this episode. Nagisa's suffering was the main draw in this episode, but the show must go on, right?

As expected, the whole deal with Orine's Sakura machine was a non-issue. It was only for a second that she looked devastated, but Chieri comes to the rescue. She easily convinces Orine that it's not her fault and shows us more of her deft micsaber skills. If there somehow manages to be a second season, I wonder if they'll go the route of having to deal with Chieri's father. Here's to hoping that this show isn't just a giant commercial to promote the real AKB group! I'm sure the sales for this show isn't doing too shabby, though I have no citation at the moment.

Yes it is, and you should keep blaming yourself because that'll make it everything all better. Their decision to go help rescue Nagisa's dad bore no fruit, and even shot down (pun very much intended) Megu's chance to step on the same stage as Youko. In fact, Nagisa has so much angst built up that she even loses her voice and is unable to sing. My confidence in her being the next Center Nova dropped slightly, but not worries, there's still one more episode left for her to bounce back.

Meanwhile, Chieri has taken up Nagisa's role in the song Nagisa no Cherry. Taking us back to episode two, Chieri wants to prove that she is better than Nagisa, but in what respect? That she's a better singer and dancer? She already knows this. I think it proves that Chieri's determination to be an idol is a thousand times greater than Nagisa's. Maybe she did cause her dad to be detained. Maybe she is causing the other understudies trouble by losing her voice. But she is definitely thinking about this the wrong way. What ever happened to her dream of the four of them performing together on stage? Why not perform her heart out and once again convince Lancastar as well as other planets under the entertainment ban that bringing joy to people's hearts is not a crime? Maybe she'll come to realize this in the finale. I still believe!

So this will be Takamina's final concert? Though it might sound phony coming from real life politicians, I do think that true leadership means thinking about the next generation. And in Olympic fashion, Takamina is passing the torch to her successor. It looks like Takamina has finally come to terms with what's best for herself, Kanata, and the AKB group as a whole. This whole scene could be seen as a big death flag for Takamina; it all depends on whether or not Kawamori wants to add a bit more suffering to the ending. Yuuko, though with such little screen time this week, still seems very determined. With only one more episode left, we still know next to nothing about the Center Novae. I can't imagine them being able to pull it off well with only twenty minutes left.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think that this is the first time that we see a concert get canceled on screen. It turns out that Mamoru and Yuuka's feelings are mutual, and thus a twintails kirara is born. Congratualtions on being a mom, Yuuka! Forget the idol radiance stuff, it looks like the kirara respond to their feelings when they are at a peak. Maybe all the characters will get their own kirara eventually. I'm sure they won't leave this concert unfinished for the finale. I'm expecting them to regroup, Nagisa to get her shit together, Chieri and Nagisa to sing Seaside Cherry as a duet, and ultimately find out about Acchan's disappearance. Is that too much to squeeze in for the finale? Let's hope Kawamori will pull through for us. Bracing myself for the final episode.


Horizon S2 1: Giant Robots? Giant Bewbs? Seems Legit!~

Finally! The rain of steel and melons has arrived!

So if you’re new en you wanna know what the general story then go here: http://www.clanrain.com/2011/11/kyoukai-senjou-no-horizon-01-04-story.html. Mind you the 1st season was burned because of the lack of attention to proper storytelling. However!! Once you get the gist of the story, you can sit back and enjoy the massive fanservices and hilarious main character (Aoi Toori voiced by the famous Jun Fukuyama!) who starts off naked non the less.

So now the city of Musashi embarks on a quest to take back all the emotions of Horizon which are in the form of the Deadly Sin Armaments. However, unlike the first season we begin the second with a lot of action all the way till the end of the episode. Hopefully, this season they do a good balance between action a better interpretation on the story.

Ones of things that gets me really amazed about the series is the fact that the creator is capable of balancing out the unusually large number of character and character types. Seriously, take a look at all the characters, they each have their own personalities and unique design, and from a writer's standpoint, it’s very hard to balance out and give each character their own screen time. As there are many amazing characters on all sides, it make me want some of those from the other teams to switch over to Musashi simply because their character types are either really hawt, adorable or just plain awesome.

Fortunately, this story does not directly focus on the main character and his world, his life, his past and what not. This helps the other characters attain a higher standing than normal by focusing on giving each character an equal an amount time. Unlike any other series I’ve come across, the main character in this series acts more like the support than the those who should be supporting him.
In this series Aoi Toori is a character that chooses not to stand above others, instead he is the one that keeps the morale and fire within the other characters who are the actual fighters or Heroes. And under the pretext that Aoi is the King of Musashi, it is his job to make sure the other characters (his people) are in a good mood. So as the king keeps the heroes up, those heroes pave the way to their goals.

Quite a twist in rolls don’t you think?

The magic system in the series is another thing that amazes me. Especially the magics of Toussaint Neshinbara (tactician looking guy) who types in his spells in the form of a literature than it becomes a magic spell of sorts. The concept they created from mixing machine and magics is simply genius.

The events of this episode is really just amazing. We got Aoi Toori disrupting the opponent using his crotch of all things, btw this clearly shows his ability and roll as one to support his team. And Azuma mistaking sex as something a couple casually does then invites his room mate, Miriam Poqou to get some (⌐■_■). Really this episode, does well to entertain whilst keep everything under control.

On a few notes: Notice the scar that goes around Aoi Toori, hopefully they explain this later on. Also notice that Naomasa (one ridding the giant robot of Musashi) has large melons while her machine is flat(-ish) chested. But on the other team (Tres Espania), their giant machine has giant...no, humongous bewbs while the pilot, Fusahide Era, is flat...Lulz really.

In the end this episode is just well directed en extremely entertaining. Though we have yet to see how well they would convey the story to us, for now it’s all just nice and fun.


Hyouka 11.5-12: Fanservice and Romance?

Don’t expect any good episode 11.5 screenshots on this, I can’t find any high quality copies of the episode. Which is extremely sad since it’s got Chitanda fan services!

Okay, so obviously episode 11.5 is meant to cover up Orekis dilemma on who he is. But in my opinion, they didn’t need to make this episode for such a reason. I mean, the closure done in episode 11 was already well done even if it was short. What I do want to see from the last arc is a better closure of Irisu and who exactly is that sempai she was chatting with. But oh well, perhaps they will reveal it in another arc or something.

High quality PLEASE?!

On to episode 12 and you should have notice an insane amount of detail that was put into the cultural festival, not to mention the work they put into designing and drawing Idara and Fukubes rooms! I’m pretty sure we all have a general idea of how cultural festival works and how it looks but no where else have I seen an series gone this far into putting life into the festival. This was the first time I’ve truly felt liveliness and splendour of such a festival; it really did make me feel like I too was in the festival.

But not only that, the animation! Not only did they give great animations for the characters in focus but also the character behind the scenes (like the ones in the shot above). I mean this is quality you only get to see in high budget movies!

Fanservice!! We finally get to see more hawt sauce from the ever so sexy and adorable Chitanda in both 11.5 and 12 (I’m talking about the photoshoot she had). Granted 12 can’t exactly be called fanservice as 11.5 was, it was still great. I’ll leave Chitandas body in 11.5 to do the talking and go onto 12 where the fanservice was brought on more from her adorable nature ontop of the amount of detail they put into drawing her.

Early into the 12th episode we see Idara feeling awkward when Fukube openly talks about her hobbies. Then later on we see that she has some sort of disagreement with her fellow club mates, who unfortunately were cosplaying Vocaloid, which by the way is a fantastic add-on to the episode.

From this, we will probably see Ibaras story arc up next. It’ill be very interesting to see how the producers would handle her arc if it was decided to run along the cultural festival since it would hurt the producers pockets if they kept the high quality production along multiple episodes.

If you guys may have noticed from episode 1 all the way till 12, we see Oreki checking out Chitanda in one way or another. However I feel these shots suggest something more than just meets the eye. In episode 11.5 Chitanda tells Oreki that he is someone special to her right before calling Ibara and Fukube the same. But we all know how it really works right? Right?! Now jump to the ending song of episode 12, we have detective Chitanda and Ibara chasing Oreki and Fukube. Notice that when they have them handcuffed, both Chitanda and Ibara blush and flutter. Romance in Hyouka? Personally, I feel it would a fabulous idea to add light romance to an already fantastic series. And really, who wouldn’t want OrekiXChitanda or FukubeXibara?

Oreki 'Holding the fort'

In the end, though the episode didn’t officially bring in a new mystery and was more like a filler plus a prologue into the new arc. Also it was a kind of sweet candy or like an appetizer of sorts for us viewers to keep your eyes stuck on the screen. So overall (づ ̄ ³ ̄)づ


AKB0048 11 - Full Circle

It has been ten episodes since our fledgling girls left Lancastar, but now they finally return to their home planet to make their debut. Home sweet home? Not quite. The girls have grown a lot during this journey, but time also flows on Lancastar; it's not the same as it used to be. Judging by the pacing and what they've covered during this episode, I'm sure the climax of the show will be the concert on Lancastar. Given that we only have two episodes left, it's hard to imagine that they'll tie up all the loose ends very well. I'm sure all of us are hoping for a second season; make it happen Japan!

Seaside Cherry. Nagisa no Cherri. Nagisa and Chieri. Very subtle there. Duet, maybe? Indeed, it looks like Tsubasa is finally making her move to find out more about the Center Novae's disappearances. Unsurprisingly, the girls are baffled that Nagisa is chosen to perform the song sung by Center Nova upon their promotion. But what does she have that the other girls don't? Not only the successors, but Kanata and Chieri are clearly more skilled than Nagisa is. As far we, the audience, know, the kirara arbitrarily glow for Nagisa is because she's the protagonist. This has clearly been affecting Chieri since the second episode of the show, but how will they resolve this? I don't think Nagisa will put on the performance of her life all of a sudden and prove that she's worthy of the Center Nova position.

The mysterious SSSS higher-up asshole is also causing conflict with successors as well. So why did he compose a new song exclusively for the understudies? Because he felt like it, that's why. Of course, these idols and idols-to-be are taught not to question the system, which interestingly mirrors how the common folk are told to unquestioningly follow the entertainment ban with vague bullshit like "entertainment leads the heart astray." Yuuko isn't going to take this sitting down; why should some upstart idol trainees get priority over the successors? The issue of blurred identity is again revisited: Is she Yuuko, or is she the person taking on the name of Yuuko? I think she's not speaking the whole truth here. She's definitely herself, much more so than she is Ooshima Yuuko; she prioritizes her dream of becoming Center Nova above all else. According to the BD booklet, her real name is Kimishima Hikaru.

This scene really gave me a good laugh. I think the majority opinion on Mamoru was that he was anti-entertainment because of the parting gift he gave Yuuka. Surprisingly, it turns out he's part of Lancastar's WOTA forces, and a Suzuko fan to boot! It's nice to see that he's worried about Yuuka's safety. Mamoru and Aoi are both pretty cool characters. More importantly, the anti-entertainment faction of the planet gained momentum since they left and Mamoru even reveals that Nagisa's dad has been arrested. Nagisa, of course, feels that she selfishly caused her dad to be arrested. With so much on her mind, how can she possibly succeed in her debut? Perhaps Acchan will return and guide her to victory. Apparently Acchan wasn't a very remarkable girl herself, but shone brilliantly once she got on stage. It's just my speculation though.

Cue dramatic sound effect. Indeed, the factory that Orine was working in back then produced DES machines. Orine seemed to like her job very much, so I'm sure this is an extremely devastating blow to her. Even worse, what if the machine she helped build actually kills her? Kawamori won't pull that shit on us now, right? Besides, Chieri is too awesome to let something like that happen. It's hard to imagine what they'll actually fit in with only two episodes left. Right now, it seems like Lancastar is swarming with DES forces, even more so than on Tundrastar. Before she was interrupted by the DES, Nagisa was rashly going to try to rescue her dad, so maybe that'll be in the next episode, leaving the debut concert for the finale. Personally, what I want to know most about is the mystery surrounding the Center Nova. Here's to hoping for two impossibly brilliant episodes to cap off this great run.


AKB0048 10 - Gratuitous Gravure

This week's installment of futuristic space idols feature an obligatory beach episode with the fanservice in midseason form. Being an idol the show, there's no way they'd skip out on one of these; I mean what's a better way to promote your group than showing scantily clad girls on the beach? Though it definitely contained less plot than its predecessors, this week's episode reaffirms the issues at hand, provides a bit more insight into some of the characters, and certainly sets itself up nicely for the next episode. Bring on the suffering Kawamori; you don't scare me!

I don't even own a pair of yuri goggles, but I knew what they were nudging at here. It looks like we didn't get a resolution from Takamina's last line in the previous episode about how the name "Takamina" belongs to Kanata. In fact, I think this'll probably be the extent of this issue; Takamina, though with some doubt, will continue as a successor as long as she can; Kanata will continue to be an understudy despite having successor level skills. With only three episodes left, I hope we can soon see this system get turned on its head and finally find out what this shady Sensei-sensei is all about.

We were already given hints that Tsubasa was a former member, but some new knowledge that we get is that she performed side by side with the last Center Nova, Acchan. From her talk with Yuuko and Mii-chan, it appears she's still clueless about the disappearances of the Center Novae, yet is trying to bring back the position. It sort of leads me to question her character a bit: Acchan's disappearance on stage that day prompted her to join the support staff, yet after all these years she hasn't really found anything on it; she just seems to be blindly obeying the rules and eating up whatever Sensei-sensei tells her to do. What's more important though is what the Center Novae saw; if it caused Mii-chan to run away and quit, it's probably something dangerous right? 

I guess we'll finally see Tsubasa make her move because she's planning to make Chieri/Nagisa the next Center Nova; Mii-chan and Yuuko wouldn't be too pleased. Speaking of which, in the day-off episode, Yuuko said that Mii-chan was rumored to be spotted on Atamistar; I wonder if she recognized her and got in touch with her. Though even if she did, Mii-chan seems pretty adamant about preventing the position from resurrecting and wouldn't tell her anything. Looking at the preview next episode, the group is returning to Lancastar. Will Yuuka's (ex)boyfriend make a reappearance? Will Nagisa finally be able to get some legitmate screen-time now that we're back on her home-planet? Will Chieri's fixation on Nagisa's supposed "idol radiance" finally make her snap? Most importantly, what will we learn about Center Novae position? Sunday can't come soon enough.


Hyouka 11: Puppets of the empress

So Orekis first mistake and we got his friends trying to get him on the right track. Though I like how Chitanda, Fukube and Ibara secretly tried to tell Oreki about his wrong, the way they treated him on his first mistake was in my opinion… over the top. I mean, it’s his first mistake, you can’t expect him to be perfect even if he did do well in the past mysteries. Yeah I guess you can scold him a bit on his mistake but their reactions were as if he did a bigger taboo. I guess the producers were trying to exemplify the smaller, more subtle emotions since the series isn’t exactly big on the epic stuff? This was really something that stood out in the episode that isn’t exactly good in my opinion.

I got “sad faced” when I found out the true scheme of the empress, Irisu. I really liked those striking eyes, white skin and black(-ish) hair, but in the end problem was brought to its level because of her. With all that said the last scene of her chatting left much to be desired. Who was the senpai she was chatting with (I’ll go more into that in the last paragraph)? They didn’t really put a close to the part where Oreki and the team find out about the empress’ true objective. Hopefully this is actually a bridge to another story arc later on.

I still like her looks though (づ ̄ ³ ̄)づ. Also kudos to her genius in manipulating the people around her.

Taking a look at the mystery itself, it really wasn’t anything. I’d say it’s not even at the level of those generic mystery cases. But there’s this saying, “it’s not the destination but the journey” and this saying can be placed well with the mystery. When you take a look at the way they got to the conclusion, all the twists and turns and mistakes our characters went through, it comes together as a very entertaining ride. Not to mention the way story was plotted out is something a lot of other stories are missing. The writer did a good job in controlling what you know, kind of like this episodes “narrative tricks”, to create a more exciting twist when a surprise comes up (Now I’m talking about the entire series, not just this arc).

For those of you who didn’t understand what whole conclusion and how the mystery came to be, read the following:
Hongou actually tried to create a mild mystery where no one died, because she preferred happy endings instead of tricks. And apparently it was the tricks that Oreki concentrated on in order to find the true end instead of figuring out the kind of person Hongou was.
So while making the story, Hongou made a poll asking people whether they prefer death in the story or not. Although the poll told her that people wanted at least 2 deaths, she ignored that fact and went for no deaths. But since she wasn’t in the set at the time of the shooting, the crew also ignored her script and went for the blood.
After Hongou saw what they filmed and she felt guilty for ignoring the poll results but she isn’t the type to fight back. This is where Irisu comes in and from the start she too didn’t like the story and thought of the situation as an opportunity to reject in the script in a way that wouldn’t hurt Hongou. So Irisu somehow managed to make Hongou feign illness and leave the script undone.
Now Irisu brought in not the mystery solvers but the new script writers. She made the Oreki and the rest think that the film was Hongous original idea and asked them to solve it. But in reality Irisu just wanted someone to continue writing the script.
Awesome story isn’t it?

Looking back at the first episode of this arc, I now know that the person typing on the phone was Irisu who was exchanging text messages with Hongou. Now the person Irisu was chatting with on the computer, the person who used orange text was her senpai. Next using the pink text was Chitanda, this was when Irisu invited her and company to come in. Going back to Irisus senpai, they never told us who he/she is… however!! Her senpai did say this “but you shouldn’t lie to me either since I’m on the other side of the world”. Those words, “on the other side of the world”, makes me think that her senpai is somewhere else. Also it was this senpai that introduced our protagonists to Irisu. So how would someone somewhere else know about the detective team? Only one person fits that bill, Orekis sister. Now you may ask why then did Irisu not go directly to Oreki and instead had Chitanda introduce everyone. Well it’s to simply hide her plan more thoroughly. Of course this is all just theory, a theory that has a lot of holes so in the end it could still be anyone. I’m just solving things based to the circle of knowledge I have right now. Though it would be awesome if it was Orekis sister eh?