Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni Kaku

Higurashi Outbreak was in a sense, disappointing, yet very satisfying. When I first heard about Outbreak plot being centered around Keiichi and Rena during a mysterious viral infection, I was ecstatic. I had high hopes while imagining a different spin off universe with Rena's insanity alongside Keiichi's brilliant designs, but overall I can't help but feel there wasn't enough impact for this OVA that made the first two seasons of Higurashi so memorable.

After a sudden quarantine of Hinamizawa, Keiichi and the others continue to live normally, as the whole "virus" thing seems to have spread across a greater area outside of the village. All of the sudden Mion shows up bearing news that there are some oddities occurring in the village based on the viral infection, and for once I am happy we didn't need another heavy description of Oyashiro-sama's curse.

Higurashi Outbreak is an example of a "bad-end" that happens during the regular timeline for Rika, where we actually see things advance far beyond the usual deaths of someone in Ni and Kai, and I wish we could see more of this bad-end where everyone still lives. There is a lot of great content in this OVA that isn't really shown during any of the other installments, including a rare and very insightful, albeit short discussion between Rika and Hanyuu about their spiritual relationship and tasks to observe mankind's end.

What I love about this OVA is how it is completely tailored to fans of the show who wanted some serious, crazy, bloody action with a hint of good-old-fashioned Higurashi mystery and thrills. The entire content of Outbreak is almost a direct taking of "what would I like to see" from the Higurashi universe.

Remember when Rena and Keiichi fought in an epic battle of cleaver vs metal bat? Now Keiichi and Rena work together with their insane desire to kill those who challenge them, almost as if they remembered their battle against each other, knowing full well of their potential. Remeber the photographer who is always butting in and getting himself killed, guess what he isn't in it, and neither is Takano, since we've had enough of those two.

It is nice to see the Doctor who Takano was taken in by, get some screen time alongside a mysterious woman who represents the new puppeteer controlling the strings of the conspiracy.

Dr. Irie? Well he was always kind of annoying and useless, how about we have him get infected and go insane? One thing I can promise you, is that if you do indeed like Higurashi, there will be several things about this OVA where you will flip your sh!t and smile in excitement.

If you liked Higurashi at all, you will enjoy this, but if you loved the thrills and steady buildup of mystery and tension, you might find yourself begging for Oyashiro's curse to sprucin things up a bit. You will get to see some sudden turn of events as the mystery of the virus is well explained for such a short video, however that can be said for mostly everything about the OVA. There was plenty of awesomeness, but unfortunately it was jam packed into a short episode that would have done well to extend the duration to let things settle in, because once you finish Outbreak, you will be left there wondering why it ended so suddenly.

Rena's insane smile as she willingly slashes at the throats of her victims, while Keiichi's rage fuels Satoshi's bat as several faces get smashed in; are some of the best moments of the show and overall this gets my approval, being the Higurashi fan that I am.