THIS POST CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR THE ANIME
DO NOT READ IF NOT CAUGHT UP
It took me a while but I finally watched the anime. I was reluctant as I saw spoilers and then I basically read the plot summary for each arc and I was like, “Hmm… I’m not sure if I want to watch this but the time travel aspect intrigues me”.
I figured seeing as I knew what would happen I wouldn’t be as emotionally scarred. I was wrong!
It’s one thing reading a summary and another thing actually watching the series.
For one thing I got to know who all the characters were, so they weren’t just names to me. I got to know their dynamics better and the details of the plot missed out in summaries.
So having finished the anime now, I have a lot of thoughts… a lot!
For one thing, Takemichi. I want to slap him.
And no, not because he can’t fight. It actually makes sense that he can’t fight. He doesn’t train, he doesn’t work out and the story happens within a very short time frame. The guys he fights have been fighting for years and so yeah, he’s going to get beat.
I actually like that Wakui didn’t make him unrealistically gain fighting abilities within two months and beat everyone.
However, he does have an unnatural ability to take a beating. He’ll look half dead and then the next episode he’s just got a couple of plasters and looks a bit roughed up… wounds don’t heal that quickly!
Where’s his broken nose? Where’s his swollen eye?
His injuries should last longer and honestly, I thought man would die at least once. It’s worse when I read the manga like… how has he not ended up in hospital once?
So no, Takemichi’s fighting skills don’t bother me. It’s his mission skills.
Naoto told him everything in the beginning. He said Kisaki and Mikey were the problem and they should never meet… never! I understand forgetting details because Naoto gave him a lot of information but forgetting that basic principle!
And I hate how he’s like, “But Mikey would never do that, Mikey is not like that”…
Do you know him! Are you his friend?
You’ve known him a month (at one point in the anime when he first started saying that) and you think you know him. You think you know him better than his life long friends?
I just… that pissed me off.
Clearly there’s something wrong with Mikey if he keeps going down a dark path. Don’t dismiss Naoto’s words, instead find out what’s wrong with him. Find out what troubles him and what darkness he holds within him.
Learn from Chris from Charmed the best time traveller there ever was. There’s a reason Wyatt turns evil…even though he started off good.
Then there’s the bit where he fails his basic mission of keeping them from meeting. He even bumped into Kisaki but he didn’t recognise him?! He didn’t even look that different!
However, I think this might be the anime’s fault. In the manga Kisaki, when he bumps into him that first time, looks very different. He has a Manji symbol craved in his hair and has a buzz cut… he looks a tad different from his photo in the future. Because of the Manji symbols I think the anime censored it and thus that’s why Kisaki basically looks the same as he did in his future photo in the anime.
So I’ll give Takemichi that.
So fine, he couldn’t stop them from meeting. Then go on to plan B, trash talk! Mikey likes you and favours you, start trash talking Kisaki from jump! Paint a horrible picture of him (that is true anyway) and then it’ll make your job easier and Baji’s job much easier later on.
So I knew what would happen to Baji and I thought I would be ok watching the episode. I was not.
I knew the basic details, I did not know that Baji was the one who started the TMG or his history with Kazutora and Shinichiro.
That was so sad.
Kazutora lost his mind in that scene. You can see it. You can see him break because he killed someone precious to Mikey.
However whether it was Mikey’s brother or not the fact that he was willing to kill shows he was already half broken. We see him look at a family through a restaurant and that triggers his need to steal.
Then later we see that he lived in an abusive home.
Those two factors put together shows whatever happened at home was eating away at him. My question is though, what happened to his mother? We see her ask the question but we don’t see his response and we don’t know what happened afterward.
I feel like the key to Kazutora’s breakdown is in that flashback.
But Baji was there and Baji was distraught too. No matter how ready to fight Baji is or how crazy he’s portrayed as, he’s a good guy with a kind heart.
He’s also smart.
He saves Takemichi when he punches Kisaki at the meeting and he figures out that Kisaki is bad news.
Perhaps he’s emotionally intelligent?
I just wish he had told Mikey his thoughts, would Mikey not have listened to him? Or at least told him his dying words. Why did he tell Takemichi, a guy he didn’t even know that well?
They have three scenes together before the fight and they’re very short.
Why didn’t he tell Mikey or literally any of his friends instead?
At least Chifuyu was with him in his last moments.
My personal theory is that Baji is the group’s heart and not Draken. Draken is very important but he can be as lost to violence as Mikey can be. Baji was the only one who remembered the groups original purpose and held on to it (although I think Mitsuya was also holding on to it given how he is with Hakkai).
He held on to their purpose and treasured it. He kept the group from falling apart. He kept Mikey from killing Kazutora.
I have since read the manga and I won’t put spoilers here for that. But yeah, the manga supports my theory.
So that’s what stuck out to me the most.
Oh and the fact that Takemichi is going to need a lot of therapy once the story is over. He has watched his friends die twice and they died horrifyingly.
He has been shot and stabbed.
There is no way he is ok. None!
I hope they’ll be there to save him as he’s been there to save them.
I do admire how he doesn’t give up, even though he’s scared and even though he knows he can’t fight.
That ending though! Who ends an anime like that! I mean they have to get us to come back for the next season but that felt extreme.
I wasn’t planning on reading the manga but I had to after that ending. Also, I wanted to meet Hakkai properly.
My favourite characters so far are Draken, Baji (why is it always the sexy ones that die?) and Chifuyu. I also like Akkun, the poor guy, he deserves hugs.
I have no beef with Hina, she’s a cool girl and very brave but I wouldn’t say she’s a favourite. I did wonder if they’d add female delinquents as they exist in Japan but nah they didn’t.
Oh and I love Naoto. He can do no wrong. He turns into a very handsome adult so I only like adult Naoto.
Side note: isn’t it weird that Takemichi is twenty six and is still twenty six mentally and pursues Hina? They don’t kiss or anything and everything is G rated between them but there’s one scene where I remembered and I was like, “Oh, he doesn’t see himself as a kid but as twenty six even when back in time.”
This is like when I realised Cher and Josh had an age gap that would make their relationship illegal in Clueless. I love the movie but when I realised that I was like… *side eyes*.
Ok, I’ll stop rambling.
It was a good season. I think they animated the manga well and they did Baji justice. His voice actor though… wow, love your work. And I look forward to how they animate the next two arcs.
*phew* writing it all our made me feel better. Next week, I’ll talk about the manga.