Durarara!! – 11
Celty took “standing on buildings in a brooding manner” lessons from The Animated Series-era Batman in this episode.
Pretty good episode here. The reveal of the Dollars members is visually awesome, and I can even forgive it for being more than a bit contrived because of that. (At least it isn’t as silly as the million Zeros from Code Geass R2, haha.) The shift from the grayscale figures to being all colored in is especially cool, and has a fun bit of irony to it since Dollars has been described as “colorless”. Take that, Yellow Scarves and Blue Squares! That’s what you get for having dumber names than “Dollars”.
EDIT: My view of the reveal scene slowly took a shift as I wrote this post, and now, about three hours after initial publishing, I pretty much like it as much as everyone else, contrivances or not. The power of stepping back for a moment or two and thinking. :p
Mikado is plenty badass while standing up to Namie — even if his speech is rightly poked fun at a bit for being a standard sort of speech for this type of dramatic situation — but Celty is the star of this episode, for me. Finally getting close to her head for the first time in 20 years has finally put things into perspective for Celty. She was literally searching for herself, and at the same time moving further away from what she really is. Celty has been stagnant for a hell of a long time. But she gets one of those most beloved of existential epiphanies: That she doesn’t need a past — or a head — to be who she is. And, thus, she unleashes the monster inside. (Cue Celty’s fans all going nuts.)
Now THAT is a monologue! And it’s even complete with a voice! (Side note: How funny would it be if Celty’s phone had voice capabilities, and defaulted to the generic computer voice? That monologue wouldn’t be quite as threatening if it sounded as if it came from Stephen Hawking.) “Hear the cries of those who angered a monster,” indeed. There’s a time to sit around and be moe in pajamas, and there is a time for the rage of the beast. Miyuki Sawashiro is great in general, but she really brings out the big guns here.
You know, anime is making cell phones out to be the most badass technology in history. Sawako’s life is forever changed by her cell phone in Kimi ni Todoke, and Mikado is able to command an Internet army with his cell phones. And both of those pale in comparison to the Selecao phones in Eden of the East. Why isn’t my cell phone that cool? All it does is play the shower scene music from Psycho when I get phone calls.
In all, Mikado is pretty lucky that Namie and her Secret Service agents didn’t get more violent. Obviously it’s common sense to not get violent in that situation because of the numbers and the downside to getting hauled in by the cops, but let’s face it, Namie leaped from the Common Sense Cliff long ago. She was momentarily surprised by Mikado’s plan; however, it was only a matter of time before she regained her bearings and tried something crazy. Mikado had Celty waiting in the wings just in case, of course, but part of the point of the plan was to get her some time alone with Mika, so who knows if she would have been paying attention at that point? Good thing Mikado has nerves of steel now.
(Side note: Dotachin sure gets up to that building in a hurry! Are we sure he doesn’t have any crazy physical powers we don’t know about? Or maybe he just played Final Fantasy VII a lot and absorbed amazing stair-climbing powers via osmosis.)
The origin story of Dollars is about how I expected it to go — Mikado starts it half as a lark, and half as a way to expand beyond the boring confines of his lame town and connect to people who are living lives way different from his own. And then, like a 4chan meme, Dollars spreads everywhere and eventually takes on a life of its own, becoming way more than Mikado ever imagined it would be. Clearly the vast scope of the group is exaggerated for affect, but it reflects something people need — a place to belong, and the Internet can offer that on as vast or as limited a scale as anyone could ever want. I don’t know if Mikado ever expected to find any trace of Dollars in Ikebukuro, but he sure got much more than he ever dreamed he would get.
And Izaya . . . it’s interesting how downplayed he is in this episode. He’s shown in the past to be working with both sides, but it seems to me that there is much more to his playing both sides than we have seen. While he doesn’t seem to be involved in Mika jetting from Mikado’s apartment and running into Dotachin’s crew — I can’t read Japanese, but I would imagine the thread on the Dollars site was a call for her; can anyone who knows the language confirm what the thread was about? — he appears to be hanging back and letting everything play out before entering the game with his own unique brand of chaos.
Couple of more random things to close out the post: The repeated use of the blood red moon to signal shit going down in the best of ways is awesome. Can’t get tired of a symbol like that. And secondly . . .
Best. Crossover. Ever. And how did I never notice the Brains Base building in the ED before this episode??