Durarara!! 18 – Izaya Is a Dick
Seriously, what a dick. Even Superman would frown upon that behavior.
That said, he’s also an impressive dick. (Though whether he has an impressive dick is not for me to say.) Whenever a villain pops up and does his or her whole Chessmaster routine, what always stands out to me is the amount of patience required to play out those plans step by step. I am patient when working with other people; however, when it comes to personal plans, patience is a word that does not exist in my vocabulary. I’m always on edge when working on something. I try my best to be thoughtful, of course, but lurking just below the surface there’s this manic energy propelling me to finish everything I write as quickly as possible. Can’t help it; it’s the way I’m wired. (Kind of ironic, too, since it usually takes me a while to write these posts. :p)
The sheer scope of Izaya working Ikebukuro’s finest astounds me. There is a tendency with these Chessmaster types to read everything as being all part of a grand plan; to view every detail — significant or not — as somehow a part of the Larger Plan, as if the planners are mind readers or are just so fantastic at improvisation that switching plots on the fly is but a trifle. As Izaya admits, he cannot control everything; sometimes, people will do things that are completely out of his hands, and the best he can do is roll with the punches. But that does not mean he cannot exercise a decent amount of control. Where does it start, though?
This episode’s timeline stretches back a year to when Kida was in neck deep with his gang, the Yellow Scarves, who were battling at the time with the Blue Squares. Saki Mikajima approaches Kida and befriends him, and also innocuously introduces Izaya to him. Like most people, Kida takes an instant dislike to Izaya; he gives off such a foul, untrustworthy aura. But he likes Saki immediately, so he goes along with it, and that is all Izaya needs.
Who is Saki? Just some girl Izaya met on the street and decided to use? Is she someone Izaya has known for a long time? The scariest part of her relationship with Izaya is that those questions are of no consequence. She is clearly meaningless to Izaya — as the phone scene shows — except as a means to get . . . what, exactly? Has his current plan started by this time, or is he simply trying to acquire more influence? The way this part of Izaya’s plan works is that he makes himself so thoroughly useful that Kida builds an unwilling dependence on him, and then it appears that he abandons Kida entirely, all in the name of chaos. I find it difficult to believe that with everything Izaya knows that he wouldn’t be aware of the kidnapping.
Hell, it would not be surprised if he orchestrated it himself. Getting one’s leg broken is not quite as bad as jumping off a cliff, but as far as totally insane signs of utterly bonkers levels of devotion go, it is up there. So, Izaya has Kida under his thumb, but it’s difficult to see his true purpose in this, or if such a purpose even exists in the first place.
But here’s something to think about: Izaya knew Shinra and met Shizuo all the way back in high school. Correct me if I’m wrong (my memory is worse than the dude from Zaregoto), but I seem to remember Izaya and Shizuo meeting Celty while they were still in high school. (Maybe it was during Shizuo’s episode?) And, again, correct me if I am wrong, but is it ever said how long Izaya has known Shinra? Or, to extend the thought, how long he has known Celty? A bit of research, the gears start turning and boom! Insta-plan. Who knows how long he has been acquainted with Namie? They probably did not meet by accident, that’s for sure.
That’s a long time to plan, and a lot of patience put into one goal. Certainly something I could never match. And Izaya is finally ready to pour gas on the flames he has cultivated.
After this episode, however, I am more open to Rakuen’s assertion that Dotachin’s crew is a potential wild card in the fight against Izaya. Every little bit helps. Plus, the ability to make cool speeches will surely aid in the mighty final battle. Mikado will need that since he blows so much at the art of speech himself.