I love how this episode had lots of different focuses, instead of just spending all of its twenty minutes on Near. I’m really glad to see that despite its bugs in the middle, the ending is shaping up to be something really good. This episode also introduced lots of questions, which actually can all be resolved in the final four episodes.
Near, while silent in the previous episode, finds out quite a few things in the current one: all of Light’s plans, up to the end of the previous episode. Now all that’s left is for him to catch the him, though Light isn’t sitting still either, as Near was arrogant enough to inform Kira that he knows all about him. Light’s plan was to turn Mikami in yet another decoy. He would walk around with a fake Death Note, while Takada cleans the world of criminals with five pages of the Death Note she received. At the end of the episode, we get a small demonstration of how well this works, when Mikami seemingly kills someone in front one of Near’s henchmen, while he in fact made a phone call to Takada, who really killed him. But then again, it probably won’t take long for Near to figure out about this as well. What’s going to be your next step, Light?
Near also showed something very interesting this episode, apart from his doll fetish: he thinks that L would never use murder in order to solve his cases. He never knew that L was actually about to use human lives as a guinea-pigs for his investigations. Heck, he never knew that L’s very first move on Kira was made possible by the sacrifice of Lind L Taylor.
Another surprising focus of this episode was Misa. I believed that she was just written out of the show when she lost her memories, but she’s actually still important to the plot. I’m not sure how, but her little date with Takada must mean that something is going to happen to her in the future. I was quite surprised by all the things Misa said while drunk, and on second watch I realized this too was all a plan by Light. I first thought that this was meant for Takada to give Misa her memories back, but it was actually to confuse Near, since Takada had one of her bodyguards, whom she knew was one of Near’s henchmen standing right next to her. The question remains: why was this necessary?
Another question: what has Mello been up to?