Short Synopsis: Michiko tries to find Hatchin as she’s chased by the police.
Episode Rating: 8,5/10 (Awesome)
Oh, how I love this series. Why must there be only one episode left!?
In any case, this episode was very much about the dark side of Michiko e Hatchin as it prepared for the final episode… and finishes off Satoshi’s storyline. I must say that his time together with Hatchin made a lot of impact on me. Hatchin is such an awesome damsel in distress: while she pretty much got dragged along by Satoshi, she constantly tried to argue with him and run away. Even going as far as trying to throw rocks at the guy when he had his gun pointed at her.
Satoshi’s end was… amazing, but not in the usual way. His development in the end was so incredibly subtle. There was no “zomg look here I did something nice for a change”. She came to him at a time in which he was in trouble and alone as well, there was just his time hanging out with Hatchin, his constant arguing with her, and this one line in which he acknowledged her (when she tried to throw that rock to him). With that, his sacrifice made perfect sense. Anime has a bad track record of making bad-ass punks like him turn soft in an overly cheesy way, but there was no cheese whatsoever in Satoshi’s death. His demise was brutal, there was no crying, overacted sadness or anything. Just a couple of smiling punks that grinned as they finished him off. It’s been a while since I’ve seen such a cold death from one of my favourite characters.
The past two episodes were really about the Hatchin vs. Satoshi, but at the same time Michiko did enough to keep her side of the story busy. Hatchin really has a lot of influence on the people she meets, and the creators did such a wonderful job on making this assumable. Michiko, a woman who is supposed to be on the run instead of hiding focuses on trying to get Hatchin back, throwing herself onto the lions. We’ve seen thus far that the police are not exactly perfect in this series but you don’t want to be walking right into them or you’ll be screwed.
The new policemen also felt like they were supposed to be introduced at this point, not like Samurai Champloo which needed a bunch of villains for its action-packed finale. And oh boy, speaking of which: I was so sure that the creators were going to wait till the next episode to show Hiroshi, and yet the bugger already popped up right now.
The next episode… it really promises to become an amazing one. I love endings which don’t revolve around two extremely powerful people going at it against each other (after all, it’s just too predictable, we’ve seen those things many times before), and in the end it’s going to be a combination of a cat-and-mouse game with the police and that loser of a Hiroshi trying to justify himself in front of his daughter. The interesting thing is of course going to be that Hatchin really doesn’t care about whether she can meet her father or not, but she is essentially trying to find him for Michiko. With Fuu, her journey was pretty much over when she met her father, but for Michiko and Hatchin, there’s a whole more dimension between them and Hiroshi.
At this point, I’d definitely label this series at the top of the season, even above Casshern Sins which in the end didn’t live up to its expectations. Michiko e Hatchin more than did, and I’m SO looking forward to that final episode, and at the same time I’d just wish it were longer. You can pretty much consider me a Manglobe-fanboy at this point. Samurai Champloo and Ergo Proxy already were incredibly good, but Michiko e Hatchin far surpassed them.