Posted by psgels on 28 June 2009 with categories: Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Rei


Pure awesomeness. I really have to say, that this OVA couldn’t have been done better. These past three episodes were right up there with the most memorable moments from the Higurashi series. I’d definitely rank this among the best OVAs I have ever seen, along with Rurouni Kenshin Tsuioku-hen and Hunter X Hunter’s OVA. All of them were just incredible: intelligent, inspired and focused.

Most of this episode was just lots of dialogue, but that’s exactly what I liked about it. Rika, who was tortured with the choice whether or not to kill her mother, and abandon the world in which nobody was plagued by sin. This exactly showed the irony of good endings: sure, you may have everything happening perfectly; you may have nobody suffering from the past, and deeply haunted by some of the wrong decisions they made, and that were made for them. But does that make them better persons?

It may all have just been a dream by Hanyuu, but who cares? Thinking back it made sense: how else would Hanyuu have known about the fate of everyone who wasn’t there? The way Rika let herself go and get caught up in the accident really showed her how she has unconsciously taken her own death and rebirth for granted, and how she began to forget how important her mother was.

If I had to mention a down-side, then it was the continuity error of Keiichi’s sin. In the original series, Keiichi’s sin was left out, and I had to read about it in the Higurashi TIPS, about how he ran around with the plastic gun. Those who haven’t read the TIPS will probably feel left out a bit, because that event was crucial to why this episode was so incredibly powerful. It’s still a shame that we never got to see that scene animated, by the way. It would have been damn intense.

In any case, Umineko no Naku Koro ni is about to begin now, and even though I’ve heard that it’s going to be completely different from Higurashi, I’m really looking forward to it, because 07th Expansion has shown himself to be an incredible writer. My only concern is going to be Chiaki Kon; I’m not sure whether she is the right person for this series. Especially considering how she’s also currently working on Hanasakeru Seishounen, and considering the mess that that turned into. On the other hand, Toshifumi Kawase is returning for the series composition. I absolutely love what this guy has been doing for the past few years (he was the one who directed the Higurashi Rei OVA), so perhaps he was the biggest reason why Higurashi was the only thing that didn’t disappoint out of Chiaki Kon’s work.

Rating: *** (Awesome)
Amazing conclusion to an already amazing OVA.

8 Responses

  1. Firechick says:

    But wait! Isn’t there supposed to be a 5th episode of this coming out later?

  2. Brazil says:

    Actually Keichi’s past was revealed in Rena’s arc of the first season.

  3. psgels psgels says:

    Firechick: yeah, but that’s going to be another comedy episode, which has nothing to do with the previous three episodes.

    Brazil: really? They showed the part in which Keiichi shot that little girl in the eye? I don’t remember that part being in the anime.

  4. vic says:

    The ovas of Saikoroshi-hen were amazing, the adaptation from the visual was extremely well done for the first time, rei is a good example of a great adaptation
    OVA 5 is daybreak a comedy episode that is not part of the main history is something lol.

  5. Westlo says:

    Mr Gels… you give the Chiaki Kon directed Higurashi the following score.

    Higurashi no Naku Koro ni – (TV) – 91/100

    And now you’re not sure she is the right person for the job? FFS I just have to /facepalm.

    Anyway it’s not like they can fuck up Umineko no Naku Koro ni anyway since it’s utterly brilliant. It also has a massive advantage over the first Higuarashi adaption. Only 4 arcs are out and they will follow it to a tee since they know they will make a sequel.

    With higur season 1 is was blatantly obvious they weren’t going to make a sequel. They rushed through 6 arcs so they could get some sort of end and cut a lot of stuff. Than they released it was popular and season 2 was a go.

    Umineko is brilliant and has something that takes it to another level over Higur, that is Beatrice.

  6. Wyrdwad says:

    psgels: They didn’t actually show WHAT Keiichi did, but they showed that he did SOMETHING awful involving a weapon of some sort, and that that was the reason for his transfer.

    -Tom

  7. Couldn’t agree with you more. Rei was perfect, and possibly the best arc of Higurashi. I’m still in shock at how great this little extra chapter turned out. Ryukishi07 (writer) is brilliant, and I can’t wait for Umineko. Good thing I don’t have to, as it starts very soon!

    Finally, if I remember correctly, they never explicitly show what K1 did, but they do allude to it. I’m not sure how many of the details they fill in, but I certainly got the point when it came up in this OVA.

  8. Solaris says:

    Aww~ so it was all some dream by Hanyuu. I would have liked to watch the true choice Rika would have done. That would have been dramatic!

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  • Bam
    (Monday, May 25. 2015 05:54 AM)
    The episode was alright and felt dense as I watched it, but in hindsight only really moved the plot forward incrementally. Lancer not untying Tohsaka as soon as he killed Kirei and then not killing Shinji when he clearly had the chance left a bad taste in my mouth. That and Shirou’s heavy plot armor at this point is becoming reminiscent of another famous anime dual-wielder. Not a compliment.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 25. 2015 05:46 AM)
    UBW 20 felt like another rendition of Eva 26 (Take care of yourself), complete with character analysis, battle with one’s Jungian Shadow, and loosely Buddhist ideas of self-actualization. It even featured the repetitive monologue shots that fade to black (with “I saw Hell” instead of Rei’s “Sky. Red, red sky”). It never went as far as Eva with “which way is up?” type of Soliloquy, but that’s probably a good thing.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:48 AM)
    Ashura was an excellent example of how to through anime illicit and emotional response in an honest, non-melodramatic way.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:46 AM)
    @Bam: I’d be more than happy to take a look at some of those shorts anytime.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:44 AM)
    @Emma: there’s a lot of European animators that got active in the last 10 years or so that are really reinvigorating their animation scene, and every now and then I get introduced to some fabulous shorts.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:40 AM)
    @Emma: no I don’t really mind gory ‘for the fuck of it’ violence, I even like it in some grindhouse type of works, but I just don’t think it’s always effective as a shock factor. Live-action is the most sympathetic for obvious reasons, but there are animated works that do elicit a deep response. Probably because of circumstances but also the details of the in-between animation, which can induce certain feelings of disgust.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:39 AM)
    *here and there
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:35 AM)
    @Bam: I really wish there was more arthouse anime now to give some kind of a balance to everything thats out these days.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:33 AM)
    Now I like my exploitation every so often, but yes Bam I really do wish that adult and mature storytelling could be better associated with truly, more pure mature themes.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:25 AM)
    I get choked up over Bergmans cries and whisper and Autumn sonata, I look back on a work by Key and Jun Maeda and wonder, think of how silly it looks to me now.

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