Posted by psgels on 18 September 2009 with categories: Tokyo Magnitude 8.0



Haha! Another show with a very satisfying ending. This episode was bittersweet, and I think that everyone who managed to keep his/her suspense of disbelief is going to find it an excellent conclusion. In this episode, Mirai comes to terms with what happened to Yuki, she meets her parents, and attempts to continue her life. While most conclusions in anime are a bit lackluster, this episode was in no way inferior to the rest of this amazing series.

But damn, I don’t think that I’ve ever had such a heated discussion going on as for the past few episodes. Personally though, I wasn’t bothered by Mirai’s hallucinations. Instead, I just see this series as fiction, with a very high degree of believability. For me, there were only three points that seemed forced: Mari who just happened to run into her co-worker as she collapsed, the point where Mirai was trying to save the trapped robot and nearly died herself, and the point at which Tokyo Tower nearly collapsed on Mirai but Yuki managed to save her. Nevertheless, in any other show this would just be anal nitpicking.

Thinking back though, the whole Yuki vs. Mirai relationship seems to be much deeper than I originally thought. I mean, we all thought that this would be a series in which the initially bratty Mirai would grow up and take care of her brother. However, this happened already in the second episode. After that, these whole themes reversed, and it was actually Yuki who took care of Mirai; it could be seen as his way to repay Mirai for saving him, he kept her out of danger, he saved her from the Tokyo Tower and the accident with the falling robot. He was the one who tried to cheer her up when she was feeling down.

And even when he died, his hallucination continued this trend: he safely guided her back home, and slowly tried to make her understand that he died. The question remains of course, what the real intention from the creators was. Was the Yuki meant to be taken as symbolism, something like a guardian angel, or did Mirai subconsciously create something that would guide her back home safely until she would be out of danger? Are those options realistic? Nah, not really. Are they believable? For me, they are.

It’s always a bit of a gamble for a series to go into a different direction. The first half of this series was clearly different from the second, as this series changed from a detailed look at how a major city reacts after being hit by a major earthquake, to a character-study of Mirai. In my opinion, these changes can work as long as the new direction has enough to offer, which was definitely the case with this series for me. It was a nice gamble in any case: if the creators would just have continued with the same direction as the first half, we definitely would have gotten a more realistic end, but at the same time, I don’t think that it would have been as memorable of an ending as right now.

Also, on a side-note: I love how the creators actually spent time in creating distinct character-designs for Mirai and her family throughout the years, rather than simply being lazy and just creating a bunch of mini-versions of their characters, like a lot of anime seem to do. Very nice.

Overall, Tokyo Magnitude, as amazing as it was, didn’t end up being my favourite series of 2009. Birdy the Mighty Decode in the end was better for me. It however has a good chance of showing up in my top 5 for this year, unless a lot of really good shows shows happen to air in the upcoming Autumn Season. But for now, let’s just assume that that won’t happen.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

37 Responses

  1. Mike says:

    At the beginning I too thought of the dead Yuki as Mirai’s hallucinations, but as the episodes goes on, and after this final episode, I can’t help but think he is more of a ghost/spirit than a hallucination.

    And yes, this was a rather good ending as well, and I have to admit, a few scenes made me shed some manly tears :P

  2. KamikazeSim says:

    Manly tears came out for me too. Loved the conclusion as it was satisfying.

    Earlier episodes, it didn’t really bother me that they killed off Yuuki but this episode made me feel for their whole family and now I wish he wasn’t killed off.

    The creators did the ending right and now I am going to sleep because it is 5:20am where I am. WORTH STAYING UP FOR!

  3. Smudgeous says:

    A manly tear or two shed here, as well.

    Overall, despite the few moments of the series where events seemed forced, I’m quite impressed with this show. It’s certainly in my top 3 shows of 2009, and the fact that it’s challenging Eden of the East for the #2 spot is quite impressive to me.

    In any event, as soon as Frostii finishes subbing the series, I’ll be certain to rewatch the show with my roommate in tow. These quality anime titles need to have word spread, ya dig?

  4. Tiago Sá says:

    Indeed. Props for the conclusion. It’s a good ending, in the sense that it’s an ending, as opposed to stuff like Elfen Lied, for instance.

    As for the ghost/hallucination thing, are hallucinations technically ghosts?

    As for the manly tears, the tears were there, but they never went across my face… It’s emotional, for sure, but if you take a step back you realize it’s not really THAT uncommon or tragic. That’s life…

    But well done, nonetheless.

  5. fireryone says:

    Being a 23 yo male I didn’t think this show would actually get a (manly) tear out of me, but it did……. amazing.

    The Yuki ghost/hallucination didn’t bother me at all either, as they did it in a realistic enough way.

    (if anyone didn’t find and eng sub a stream is on watchanimeon.com)

  6. Paulo Guerreiro says:

    A very good ending for a very good series. And a hello to Tiago Sá, whom I presume to be portuguese like me.

  7. Tiago Sá says:

    Indeed. Olá Paulo :)

  8. Etrangere says:

    I cried too, but I’m not a man, what does that make of my tears? Womanly or manly? Silly expression. :p

    I was satisfied with this ending yeah. The show fostered very high expectation, and wasn’t quite up to meeting them but it only failed them by a little, with a couple of weak episodes in the middle and a bit too much pathos for pathos’ sake for my taste, but it was still a very good show, with great characterisation of Mirai, and one of the best of this season.

    I like the fact we don’t know if Yuuki’s properly a hallucination or a ghost. That works better that way.

  9. AlexS says:

    So far my favorite of this year. Hope the next season can beat that, but I’m not holding my breath…

    Muita portuguesada por aqui ^_^

  10. Meep says:

    I cried my EYES out. Tokyo Magnitude is the first anime in a long while that I rated a 10/10, that’s for sure.

    I really loved this episode. Especially the part that showed Yuuki and Mirai’s past in flashbacks. Psgels you did an excellent job blogging T.M. as well as on your response in the final review. =]

  11. ahbonk says:

    Loved how they spent valuable time on ending the show, unlike many other anime series. Shed manly tears too, if u wanna call it that :P

  12. Ken says:

    Being an older sibling, growing up with a bratty but aloof little brother, having parents that were always too busy, and having experienced personal loss not far removed from Mirai’s, this show realistically hit home in a way that at the least, is incredibly rare in all media, let alone anime. I might have been projecting feelings onto the characters, but for a show to even allow that kind of empathy is amazing to me.

    I liked that Yuuki faded after Mirai came home and met her mom. She’d seen the whole city in ruins, and seen death and despair the entire time, but once she saw her home in shambles and her mother bawling her eyes out, she couldn’t maintain the illusion any longer and the entirety of reality finally fell down on her like a bag of bricks. I took the illusion of Yuuki much less as the crazies or a guardian angel, and much more so the emotional need of an immature character dealing with monumental loss to survive and give herself reason to continue. I know that when you loose someone and feel hopeless despair, sometimes the only things that keep you going is thinking, “so-and-so would have wanted me to continue going.”

  13. foamer says:

    I liked the ending even though it was heart-breaking but now Mirai will become much stronger because of it. I also liked the ‘life goes on’ pictures of all the characters we saw before in the series, that was interesting.

  14. Denizen says:

    Manly tears were shed.

    Awesome anime.

  15. Polaryzed says:

    I made the mistake of watching this at work at lunch time. I turned into a sobbing, blubbering fool. Thank kami-sama that almost everyone else was out to lunch.

    I LOVED this series for most of the reasons already given here. I’d be thrilled if we could get a series like this once a season.

    And sorry Psgels, but Birdy didn’t hold a candle to a series like this IMO. You have to hand it to a show that basically tells you how its gonna end before it actually does, nevertheless the viewer still gets an emotional punch in the stomach anyway. Fantastic.

  16. m says:

    The Yuuki ghost angle didn’t appeal to me at all, but it’s well beyond the point where I care; they could have tossed in a dragon or two, and it would still have averaged out to be a good story.

    Mari’s contribution to the final episode was really brief, but they didn’t exactly have a lot of time to spend on her without subtracting from the sentimentality of Yuuki. Since the way they budgeted their time worked so well, I can’t complain.

    I also thought it was a nice touch that they included snapshots of the other people they met while on their journey as well. Mirai’s mother even finally received a round birthday cake.

  17. Ken says:

    I’m not very familiar with Tokyo’s geography, but I looked on the show’s official website and they walked some order of 14 or so miles. Holy shit!

  18. evolstar says:

    Well I’m glad to see that I wasn’t the only one bawling my eyes out! I can’t remember the last time I’ve cried so much for an anime!

    The ending was so satisifying for me. I loved how in the end we see that Yuuki was looking after her and made sure she got home. This series and Phantom are my favorites so far this year. Heck, this show is up there with my favorite series of all time.

  19. meow says:

    Guaranteed tear-jerker. I’m glad I was alone when I watched it. I had to stop the show around the part Yuuki told Maari he loved her to regain enough composure to continue. I cried again towards the end of the hospital scene, and then again when Mari was with Mirai in Yuuki’s room and THEN AGAIN when Mari gave their mom the belated birthday gift. It’s an awesome show….but I really don’t want to watch it again. XD Ah I think I need some Hayate or Sergeant Geroro or K-ON now. Anyway, when you’re letting your friends watch it, be sure to have some tissue handy.

  20. dickens says:

    Mari’s return in this episode reminded me of her existence. Why did she suddenly lose all interest in a delusional Mirai whose brother just died again? Did I miss something?

  21. psgels psgels says:

    dickens: what do you mean? didn’t episode 9 show that she had to take care of her grandmother because the hospital was understaffed? I suspected that even though she wanted to go, she had to take care of her family first.

  22. Ves says:

    The most emotional part for me was when Mirai finally met her mom… if it was me meeting my family after not knowing whether they’re alive for several days, I’d cry many rivers. Mirai’s mama seemed a bit too calm to me in the after-one-month part, but I guess one can also say she’s trying to be strong for Mirai.

    @dickens: lol, I did wonder slightly about that too. But logically, she had no other relatives to rely on and has to look after her aging mom and young child, so it’d be weird to simply leave them aside to find Mirai. With other families trying to cope with the disaster too, it might seem kind of rude to throw the responsibility to Mari’s neighbours or friends ;)

  23. dickens says:

    I realize that, but as Mari, here you have this girl you’ve been helping, whose brother died and now has gone asylum-insane seeing his ghost wandering around Tokyo alone….I dunno, I just didn’t expect her to just be written out of the show until the reunion in this episode. Seems kind of weak.

    There was some good writing in this episode. Overall it was a decent finish, and I really think if they had avoided the cliches plaguing the last few episodes, this series could have been a classic.

  24. Snowolf says:

    I don’t think I’ve bawled over something like this ever. I was crying my heart out, and that’s something worth praising for as I’m usually very stoic and critical.

    Tokyo Magnitude? Thanks for being there. This is one of reasons why anime are so good. It was an unbelievable, strong, sweet and sad ending which was totally worth the wait. 12/10 for me on this one.

  25. John says:

    I’ve never cried so much watching a film or TV show… in fact I reckon this is the most I’ve ever cried. It was a good series but I don’t ever want to watch it again. Too depressing. Poor Yuuki :-‘(

  26. Android18a says:

    I think this is the first anime which ever truly made me cry. I’d just about held it together before now, but episode 11 just did me in. The entire second half of the episode was viewed past streams of tears.

    How can a fictional story affect our emotions so much? I think the creators of this anime did a wonderful job of bringing out the human elements of the characters.

    I loved this series so much. I think I might have to recover a bit before I can watch it through again though.

    Part of me was really, really hoping it was all just a dream.

  27. Jordan says:

    My only question is WHEN in the timeline did Yuki die? I’ve been trying to figure it out.. some say during the Tokyo Tower incident and some say around episode 9.

  28. Sacchi says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1U0AT3JQbM

    Skip to 0:33. That’s when he starts to die. He basically dies in episode 8/9.

  29. shogun22 says:

    I felt the hallucination (more like a ghost aparition) was a bit out of place in a series that was mostly realsitic. Episode 11 felt like a supernatural-drama.
    But overall it was a good series.

  30. Brad says:

    Excellent series. Some of the melodrama feels forced at times, but despite that it still works – probably because of the believability of it all. Mirai and Mari are great characters that are very easy to care about, while Yuki is really just a plot device… but for a series as short as this one, I don’t think Yuki’s character could have been done any differently without lessening the emotional impact of the story. The sense of loss is palpable, and I cried. OK, I bawled. A lot.

    I wish more anime series were like this.

  31. tazman0208 says:

    A real tearjerker this episode was and more than a “few” manly tears were shed, Especially the little montage of different scenes in the life of the Onozawa family. This was a great ending to a great series.

  32. Lue says:

    Indeed the suspense was not lost on me. I cried like a pussy. There was nothing manly about my tears. This show had me by the balls and took no prisoners.

  33. Soaks says:

    Regarding the whole ghost thing, it reminded me of a (true) story my father had once shared with us.

    It was that of a boy who apparently drowned in a river here in town because of a raging storm. The next day, the boy, supposedly dead, managed to show up in school wearing muddy rain boots, and even spent the entire day like normal. It wasn’t until a few days later that the school received news of the boy’s death. When his father learned how his son, after dying, still managed to “go” to school, he cried hard enough to destroy a dam, subliminally thinking why his son hadn’t shown himself to his family instead.

    That story makes me believe that Yuuki is in fact showing himself as a ghost and Mirai isn’t exactly hallucinating – at least, not fully since ghosts can technically be hallucinations as well. Plus it’s understandable if Mirai is withdrawing in denial. So I guess it’s half-half, though I’m leaning more on the ghost side, personally. It’s just that, saying ‘hallucinations’ denotes that Mirai has lost her mind and is merely talking to herself, as opposed to actually speaking with Yuuki’s ghost – his consciousness. Supernatural doesn’t necessarily translate to unrealistic, in this case. I really hate making a point using the term ‘realistic,’ but it’s believable enough. Just nitpicking.

    Finally, I was a bit drowsy while watching the show (I’m almost a year late, I know) and had half-expected it to end all happy with no one dying (at least in the main cast). I’m glad I was wrong, and I’m satisfied with how it all turned out.

    Gonna be a while before I move on from this. I need to watch something lighthearted and funny.

  34. Cookies says:

    I love this show but i really hate how they killed yuuki. Why didnt they kill mirai instead!!!! Cried alot too. But ugh stupid producers had to kill yuuki.. He was my favorite character.. Booo!!

  35. starblacks says:

    I have never ever ever cried for anything fictional, but i couldn’t stop my tears the whole last episode. Thank you Tokyo Magnitude 8.0, for giving me belief again that anime can be truely moving.

  36. Not buthurt that Yuuki died says:

    So I just marthoned this show, and took a look at the comments for the last few episodes, and really the only reason why people actually started not liking the show was because they were really upset at Yuki Dying, even going gas far to say stupid shit like “people don’t hallucinate dead people” uh. . yeah they do (having had experience with a family member who did the same thing). One thing I really like, was the scene in yuuki;s classroom. where it had the Kanji on the board.

    The Kanji on the board was: ”未来” Meaning “Future” the thing that got me about that scene was that the pronunciation is “MIRAI” (the main character’s name) and the way it was posted on the board multiple times (usually its done once by each student for Kanji/caligaraphy learning/writing practice) was really powerful. I was imagining that the proliferation of her name on that board was like a message being constantly pinged to Mirai. . .

    The whole Yuuki issues and mirai seeing yuuki after he died is not something that can be criticized on since, that stuff DOES HAPPEN (people seeing dead loved ones etc etc) so its not a big stretch that mirai went through all of that too, being that she’s 13(first year junior high student), saw all of those horrific images during the show, and experienced a lot of shock-worthy things.

    The ONLY thing that would be a valid point of criticism, was that Tokyo wasn’t Damaged more than they portrayed. . .they Kinda got around it by saying that Naka-Meguro was really hit hard; which is be accurate as that area is a deathtrap if an earthquake hit. . .I used to live in Naka-Meguro for a year and a half and in Tokyo for Five years, so I know what I’m talking about (recently moved back a couple weeks ago. . .I also lived in Ventral Tokyo during the 9.0 quake that hit Tohoku)

    but yeah, being that I know the city like the back of my hand if an 8.0 earthquake hit Tokyo in Tokyo bay, at a depth of only 25km. . . .

    The death toll would be in the millions. . .MILLIONS!

    They did address subtly though the fact that the media will NOT actually tell you how bad conditions/damage are in a crisis. During the Fukushima incident, the government and news were saying that Tokyo was safe during the 2-3 days the fukushima cloud wafted over Tokyo when the winds changed, I assure you it was not . . .I knew people in the U.S. Military who told me to evacuate since they took their own separate readings of the radiation, the french tracked and confirmed this. so I had to go down to Osaka for about two weeks before I was sure everything was alright. none of that stuff was told to anyone on the news or radio.

    but yeah an earthquake of that strength hitting Tokyo bay like that, would WIPE OUT that city. . . .

    Also the aftershocks. There would be CONSTANT, STRONG after shocks like 6-7+ intensity for MONTHS on End! (There are still aftershocks from the Tohoku quake occurring almost two years after!) I know they toned that down for the sake of the story, as realistically Odaiba WOULD sink and the kids would most likely be dead in the first 20-30 minutes of the show. . . but then there wouldn’t be a show! So I have to give a pass on that. (the aftershocks would most likely kill and damage many more times more than the initial quake.)

    anyway those are the ONLY sources of criticism that really can be pointed at this show without said criticizer sounding like a retard for being butthurt their character died and not knowing what they’re talking about.

    Oh wait, one more. . .Tokyo Tower falling down, yeah that scene should have killed those kids. Tokyo tower is HUUUUUGE! everyone in that park could have died if Tokyo tower really fell on it, It’s THAT big

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  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 07:10 AM)
    Seeing Hoffman in before the devil knows your dead and his character being dependent on drugs, that was another thing that hit me a bit knowing the circumstances of his death. Watching most wanted man I could also see that he was wearing out physically.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 07:00 AM)
    This is not Anno bitching about otakus jacking off to his characters and turning around and selling Rei panties, this isn’t the idiots at Shaft throwing around meaningless camera angles and the oh-so-symbolic teeth brushing scenes, this is a human being looking you in the eye with fear and telling you that he’s dying; morbid, honest, moving and remarkable.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:55 AM)
    Given my rants regarding Birdman it should be clear that I’m a sucker for these rare instances where the line between movie and reality get blurred- when an actor looks at a camera and just bares their heart out. This is the realism that reality tv tried but could never capture. this is art in one of its most sincere forms.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:50 AM)
    Oh yeah Hoffman was a massive talent and a beloved actor, so I don’t take it lightly when I call Synecdoche his greatest role ever. Given his death and knowing the circumstances of his life at the time imbues this performance with a chilling sincerity that just breaks your heart and leaves you in awe.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:42 AM)
    Oh Andrew Niccol, oh how the mighty have fallen.
    Hoffman showed up in Capote and most wanted man, the latter which I especially love and there need to be more thrillers of that vein coming out.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:37 AM)
    It’s funny how they also each have a Nicolas Cage movie. Kaufman has Adaptation and Niccol has Lord of War. Although despite the usual Cage antics neither of those movies is really that bad.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:33 AM)
    Eternal Sunshine and The Truman Show are the two roles where Jim Carrey really demonstrated his acting chops well outside of his usual comfort zone. But Kaufman moved forward from Sunshine with the superior Synecdoche, while Andrew Niccol went from doing Truman Show and Gattaca to doing young adult garbage like The Host *wretches*
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:28 AM)
    @Emma: yeah you’ll most likely enjoy it. On the surreàl scale it lies somewhere between Birdman and Holy Mountain, so although it’s peppered with symbolic imagery and thematic shots it’s still a personal story about a man’s struggle when faced with his own demise. Although a lofty statement, this is in my onion philip seymour hoffman’s best performance, and his untimely death adds another incredibly rich level of nuance to this movie.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:20 AM)
    @Bam: Adaption, Nicholas Cage =< a guilty pleasure actor to watch for the most part and little more.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Jan 31. 2015 06:12 AM)
    @Bam: The more you mentiom Synecdoche, the more interested I get. Malcovich was a creative idea for a film and Eternal sunshine was a good spin on the romance genre which gave Jim Carrey a film worth acting in.
    Riki-oh if anything is just a heck of alot of fun.

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