Posted by psgels on 18 June 2010 with categories: Durarara



Ah, so the creators are going into an anime original ending. My opinion of those kinds of endings is simple: as long as it works, I don’t mind. Although of course in the past creators have shown that adapting a story and writing an original can be completely different (I think Claymore is the most notable example of this). But, here this series has the odds in favour of it: Takahiro Omori‘s endings have got an excellent track record. Baccano ended wonderfully, even though the source material continued on, Jigoku Shoujo always had excellent endings in which everything came together, and Fancy Lala had the single best ending of any mahou shoujo ever.

But Durarra… its ending is a bit more nuanced. You can see that a lot of thoughts went into it, but it lacks refinement. Here’s what I mean:
– I really liked how in this episode Mikado explained why he decided to shut down the Dollars. A surprisingly solid reason and gamble of him. The fighting didn’t stop immediately, but I doubt that he was just thinking in the short term. Unfortunately, he did not explain why he refused to answer Kida’s calls.
– I liked how the adults here set the children in their place, the chemistry between Celty, Anri, Shinra and Shizuo was well done, it was subtle, developed the story and was very interesting to watch. The conversation between Simon and Kida however… that was just too one-sided.
– The twist that the Blue Squares were the ones who took over the yellow scarves was actually quite interesting. It gives a reason to those random attacks they’ve been making beyond “ZOMG dollars sucks”. On the other hand… what were the creators thinking with that fight? Why can Kida easily kick away guys twice his size, and only after ten or so guys does he give up? I know that such an iron bar can hit hard and all, but it’s thugs he’s dealing with. These guys should know how to fight. I also did not like how they stood there like sheep while Kida was having a nice talk. And even during the fight, most of them just did nothing. Yeah, that’s a good idea, attack just one at a time.

Nevertheless, those are just details. What about the bigger picture? There, I can see where the creators are going here. They’re continuing the path of the flawed characters. They made Mikado more naive (seriously, I’ve seen quite a few webmasters pulling some weird drama that makes shutting down the Dollars just seem like nothing special) to let everything spiral out of control like what was originally hinted at. It decided to focus on the fact that the characters are teenagers, in the way that they have good ideas, but at the same time can’t quite see all of the consequences of their actions and don’t always take the smartest way out.

I suspected this way earlier, and with series that focus on flawed characters, it’s really hard to make your audience care about them compared to the flawless and charismatic ones. For me, it was especially Kida who got in the way and made me lose interest. This episode actually used Celty as a catalyst very effectively to develop Mikado a bit, in the same way that she took care of Anri.

The final episode is going to be very important for this series. I really want to see a good conclusion here, when the creators went out of their way to create a new one, eliminating any chance for a possible sequel. Kida is about to develop out of his angsty self. If the creators can get his character-development in the final episode right (and I really mean make something memorable out of it), then I feel like I’ll be able to forgive a bit of the disappointment of the second half of this series.
Rating: * (Good)

12 Responses

  1. Serpit says:

    Wait, where are you getting this stuff about ana nime original ending from? Did you read the novels? It’s just that I haven’t heard anyone else make any such remarks.

    Also, Kida was apparently even more ridiculous in the source material. Here, he went down pretty fast. Also, his weapon was not a crowbar, but a… nail clipper.

  2. Roger says:

    His weapon was a nailpuller. you know the iron ones, not the ones on your finger. But yeah, noel Kida was even more heinous. But this is Narita, we see people get onesidedly slaughtered with bare hands all the time in Baccano!, this is set in the same universe. Anyway, this episode actually put us back on track towards the same ending to the third light novel, so I dunno where you are getting your info.

  3. Roger says:

    Anyway, I have to say psgels, I had the opposite impression of the interaction this episode. A big gripe I had ever since 17 is, we’ve been hyped by these three kids secretly actually being badass abnormals/gang leader even though they looked like kids. Bur this plot came down to the kids leading the city down the path of war because the adults (Celty, Shinra, Shizuo) weren’t telling them everything. Making it a double subversion, they are stupid kids. This episode redeemed that, Celty doesn’t fault Mikado’s solution, and leaves it up to him, Kida I guess finally remembered he used to have friends in the Yellow Scarves.

  4. c160 says:

    Hopefully it won’t end with an anime original ending :( Saw some character designs of the characters in the later novels,and I really wanna know their stories!

    On to the episode itself,does anyone else think the fights are becoming less and less creative??I mean the action scenes were really short and boring this time around..And god I hate it too when people just stand there and let their opponent go on yapping when they have a perfectly good chance to kill their opponent…More so in this episode where by Kida actually was able to get really close to Horoda without even so much of an oppositon..

  5. Ransom says:

    Is it really anime original?

    I haven’t read the novels myself, but from what I read online, they have kinda more or less follow things up to now…

    I just hope for a second season any time soon, contrary to what most people might say, I actually enjoyed this as much as Baccano.

  6. Buddy Waters says:

    This is how the novel ended. As novels do, it had a solid conclusion. There will be no anime original ending. There is no need for one. The novel ending provides a satisfying stopping place; a few threads are still active, but this first set of stories reaches a conclusion of sorts here.

  7. reyan16 says:

    this is definitely not an anime original ending. they’re actually ending it exactly the same way the novel did and i’m actually excited about one part. the part with simon and izaya ;)

  8. Puran says:

    Oh come on. It’s hard to care about flawed characters?

    People care because they can relate. If you can only care about perfect/charismatic characters then you really have a high opinion of yourself (not really trying to be rude, just pointing out why I think what you said is not really logical).

    Then again I really liked the characters in Welcome to the NHK.

  9. psgels psgels says:

    Ack, so it went back on track again? I thought that because of the anime original parts of the previous two episodes that the creators were building up to their own kind of ending, but apparently I was wrong…

    oh andPuran: let me rephrase that: I didn’t mean your usual flawed characters, but incredibly flawed characters. You know, the kinds that don’t stop whining and don’t try to be likable at all. The lead characters here were the leaders of groups that turned an entire city into a war field. It’s harder for me to care about them compared to, say, Ookiku Furikabutte, in which the cast is still flawed, yet there’s this goal that all of the characters are working for that’s keeping them together. I hope that I made my point a bit clearer with this.

  10. theone says:

    Sigh, I would hope for a second and third season to go through the novels, Just mainly becuase of Mikado. . .

    he becomes VERy badass in a really different way, but hes basically been my fave char throught the series,

  11. Puran says:

    psgels: okay yeah I understand now, there is a fine line somewhere were flawed characters turn from sympathetic to annoying. I guess kida has crossed that line in the last few episodes.

  12. Gavin says:

    This ep presented a welcome break to the holding pattern that has been the past 3-4 eps. Characters finally face eachother, finally learn what we (the audience) have known for a while and deal with it.

    but you are right. the last ep will make or break the series. It’s either another Gurren Laggen (where I reject the second half of the series) or a perfect egg through and through. here’s to hoping!

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  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 08:38 AM)
    Jesus I never expected that doing a myanimelist/letterboxd account thing would be so hard. I’ve seen a scarily higher amount than I thought, its insanely hard to remember everything to add.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 06:17 AM)
    It seems then that the future of the franchise’s anime adaptations rests a bit on Schwarzesmarken’s success, which looking at the buzz doesn’t seem favourable at all. I doubt it can regain the lost audiences.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 06:14 AM)
    That would suggest that the author(s) had the foresight of including seemingly useless stuff that will come into play later. That’d be impressive if they did, as these kinda series are make-it-as-you-go.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 01:59 AM)
    It’s difficult to put into words but essentially while the first game isn’t good, it does work as a tool for introducing and endearing you to the characters. Then Unlimited sets down the rules of the new world. And finally alternative proceeds to kick your ass into next Tuesday.
    That’s sort of why I don’t think it would have the same effect if it was an anime. VNs allow you to get a more personal connection with the characters.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 01:55 AM)
    It’s not quite the same. It’s more like there are things in extra which seem insignificant but turn out to play an important role later. It wouldn’t really work the same if you did it in reverse order. Character history is a bit different too as each game is essentially an alternate universe. The character histories in extra are different from those in alternative.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:38 PM)
    And also remember how Darker Than Black had a big jump between the main series and Gemini of the Meteor. They later made a 4 episode OVA that covered the gap, and although you knew the outcome it was still entertaining; or at least more than the Gemini one. There’s merit to non-linear chronology and storytelling, but it is usually very hard to pull. The audience is intrigued by secrets that can later be uncovered, although in anime the pay-off is not always substantial.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:32 PM)
    I don’t know, the audience usually only needs very limited information to figure out dynamics and histories between the characters.
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:27 PM)
    A 13 episode series would work for the second title unlimited. But Alternative is a pretty long visual novel. You need at least two cours to give it justice. Making extra an OVA could work but you do need it for alternative. But it’s not an optional part of the trilogy. It needs to be read first, so that events later have a greater impact. Personally I am not even sure Muv Luv can even work in another medium.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:12 PM)
    That might compress things, but I think a good screen-writer can fit pretty much any VN in 12-14 episodes (covering just the main route).
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:07 PM)
    @Aidan: then the best solution would’ve been to make a two cour season covering the 2nd and the 3rd book. Have the cours air two anime seasons apart, and in the middle have an offshoot short OVA that covers the 1st book, but has a more harem comedy feel to it. Think Full Metal Panic and Fumuffu.

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