Posted by psgels on 26 June 2010 with categories: Yojou-han Shinwa Taikei



This episode was brilliant, there’s no other way to it. it’s THE proof that this very much was a series that was building up to its conclusion right from the beginning, and now that everything is coming together, it has just surpassed itself. It’s without a doubt my favourite episode of Yojou-han so far. Really, out of all the endings this season, I’m looking forward to the final episode of this series the most.

So in this episode we were promised that finally Watashi would break through the tradition of joining random clubs and pushing reset buttons, but I’m very pleasantly surprised with how he actually did it. Instead of running after a whimsical dream, he just gives up. He spends god knows how long in his own room, and eventually he ends up trapped in a maze full of endless parallel worlds of this room.

I loved how the creators portrayed Watashi and his confusion as he tried to make sense of his situation. It’s interesting how he just doesn’t speak in this episode aside from just one line: all we hear are just some grunts and his inner monologues, which seemed to be wittier and more descriptive than ever here. Especially the scenes in which he just tried to waste time were priceless in how down to earth they were.

In the end, this indeed is a series about parallel worlds: worlds that can change depending on even the slightest decisions that you can make different. Even in the current world, there were aspects that returned in other worlds, like the Castella. Oh, and the cockroach trick “backfired” with some hilarious result. What’s also interesting is that Watashi usually hardly ever was at home. In all of the rooms that the Watashi of this episode crossed, he only came across himself once (also explaining why that weird man with a beard appeared: it wasn’t exactly an older version, just a version of Watashi who refused to shave).

It’s also interesting how Oz doesn’t seem to be the main bad guy of this series after all. This also could be expected after the previous episode, but it seems that Oz is just another characters in all of the universes that Watashi takes place in. This anime really is a journey of self-discovery for Watashi. The main concept wouldn’t be that different if Oz weren’t there, and the biggest difference is that Watashi didn’t have someone to put him down to earth by reminding him what an idiot he is.

Now, this really is a series that’s perfect for the short airtime of 11 episodes: it’s short but focused, and knows what it’s building up to. Those are often the most successful short series, compared to the ones that either just cut off, or try to do just too much in too little time. That will make for enjoyable series, but not the masterpieces like Yojou-han and Kaiba because it can never get really in-depth about its characters.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

8 Responses

  1. Perrin4869 says:

    I felt exactly the same about this episode. If you had asked me a month ago which series I was expecting for the finale the most, it would have been Sarai-Ya Goyou, but after the last few episodes, Yojou-Han has really become something else! I got the novel, waiting for me to become fluent enough in Japanese to be able to read it.

  2. thomas says:

    Yuasa for President. Of the world.

  3. Michael says:

    The Tatami Galaxy is one episode away from being my best show in the past three years.

  4. Bruce says:

    Ozu isn’t the bad guy at all. He is very quirky and mischievous, but I doubt he is as sadistic as he seems. Ozu tries to help Watashi the most in the first episode, by getting Higuchi to pretend to be a god of matchmaking and by using Watashi’s own hatred towards him to make Watashi chase after Akashi. The Pen-Pal situation as well may not have been as much of a mindless prank as Watashi perceived it to be. Perhaps the only reason Watashi ever met Akashi was because of Ozu.

  5. Bruce says:

    Ozu isn’t the bad guy at all. He is very quirky and mischievous, but I doubt he is as sadistic as he seems. Ozu tries to help Watashi the most in the first episode, by getting Higuchi to pretend to be a god of matchmaking and by using Watashi’s own hatred towards him to make Watashi chase after Akashi. The Pen-Pal situation as well may not have been as much of a mindless prank as Watashi perceived it to be. Perhaps the only reason Watashi ever met Akashi was because of Ozu.

  6. Johnson says:

    Yeah. Watashi always makes Ozu out to be this devil guy, and since he’s the narrator the watcher is sort of swayed by narrator’s bias. But other characters have said positive things about Ozu (like Hanuki said he had pure motives, and Higuchi said he’s always watching out for Watashi).

    I think this is one of the strengths of this series. The characters are very multidimensional. There aren’t any good guys or bad guys (except maybe Aijima? Who cares about him though). Even Jougasaki, douchebag as he is, has redeeming qualities and is on friendly terms with Hanuki and others. That’s what people are like in real life.

  7. Michael says:

    Ozu is just Watashi’s excuse as to why he could not face his fears. This episode was a catharsis of sorts because of that, because whether Ozu was around to pester him or not, his failures and faults and foibles were still primarily stemming from him. He even desired a devilish companion to hold him back and remind him of his mistakes, a far cry from his blame game he played on Ozu during the early part of the series.

    It is with this episode that he faced both reality and the truth that most of his faults were solely because of him. Now knowing that, he can act accordingly and proceed towards living a realistic life, but still dreaming in the process.

  8. Machi says:

    Well this episode was quite a visualization of our own realizations that have been building up from the previous episodes. Only difference is that this time Watashi realizes it as well (so I don’t think I need to chime in on this considering how much I’ve commented on it before XD).

    What impressed me was how seeing the references to each episode play out in this single one. This episode felt richer, benefiting from the context one knows. You do get the feeling of such an expansive universe in the 4.5 tatami rooms but also how enclosed or claustrophobic it really is. I have to say this was a great job!

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  • Bam
    (Wednesday, Oct 22. 2014 01:13 AM)
    @Ninja: yeah spending a week at Black Rock City with 100k people with all the madness that transpires is pretty exhausting. The thing about Burning Man is that given the open atmosphere of acceptance makes it much easier to socialoze since you can keep the ego bullshit to a minimal.
  • ninjarealist
    (Wednesday, Oct 22. 2014 12:58 AM)
    @Bam I just mean I don’t have the energy for that type of event any more. It just wears me out. That amount of constant socialization.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 09:15 PM)
    @Ninja: yeah pyro contraptions are a big hit there, but that’s a lofty project indeed.
    And I’m pretty sure you’re not that old, there’s a lot of 50-60 year olds there and they’re having a good time. If you’re not a camping person then yeah … it’s not gonna be easy for you, but given the atmosphere, the music, and the art I firmly believe it’s worth checking out at least once.
  • ninjarealist
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 06:18 PM)
    @Bam Ahhhh Burning Man. I had some friends from Indiana who were trying to get me to help them build an organ that shoots fire with each key-press for Burning Man. It sounded fun but I already feel too old for something like Burning Man.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 08:32 AM)
    @Ninja: no I met most of them at Burning Man.
  • ninjarealist
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 08:23 AM)
    @Bam I see I just figured that if you had a lot of friends in KY you must have lived in the region.
    @Friend Yeah or involved desserts like Palmiers or Croissants. I actually am pretty decent at making croissants from scratch but it’s a pain in the ass.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 08:21 AM)
    And that’s … The More You Know ;)
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 08:19 AM)
    “Iran” originally means “the land of the Aryans”. The European settlers of Aryan decent are correctly labeled Indo-European as they traveled from north of India across Iran and the Caucasus mountain range (hence the term Caucasian) and settled in pastural lands in Europe. Hence we are the original white people. Go figure.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 08:14 AM)
    @K-off: some good-looking corn there m8.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 21. 2014 08:13 AM)
    @Ninja: No I’m Persian since I was originally born and raised in Tehran/Iran. I am mostly of Parthian decent with a quarter of Kurd in me. I have moved around the globe since I was 16 and now live in Sacramento California.

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