Posted on 23 December 2011 with categories: Mawaru Penguin Drum

The point where I realized what the Penguin Drum was came at the beginning of this episode, in which we saw the caged Shouma and Kanba, and Kanba found the apple in his cage. There, it all made sense: Kanba would share the apple, and they both probably would have died if that apple wasn’t there, making their lives even more fragile than Himari’s. At first I thought that those apples were a symbol for Ringo, but the way it kept being used in the second half just didn’t add up to that. It still remains interesting that at the beginning of the show, the penguin hat sent the brothers to Ringo of all people. But in any case, it remains very cruel what this implies: in order to save Himari, the lives of Shouma and Kanba were needed.

And it is as I hoped: this ending really is amazing. The story came together wonderfully. The characters reached their catharsis. It all fitted really well. It’s not like all questions were answered, but in this case I believe that this doesn’t matter much. This show answered enough things and the rest is just up to our imagination. There is more than enough room to fill in the blanks. This series relies really heavily on symbolism and the surreal to paint its story anyway. What this show is in essence is a character study. And on that, it really delivered.

Overall, this show just completely dominated as my favorite series for the past half year. It was one heck of a step above all other shows that aired. Now that it’s finished, can I say that I like it better than Utena? To that, I unfortunately have to say no: this series is amazing, but I still like Utena better. It just as more fresh, it had better character development, it could take more time to show off its cast. And even then, Penguin Drum still remains as one of the best two shows of the year. I’m not yet sure which one is the best, but I’ll get to that in my 2011 summary.
Rating: *** (Awesome)

75 Responses

  1. Perrin4869 says:

    Complete mindfuck indeed

  2. Rah says:

    I liked! *o*

  3. djrunn3r says:

    Quite incredible.

  4. hikari says:

    OMG….the ending make me tearful…damn Ikuhara!! But, still a beautiful ending. I loved it^_^ This has been such a ride, just wonderful!!>_<

  5. soppixo says:

    On one hand there is this part of me going “YOU HAVEN’T ANSWERED ANYTHING DAMNIT IKUHARA” on the other hand this ep is pretty much Ikuhara telling me that questions are meaningless in the face of the message he wants to send. Beautiful ending but COME ON!!! This is just so excruciating!!!

    • Pafiume says:

      AH-GREED. Agreed. So many answers that’ll never be gotten.

      I’ve enjoyed the series well enough to this episode, and I did enjoy the end of the episode, the epilogue (up until the walking into the stars). But before that it was a lot of me going “what the fuck is this” and laughing. Super overdramatic. Not necessarily bad. But. I’m not super happy with it. But it’s not my story. I’ll just have to move on because I know I’m not going to watch it again to try and figure shit out and make up what I don’t understand or isn’t answered. The lack of time spent on shit makes me angry though. I mean what was up with Mario? Maybe I will go watch Masako’s episode again. Or read someone explaining it.

  6. Scorcher says:

    Seriously WTF ending…
    Will have to watch at least 3 more times…

  7. rufe says:

    Wait….What? It was a pretty cute ending, but I’m confused as hell.

  8. Stuff says:

    One of the best shows ive seen in a while.

    The ending is truly bittersweet. All the sibling wanted was to stay together, but I guess fate wont allow them to :/. At least everybody is happy and alive.

    This show deserves a better score than anohana, just saying ;)

  9. Stuff says:

    well, I guess shouma and kanba arent quite alive?… but whatever.

    Also, I didnt cry throughout the episode, but when himari found that note, damn, that got to me.

  10. kurini says:

    I don’t want an ending like this! Shouma and Kanba are now like separated from everyone. I wanted to see Ringo and Shouma marrying, having kids etc… I still don’t get many things, I don’t get what was metaphorized and what actuallt what happened… But this episode was beautiful! Still..ugh.

  11. rufe says:

    So…where did Shouma get the fruit that he gave to Himari? Is that the half of his penguindrum that vaporized?

    Also, the person of destiny thing…does that get canceled out when they change destiny trains, or is it that Kanba and Shouma just ended up together? What about the Ringo and Himari aspect…

    I didn’t realize it was allowed to transfer the payment for Momoka’s diary.

    Is Momoka=Mario?

    What happened to Himari and HHH’s history?

    So…many…questions

  12. kevin says:

    What utter crap. Love you are all like “Not everything needs to be answered HUR HUR!!!”

    Are you dumbasses? The entire series led to fucking nothing. What a pathetic pathetic man Ikuhara is.

    • Keira says:

      Dear Kevin, I wish to remain silent but your attitude pasts the level of irritating and becomes disgusting itself. The pathetic man is not Ikuhara. The pathetic man is you, mister, who acts like an atention whore and insults everyone that have a different opinion than you.

      • Anon says:

        I’m not saying that I agree with either of you (because I literally sit in the middle here – Penguindrum was good, but not as good as what people are saying), but the last statement in your post also applies to yourself. You are insulting someone who has a different opinion than you. Just thought I’d throw that out there.

        • Renn says:

          I’d agree, but Kevin did call half this board a bunch of dumbasses. Plus, he has a history on this site of ripping on PD fans. Personally think he’s a closet fan. :P

          On topic, I liked (didn’t love) the finale. Wish it hadn’t been an Utena redux, but there was emotional closure.

        • Keira says:

          Well, I’m sorry for being impolite, but after all the trollish thing he’s done, I think he’s kinda deserve it.

          • wendeego says:

            Hey did anybody notice that in on a previous post, an Anon responded directly to somebody who dissed kevin by turning it directly back on that person?

            i.e. post on episode 22, by Anon: “Kevin may have written the show off without as much as whiff of intellectual justification, but he was not the first one to throw around ad hominem in this thread. That distinction goes to you.”

            The last thing I want to do is label a living, breathing human being a sock puppet, because that would be unconscionable. But I do think it’s a little suspicious that history is repeating itself here, unless a man/woman named Anon lurks around this blog and occasionally defends kevin from ad hominem attacks.

            Anyway an enormous apology to Anon if I’m in the wrong, but in any case, kevin’s still doing a pretty good job here in trolling everybody. He’s still got it! So that’s nice.

    • Alec says:

      So Kevin…What brings you here?

    • Machi says:

      I love how you insult peoples intellect for liking this show without actually trying to piece together what the show had already resolved prior to this episode that DOES answer relevant questions.

      Ringo: Lets face it for most part after Shouma saves her and Yuri points out her feelings for him her story has been pretty much resolved and has been relegated to simple emotional support to Himari as well as being a love interest to Shouma. This is especially obvious with her lack of screen time once she loses the diary.

      Yuri & Tabuki: Pretty much resolved when Tabuki found the dead body of the parents and Yuri came looking for him. Its clear both no longer had any intentions to pursue what they initially schemed and would clearly start a real family.

      Natsume: Well I don’t think I even need to explain that she’s had her resolution, as well as an apt background like all the other characters. So all plot points related to her are pretty much resolved.

      Sanetoshi & Momoka: We figured they were both pulling the strings it was only a matter of how they were doing it, and we’ve had the previous episode as well as this one answer it. They’re not as important as the previous characters mentioned and they are supposed to be an enigma, clearly neither are human at this point. However, what I would like to add at least is that its clear now why Momoka & Sanetoshi approached the siblings, both using Himari as the prize so to speak, given that its only the siblings who could resume what the parents in the past had done since Momoka was only able to halt it to an extent. It’s clear that by this episode both sides had done their best to try and convince/manipulate the siblings to following their cause – either side would still have offered Himari a second chance but between the costs of many lives or just the two of them.

      Finally, I would say that this episode resolves the whole Takakura siblings as a whole. They were definitely used by both sides but in the end they made their choice despite how sad it is. I don’t really see any non-relevant questions unanswered just secondary/minor ones like ‘What was Mario’s side like?’ or ‘What about Himari and the Double H?’ which I don’t think is really THAT necessary to answer since its more of a bonus more than anything.

    • zo says:

      I bet you’re one of those guys who watches dumb moe shows, stupid shows like Naruto and pseudo-philosophical shows that think they are extremely profound but in reality are just pretentious because they make you feel smarter.

  13. Kim says:

    The series wasn’t perfect but most of the important things were explained. It all comes back to Night on the Galactic Railroad. This was definitely the best ending of the year. I am definitely more than satisfied.

    • manlyflower says:

      Yeah I can’t believe I didnt notice it sooner, but when I saw the destination change to the scorpion’s fire, I was like, oh my god. And referencing Kenji at the end too.

      • Puran says:

        Can you explain what the scorpion’s fire symbolizes for those who haven’t read/watched Night on Galactic Railroad?

        • akitoyo says:

          Scorpion’s fire, from what I remember, is a little inserted story in Night on Galactic Railroad. It went something like this.

          There was a scorpion that lived in a field. It ate many creatures in order to live, but when a ferret (i think it was a ferret…weasel? fox?) tries to eat it, the scorpion runs away in desperation and falls into a well. Inside the well, while he is drowning, the scorpion realizes that his life is going to end easily, and most importantly, meaninglessly. If he just had been eaten by the ferret, like how those creatures were eaten by scorpion, the ferret would live longer and his life would be part of the circle of life mean something. He then prays to god and asks god to use his body for the good others. The scorpion then realizes that his body begins to burn, and that fire is still burning in the skies to this day, lighting up the dark for others.

          It went something like that. It’s a story about self sacrifice from what I can tell.

          • manlyflower says:

            Yeah, it’s kinda a story based on astronomical bodies, cause Kenji loved space, which also explains all of the pictures of space. His work provides a lot of symbolism not only for this work but a lot of other Japanese pieces of fiction. An interesting quote I found…

            “Apples were a favorite food of author Miyazawa Kenji, and they appear in many of his works… To Kenji, apples were connected to his image of the universe. This was because the universe that includes our galaxy is also round like an apple. So when you hold an apple in your hand, you’re holding the entire universe in the palm of your hand.

            “According to the author, the seeds of an apple were comparable to the worlds we live in from day to day. The fruit of the apple reflects the hugeness of the universe outside ourselves. Just like there’s a world outside the apple’s skin, the universe doesn’t end at its own edge either. Outside of our own universe, there’s something even bigger surrounding it. No doubt, there’s another dimension of a higher order expanding outside our universe, that can’t be contained by our three-dimensional rules.”

            You guys should read his work, there is always symbolism to be found ;D

  14. PL says:

    Ugh, what the hell?
    What message?
    All I saw was a Downer ending.
    Are the siblings actually alive? could just be spirits for all i know.
    The ending would be a lot better if they answered more questions.
    It’s all so vague.
    So, so vague.
    Granted, the ending somewhat fits, but it feels incomplete.
    *sigh*
    Confusing from ep.5…

  15. Engix says:

    Really good episode in my opinion, but i feel like something about the ending was missing. I know that this is not your generic anime but i was really hoping for a happy ending.

    It got to me when I learned that Natsume,Himari, and Ringo all forgot about Kanba and Shoma.
    Truthfully this episode let me mad,sad, and satisfed somehow satisfied.

    Though it wasnt episode the series had, or ending any series has had, I still found this episode to be good like I said

  16. Addictd says:

    This episode…disappointing. No answers, and we’re never gonna get em.

  17. Synkronized says:

    To me the big issue in the series was how children get abandoned, looks at what happens to them, the consequences of their fate on others and finally what it takes to change “fate”.

    Fate – The train metaphors show how people tend to be stuck on a specific path in life. And it actually takes a jarring event to shift them on a different track; a new path in life. The use of burning and apples represents the sacrifice often needed to jar someone out of the direction, the fate, they were headed.

    As an adopted child I can relate to the notion of sacrifice expressed through Momoka the most, and others like Shouma. That most of the core cast needed to be saved at one point. That in order to actually be saved, people from the outside have to make a sacrifice. Not spontaneous combustion which could be an allusion to a financial or some other sacrifice. Like my parents who never had a biological child of their own and had to pay a lot of money to get me here. If they didn’t save me I would’ve been sent to the Child Grinder, which from my perspective just represents all the awful things that happens to societies abandoned children.

    The characters in the story represent a shit tons of different sorts of kids abandoned by society.

    Ringo – The child of an over worked single mother and a “franchise” father. While the dad technically never abandoned her, the new woman and child he was with alludes to how many dad’s will abandon one family that “doesn’t work out” and start an entirely new one, leaving the mother and child to suffer.

    Yuri – Represents a victim of child abuse.

    Teacher guy w/e his name is – Represents a kid who failed to live up to his parent’s lofty standards.

    Shouma – His parent’s abandoned him for the sake of some ideal.

    Himari – A straight up unwanted and abandoned child.

    Kanba represented the resentment of doing anything to protect those close to him at whatever the cost to those on the outside. He also symbollized the resentment and bitterness that led to the insider vs outsider, us vs them, mentality through what happened to him and his family.

    The terrorist allusions represent how people disgusted with this world often lash out at innocents because the perpetrators are much harder to single out and punish. The pink haired dude represents this as a curse or whatever. That nebulous anger and rage that has no outlet and eventually causes only more grief in the end.

    Finally Ringo and Himari represent the woman, girl, female issue. That in this world, girls often get it the worst, since most people are more tolerable of keeping male children. The fact that Ringo and Himari were the ones that survived, strikes at this issue.

    ** I can’t believe I wrote this the day I finished my finals. I must have had a mental breakdown along the way haha.

    • lialiakicks says:

      Awesome observations! I really enjoyed reading your post. :)

    • ZJ says:

      Yeah I agree. What an amazing post!! I’m going to save this somewhere to refer to when I try and explain the purpose of this show to my friend. Wow

      The ending def. left alot of unanswered questions, especially the whole Shoma meeting Kanba in a caged box. What parts of this episode (and show at large) were symbolism and what parts actually happened, now that’s something I’d like to know. LOL

      But all in all dear God did I LOVE penguindrum to pieces. It just captivated me from that first episode and I’m happy to say that this is my absolute favorite non-shounen show ever. (As far as shounen go that award would have to go to One Piece followed by Fullmetal Alchemist).

      A big thanks to the creators of Penguindrum! I sleep happy tonight =D

      • larkspur says:

        I think that Shoma and Kanba meeting in their boxes symbolized what happened between them when the Tatakuras first took Kanba in.

        Shoma was trapped in a box. He was being raised in a cult, and if he were left alone there, he would have become brainwashed and dead inside. But then Kanba arrived. He too was stuck in the cult. The boys could have suffered alone, but instead they decided to truly accept one another as brothers, and share fates.

        Since Shoma’s fate was always to be tied to the crimes of the Takakuras, that became Kanba’s fate as well, and he was sucked into the organization. But that wasn’t a sad thing! He was always fated to die. Because of everything that happened, he at least has his brother with him in the afterlife.

        Since Kanba’s fate was to sacrifice himself for the one he loved, that became Shoma’s fate as well, and he ended up dying for Ringo. But that wasn’t a sad thing! Better to burn for love than to freeze in a cage.

  18. chocobunny says:

    Oh god. I have to say I was satisfied yet dissatisfied with the ending at the same time. It really broke my heart when I realized no one remembered Kanba and Shoma.

  19. Scruffy says:

    O god .. that was so beautiful and painful at the same time. I figured that 2 of the 4 siblings were going to ‘dissapear’ (I thought that there was going to be some form of merger) but that ending, with the way Shouma told Ringo that he loved her was heart wrenching. The worst thing is that she won’t even remember him, at least not clearly.

    It does seem that Yuri and Tabuki remember the fate change so at least they have not been completely forgotten.

  20. wendeego says:

    The ending of this show was pretty much the ending that I didn’t want, the ending that I did want and the ending I didn’t even know I wanted, all at once.

    I think I’m going to need a couple more days to parse that. Wow.

  21. Snowolf says:

    It was definitely a confusing ending- I need to go back and properly look at everything (I do in aspect, agree with thoughts here) but god, that was fucking devastating (emotionally). I won’t lie; it was definitely rushed, but considering that this show was much more thematically based than plot based, I don’t really have that many problems. Overall, I have to argue that MPD was perhaps the best show to come out this year despite this confusing ending and some little sloppy mistakes here and there; it’s been a wonderful ride, and I’m sorely going to miss waking up to a Penguindrum thursday. :(

  22. Puran says:

    So, umm, I have one theory about the apple that appeared in Kanba’s box and I would like some feedback.

    Shoma didn’t have anyone who he cared for, so he chose Kanba. That’s why the apple appeared in Kanba’s box. Kanba afterwards returned half of the apple to Shoma. In short it was the moment they became friends.

  23. Green says:

    “Peripheral route to persuasion” used beautifully. Ending Engages in Emotional response > cognitive response. Attempting to divert audience attention away from questions the writer could not answer by the use of confusion (Emotionally). Well, it’s a common technique used by the media to mask their intent. Interesting piece of work though.

    • imredjimmy says:

      Wow, plenty of smart words there :D Never thought that maybe his first intention was to NOT answer our questions? Maybe you’re right and they went “shit, what do we do now :S”. I don’t need answers when the work is as beautiful ;)

    • Snowolf says:

      Hmm, I think he did answer the questions he posed in the beginning, but he answered them by saying that some answers…had no answers? Free interpretation is a given, of course, but I think Ikuhara meant to say above all was that family bonds- the price of living is to live for other people, and family represents that more than anything; not that true love is sacrifice, but to live in itself, that is the greatest punishment bestowed upon anyone, but living in meaning- living through other people, by sharing your suffering, your pain, your joy with one another- that’s the true price of living, but it’s the one price we all would never give up, because our constraints- the things that keep us in boxes, that sustain us and yet also hinder us from becoming gods, or ghosts, are the same imperfections that allow us to bond with one another. And in the end, Shouma and Kanba sacrificed themselves not out of “true” love, but out of happiness, in finding, sharing, and relishing their bonds with one another. That is the Penguindrum; the bonds shared by the trio, the punishment suffered by them, and the price they paid to make each other happy. THIS SOUNDS SO INCOHERENT I AM SORRY. But I do agree with you to an extent; some questions are left unanswered for the sake of stimulating those ideas and questions in the audiences’ minds, masked with a very poignant and emotional story.

  24. imredjimmy says:

    I loved loved LOVED the ending! I wasn’t really expecting things to be revealed much so that part didn’t really bother me. It sure was bittersweet but I was sure that Shouma and Kanba would dissapear or die for Himari simply because the opening song was called “Boys come back to me”. The episode was beautiful and the animation perfect. I like when Himari “shatters fate” by stepping on the glass. And the music…..the music!!!! My favourite series of the year (not of all time) without a doubt! I feel like it’s the kind of series the more you re-watch, the more you discover new things. I hope psgels will enjoy it as much as I did.

  25. Alec says:

    I loved and hated the ending at the same time. I kinda get the symbolism or the deep things that happened in the episode. But what I do not understand is WHY!.

    Why did the characters do that? Why couldn’t they come up with a better solution? Why did they creators go for this ending? Why do I feel trolled bt this ending.

    “WHY” is the biggest word

    It’s just hard to put into words what I felt when watching that ending

  26. Alec says:

    still its a good ending.

    Just like what the creator did to Utena’s ending (Epic/Best ending. but kinda felt trollish) He did it to MPD

  27. c160 says:

    Even though pretty much nothing was out right explained, I think I can understand it. And like what every one else is saying, it was definitely emotionally devastating T_T

  28. Zetatrain says:

    Ok lets see here. Half of me feels satisfied but the half feels like I just got trolled. I was expecting many things to be left unexplained and I am still in the process of trying to make sense of some of the stuff that was explained.

  29. reverse says:

    just a bit simple ending in my book, bad guy perish/sustain and they live happy ever after, oh and sou and kan disappearance just to spice thing up. overall it pretty solid ending didn’t manage to annoy me one bit

  30. CJay says:

    I feel like I am one of the few people who liked this better than Utena. Utena for sure had better developed characters but the characters I feel were used better in MPD. I guess it might be a personal thing more but I thought that the themes were far more powerful in this show. And the Nanami episodes werent that amazing where as the comedy in this show was constant and always hilarious with the penguin antics.

    Id have to say that the more realistic setting in MPD also got my attention better and specifically made the surreal parts stand out more. Where as Utena’s really specific setting which was already rather surreal setting didn’t create the same contrast that I loved so much in MPD.

  31. gandalf8 says:

    I think I may be in the minority here, but I simply cannot seem to understand very well much of the story and symbolism in this series. Heck, I’m still scratching my head at most of the story elements in Revolutionary Girl Utena, Ikuhara’s previous series. Yet, you seem to have no problems with that seeing as you consistently rate each episode as excellent with a run of awesome episodes towards this finale. Therefore, I would like to make a request of you. I know these days you seem to be getting busier with real life Psgels, so I totally understand if you cannot fulfill it. So, my request is – could you make a synopsis that covers the major events in the series from the first episode up until this finale? And also include a separate column if possible to explaining the major symbolism in the series, like the apple for instance?

  32. akitoyo says:

    To me, Penguingdrum is a story about love. Plain and simple.

    I think that the penguindrum/apple = love. That’s it. Giving the apple to someone/saying “let’s eat the fruit of destiny together” = “i love you”.

    Tabuki says that every child just needs someone to say “I love you” to him/her, because this allows them to live on and find happiness in the cruel world.

    - Kanba was chosen by the parents, which is why he got the apple in the box, but he shares that with Shouma, which is why they’re both alive as “brothers”
    - Shouma says “let’s eat the fruit of destiny together” to Himari in the child broiler, so Himari is brought back and is part of a family and finds happiness
    - Momoka says “let’s eat the fruit of destiny together” to Yuri and Tabuki (not directly, but in order to save them from their respective shitty worlds) and the two come together to find happiness in the end
    - More obvious, but Shouma saying “I love you” to Ringo and burning (taking the punishment for reviving Himari) in her stead, and Ringo finding happiness with Himari in another world.

    etc. etc.

    I guess what Ikuhara is trying to say is, it’s a shitty world out there, but as long as there’s love between people, they can still find happiness (albeit many shapes and forms). Simple as that.

    “mawaru” = going round and round, Penguindrum = love. This is beautifully depicted in the siblings. Each sibling had shitty pasts, with shitty parents. But they loved each other (Again, with the apples 1) Kanba –> Shouma, 2) Shouma –> Himari, 3) Himari –> Kanba. WALLAH! A CIRCLE!) and could find happiness.

    On a side note, I read something that I found interesting somewhere.
    There are three siblings but only 2 apples, which is why Himari had to die. Destiny couldn’t allow all three to live, because there wasn’t enough love for all of them. That’s why in the end, with Shouma and Kanba sharing the apple and reviving Himari, Himari was alive in full form, but Kanba and Shouma were kids (half of what they were).
    I’m not exactly sure if that all adds up, but I thought it was interesting.

    • akitoyo says:

      OH, btw if you can’t tell, I LOVED THIS SERIES!

    • tmyk says:

      “I guess what Ikuhara is trying to say is, it’s a shitty world out there, but as long as there’s love between people, they can still find happiness (albeit many shapes and forms). Simple as that.”

      OK! I can deal with that. . .it also explains why I absolutely hated the series as well (aside from all the confusing symbolism)

      I just dont believe that the world is as shit as Ikuhara tells us it is, in fact I believe the complete opposite, that as well as the belief that you need someone to love you to get though, when I believe that you need to truly love yourself, instead of relying on someone else to shower their love on you (as no one person can shower there love on you 100% of the time forever) and the third thing, I believe that each individual decides their own fate.

      The fate part I understand why I rolled my eyes every 30 seconds (as they mentioned it that much) since that didnt gel with what I believe at all, the rest I just hated but didnt understand why, it wasnt because the series is inherintly bad, its actaulyl quite good at telling Ikuharas message, it sjust the message that I and probably a few others dont really think is accurate. Thats what I find the biggest flaw in overly symbolic shows like these that try to be “deep” and send a message, if people don’t agree with the message, it becomes too preachy top it off with the over the top symbolism then it morphs form preachy to pretentious. . .BUT at least I know what he was saying and why I don’t agree etc. . . thanks for that akitoyo

  33. PL says:

    Favorite line this ep(Subs):

    Sanetoshi: You’ve gotta be shittin me.
    Laughed for 2 mins.

  34. billish says:

    @gandalf: i’m sure someone will do it, considering how well-written this show is.
    I dunno, i figured about the symbolic penguindrum earlier in the series (though i did marathon this in a week or so).
    I really fuckin enjoyed this series, but i knew i would after maybe episode 10.
    I totally understand why this type of ending can be frustrating. I guess this type of highly literary / highly symbolic work is my cup of tea.
    Also, I REALLY appreciate some of the work that’s being done by some fans on this site’s comment section alone, as it just makes organizing thoughts much easier.
    Last, I feel that MPD blows Utena out of the water with its subject matter, but realistically I can’t compare the two because I haven’t / couldn’t finish Utena (matter of taste i’m sure)
    So, finally, what does this show mean to me? Well, it means I’m gonna give Utena another chance, thought I am pessimistic in the outcome lol

  35. kazid33 says:

    O wheel, the final here, uhmm to confusing for me, meaby is not the show for me but at least I agree that it was a good show, not a amazing but a good one. Really between this and Stein I really prefer Stein, but is actually about preferences. Is my personal opinion.

    And about the next season, I dont see anything interesting, its me?? or really the new shows are bad?.

  36. betawatcher says:

    @kazid33 NATSUME. NUFFSAID.

  37. nodbgp says:

    Wow, you know that wasn’t the final I wanted, I wanted an ending where the world ended and was born anew, because it’s as real as it can get. But seriously the final they gave is even more original and awesome, I mean there’s a lot of works out there that deal with sacrifice, but as long as I remember this is the first series that deals with real sacrifice. People are complaining about how the girls can’t remember the brothers, but would they be able to be happy remembering how the ones they loved died because of them? I don’t think so, the feeling of guilty would always be lingering somewhere. So that’s real sacrifice, giving everything without getting nothing back beyond the well being of the person you are giving.

    Also, thank you akitoyo for explaining the scorpion fire issue, I guess it’s time I read “Night on the Galactic Railroad”. Also thank again akitoyo for summing it up about the three siblings circle, in which Kanba gave Shouma’s life meaning, Shouma did the same for Himari and then Himari became Kanba’s light.

    For people complaining about answers not being given, just watch it again or read peoples posts or the better way, think harder, all that had to be answered was there and all that wasn’t answered, well, it didn’t have to be answered in first place. As for people complaining that it wasn’t a happy ending: A) Just pay attention to the last lines of dialogue between Kanba and Shouma when they pass in front of the house or B) go watch some happy go lucky series, there are a lot of those out there, and thats why they will be forgotten through the years, a thing which I’m sure will not happen with penguindrum.

    To finish this post, I wanna say I’m really happy I was only able to watch it exactly on my birthday, for it was a great ending fit for an great series. So thank you Penguindrum. :)

  38. kazid33 says:

    @betawatcher I will check that one. ? is the thirth season rigth?.

  39. Oersted says:

    I’m pretty sure Ikuhara would engage in a tremendous troll laughing if he saw some of these debates. I bet the guy put some images there without even thinking what they meant — and it’s not an offense. Mawaru Penguindrum is a story which anyone can intuitively understand, and it’s actually pretty simple, but our minds insist on extracting meanings and exploring dead ends. There is an undeniable artistic appeal and beauty to this unique storytelling, but we are too busy to appreciate it.

    We were expecting that the final episode would gather up all the stuff and conclude them… Well, sorry to disappoint you, but most of these stayed behind. Penguindrum is all about the trip, not the destination itself. For a complete analysis, it would be necessary to do it episode by episode, without bothering too much with the general scene (specially now that we know how it ends).

    • manlyflower says:

      I’ll be honest, that’s what I used to think as well with these kinds of works, and for some, that might be what actually happened. It might also be true for some of the “symbols” in this particular story, but these things that come up, sometime veeery esoteric things, represent the story in ways I couldn’t predict. There are somethings that are not intuitive at all, like some of the stories referenced, that deepen understanding about the values that the anime is expressing. And honestly, I don’t think there is a difference in heavy symbolic meaning and artistic storytelling. Just by examining the symbolism, we are basking in the beauty of the crafted story.

      You’re right, intuitively it IS easy to understand. Without understanding everything concretely, but that’s a different matter. But just how he fit the story perfectly and so masterfully into 24 episodes with little to no pointless excess, it would be almost insulting to say the scenes and settings he created were just flairs of ascetic inconsequence.

      I can understand where you come from, and I acknowledge there there are indeed artists of every nature that use symbolism that does not go anywhere just for the flair, but I honestly believe Ikuhara is not one of them. I have yet to find a piece of symbolism in MPD that does not accentuate or foreshadow the story and ideas in one way or another.

  40. kazid33 says:

    Then i thing is good to made four seasons¡¡

  41. Alec says:

    so Akio didn’t die/disappear… his plans just failed
    ans Sanetoshi didn’t die/disappear either… his plans just failed.

    Damn, I just love Ikuhara’s villains.

  42. Hogart says:

    I ended up liking this in different ways then I expected. I’m not one to enjoy doing all of the work myself, so as a narrative this failed me (or I failed it, if you prefer). But as a character study it actually ended up rather good, and redeemed itself in my eyes.

    I’m just not sure how it stands as it’s own story, because here the symbolism pretty much is the story. Since it relies so heavily on the shoulders it’s standing on, and those shoulders are always in-frame, it’s difficult to tell which I’m appreciating more. I can safely say that Penguindrum has made me appreciate those shoulders a bit more, at least.

    But yeah.. I can certainly understand why people who aren’t familiar with all the referenced material would see Penguindrum as too pretentious and dense to appreciate. I think it either got lucky (or was told with enough skill if you are forgiving) that it didn’t have to answer a lot of questions.. but that’s probably going to leave a lot of people in the lurch.

  43. evolstar says:

    For those wondering about the apple symbolism, I found this image to be helpful at explaining it: http://i.imgur.com/bYTw1.jpg

    • Machi says:

      I’d say that this is one thing that really should be left for viewers to ponder on themselves. The idea of it as a reference to Miyazawa Kenji looks to be a great start though to understanding it. But by and large it keeps changing meaning depending on the context it is used for in the episodes so yeah I don’t think this has a solid answer, nor necessarily requires one anyways.

  44. jzar says:

    On the fence a bit. I do feel like it the show did not tell the final story idea very well. I like the thinking parts very much but it went too far into unexplained. The true worlds answer our heart question.

    Without the basic truths……you don’t reach it. So for me this fell short. It missed telling or showing us the heart of the story. So it’s a missed but a great effort and still worth a look.

  45. Umi says:

    WELL finally…they were mean to sacrifice…..it is really sad…as I can get…..Momoka was saved by their sacrifice to…but …jeje well I will love that SHouma and Ringo live…and Kanba and himari died jajajaja..at least one of the couples died…but…well….guys sacrificed by their girls….the love they found through the story i guess…i like it…but yes..I expected more answers…symbolisim was nice…but….I love more resolutions jaja…and …well…that shouma live…he was a really nice guy…kanba….too..but…I really prefered Shouma..

  46. Dara says:

    I like the end but I think the end is missing something …
    Mawaru Penguin Drum was a brillant amazing sad crazy anime, but is the best of 2011…
    It’s really a anime to think about (This make us mad)
    I need more time to understand all…

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  • moshokosho
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 02:03 PM)
    still feeling bitter about captain earth, had been hoping for a Eureka 7, Bounen no Xamd style anime richly told
  • moshokosho
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 02:02 PM)
    mushishi and ping pong are the only ones worth watching this season unless you don’t have anything better to do
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 01:18 PM)
    And the angst. Oh god the angst.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 01:17 PM)
    That said, Mari needs a choke chain and the card game itself seems to have no real logic or strategy to it. For one bitch idols avatar ability is ridiculously overpowered. She can boost her avatar and yet destroy her opponents deck at the same time. There’s no real way to counter this. Basically despite this being about a card game we still have no idea how this game is actually played.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 01:12 PM)
    And Idol girl number 2 seems inexpressive and has a card persona which is overly exprssive.
    When you look at it these card persona are how these characters wish to be seen by other people. Intruging considering the main characters card is dumb and childish, suggesting that she a good bit smarter than she lets on.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 01:07 PM)
    Hmmm…Wicross does have something interesting going on with it’s avatar personalities.
    We have incest chick who is straightforward and not very smart with a card persona that is more like a wise older woman. Library girl who is shy and self deprecating has a card persona who is encouraging and friendly. Bitch idol is overly expressive and judges people poorly has a card persona who is inexpressive and can see peoples faults and weaknesses with pinpoint accuracy.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 08:53 AM)
    I’ve seen Robot artbooks in the bookstores all the time, but never bought one.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 08:51 AM)
    I think with robot I grabbed random chapters of it and did it that way as is the case with me and episodic stuff.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 08:48 AM)
    *here
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Apr 19. 2014 08:48 AM)
    @Bagel: Didn’t know anyone else on hear read robot. Been so very long since I did so…but I never read his bit…

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