Apologies for the lateness of this entry. I finally thought that that I’d have some time to catch up to everything this week, but then I caught a cold, so at the moment I’m not really 100%. I do want to respond to the surprising amount of comments who found it strange that I didn’t have this ranked as my top series for my August Summary. It’s pretty similar to Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica earlier this year: yes, this is undeniably awesome, and this episode was no exception. There just are series that I like better.
The reasons for that are always tricky, but I think that me having trouble to identify with Okabe’s angst has some part in it. There are a few things about this series that I just didn’t understand that have to do with that, and which have been bugging me for quire a while now. The first one I mentioned before: what about all of the time-lines that Okabe left behind, where Mayuri just dies. What happens to them? I find it a bit hard to believe that they just… disappear. The second thing I didn’t understand though: why is Mayuri fated to die? I mean, I can understand the first time she died: Moeka was ordered to do it, so she did it. Fits totally with her character. However, why does every single truck, train or vehicle hate Mayuri to the point where they just have to run her over? This series has this idea of “fate” that I just don’t understand, and for as far as I picked up, it just refuses to explain exactly why.
Still, the plot, and setting here still are top notch and amongst the best of the season. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for the characters: Hyouge Mono, Natsume Yuujinchou, Tiger & Bunny, Penguin Drum, and quite possibly even No.6 all have a characterization that I consider to be better and more interesting, varied and dynamic. Does that make the cast of Steins;Gate bad? Hell no, this episode was awesome and an excellent climax for the romance between Okabe and Kurisu.
I do guess that my expectations were a bit off about these past two episodes, but instead I got two very character focused episode. First one about Mayuri, then one about Kurisu, all about Okabe trying to decide to which time-line to go, all assuming that Kurisu’s death will be unavoidable like Mayuri’s. I admit that I did expect something more fast-paced.
The thing is though, that if if the plot wasn’t this good, I wouldn’t be able to have all these criticisms. The dialogue was wonderful and the conclusion of this past two episode arc, while I do feel that it was a bit dragged out, was excellent. I also really have to give props to the excellent use of the ED and that final climax afterwards.
Rating: *** (Awesome)