Confusion: Angel Beats 12, Daimaou 11

I don’t know what to make of Angel Beats 12. Let’s start with the parts that make sense.

Just about all the students not directly involved in the fighting move on, including Girls Dead Monster all at once. This raises the question: why is the SSS still there? What part of their existence remains unsatisfied? The show doesn’t give an answer, but I suspect it’s out of loyalty to Yurippe, the one person there who cannot accept what happened to her in her previous life, and who can blame her? But is she doomed to stay there? These are questions that come up later, when the show starts getting incomprehensible on us.

And there’s the fighting. The shadows are proliferating, and once again we see an NPC transform into one. The gang regroup, in one of those scenes where someone is about to be killed only to be saved by a newcomer, who tosses off a snappy line. It’s good enough, but we know not much will come of it until the source of the shadows is found and destroyed, and that brings us back to Yurippe, down in the guild’s lair, encountering monsters there, too. Here’s where it gets a little strange. A shadow takes her by surprise and she finds herself in a normal classroom. Asked to read a paragraph, she launches into a speech about her life, and how she has to accept it for what it is. Turns out she was nearly overwhelmed by the shadow, but Otonashi yanks her back. Apparently Kanade could sense her distress. Meanwhile, I shrug. Maybe it will make sense later.

Instead, when she finds the source of the shadows (and the reprogrammed Takamatsu) we get a lot of vagueness. Apparently the shadow program kicked in when love appeared in this world, and we can’t have that in the afterlife, can we? We also learn that Yurippe is the source, and that she could make this world a heaven on Earth. And that the programmer has turned himself into an NPC. After Yurippe destroys the computers and saves everyone, she considers herself a failure. I’m not sure why. Maybe because even if she protects everyone, they’ll move on and she’ll be alone. Maybe it’s because she still was unable to save her siblings in the real world. But then in an unexplained bit, the siblings appear and tell her she doesn’t have to fight any more. And finally she wakes up in the school infirmary with the remaining SSS people smiling at her. … It sort of makes sense, gobbledygook about the computer programs aside, and I wonder if now she’s found the peace she needs. I have a feeling next week is going to have a lot of tearful farewells.

Hoo-boy, and I thought Angel Beats didn’t make sense. Ichaban Ushiro no Daimaou 11 is so crazy and frantic that it makes last week’s episode look peaceful. And Akuto hardly appears at all.

Remember, he’s buried underneath the crashed airship. The rest of the characters frantically battle each other until he shows up again. Let’s see, we got Yamato trying to capture Keena, who is being protected by Fujiko. The two armies are after Akuto, I think. Meanwhile, the student council is going against Eiko, who has that puppet guy on her side.

Last minute rescue #468793 in this episode alone.

But it’s not that simple. Like the Angel Beats episode, this one is full of people saving the day at the last minute and uttering pithy lines. And they’re everywhere. One SC member saves Fujiko, then they come back and save the rest of the SC. Korone saves Eiko from Junko, who was saved earlier by Fujiko, I think. It’s all a blur. Oh, Keena undergoes a change of some sort, and Eiko’s father isn’t dead after all. I think he’s a cyborg now, or always was.

In all the craziness they do manage to do a couple things. First, Eiko is defeated. Junko’s house is sworn to Eiko, but she says fuck that and unleashes her magic sword, turning her back on the traditions that have carried her family yet has helped to perpetuate their share of wars. Instead she’ll fight for love. Rather like what Akuto intends to do with all this demon-lord-every-100-years nonsense. So that story part is done with for now. Keena goes off willingly with Yamato, but you know it’ll be more complicated than that. And Hiroshi/Braver is still around, reluctantly siding with Yamato for now, which sets the stage for next week’s finale. There’s no way it can top the fireworks in this episode, but that’s what I said after the LAST week’s.

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