Nisemonogatari 4, Ano Natsu de Matteru 3

I go off and relax for a few days, watch some shows WITHOUT writing about them (feels odd), and when Nisemonogatari 4 showed up I figured it was time to get back on this horse and polish off the Karen Bee story arc. Silly me. Plenty of of conversations to go before something happens.

Yes, Karen, it is. Whatever you're talking about.

Every interesting thing I can think of has happened off-camera. Kaiki cursing Tsuhiki, Senjougahara kidnapping Araragi … Everything we get to see are the conversations before and after the events. Bakemonogatari was mostly talk, too, but it lowered itself to show some events from time to time. Here, we start with Araragi talking with Hanekawa and his sisters about another event which at this point we didn’t only see but don’t know anything else about, either. And instead of talking about the event we get everyone telling Araragi not to get angry about the event we don’t know anything about. Though we get some clues. First, why is Hanekawa with them in the first place? Why isn’t Karen constantly doing handstands or some other acrobatic? And it wasn’t until I was looking through my screenshots before I realized she was sweating a little. One answered question sticks out: Where are Hanekawa’s glasses?

And we actually know what it is.

We move on to conversation #2: Araragi/Hanekawa. And we actually learn a few things interspaced with Hanegawa’s amusement at how Araragi treats his sisters (a reprise of the first converstion, actually), and the amusing point that she is sitting on Araragi’s bed (we see a VCR-style flashback to the Sengoku scene last week). I would say that this scene is therefore full of sexual tension for Araragi, but ALL the scenes in this show are like that. What Araragi is doing sitting on a crescent moon couch I don’t know. Anyway, there is talk about Hanekawa always finding out the truth of a matter and that being her curse, we learn that Karen was looking for the source of the curses plaguing her middle-school and got cursed by Kaiki (PLOT!), and that the odd conversation that concluded last week’s episode was Hanekawa threatening Senjougahara that she would make Araragi her boyfriend. I won’t begin to figure that out. Senjougahara would go on a killing spree, but in that talk she simply looked defeated.

Conversation #3, interrupted.

And we’re barely halfway home. Conversation #3 is a complete surprise. I frankly don’t know whether to be happy or not to discover that quiet, sullen Shinobou can actually talk up a storm. This talk is no different. We learn important facts, i.e., the nature of the curse afflicting Karen, who is actually feverish and in danger of losing her life. Shinobou removes Araragi’s handcuffs (so that WASN’T him last episode) and eats them, and I’m trying to take in the significance of that. But most of the talk is about them and each other. Their relationship is especially interesting as you can feel a closeness between them in spite of their talk about not forgiving each other and requests to be killed. They act like they’re former lovers. I suppose it helps that they’re both naked in the tub, and at one point Araragi is washing her hair. So, in the end, we’ve learned what afflicts Karen and who’s responsible, and we’ve had a lot of people talking around and through topics, as if to say it right out would destroy everything. Maybe it would.

At last.

Ano Natsu de Matteru 3 is as odd as the first two. Kaito, embarrassed about confessing (or being about to, but cut off) to Takatsuki, skips school, and all his friends decide it’s for different reasons, meaning we get a lot of trips to people’s imaginations. Episodes based on misunderstanding are usually annoying, but this one slides by because it was unclear to me why everyone was behaving like they were. Tetsuro, Mio and Remon stalk Kanna and Taiko while they go out, thinking it a date, which I didn’t realize until one of them spelled it out for me. There’s a very odd scene between Mio and Tetsuro about messing with people’s love lives; she’s so serious about it that it feels out of place. There’s actually two decent scenes, one where Taka and Kaito sit to talk it over, only to realize that they have no idea what the other person was thinking (I love it when anime characters talk intelligntly. It happens so rarely, if it’s not Nisemonogatari) and the other showing how Kaito had thought over his actions and his place with Taka, making Kanna VERY happy indeed. So again, it’s a cliché episode that finds moments to free itself. With this show I’m not sure if it’s by design or accident.

3 thoughts on “Nisemonogatari 4, Ano Natsu de Matteru 3

  1. >we see a VCR-style flashback to the Sengoku scene last week

    Actually, that’s a “flashback” to the beginning of Hanekawa and Araragi’s dialogue, just when she entered his bedroom.

  2. Quite right, that’s the beginning of the Hanekawa scene. I meant the “sit on the bed” reference being a reference to the Sengoku scene. “Flashback” was a poor word to use considering we’re looking at a VCR.

    Let’s see … the main dialogue is one narrative, the VCR conversation is a second, and maybe I would count Araragi’s interior monologue (in the VCR conversation) as a third. I had to watch that few seconds a couple times to figure out what was going on, but I’m used to that with this show.

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