We’ve got mysteries regarding Araragi, Shinobu, the tiger, and the old HQ, and it’s pretty likely most of them are the same one. Let’s get to it.
0:17 – Chapter FIFTY-TWO? Isin you beautiful bastard
3:09 – Casually diagnosing why she’d be turning back into Neko. I like it
4:10 – Holy shit it’s a parent. Also, pretty brutal dressing-down here
5:14 – “People can run away from things they don’t like. But if they just avert their eyes, they’re not running.” Interesting way of framing it
I guess she figures Hanekawa needs some tough love here – but what does this character actually know? Well, thisis Monogatari, every character will generally know everything they need to know about anyone else’s exact mental state for the current arc’s point to be made.
I also liked the shift from Hanekawa happily adopting the fake family role given to her by the sisters, and then her equally quick shift back to “I didn’t help Araragi. My situation isn’t a big deal” when the mother calls her on her pretending
6:10 – A new (old?) challenger approaches?
6:59 – We are getting so spoiled on visual design this season
7:32 – “I’m a half-vampire freelance vampire hunter, if the cash is good.” A half-vampire spirit detective who works only for personal gain and dresses in all white with blond hair. So he’s an intentionally blatant foil for Araragi?
10:02 – Goddamnit Isin. You lead an episode up to some kind of confrontation and resolution involving Neko, Shinobu, Araragi, and Kanbaru in the ruins of the old construction site, then skip like twenty chapters so Hanekawa can interrupt a meeting between a bunch of people we’ve never seen before. This is some high-quality trolling right here
10:52 – “There’s nothing I don’t know.” “She said it, so full of confidence.” Hanekawa’s getting run over this arc, jeez. Now they’re even belittling her catchphrase?
11:25 – Is it just me, or is this episode going insane with the head tilts?
It also seems like they really are gonna address some of Hanekawa’s fundamental issues. They’re finally demanding she deal with a problem herself, and not look away, pretend everything is normal, and let either Neko or Araragi fix everything
11:27 – “You don’t even know that you don’t know anything.” She’s doing that on purpose!
12:07 – Another beautiful one. I could make a damn gallery out of this, Uchouten Kazoku, and Gatchaman Crowds
14:40 – “Their names are the same. It’s a bit too clever to be a coincidence.” Oh Senjougahara, you and your lack of respect for the fourth wall
15:05 – “Trauma… oh, that sounds like a pun.” Jeez, I bet this scene was fun to translate
16:04 – “The places where you spent the night burned down.” Alright, that’s confirmed. …or at least it’s confirmed that Isin wants us to think that’s the link
18:08 – “I’d associate fire with a heart in love.” Hm. The self-deception stuff is already covered by Neko, and she already admits she’s in love with Araragi. Hm…
19:47 – The worst face. Goddamnit Fire Sisters…
Envy? Really that simple? Hm.
Well, this arc has definitely done good work in humanizing Hanekawa, though it feels like every single character becomes more like a human being when Araragi isn’t around (except for those damn Fire Sisters). And now she’s writing a letter to herself, which is a pretty cute way to make a connection – but she still hasn’t admitted that sheis Black Hanekawa, and that this “other side” of her isn’t an aberration, it’s just the other half (or possibly majority) of her emotions. She’s also taking a pretty half-assed approach to resolving her feelings for Araragi, at least so far – hopefully next episode will resolve this with a little more fireworks.