Owarimonogatari – Episode 9

Monogatari returned to top-tier form this week, with an episode whose visual theatrics were somewhat reminiscent of Shinobu Time’s gorgeous full-episode tapestry. And in fact, the visual tricks here were even more diverse than that, with shots mirroring that tapestry sharing space with some cut-paper images, creepy black and white interpretive shots, and great visual compositions done in Monogatari’s house style. Plus this episode featured a mix of Araragi and Shinobu bantering and Gaen just totally dominating everybody, so the narrative end was solid too. We’re not really in anything approaching the emotional turmoil of Sodachi’s material, but this was a fantastic episode on the visual end, and that’s more than enough to satisfy me for now. It even ended with a genuinely thrilling cliffhanger, implying a number of eerie possibilities regarding the nature of Shinobu’s old friend. We’ll have to see where it goes from here.

You can check out my full review over at ANN, or my notes below!


The left half is a monkey, the right half is a crab

“It’s something bad in the state before it becomes an apparition”

“Without a sword, an armor-clad samurai feels incomplete” Is there something to this idea of feeling complete/incomplete?

And a snake rises out of it. All his past apparitions

And Araragi switches to Kanbaru’s shredded hoodie. So that explains the hoodie he was wearing when he ran into Hanekawa

“If you keep apologizing so many times like that, it makes me doubt if you really feel bad about all of it”

I suppose complete/incomplete also can apply to the disconnect between Araragi and Shinobu

Araragi tells the truth about the samurai

“That man died 400 years ago. I saw it clearly with my own eyes

Back to the shrine, and Gaen with her rainbow sky

Gaen introduces herself as Ozuki Oshino, Meme’s little sister

Randomly great animation for this Shinobu outburst

Shinobu refused to believe the samurai is her old minion. She says he should be dead

He was a vampire, so he’s revived very slowly from his death by burning

Gaen keeps referring to everyone with that classic “as expected.” Everyone fulfilling her expectations

Even now, he’s still recovering

“The fact that I know everything doesn’t mean everything will go my way” Gaen had planned to have Yotsugi deal with this

“This is the perfect chance for you to take responsibility for happenings you set up.” More of Araragi taking responsibility. Even if this isn’t chronologically coherent, it’s still following the same character journeys

Gaen implying there’s a reason all these apparitions have appeared around Araragi

“Your friend is nothing more than a sad girl who protects you, even if it’s unintentionally” (regarding Hanekawa)

Gaen says it’s his “modesty” that would make him deny his special nature

“In the end, keeping the promise is the shortest route to getting results.” All of her lines feel like mocking commentary, backhanded advice to children she couldn’t respect less

Some wonderful painted sketches for these flashbacks

Beautiful cut paper-esque art as well

Images of the samurai tossing himself into the sun

Tons of gorgeous evocations of his journey

And he was “born” fifteen years ago? Oh boy