The shadows start their dance
Instead of watching Madoka alone, on my couch and in the dark….I watched it in broad daylight with my grandma puttering about, cleaning stuff, and talking about girls getting raped on the news. Of course, no matter the circumstances, Madoka is so haunting and engaging that I could have a thousand MOANING LES-Q’S playing in the background and still be moved.
Sayaka gives Kyubei a piece of her mind as soon as she gets home, absolutely incensed that Kyubei never told her about the contract deals later. Kyubei says “Well, you never asked!”, proving that the devil is in the details. With the body and soul separated, Sayaka has a much higher threshold for pain, demonstrated when Kyubei touches her soul gem and presumably brings her soul and body a bit closer together again so she feels the aftermath of that battle with Kyoko.
Homura admits to Madoka that she knew this all along, but no one ever believed her when she told them. Once again, she insists that Madoka gives up on her teal-haired friend in the usual cold manner. Why so cold? Because she’s barely even human anymore.
Sayaka is skipping class to mope under the blankets. Her sulking would have continued if it weren’t for Kyoko calling her out to have a wee chat. She actually didn’t call her out to tease her into wanting a fight, but to just explain how she’s adapted to the new knowledge of her soul being ripped out. It’s a deal, fair and square, and she’s paying for what she bought. Sayaka doesn’t really seem to buy it, so Kyoko takes her to a church to reveal her entire backstory.
Will you take a bite from the fruit of knowledge, Eve?
This dilapidated building used to be Kyoko’s dad’s church – a place where a very kind man tried to teach a new religion to appeal to the new generation. Everyone wrote off his ramblings of that of a madmen from a cult, and left the church. Kyoko was poor, and hardly got anything to eat. Wanting to change this, she asked Kyubei to make everyone listen to her father’s sermons. It worked splendidly until her dad found out that he wasn’t interested, people were just being magically forced to listen to him. He called Kyoko, who was working hard to kill witches for the sake of others, a witch. He killed everyone in the family except for Kyoko and then committed suicide.
After laying her heart out on the floor to explain why Sayaka shouldn’t use magic for others, she stomps all over it. Sayaka refuses to stop trying to help others with her magic, and then walks off. Not before asking where Kyoko gets all her food (lulz, stolen?). So much for Madoka’s mom’s “make mistakes first so your friends will realize how stupid they are!” philosophy.
The next day, Sayaka returns to school. It’s awkward. Maximum awkward. Madoka and Hitomi give her weird looks and she has to avoid Kamijo (you’ll find out why later). The awkward levels rise exponentially when Hitomi has a private chat with Sayaka, confessing that she loves Kamijo. Sayaka is shocked, and is faced with either admitting her feelings or letting Hitomi have the man she loves.
The next time we see Sayaka, her strong front is completely shattered. She’s left sobbing in Madoka’s arms, disgusted at her inability to ever love Kamijo given her current body. She almost wishes she hadn’t saved Hitomi, which makes her feel like a jerk too. This time, Madoka is the strong one. She comforts Sayaka (doesn’t provide any advice though) and follows her on her next witch hunt.
Kyoko is still playing her “nice girl” card, and watches from afar as Sayaka fights a witch. This time, the witch realm is that of black silhouettes (like shadow puppets), showing everyone as dark figures. Sayaka is beaten up pretty badly, so Kyoko steps in and offers to kill it for her. Instead of accepting help, Sayaka thrusts herself into the open and mindlessly slashes the witch over and over. With those maniacal giggles, it’s quite clear she has fully separated her body and soul so that she can’t feel pain.
…Aw crap, a razorblade
Something tells me Sayaka is gonna want her money back after the puppet show
Madoka stalks because she cares
“$5 Sayaka dies.” “DEAL” (….The real reason Kyoko went in the save Sayaka.)
End Thoughts: Will Madoka Magica ever stop being awesome every single week? I hope it doesn’t. Thinking back on it, this episode is pretty much just people talking…But my God, I was hanging onto every word and lapping it up. The first hard-hitting speech was from Kyubei, who seems to just run on logic. I grant a wish, you kill witches for me. I give you powers, so you have to use this new body. It’s equivalent exchange, and the soul is just another piece of goods that can can be traded and bartered with, as if we were talking about Pokemon cards. Are you even conscious of your soul right now? No one even NOTICED their soul was stuck into a gem, so who cares, right? Looking at it from a pragmatic sense, as Kyubei does, it’s a good contract. Of course, humans LIKE their souls even if it’s intangible and impossible to be aware of, and losing your soul is…well…IT’S A BIG DEAL.
I figured Kyoko made a nice wish and had some sort of underlying reason for adopting her independent style. Her story really explained why she acts the way she does, from her constant eating to her method of coping with losing everything for one wish. I don’t think Kyoko’s coping method is really wrong…treating the contract as a business contract without an emotions attached is a good way to look at it while retaining your sanity. It means turning a blind eye towards the painful reality a bit, but it works for her. Sayaka method? Not so good. She still hasn’t found a way to deal with having her soul and body separated, to the point where she just separates them completely to blot out the pain. And to think she was supposed to be the strong one. You can only go so far penting up all your emotions inside. =/
Last week I asked you guys how you would deal with Kyoko in Sayaka’s shoes. My response? Let her use her dirty methods, but try to get closer to her and find out why…Then slowly try to convert her into spending less of her time letting witches kill people and more time actually saving people. If I don’t manage to worm my way into her heart successfully (I bet you I could) then I’ll just leave her the way she is and at least do MY part. That question kind of has no point now though, since Kyoko is all nice now. orz.