Phi Brain – 12

…and then Kaito took a massive bite out of his hair. It was, indeed, made of marshmallows.

While most series are hitting their end about now, Phi Brain is still going strong into it’s second half. In fact, everything I’m blogging is still going. Guilty Crown, Persona, Hunter x Hunter…So much for picking up new stuff to write about. It’s not like I could give up writing about Phi Brain though! I have way too much fun watching it and writing about it to stop, so I have no regrets. The derp shall continue to plague Metanorn until the very last episode! NONE OF YOU CAN STOP ME!!!!

Rook is going through his daily routine of organizing his folder of Kaito pictures, while his minions remark upon his profound improvement in solving puzzles. That’s when he announces the commencement of the next stage of his plan – something so shocking that they are worried for Kaito’s life. Back at Root Academy, Jikugawa hears of this plan from the Principal, and is considerably worried. Kaito may have been improving, as have the other Phi Brain kids, but they’ve still got a long way to go.

Yes, very good, now zoom in on the princess Kaito pics…

After a bit of an abrupt wake-up call, Kaito stumbles to class with Nonoha. There’s a mysterious puzzle on the whiteboard, which Kaito immediately solves. Upon solving it, Rook appears in the doorway and compliments him for solving a puzzle he once gave Kaito when they were little. Kaito rushes over to greet his friend, who he hasn’t seen in 9 years, with awe and amazement. The awe quickly turns into some sort of repressed sexual tension, and he tackles his buddy excitedly while babbling incessantly. During the happy reunion, Rook manages to explain that his health has improved and that he came all the way from the Crossfield Academy in England to see him.

HAHAHAHA…HAHAHA….HAAA….!!!! OH MANNNNN….Okay, but seriously, my hand is stuck…

In fact, he’s not just here to see Kaito, but he’s come to claim him as his bride. Kaito says “I do” despite all of his friends opposing the marriage, so he just elopes the next day. Cubic, who wishes he was the bride, places a tracking device on his bag in order to ruin the wedding at the last minute. Kaito suspects nothing. As soon as they arrive, Rook shows him around the Crossfield Academy where they both used to go before giving him a tour of the chapel they will get married in in a few days.

For convenience, let’s just put all of the godammed flashbacks in one place because they’re peppered all throughout the episode. The basic premise of Rook and Kaito’s friendship is that they used to play together during lunch. They were both losers with no friends, so they spent all their time solving puzzles (Kaito) or creating puzzles (Rook). The perfect uke-seme, receive-give relationship, right? Anyways, Rook only appeared at lunch because he had private tutor in a special building in order to reduce the strain on his weak body. He was yet another victim of “nondescript anime illness” that is so common these days.

The two of them also entered a maze in a church as kids, but they never could get to the end. One time, they even got lost. Thanks to GENTLEMAN X, they were able to get back out again and see the sunset. After that, he would give them puzzles and teach them the ways of puzzles. “See the puzzle. Smell the puzzle. Feel the puzzle. Become the puzzle!” he tells them, as this quote is definitely directly in the anime and not made up by Overcooled for a lame over-dramatization of the show. They take his advice, and grow closer to one another in the process. Their friendship is put on hiatus when Rook suddenly transfers out of the school for unexplained reasons.

But all that is done with now that Kaito finally has Rook back in his life! Nothing can go wrong now! Well, if you consider getting tricked into entering a tower that has a series of deadly, banned puzzles such as giant razor blades ‘nothing,’ that is. PSYCHE, WERE YOU FOOLED? I doubt it, considering how much Rook would stand behind Kaito and smirk maliciously all by himself. Puzzle time no hajimari da…

Bonus…I don’t even know anymore:

Hot damn, take a look at the headlights on that woman!

“You see, Kaito is like a kawaii inu and Rook is like a sugoi neko”

Puzzlephilia: being turned on by the thought of people solving puzzles. 

“What is…that thing in the sky? What is…I don’t even….WHAT IS A SUNSET?! I’M FREAKING OUT, MAN!”

Today’s awkward Kenja Puzzle: find Rook’s nipples.

End Thoughts: I really wish there was some live-watch group for this show, because throughout the whole episode I had no one else to fangirl with. Where there are two male characters being overly friendly, there is money to be had, so Sunrise decided to have Kaito and Rook all over each other the entire episode. My little fujoshi heart was ready to burst. Kaito is abnormally attached to Rook. It’s one thing to love your childhood friend, but it’s another thing to be so apathetic about every other person you meet. Nonoha pointed out that this was the first time she’s ever seen Kaito this happy, which I find a bit troubling. Is Kaito really so stuck-up and introverted that he never thought of Nonoha, Gammon, Cubic, Ana or Jikugawa as friends? They risk their lives alongside him, and he’s still “meh” over them but totally gaga over a kid he used to play with 9 years ago? Kaito really frustrates me sometimes…

The main purpose of having that contrast was most likely to show the extent of Kaito’s adoration for Rook, and they didn’t realize it made him look like a royal asshole in the process. Rook, sadly, was just acting for the most part in their friendship. As a kid, he genuinely saw Kaito as his savior. Now, this view has distorted considerably, and it probably has to do with his life over the 9 years they were apart. My guess? PUZZLE TRAUMA. When is it not puzzle trauma? When Rook’s just by himself, he never talks about the good old days with Kaito or fond memories…he just comments on Kaito’s puzzle-solving skills. I don’t think he sees Kaito as a person anymore, he’s just a tool for solving puzzles that he wants to push further and further because he knows Kaito is capable of doing so. So yes, he’s interested in Kaito and wants him to live, but he’s not hanging around him to have tea and biscuits together. Rook would probably murder all of his friends if it meant Kaito could become a smarter, faster, more creative puzzle solver. Welcome to Phi Brain, where puzzles are everything. It’s nice to see it take a bit of a dark twist. I can’t say I was laughing smugly when the razorblades came out – that was a genuinely tense moment in the show. I must say, I’m very impressed with this episode and where things are headed. It took a lot of dilly-dallying to get to this point – but Kaito finally has a frightening opponent. Rook knows him inside out, and he’s going to make Kaito taste despair once again.

Don’t get me wrong, Phi Brain didn’t suddenly pull a Madoka and become a “deconstruction of the puzzle game genre” (haha). It’s still the same, dumb Phi Brain where kids will bully you for solving puzzles too fast DESPITE BEING ENROLLED IN AN ELITE PUZZLE ACADEMY. You know you have it bad when nerds call you a nerd. Their past together was pretty normal and not very lulzy, although Gentlemen X’s (uhhh isn’t he just the Principal? Am I missing something?) speech is still there and still as ridiculous as ever. As soon as “puzzles” and “feelings” enter the same line of thought, things start to get weird. Rook was even able to use the same twisted logic to convince Kaito to solve the Banned Puzzle. Someone needs to tell Kaito that puzzles don’t actually have feelings and don’t actually have a desire to be saved. He’d avoid a lot of deadly puzzles if someone had just given him this pearl of wisdom. But no! That would ruin the logic of the Phi Brain universe! I’m half expecting puzzles to turn into dragons and start fighting at any point, wit the way this show seems to think they’re sentient beings. I guess you can’t have Phi Brain without some facepalming moments.



A neuroscience graduate, black belt, and all-around nerd. You'll either find me in my lab or curled up in my rilakkuma kigurumi watching anime.
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7 Responses to “Phi Brain – 12”

  1. TheVoid says:

    I don’t think Rook was suffering from any anime disease. I think he was part of a experiment done by some people in POG who are obsessed with the God Puzzle.

    Whatever horrible things they put him through after Kaito left could explain why he doesn’t even see Kaito as a person anymore.

    • Overcooled says:

      Ah, it would make sense if the POG were doing something sinister to him. Although, probably not TOO horrid based on the tone of this show. I still bet that it’s “puzzle trauma” and involves a tragic backstory…with puzzles. I wonder what they could have done to him to make him so hellbent on solving puzzles no matter the cost?

  2. Joojoobees says:

    Cubic is making a play for Yandere-Stalker of this show. Unfortunately for him, the competition is fierce, given that Rook has Kaito under surveillance and puts him life threatening situations just so he can prove his love (for puzzles).

    Speaking of Rook: that hair did not disappoint!

    Also, there was a lot of good BGM in this episode. It was dreamier than usual. I hope a soundtrack gets released.

    • Overcooled says:

      Cubic is the best stalker-friend. He’s not as bad as Yuno and Ringo, but he still goes above what a normal person would do to stick close to that “special someone.” Oh Cubic~

      I want the OST as well! Phi Brain actually has a good soundtrack!

      • Joojoobees says:

        He doesn’t just stalk Kaito. He gives Kaito electric shocks, knocks him unconscious and kidnaps him, and there was the time he strapped a device on him to stop his brain from functioning. And he does it all out of love.

  3. obladi05 says:

    You made me laugh so much with the wedding part! hahahah I agree with you: Rook showed up, told him he was being transferred, and Kaito just left without any thoughts on his friends who risked their lives just to solve puzzles with him. Anna was the only one to actually notice something was wrong in there (fortunately for Kaito). He doesn’t speak much but when he does, always makes a good point.

    I also thought Mr X was the Principal, but in that case Kaito would be really stupid for not recognizing him at school, I guess…

    The puzzle at the end was more about physical skills than intelligence, damn he had to run out for his life! Rook did what Helbert tried to achieve in the last episodes in many ridiculous and childish ways. He is even more obsessed with Kaito than anyone else, and that is kinda scary. This turned out into some harem where we still don’t know exactly whether the main character likes boys, girls or both (even though in this universe a puzzle gender could exist as well XD)

    • Overcooled says:

      It was so ridiculous, I had to poke fun at it. Cubic has a tracking device and Ana is suspicious, so I think they’ll come try and rescue him soon. Then Kaito will realize the ~magic of friendship~

      I was also under the impression that the tablet had some sort of map/puzzle to lead you to the right exit. Otherwise, the other passages would be dead ends. I’m not sure though, since Kaito never gave any of his reasoning, he just paused to look at the tablet while complaining about not having enough time to think.

      Haha maybe both? Kaito x Puzzle…best OTP.

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