My reaction exactly.
|I just want to make a public announcement: I hate school. Especially my organic chemistry lecture. It’s my third class of the day. That being said, I still appreciate my school and MY “class 3” a hell of a lot more than Kouichi’s. Talk about creepy… Let’s go back to episode 3, shall we? I’m sure you all want to revisit all these epically gory deaths just as much as I do… *shudders*|
Episode 3 starts off as Mei finally takes off her eye patch to reveal that she has a doll eye. It’s a little anticlimactic, but disconcerting nonetheless. She then tells Kouichi the story of class 3 and a student, also named Misaki, who died 26 years before. While at school, nobody tells Kouichi anything and his aunt, Reiko, won’t even tell him anything either. So he continues to be left out of the loop which is unfortunate for us, the viewers, as well. He also continues to spend time with Mei despite the cryptic warnings that his classmates give him. The episode culminates in the gruesome death of Sakuraki – after an exam, Kouichi steps outside to talk to Mei. A teacher runs up the hall to summon Sakuragi and, as she runs out, she spots Mei and, with horror, dashes away…only to trip down the stairs and impale her neck on her umbrella. Oh dear lord.
And this is why pointy umbrellas are outdated, guys…
It turns out that Sakuragi’s mom had also died that day in an accident, which puts a rather awful twist on things. After school a little while later, Kouichi runs into one of his classmates. As they talk, however, a massive sheet of glass almost falls on them, causing the girl to have a panic attack about not wanting to die. He meets with Mei again at the doll shop and, though she is extremely vague, she only emphasizes the fact that there is something extremely wrong with class 3. At school, Kouichi’s classmates discuss the recent events, considering implementing new “countermeasures.”
Mizuno, however, is helpful through all of this as she offers to investigate through her brother, who is also in class 3. Kouichi confronts his classmates about what’s going on and, during this, receives a frantic phone call from Mizuno. She had asked her brother about Misaki Mei and he told her that he knows of no such person. While on the phone, Mizuno steps into the elevator. The supporting cables snap and she ends up plummeting down to a terribly painful death.
…And this is why I take stairs. With no umbrella.
The next day in school, Kouichi tells Mei about Mizuno’s death as his classmates look on. In art class, Mochikuzi expresses concern over Mikami-sensei’s absence, especially considering the recent events. He doesn’t tell Kouichi much more than that, however, which prompts him to go to the library to investigate. He pulls out the photo album and looks at the class 3 picture from 26 years ago, the class that his mother was in. The librarian comes up and asks about Kouichi’s mom, who he knew in the past. He seems to know more than he’s letting on…
Akazawa interrupts and tells him that he was summoned to the faculty room. There he is interviewed by the police about Mizuno’s death. When he gets back to class, he finds all the students gone. After class he walks home with Mochikuzi and Takabayashi. They warn him that things are about to get rather bad for him and, right as Takabayashi attempts to explain, he dies of a heart attack. The next day in class, Kouichi finds that everybody is ignoring him. He finds the class roster in his desk from Mochikuzi, who also wrote a note asking him to ask Mei about it. He goes to the doll shop, which ends up being where Mei lives, and has her tell him about the story behind class 3.
It turns out that, when the class 3 of 26 years ago acted as though Misaki was actually alive, they invited the dead to the class. And an interesting phenomenon began to occur in the following years where, when the class size increased by one student, students and people related to them would start to die. Essentially, the “extra student” was actually one of the dead victims posing as a student in the class. As such, the students of the class started to form countermeasures against this phenomenon. The only thing that seemed to work was ignoring one of the students so that the number of students in the class would go back to the right number. And this is what was happening to Kouichi and Mei.
Wow. I definitely expected people to die in this show but not quite…so many. This is a crazy, gruesome and constant stream of death, which makes it quite clear that there is definitely, one hundred percent, something extremely wrong with class 3; though, we already knew that from the start. Either that, or the universe is pulling some crazy-as-hell coincidences and they’re not pretty. Though I find the deaths to be a little excessive at this frequency, they are rather effective plot devices in that they serve to emphasize the sense of urgency and dread that this “curse” is putting on the kids in the class. Though it may seem fairly antagonistic of the students to isolate one or two of their classmates in an attempt at self-preservation, I can’t blame them. I, myself, am a skeptic of all things superstitious, and yet, if I were in class 3 and witnessed all these deaths I would, quite frankly, flip my shit.
The ending revelation about the actual class “curse” came as a bit of a surprise to me. I thought it would be something along the lines of a ghost of Misaki out for revenge. So, in this sense, I’m pleased with what the phenomenon ended up being. Though I’m not typically one to prescribe to horror (and thus not familiar with the archetypes), I found it to be a very original twist on things. As to the dead in the class, the most obvious individual would be Kouichi himself. After all, the dead person has no memories of anything in the past and wouldn’t even be aware that they were dead. And wouldn’t it be perfectly convenient that the protagonist, the one we’ve been growing to trust and the individual, through whom we are experiencing this story, is in fact the villain of the entire affair? Furthermore, he’s definitely got a familial link to class 3 seeing as his mom was in the original class 3 and his aunt was also in it 15 years later. Also, isn’t it quite ironic that Reiko was in the class the same year that her sister, Kouichi’s mother, died? This theory would explain the sinister smile that he wore in the montage of images in the pilot episode as well as his apathetic response to recent string of deaths. It is this latter point that is especially concerning to me. If I were Kouichi, I would have been A LOT more concerned, bordering on hysteric, about the entire situation. The numbness in his response just doesn’t seem normal to me and I’m not willing to dismiss it as a coping mechanism.
Continuing on, Mei definitely had me fooled. Everything about her screamed that she was the ghost of the Misaki of 26 years past, from her doll eye, which is SO unsanitary, to her manner of speech, to her skin color. Let’s not forget the fact that the entire class didn’t acknowledge her existence, either. Though we supposedly understand the reasoning behind that last bit, the only reason I am inclined to believe that she exists is that Mochikuzi told Kouichi to ask her specifically about what was going on – which means that he knows she’s real. The past behavior of the other students, especially with Teshigawara telling Kouichi not to mess with things that don’t exist, also points to this conclusion. It still doesn’t explain why Sakuragi reacted with such horror at the sight of Mei before she got skewered by her umbrella, though. I’m definitely looking forward to the next episode to get some of my questions answered. …I wonder who’s next to die… T_T