Phi Brain S2 – 21

The deathmatch shall not begin until Ana has hugged everyone at least once!

This week’s been very busy for me and next week will be even worse. But I will do anything for Phi Brain! I’d stick my hand in a blender and marinate it with salt and lemon (and maybe some mint for added flavour~) just for Phi Brain! This week’s episode is a bit on the more tame side compared to how unruly things tend to get, but that doesn’t mean I’ll stop playing the role of the overly-devoted fan any time soon.


Following Orders

This week’s episode is alternatively called “how Doubt and Mizerka freak out when they learn the truth.” I expected them to join Kaito’s side in this episode, so no surprises there. The interesting part was watching how they reacted to the news. Doubt is angry, but he doesn’t let it interfere with his sense of duty. He’s so caught up in obeying Klondike, that his loyalty has taken up an almost twisted level of fidelity. Mizerka is devastated that she isn’t a real Phi Brain child, as she puts very high standards on herself. She tries to distract herself by being useful to Melancholy, so it makes sense that when she’s shut down that she would go to someone else to try and get the same sense of comfort. I thought Doubt and Mizerka were both fairly weak characters without much depth until I saw this episode. They’re great characters with a real side fighting to be let out underneath the Ring’s restrictive influence.

The Rings alter their emotions so that negative feelings still remain…even if there is no reason for them. For example, Doubt is still loyal to Klondike, but he never actually vocalizes why he is so loyal. The likely answer to this is that he’s simply forgotten why, and continues to obey him because the Ring has convinced him it was an important promise. The same goes for Mizerka, who actually notices that her hatred for Ana is unwarranted now that Eve has forgiven him. The feelings of hatred remains thanks to the Ring, but they have no reason for existing. Once the Rings are removed, their real personalities start to shine. Mizerka is a woman who wants to be strong and Doubt is a chivalrous guy who always comes through in a pinch. Without the Rings, the extreme level of these traits are toned down so that Mizerka isn’t pleading people to rely on her and Doubt doesn’t blindly keep every single promise he’s made. If anyone’s ever played Disgaea 4, they’ll have the pleasure of knowing Valvatorez – a vampire who made a promise to never drink blood, and is reduced to eating sardines for the rest of his life. Promises can be deadly!

Ouchies x2

But I digress…back to our lovely pseudo-couple. These two managed to break free from the hold of the Rings almost entirely on their own. Kaito and Ana didn’t have to do much to get their real personalities to shine through. My guess is they’ll help Pinochle at the POG now, and finally act as a real team instead of separate members who bicker all the time. Mizerka will probably visit Eve too, which would make a nice little bonus scene for whatever episode has time to show that. I don’t expect a happy ending where Eve can magically paint again, but I’d love for them to have a quiet talk and maybe get Mizerka into painting. Pinochle is adorable without his Ring, so I’m looking forward to seeing more of the nice versions of Mizerka and Doubt!


Got Them Melancholy Blues

Too bad beauty sleep doesn’t make her beautiful on the inside u_u

So, Melancholy is a bitch. Despite living on this planet about half the time as anyone else on the show, she’s about thrice as bitter and belligerent. Melancholy has been pretending to get along with the Order all this time despite secretly hating them all for being repulsive lab rats, barely even worthy of licking the dirt off her shoes. Yes, Melancholy apparently has a real Orpheus Ring and Klondike…doesn’t. He seemed envious of her Ring as he stood over her sleeping form (yikes, more on that later…) which suggests that he doesn’t have one. He’s just a dude in a snazzy suit who knows how to pull strings from the shadows! This makes me wonder how the hell he’s going to be of any match for Kaito without any brain-enhancing bling on his wrist. Perhaps he’s mastered some Ring-less thinking technique that Kaito will have to try and copy? A sort of backdoor route to being a genius that doesn’t require you to go ballistic in Phi Brain mode? Man, I can’t wait to see his puzzle. The Order is only him, Freecell and Melancholy right now (aside from the members all over the world, like the Uno twins), so it won’t be long until that final showdown…

On a side note, either Klondike is a pedophile and likes keeping sleeping little girls close at hand or Melancholy is actually related to him. Noc suggested this in the comments section last week and it looks like it’s true! …Oh please God, let it be that and not a loli fetish.

Puzzles, Puzzles, Puzzles:Show ▼


Final Thoughts

I don’t have a lot to say about this episode, as it just felt like a way to pave a path between Mizerka and Doubt being the Order to them being on Team Kaito. A set-up episode. It was great to see another side of Mizerka and Doubt, but it’s a bit late to get me interested in the MAIN VILLAINS of the show. Now that I like them, I probably won’t see them again until the last episode aside from mini appearances! What a waste! Oh well, better late than never, I suppose. I did enjoy the drama with these two, especially how overly dramatic and lovey-dovey they were. In retrospect, the preview for this episode (shown at the end of episode 20) was pretty spot-on. This was intentional, just to remind us that heterosexual romance is a thing. Because, you know, sometimes you can forget when you’re watching Phi Brain and every single thing with a dick in a 10 mile radius of Kaito is attracted to him.

Preview: Time to learn what’s up with Melancholy and Klondike as Kaito gets up close and personal. Also, wait…what…Kaito’s already facing Klondike in a puzzle?

Next week: Men In Black side arc as puzzle aliens attack.


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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22 Responses to “Phi Brain S2 – 21”

  1. Jenanime4eva says:

    Potential Doubt/Mizerka romance in the air? 😉

    Oh look, Mr Chairman dude is back. I’d almost forgotten about him LOL.

    Hahaha, so this episode they basically recycled Gyammon’s metal beams gusha puzzle from last season but used a tag team format instead. Yeah, a bit lazy :P. Surely, they could have thought up another puzzle? Something more dynamic like the motorcycle racing puzzle would have been enjoyable to watch :).

    Gosh, Melancholy is one spectacular b*tch hahaha XD. I wonder if it’s the armlet or if it’s just her personality being naturally like that :P.

    Hmmmn, so Melancholy is actually wearing a real Orpheus armlet? Interesting…

    • Overcooled says:

      You bet! It’s the new couple I never thought I’d ship.

      I was disappointed that they reused Gammon’s old puzzle *sigh*. Couldn’t he have made a new one? He even had Elena helping him! Oh well, I guess they didn’t have time since they had to BUILD THE ENTIRE PUZZLE in one day somehow. <_< She's probably a lot nicer with the Ring. Something might have happened to make her a bit snooty, but I'm not sure what. No one ever suspects the loli...

      • Jenanime4eva says:

        A lot nicer with the Ring? Hahaha I sure hope not ;). That would make her real self one pretty scary loli XD.

        • Overcooled says:

          Gah, I meant without. This is what happens when you comment right after an intense study session…

  2. Rolca says:

    Melancholy used Dramatic Wind!
    Field bonus: Red Rose Petals!

    Melancholy already was at Prouder Horse last ep, having her come back to the castle was pretty random. Though the place she’s sleeping a seems new… It’s fun how we thought she couldn’t be the one with a real ring earlier.

    I have a screencap of Klondike from the previous episode where his glasses don’t shine and his eye color seems the same as Melancholy’s so I guess she’s his daughter. (in addition, his glasses’ color seems the same as Kaito’s but I don’t think there’s a link… or is there?)

    I was disappointed Gammon wasn’t solving the puzzle with Kaito. The Order members got a lot of rivalry build-up, but Doubt vs Gammon didn’t get any focus after ep5. At least Ana was awesome there!

    Kaito’s getting pretty reckless with his training… He’s working on becoming stonger, which could lead to some nasty stuff on him since stronger = Phi Brain = what the bad guys want?

    Poor Pinochle, rejected by everyone even when he works hard for their sake ;_;

    Doubt didn’t commit sudoku eh

    • Overcooled says:

      She went back to the castle to crush Mizerka’s heart, apparently. Amazing. She really has nothing better to do than hurt people and lounge around at Prouder Horse.

      Well, I think anime rarely follows normal genetics, so parents can have brown hair and POOF their kid has blue hair for no reason. :/ Anyways, interesting thought about Klondike’s glasses. If Kaito’s parents weren’t dead he could pull a “I AM YOUR FAAATHHERR” trick and make everyone roll their eyes until they fall out of their skull.

      I can’t think of any other way to train though! How else do you get better at puzzles? Even in the preview Klondike was like “uhh, that’s not practicing puzzles, that’s just studying.” The only real way to improve at puzzles…is to do puzzles. Yet there has to be another way, or else he’s going to go back into Phi Brain mode. Err, not sure how that works without his Ring though…

      Aww, I got the impression that when Pinochle said he was saved Doubt just thought “OH MAN, SHIT, I did all this stuff when I had that Ring” and so he quickly gets up to apologize to Gammon (in an odd way) while the time is still right. Before that he was being pretty nice to Pinochle, actually, and seemed genuinely happy to see him. Mizerka was too busy crying to notice him lol

  3. Noc says:

    Its an honor to be mentioned in-post by you! I said it on a whim before, but now I think Klondike is definitely either a relative of Melancholy’s or a parental guardian like the principal is to Kaito, cuz otherwise the ending scene with her sleeping is rather creepy… then again, creepers are nothing new on this show are they? Cubic watches Kaito sleep via machines all the time!

    I’ve never been a fan of boy/boy pairings in anime because its rarely actually there, but Phi Brain comes on so strong that even I’m feeling it. All of these one-sided romances involving guys wanting Kaito, they’re real. Totally real. Bravo Phi Brain! At last I won’t be enraged when I look and see nothing but yaoi flooding the Phi Brain fanfiction section (there isn’t much being written for it right now, but there should be!)

    But I do love me some heterosexual romance, so it was great to see Doubt and Mizerka acting so passionate. I’ve been hoping there might be more to them for a little while now, so when I heard the episode preview last week my heart leapt! I mean, they probably aren’t going to resolve this Nonoha x Kaito business, as anime rarely ever does, so I at least have my side pairings…more Elena x Gammon would be nice too…I don’t care about Chieno x Jikukawa at all though :/

    I sure am excited for Klondike’s puzzle! Although he has no ring, we’ve seen before that not being a solver doesn’t mean you can’t be a deadly giver. I’m also interested learning more about him as a person, his goals and motivation. I wonder if True Phi Brain Child Melancholy will play a role in the puzzle as well? And what’s Freecell going to say to Klondike? And what about Nonohaaaa!!?! Hurry up anime crew, you’re killing me here DX

    • Overcooled says:

      Haha, no problem. I was fully on-board with the idea of Melancholy being related somehow, and had to give credit where credit was due ;D If he’s just being a creeper then..this show has reached a new low.

      At this point Phi Brain isn’t hinting…These guys are canonically in love with Kaito. It’s great! I wish more anime had the balls to stick in boy/boy romance (because I AM a fan of it). Not as the main story or anything, just as a casual thing, you know? Anyways, Phi Brain has very few fanfics, which is a real shame. I guess it’s because the fandom for this show is so small.

      Doubt x Mizerka is probably the most het romance we’re gonna get XD Nonoha and Kaito probably won’t end up together since it will ruin all the aforementioned homoerotic subtext.

      There’s a lot that could happen next week. Klondike is a big mystery – and to suddenly have him go face to face with Kaito like this is exciting. I’m sure a lot of questions will be answered. …But we have to wait *sighs*

      • Noc says:

        I don’t hate boy/boy pairings specifically, just a lot of fanmade pairings that ignore canon facts and such. Like if someone were to pair Mizerka and Ana together and claim that the absolute disgust she showed for him in prior episodes was actually suppressed love or something… things like that… really bother me for some reason. Just one of my pet peeves. I would love to see more boy/boy romance like Phi Brain’s in other shows too, not just misleadingly vague subtext, because real homosexual relationships hardly ever get acknowledged in shounen and that kinda sucks :/. Het. pairings are usually my favorite though XP

        • Overcooled says:

          Ah, so you like the pairing to make sense canonically. I find also it harder to believe pairings where, say, the two characters are rivals in the anime. That’s mostly because I want the pairing to work and can’t find a good motive for them to get together though *sighs* Ah, the difficult life of a shipper with all of out idiosyncrasies.

          Probably the best homosexual romance I’ve seen in anime that was treated as just a run-of-the-mill thing would be in No.6. That was just great. However, we’re usually stuck with crazy hinting like in Tiger & Bunny. The het fans are the ones to get what they want, and I usually don’t support those pairings. :/

  4. BlackBriar says:

    Yikes! I see you’ll do anything for Phi Brain’s sake. A blender. Kaito has lost it. That Fool’s Puzzle looked really dangerous and it isn’t enough. He’s a glutton for punishment. I’m curious. How does solving puzzles make someone stronger? If anything, it just increases your intelligence but here they talk about it in such a way that you’d take it for physical strength. And troubling for Kaito, though I’m sure he doesn’t want to admit it, is that he knows his path could send him right back to being a child of the Phi Brain.

    I still don’t understand why Doubt would continue to be so loyal after finding out he was stabbed in the back. The only explanations in my mind are that either he’s completely forgotten the reason or he was probably an orphan so Klondike took him in and gave him everything he has in exchange for loyalty whereas he would have been on the streets all his life.

    Heavy emotions like the ones Doubt and Mizerka had buried inside makes a person unstable like when Cubic was scanning them. Since the Rings are basically made to block out emotions, they were so all over the place that it couldn’t keep them in check because some believe emotions are a liability.

    Promises are almost impossible to keep because of circumstances beyond one’s control, especially under duress but still, we try. I’ve never played Disgaea 4 but I can already tell that promise risks going up in smoke. What hasn’t happened in 20 years could all happen in one day.

    Melancholy… So much evil in such a little loli. That was just ice cold the way she threw everything in Mizerka’s face after she’s been so worried about her. But with all those roses in the scene where she dropped her, I have to say she has style. Ah, just look at me. I’m complimenting a spoiled, heartless brat. I wonder what bitter fate she’ll get in the end for her malice. A tractor to the face, anyone? For her gaining such privileges like knowing the truth and freely walking about at will, I’d say she’s more of a relative to Klondike. She does seem more at home than the other members.

    • Overcooled says:

      It’s like how practicing math problems makes you better at math. You notice patterns faster, and it trains your brain to think in a special way. However, Kaito’s done so many puzzles already that he’s probably not getting a lot out of this training…:/ Maybe Kaito should just practice sprinting and lifting weights so he can outrun all the deadly falling blocks and razorblades, hmm?

      Doubt either has a special reason, or the Ring has edited his feelings. Will we ever find out? D: Interestingly enough, Val keeps every single promise he makes in the game – including not drinking blood. Yet he’s a vampire and without blood he’s a weakling! Some people just have the type of personality where keeping promises is more important than the reasoning behind the promise. I’m a bit like that, so I can see why Doubt would stay true to his word to the bitter end.

      lol because someone that bitchy HAS to get their just desserts in time. I can’t wait! Then again, this is Phi Brain, so she’ll probably turn good in the end *sighs*

      • BlackBriar says:

        I think Kaito is already at a high state which leaves little room for improvement. Even the P.O.G is probably running out of puzzles at the rate he’s going. Since Cubic’s analysis are showing that his brain is accelerating again, maybe he’s already a match for Freecell.

        Doubt’s reasoning for doing things is just as mysterious as Freecell’s. Does he even have one anymore? That’s the most interesting question here. I certainly wouldn’t stick around and continue to help if I were used and thrown away.

        On Val. Why would he make a promise like that? Going on without blood means he should be dying of hunger. Everything I’ve seen concerning vampires, whether it’s movies, anime or manga, they all live off blood. His choice is basically a death wish. The only known exception to this rule is Karin (Chibi Vampire).

        If Melancholy turns out good in the end after all that wickedness, it might be bittersweet for me. She’s the closest thing to Avatar: The Last Airbender’s Princess Azula and she was certainly a piece of work. Melancholy’s deeds deserve a proper punishment.

        • Overcooled says:

          Yeah, I think Kaito has hit a plateau. Even though his brain is accelerating, he’s still weaker than he was with the Orpheus Ring. I don’t think he’s an even match for Freecell quite yet. Especially not with his ability to see the future. That’s a HUGE advantage for versus puzzles.

          If you like tactics games, I highly recommend playing Disgaea 4! It’s one of my favourite game franchises (ALSO VAMPIRES). Then again, I don’t think you have a PS3 if I recall correctly D: Anyways, if you’re interested, he stops drinking blood and is banished to the lowest level of the Netherworld. He used to be known as the strongest but now he’s stuck training slaves to be…good slaves. Ironically enough, he’s keeping a promise he made with someone who died years ago, so there’s not even a point to it anymore <_< Not sure how he can live without blood, but he seems to manage with sardines. Err, I got sidetracked there... AZULAAAA!!! If Melancholy has a mental breakdown, I will be so happy! I doubt it though. Melancholy is equal in terms of bitchiness, but she's pretty sane (relatively). I want her to get what's coming, lose, and revert into a meek little girl without her Ring. :3

  5. Yuushin says:

    That Melancholy is one evil little….loli xD
    She may be little, but when she bites- it hurts! xD Poor Mizerka TuT

    I didn’t thought I’d ship DauMize too. But they work unexpectedly well together 😀 *totally ship’s it* They were really cute in last week’s preview too <3 Kawawee~ lol xD

    When I saw glimpse of Klondike's eyes last episode I thought he could be Melancholy's father too, but I didn't comment on last episode ^__^;;; so heh xP
    But if he isn't than that scene in the room is just plain pedo/creepy xDDD Not to mention Freecell also walked in like it's his own place xD But, no~ they couldn't really meet outside in the hallway accidentally, no~ xD

    That Frecell's mom locket Nonoha have with her 24/7…..Need's to goooooo~ xD I get very bad feeling whenever she looks at it. When she took it out this episode on the terrace I was like "Good, now fling it over the fence with your monstrous strenght to the next town"
    But seriously! Ever since she got it she's been uncharacteristically sad and gloomy, and I find it bit unsettling. Even more that no one gives a damn! xD
    She seem's to be opposed to Kaito doing all those Gusha puzzles and risking so much for Freecell's sake, but she herself seem to have her mind set on him as much as Kaito does. Just we don't know what's she really thinking about this Freecell-drama.

    • Overcooled says:

      She’s scary! I don’t know why she cowers from Freecell when she’s so vicious herself!

      I guess Freecell still has access to everything since he used to be the leader of his little Orpheus Order subgroup. Maybe that includes a master key that lets him go wherever he wants?

      Oh man, I’m getting bad vibes from the necklace too. She looks at it so often that it’s basically a Chekov’s pistol – a disaster waiting to happen. Nonoha is way too focused on Freecell right now, it’s kind of eerie.

      • Yuushin says:

        Who knows, maybe it’s part of the act :/ Like with pretending to be Mizerka’s imouto~ I find it strange too. If it isn’t the act then I don’t know what it is. She’s the one who got Freecell to join, from the looks of it formerly her group in the first place :\.

        Maybe it looked like he was the leader because it was Kaito involved, and he’s the one who has the most unresolved issues with him of all members (and his mother too, which we know what mix this created in his head), so she descended in the shadows, so to speak xDDD

        But if you take a look at main poster for this season and look at how OO members are shown you’ll see she’s in the center anyway xDDDD No one really pays attention to the posters~! You never know where these hints can hide xD

        • Overcooled says:

          Oh my gosh, the poster. It was there all along…<_<

        • Rolca says:

          Maybe did she recruit Freecell on Klondike’s orders and regret it later? Freecell probably had many rage fits.

          I thought her being in the middle was just because they had to fit her top hat in the picture…

          • Yuushin says:

            Yes, yes..That has much more sense~ Klondike is the one pulling the strings behind the scenes after all 😀

            I thought so too. But if it wasn’t intentional then it’s funny coincidence at least :]

  6. gem2niki says:

    Yay a post! love your review~~!!!
    Didn’t think I would ship Doubt/Mizerka as well until recently. Mizerka is so pretty in this episode!

    I wonder if the staff ran out of ideas for puzzles…they’ve been reusing a lot. It was more refreshing to see a Gusha puzzle in the previous episode.

    • Overcooled says:

      Why thank you! :3 I’m going to be really sad when Phi Brain ends and I can’t watch it or write about it anymore…

      Mizerka looks really different this episode…I guess she looks more mature than everyone else because of her lipstick (and how they gave her an actual nose instead of an anime checkmark). Different in a good way, of course! I usually don’t like romance in my anime, but those two are the surprise couple that you just can’t hate.

      Ah, that might be why they’re reusing puzzles. It’s hard to think up a different puzzle every week. The dedicated puzzle creator for the show must have made almost 50 of them by now!

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