Psycho-Pass – 07

She’s really handy at fixing things around the house, you know~

It’s hard to squeeze in Psycho-Pass with so much going on, but I find time. Exams, an unhealthy addiction to Persona 4 Golden, and a mixture of minor injuries and maladies have taken up a lot of my time. With bruised fingers slowed by the sluggish stupor of a cold, I bring you this blog post with love. Lots of love. I always add extra love when GRUESOME MURDERS are the centrepiece of an episode.

Where oh where do I even begin? I guess it’s best to start small, and on the police side of things. There’s relatively little attention paid to Kougami and Akane this week, in favour of letting us get to know the criminal masterminds a little better. This is mostly because our stars of the show are taken off the case. Kougami is straight up forbidden to do any work on it, and Akane is tasked with watching his sexy abs 24/7 so he doesn’t run off and do something drastic.

I don’t blame Ginoza for coming to this decision, since Kougami will most likely actively search for clues to prove this is the same as the Specimen Case instead of being unbiased in his deductions. However, it’s very likely that the cases actually are connected and Kougami would actually be a greater help than any other Enforcer or Inspector. I expected Akane to follow her orders and do her best to keep him out of trouble…but she ends up conspiring to worm back into the case with him. Instead of holding him back, she’s going to help him find the truth and come to terms with his partner’s death. I guess an alcohol-swigging police girl like her isn’t as strict and rule-abiding as I thought. I’m sure Kougami’s shirtlessness was also rather persuasive in a way…

Me too, Akane. Me too.

As these two plot their comeback, the terrifying daily life of Oryo and her benefactor, Shougo, takes the spotlight. To understand why Oryo is killing people in this manner without so much as flinching, we must first understand her father’s career and raison d’être. He’s the one who inspired her to become a killer, although not on purpose. I’m not sure if Shougo and Oryo are on the same page here in regards to just what Rouichi Oryo was trying to do with his work. Shougo seems to be interpreting things in a way that says “isn’t society messed up now?” whereas Oryo’s version seems like a more cynical vision of humanity itself. They may just be two sides of the same coin, but their descriptions of Rouichi Oryo do differ slightly. I guess the only one who can truly understand the artist’s intentions is the artist themself.

Oryo adores her father’s work as a powerful reminder that humans cannot be truly human without feeling despair. Assuming that he is following Kierkegaard’s theories, despair is described as being “unconscious of your self.” And in a sense, animals do not have this. They do not sit and realize they are alive, and they do not think about their own mortality or existence. They simply…exist. Therefore, Oryo sees her father’s cruel and violent pieces of art as ways to enlighten people about being conscious of their own self; to understand the importance of despair and embrace it.

On the other hand, I got the feeling that Shougo saw Rouichi’s work as a reminder that we must become aware of our dark side and try to control it. It’s by studying and confronting those dark parts of humanity and our selves that we can conquer it. This desire to control lead to the Sibyl System and a whole slew of medication and treatment systems. There’s a need for change there in his description that I didn’t quite see in Oryo’s, although maybe she just used the abridged version of her speech since she had a dead body to tend to. I can’t imagine that would leave her bed sheets smelling like roses if she left it for too long.

What girls REALLY do at sleepover parties.

Rouichi is a fairly normal guy – despite his creepy art – and lives a normal life until the Sibyl System becomes a major unit in society. This is when he loses his will to live and gets addicted to stress care. What else does he have left to achieve with his artwork? Our darkest sides have been labelled with pinpoint precision and numbered like specimens. There is no need to learn how to conquer it, because there is medication to do that instead. Pills, tablets, injections, therapies, nasal sprays…probably even little patches like nicorette strips that you just pop on and head out the door with! With the demand to stay within a certain range of mental stability strongly in place, it makes sense that pharmaceutical companies would respond by pumping out stronger medications to keep people smiling and stress-free. There’s all this pressure to stay sane constantly pushing people. It’s easy to see why some people would turn to drugs, and thus create a boom of “stress care.”

Much like the happiness drug soma in the book Brave New World, the citizens in this show take (what I assume to be) depressants or sedatives or some kind to remain calm. When citizens are happy, they are less likely to rebel, which keeps the status quo going. It wouldn’t be so bad if they actually needed the pills – both in Brave New World and Psycho-Pass.

The reason people are taking these drugs isn’t because they’re sick.It’s because of the Sibyl System. So now there’s a group of people who are so obsessed with passing Hue Checks that they just leave everything to stress care medication. Shougo said it best…we need stress to live. Cortisol (a hormone released during times of stress) is good for you in medium-sized doses to keep your body going and maintain alertness. You will do worse on a test if feel no stress than if you feel a little bit nervous. So while eliminating stress keeps you from going cuckoo – it can put you in a catatonic state. Those meds are either really strong, or being heavily abused to be so potent as to cause heart failure. Are people really that desperate? In the process of doing that, they get addicted, and probably don’t even remember why they were taking the drugs in the first place. I like how the Sibyl System has SO MANY ramifications in so many different areas of society. I doubt “stress care” is the only special, medical treatment for people who want to keep out of trouble from Sister Sibyl.

Now, you can either choose to get medical treatment to stay sane, use mental willpower, or go full out psycho and murder people. Oryo goes for option C. She has no problem killing people in the most eerily serene manner, and every scene with her in it doesn’t hold back in showing that side of her. I originally thought Shougo just did all this for his own whimsical enjoyment, but he may have more of an agenda than that. He badmouths the current state of society and hates how people live their lives under the Sibyl System. Perhaps he’ll be the one to try and actually change things. It would be easier for him to find potential criminal clients if there wasn’t a constant scanner finding them and scooping them up before he can assist them. Not that such a thing has stopped him thus far. It would just make things go a lot smoother. Shougo, Oryo and Guseong…I love them all. Hail to the villains of Psycho-Pass!

Bonus Sculptures: Show ▼

The creepiness was cranked up this week by quite a few notches. I wouldn’t even call them notches anymore. More like entire full rotations of the dial all the way up to “EXTREME PSYCHOPATH.” I wasn’t so fond of Oryo at first because she seemed like a flat character who was only defined by her artistic murderers, but she’s got quite the personality and motivation under all that. I’m surprised that they built her up so much to the point where we knew her exact ideology behind her artwork and got to see gratuitous footage of her…ahem..artistic process. Now that’s my kind of fanservice. I was grinning ear to ear by the end of the episode when we finally see some live bait writhe in fear – not yet immortalized through plastination. The terror! Her lack of emotion! Her joy in cutting up bodies! I take everything back – Oryo is incredibly batty and a wonderful character. Even Shougo’s helper didn’t want to stick around for the main event because he doesn’t like blood.

Do these sweatpants make my butt look big? Good. Gotta show off this hot booty to keep people reading and watching.

About

A terrifying hybrid of 'extreme sadist' and 'third degree black belt.' She sates her hunger for violence and human suffering with video games, anime, and blogging about a combination of the two.
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7 Responses to “Psycho-Pass – 07”

  1. BlackBriar says:

    The anime gets more disturbing every episode. Maybe I should start watching this at night with the lights off. Damn, Rikako is sick. A psychotic lesbian murderess that charms girls, kills them, sleeps with their corpses, dismembers them and reassembles the bodies into art to place in the public. That’s beyond creepy and yuri necrophilia. OC, we need a diagnosis on this girl. Her insanity and sophistication makes for a potent combination and makes me think of her as a combination of Yuno Gasai and Avatar’s Princess Azula (If Azula was into girls, that is). Being daddy’s little girl, her desire for revenge makes sense. The Sibyl system basically took her father’s will for living.

    I was curious about what the title of the episode “Symbolism of Bletilla Striata” meant. Apparently “Bletilla Striata” is a species of orchid. A Japanese orchid with white-striped leaves and slender erect racemes of rose to magenta flowers; often cultivated; sometimes placed in genus Bletia. Maybe Rikako sees her “art” as flowers. Each body was found with flowers decorated around them and there are some in her father’s portraits.

    The conversation between Makishima and the old man talking about the relevancy of society and their advances in technology was similar to that of Kirei and Gilgamesh of Fate/Zero. Makishima’s dialogue gave us more understanding of how their society works, raising some valid points and also gave us a little insight on Rikako’s twisted criminal mind. Did anyone notice? The scene between the conversation and Rikako being in awe of her father’s obscure portrait, there was Beethoven’s symphony music playing in the background. Particularly Beethoven’s symphony N° 9.

    • Highway says:

      I try to watch this show on Saturday afternoons while it’s still light outside. Thankfully, it hasn’t been a gory show… yet… because that would really turn me off of it. And it’s not amazingly deep as a psychological thriller (at least by my reckoning). It’s just good storytelling.

      Hmm, I thought the overt symbolism of pretty much *any* orchid was considered to be, shall we say, “womanly”. Granted the Bletilla Striata doesn’t hold as much resemblance as other orchids I’ve seen, but it’s still not that far off. I don’t know if there are other aspects of that flower that would symbolize the twisted nature or rapaciousness of Rikako, but I don’t see any right off the bat.

      • BlackBriar says:

        Psycho-Pass comes pretty close to a psychological thriller. The sadistic way Rikako takes pleasure in killing people then cutting them up to be assembled as sculptures depicts a sick and depraved mind. It’s as if she isn’t a bit human but on the other hand, she’s more human than those who’ve completely relied on the Sibyl system. It creates a paradox. Humans, in nature, are purely capable of cruel and twisted actions so in a way, she’s being human as much as possible but in her own way.

        • Highway says:

          I mean mostly it’s effect on me. The show really doesn’t make me uncomfortable when watching it, and doesn’t rely on shock or overamplified drama to make itself interesting.

        • Overcooled says:

          I’m glad the show isn’t scaring everyone off. I can’t always tell what’s too much for others. I loved this week’s episode, but my mom is starting to get creeped out, haha. I really like the direction things are going in since I like shows that take the psychological thriller route but don’t try TOO HARD to be grim, bloody and/or clever.

  2. d-LaN says:

    Woohoo! Time to marathon P-P since I am free now! And I am NOT watching it during nightime…

    …………………………………..

    Oh dear God…. this new psycho lesbian art murderess….. At least her “art” is “better” looking than Carter and Ryunnosuke one lol. (I have not seen the uncensored ver btw, and not planning to do it) Still creepy though. They should not meet each other and I don’t want to know wht “masterpiece” they can make together.. ==; Somehow I can sit through such shows while esting… (Though I did pause eating at several scene…)
    And since I am WAY late to the party and not being a philosopher I think I will stop here…

    Somehow I missed tht shot of Kougami abs while I am viewing it lol. And I totally ship Yayoi x Blondie.

    Also, any1 noticed the setting in this few episode is kinda like KnK: Oblivion Recorder??

    • Overcooled says:

      I wish I were free…D:

      At least she makes her art neat. I think those two just made giant, bloody messes and found it to be beautiful somehow. :/ I can eat while watching anything…except bugs. Then I imagine that I’m eating bugs and it creeps me out. Blood and gore is okay though!

      How could you miss such a wonderful ab shot? ABS!

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