Psycho-Pass – 11

Psycho-Pass 010

Not everyone got what they wanted for Christmas this year.

I had decided to just put episodes 11 and 12 together into one post since I was so busy with Christmas posts, Christmas itself, and finishing off some final posts for SAO and Btooom!. I usually hate being so late that I have to squish two episodes into one post, but it seemed like the only way since time was a-ticking. What I didn’t realize was that episode 12 would be delayed until January. Oops. Now that I’ve sorted things out, here’s a very late Psycho-Pass post about my favourite episode of the series to date.

You know that feeling you get when the director blatantly cops out from a more risky move to go the safe route? For example, a side character may be killed only to be revived seconds later to ensure that the viewer feels happy. Attempting to please everyone with happy endings often dilutes the point of a story, especially when it comes to more serious things such as death. Urobuchi Gen doesn’t cave in to that sort of pressuring. He is brutal. Absolutely brutal. If watching Madoka has taught me anything, it is that this man will kill and torture his characters to make sure that they have learned an important lesson. If anything other than Makishima slitting the throat of Akane had occurred, the entire scene would have been a colossal disappointment.

I was chanting “please kill her, please kill her, please kill her” in my head like a silent prayer as Makishima prepared to cut open Yuki like a Christmas ham. Not just because I like seeing people die, but because Akane wouldn’t have been properly traumatized without a more permanent feeling of guilt being held above her head. This is going to be a major turning point for her. She’s been so good and righteous thus far; standing up for latent criminals while making conscious decisions about who she should kill or not. However, that’s all been guided by the Sibyl System.

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The entire police force relies heavily on their Dominators to tell them who they are allowed to kill and who they aren’t. They aren’t liable if they “accidentally” kill someone, because their gun is specifically programmed to only allow you to shoot those with high criminal coefficients. Normal police officers in our society have to consciously decide when and where to pull the trigger. This can allow our officers to avoid unnecessary violence, but it can also lead to officers making wrong decisions. How many cases have you heard of officers tasering or shooting people to death just because they “looked dangerous” when they were in fact innocent people? I don’t even check the news too often and I remember this happening a lot. It’s not a perfect system, but the police will be punished for making the wrong choice, so they make sure to really think about their actions in most situations.

There is no punishment with the Sibyl System. There isn’t even a need to think about whether or not to shoot, because the gun spits out a number for you and then chirps out a line that either says “don’t shoot” or “go nuts, Rambo.” The amount of actual cognitive processing required is greatly reduced, and we’ve seen how often the police just choose to snuff out valuable witnesses just because the gun told them to. They rarely capture criminals and put them in jail to potentially get a second chance – they just blow them to sticky strands they have to vacuum out of the rug. As long as the Sibyl System is accurate, this isn’t too much of a problem because on average it is probably a better predictor of future behaviour than a cop trying to make an assessment in the heat of the moment. There is still a paralyzing mode for criminals who aren’t terribly dangerous, after all. The whole thing falls apart only when people like Makishima stroll in.

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Silence for the grand finale, please…

I was right when I said that Makishima would most likely have a normal criminal coefficient. In fact, he is the goddamned posterboy for mental health based on Akane’s Dominator readings. He commits terrible crimes, but somehow remains completely composed. Makishima explains that a person’s will is not a factor in determining the criminal coefficient, so just by acting out according to his will, he is still within normal guidelines. As to exactly how his Psycho-Pass is pure white, even he is only able wryly answer “I don’t know myself.” I think part of his ability to elude Sibyl may be that he is a genuine psychopath.

A very small subset of criminals are classified as psychopaths if you use the actual definition. For example, Senguuji is most likely not a psychopath – he is just a murderer. There is a very important difference between the two. Psychopaths score above a 26 out of 40 on the Hare Psychopathy Checklist, which measures a bunch of personality traits found in psychopaths such as narcissism, shallow emotions and the tendency towards deception. This is the main way to diagnose psychopathy since not a lot is understood about it. What makes psychopaths so special from normal criminals is that they show no emotional or physical reaction when they do something really bad, such as murder someone. They are unable to generate feelings in response to events both good and bad, meaning that they actually do not feel guilty when they kill someone. Take Silence of the Lambs for example: Hannibal Lector kills a nurse while hooked up to a heart monitor, yet his heart rate rate never changes from baseline levels. Makishima does the exact same thing this week – his criminal coefficient eerily creeping lower and lower as he toys with his razor. It’s a powerful scene, and it really drives the point home that these numbers mean absolutely nothing if they’re measuring the wrong thing.

Perhaps the reason Makishima is immune to the judgements of the Sibyl System is that his body is not showing telltale signs of distress. Not a lot is known about psychopathy, so it could be reasonable to assume that they still aren’t able to properly assess psychopaths with an automated system in the future. His heart rate doesn’t go up, his blood pressure stays the same, and his mind is still functioning in a way that allows him to make logical decisions. Psychopaths are all very charming individuals who can function very well in society if they try to. A lot of high-ranking CEOs in business and surgeons are actually psychopaths because they either have to make cutthroat deals, or because they don’t get nervous operating on patients since they don’t care if they die or not.

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They are not the broken-down criminals who lash out in anger and impulsively kill people or do it for the thrill. They do it because they simply can, and it helps them achieve a goal. A willful goal. Killing someone to get the last pudding in the fridge is a plausible action for them since it gets them closer to what they want, and they don’t care what happens to anyone else in he process. It would be endlessly ironic if the only individuals capable of slipping through the Psycho-Pass radar…were psychopaths.

I think the series will most likely give us some other explanation for Makishima’s pure white Hue since this would require quite some research for anyone not in the field of psychology, but it’s still fun to imagine things that way. Furthermore, we do actually have quite a few studies about differences in the brain of a psychopath compared to a normal person, so it could be possible to tell in the future with some quick brain imaging. But…the Sibyl System isn’t really scanning things like that, is it? It measures someone’s…force field? What does that even mean? This cymatic scan can’t be very accurate if it skips out on important details like Makishima’s criminal coefficient. I’ve always assumed that the Sibyl System was around 80% accurate, but now I’m wondering if it’s measuring things that are completely off.

With this episode, the Sibyl System is really starting to be questioned. Makishima’s goal seems to be less structured around up-ending the system and more about helping individual people realize that they have free will and to allow them to exert it. He wanted Akane to make her own choice to shoot him so she could break away from her habits, but it didn’t work. In a society full of people who only do what Sibyl tells them, it’s no surprise that Akane is unable to take the plunge and make her own judgement of Makishima. She can’t do it. The punishment she receives for not meeting Makishima’s expectations is so severe that I’m sure she’ll be shaky for days. Her Hue should be cloudy at the very least. Finally, she has been broken.

Bonus Screenshots: Show ▼

Such a wonderful episode! There is even more to love than the  amazing scene where Akane is reduced to a quivering heap of useless limbs (which I devoted the entire post to discussing). I love that Senguuji refuses to leave even when the police force arrives, and inevitably dies as Kougami uses one of the oldest tricks in the book to kill him. Anime characters have this horrible tendency to press on despite having fatal wounds that would kill a man ten times over, and it always makes me wince to see characters keep fighting with broken ribs, blood pouring out of every orifice, and enough bullets in their body to sell supplies to Koko Hekmatyar. Although he tries to help Akane, he gets a headbutt from Masaoka to keep him in place. I’m sorry guys, but at this rate he is going to be the biggest badass out there.

The next episode won’t air until January 11th or so. So until then, have a Happy New Year and don’t let your Hue get too cloudy!

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What? No episode until January? I…I can’t…believe this…no..!

About

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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62 Responses to “Psycho-Pass – 11”

  1. BlackBriar says:

    I knew it. I knew that outcome was coming but still kept hope that it wouldn’t because Yuki was so cute. I’m beginning to see why people on MAL are calling Urobuchi Gen the “Urobutcher”. He shows no mercy to anyone. This was a cruel lesson for Akane to learn and what can be crueler than watching a best friend die in front of you while you’re there helpless. And has anyone noticed that all the victims we’ve seen killed with our own eyes are young girls? Surely someone has now seen a pattern.

    Makishima turned everything upside down. Him being the mastermind behind all the crimes that’s happened, I was expecting a high Psycho-Pass reading but soon found myself in disbelief that he was below level, moreover that it went to 0 and the Dominator wouldn’t fire. His reading’s lower than Akane’s. Something’s not right. How can his readings be so low that he can’t be judged since he’s a total sociopath? Even those who beat a lie detector test still reach a certain number. The “You’re not even eligible to be accused of or punished for sins” loophole doesn’t apply here. In the end, it just proves how flawed the Sibyl system is.

    Kogami once again proves he’s a badass going up against Senguuji with the odds against him but still won the fight even though he was shot continually. He survived the shots because it’s anime law and the script dictates that he lives. I liked the Destroy Decomposer function from the Dominator he used on the robot dog. They gotta tell us what other functions it has.

    A break period again. I hate it when they do this to good animes because it makes the wait unbearable. Not just Psycho-Pass but Zetsuen no Tempest and Robotics;Notes are following the trend as well and going on a break.

    • Overcooled says:

      Haha, Urobutcher is an accurate nickname. I never noticed that all the people murdered have been girls. The male victims (Kougami’s ex-partner and the guys at the factory for example) didn’t die before our eyes. I don’t think it’s intentional though.

      I think it would be too simple if he had a huge number. It would also make it too hard for him to get around normally. I kind of hope they give us at least SOME explanation aside from that he was just born that way. Just saying his will is enough to beat the system sounds sketchy. Still – it’s super cool that he’s able to cheat the system despite killing people without remorse.

      I’m using this time to catch up on anime, so I need the break in the end. I still wish I didn’t have to wait for Psycho-Pass ans Robono though :/

    • Namika says:

      The fact that he shows no mercy is very good in a way. Not a lot of authors risk killing off important characters (important by themselves or to other main characters) and sometimes that completely ruins the whole show to me. RIGHT, Naruto? Sure, there are characters you like and don’t want to see dead but that’s life, and most anime are definitely missing that sense of realism.

      I loved the fact that Makishima’s psycho-pass is white. Now that’s a real blow below the waist for the Sibyl system, isn’t it? Now Akane will wonder about the system she’s been living in for whole her life and I can’t wait to see that. And I don’t think Makishima is tricking the system too. He’s just not crazy, you know. His dream is to see a human soul in full bloom, now what’s bad in that? Nothing. But in the way he wants to see that flower bloom? Here’s the real problem, because the system can’t understand that. OOOOh, can’t wait to see what’s next! I bet there will be some kind of upheaval or revolution :3

  2. bonk says:

    It’s not like Akane could do anything on the matter, the Dominator just wouldn’t shoot and sh desn’t have qnything else. Well, there is a possibility that Makishima would release Yuki if Akane tried to get up to that catwalk, but I doubt it. No one in that situation could do a thing.

    Logically, the team should dig up powder weapons. Let’s see how it goes

    • Overcooled says:

      I doubt I’d do much better than her either. It’s an extremely dangerous situation where she could have missed and hit her friend. Her choices were to kill someone or let her friend be killed without any other options, and neither of those are pleasant.

      Yeah, they can’t use Dominators on him at all. I wonder if the police are even allowed to go after him if his criminal coefficient is normal though. If they are, then they need more traditional weapons for sure.

      • Namika says:

        I don’t think that Akane thought of accidentally shooting her friend. She did shoot twice, didn’t she? And if she shoots from the dominator, I don’t think she could have missed, because the end result for both weapon is one – shooting the target. What stopped her, I think, was that the shotgun was completely in her hands. Dominator is more secure and shoots only those people that it counts are way beyond saving. But a shotgun will kill just about anyone .

        • Seiryuu says:

          Technically, the chance of her actually hitting her target with a double-barreled hunting rifle she’s untrained to use is next to nil, even with both hands and careful aim.

          • BlackBriar says:

            Moreover, Akane is in era where regular guns are basically relics of the past. They were before her time so they were no longer a necessity. She would have most likely hit Yuki instead of Makishima. It’s traumatizing watching a friend die but it’s worse if they die by your hand, even if it’s by accident.

  3. AdeekYool says:

    Crime-fighting guide rules #911 : Bring along a voice recorder with you at all times. With modern technology available nowadays, that wouldn’t be too much to ask for now, is it?
    and why do I make a statement of such, would you ponder upon questioning?
    *WARNING: SPOILERS*
    Show ▼

    • Ying says:

      That’s illegal though. You can’t record someone without their knowledge or permission unless it’s stuff like security cameras which aren’t counted because it is on private property

      • Overcooled says:

        Wow, you’ve got your own way to catch Makishima all planned out! I can’t say I’d be so quick to just shoot him myself, so I think Akane did all she could do in the situation. At least she tried to shoot him, although she missed by a mile since she was so terrified and wasn’t even aiming properly.

        The recording would be pretty good hard evidence if you shot him and killed him. It’s not too useful if he’s kept alive, because I think they’d believe what Akane tells them about Makishima. They mostly just need to kill him, not imprison him, based on how the police force seems to work in this society. As for how legal that is, while I’m not familiar with the technicalities of the law, I think they wouldn’t mind someone slightly infringing on the privacy of a serial killer in order to save lives. They let the police just kill people who are guilty, so just recording their voice really doesn’t sound so bad.

      • Highway says:

        This is pretty much patently untrue. There are almost no places where you can’t unilaterally record someone (in the United States), and there are functionally *zero* places where the government can’t record an individual (zero with a warrant, which is comically easy to get, almost zero without a warrant if they don’t want to bother), especially if the government official is actually there in person.

        Even places with two-party consent laws universally waive them if the recorder is a government official (although some places actually try to use them in *support* of government officials, namely police, when it makes the police look bad).

  4. Hazou says:

    I love this episode especially at the end. I kept have oh shoot moments, every time his hue went lower and lower. I kept saying oh shoot oh shoot, but not as clean as that. It was that awesome. That made the episode, imo. If he was a complete psychopath as your analysis puts it, that be even better.

    • Overcooled says:

      The moment just got more and more intense the lower his number sank. It was just so good!

      • BlackBriar says:

        Every time his Psycho-Pass got lower, I just kept shouting “No way!!!”. It was unthinkable at the time.

        • Hazou says:

          Still unthinkable. On top of Gino fixing his hair in one episode and this, this is my favorite moment.

  5. Highway says:

    I had no problem with most of the episode, or with Yuki eventually dying. But this episode ruined a LOT of the show’s premise for me otherwise.

    I had a HUGE problem with the decision to make Makishima basically have a superpower. He’s a guy that the Sibyl system doesn’t work for, but not because the Sibyl system is fundamentally broken, but because he is special. Yes, people are arguing that this means the system *is* broken, but so far we’ve had absolutely no argumentation that this is the case, and a system that works 99.999% of the time, especially one that’s based on psychoanalysis by proxy of physical biometrics and a bunch of other things, can’t really be considered to be fundamentally broken. It hasn’t been argued that it’s been wrong about other people (except *maybe* Akane, but she’s not any sort of master criminal or even committing any crimes, so even if it shows her as clean, is it actually ‘wrong’?) just that other people have avoided the system. Even Senguji, with a body that was all robotic, was able to be read, so it’s not like a lie detector that just measures physical responses.

    So basically, Urobuchi gave his villain a superpower that nobody else has in order to let him give a cliched speech on some bullshit sophistry about human nature. And that really burned me up. It’s not even like his little ‘test’ of Akane would have been meaningful at all in any sort of realistic reference frame. Give someone who has never even *seen* a shotgun one, at a distance of 40 feet, and say that she can shoot the bad guy right next to the person she wants to save? Would it have been better or worse for Akane to have seriously lined him up, pulled the trigger, and killed Yuki herself because THAT is who she was going to hit, unless she was SO badly off to the one side that she managed to hit Makishima only. I’ll even give Makishima a pass that he wanted Akane’s actions to kill Yuki, instead of him doing it, for shits and giggles.

    But otherwise, the setup of that really ticked me off.

    • Namika says:

      You definitely have a point, but don’t you think that Makishima is the best possible villain for Psycho-pass? Someone with the level over 1000 would be too cliche and unrealistic. That way he would not be able to simply walk down the street. Political twist, as in someone from above looking over Makishima, may have been too much, and just destroy the logic behind his actions. Labeling him just crazy and inadequate would also ruin the show.
      Yes, Makishima, as a plot twist itself, is quite a bit cliche, but in my opinion this was the best villain for this anime, because he just turns everything upside down. He will make the main characters really doubt the effectiveness and even legitimacy of the Sibyl system, because his existence proves that human nature can not be measured with something as, in the end, simple, as a psycho-pass.

      • Highway says:

        There isn’t ‘logic’ behind his actions. I don’t really believe any of that crap he was saying about limits on people keeping them down. The only ‘logic’ that he exhibits is “I want to do it, so I’m going to do it.” Anything else he does, when it harms other people, becomes inhumanity in my worldview, and is thus forfeit.

        I don’t see where he questions the legitimacy of the Sibyl System, because it’s explained away as a superpower, as I said above. We have yet to see any systemic, widespread fault with the Sibyl System. In fact, the only two things we’ve seen that I believe is any sort of indictment of the Sibyl System itself is when people, apparently of their own volition, choose to overmedicate themselves in fear of the repercussions of that system and that temporary stress can raise someone’s number to something that would trigger irreversible action. And to me, the first is not indicative of a problem with the system, but of the stubborn irrationality of some human beings, something that no system will ever be able to eradicate, while the second is a good reason to keep human beings the ones who pull the triggers (note also that the lack of a Sibyl System sure doesn’t stop police wrong shootings now). It’s completely unrealistic to think that any such system would be 100% perfect anyway (which is why I wondered previously about whether the system adapts and evolves).

        • Namika says:

          Definitely, Makishima’s logic is “I do what I want”, but he seems completely adequate and that’s why I call that (well, at least more or less ^^”) logical. And there’s a reason for it too – the fact that people became, lets say, less expressive because of the sibyl system. I see that this point is rather wobbly, but to me, that’s completely fine.

          Yes, the first reason is because of the irrationality of some individuals, but in a way they are triggered by the existence of the system itself.
          But in the end, it’s pointless, whether there is a ‘highly effective’ system like that or not, people will never change and if you solve the existing problems, new ones will surely appear, just like people starting to overmedicate and becoming vegetables.

          It’s not Makishima who questions the system, he will make others question. Because he killed Yuki in front of Akane. Because he was the one pulling the strings behind all those serial killers and still, dominator didn’t recognize him as a criminal.

          • Highway says:

            Well, to me, the system should always be questioned, even while it seems to be working correctly. All systems should be continually questioned, lest they become miscalibrated. Hence why I’ve brought up the question of continual evaluation.

            • Namika says:

              Yeah, the system isn’t a trustworthy thing. But to me, Sibyl system is something even worse, because it prevents people from becoming complete. Every person needs to experience bad things, just knowing something just isn’t the same, you need to learn yourself.

            • Highway says:

              But I don’t see how the Sibyl System prevents bad things from happening to people, or how it insulates people from learning things. Unless you think that the arbitrary misallocation of one’s time and effort in order to find out that one sucks at something, or is otherwise not suited for it is a necessary part of growth, which I vehemently disagree with.

              From what I can deduce, Sibyl doesn’t keep people from getting sad or upset. It tells them when they are getting that way, in order for them to then correct it through the use of multiple means. Sibyl doesn’t keep people from making everyday wrong decisions and choices, and thus learning from them. I think it’s a poor definition of a ‘complete’ person that they would need to experience outright horror or life or death decisions to be considered ‘complete’, and that’s what it seemed that Makishima was arguing. If that’s the case, I hope I am *never* a ‘complete’ person, because I don’t want to have to face those kinds of decisions, and thus I make decisions as I go along to hopefully forestall those kinds of situations coming up.

            • Namika says:

              Okay, the effect that I think Sibyl system takes on people is this – yes, they do experience sadness, face problems, etc. The system doesn’t prevent that from happening, but it effects people in a way that they kind of close up to any influence that can possibly make their psycho-passes darker. Roughly speaking, everything a person does is centered around Sibyl. Yes, they live their own life, but the thought about their color becoming darker is constantly there, so, in a way, the Sibyl system is like shackles. It keeps you safe, but also has a collar around your neck. Of course, this feeling wouldn’t be so strong, but still, that’s something I can’t accept and acknowledge.

              And for the definition of a complete person. I didn’t say that you must fall into pits of hell and come back to be complete, that’s exaggerating. These things are different for all people, and what I find terrifying may not affect you in the least. Though that’s more of a subject of personal opinion, but for me, this is absolute truth – that to a certain point, you should also experience pain, because it’s a part of life as well. That way you learn, you grow up. Life is beautiful, but it’s not all pink and rainbows, so you should see and get a taste of both to bring it all into balance. That’s what Psycho-pass world is more or less missing because of the Sibyl system.

            • Highway says:

              I can see some people reacting that way, but I wouldn’t think it’s a major everyday concern of most people. Most people would be used to the things they do, and go through life doing things they way they always do, without being obsessed about any one thing, whether it be their hue color or their hair color. And if for some reason, they did get to a depressed state where they needed treatment, then the system would tell them, they’d go get treatment, and be back on the way to better.

              I just don’t see how Sibyl prevents people from experiencing those same things that cause us hardship now. It’s not like anyone plans to have bad things happen to them (like a friend or relative dying, an accident, a severe illness). Nobody schedules them. Nobody encourages them. And I don’t see that the system would prevent people from trying hard or frustrating things, except that it would be giving them feedback on their mental state. We’ve talked about it limiting career choices, but I haven’t seen where it limits hobby or recreation choices, because those haven’t seemed to require the approval of others.

            • Namika says:

              Yes, Sibyl doesn’t prevent bad things from happening, but it changes the way people see and feel these bad things.
              Yes, it gives you feedback on your mental state when you’re depressed, but that way it just solves the problem for you with therapies. While living in a world like that I think, you become almost sterile. Yes, it’s also great and very convenient, that you can see what mental state you’re in and can stabilize and, let’s say, calibrate it but after a certain point you can become a doll that’s always smiling. Or a lifeless vessel, like Oryo Rikako’s father, for example.

              Remember the woman from the first episode? After she got kidnapped and raped by that crazy dude, her crime rate jumped up to 160 or so, and yet she didn’t do anything bad. She just experienced excessive amount of stress and suddenly became an acceptable target for the dominator. That’s what I’m talking about and that’s one of the few things that are just very wrong about dominators and Sibyl system in general. A machine is just not suited to judge a person and decide, do they deserve to live. That’s something that even people aren’t always suitable for. A person can’t always define what’s good and bad, let alone a single computer.

  6. Highway says:

    I think Spammy also doesn’t like comments that are critical of shows. :)

    • BlackBriar says:

      It was the same with your comment on the BTOOOM! review. Maybe comments that critisize attracts Spammy more than regular ones.

    • Overcooled says:

      Thanks for being patient with Spammy ^^;

  7. anaaga says:

    This makes me wonder on the basis the Sibyl system measures crime. Do they measure it on one’s heartbeat and things you mentioned, OC? No matter how great it is, Sibyl is just a machine, so I don’t think it can look into the human soul yada yada..
    If Sibyl measures crime on the heartbeat thingy, then normal citizens can be treated as criminals too. That sucks

    • Namika says:

      And when our main characters realize that, BOOM! That’s when things will get interesting, ne? ;3

    • BlackBriar says:

      The thing that makes the Sibyl system flawed is that it makes decisions based on calculated guesses, what it believes is easy to judge, what should and what should not be. Humans are no such things because they never remain the same. They adapt to situations and improve on them. If they get into trouble once, they will learn from that mistake and avoid it the next time.

    • Highway says:

      And my response to that is that clearly this system is far more sophisticated than that, and has a far better track record than that would imply. Otherwise it would not be in nearly the widespread use it is.

      Perhaps this is one of the reasons I’m willing to accept that the system is not as fundamentally flawed as so many other people believe it is, and why I don’t find the world in this show as much of a dystopian nightmare as others: because I can’t accept that the system is as simple, buggy, and easily fooled as most other people do. If it had truly shown itself to be so flawed, it’s hard to believe it would have stayed in usage long enough to be so ingrained within the society. Therefore, I accept the premise that the system works in the huge majority of cases, and we are seeing, within this show, the one (or two, if we are believing that Akane is actually possessing this same characteristic) super rare cases (and hence why I refer to it as a superpower) that it does not actually work.

      Humans, by and large, are not as willing to give up their agency as I think so many are wont to believe.

      • Overcooled says:

        It probably doesn’t just use physical cues since those alone are very inaccurate. I’m not sure what it actually scans, but it somehow figures out how the mind works. It can’t measure the soul (that would just be magic then, not science), but it can always look at the brain. I really do hope it’s as accurate and well-understood by the people who made it as they claim.

        The system isn’t that bad in the grand scheme of things. Whenever a corrupt power is in control, they are usually overthrown…That’s a pattern history supports. So then Sibyl is probably just a system with slight problems – enough to make life hard for some people, but not enough to provoke people to rebel against it. So far it seems like it works on the majority of cases, but I wonder if that’s because the Sibyl system is categorizing too many people as latent criminals. If it has a low threshold number, then they will end up limiting the rights of a lot more people than needed. This isn’t so bad if they’re just sent to therapy (a minor nuisance), but incorrectly being assigned as an Enforcer when the person may be in almost no danger of committing a crime is harsh. Not as bad as jail, but you lose a bunch of rights and get stuck with a really dangerous job.

  8. Gecko says:

    I knew Yuki was going to die. As soon as she was thrown into the mess, I knew it. Honestly, Urobutcher strikes again, and this time it wasn’t so surprisingly, at least to me. Overall, losing a friend will really change Akane. She’s supposed to be the psychological beauty, and I can see that she’s going to be falling out of that position. Best case scenario with Urobutcher is that Akane becomes just an Enforcer in the end. (She has several routes: staying a strict Inspector- impossible, demotion to Enforcer, death, or breaking out finally, taking some sort of Makishima route) Of course, I can’t see that happening. The first few minutes of the first episode already show that we have a final showdown, with no Akane.
    Makishima’s number surprised me, but then again, the fact that he didn’t just shoot Yuki right there also surprised me. But he wanted to give Akane the chance out of the system, breaking out of what she’s always supposed to do. Her Hue was probably so clear because she followed the rules and wasn’t a threat. But then again, Makishima is white. White usually is seen as being “clear” but really, it’s made of all the colors combined. So Makishima could just be one of those 700-scoring students, gone rather rogue. He could have done everything and instead chooses to watch other people doing it all. It wouldn’t surprise me if he had been part of the police at some point.
    As for the irony of missing the psychopaths within the system, I think we just have to look at the title: Psycho-pass. The psychos get a pass on being caught.

    • Overcooled says:

      I wasn’t sure if he was gonna do it! I’m so glad he did. So you think Akane will somehow go missing in action (by death or some other cause) and then Kougami will be the one to face Makishima? I remember the opening scene, but it could be possible that she just wasn’t there yet. Ah, I just don’t want Akane to die since she balances out Kougami so well.

      I would love for Makishima to be a psychopath: smart and charming, but very dangerous. It’d work well with the title of the show, right? But we’ll see. They might just explain him being pure white as a freak occurrence, meaning he’s the only one like this.

  9. Liza says:

    Dang, this episode was INTENSE on every level. I was so scared for poor Yuki and of course she kicked the bucket. T_T I could understand why Akane was acting the way she did. All of her training focused on the Dominator being right and for it to suddenly be useless was probably a huge shock. And also with the system, if Akane had shot at Mikishima then her hue might get cloudy to the point that she would be considered a latent criminal. Although I think she’s going to need a lot of therapy after witnessing something like that…

    As for Mikishima, oh he’s bringing out everything I’m learning in my psychology classes. Obviously he seems to be a psychopath. I’m reserving judgement though since this is an anime and well maybe there’s something else up with him that we don’t know about although, yeah, psychopath.

    • Namika says:

      I don’t think Makishima is crazy at all. He’s quite adequate it’s just that his, lets say, tastes, are a bit…. specific.

      • Highway says:

        He’s a non-human beast. Anyone who would kill another non-threatening human being for his own pleasure is inhuman and shouldn’t be tolerated in the world.

        • Namika says:

          Definitely, this is absolutely terrible. But that doesn’t make him crazy. He’s very cruel but in no way is he crazy or inadequate.

          • Highway says:

            That’s a rather specific definition of ‘crazy’, then. Sociopathic and psychopathic is generally recognized under the rubric of ‘crazy’ isn’t it?

            • Namika says:

              Yes, it is. But I’m saying that Makishima isn’t crazy :) you don’t need to be crazy to be cruel and evil, right ?

            • Overcooled says:

              Well, he’s a serial killer so something is off. He may speak eloquently and sound lucid, but I’d say he’s not a mentally sound person if he gets off on murder. It depends on your definition of crazy, I suppose. That’s part of why I like him so much – because he’s so wrong, yet Sibyl says he’s in the right.

            • Namika says:

              Weeeel, you’re probably right on that. He’s not like CRAZY crazy, inadequate or random or hypoenergetic or extremely short-tempered. But he’s messed up in a way I, personally, would not define as being crazy.

    • Overcooled says:

      Whatever decision she chose, she’d probably end up cloudy. Either way, someone dies right in front of her and it’s pretty much her fault. I wonder how she’s going to recover from all this.

      Okay, good, another psych student tentatively agrees that Makishima meets the diagnosis for psychopathy. Unless he does something later on to disprove it (because yes, this is anime and anything can happen) then I’m sticking with that.

      P.S. Liza, I might have said this before but I like your icon. Violaaa~~

      • BlackBriar says:

        It’s going to have a profound effect on her mind because not only was she not able to save her best friend and it’s made her guilty, there’s the words Ginoza burned her with at the end of episode 10 regarding not keeping a watch on Kogami: “How do you feel about someone dying because of your own incompetency?”.

  10. Namika says:

    This was so cool!!! I’m actually glad that her best friend got killed. Not because I disliked her, she was actually really nice, but because I think this will be crucial to the plot. After this, Akane will start thinking about the whole psycho pass system and maybe even turn tables at some point. I’m going a bit too far, aren’t I ^^”

    Senguji deserved my total respect in this episode. Though he’s still a creep. How he killed Rikako… and I liked her messed up personality TT^TT

    Why yes, Kougami-san, your abs make me feel a lot better!! >>

    JANUARY. TT^TT that’s not fair! ><"" I want to know if Akane's psycho-pass got darker! I want to see some more of comforting Kougami TT^TT darn iiiiiiiit~

    • Kyokai says:

      This is the 55,555th comment on Metanorn. Way to go, Namika for making it. ^^

      • Namika says:

        Wow, that’s a great milestone! way to go Meta (≧∇≦)/

        • BlackBriar says:

          Nice! Great milestone, Namika.

          • Namika says:

            (○^ω^) teheee~
            The 100 000th comment will be mine tooo~!! >3 mwahahahaa

            • Overcooled says:

              Congrats on the comment milestone!!!

              I wonder if Akane would have enough power to change it alone…probably not. Something major (and bad) would have to happen before they change things. Or a huge uprising. I’m really curious to see where they’ll go with the story next. Will they actually change Sibyl or just learn to work with it? That’s why waiting until January is so hard. Ughh.

            • Namika says:

              There are so much possibilities! They may focus only on Akane’s troubles and inner battles, on Makishima’s story or take it up to a higher level and throw in an uprising or something. urrrgghhhhhh can’t wait to seee~

              Psycho-pass is turning out really really well. I love it when shows give me something to think about. And something to occasionally look at too. :3

  11. Yippy says:

    I think that Makishima’s condition might have something to do with his genes or with his upbringing. Although, I’d have a hard time accepting that genes and “luck” were all it took to create this psychopath.

    Anyway, Akane looks set to harden after meeting Shougo. I wonder if the emotionless Akane in the OP can tell us something about the direction she’ll take now?

    Although Sybil does seem to take into account physical factors and psychology, it fails miserably when analyzing context and its biggest blind spot-actual intent.

    I’m not well-versed in psychology and I can’t think of much to detail about Sybil and its methods, so thanks for pointing out what a psychopath really is. I assumed that Senguji was one because psychopaths to me are people who derive pleasure from killing. I forgot that psychopaths actually have no emotion at all.

    Anyway, great post and references. I’ll be looking forward to Jan 11!

    • Overcooled says:

      If that’s the case, then more people should also have the same ability as him. Other people would get lucky too and have the same condition – be it from genetics, their environment, or both. But what could it be then? I want to know!

      I’ve been wondering about the OP. She has that weird outfit on and looks totally cold. Perhaps she’ll try to become more cold-blooded so that she can pull the trigger when she meets Makishima again. That will be a stark change for sure if it happens.

      The word ‘psychopath’ is thrown around really casually most of the time to mean ‘killer.’ It’s just a normal thing people do. Even I do it, because it gets the point across. If you’re looking at the actual definition in psychology, it means something else though. Learning about psychopaths is actually really fun, so I couldn’t help but talk about them ahaha. Thanks, Yippy! Glad you liked it!

      • Yippy says:

        Don’t we all, Overcoled, don’t we all? XD

        The outfit looked like a metaphor, but I can’t for the life of me figure out what it means. Or maybe, it’s just ornamental…

        Pop culture can do scary things to words sometimes… And you’re welcome! =)

      • Highway says:

        Which weird outfit are you talking about in the OP? The two that Akane has are the basic skirt suit she’s always wearing, and that minimalist swimming one (which I was wondering if that’s what allows the nano / holo clothing that she shifts). I kind of took that as a metaphor for the opening of the series, where she ‘saves’ Kougami by shooting him when he was ‘drowning’ by being uncaring about his enforcement actions. Perhaps it will come around to have another meaning later.

  12. Irenesharda says:

    We’ll, it was exactly as I thought, Makishima has in incredibly low crime coefficient, which makes since since a true psychopath finds absolutely nothing wrong with that they’re doing. Their brain is wired differently and they lack the ability to connect to the emotions of others. Most of them are incredible manipulators, they can act like the rest of society when they want, but can change back to their original selves on a dime. The Sybil system just doesn’t work on a person like Makishima.

    Akane’s complete reliance on her Dominater shows the reason why such a society will eventually fail in the end. They are so reliant on the Sybil system that they no longer trust intuition or common sense. She could have saved her friend if she had put down the Dominater and held the shotgun with both hands, but she’s so flabbergasted that the system won’t work on this guy, that the system can be wrong, that she doesn’t even know what to do anymore.

    • Highway says:

      Something I pointed out in my blog posts (on my other blog at the time) was that there is no way that Akane could have saved Yuki. Not with the shotgun, not any way. If she had fired a shotgun in that situation, she’d at best have injured both Makishima and Yuki. Most likely, she’d have missed everything because she had no idea whatsoever how to use it.

      I disagree with your premise that relying on tools like the Dominater are a harbinger of the fall of a society. As I pointed out in earlier comments, Makishima is essentially a supervillain with a superpower. And I see no reason to indict Akane when she encounters something that is supposed to be impossible. As the show continues, she learns from this experience. That’s what the key to society is: learning and improving.

      • Irenesharda says:

        My point was that at least with a shotgun she had a chance of stopping him, maybe it would have ended badly, but with her only using the Dominater, there was 0 chance of it Not ending badly.
        To me, Makishima doesn’t have superpowers but he simply is an anomaly that the Sybil system hasn’t truly accounted for, sure they have a name for what he is, but still, have taken no measures for a person like him.

        I say that Akane’s complete reliance on the Dominater shows how a society like this will eventually fail, because she’s doesn’t really know how to make her own decision. A cop today could make a judgement call, Akane can’t because her gun won’t let her, Sybil won’t let her. A society that’s completely reliant on such a system that they lose their own will, will fail in the end unless something is changed. You are right that society is all about learning and changing is true, however if there is no change and Sybil stays and takes more and more control away from the human will, you might as well be living under Skynet. Society will have ceased as we think of it.

        • Highway says:

          Well, you’ll see later, but you’re judging far too early. Akane, AND all the others, do show they have the ability to learn. You’re making the same assumption that a ton of other people did during the show, based pretty much solely on the word of a psychopath, that Sibyl has robbed humanity of some ability to learn and grow. Akane’s not particularly special in that regard.

          And I’m not sure that leaving that judgment up to police is entirely a good thing. I cannot blame Akane at all for not using the shotgun in this case. She has no idea how it works, she has no idea what it will do. And there was zero chance of it not ending badly, whatever Akane did, because it was Makishima’s show. He knew it would end up with Yuki dead, and it was going to from the very beginning, because that’s what he wanted and he was in control.

          I argue that Makishima has a superpower because it’s functionally the same. The rules of the world don’t apply to him because the writers wanted it that way. To me, that diminishes him as a character.

          • Irenesharda says:

            I’m pretty far into this series and nothing has as of yet changed my position, but we’ll see. As you said Makishima actually is one of my favorite characters, he’s a psychopath but I agree with pretty much everything he’s been saying. A society that is so dependent on such a system is unhealthy and will eventually rot from within if nothing is done.

            However, you know by now we practically disagree on everything, so this really isn’t a surprise. 😉

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