Strike Psych Witches
|Here we are for part 2 of the flashback! Hyoubu is wrapping up his story by now as Andy is probably about to pass out from boredom. That’s not to say that I found this episode boring. In fact, this is my favourite episode of the series aside from the amusement park one hands down!|
If episode 7 was the slow, plodding set-up then episode 8 is the intense climax. The action just keeps going. Even after the one on one fight is over, a submarine comes out of nowhere and shakes things up. Heck, even when that’s over there’s hardly enough time to blink between Hyoubu celebrating with his friends and then getting shot 3 times in the timeskip. The relentless pacing and way things constantly escalate made me get more and more excited until finally the moment we’ve all been waiting for happened. The payoff was really worth it.
The dogfight was not only very fluid and exciting to watch, but it allowed Hyoubu to break free of some mental shackles imposed by his father. Having spent his childhood with a grief-stricken, anti-ESP father made him extremely wary of his abilities. His comrades help him realize that his abilities are nothing to be ashamed of, and that they can be used for good when they are controlled properly. Once free, his abilities improve quite a bit. I like how he went from not even wanting to change the chain of his pocketwatch to letting it sail into the depths of the ocean without even noticing it. Sure, throwing away mementos is kinda cliche in anime, but it worked well because it wasn’t overly emphasized. It just fell off him and he either let it slip or was so focused that he didn’t notice. Either way, I doubt he wrote any more letters from then until the timeskip.
The transition from dogfight to submarine battle was great too. It somehow made things more intense as the fighter plane made a re-appearance and actually helped Hyoubu out. I pegged the guy as a total jerk, so his co-operation was a pleasant surprise. The only weird thing about this scene is…these are dolphins. I know they’re really important dolphins but does anyone else find it really silly that the one creature with amazing precognition skill is the dorkiest animal in the sea? Does the phrase “psychic dolphin” not make you want to giggle or at least roll your eyes? They may be highly intelligent, but I still can’t get over how everyone is tripping over themselves to save Flipper and Skippy.
But hey, you know what? I’ll buy it. I’ll try to take these dolphins seriously as they use their telepathy and precognitive skills to predict the future. I’ll just pretend that Hyoubu didn’t essentially get killed because of a goddamned dolphin of all things. Right after his fight, there’s a timeskip where Hyoubu is killed because searching through that dead dolphin’s brain showed a prediction of the future where Hyoubu would lead an army of espers. Hyoubu goes from hugging the Captain and finally finding where he belongs to staring down the barrel of a gun.
I warned you, bro! I warned you about the megane glint!
Hyoubu’s heart shatters at that moment. He thought he was working hard to prove his father wrong about esper abilities and do something good for the country. He was finally happy. Then he’s suddenly told that he’s going to a be a heinous villain and is taken out by his mentor. His shocked reaction is priceless! Hyoubu is always so stoic and cocky while leading PANDRA. It’s nice to see him in a totally vulnerable and tormented state.
As traumatizing as it is for him, I probably would have shot him too. If this dolphin is right, then it’d be the best choice. However, I wouldn’t do it in cold blood like the Captain. He has no reservations pulling the trigger and even adding insult to injury by calling Hyoubu a monster. That’s just going too far. Perhaps if he’d been a little kinder before pulling the trigger, Hyoubu wouldn’t have suddenly come back to life and gone on his killing spree. It wouldn’t erase the betrayal, but it would soften the blow since his actions could be rationalized to someone acting for the greater good. For example, if he was crying while muttering “sorry” over and over, then you’d know he was actually fond of Hyoubu.
Why did Hyoubu come back to life, anyways? Was he just so horrified and outraged that he willed himself back to life? Did he use PK to push the bullets out and just used pure adrenaline to cope with his blood loss? I know Hyoubu is exceptionally strong, but he is too surprised to block any of the bullets, so they all make an impact. That has to have done some severe damage, even with his telomere-fixing abilities (which he probably hasn’t used yet since he’s still aging). The only answer so far is “because he is Hyoubu goddamned Kyousuke, now shut up.”
Hyoubu going through a self-fulfilled prophecy by throwing a massive tantrum is his choice in the end, and I don’t know if anyone can ever change that. To me, it’s far too extreme a reaction and he should just suck it up and do something constructive like helping esper orphans without the whole murder thing being a part of it. I know being betrayed and shot like a dog must be absolutely dreadful (and that’s an understatement), but it’s not like that excuses him from engaging in a “kill all normals” plan without being punished. At the very least, now I can understand better why he’s become who he is today. I’m curious if Andy will react to this, or if the scene will continue next week without Hyoubu having told him anything.
Preview: USEI busts into the Catastrophe and they don’t seem to be following Andy’s orders to behave nicely to the innocent passengers. Hyoubu and Kyousuke continue their faceoff while Momo…actually fights???
This week, on “Cute Psychic Animals”…