When in doubt, seek the wisdom of hipsters.
|Long before even watching the episode, I knew a little bit about Hyper Oats and was really wondering how this was going to be even marginally relevant to Psycho-Pass. In an anime about human brains being extracted to judge all of humanity in a giant computer system, you don’t expect anyone to even breathe a word about farms. So I spent the entire episode waiting to see how this would tie into oats, which may not have been the best way to enjoy the episode.|
You have to admit that a field of wheat is a big change from what we’re used to seeing in Psycho-Pass. Considering that anything outside of Sibyl has scarcely been mentioned until now, it feels like it was pulled out of thin air. Suddenly: OATS! Not exactly the location for a finale that you’d expect, now, is it? Don’t get me wrong – it’s a fairly decent plan that could indirectly destroy Sibyl. However it is very…indirect. Would immigration and skyrocketing Psycho-Pass numbers cause the system to fall out of use, or for them to simply imprison more civilians and get even stricter? This isn’t a little scheme where each domino knocks down the next. A plan of this scale isn’t simply a cause-and-effect sort of thing. Anything could happen.
It’s queer how tiny and unimportant the city looks from here
What’s even more odd is that Kougami is absolutely certain that Makishima will do this. It’s a plausible plan, but yet again it feels like a bit of a stretch of Kougami’s detective abilities. At this point, I’m just going to run with it. This isn’t a giant plothole to ruin the story, and Kougami has always had almost psychic-level deduction skills. I’m willing to hit the override button and just go with the flow. Besides, going from the bustling city to the abandoned crops may provide an interesting contrast. All the most important things are entrusted to machines – both our minds through Sibyl and our food supply through drones. However, it makes it sound like there are absolutely no humans around the crops to protect them despite the fact that it’s so essential to our survival.
The message I get from this is that technological advances will be the death of us. Genetically modified foods are handy because you can make crops resistant to diseases, pesticides, frost and all manner of things. However, once you find the ideal genome for a certain plant, you can either clone them or breed them so much that they all essentially have the same DNA. That means if one plant manages to catch some sort of disease it just so happens to not be resistant to, then the entire crop is vulnerable and can die. That’s why variable populations are so important – because if everyone if different then hopefully at least 2 individuals can withstand any one thing that wipes out the rest of the population.
Or, Makishima could just slip by the drones and set fire to all the crops. WHO KNOWS?!
While I’m still hooked on the story and looking forward to the finale, this episode in particular was a bit of a chore to sit through. This is the second week we’ve been forced to watch a montage of talking heads. It’s not like they’re covering the most riveting subjects either. It’s mostly characters just plainly telling us what they’re going to do next. We don’t have to infer a lot, because each character kindly tells us exactly what they’re thinking and feeling. It takes a while for some of them to get to the point with all this literary quoting too.
Another reason I wasn’t so keen on all the chatter was that Kougami’s explanation of Makishima rubbed me the wrong way. Kougami described him like we, the viewers, should suddenly feel sorry for him. I don’t understand why at this point they’d try and make Makishima seem like a misguided outcast who is secretly just lonely. It’s as if they tried to say “he brutally killed a bunch of people for his own amusement but it’s okay! He was just lonely!” He hardly comes off as a victim. If he was lonely in the past, then he’s since gotten over that and just become a determined psychopath. Don’t try to convince me that someone like that is a good guy.
CRAWWWLLLINNNGGG IN MYYY SKIINNNNN
Other than Hyper Oats and the very last scene, the rest of the talking scenes aren’t very exciting. I’m pretty sure a lot of us could see Ginoza’s downward spiral coming a mile away, so it wasn’t shocking at all to see his Hue become cloudy. It was so obvious that it could have simply been inferred by showing Ginoza acting more nervous and snapping more. They didn’t need to give us a scene with him talking to a therapist. It’s quite clear that he is desperate to save Kougami and be a noble detective despite how impossible a task it is for him. He’s doing it for himself and his team, because he really does care about them and how they perceive him.
Things start to pick up where Akane is concerned. I loved seeing her expression change to one of steely determination after Kougami left. It’s funny how the one conversation I really liked was cut so short. I was zoning out for most of Akane’s mini therapy session with Shion until she finally questioned what Sibyl was measuring. If it’s not measuring her heart, what is it measuring? She keeps it all together even after being devastated by losing Kougami and being ordered to shoot him on sight, while being strictly ordered not to kill Makishima. Akane herself doesn’t get why her Hue is clear when she feels so depressed.
It seems like Akane is asymptomatic, but I still strongly believe that’s not the case. I think the Hue represents resilience. Those with cloudy hues will get upset and let whatever made them upset change who they are. They cannot bounce back after a nasty situation. Akane has a clear hue simply because she has the strength to recover from bad situations. She may cry, get mad, and feel absolutely worthless….but at the end of the day, she would never let her feelings change her. Much like Saki in Shinsekai Yori, Akane has strength.
In the end, Akane picks up a Dominator and is (supposedly) told the secret about Sibyl. However, the Chief wants a new pawn, so will she really tell her the truth? I don’t see the point of telling Akane the truth at this point, so I admit that I’m a little baffled. They won’t really tell her that Sibyl is secretly a bunch of brains and wires now…will they?
After watching Sasami-san all I can think of is Akane (Same seiyuu as Kagami) going fuuunyaaa~