Not exactly the ideal place to wake up in.
|…Dolls are creepy, aren’t they. I honestly don’t remember Rozen Maiden being this creepy, and everything that happened here happened in the manga as well. Oh well, the darkness is making this interesting.|
So Jun has a fairly good reason for not going to school when he was younger. If Jun had been female, maybe the class might have made fun of the fact that he made dolls clothing, but it certainly wouldn’t have been as bad as it was since Jun was male. Society has a weird aversion to guys having anything to do with women’s clothing. Maybe with not professional designers (guys working in clothing shops seems to commonplace enough, provided that it’s not a lingerie shop), and his sister didn’t think anything of it, but obviously in a room full of immature middle school students, there are going to be issues. It was probably tough having society think that what you like doing as a hobby is strange. He knew exactly how his classmates would act if they found out too, since he purposely lied to them about it too, but he kept doing it and drew that design because he liked doing it. Maybe this was part of why unwound Jun started skipping school/work to work on Shinku too. He’s skilled at making things and he liked doing it enough (provided that nobody else knew), so maybe this was him reclaiming some of that.
The flashback that happened this episode wasn’t present at this point in the manga, (since it had already been covered in the first season with the wound Jun), but I think it was a good choice to include this here. So yeah, you probably couldn’t tell from the first episode, but this is what Jun has been dealing with and why he stays home all day. He’s pretty traumatized. Of course, it doesn’t help that the teacher who put up Jun’s design like that also makes house visits (to the middle school Jun) and tells him that everyone wants him back in the class too. Jun’s had to deal with a lot of stress in his life due to his hobby, and that’s why Jun feels even more crushed by society when he comes out of that slump, only to find that the rest of society sucks too.
…Which brings us back to the divide between the wound and unwound Jun. The wound Jun has had is life changed by the Rozen Maiden (not that you can tell from the anime, where it just looks like he was compliant and willing to help magical dolls that appeared on his doorstep from the beginning), so he’s just a tad bit more optimistic than unwound Jun. …Plus he hasn’t had his life crushed by society even after he stops being a hikkikomori, but that’s a different story. Anyways, you can definitely tell that there’s a difference in personality. Where the unwound Jun thinks that putting effort into anything is a waste of effort because it never results anything, the wound Jun even says that he’s capable of anything. And in the end, that’s what let’s the unwound Jun be able to recreate Shinku in a hopeless situation. So really, he helps himself in a weird dimension-breaking way. There’s more of this in the future, but the wound Jun really helps his unwound self out.
It just wouldn’t feel right any other way
Shinku is back! …And the episode ends right after that, so there’s not a lot to say about that. I’m kind of wondering if Jun only followed the picture in the book or what to recreate her clothing (or maybe the other Jun gave him instructions), but he got it spot on. I wouldn’t doubt that Jun could do it just from looking at the book picture, since he’s pretty skilled at clothing (due to his past and all). Anyways, despite the unwound Jun being so uncaring about life in general, it’s the Rozen Maiden dolls that get him moving again. They seem kind of like a negative thing in Jun’s life at the moment, since making Shinku has influenced Jun to skip work and school, but they aren’t necessarily a bad influence. I guess they’re more like a force of nature or something. They’re not purposefully looking to harm people (well, minus Kirakishou, but this anime hasn’t gotten to what she does with human mediums yet), but they have their own goals and ambitions that they absolutely want accomplished. …Though some dolls are worse than others in this respect. Anyways, the episode ends off with a complete Shinku and Jun still stuck in the N-Feild.
So after shoving 7 books into a single episode, Rozen Maiden seems to be taking things one chapter at a time now. This is working pretty well for atmosphere, since the episodes have been pretty creepy and the slow pacing helps that. On the other hand though, there’s no way they’re going to get past the unwound Jun’s arc here. The wound Jun becomes the main protagonist in chapter 30 something and we’re currently sitting at the beginning of chapter 3. Unless they skim over things again, there’s no way we’re seeing all of the stuff that happens after that. However, I think it would be perfectly fine if they wrap up the unwound Jun’s part here and end the season with that. They’ll still have to condense things a bit to finish all of this up, but I’d say that’s the perfect place to end this season. They could always make another season later for what goes on with the wound Jun after this.
…You know that cut in the middle of the episodes where Miyuki Sawashiro narrates the story of some girl on a boat? Yeah, I have no idea what that’s supposed to relate to. Maybe it’s some grand metaphor story symbolizing Jun’s relation to the Rozen Maiden or something, but as it stands, I have no idea what they’re including it for. If it was ever part of the manga, I’ve definitely forgotten about it. If it has no meaning, maybe it’s supposed to lend to atmosphere or something. Speaking of atmosphere, I’m really liking the camera angles that they’re choosing for some of the scenes here. Also, some of the filters they put on the animation (like that scene with Shinku sitting with her hair down) lend to the atmosphere as well. The quality is waaaay better than I expected and it’s the little things that are impressing me. …If Rozen Maiden (and actually, Hakkenden is looking really nice as well) keeps this up though, I won’t be able to make fun of DEEN anymore… Anyways, things are still going slowly this episode, but things should pick up now that Shinku is back.
Or at least, they should get more interesting since the dolls are coming back. I don’t know about things going faster.