Aoharu x Kikanjuu 06-08

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The rain tends to bring out the feminine in any girl. 

May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor…

spring15-irenesSo the games began and end  in this small arc, and it was a lot more dangerous than and disturbing than I think we, or our heroine realized. I was thinking that perhaps one was being a bit melodramatic to say that they were “tormented” and “tortured” into giving up a sport they loved, but after seeing what Hoshishiro and it’s leader are capable of, I can see that they were being dead serious.

I had thought the TGC would be the final conflict for this story, and it certainly seemed that way at first, but now that it’s over, where do we go from here?

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More dangerous than you realize.

This ultimate Airsoft competition from the very beginning was certainly intimidating, especially for a first-timer like Hotaru, and while her teammates mean well by leaving her alone to get used to the bloodlust in the air, they unknowingly have left little Orange Riding Hood in the hands of a Big Bad Wolf in sheep’s clothing. But more on him later…

We meet all of team Hoshishiro this time, and we learn more about them while they are in the field than we ever did while they were in the doctor’s office.  Both Ichi and Fujimoto are destructive predators on the field. One is a determined and crazy sycophant with a sniper rifle, while the other is a murderous masochist with a minigun that has enough power to destroy whole trees. (I always knew that under the right circumstances BB pellets could do damage, but since when did this sport get so lethal?)

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Team White Star

Yes, while Ichi and Fujimon are dangerous opponents and feared members of the 4-time consecutive champion team that is Hoshishiro, they are nothing without their leader. And now I want to get to what basically this entire arc  has really been about. The silent whirlwind horror that is Nagamasa Midori.

It’s really not until this arc that we really get an idea of who and what Midori is, and why Yuuki has so much hatred for him. He puts up such a good facade in front of those that don’t know the true him well, that even after being told that he and his team were the one who tormented their old female team member, Hotaru still can’t believe it. She even begins to doubt the word of her two friends, simply because this guy is just that darn good. But she’s in for a world of pain, hurt and disappointment thanks to her naivete.

A Petrifying Fear…

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It is clear that from the moment that Midori greets Matsuoka that there is something horribly wrong with this man. The moment that Matsuoka even sees his face, his entire body seems to shut down. All of his swagger and confidence is gone, and left behind is only the trembling and crushed shell of a frightened child. He can barely speak, or even look the other man in the eyes, he can’t talk to him, and yet he can’t disobey him either. With a single word, Midori has complete control over Matsuoka, turning him into his playtoy for his own amusement. I’ve seen dominant\submissive characters before in anime, but nothing to this degree. Nothing to the point where one of them is so destroyed by the others domination and manipulation that they can barely function.

We learn later that Midori and Mattsun actually used to be childhood friends, which can explain how well one knows the other, and why Midori can have such control. But then you would ask, why Matsuoka didn’t notice is cold-hearted nature back then? Well, it’s not a matter of the blond being that oblivious, but more that Midori is just that good.  If it wasn’t evident by now, Midori is quite the sadist. And by episode 8, it becomes evident that he’s not just a sadist, but he’s also a complete psychopath.  

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I can’t wait to hear this backstory.

While he can maintain his charming, intelligent demeanor, pretend to have emotions and morals, enough that he could probably fool most who come across him. He excels at his profession, as a pediatrician no less, and has what seems to be a normal social life, and yet he lacks empathy or a conscience. He doesn’t care if anyone gets hurt by his actions, in fact, he gets a rush from it.

He’s also extremely cunning and plots out several plans far in advance. He’s also extremely skilled at using the two pawns on his team to the greatest effect and knowing how to manipulate all other pieces on the board to dance by his tune. Honestly, if this guy didn’t have this tournament to have “fun” in, I honestly think this series would have gotten a lot darker and we would have serial killer on our hands.

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Don’t ever turn your back on this guy, you’ll probably end up with a knife sticking out of it. 

Hotaru realizes how far out of her league her opponents are, but not before it costs her dearly. It all really started when she didn’t speak up when Mattsun brought up that cockamamie plan. I understand why she was afraid to at first, but after all that talk about teamwork, she should have brought up how the leader was going against his own rules right then and there. But she trusted her teammates to know what to do and she wanted to support them as best as she could. She didn’t realize the even they had let their hatred of Midori blind them and cause them to also be naive and arrogant. Midori is an expert at getting into people’s heads, and he shows that no better than at the finale fight of this battle.

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Sadistic psychopathy

Having satisfied his obsession with Masamune by brutally torturing him into defeat, and then easily taking down Yuuki, who honestly with a knife like that, was extremely close to committing murder on that game field, Midori plays his most devastating card on the newbie. Shocked and enraged by what has happened to her teammates, Hotaru flies into a bloodlust, with a thirst for justice. I was honestly afraid with how this series has been playing up the shounen cliches, that they would have Hotaru win the tournament simply through power of will and protagonist power up. Seeing Hotaru go all out on Midori was satisfying, but I knew the moment that I saw his own creepy grin that something was going go very wrong. And sure enough, unlike Toy Gun-Gun, Hoshishiro employs a very seamless sense of teamwork, and Midori and Ichi work together to take down the frenzied Hotaru.

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Bloodlust.

Midori had of course hypothesized at Hotaru’s true sex, and her reaction when he mentions her secret to her face confirms it. And it’s not just that, but he also calls her out on her own lies, shattering her own convictions by showing her what a hypocrite she is by lying to her own friends. Being faced with this truth, as well as the devastation of losing to such evil, as well as the loss and humiliation of defeat, breaks Tachibana’s fiery spirit.

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Shattering spirits…

When they were setting up the competition, I had thought it strange that they would have the main characters face off against their archenemies in only the first round in what is considered the ultimate competition that determines who is the best. And so to have them win that competition I thought would be weird as it would leave the remaining episodes with really nowhere to go. Honestly, I had never even considered that they would lose, and not just lose, but be destroyed both physically and mentally.

I guess the reason I didn’t think about it was that since the only place that would make sense for the heroes to beat their enemies would be at this ultimate competition, and since the contest only takes place annually, I didn’t even imagine that they would have time to wait for another year to come around again considering the episodes remaining. My mind went to every option from the competition getting called off because of the approaching rain, to them winning by some kind of shounen cliched miracle. I never even thought about the possibility of them getting beaten.

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Crushing defeat…

And beaten they were. They went up against the reigning champions who were at their freshest point, with a bad plan and no teamwork. They gravely underestimated their opponents and it cost them dearly.

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Now what will happen next, well I don’t know. Hotaru will have to tell the truth to her teammates, but even before that, she will have to pick up all of the pieces after all that has happen. She has gone through the fire and come out scarred, and now its time to heal. I don’t know if we will get to another TGC unless they decide to do a long time skip towards the end and our main characters will have learned their lesson by then. But until then, they will have time to lick their wounds, learn from their mistakes, and come together as an even stronger team, and hopefully be able to take down the now five-time consecutive champions, next time.

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About

A Chicagoan biochemist, teacher, and an aspiring virologist, with a love for science only rivaled by my love for movies, animation, and anime. Both a lover of action/adventure and romance, I'm a girl who walks the entire spectrum. Mecha, Sci-Fi, Psychological Thriller, Romantic Period Piece, if it's has a good story, I'm there.
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10 Responses to “Aoharu x Kikanjuu 06-08”

  1. zztop says:

    I shudder to think how deadly the evil doctor team would be if Dr. Hannibal Lecter was part of their team…

  2. Highway says:

    I skipped pretty much the entirety of episode 8. I don’t need or want to see some sadistic asshole being a sadistic asshole. The show is low enough on appeal to me that it’s a close-run thing already if I watch it or not. And it’s not like I missed anything unexpected or surprising, judging from your post.

    • IreneSharda says:

      I find the minds of psychopaths interesting. I love those FBI behavioral analysis procedural shows for just that reason. So, for that reason, episode 8 was probably my favorite of the series so far. I really like how Midori can get into people’s heads, and control others, and how Hotaru, who is used to facing the “evil” of high school bullies, was in over her head when trying to face this guy.

      I want to see how she is when she has to face him again.

      • BlackBriar says:

        I find the minds of psychopaths interesting.

        Criminal Minds and Law and Order have corrupted you!! 😛 There is no hope of redemption!!

    • BlackBriar says:

      I skipped pretty much the entirety of episode 8. I don’t need or want to see some sadistic asshole being a sadistic asshole.

      Aww, you’re no fun… It gives you a character you’d love to hate.

  3. BlackBriar says:

    I didn’t think it possible but Midori is far more sadistic than expected. Gagging and shooting a pinned down Matsuoka was brutal to watch. More so with the muffled screaming and look of despair in his eyes. And the guy is a doctor. Good grief, I wouldn’t want to have to pay a visit to his clinic. I’d shudder at the methods.

    It all really started when she didn’t speak up when Mattsun brought up that cockamamie plan. I understand why she was afraid to at first, but after all that talk about teamwork, she should have brought up how the leader was going against his own rules right then and there.

    A risk she was reluctant to take. The last time Hotaru went against Matsuoka’s methods, she found herself proven wrong and I guess she didn’t want that happening a second time. Her type doesn’t enjoy making mistakes.

    Already figured Midori knew Hotaru’s secret. Yukimura saw her exiting the ladies’ room so it was strike with still the possibility of getting overlooked but Midori had a first-hand confirmation by personal touch. Though I am face palming at myself for not considering he’d hold the revelation back and use it as leverage to psychologically destabilize her. And he picked the opportune time because if she was left in her bloodlust state, she’d have given him a hard time.

    Plus, Toy Gun Gun (Seriously, this is such a stupid name) losing against them sits well since it would’ve ridiculously unrealistic if a newbie player single handedly bested the four-time reigning tournament team. There’s a limit even for beginner’s luck.

    • IreneSharda says:

      I didn’t think it possible but Midori is far more sadistic than expected. Gagging and shooting a pinned down Matsuoka was brutal to watch. More so with the muffled screaming and look of despair in his eyes. And the guy is a doctor. Good grief, I wouldn’t want to have to pay a visit to his clinic. I’d shudder at the methods.

      Well, as a doctor I think you’d be okay, and since he’s a pediatrician, so you probably wouldn’t see him anyway. But also, as a psychopath, he’s probably very good at his job, though you probably don’t want him to find interest in you. o_o

      And yeah, he’s pretty brutal. I’m really interested in their backstory and how they became friends, and then how Midori basically destroyed him later and why.

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