“…you come into my house on the day my daughter is to be married…”
Honestly, this is really just The Godfather the Anime. I haven’t even seen the movie and even I can see all the blatant homages and borrowed plot points. I swear if there is a severed horse’s head in anyone’s bed, I’ll scream.
But anyway, this series really doesn’t waste any time. We continue to establish the world and the people in it, and what our main character’s plans are. Avilio is acting his craftiest in order to maneuver his way into the Vanetti family and become a part of them. And he will steal, extort, lie, cheat, and even kill, if it gets him into the position he wishes to be.
Biding your time
We get a little more about what’s going on between the did mafia families that have been introduced so far, and it looks like the Vanettis who staged a coup that ended up costing the 3/4ths of the Lagusa family their lives, haven’t really being very good steward of that which they spilled blood for. Still at odds with their rival family, the Orcos, the Vanetti family has hit upon some hard times. So hard in fact, that they are basically have to draw on unwanted alliances with bigger fish families, such as the Galassias, who own Chicago (that’s interesting, I don’t remember them. 😛 )
Oldest son Nero finds himself at odds with the rest of his family in wanting to rebuild and strengthen the autonomy of their family, but he’s facing a losing battle and everyone knows it. His father, now Don Vincente, has what I can only guess is a mortal disease and never leaves his home, and so is basically in “que sera sera” mode right now. Nero’s sister and brother think the only choice they have is to join with the Galassias, with sister Fio marrying into the family.
Not a very happy wedding is it?
It’s a lot of gangster politics, not much of which do I find interesting. Yet, I like seeing the drama that goes around with Nero and how he seems to be alone in his struggle to reestablish the family and to bring it back to his former glory. His boys seem to have his back and it almost seems as if he’s running the whole family business on his own, but not getting any help from his family is beginning to wear him down.
I don’t know why but Nero doesn’t yet feel like the main character that he’s supposed to be yet. It still feels like Angelo’s show. With Nero, I just don’t think he’s on screen long enough for us to really get a good feel for him. We know only the barest minimum about him, we see what he wants to accomplish and a little of his personality, but really that’s it.
With Angelo, we see how he’s going about this plan to get vengeance on his family’s killers. We see how even though he has sworn himself to this path, he still hesitates about killing any innocents to get there. Even when he is facing off against Fango, who is a homicidal maniac, he still hesitates. We learn that he’s never killed a man before, and when Vanno tells him that he’s had a “late start”, you get hit just a little harder with what kind of world this is and how dark it can be.
But while Angelo can’t bring himself to kill Fango’s lover, Avilio doesn’t hesitate when it comes to his family’s killers, finally staining his hands with the blood of the first of his three victims: Vanno. Yes, as we the audience probably already knew, the one responsible for that long ago night of terror in April 7 years ago, was Vincente Vanetti, the current don, his eldest son, Nero, and Nero’s best friend, Vanno Clemente. With Vanno’s character, I’m not exactly sure if they went the right direction by killing him off so quickly.
By making Vanno such a likable and amusing character in the last episode and a half, I can see that they were trying to build a sort of grey area with his character, where on one hand, we know he’s guilty of unspeakable things, and yet, at the same time, you can see that normally, he’s a pretty nice guy who is loyal to his friends and has a code to which he conducts himself. The problem is, I don’t think we’ve really gotten a chance to know Vanno well enough to really have any kind of reaction to his death, at least not in the sympathy department.
Instead our attention is on Avilio the entire time and honestly, I don’t know whether to cheer or look on in regret when he fires that killing shot. Mostly shock and surprise at the turn of events were all I could garner, as while I was expecting it, again it fell like it was way too soon in the story. But that just makes me wonder, where exactly is this story going? I at first thought this was simply going to be a straightforward mob revenge story with nods and references to other famous gangster tales, again like the Godfather and Scarface. And yet, with one transgressor already dead, and only two left and it only being episode two?! There has to be more to this series than we thought.
And we get our two clues as to what that might be when we see one, when Fango’s murderous thug, Serpente, who was shot by Vanno thrice, decides to change his name to Lazarus and his corpse suddenly disappears. I can’t see Vanno replacing his bullets with blanks, especially after wanting vengeance so badly for young Tronco. So what’s going on here? Was Serpente wearing a bulletproof vest? Is he actually dead and someone moved the corpse? Whatever happened, not only does it put Angelo in a tight spot being caught in lie by Nero, but also it means that perhaps Serpente heard and saw some things that he shouldn’t have. And if he is actually dead, then that means there’s a third party at work here that is privy to Avilio’s plans. And in either case, that means there are definitely grounds for blackmail and/or manipulation to come into play.
“My name is Angelo Lagusa. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”
But then again, we already know that there is third party that for some reason wants the three killers dead just as much as Avilio does. So, the questions is–who is using our main character as their own personal assassin? Who exactly sent that letter and what do they stand to gain. I’m about 98% sure that the person responsible isn’t simply “some old friend of his father”. And the mystery going forward will be to see if we can figure out–who is it?
Before I close this out, I guess I must mention the new OP we got. It’s one that’s been highly anticipated, and I have to say that it was…good. It was fine, but not really as amazing as it was being touted to be. I like the visuals though, and I’m interested in how all the visuals will play it out in the actual show. I welcome any twists or sudden changes that the plot and writers will put out there, since so far this is pretty by the books. But like Corteo, I’m watching all this in both interest and slight horror at how far Angelo is really going to go.