Psycho-Pass – 21

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Whoa, whoa, hold UP. I just realized this is where hot dogs come from…

Technically, almost all their food is made of oats, right? That’s kinda gross. Anyways…we made it, kids! The penultimate episode is here and we all know what that means when Urobuchi Gen in involved. DEATH AND SUFFERING!!!! Okay, admittedly there’s not a lot of either this week, but this could be the calm before the storm. I recently saw Madoka part 1 in theatres so I’m especially wary of Urobutcher’s brutal side at the moment.

How fitting that Makishima – the big villain of the show aside from Sibyl – would quote the Bible. He’s a real rascal, ain’t he? It’s easy to forget that this bookish intelligence is transferable to battle tactics as well. I for one still find myself surprised that someone with a body like a beanpole can fight so viciously. It’s frightening that he’s not only smart enough to place mirrors for distractions and set up booby traps, but strong enough to withstand Masaoka’s chokehold for long enough to throw an explosive. If he just had brains on his side, he’d be bad enough…but on top of that he’s somehow honed his body enough to fight like a martial arts champion. That combination is particularly unsettling. It makes him highly unpredictable. Fighting an unpredictable opponent is one of the hardest things to do, and I have no idea how Kougami will be able to counter him.

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Getting some real Orihara Izaya vibes here

The only one available to help right now is Akane. Masaoka is dead, Ginoza has a crushed arm and no morale left, and Yayoi is guarding the control room. I don’t think she’ll pull a last minute HELMET SMASH like last time though. With her Dominator set to non-lethal paralyzer, she should be able to capture Makishima and sedate Kougami. However, I’m admittedly a bit suspicious about whether Sibyl could pull a fast one on her and suddenly switch to lethal mode when she points it at Kougami. If Sibyl can lock a gun remotely to paralyzer mode, they can easily unlock it too. It was smart of Akane to yet again bargain with Sibyl for this privilege, but I just don’t know if they’ll keep their word.

As per usual, Akane remains a badass. Yayoi describes it best as a mixture of her taking on the world, yet holding all the weight of it on her shoulders. She’s determined to save Kougami, and it’s still not affecting her criminal coefficient. We already know what an amazing girl Akane is (I gushed about her last week) so I’d rather talk about Ginoza right now. Compared to the it-girl, Ginoza isn’t doing so hot.

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The sad truth is that Ginoza is not a very good detective. He’s bad at making deductions based on the mental states of others, because he’s so wrapped up in his own set way of thinking. He can’t detach himself from this to see how other people think because he’s not used to it, or he’s afraid of “staring at the abyss, and the abyss staring back.” The Sibyl System’s constant rule over the criminal coefficients of others has frightened him so much that he’s afraid to go outside these rigid guidelines he’s set for himself. He must treat Enforcers as hounds and not co-workers. He must obey all orders. He must trust in Sibyl. He must refrain from caring too much about any one thing. He tries so desperately to stay within these guidelines that it’s severely limited his growth as a person. He can’t emote normally at all. He comes off as cold because he’s so terrified that showing his emotions will send his criminal coefficient skyrocketing like his father’s did.

This week, Ginoza breaks down completely. After a lifetime of carefully trying keeping his emotions in check, he snaps. Throughout the series, we see that he actually gets worse and worse at restraining himself as he begins to involuntarily lash out angrily at people more. The more you try and keep things to yourself, the more easy it is for those emotions to bubble over and release themselves in the most violent ways. To be honest, I think Ginoza is a really weak person. He’s neurotic, haunted, desperate, overshadowed…and possibly one of my favourite characters in the show.

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There’s something charming about how pathetic he is. Like a moth to a flame, I love a good tragedy, and Ginoza is like a slow-motion tragedy unfolding before my eyes. He may very well bounce back after this with a normal criminal coefficient, but I don’t see that happening. Ginoza has been teetering around the very fine line between cop and Enforcer for a long time. The fact that his dad is dead and he lost the exact same arm as him makes it easier to see Ginoza as a new Enforcer taking his place. That’s not such a bad thing though. At least he’s alive. In a way, Ginoza may finally be free once he’s an Enforcer and no longer has to fret about maintaining a healthy Hue or criminal coefficient. He can do what he wants now, and still work at the job he loves.

It’s a tricky situation because everyone wants revenge on Makishima now. He killed Yuki, Masaoka, and Kougami’s old partner (indirectly). He’s a cold-hearted anarchist who wants to take down Sibyl without any further thought about how things will pan out after that. He never talks of how the world will be after Sibyl, yet he painstakingly criticizes the Sibyl System’s flaws. Just what is he expecting to happen once he brings it down? He never says anything aside from wanting life to be “normal.” Anyways, since everyone is out for his blood, it’s hard to tell if someone will go trigger-happy first or if Akane can capture him alive. I want Makishima alive and silently creeping around by the end of this, but I doubt that’s a possible route. That being the case, I’d prefer for him to die than get stuck inside the Sibyl System. Picturing Makishima as nothing more than a brain in a computer system is just a waste of good looks and cunning.

My guess is that someone will have to die next week…so…..who’s it gonna be?

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My creeper-senses are tingling…


A neuroscience graduate, black belt, and all-around nerd. You'll either find me in my lab or curled up in my rilakkuma kigurumi watching anime.
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20 Responses to “Psycho-Pass – 21”

  1. Liza says:

    Masaoka! T_T I loved that guy and to see him die…tugged on my heartstrings there. And Ginoza. Seeing him fall apart like that was so sad. Although I don’t know if he will become an Enforcer or not. Since with this trauma, he might come out for the better(maybe…) and have a more clear psycho pass but who knows? This show is pretty unpredictable.

    But final showdown is coming up. I have the feeling that Makishima or Kougami is going to end up dead in the progress… I can picture Akane being the one to make it through to the end but who knows? They might throw ahuge of a curveball at the last second…

    • Overcooled says:

      I really liked Masaoka too. He was a tough guy with a good heart. I think Ginoza will become an Enforcer now but really…this show is unpredictable. No one is safe!

  2. 5oClockTea says:

    The death of the father was seen from episode one, but it is still a hard one to swallow.

    No matter who lives or dies next episode, unless the virus has already been created and unleashed/set on timed release, Sibyl wins.

    Akane and co will be forced to fight and toil for an unjust system, controlled by worse psychopaths and egomaniacs than Shogo, with Akane fully aware of just what kind of government she is working for, but dare not change due to the fear of losing stability and lives.

    Also thinking it over, the killing food supply for a time period plan might not be as damaging to social order as originally thought. If Japan kept a large enough grain store, as any sensible country with the means should, Sibyl can utilize grain store, speed track trade, and even soylent green to avoid mass oat riots. Hue and cc parameters can be relaxed to take into account immigrant population. Full propaganda and pay outs can be made to keep the immigrants more or less content and docile. In the end a changed (maybe for the better) Sibyl will still be holding the infrastructure in place, and Japan won’t go to the dogs like many feared. Sibyl may have to give up a lot of power to give people more autonomy so it won’t be completely overthrown, and everything might be changed for the better without too much bloodshed.

    Too bad we won’t be seeing that even if they do an OVA.

    • Overcooled says:

      I can’t say I saw it from episode one. That’s a bit early, no?

      Makishima’s plan could go wrong in so many ways, and this is one of them. I don’t think they’d be able to turn people into food though…That’s a bit much, even for Sibyl. Anyways, it’s still a faulty plan that wouldn’t necessarily spell out the end for the Sibyl System.

  3. JPNIgor says:

    Urobutcher, you killer of awesome characters… So sad Pops died… He could have kicked that TNT, though. Ginoza could have gotten out of there before it exploding if he wasn’t so desperate…

    But it’s funny to see how Makishima isn’t SO badass. He’s human and seeing how he was cornered there and only was able to get out of that situation using his brain just remembered me of it.

    I can easily see Ginoza dying for someone’s dominator… I don’t know why, but I can.

    • Overcooled says:

      True, kicking might be faster. Hmm, maybe he was afraid he wouldn’t kick it far enough. Whenever I try to kick things away, they just skitter to the side instead of away <_< I don't think Ginoza could escape until his pain was numbed from emotional shock. Somehow that didn't happen when his life was in danger, but when his dad died. Makishima sure is innovative. He just keeps on going, even after being captured once before. Little rascal.

  4. Oroboros says:

    Why Makishima hasn’t argued for an alternative:

    Should be obvious that it’s always easier to criticize and refute and destroy than it is to create, assert, and establish something.

    I’m hoping that Akane actually kills Makishima and ends up as a brain in the Sybil system, forcing Kougami to re-assess his brand of justice.

    • Overcooled says:

      You think someone who is confident enough in his own ideals to actively try and destroy the system wouldn’t be afraid of arguing something a little more tricky. It’s certainly easier to critique then come up with a unique plan.

      I really don’t want Akane to end up as a brain since she’s such an amazing character, but it would have interesting lasting effects on the survivors such as Kougami. At this point, anything can happen!

  5. BlackBriar says:

    Damn it! The Urobutcher has struck again and he took away the guy everyone goes to for advice. Requiescat In Pace, Masaoka, you will be missed. Manly tears were shed in his death scene. He died with honor.

    What made this more emotional was that before all of that, Masaoka told Ginoza how much he cared about him. There was something poetic about that but I can’t find the words to explain it. Unless there’s some miracle that happens to occur, Ginoza might become a latent criminal with a robotic arm like his father. Not to sound cruel but the scene made me think of what he asked Akane a few episodes back: “How do you feel about someone dying because of your incompetence?”. Man, that’s got to sting.

    To be honest, I think Ginoza is a really weak person. He’s neurotic, haunted, desperate, overshadowed…and possibly one of my favourite characters in the show.

    It seems you really like the characters that are reserved and utterly consumed by their despair. As expected of the Lady Sadist.

    Makishima, how can you so evil yet so badass? A villain that has brains and power. That’s a hero’s worst nightmare (Like Bane from The Dark Knight Rises). Placing a mirror to trick Kougami was really sly. Honestly, it’s amazing how one guy can cause an entire department such a headache. No matter where he goes, the place turns into a bloodbath/war zone. If I had to describe him, I’d say he’s Sephiroth meets the Joker. However, I’m really pissed at him for killing Yuki. That was too cruel to watch. It’s only natural that everyone would want him dead. He’s killed people and thrusted the entire city into anarchy.

    I was saving this question for the last episode but I have to ask it now since you put that caption under the picture of Makishima. So, Overcooled, who’s your favorite sadistic antagonist now? Orihara Izaya or Makishima Shougo?

    • Overcooled says:

      Masaoka told Ginoza how much he cared, but in a very muted way. It’s kind of sad to me because he never feels like he can tell his son he loves him, even until the bitter end. He can only show it. Those two have a really sad relationship.

      I think Ginoza will get a robo-arm too like his dad and follow in his footsteps now. We shall see. I love seeing characters consumed by despair! There’s something captivating about it. I need to rewatch Heat Guy J to see if I still feel the same way about Clair…

      Haha, Makishima is quite the villain. It really is amazing that one person could cause that much trouble, huh? All in all, I must say I prefer Orihara Izaya to him though. Izaya does it all for his own sick enjoyment while Makishima has (more or less) a specific cause. I like Izaya’s capriciousness more.

  6. lvlln says:

    Urobuchi’s world building has left a lot to be desired, but I admire his ability to take the styles and tropes of the West action movies he likes so much and incorporate them into an anime. Things like the factory setting, Kogami’s incredible jump off the security bot to scale the wall (looked to be at least 15 feet; only very skilled traceurs could accomplish that consistently), the electrified wire versus baton duel, and the bomb use to force the old man to make a sacrifice for his son, all felt like right out of a summer Hollywood blockbuster. Or maybe an episode of 24. The way he built up the intensity with the stakes in this penultimate episode was almost sublime. A great cliffhanger ending, and I can’t wait to see how it wraps up.

    • Gecko says:

      I agree, Urobuchi’s world building was not too great here. The hyper oats especially, and not to mention, barely anything beyond the police action gets mentioned. He did well with the characters, but he just didn’t do the same for the world.

      • lvlln says:

        Actually, I find the hyper oats to be one of the most believable aspects of the world building in this show. Certainly more plausible than Sybil or the government in general as it’s presented. We’re early on in genetic engineering right now, but we’re already on our way to a single genotype agriculture. Virtually all bananas sold I the US share the same DNA, and Monsanto’s soy bean strain makes up something like 90% of soybeans grown in the US. I find it wholly believable that more consolidation will occur in order to feed the growing populace.

        • Overcooled says:

          Everything being made of oats is believable, but Makishima’s plan that no oats=no Sibyl is a bit farfetched. With how breeding and genetic modification is used today, it’s not surprising that the future could hold genetically identical crops. It’s only a matter of time, really!

          I think Urobuchi actually did a better job with some of his characters than the world-building here. Sybil is a super cool concept in of itself, but he could have explored it a lot more.

    • Highway says:

      I thought from the beginning that this has basically been a US style 70’s-80’s cop movie, and it hasn’t really done anything to change that. Even the talking in the mirror trick is right out of that genre.

  7. Gecko says:

    Ginoza is set to replace his father. Just like how he was trying to avoid Masaoka’s mistakes, he didn’t pick the right way to avoid them. I’m assuming he could survive this to the end, which would be an interesting end if he’s the only one left in the entire thing, which was an original thought I had when I saw his character. But he’s not that great a detective, so, perhaps not. Ginoza has been an interesting character: putting up the strong front and then falling apart bit by bit.
    Makishima seems to be ready for pretty much anything, and has a new wardrobe for this final fight. I didn’t notice it until the fighting began, and then I noticed he’s been set up in white and yellow, countering Kogami’s black and black. (Does he have another color?)
    Well, we’ve got quite the final episode up ahead this week. My bets are on Akane’s joining of Sibyl and Kogami and Makishima’s deaths. Gosh, I can’t wait to see what happens.

    • Overcooled says:

      I hope he survives. He’s been through so much, and I want to see the lasting repercussions seeing his father die will have on him. He’s actually quite a bit more interesting to me than even Kougami.

      I love the new trenchcoat! It looks great when he fights! I guess they can’t do without wearing their favourite colours. Black vs white.

      • Gecko says:

        The black vs white deal also has quite a bit of symbolism- white is usually what is coveted (because of European skin) and black is usually shunned. But here, we are supposed to shun Makishima for everything he does, and he’s coveted for Sibyl. Meanwhile, Kogmai is sort of the hero of the situation, but he isn’t wanted by the system. The colors match the system’s reaction, but aren’t perfect for the how we feel.

  8. Amutofan123 says:

    This episode tore out my heart! Poor Gino, he’s one of my favorite characters and seeing him so broken was really sad.

    Man, I can’t believe the last episode is airing tomorrow. I’m gonna miss Psycho-Pass.

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