Nisemonogatari Episode 4: Bathtime with Shinobu
Araragi tries to get Karen and Tsukihi to tell him about the incident, however they refuse and Tsubasa has to explain to him that while investigating Sengoku’s curse, Karen met up with Kaiki Deishuu and had something done to her. Later on, while in the bath, Shinobu suddenly comes out of Araragi’s shadow again and tells him that she recognizes that Karen has an oddity Oshino once told her about – the Wreathe-Fire Bee. The two end up reconciling, with Araragi realizing that if he has the lifespan of a vampire, Shinobu will be the only one left beside him after hundreds of years.
I know Tsukihi is cute and all, but I think I’ve got a new favourite character now. You couldn’t really tell back in Bakemonogatari, since…well, she completely didn’t talk, but talkative Shinobu is FABULOUS MAX xD Somewhat of a cross between loli and a slightly more arrogant Holo from Spice and Wolf, I bet a lot of people got converted into Shinobu fans after this ep, including me.
(Except the die-hard Senjougahara ones of course).
I was a bit surprised at how casual Araragi was around her, apart from the initial shock at her being naked. I know they’re kinda part of each other, since Araragi’s vampirism was because of Shinobu in the first place, but washing the hair of a naked loli then having her step into your bath provoked absolutely no response from him. They both made it sound like the hate between them was more an act than anything else, since they seemed far too close than if they really hated each other. Also, the donut request and Araragi stroking her head at the end just proved that they’re pretty close despite everything. It was a very Madoka-esque moment when the ep ended, since if Araragi really does live for hundreds of years, only Shinobu will be left as everyone he knows will eventually die.
The gag where someone walks into an awkward situation never gets old, and it was hilarious when Tsukihi opened the door and saw Araragi in the bath with an unknown loli next to him. There was that WTF derp moment as with all those incidents, then Tsukihi went into her Gasai Yuno yandere mode, and PULLED OUT A KNIFE LMAO. If Shinobu hadn’t gone back into his shadow, I doubt Araragi would have been able to talk his way out of that one, even if he revealed his hidden siscon tendencies.
I would have been fine with just Shinobu fanservice for an ep, but Studio SHAFT really went out of their way and even put in plot! Fully explained by Shinobu of course, since even Tsubasa was hiding stuff from Araragi. By the way, I nearly mistook Tsubasa for Senjougahara with that new look, it suits her much better than the glasses moe girl type did. Anyway. It’s quite clever how Shinobu has in essence replaced Oshino as Araragi’s new “guide”, since though he has a better understanding of them, he still doesn’t know about many oddities.
Kaiki Deishuu’s ability to control and curse people with oddities seems pretty hax, though I guess each bad guy needs to have an extremely hax power. My guess last week that he was a vampire is probably wrong, since Shinobu would have sensed it if he was. Ghoul or some kind of demon seems more appropriate right now. In terms of the Wreathe-Fire Bee, I wonder how Karen managed to even hide anything with that kind of fever? At least her OP sequence all makes sense now, with that fire/flame motif. Ah shit, why do I have this feeling that Araragi’s gonna do something reckless and life-threatening to save his imouto?
TL;DR – Need moar Shinobu.