Monogatari Series: Second Season Episode 7: Mayoi Jiangshi
“It’s not something to brace yourself over. It’s merely time travel.”
First things first. As Episode 6 was a recap of Nekomonogatari (Kuro), I haven’t covered it. You can still read my impressions of the original airing here though. I’m actually not sure why SHAFT made this sort of production decision – recaps often hint that there are deadline or schedule issues, but they aren’t often given a regular episode number. There are many arcs to cover, so surely the last thing you’d want to do is use up an episode on a recap, especially so soon within the scheduled two-cours. Anyway, this next arc is Kabukimonogatari, and is titled Mayoi Jiangshi. Ironically, this first episode had no Hachikuji in it at all…but she’s supposed to be dead, so I guess I can forgive that :D This arc also promises lots of Shinobu, which I’m very much looking forward to.
You can’t get more random than starting an arc off by talking about traffic lights. Indeed, it’s contradictory that a red light (signalling danger) encourages safety, but I don’t want to be told that by a strange girl with scary eyes going by the name of Oshino Ougi. Yeah, Oshino. That rang some alarm bells. She calls him Araragi-senpai, and they seem to be on amicable enough terms…though like many of Araragi’s acquaintances, I have my doubts as to how human she is. Oh, and she verbally abuses him. Just like Senjougahara, but creepier!
Yotsugi turning up was…weird, but I still prefer her to Yozuru. The adults associated with Oshino (Kaiki, Gaen) all seem to talk in riddles, and it sometimes gets very difficult trying to decipher their words. Also, she’s not making any posed looks any more, it seems. And with this maturity comes a bit more of her backstory – while she used to be human, she became a tsukumogami of a corpse after Yozuru “reincarnated” her (with some evidently shady method). That means she’s died and come back to life, while Hachikuji’s died and stayed dead. Araragi’s kinda left that loop with immortality, or a long lifespan of sorts, seeing as how he’s not a full vampire right now. You open a whole new can of worms by asking a ghost whether she’s happy…evidently there’s something other than her house that’s keeping Hachikuji around, though I think it’s more than just that. It’s definitely not normal for something left behind by a ghost to remain.
Shinobu still manages to be the cutest thing ever, without even trying. It’s a tough fight between her and Ilya for loli of the season. For someone who’s never failed at anything since birth, she really managed to screw this one up didn’t she? I mean, it worked and all, and they’re both alive. That’s a good thing. It’s just that…they’re eleven years in the past. And they can’t get back. Because they used the leftover energy from the Nadeko Snake ritual, the only way to return using the same method is to find residual energy somewhere, which won’t be fun :D It’s also partly Araragi’s fault for not finishing his homework, and for choosing to jump in that portal without really thinking – but I have a feeling Shinobu was very curious about the extent of her own powers, and decided to investigate. After all, if something like that was a bother for her, she’d have asked for some donuts first. Well…at least they make it back safe and sound, right? Shinobu does, at least. Araragi’s clothes go through some tough times…