Kagari is cute!
It still feels so surreal watching Moon animated. I’ve fallen behind for a couple weeks now, but I heard Terra was starting today and so I’ve got to get through these last two episodes of Moon first. There were two important moments that were adapted this episode. First, there was Kotarou rewriting his mind and comprehension abilities to try to reach a level of existence where he can understand the blueprint and actually help Kagari out with her research. It was always one of the more surreal scenes in an already surreal route. I do think it was handled better in the VN, as Kotarou’s detailed narration is probably the most straightforward way of describing his ascension to the very limits of human existence. There’s only so much that images (moving or otherwise) can do to help with that, so bizarre shapes and colours are about as good as it gets. This adaptation did try its best, though, with the disembodied Kotarou floating higher and higher until he hit that invisible ‘wall’ and realised he couldn’t actually ‘get back down’ after having gone that far. I also thought that little red ball representing the presence of the concept of love was kind of cute. Very profound.
The second important scene was the dance. I’ve always wondered whether it’s right to say that Kotarou is in love with Kagari during Moon and Terra. It’s true that he tends to rewrite himself for the people who are important to him, and in this world his relationship with Kagari is something he cares about a hell of a lot. But still, Moon and Terra are supposed to be her routes, in which she’s the ‘main girl’, and one of the most common criticisms of both is that there isn’t enough romantic interaction between Kotarou and Kagari, at least not enough compared to the five character routes. Part of that is because Kagari’s death is a certainty regardless of how the story ends, and also because she’s technically a phenomenon who can’t really talk (but, as Kotarou correctly says, a very cute phenomenon whose smile is worth protecting). I think that’s a more valid complaint for Terra (which is more Kotarou’s route than anything) rather than Moon, though. Watching the rooftop dance scene reminds me that Key did make the best of what they could. Kagari blushing and smiling was super cute. It’s one of the iconic scenes of Moon, and I’m really happy with how it turned out. A little short, maybe, and Kotarou’s monologues were cut out as they danced to a vocalised version of Daisy, but there’s only so much you can ask for with one-cour. The Kagari route in Rewrite+ and the anime was presumably meant to address the lack of romantic interaction, as it’s a little cruel to make Kotori the cover girl and give Kagari hardly any route of her own on top of that. Moon is technically about Moon Kagari too. Don’t you feel sorry for Earth Kagari?
I remember it was quite a shock to learn that each branch on the blueprint was an alternate timeline. It makes sense, and it’s completely in line with how Key has this habit of trying to create some internal consistency within its visual novels (another example being Little Busters) by incorporating alternate timelines into them, so that when you start each new route you’re not technically rebooting the game but rather entering a different world line within the in-game universe. But by now, it’s probably not a surprise to anyone who’s still watching this, as there’s a very low chance (although not as low as what Kagari-chan says the chance of life appearing is) that any anime-only viewers are still around. Not much more to say on this, I’ve gone into it quite a lot during my visual novel route reviews.
As for Kashima Sakura trying to destroy everything, I think they gave it away too easily. Kotarou would have revealed it at any rate by the end, but having the familiar speak with her voice near the start of the episode made it a little too obvious. Although given what I literally just said about no anime-only viewers being left, I doubt it makes much of a difference. It being a bunch of familiars attacking Kotarou all but reveals the perpetrator is Gaia, anyway. Just the final battle left to go now!