Psycho-Pass Episode 20: Where Justice Lies
“Tsunemori Akane, do you wish for a world without the Sibyl System?”
Akane is taken to the underground core of the Sibyl System once accidentally found by Kagari; instead of silencing her the Sibyl System explains the truth about their society much to her horror, posing a request for her collaboration in getting the CID to capture Makishima Shougo. She agrees to do so under the condition that they guarantee Shinya’s life – while Shinya is already a few steps ahead of the MWPSB, having figured out Makishima’s plan and moving in for the kill.
Things ended up going just as Shinya had predicted with the professor last week – indeed, the finale of the show will consist of Makishima committing bio-terrorism and destroying Japan’s single food source, along with much dark angst and pain as a result somewhere down the line. Makishima did manage to find an expert in the hyper-oats field in the end, and it was a happy coincidence for him that the guy was literally the pioneer for agricultural autonomy – you can’t get much better than that. It’s nicely cautious of him to have implemented an Uka no Mitama defence virus to kill off all the pests, which would ensure a good, plentiful harvest of hyper-oats. Makishima’s going to mess around with that and make the virus kill the oats instead of the pests, ruining the entire wheat field. And the control system for this virus happens to be in an abandoned lab that has security pre-dating the cymatic scan. See, this is the problem – it’s the constant arrogance of society that brings them down every time, as well as people’s misguided assumption that Sibyl is an invincible, perfect system. I mean, hyper-oats maintains the entire country’s food source, and it’s being protected with numeric and biometric passwords? Really? If that building had implemented a cymatic scan linking back to Sibyl, Makishima wouldn’t have been able to get close to it.
“We can entrust management of the system to those who deviate from the system. That is the most logical conclusion.”
There were a variety of delicious despair faces made by Akane as she discovered first hand the truth behind the Sibyl System and the society they live in – and wasn’t killed instantly because Sibyl itself brought her here. As Kagari never really got to converse with Sibyl before getting blown apart by Kasei, it’s interesting to see what the collective minds themselves have to say about society. It’s true that there will be people that deviate from the norm, and it’s also right of Akane to say that it’s not perfect – but Sibyl’s solution of permitting and coexisting with these types of people (the criminally asymptomatic) is pretty grim in itself. It must be horrifying to learn that something like this is governing the society you live in – and it’s these people running society and passing judgment on others, even though some of them committed worse crimes than Makishima. But then, it’s the will of these criminals that sets the laws of ethics and society’s moral code – because they’re setting it, are they criminals at all? I don’t agree that contributing to Sibyl atones for some of the crimes they’re committed while they were still fully human – in fact, it dehumanizes them somewhat if their crimes to society were even worse than Makishima, and they found it acceptable at the time. That applies even more now that they’re just a sentient mass of brains. And this sort of warped humanity defines their dystopia perfectly – human beings solve their problems by ceasing to be human.
I did think that Sibyl would ask Akane to join their ranks for a minute, but then again, her status of sharing the Sibyl System’s purpose makes her invaluable, as it makes it unlikely she’ll reveal its secrets. No matter how immoral or disgusting it might be, she can’t deny its necessity towards society – Japan would collapse if Sibyl were to disappear right now. In that sense, as an MWPSB Inspector she’s placing the stability of society above everything else. She can’t deny that despite its monstrous methods, its achieved a certain level of social order that ordinary policing can’t do. Therefore in order not to disrupt this, she won’t reveal any of Sibyl’s secrets, making her a useful citizen in their eyes. That kind of capacity probably has something to do with the score you get before being assigned to a job – how much power you have in society is determined upon your opinions on Sibyl’s necessity. Akane, who got a high score is free to work in any of the central ministries as it’s unlikely she’ll want to break the status quo, while those like Yuki, with a rank C have a greater chance of turning against Sibyl. They say that whatever job you get makes you happiest – but rather, someone’s way of living is tailored to bring Sibyl and society’s future stability the most happiness. You lose your free will, and there are repressed, pent-up desires you never get to display – desires that Makishima tried to develop with his other partners.
Anyway, it seems that the MWPSB had no leads at all until Kougami gave details to them on a silver platter – he’s definitely one step ahead, and as we saw in the ED he’s already at the hyper-oats farm. Sibyl’s supposed agreement to guarantee Shinya’s life does seem pretty arbitrary – though in their defence, the reason they’re after Shinya is due to the risk of Makishima getting killed by him. Akane continues to surprise me with how cool she is these days – she’s proved her status real Inspector now, and is deducing things while taking control of the situation when she needs to do so. Gino even saw a bit of Shinya in Akane there, who even stood up to the Sibyl System and managed to extract a promise from it. Whether it’ll manage to keep it is a different thing entirely, especially as Shinya has chased Makishima down to the very exact farm he’s on, bent on revenge and not bound by Sibyl’s form of justice.