Karneval ep6: a life wasted is a life thrown away
I gotta say, if I’m gonna die I hope I get to go in a haze of sparkles. It just appears to be so much less painful than the usual die with a gaping hole in your body kind of way. Or the slow, cold death of bleeding out. And it’s gotta be a hell of a lot better than drowning or being burned alive. Though I’m not sure it matters so much to the people left behind. This is a weird way to start, I know. But episode six of Karneval is a dour, yet strong one.
Oh Yotaka, you never did have much of a chance, did you? Hell, I don’t think the word “fair” could be used to describe the life of his family in anyway. And here he at the beginning of this episode just fading away. Sure, he’s literally a throwaway character, someone we literally just met. And he didn’t even leave much of an impression. Hell, he won’t leave one now either. When you die in a sparkly way, you don’t even get a burial, let alone a funeral. So you have to wonder what the point of this whole tragedy was…
The being we will learn is named Maega, decides to flee Yotaka’s killer, Hirato. I just love Hirato’s demeanor, it’s not sadistic, but it’s certainly a bit cruel. He plays with Maega before capturing him, knowing the monster never really has a chance. And I like his special attack which involves him calling forth a harem of cute women to subdue their target. Tsukitachi shows up once he’s done, as if on cue. The banter between these two isn’t the best, but it’s enough.
The more important, and slower scenes were the ones of everyone else left behind. Tsubame, Gareki, Nai and Yogi dealing with the death of someone. Personally, I don’t care much for the attempts to humanize Nai. I’d much rather just hate him for being ignorant, and dumb, and way too cute of a character. But this show won’t let me do that so I have to move on.
Tsubame in her grief seems more than ready to die, especially by the hands of someone in Circus. So when Tsukitachi decides to take her with him back to Circus, she’s quite complient. When Gareki goes to console her and get her to stay in town, she’s hammers him verbally. It’s not so much how she says it, it’s delivered calmly, but the words still a sharp. She talks about how she’s alone and how he even abandoned her. Before leaving though, she does decide to visit her sick grandfather in the nearby hospital the next day. While saying her goodbyes, she overhears the nurses talking about some young man who had been visiting and paying the old man’s medical bills. Tsubame goes outside to inquire who it was, and finds out it was Gareki. In not so much of a twist to any viewer paying attention, Gareki has been thieving in an attempt to ease the burden on his adoptive family. He’s stayed away from them and kept them in the dark so as not to implicate them in any of his crimes. Tsubame tells her Circus chaperone that she’s dedicated the remaining time she has, and her body, towards the study of the Varuga cells that infect her. I suppose this is her way of not only making use of her pitiful life, but of paying back those that have helped and protected her. It was a nice, somewhat powerful moment. Tsukitachi’s smile was a bit creepy though. I’m guessing that’s just the way he looks.
Two notes before I go though. One, is it me or does it seem that Tsukitachi has a thing for Hirato? I know this is josei, and not yaoi but I’m sensing an undertone here. And two, I hate Gareki’s damn shirt! Every moment he wears a coat or a jacket, I feel it’s a moment I’m spared from that weird looking crap!
In conclusion, this wasn’t a bad episode. I understand the need for the characters to grieve, but i thought much of this was a bit slow. Much of this felt very much like a transition. That said, Tsubame had some really nice moments here, and I hope she grows into a useful character that we can end up caring about for more than her tragic story. Now my hopes go towards making Gareki and Nai more than background characters, because they’ve been grossly overshadowed by most of the cast for awhile now in my opinion. I don’t care if they learn magic power like what the Circus elite have, but they have to contribute at some point. Or are we destined to have these two characters play the princess throughout this series?