KILL LA KILL ep12: your father was a dirtbag ninja, your rival is a dirtbag samurai, your nemesis is a dirtbag lolita, and your friend comes from a dirtbag family
How do I even encompass in words the groundswell of emotion that I was feeling watching this episode? It was equal parts hype and exposition, a battle of ideals and monsters. And even with all that was revealed, the most enticing part is what this episode foretells for the future.
I’m not going to go into too much detail this time about everything that went on. I’m spent and suffering a bit from sensory overload and “hype deprivation” after that explosion of an episode. Seriously, I usually only feel like this after watching a really good, intense movie.
Nui’s admission to murdering Ryuuko’s father predictably sends her into a rage. Her transformation and attack are immediate and ferocious, as she simultaneously tries to murder and interrogate Nui, she’s given some very plain up front answers, and some somewhat cryptic ones. Nui fully admits to the murder of Dr. Matoi, but she also says he committed some taboo to deserve it.
Ryuuko is reckless during her fury though, and we see Nui actually snatch up Senketsu’s Nexus thread. I looks like the battle would already be over, if not for the superb work Dr. Matoi put into making Senketsu. Apparently, the demonic outfit has more than one of those crucial threads. It’s even more amazing that she is again able to simply pick out a crucial thread in the heat of battle like that. The thwarting of her attempt to unravel Senketsu causes Nui to compliment the dead old man on his work, and she then strarts to go into the details of his last fateful day on Earth.
Dr. Matoi and Harime Nui only exchanged banter briefly before starting an intense battle. I have to apologize to Dr. Matoi. I completely underestimated the old guy. I should have known that a man experimenting on Life Fibers would be able to use them to great effect. And he also made good use of the Sword Scissors, too. Too bad the old man was more brains than brawn in this instance though. His technology couldn’t save him from the monster that was Nui. She was able to effortlessly wrangle the valuable weapon from him and deal him a fatal blow. That would have been the end of story, and the complete loss of the Sword Scissors if not for Ryuuko’s appearance in the mansion distracting Nui. In that moment, the old man was able to take one half of the Sword Scissors and slice away Nui’s left eye! It was the only real display of emotion from Nui when she freaked out and angrily hacked him and impaled him against a wall with one half of the Sword Scissors before taking off, just before Ryuuko shows up.
With the story concluded, all those old memories and the new revelations mix together to make the already livid Ryuuko actually explode with anger! Senketsu tries to warn her to calm down, but her hot blood sends him over the edge and they go into some disgusting, monstrous, out of control berserker mode! It’s horrific to watch as Ryuuko is devoured in a shower of blood and they fuse into a monstrosity I haven’t seen since Double from Skullgirls.
Things are no longer manageable on the school grounds, and the sight of berserker Senketsu sends everyone into panic mode. Even Lady Satsuki can no longer stand and watch, and decides to enter the battlefield as well. Meanwhile, Mako and the Four Devas are freaking out over the what they’re seeing. And when Mako hears that Ryuuko will likely die from blood loss, she knows that she can’t just allow such a thing to happen and rushes to get her father’s aid. The third faction attempting to do something is Nudist Beach (or is it Nude Beach). Aikuro realizes that they failed to prevent just this blow up, and Tsumugu expresses disappointment in Ryuuko’s fall and submission to her own parasitic clothing. What follows is even more chaos on a grander scale, as Tsumugu attempts to take Ryuuko down, or at least stall her long enough for Aikuro to hit her with a special bullet designed to take her down. This plan is immediately sidetracked when Nui steps in and attempts to chase Tsumugu down. It takes Lady Satsuki’s appearance to bring any sort of order to the battle, as she Tsumugu is forced to retreat and she tells Nui to back down.
Lady Satsuki and berserker Senketsu clash, in a display that makes me excited for the series official release on blu-ray. It’s clear that Lady Satsuki has every intention of putting Ryuuko and her godrobe down like a pair of rabid dogs with this show of force. And it almost happens too, if not for Mako – beautfiul, beautiful, amazing Mako! She dives in before the finishing blow to talk (but mostly slap) some sense into her best friend. It’s a resounding success, as Ryuuko is able to return to normal. Lady Satsuki then thanks Mako for her help (ay, maybe she’s not so bad afterall), and then turns to Nui. She bars the cute little demigod from stepping foot on Honnouji Academy grounds again, stating that she’ll be the one in charge of Ryuuko from now on. Nui agrees to it, with her fingers crossed of course.
In the after credits scene, we see Ryuuko confronting Lady Satsuki long after the battle. It’s here that we see at least a little of what Lady Satsuki has been up to the whole time. She tells Ryuuko not to worry about persuing Nui, because it was she who sent the Grand Courtier to retrieve Dr. Matoi’s resarch. It’s also she who holds all the answers to the godrobe and Life Fiber related questions. She does thank Ryuuko though, and tells her that she’s been instrumental in improving the Ultima Uniforms as a whole, and especially the ones for the Four Devas. She now plans on using that newfound power to finally subjugate the rest of the schools in Japan, including the Big Three. She kindly asks Ryuuko to just sit back, recover, and watch.
End of episode.
Alright, so much for me not going into too much detail – again! I f*cking fail every time I try to be succinct! Oh well, I worked hard to get to this point. *sips tea* I may as well tell you what I loved about the episode.
It’s most appropriate to start with Mako. Mako is absolutely amazing! She’s a throwback of a character, an issue I covered previously. I think I’m starting to understand more of what Lady Satsuki is getting at with her plans. I assume that until we know her back story, and the back story of the Kiryuuin family as a whole, we won’t fully understand her motivations. But as far as her immediate plans for the school and Ryuuko, I’m starting to believe that she ultimately wants Ryuuko to understand her and join her side, should she be strong enough. We’ve already seen her turn several of her past foes to her side, the Four Devas of course. And despite Ryuuko’s murderous intentions, she seems to like having her around. I’m guessing with these trials and tests, she wants Ryuuko to understand why she despises humanity as a whole so much. And here we see how invaluable she is in the context of the show’s plot. She is able to finally pay Ryuuko back for her confidence and help when she turned traitor a few episodes ago. Back then, it was Mako and her family that turned into monsters with their fame, prestige, privilege and ambition. She is that little piece of magic that “makes the impossible possible”. She is the element in this show that keeps it from devolving into something darker. I could go on and on about this amazing little girl, but if you’ve been reading almost every other post I’ve done on this show, then you know my feelings on her. I just found it appropriate that she get the spotlight this time.
While the Devas have their own personal reasons to latching on to her power, Lady Satsuki doesn’t really have anybody on her level, or who shares her goal totally. Ira just wants to serve. Nonon just is a kiss ass who likes having a powerful friend, Uzu desires nothing more than to test his power, and Houka sees this as a perfect opportunity to gather and lord over information. There has got to be something inside Lady Satsuki that needs Ryuuko.
Speaking of Ryuuko, there isn’t much to speak about regarding her. Less of the story these past two episodes has been about her specifically. It’s more like the show revolves around her, and we see characters react to her. But it’s Nui that has really been the catalyst of everything these past two episodes. She’s been nothing but the most blunt of agitators. And has been near untouchable on a combat level. As the guys from Nudist Beach put it, she’s right along side both Lady Satsuki and Ryuuko. And what’s troubling about that comparison is that there’s no clear sign of a godrobe on her at all. I can’t figure out for the life of me where all her power comes from. I surmised the last episode that it may have something to do with her eye patch, but I was dead wrong about that. She’s an absolute powerhouse! A monster! And yet we’re left with no much in the way of answers about her.
I was impressed with the amount of answers we got in regards to Dr. Matoi’s death. This episode showed the whole thing! Here I was afraid that information would be divulged piecemeal for weeks on end. But no, Studio Trigger doesn’t tease us, they please us! That battle was fast, vicious and entertaining. We get further clues into the relationship Dr. Matoi may have had with the Kiryuiins. And we’ve cleared up the major mystery of who who killed Dr. Matoi. And what we’re left with is a lot of “why” questions. Why was he killed? Why was his research so taboo? Why did Lady Satsuki of all people have him investigated? Why was the doctor researching Life Fibers and also working on ways to kill them? Why was Senketsu created? Why was Senketsu hidden the way he was? And the questions can just continue on and on.
It really does feel like we’ve reached an important milestone with the completion of this episode. And I get the feeling that from here on out, things are just going to get bigger, more violent, more fabulous, more nude and more BETTER!
More better? I really am tired.