Mawaru Penguindrum – 22 Review

Episode 22 – The Beautiful Casket

After having seen this episode, one thing is for sure, we are not going to be getting any happy endings filled with sunshine and flowers out of this series.

I have this sinking feeling at the pit of my stomach that the show is not going to “blow” my mind with an epic ending, but would instead end in an acceptable, yet dissapointing manner for the way the series has build itself up since the start.

Review

Do you guys also think that by the end of the series, everyone is going to either end up dead or horribly depressed?

Circle of Death

As usual, what an appropriately named episode this is.

In this episode, we have Himari who is basically asking to be killed in order to save Kanba. Then we have Tabuki who is lying injured in the hospital due to him protecting Yuri from the crazed theatre co-star with big puppy-dog eyes. The end of the episode had Masako sacrificing her life to protect Kanba, and this had happened only after Kanba had sacrificed his to protect her. With the way everything is going around in circles, I can just imagine Ringo obtaining the diary after everyone is either dead or mentally broken, and the show would either end with the diary being useless or Ringo having sacrificed herself to turn back time in order to save everyone. =/

The show has essentially been reduced to Kanba being foolish in his actions, which then in turn results in everyone else around him getting hurt due to their undying need to protect one another and ensure the happiness of others above their own. It is almost like a classic case of a person hurting the ones they are trying to protect through their lack of self-love/appreciation. Moral of the story? Making a sacrifice will only come back and bite you in your ass when it is due to the person’s ability to treasure their own existence.

Full Circle

It is nice to see that this show never leaves anything out – be it a location (like the statue of the 2 people forming a circle) or a side character that had seemed unimportant.

What was a nice surprise it was to see the appearance of Double H. Although their appearance seems to be quite redundant as there’s only 2 episodes left in this series, and I am not sure how their late appearance is meant to impact anything except for them simply being there to say that “hey, we did matter”, it was still nice to see them “in the flesh” as oppose to merely through the media channels.

What I really like about this show is how everything is connected and no character is useless. In the end, even Yuri’s female co-star had played a somewhat vital role in allowing Tabuki and Yuri to get the closure that they needed. It really does seem that this episode might be the end of Tabuki’s and Yuri’s stories in this series. Although I feel pretty let down by the somewhat expected outcome, I did like the fact that the characters had finally grown to understand that all Momoka had provided them with was some love, and that it was time to move on from their past.

Then we have the teddies in this episode. I guess this finally explains what the teddies were in the OP of the series. If these teddies were a representation of terrorism, then what would the white teddy be a representation of? I had always thought that the colour coding of everything in this series was pretty much black = evil, whilst the “white” = good. But since Masako’s character had turned out to be somewhat positive instead of an evil being, whereas Kanba has turned out to be a crazed killer, does this mean that everything is actually the opposite? Whatever the case, all I am curious about at this point in time is what Mario is meant to be and the the significance of his part in the show. I really have to pity Mario since this dying kid has been pretty much forgotten and left in the shadows. He barely knows his own brother and his sister is so trapped in the past, and her love for her older brother, that she ends up sacrificing herself, which then means that she is inadvertently sacrificing his life as well. =/

Circle of Curse

Another thing that I really like about this episode is the way the show viewed everything that is happening as being a “curse”. Be it Sanetoshi, the PinGroup, human’s greediness, or the lack of love that all children suffer from. It is really nice to see how everything is made to connect with one another through the concept an inescapable curse.

The scene with Kanba and Sanetoshi had really given me a bad feeling that everything in this show was going to turn out to be some sick, twisted and distorted reality that Kanba had dreamt up in his mind. But the fact that Himari and Shouma had seen some sort of version of Sanetoshi does make me feel a tad better that that wouldn’t turn out that way. The lack of a follow up on the Sanetoshi situation after last episode’s revelation was also disappointing. I had hoped that Sanetoshi’s purpose in the show would have been revealed along with his actions and his part in this whole Terrorism Take 2. Also, the constant focus on the rabbits is really getting to me as well. When will the show finally reveal everything? There’s only 2 episodes left and I don’t think there is enough time to wrap eveything up with Momoka, Shouma’s past, Kanba, Himari, Ringo, Penguin Princess thing, the Rabbit twins, and Sanetoshi.

At this point in time, I am pretty certain that Momoka’s character is going to remain in the past and won’t be making a reappearance, but we shall see how that turns out.

Composition Circle

(Hey, I am trying to keep a trend here with the use of the word “circle” =P)

It has been awhile since I have had the time to appreciate the composition of the scenes in the series. The recent episodes had left me more focused on the plot instead of the animation, but this episode had given me the time to get back into the admiring the awesome animation. There was an increase in the usage of artistic “metaphorical” scenes to portray an event in this episode and it has been awhile since we have seen this much in one go. Perhaps one may see this as being good, but what I had saw was the fact that the pacing had slowed down whenever they decided to do something creative in this episode.

Sure, those scenes had really helped in building up the atmosphere of the events that had occurred, but at the same time, it had also felt too artistic and tedious at times. There were moments that had left me feeling like the animators had simply wanted to get whatever creativity that is left in their system out onto the screen since this would be the last time in a long while for them to be able to do so.

Others

Kanba’s actions had left me annoyed with the way his character has been acting. On one hand he is treating Himari in such a precious manner, whilst on the other hand he is so cold to Masako yet so willing to sacrifice his life in order to save her. I just wish that he would stop being so obsessed with his past since it is quite obvious that he is going to end up losing everything that had matters to him at the rate he is going (if not already). I can just imagine the psychotic break he is going to go through when he finds out that Masako may have sacrificed her life for him and that Himari had done the same as well.

As for the scene with Himari, that moment had given off a very “sparkly” and “starry” vibe that had felt too cheery for such a scene. I know that Himari’s scenes are usually pretty much filled with stars, but her journey back to the past followed by the starry atmosphere had felt like a clash in the different moods. On one hand we have these desaturated solemn scenes, and on the other hand things are bright and cheery in her mind. If I were to be honest, I would actually say that Himari’s reactions in that scene had came across as being somewhat over-the-top.

Episode Rating: 7.5/10

Overall, the episode was still a solid one and had covered quite a bit of ground amongst the main characters of the show. It looks like the next episode would be showing us more of Shouma, and hopefully, there would be enough time for them to squeeze a little bit of a catch up on Ringo’s character so that she no longer seems more like an ornament instead of something useful. Her character has turned into this excuse to allow the writer of the show to play “catch up” with the Takakura family members.

The pacing in the episode was also a tad erratic with some moments being too quick and some feeling like they were being dragged out. And with the way things are going, I am going to have to buy myself a box of tissues and lable it “Specially for Mawaru Penguindrum’s Finale” when episode 24 finally airs. T^T I can already feel my tear ducts getting a nice workout during that episode.

The best part of the episode was probably the scenes between Masako and Kanba and their connection with one another. I sincerely hope that Kanba would feel some sort of remorse that he had put Masako through danger instead of turning into a bigger ass and hating the world even more (irregardless of whether Masako does end up dead or injured).

-ra

Ra’s Mawaru Question of the Week:

I am just going to copy and paste the question that I had written above:

Do you guys also think that by the end of the series, everyone is going to either end up dead or horribly depressed?

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About Saranaufogus

An Anime fan who can't seem to keep her thoughts to herself. Find me on: Instagram | Twitter

Posted on December 10, 2011, in Anime, Mawaru Penguindrum, Reviews and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. To answer your question, yes lol. I found this episode really depressing, and I don’t see the show turning around from that mood without doing some sort of crazy rainbow farting unicorn intervention. I’d be almost as disappointed to get a happy ending now, the shows really dug itself into the tone, and it works, even if it doesn’t leave me with the same feel good vibe I would get from something like “Natsume Yuujinchou”.

    I was worried last episode about that dream sequence fear you mentioned, but I think after seeing the characters emphasize that its more of a curse than a hallucination I feel better about that at least. I think that’s probably what I noticed the most, how Sanetoshi gave Kanba a curse to bear and then Masako willing to bear it with him. Off topic, but speaking of Kanba, he’s really starting to look like his Takakura father, who sort of looks like Holland from Eureka 7, not relevant, but I think they did subtly change Kanba’s face to match the darker personality he’s taken on.

    This episode wasn’t a strong one compared to the rest of the series, and it actually still managed to raise new questions despite the series being just about over, but I’m not sure how I can expect anything else from the show. I think my biggest question is what exactly happened when Himari ‘died’ again this episode. It seemed like she was going to meet Momoka in that space void thing as she asked to die. The pacing was weird, I think Himari and Masako’s scene’s throwing Kanba a pity party while was cold were the most drawn out. When Masako had her speech about wanting to be called his little sister again, I could feel myself wishing the episode would move beyond the bro and sis – con elements. Himari didn’t sit quite well with me this episode because of that as well. We just found out that Shouma is her “fated one” but she wants to die for Kanba. Did she go to Kanba to stop him even if it meant changing their relationship, or is she doing that to make Shouma happy by trying to bring the three of them together. Its impossible to tell, but hopefully some of that will be resolved.

    My best case scenario prediction for the ending is gonna be Shouma and Ringo living together in that house, maybe with Mario too, while everyone else ends up dead or ephemeral like Sanetoshi.

    Like this

    • “Off topic, but speaking of Kanba, he’s really starting to look like his Takakura father, who sort of looks like Holland from Eureka 7, not relevant, but I think they did subtly change Kanba’s face to match the darker personality he’s taken on. ”

      He really does look like the Takakura father. =/ It also does seem like the animators have recently been placing a bigger focus on Kanba’s facial features. I doubt it would amount to anything much at this stage but it is interesting to note.

      “This episode wasn’t a strong one compared to the rest of the series, and it actually still managed to raise new questions despite the series being just about over, but I’m not sure how I can expect anything else from the show. ”

      True. I really haven’t a clue how they would be able to wrap everything up nicely. I have a bad feeling that we would be left with a bunch of open ended answers.

      “I think my biggest question is what exactly happened when Himari ‘died’ again this episode. It seemed like she was going to meet Momoka in that space void thing as she asked to die.”

      Hmm.. I dont know if I even expect to ever see Momoka again. It would probably be better if she never comes back and remains a part of the past.

      “My best case scenario prediction for the ending is gonna be Shouma and Ringo living together in that house, maybe with Mario too, while everyone else ends up dead or ephemeral like Sanetoshi.”

      Lol, I suddenly feel like the show is going to end with a bunch of stalking ghosts =D

      Like this

  2. You stopped watching at the ending again didn’t you? It showed young!Shoma in a cage and I think it’s quite important (since it made me think that Shoma was the Penguindrum even more, or at least “created” for a purpose in that sick plan of theirs)

    That being said I really loved Masako in that episode and to answer your question I think I wouldn’t be incredibly disappointed if things ended well for everyone.
    I can foresee a good ending for Yuri and Tabuki or at least an ending in which they sacrifice themselves for the children or something.
    I think Kanba is beyond salvation and Himari is supposed to be dead anyway, Shoma will probably be depressed if he manages to stay alive and Ringo, well, I don’t know. I can somehow see her taking up Momoka’s role and sacrificing herself or at least trying to to save everyone.
    And then we see Double H crying on TV about the loss of their dear friend. (Since we cannot forget them after all ^^)

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    • “You stopped watching at the ending again didn’t you? It showed young!Shoma in a cage and I think it’s quite important (since it made me think that Shoma was the Penguindrum even more, or at least “created” for a purpose in that sick plan of theirs)”

      Guilty as charged. I really don’t like watching the previews of the next episode but I should really kick this habit. =(

      I just saw that preview and you are right, Shouma being in a cage is interesting… Hopefully they would actually follow through with it.

      “That being said I really loved Masako in that episode and to answer your question I think I wouldn’t be incredibly disappointed if things ended well for everyone.”

      I would love for everyone to be happy but I think the best case scenerio is going to be some sort of bittersweet ending that will leave me in tears or in a melancholic mood of sorts. T^T

      “And then we see Double H crying on TV about the loss of their dear friend. (Since we cannot forget them after all ^^)”

      Lol, did you also think that their appearance was utterly random? =P

      Like this

      • I don’t really watch the previews either, except when love them (like for Un-Go) or when I want to see the endcard (like for Penguindrum)
        Sometimes I’m happy I do XD

        The thing with Double H appearance and all of their “appearances” in the show is that it always, always make me wonder “How is this relevant?”
        They must have some kind of role and that’s why they suddenly appeared but I have no idea about what it is

        Like this

  3. “Do you guys also think that by the end of the series, everyone is going to either end up dead or horribly depressed?”

    As I have said in the comments of ep 21 review, I want to see Himari die in the end *w*… and maybe Masako in some sort of coma, so that both of Kanba’s sisters would be the ones to take their ‘punishment’ :D

    I also have a feeling that this show is going to have a predictable ending (which I hope not, because I want Ikuhara to troll us with some unpredictable epic endings)
    but it feels like that Himari is going to stop Kanba before she dies..

    Like this

  4. Double H is not needed, they abandoned himari , so they are not a real friend.
    only when himari is dead, they come and visit, they dont even care.
    they, if for example an earthquake to happen, will go and save themselves,
    and leave himari to rot. these characters are not needed, just some ectra JAV slut (sorry, got a bit emotional since they pretty much abandoned himari)

    Masako is pitiful, she chase that bastard kanba around like a craze incest sister.
    and she end up dead for kanba sake, and of course kanba doesnt even care.
    somebody please shoot him already! kanba is beyond salvation.

    ringo is the current holder of that diary, and she has this aura on her,
    that she has no grudge over anything. (somehow diff than her early
    psycho stalker character) somewhat she is a character that
    seems to be build to sacrifice herself to save everyone.

    i would be pissed if somehow Ringo will use the diary to save
    everyone just like how her sister have done. also if that diary
    can turn back time or something, that would be cheesy.

    in the end, the only way to help every character in this anime
    is to turn back time, as if everything never happen.
    if this is what the director have in mind,. then this anime
    would be a big pile of shit, sorry,.

    Like this

  1. Pingback: Notes of Mawaru Penguindrum Episode 22 « Organization Anti-Social Geniuses

  2. Pingback: » Notes of Mawaru Penguindrum Episode 22

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