Second arc here. First arc seemed a bit abbreviated. Didn’t have enough time to get really invested in the characters. Plot was spotty and implied a lot that you had to interpret. No time to mourn our dead. Still enjoyed it and only a couple spots of confusion that cleared up upon 2nd viewing. From the POV of Boogie, there is nothing to mourn. Just another day at work.
Will that be a pattern? Second arc seems to be taking more time.
Enter Imaginator, occupying the form of a pretty middle school girl standing on a ledge. Yup. that’s the new big bad. Boogie wants to know, “Wassup?” She tells Boogiepop that the end of the beginning is the beginning of the end.
Imaginator seems to be able to take over human bodies at will and leave no memory of what transpired behind.
Ok. Next, we meet a nice guy named Jin. His problem is that he “sees” the missing stuff inside us. He’s working as a guidance counselor in school. He can’t fix the problems he sees, just gives advice to relieve the pain a bit. Then he meets Imaginator who offers him the power to change the world and everything goes downhill from there.
One of the dead girl’s friends decides to kill herself to be close to her friend forever. Boogiepop has bad news for her.
Remember how Manticore in the previous arc was giving people a drug that turned them into zombie slaves? Imaginator is doing something similar. A drug that gets you supremely addicted and then destroys your body so effectively there’s no recovery, even if you stop. You will still die.
Remember Nagi, the fire witch? She’s got a little bro, Taniguchi Masaki. (Are they related to Tenchi Masaki? It would explain a lot.) He makes the mistake of “standing out in class” too much (i.e., girls like him). Some of the boys decide to beat the crap out of him in an alley. Lil’ bro is just standing there and letting them. He figures if he defends himself he’ll get in trouble and it is better to be pummeled. This says something really sick about the world he lives in.
Enter Orihata Aya. She explains to the boys that the reason they are beating up
their victim is that they are sexually frustrated, rips her shirt open to show her breasts and offers herself as an alternative way to satisfy their needs. Taniguchi doesn’t like that idea and jumps between them.
Jin, of all people, shows up saving lil’ bro and the girl. They run and he “takes care” of the bad boys. How he does it is not shown.
Orohita is not quite all there. She is hardcore type 2 kuudere, the very flat, fearful kind that thinks any type of assertiveness might get her “hated”. Up to and including “not minding” if a guy “does her” if it keeps her from being “hated”. Thinks nobody could value her as other than a sex toy. Perhaps she is a walking, talking test of male virtue?
Doesn’t the kid know you are not supposed to fall in love with mysterious kuuderes? They are incredibly dangerous. You have no clue of what – if anything – is going on behind those emotionless eyes. She could be a cleverly designed and programmed robot! Or bringing her feelings out will get her killed to produce a Lost Lenore. (That particular trope was important in the previous arc, so why not again?)
Men will always fall in love with the Rei Ayanamis of the world. Something about the bird with the broken wing brings this out. This is especially true when the bird is pretty or a child or a fundamentally good person who drew a bad hand. Then The Smile comes out and the universe is whole again. Hearts flutter, flowers bloom, birds sing and faded pastels become technicolor.
Or at least that is the hope. Something terrible may happen instead.
The greatest smile in the history of animation!
Oh… and not all of Taniguchi’s fans are female. Could there be a male yandere in the making? Or will something even more shocking develop?
A new player has entered the game, the Towa Organization. It appears to be ruthless and neither affiliated with Imaginator nor with Boogiepop. Probably the same organization that Echo escaped from and that created Manticore in the first arc. Damn, that Boogie is good with her wires!
Two episodes into the second arc and I’m really enjoying it!