Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Mayoiga: The Lost Village Episode #12 Review (Finale)

They're being rejected by themselves, not anyone else, and that's what terrifies them the most.

What They Say:
A shady bus tour of young men and women are headed to an elusive village called Nanakimura. A destination where people can partake in a utopian existence, free of the world's obstacles... or so goes the rumor. Heading deep into the mountains, the bus is carrying 30 different individuals, each harboring their own expectations and troubled hearts. What they had arrived to was an uninhabited village with lingering, faint scents of life. It was falling apart. Just what is the secret of Nanakimura?

The Review:
(Please note that the content portion of the review may contain spoilers)
With a super-sized version of Hayato's grandmother looming on the horizon, our time with Mayoiga is finally coming to a close. That being said, there are still several villagers out there with some loose ends that need to be straightened out. But, before that, the more important thing is dealing with mega-grandma, who Hayato has apparently learned to control. Riding on the back of his Nanaki, Hayato is able to grab hold of Mitsumune and Masaki as he spills his true feelings (Which we already know from several episodes ago) about how he has no purpose if he has no one to protect. Once again, Mitsumune speaks out against this, seeing as doing so is the only way to make him feel like he's changed. As soon as the argument starts shifting in Mitsumune's favor, Koharun shows up and sparks the debate of, "What if he's lying to you?" which sends Hayato into panic as he falls off the Nanaki.

As the Nanaki chases after Hayato, Mitsumune grabs him and starts running away accompanied by Masaki and leaving Koharun on the sidelines. But wait, what's this? Mitsumune dropped his walkie-talkie. (Gasp). Once Kamisama starts coming in on the handy-dandy portable communication device, Koharun picks it up and -- Surprise! Kamisama is actually her father and the main reason she ventured to Nanakimura in the first place. After a quick heart to heart with her dad, Koharun throws the walkie-talkie away and is left to question whether or not she wants to continue deviating from her father's outlook on this whole quagmire.

Shortly after the scene brings us back to Mitsumune and friends, Hayato decides that it is time for him to face his Nanaki. As mega-grandma soars through the tunnel at the speed of a bullet train, Hayato stands strong and is...eaten by her. Don't worry, though, it's the good kind of being eaten -- the kind that forced both him and his grandmother to disappear as they are sent back to the real world. Following the vanishing of Hayato, Reiji finally decides to show his face in front of Masaki. Being one of the only Nanakis everyone can actually see, Reiji breaks the news to Masaki that he is not real. As it turns out, Masaki created an imaginary friend when she was younger to cope with her loneliness -- that friend being Reiji. It is then revealed (After a long-winded, emotional discussion) that she always knew he wasn't real, but she wanted to try being with him anyway. This is the reason she came to Nanakimura in the first place. Of course, she winds up accepting this and instead decides to use Mitsumune as her friend in times of need from now on. Good job, Mitsumune, you finally got her.

Meanwhile, things at the camp are a little...different. So far, we've only seen people who wish to deal with their fears and move on in an attempt to get back to the real world. But, after being told by Reiji what Nanakimura actually is, some of the villagers decide that they would be better off not dealing with their problems and staying in the fake reality they've been tossed into. As the group separates into those who can deal with their problems and those who can't, the underlying theme of the series becomes apparent -- and it's essentially what we've all been expecting.

The main point that Mayoiga is trying to convey is that different people have different ways of coping with things. Almost everyone out there has something from their past that they'd rather forget. And, just as it happened in the show, not everyone is necessarily able to progress past that. There are going to be people in life that bottle up their problems and become consumed by them. At the same time, though, there are going to be people strong enough to take these regrets and turn them into something that betters them as a person. It's the cycle of life. Nanakimura is an alternate universe that enables people to see their fears firsthand and decide whether or not they can deal with them. The fact that some villagers were left behind and couldn't deal with said fears is enough to make Mayoiga a good, realistic anime with an important message. The last episode does feel a little rushed (As I assumed it would be) but I don't think that really takes away from what we can learn from the series as a whole.

In Summary:
Mayoiga: The Lost Village can be pretty messy at times but it has a lot of heart. Even with all the questionably bad parts of the show, I was never particularly uninterested. With a character roster of over thirty unique villagers (With a good portion of them having detailed backstories), it's easy to latch onto one that you can really connect with. Whether it be the girl with the imaginary friend, the abused child, or the kid who was bullied in school, there's something in here for almost everyone who grew up imperfectly. The sense of mystery in this series is equal parts confusing, suspenseful, and all around hilarious at times. But even though Mayoiga may not have been necessarily attempting to have some of its monsters appear a little...self-parodic, the end result winds up being one I'm not disappointed with. Save this one for a rainy day when you have no idea what else to put on. If you can get past the clumsiness of some of the plot (And even the episode quality at some parts), you might just have an unexpectedly good time.

Episode Grade: B-
Series Grade: B-

Streamed By: Crunchyroll

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