Thursday, March 9, 2017

Rewrite Episode #21 Anime Review

The dead will never come back to life.

What They Say:
Kazamatsuri, a modern, well-developed city renowned for its burgeoning greenery and rich Japanese culture, is home to Kotarou Tennouji, a high schooler least privy to the place's shared values. Content to fill his pockets with frivolity, the proud and nosy boy whiles away his time pestering the self-proclaimed delinquent Haruhiko and indulging in his amorous feelings toward the oddball Kotori.

Equipped with the superhuman ability to permanently rewrite any part of his body to multiply his strength or speed, Kotarou is naturally drawn to the supernatural. One special meeting with the lone member and president of the Occult Research Club, the "Witch" Akane Senri, leads to Kotarou reviving the Occult Club by recruiting Kotori and three other members: the clumsy transfer student Chihaya, the strict class representative Lucia, and the unassuming Shizuru. As Kotarou unveils hidden secrets of each member of the Occult Club through their shared adventures, he will inevitably encounter a fate that only he might be able to rewrite.

The Review:
(Please note that the content portion of the review may contain spoilers)
Following the masterpiece that was last week's episode, Rewrite needs to follow up with something big if it's going to maintain it's stature as a fully recovered series. That being said, having Kotarou return to his home of Kazamatsuri seems like exactly what's needed to slow down the currently accelerated pace of the show. As Kotarou returns home, he meets with Esaka, who goes on to brief him of the current standstill between Guardian and Gaia within the city. After the briefing, Kotarou goes off (In inner-monologue form) about the Key and how it traverses the city on its own legs and has the capability to end the world at the drop of hat. However, something within Kotarou pulls him back toward the same tree he's been meeting Kagari at since the start of the series. And while he doesn't quite remember her per se, he feels a sort of familiarity to her, connecting his consciousness and memories with that of the other timelines.

This encounter with Kagari ends in the idea that Kotarou is essentially going to help her save the world. The only means of doing that, however, is figuring out a way to either unite Guardian and Gaia or put an end to both of them. Already being wrapped up in Guardian's operations, Kotarou decides to join up with Gaia under the guise of carrying out a solo operation hidden from the other members of Guardian. And, after one thing leads to another, Kotarou begins to understand the thought process of the cultist group, eventually gaining his own power to summon monsters. It is then revealed that there are two different hidden sects of Gaia -- one lead by Sakura Kashima and one lead by a man named Shuuichirou Suzaki. These two sects, while both having hidden agendas of their own, remain invisible to the lower members of Gaia, with members in the middle sectors and up silently aligning with one or the other. Kotarou, after meeting with Suzaki, is tasked with uncovering more information about those who pledge allegiance to Sakura, marking him as a hidden infiltrator in a group that he is already infiltrating.

The final act of this episode winds up being the most powerful, however (Which seems to be the pattern for Rewrite as of late). While wandering through the forest in search of Kagari, Kotarou winds up walking straight into an alternate realm. And, you guessed it, it's Kotori's druidic world. Apparently, Kotori has been watching over Kagari since Kotarou left years ago. The surprising part of this, which is even mentioned by Kotarou, is that the two of them had probably crossed paths multiple times in the past without even realizing it. Kotori goes on to tell the story of how her parents were killed in a car accident shortly after she and Kotarou said goodbye to one another. Kotori, being the only one left alive, was able to survive after encountering Kagari and gaining druidic powers. However, having no one left alive to associate with, Kotori uses these powers to bring her parents back to life in the form of monsters. After Kotarou realizes this, a huge argument about mortality and morality breaks out between the two, which ultimately culminates in Kotori collapsing into Kotarou's chest and pounding her fists against him while bawling her eyes out.

This heartbreaking scene, backed by Rewrite's astonishing OST, becomes the second consecutive tear-jerker ending in a row, further enforcing the idea that Rewrite has finally recovered from its unsightly start. 

In Summary:
Considering the colossal impact that last week's episode had on this series, Rewrite's newest episode needed to follow up in an equally remarkable way. And, thanks to several fated reunions and a heartbreaking ending to the episode, we get exactly that. With Kotarou becoming a member of Gaia, it is going to be interesting in the coming weeks to see how he balances the ideals of two opposing groups. Rewrite is back, ladies and gentleman, and this time it's here to stay.

Grade: A

Streamed By: Crunchyroll

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