Durarara is to Baccano as Samurai Champloo is to Cowboy Bebop. They both draw comparisons to their popular predecessors, not exactly in a bad way but rarely in a way that expresses that the later version is superior. The later version fed off the hype that it was related to the earlier classic and yet they both largely lived up to the massive hype they spawned, a relatively rare occurrence. While almost everyone likes both series, most people also confess that they prefer the older series. It’s not exactly living in the shadows of their predecessors. It’s like the younger brother of the kid with the biggest reputation in school. He may still garner a reputation of his own but he will still be constantly compared to his sibling, even though it’s often in praise-worthy terms. (For the record, I actually prefer Champloo to Bebop but prefer Baccano to Durarara).
A bit of a surprise narrator this episode, this time we got Niekawa Shuuji, the reporter. I have to say that I much prefer it when we get one of the proper cast narrating the episode because it always gives us some interesting insight into their warped minds. Simon and Shizuo’s episodes stick out in my mind as being two of the best narrated episodes because of how little they express of their real feelings verbally otherwise. The reporter is just a reporter. He is far from being an brilliantly crazy Narita character and hence doesn’t have a whole lot interesting to say. Not that it was a bad episode because of it, far from it. It’s just that in previous episodes the highlights have often been revealing aspects of a character through their narration.
What made Simon’s narration so great, as I just said, is that he reveals so little otherwise. It was even mentioned in the episode that his ‘Sushi umai-yo!’ funny foreign accent is all a persona he puts forward so nobody perceives him as a threat. Considering the guy is often named in the same as ‘strongest fighter’ and ‘Shizuo’ (albeit, usually with the phrase ‘not as strong as’), he could quite easily be a feared character in Ikebukero. A big black Russian sushi chef that gives off the aura of being dopey but harmless is quite an achievement. I’m not sure how successful he is at this seeing as people still talk about him being one of the strongest fighters, but at least nobody is running away from him on the street when he’s handing out Russian Sushi flyers. It’s still a total mystery as to how he’s going to feature in this final battle of Izaya’s though.
So to become a ‘Slasher’ you have to get stabbed by the real slasher? So the possessed sword Saika is currently in the hands of some long haired girl whose camera crew are terrible at getting the exposure right on her. Wild guess would be that the Slasher girl is the daughter of the reporter. Actually that isn’t that wild a guess at all. The only time we’ve seen her she was lying in bed with a creepy-girl-from-the-Ring-esque hairdo and on her laptop, presumably spamming the Dollars chat as Saika. That would also explain why she started spamming Shizuo’s name on the chat. Her dad was obsessing over Shizuo for his article and that has effected her as well. The question remains as to how she got the sword in the first place. Izaya didn’t sound too happy earlier in this episode at the prospect of having the Slasher running around ‘bukero so I doubt it was him. It makes far more sense for Shinra’s dad, Shingen, to have done it. For one, he had the sword in the first place to take Celty’s head. Although that theory falls apart when you consider the time-frame the Slasher has been around. It only started appearing 6 months ago and Shingen wasn’t even in the country then.
I found the scene in the Dollars Chat room when Celty said she was a fan of the journalist rather amusing. It reminded me of those times I’ll be lurking in random anime forums and suddenly find The Cart Driver mentioned (90% of the time it’s Hetalia related though, and about half of those Hetalia related comments only mention my dislike for Chibitalia). Hey, speaking of lurking random internet forums, remember how I taunted the guy who designed this site into creating a Dollars website of his own? Well that site has grown phenomenally quick to the point that it crashed all his servers and he had to create an entire new website to hold it. I present to you, The Colorless!
I dunno about you guys, but Shizuo running full pelt at you holding a van door in shaky monochrome is the stuff of nightmares. What got me about this whole scene, apart from its total awesomeness of characters coming together, was how the journalist saw everything in black and white. Who else saw the world in this form? Why, no other than Anri when she was getting bullied by those angel girls. This re-enforces the theory that the Slasher there was some form of projected image. The whole Slasher thing is still so unformed that it’s difficult to form any concrete theories on it. Do you really have to get stabbed by the original slasher to become one yourself? There’s just to little evidence and too many ways it could go, even though this episode was entirely Slasher based.
You know, I rarely talk about Shizuo much in these posts compared Izaya, Celty, Shinra etc. That’s not because he’s a dull character. It’s just he’s so simple that there’s not a whole lot to discuss. Watching him bounce up and down on Celty’s bike like an impatient child muttering his war chant was hilarious, especially when you have the usually needy Celty acting like his older sister, trying to calm him down. CeltyXShizuo has always been amusing to watch but never from a romantic point of view. As much as I don’t like the CeltyXShinra relationship, there’s no way Shizuo is going to steal her away in romantic fashion. Actually that’s a rather amusing thought. Shinra and Celty standing at the alter together only for Shizuo to slam open the doors, traffic sign in one hand, crying ‘I OBJECT!’. Now if the women doesn’t fall for Shizuo at that sight then I’m afraid there’s no chance for our favourite violent bartender.