37 CommentsDurarara / By Scamp /

Durarara!! episode 24 (finale)

And so we come to the end of what could have been one of anime’s all time classic series. What we got instead was still one of the best things you’ll see all year, but lacked the consistency. It didn’t lack oomph or the special factor, strangely enough. It had the ingredients to be a classic but didn’t quite mix them well enough to stand amongst the greats. However, can one really complain when an A+ becomes an A-? This was still a fantastic series, but let me get onto this episode first.

This episode serves as to a great highlight as to what this series did well and didn’t do well. The final scene with the Yellow Scarves was awfully dull. Dotachin leaping out with his yellow bandanna, suddenly acting like he was important to the plot all along, was pretty badass but his way of solving this plot line was to beat the crap out of the Yellow Scarves? Really now, that’s the best he could come up with? Then there was the three angsty teenagers all apologising to one another for dragging the plot down these last few episodes. And what does Celty do in all this? Stand in a kung-fu position, totally ignoring the fact she can summon a 10 foot sythe and beat them all by herself. I mean, I get why this works. You shove Horada’s way of taking over the Yellow Scarves’ in his face by using the same method against him, but it wasn’t a particularly interesting way to end the arc. The best part from that whole was the guy in the background performing a crazy double-footed kick.

See! When Kadota was giving one of his speeches, my eyes were transfied to the guy in the background repeatedly hitting someone on the ground with an iron bar. Repeating animation movements make me lol.

This picture might be the best to sum up what was wrong with the last arc. Horada was never a real villain. Izaya said it himself that he had found someone distinctly unfabulous to finish up his game with. The last arc crawled to a finish, Izaya trolling away and the three angsty teenagers being unable to do anything. It was a conflict amonst the smaller characters in the series that was really nothing more than Izaya’s plaything. Horada, Mikado, Kida, Kadota, Anri. They’re all minor players in this big game of Ikebukero.

But bring the bit players back into the picture, directly conflicting with one another, and suddenly Durarara looks like the A+ anime it promised us all it would be. This may sound like blasphemy to some, but if there’s one place Durarara tops Baccano, it’s with the strength of personality of the characters. Izaya, Shizuo and Celty in particular, with maybe Simon lagging a bit behind those three. It comes as no surprise that the show was at it’s best when these characters were in scenes together. The main overlying story of Durarara is a struggle for power in Ikebukero amongst these bigwigs. Well, not a struggle for power I suppose. More like conflicts of personality between those. Each of the arcs in Durarara never dealt directly with these conflicts, which explains why the building up of these arcs was always stronger than the ending to each of them.

Izaya is what really makes this series tick though. Without him there would be no conflict. But without those other bigwigs in Ikebukero there would be nobody to stop him. That’s why this last arc stumbled. Nobody opposed Izaya in a scheme he was much more directly involved in than previous arcs so it became repetitive. Anyone who tried to oppose Izaya would inevitably fail, apart from those very bigwigs I mentioned earlier. Is it a coincidence that the only times Izaya was shown to be momentarily perturbed by events were directly caused by Simon or Shizuo? There was one flash of annoyance at the prospect of him losing his beloved humanity to a ‘stupid sword’ though, which shows that the supernatural still has the ability to throw him off guard.

That is why we need a second season (yes, I think you all knew this was coming). The main conflict of Durarara was not solved. The minor conflicts each character had within themselves were solved. Celty’s relationship with Shinra, Mika Harima’s reveal that she was still herself to Seiji, Shizuo coming to terms with his strength, Anri learning to deal with Saika, Mikado understanding what the Dollars meant, Kida finally facing his past Spike Speigal style, but the main plot point of Izaya never came to a head. His fascination with humans, his complex with Shizuo (I heard the squeals around the world when Simon said that line) and what it was he was really searching for were never truly solved. Simon’s reveal at the end that a lot of what Izaya does is a farce to himself finally shows us that there’s more to Izaya then just being a benevolent sociopath.

There’s no way I couldn’t put this piece of fanservice in.

Even with all that jabbering over the rest of this post, this still is the last episode and looking back at the series overall, I really will miss it. Yes it could have been better, but what we got was fantastic either way. The gradual reveal of Shizuo until his grand entrance in episode 3 with his ‘IIIIIIIZZZAAAAAAYYYAAAAAA-KUUUUNNN’. Or how about the shortest-lived hobby in phone-stomping history. Then there was bubbling over how moe Celty was, followed by the outrage that she jumped back into Shinra’s arms. Remember constantly looking at the street signs for the latest reference to other anime? I was totally duped into believing that the head on Mika Harima’s shoulders did belong to Celty, which was often mentioned in quick succession with how fucked up the sexual preferences of the Yagiri family was. The awesomeness of Shingen was short-lived. The barrage of yaoi fanart was not, although was made bareable by the glories of genderswapping. The constant theories thrown around as to what the Slasher actually was. And how about the seemingly endless parade of parodies of the Trust Me ending song.

YouTube Preview Image

For those of you who followed my blogging of the series, I hope you enjoyed the ride as I spent forver blabbing about how fascinating Izaya is, how moe Celty is, how I helped spawn now the biggest Dollars lookalike site and, by the end, how slow-moving the plot had become. Please do leave a comment if you enjoyed reading. For those who only joined for this episode…well, I hope you at least enjoyed reading this post at least. Goodbye Durarara!!

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  1. Vinnie
    Posted June 26, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    I only got into Durarara recently, but I absolutely loved it. I stayed up last night ’til the episode was out… ehehe.

    But I agree with everything you said here. The major conflicts weren’t really solved, although the minor ones were… The ending wasn’t the greatest either. It was the very definition of ‘bittersweet’, in that while it was hastily concluded by Masaomi eloping with Saki, it was really sweet that Izaya invited him to the chat. :’)

    • Scamp
      Posted June 26, 2010 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

      I would have sat in anticipation of the episode coming out, but world cup fever has grabbed me so I had to wait until after watching Chile kick several lumps out of the Spanish players before watching this.

      Thanks for reading :)

  2. smallish
    Posted June 26, 2010 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    I actually found this blog while looking for Durarara!! subs and I’m so glad I did. I’m definitely going to keep following you, and hopefully a new anime will come out that I’ll watch and you’ll review. :)

    I really do love this series too. Ooooh, I hope that they go on for a second season! I don’t know if the creators will want to, since I think there’s not a lot left to adapt (correct me if I’m wrong!), but I think if they sit down and plan things out, they’d do just fine doing an FMA-style departure and making their own story.

    I really enjoyed the finale, too. The beginning was a little… bleh, but after the Yellow Scarves were taken care of, I was sort of reminded of why I loved this anime so much. Everyone was just kind of awesome.

    …and okay, I’m not a Shizaya fan, but even I giggled a little when Simon talked about Izaya’s Shizuo-complex–especially since it was in front of the LOVE statue.

    Anyway, I had a lovely time reading your reviews and look forward to reading more!

    • Scamp
      Posted June 26, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

      Every series brings in new readers~

      The series sold very well, easily enough to warrant a second season, and Brains Base have made second seasons in the past with Natsume Yuujinchou, so there’s definately hope. I don’t think they’ll do an FMA style departure though. I’m not even sure if any studio has departed from the source material with a light novel series the way they do with manga adaptations.

      Apparently that LOVE statue does exist in Ikebukero, which made it an even more inspired move on behalf of the director.

      Glad you enjoyed reading the posts~

  3. Roger
    Posted June 26, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    I missed that crazy kick in the background, Kadota explaining how he was there the whole time and is still smiling while he lets the 15 year old boy with two holes in his forehead overexterts himself and promptly die of bloodloss, then, still smiling, demands the main character takes his attention away from his loss so he can his brilliant scheme, kept my attention. But that’s me.

    But anyway, I have to disappoint you. In a second season, Kida off course won’t appear at all but his screentime is mainly handed down to new characters. Izaya faces much more stiff opposition though. AKA finds himself outplayed and outgunned every other plot. But Mikado and Anri will always carry the main plot, and Simon to date will continue his pacifist streak even more dilligently (though he becomes more important nevertheless). Celty will be more obviously the main character from henceforth though, probably.

    • Scamp
      Posted June 26, 2010 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, Kida fainting at an oppertune moment was awfully silly as well. To be honest though, a lot of that last episode was very silly. The car scene at the end and the facial distortions of Horada very much gave off the impression of happy-go-lucky, especially compared to the Slasher arc. It was as though the creators decided that they wanted to show that this arc meant very little by ending on a silly note. Ah well

      • Roger
        Posted June 26, 2010 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

        Yeah, like I said in a comment in an earlier review, you know this season lacked villains when Horoda had to get pwned by everyone, Kida had to get punch him, he was the one Kadota confronted, Celty chased him down after that, Shizuo owned him for the third time in 10 episodes, then traffic co hauled him off. If we had anyone better he would have gone down with just Kida’s punch. And we still got a bunch of neglected characters.

  4. akani
    Posted June 26, 2010 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

    You have to admit, Izaya getting punched by Simon and Masaomi making fun of him in the chatroom is pretty funny. He seemed a bit more human in this episode as well. It makes me want to know more about him.

    I agree that this series could have ended on a better note. However, Durarara!! is still one of the best series of the years hands down.

    • Scamp
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

      Not human. If anything this episode showed hints that he wasn’t truly human with how similar he was to Saika. It made him seem more…well, I suppose the word is ‘vunerable’.

      Still, definately one of the best of the year. I’d place Arakawa above it (which I doubt many people would agree with) but that would be it.

  5. Posted June 26, 2010 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    It’s been some kind of ride these past six months. I fell off the Arakawa boat halfway back, so I’m looking forward to what you decide to pick up next. Cheers!

    • Scamp
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      Was originally tempted not to pick up anything and save myself for the epic Autumn lineup, but after finishing Durarara and basically finishing Arakawa, the urge to pick something else up is too great. Not sure what I’ll go for though…

      Also, WATCH ARAKAWA!!!

  6. Posted June 26, 2010 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

    I would definitely miss Drrr! and agree that a lot of it could’ve been better but what made me plough on was the awesome characters, specifically Shizuo, Celty, Izaya and the Trio. Hopefully, we’ll get another season to dive deeper into their lives and what makes the city of Ikebukuro tick.

    • Scamp
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      Pah, who wants a perfect series anyway? Life’s more fun when you can point out the flaws!

      But yeah, hoping for a second season myself as well. I just hope people remember how good this show, for the most part, was

  7. Posted June 27, 2010 at 4:23 am | Permalink

    How can Anri slice through giant warehouse shutters but get blocked by Izaya’s little pocket knife? Yeah, DRRR left a lot on the table and its always annoying when a show finishes on a low note. I watched the whole thing over again during the week and still think its a good show, great for about 2/3rd, just didn’t follow all the way through.

    • Scamp
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

      Poor arc yes, but that part at the end with Izaya showed that the series is still strong at its core. Which, and I’m just repeating myself here, I hope people remember if a second season is green-lit

  8. Posted June 27, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    That double kick really was amazing.

    And the final punch! I think I would have been happier seeing Izaya show a little fear or SOMEthing from the encounter with Anri (nope, just another “all according to plan” moment), but I did get a little vicarious thrill out of Simon’s dressing-down.

    You did great blogging this series. Cheers.

    • Posted June 27, 2010 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

      Like a brat could do something to Izaya LOL
      I’m happy seeing her so fucking useless in front of him ^O^~~~

    • Scamp
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

      Anri is not one of the characters capable of phasing him so that didn’t surprise me. There must be a good metaphor for this but I just can’t think of one at the moment…something about only gods being able to tackle other gods.

      Anywho, thanx for the compliment~!:)

  9. Posted June 27, 2010 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    Noooo! It can’t be over! (Well, it’s not. I hear there’s an OVA coming out. Sorta like Baccano! but only one episode. http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2010-06-21/durarara-final-dvd-to-add-dvd-exclusive-episode-25 If you were curious. )

    It was a great series, though I agree with you that it could’ve been better for pretty much the same reasons you listed. Though it didn’t have the same level of “crazy” as Baccano!, its characters are more likable. Probably because there seems to be more depth to them… Or maybe we just had longer to get to know them. Odd how that works.

    Anyway I’m rambling. Goodbye Durarara. It’s been a good run.

    • Roger
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      They’re specials and they’re gonna be two of them.

    • Scamp
      Posted June 27, 2010 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

      That extra episode won’t be until next year though! But yeah, it won’t be anything different to what the Baccano OVA’s did. Actually I take that back. I have a theory with those Baccano OVA’s. Brains Base made them with plans for a second season but it didn’t work out so cut back to three and left it as an OVA. So I’d say this episode will just be a bit of fluff.

      Agree with the likable statement. The Baccano characters were a lot of things but rarely could they be classed as ‘likable’.

      • Roger
        Posted June 27, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

        12.5 will come out this August actually. In all my knowledge of the light novels, I don’t have a ****ing clue what it’ll be about though.

  10. Posted June 27, 2010 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    Great summary and blog post. Can you believe I like Durarara better than Baccano? Probably because I <3 Tokyo and have been to Ikebukuro… this setting is more relevant to modern times.

    Here's another video, amazing stuff really…

  11. luffyluffy
    Posted June 27, 2010 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    Celty is one of the characters who I must cosplay before I die. I’ll miss you Durarara!!

    • Scamp
      Posted June 28, 2010 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

      One of these days I’ll cosplay. Although I’ll have to go to a convention first. Still haven’t done that yet

  12. VK
    Posted June 28, 2010 at 2:52 am | Permalink

    Now for me one of the things I liked better about Baccano was the characters. While Durarara does develop its characters more, something about Baccano’s cast was just more…endearing? I dunno, for the most part I found that its characters had more charisma and were all around more fun to watch. One of the things that dragged this arc down for me was the focus on the three angsty kids, when I would have much rather watched someone like Shingen, or the crazy policeman. That’s another thing about this series that bugs me a bit. It throws us this huge cast of characters and we want to see all of them, but this show only focuses on about a third of them? My math is probably off, but yeah.

    • Scamp
      Posted June 28, 2010 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

      Each to their own I suppose. I agree that the story dragged when it focused on the angsty teens, but I wouldn’t call the Baccano characters endearing. That’s definately a word I’d be more likely to use to describe the Durarara cast, especially Celty. But if we all agreed with one another, the world would be a mighty boring place.

      Anywho, thanks for reading:)

      • Roger
        Posted June 28, 2010 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

        They were only angsty for last few episodes anyway, what’s 4 episode in a 24 episode series?

    • VK
      Posted June 28, 2010 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

      Indeed, “endearing” would be a bit of a stretch. For me they were just more fun to watch and I ended up caring about them more by the end of the series.
      But this is all personal taste, so.
      Forgot to mention this in my first post, but good job blogging this series :)

  13. Samshel
    Posted June 28, 2010 at 3:29 am | Permalink

    I enjoyed most of the series, but I really was looking forward to a better finale, but well in the end it was kind of “…And They Lived Happily Ever After” with prospects of another season.

    On the blog side, I had a good reading all along, keep going with the good posts :)

    P.S. Shizuo was the best character of the series!!!! So epic

    • Scamp
      Posted June 28, 2010 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

      One of the things that stood out about Durarara was that, while it was Happily Ever After, it was a flawed happy ever after. The romances were far from perfect but worked out in their own weird way.

      Glad you had fun reading along~

  14. luffyluffy
    Posted June 28, 2010 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    Also, you guys gotta remember, three more episodes are coming out on the DVD’s!

  15. VK
    Posted June 28, 2010 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

    I guess again this is a “to each his own” thing. While those three are good characters in their own rights, they just weren’t my favorites for whatever reason. I think one of the reasons I minded them less in the first arc was because screentime was just spread out better throughout the cast, at least in my opinion.
    These last twelve episodes were sort of their arc, and if you look at it that way they were angsty about the last third of the way through?
    The show was still fun to watch, but I just preferred the first half =p

  16. Redian
    Posted March 24, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    DRRR!i like this anime……………………………………………………………..and the character is very crazyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

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