24 CommentsFlowers of Evil / By Shinmaru /

Flowers of Evil 3 – Sniff Sniff

flowers-of-evil-philip-k-dick

Flowers of Evil has by far the juiciest plot twist of the week: Kasuga has betrayed his beloved Baudelaire in favor of Philip K. Dick! What a scumbag!

Apologies for getting to this later than usual. The last few days have not been particularly kind to me. Hopefully this will not become A Thing. That would be nice.

That Nakamura … she’s definitely something, all right. I’m still having trouble getting a proper handle on her. It seems as if she feels a genuine connection with Kasuga; in him, she sees a deviancy that resonates with her. She is an odd person, to say the least. The way she expresses that connection, however, is excruciatingly difficult to watch. It’s basically an extreme example of the “love expressed through abuse” thing that the young’uns love so much. Nakamura gives Kasuga an inordinate amount of attention through the awful things she puts him through. Yet, it’s difficult for me to say she’s doing this precisely because she likes Kasuga or feels some connection with him or whatever.

What she does seems like it’s partially a scientific experiment. Nakamura forcefully strips Kasuga and forces him to wear Saeki’s gym clothes to see how he’ll react. Will he like it? Will he hate it? Does it make him feel anything in particular? And it also seems like she’s playing a sort of power game with Kasuga — she has something she can lord over him, and she can get her way whenever she wants. But then this is mixed with her intense curiosity about Kasuga; the whole situation is just so emotionally confusing, haha.

flowers-of-evil-classroom

I think Nakamura’s power game is definitely contrasted with the more general power game of the classroom. The kids love enforcing this system of tiers through emotional bullying. It doesn’t take long at all for the situation to become more about putting the weirdos in their place rather than finding this girl’s lunch money. Guilt is slung about because the group thinks Nakamura is guilty; when Kasuga calls that shaky line of logic out, he’s told that he should shut his mouth and go read in the corner, because fuck you, nerd! The social stratification of the classroom feels harsh and empty. Anyone who is different is struck down purely for being different. It’s a soulless exercise. Whereas with Nakamura, while I would hesitate to call her behavior “good,” it at least feels as if it could have some emotional core behind it? Fuck, I don’t know.

When I’ve watched Flowers of Evil so far, particularly the parts with Nakamura, I couldn’t help but have Todd Solondz’s Welcome to the Dollhouse on my mind. That’s probably the most accurate movie I’ve seen about the emotional feeling of being in middle school, because everyone surrounding you is a shithead, but you’re also a shithead. When I see Nakamura, I see Dawn Wiener with actual power. She doesn’t give a shit about her peers, and when she sees something she wants, she gets it, no matter how twisted it is. In a way, she’s gamed the middle school experience. She can stare her teachers down. The insults of her classmates bounce off her. She has her own emotional slave. Honestly, that’s probably the most gratifying middle school experience anyone could ask for.

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24 Comments

  1. Posted April 22, 2013 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

    I’m proud to admit that I use “that” scene as a reaction GIF every now and then.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

      Well, clearly you must share!

  2. sandberm
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    I agree that Nakamura is an enigma. I’ve also noticed a visual cue in each episode of her removing her glasses. You just know when she does the glasses pull she’s about to mess with Kasuga. And yes, “that scene”… The look on Kasuga’s face at the end was perfect – was he scared, confused, disappointed? They do such a great job of leaving his inner thoughts ambiguous. Can’t wait for the next episode.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

      Yes, people removing some article of clothing (be it glasses or a hat or whatever) tends to be the signifier for “I’m getting serious and am gonna fuck you up right now.”

  3. gedata
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

    “I wish the gloom inside me would spread and turn everyone in the world into shit-crawling maggots”
    Nakamura should take up creative writing. I wonder how her work would be graded.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

      She probably has piles of notebooks full of poetry.

  4. gedata
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    Also, that stripping scene must’ve been awkward to shoot. Kasuga appears to be missing something “down there”

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

      It seemed to me it was more shot in a way that hid the ol’ naughty bits.

  5. MadU_Scientisto
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    “The social stratification of the classroom feels harsh and empty. Anyone who is different is struck down purely for being different.”

    – Middle-school in a nutshell

    Kasuga is so damn cringe inducing with his hipster attitude, for me partially because it reminds me (somewhat) of myself in that age. “My Little Favorite French Author Baudelaire Can’t Be This Deep.” Kasuga’s two “friends” on the other hand never fail to crack me up; especially Hentai-kun with the (almost) unibrow.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

      I was never quite like that myself, mostly because I didn’t too a ton of reading above my age level until high school. Reading for school always bummed me out, so I was put off by the idea of reading for pleasure for a long time (aside from children’s books and silly books, that is).

  6. Gedata
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    That unibrow guy, anyone notice how hes’s always smiling with his hand on his chin.

    • Pusswookie
      Posted April 22, 2013 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

      Unibrow guy is the real star of the show.

    • Scamp
      Posted April 23, 2013 at 8:33 am | Permalink

      His hand is always on his chin! I think it’s glued there

      • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

        If we ever see white stuff glopping from his hand, we’ll have a not gross idea of what it is.

  7. SENSEISHUN
    Posted April 22, 2013 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

    Apparently all these middle school girls have thighs of a goddess. Enough strength in them to be able to pin a middle school boy down on the floor, remove his clothes, and slap on some booty shorts.

    Frightening.

    • Shengar
      Posted April 23, 2013 at 1:40 am | Permalink

      Some middle school boy are too afraid to do anything especially when their faces are that creepy.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:19 pm | Permalink

      Don’t sleep on the power of many ladies, friend.

  8. Rihan
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 2:14 am | Permalink

    I’m sure Nakamura doesn’t like Kasuga, she just comes across as very sadistic.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

      I am leaning toward that, too, but you never know.

  9. Posted April 23, 2013 at 4:43 am | Permalink

    Baudelaire is the poor, friendzoned childhood friend who has been there for Kasuga all along but will never win his heart despite being the perfect waifu because the childhood friend always loses. All he can do is watch helplessly from his picture frame as Kasuga throws his life away chasing after Dick.

  10. Kagamihime
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 5:11 am | Permalink

    The scariest part of this episode was the lady with the mustache who gave that weird greeting to kasuga when he was running around the town trying to dispose of the gym clothes.

    • foon
      Posted April 24, 2013 at 5:09 am | Permalink

      Seriously…wtf was up with that? It can’t just be a glorious rotoscoping artifact.

    • Posted April 24, 2013 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, that was quite the odd moment! My exact reaction was, “What the … ?!”

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