SPOILER! Bet you wish you hadn’t visited the website before watching the episode now, eh?
Psych. Not really. I’ll admit I was taken in by this, as goofy and overplayed such a scene is. I guess it worked because we’re willing to accept anything from Future Diary at this stage. Yuki gets stabbed in the neck before the final episode? Sure, why not. If we can suddenly bring back old characters who died several episodes ago and have them start flying around having Dragonball Z fights with a character who was only previously used for comic relief, then I’m willing to accept pretty much anything this show throws at me.
That fight scene was ridiculously well animated though. It’s not the first time Future Diary tossed out an episode with oddly expressive animation, but this episode especially so. Try do a play-by-play recap of the fight between Murmur and Minine and you’ll see what I mean. It wasn’t speed lines or blurred movement. Every single one of their kicks and punches and laser beams were shown in full detail. I couldn’t follow what was going on in real time, but that was sort of the point. It was meant to be a mind-blowingly crazy fight scene between two godly powers, showing how far beyond simple knife stabs this battle had become. Where on earth have asread been dredging up the money for this anyway? The anime sold very poorly, especially if you put it next to their other anime Shuffle. I somehow doubt we’ll be getting Future Diary ~Memories~ anytime soon.
Even asides from the animation, the episode was fantastic. I loved the scene were Yuno lays out plainly why the two of them fell for each other. Yuno simply needed anyone to latch onto and Yuki happened to be that person. Meanwhile Yuki simply needed someone to protect him, and Yuno just so happened to be the person there. It’s like an alternate version of the Suspension Bridge Effect. The person on the other end just happened to be in the right place at the right time. But I love that they can do that, and are willing to do that. Devolve the central relationship that drives everything in this show to two simple sentences.
It also did something I never thought this show could do: Humanise Yuno. They’ve made her sympathetic. That’s what the revelation with her past did, showing how she became this monster she is today. But humanising and making her sympathetic are different things. While you can feel sympathetic for what led a person to become the person they are today, that does not change that what they are now is a complete unfeeling monster, running off a set of logic known only to themselves. This episode finally revealed the logic, and in doing so they made her decisions feel more human. She understands that her only way of spending more time with Yuki is to keep replaying these events in history over and over again. The recognises that her love is based on something fairly arbitrary and pathetic, but she’s a slave to those emotions. There’s a pain in her voice and her expression in this episode that brought that all across.
The alternate world Yuno created for Yuki was pretty darn creepy too. Watch as the girl you loved strips for you. Here’s your parents alive and back together. Oh also you get the coat you also wanted. Reminded me of that weird scene from Neon Genesis Evangelion where they go into that alternate world where it turns into a goofy romcom. Is this the ideal world you want? That said, as weird as this ending has gotten, this episode restored my faith somewhat that it has its head screwed on and knows what it’s doing with this (well, as screwed on as Future Diary’s head has ever been), which is more than I can say for that Evangelion ending. Then again, we still have another episode left, and there’s bound to be another even more bizarre twist left in store. Cue Yuki sitting on a chair in the middle of an ocean with all the characters from the show around him applauding.