Mikado Ryugamine doesn't want to live a boring and ordinary life, even though he seems to be just the sort of guy who is destined to inhabit one.. at least, it seemed that way until he helped some strange nameless girl escape from Selty's clutches at the end of Durarara!!'s previous episode.
As the show's tenth instalment opens, we get to see Mikado's rescue of the girl with Selty's head sewn to her body (really, I'm not sure what to call her for the benefit of this 'blog) from his own perspective, and of course come that evening once said girl is asleep he calls upon Masaomi Kida for help. Equally predictably, Kida is absolutely no help whatsoever, and very nearly gives away Mikado's secret at school the next day were it not for Mikado's seemingly dull personality. Still, all of this is forgotten soon enough as Masaomi takes Mikado to meet a member of the Dollars named Takiguchi who goes to their school (thanks to a rare moment of astute thinking from Kida), thus introducing another little thread to the tangled web of the series.
It's after school where life becomes more complicated still for Mikado, as he's first confronted by the girl who had her mobile phone stamped on by Izaya earlier in the series and her boyfriend, before then finding himself followed home by both Izaya and Selty. Eventually plucking up the courage to ask what Selty wants with him (and more importantly the girl currently in his charge), Mikado learns everything about Selty and her missing head, and so looks set to do his bit to help her before things become more complicated still, with the episode closing to what can only be described as a "new-look" Mikado looking ready and raring to go in his role as one decidedly interesting person.
For all of its moments of important plot progression, this particular episode of Durarara!! was first and foremost incredibly funny throughout, from pretty much everything Masaomi and Izaya do through to Mikado's nightmarish daydream of a "yandere" stalker Anri. Throw in some completely random reference to To Aru Kagaku no Railgun and Biribiri, and a frightening display of road rage caused by nothing more than a pebble chipping some paintwork, and I found myself laughing throughout. Again, this really serves to display the versatility of this series, as it moves from more serious and focused story-telling through to far more light-hearted efforts that still manage to remember to keep the plot moving at a reasonable pace. It's a heady mix that really helps to keep all of Durarara!!'s proverbial balls in the air, and I can't help but admire it for making something so potentially difficult look so simple (and appeal so whole-heartedly) to the viewer.