Monday, 22 August 2011

Kami-sama no Memo-chou - Episode 7

The Renji versus Soichirou saga continues as we reach episode seven of Kami-sama no Memo-chou - rather disturbingly, it still isn't over yet either, meaning that we have to look forward another week before this particular story arc comes to its conclusion.

Anyhow, as Narumi engineers a meeting with Renji, we finally get to the bottom of his grudge with Sou - we already knew of their past friendship, but now all of the sordid details emerge (as Renji understands them, at least) complete with tales of a love triangle surrounding a woman named Hison and an allegation that Sou used her as a human shield as part of another gang rivalry incident, leading to her death.

Despite this shocking news, Narumi refuses to give up as he swears there is more to this falling out than meets the eye - with little hope of turning Renji's line of thinking around, his attentions again turn to Soichirou in an attempt to persuade him to ask Alice to help with uncovering the truth.  After initially refusing he eventually agrees, and despite continuing to insist to all and sundry that he caused Hison's death the truth is, in fact, far more complicated - indeed, it appears that Sou's lies are actually an attempt to protect Renji's feelings.  It's a nice idea, but one that suddenly looks set to take a decidedly dangerous turn....

From a glass half full point of view, this is the strongest episode of this story arc so far - it finally gives some meaning to all the ambling around of the past couple of weeks and puts some colour into the black and white picture that had been painted with good effect as the layers of truth are eventually revealed.  While I appreciate these aspects of the episode's story-telling, it's in danger of being over-whelmed by the slow and sometimes downright ponderous pacing - there feels like too much fluff getting in the way of the interesting parts of the story and what it's trying to say, and my interest in the whole thing ultimately suffers as a result.  It's a shame really, as there are glimmers of what made me fall in love with the show's opening episode, but after so much mediocre material from Kami-sama no Memo-chou of late, a glimmer here and there just won't cut it any more.

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