Sunday, 29 September 2013

Monogatari Second Season - Episode 13

Despite accepting his offer of help, as this week's episode of Monogatari Second Season begins we see that Nadeko has instead decided to eschew any assistance from her "big brother" now that she knows the true face of the snake which seems to have been haunting her, making her excuses so that she can go it alone and do Kuchinawa's bidding.

Put simply, Kuchinawa is looking for his body, and he wants Nadeko's help in finding it - something that it seems she has little choice but to accept, although she does at least manage to persuade her new "friend" to let her attend school as normal as long as she agrees to help him look for his body come nightfall.  Thus, Nadeko's uncomfortable school life continues, as Kuchinawa probes her about school life and the behaviour of her class, and we learn a little more about Nadeko's take on life, together with the fact that she's actually the class representative, if only because nobody else wanted to take on the role.

Once night falls, Nadeko sneaks out to look for Kuchinawa's body - unfortunately for her, she's not all that adept at either the searching part or the sneaking out part, and as a result of the latter she ends up running into Araragi who has gone out looking for her after one of her sisters received a call from Nadeko's parents.  Luckily for Nadeko, Tsuhiki had the presence of mind to lie, telling them that Nadeko was staying over with her, and as a result Nadeko gets to spend the night with Araragi.  Well, she might had done were it not for a (probably fortuitous) intervention from Shinobu, who has a few things to say about their guest herself.  Could it be that she's figured out that the accessory Nadeko sports is actually an oddity?

Overall, this felt like a really strong episode of Monogatari, with a couple of moments of great humour and an opportunity to delve into Nadeko's character in a way that was never really attempted by the first series.  This has actually fleshed her out quite nicely from the quiet and somewhat ill-defined character we've seen previously, and it's certainly piqued my interest as to where this story arc is headed, even if we know at least partly how things are going to wind up.  Having felt like its previous arc was lacking in the character stakes, this is a refreshing return to what the series does best.

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