|祭囃し編 其の壱 三四
|October 8, 2007
|Naraku no Hana
Matsuribayashi-hen, Chapter One: Miyo (祭囃し編 其の壱 三四, Matsuribayashi-hen Sono Ichi – Miyo) is the forty-first episode of the Higurashi no Naku Koro ni anime and the fourteenth episode of the Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai anime.
The episode tells the story of Miyo Takano mainly through flashbacks.
This is the first episode of the second season which is the Kai or "answer arc" where during the opening titles, when we see that when Rika seems to turn towards the viewer and waves, she is actually waving to Hanyū, who is dressed as a schoolgirl. Hanyū seems surprised, then embarrassed, then smiles, and then rushes to join the main characters as they walk to school.
The episode opens with a house where a little girl is speaking to an older man. We will learn later that the girl is Tanashi Miyoko and the older man is Hifumi Takano. He explains to her how he believes parasites can affect the human frontal lobe, how controversial that theory is, and how if he succeeds his achievement will outlive him make him "a god."
The episode shifts then to young girls trying to open a lock to a door. Then to a bus driver having a heart attack. These flashbacks are important episodes in the life of the woman who will become Miyo Takano. The bus swerves into oncoming traffic, and the scene immediately shifts to a hospital where the young girl is with her critically ill father, Takemitsu Tanashi. She learns her mother has died. Her father tells her that all of their relatives died during WWII and, if he should die, she should seek out his professor, Hifumi Takano. Her father goes critical and the girl is left crying "Father!"-- お父さん. Without any family members she is sent to an orphanage which approaches a Dickensian nightmare. The children are beaten and abused. A child who spills his food is made to lick it up from the floor.
Three orphans tell Tanashi Miyoko that there is a nice orphanage outside, and together they plot to escape and find it. One girl--Eriko--states that the key to the bird coop also opens the lock to the main door. They succeed in opening the door but are spotted. They disperse in the hope this will lessen the chance all will be caught. Tanashi Miyoko is nearly caught but bites the thumb of her pursuer.
After the advertisement break we see the adult Miyo Takano smiling as she receives a tremendous sum of money from an older man that we will learn later is Koizumi, a friend of Hifumi Takano. He alludes that he could not help Hifumi Takano in the past, that his money is part of his atone-ment, and that he will support her research. The scene shifts to men meeting with the adult Miyo Takano and proclaiming their interest in her research, noting that it previously did not receive support from the military. They confess that because of this the "Supreme Allied Commander"--who would have been General of the Army Douglas MacArthur--never heard of it and, "It is as if Dr. Takano has taken over your body to try and complete his research." The men refer to her as "Takano-san" and warn her that the purpose of her research is not to obtain a biological weapon.
The men further explain that "the Council" stipulates that someone else must head the project but reassure Takano that they will allow her to choose someone she can control. They also grant her the rank of "major"--3等陸佐--sansa. She is then introduced to Kyousuke Irie whom she accepts as the director. She is then introduced to both Tomitake Jirō and Okonogi. The scene then switches to the sky with rain falling. The perspective is that of a person looking directly up, and this view will be repeated in a later episode. The child Tanashi Miyoko wanders in the rain missing a shoe. She calls to her mother and the scene dissolves to a flashback that looks like a home movie of a department store, then the child Tanashi Miyoko happily receiving a meal with a small French flag stuck in it from her parents. The "film" breaks and returns us to Tanashi Miyoko pursued by the orphanage staff. She calls "god"--kamisama-- "stupid" and demands to know why she deserves this. She demands she be killed by lightning, and lighting appears to strike to her surprise.
After the end-titles, the adult Miyo Takano awakes in the van just prior to the execution of the the annihilation of the villagers as if from a nightmare. Alone, she laughs over her and her grandfather's triumph.
The episode ends with the "chibi" Rika and Hanyū arguing about the meaning of "Auauu~" as scenes from the next episode flash behind them. Hanyū states she does not want to discuss it, and Rika remarks that she heard it from one of her father's "treasured videos" where "a blond man and a woman engaged in professional wrestling inside a car." Hanyū can only gasp "Rika!"