Black Bullet Ep. 2: Tears of our lolis

Black Bullet - 0210

Won’t anybody please think of the children?! Only if they’re girls though…

Episode Summary

Seitenshi, ruler of the Tokyo Area, has an exorbitant reward for anyone who can retrieve a mysterious suitcase. Should the suitcase fall into the wrong hands, however, the Monoliths may go down, exposing humanity to the Gastrea threat. Kagetane, the masked man, shows up to this all important meeting to taunt everybody. He intends to locate the suitcase first for his own nefarious reasons.

Afterwards, Rentaro is forced to save a Cursed Child from the evil society. He was too late to save her from being cruelly shot in the back, but the girl somehow survives long enough for Rentaro to get her medical care. The next day, however, everyone at Enju’s primary school discovers her true identity as one of the Cursed Children. The little girl then runs away from home, forcing Rentaro to look all over for her.

Notes

• Oh look, the protagonist is a 16 year old kid after all. I should have just stuck to my guns.

• So all of the civil officers have been called to a meeting at the Ministry of Defense. As a result, we get to run into this piece of work:

Black Bullet - 0201

The tough guy headbutts Rentaro out of nowhere — probably to assert his alpha dominance or something — but what really sets our hero off is when the guy refers to Enju as a tool. Uguu, my loli is a bona fide loli with bona fide loli feelings, Mister! You take that back!

• Oh god, the grown men and their precious lolis:

Black Bullet - 0202

Apparently, they even rank civil officers and their lolis for some reason. Considering how humanity is on the brink of extinction, I didn’t realize this was a game, but, well, here we are. Rentaro and Enju as a pairing are somewhere in 100,000th department, which means they suck. But ah, don’t you guys worry! He sees his loli as more than just a tool, so their bond for each other will set them apart from these tools and their tools.

• Some important-looking old man then enters the room and says, “Once you’ve heard what the job is, you will not be able to decline.” Uh, okay…

• So the job is to eliminate the Gastrea threat from last week’s episode and retrieve some mysterious case. Uh, why exactly can’t you back out after hearing this? No, really.

• The masked dude from last week’s episode then somehow appears in the middle of the room without anyone noticing. He’s got magic, I see… and of course, he’s got a loli of his own too: his own daughter.

Black Bullet - 0211

• Tough guy from earlier then tries to attack the masked dude — his name is Kagetane, by the way — but naturally, the big, badass sword just bounces off as if the bad guy’s made of metal. Kagetane’s defeat is reserved for our hero ranked in the 100,000s. That’s just how it is, buddy. Don’t get too discouraged.

• The entire room proceeds to open fire on the mysterious man only for the bullets to freeze in place once they get too close to him. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me but it seems pretty fucking reckless to unload your firearms all at the same time in a tiny room.

• You can’t shoot this guy because his organs have somehow been replaced with Varanium instruments. Okay then.

• Kagetane then reflects all of those bullets back at his assailants. Only the quick-thinking high school kid ranked in the 100,000s had the foresight to duck. Welp, that’s one way to eliminate the competition. Now he’s free to shoot up the rankings.

• Oh dear, what’s in the box…?

Black Bullet - 0203

Oh wait, nevermind. The head in the box is no one we’ve ever met, so I don’t know why they even bothered to include this scene other than to shock the viewers with a bleeding box.

• But seriously, it’s been ten continuous minutes without Enju, which is nice. This is about to change, but you really do have to appreciate the little things to stick with anime blogging.

• So Enju and Rentaro are just hanging out in some shopping district when they come across a loli being chased by a pair of adults. The Cursed Children that aren’t lucky enough to be Initiators pretty much have to live in abject poverty, resorting to petty theft from time to time to survive. This would be really sad if the whole thing just didn’t feel so… hm, manipulative. Ah, woe be the downtrodden Cursed Children! Everyone hates them even though they’re humanity’s last hope against the Gastrea threat! That’s the thing with discrimination in these anime series. They’re always incredibly one-sided and devoid of nuance. Yes, discrimination has nuance, and you’re selling the issue short by painting such a serious matter in a one-dimensional way.

Not only that, our victims are all cute, little girls. How can you look at tortured loli and not feel that sharp pang in your heart? How?! Seriously, is there any reason why the Cursed Children had to be female-only? How can you expect anyone to take the story seriously when you have such a ridiculous contrivance? You can’t then turn around and try to tear-jerk me.

Black Bullet - 0212

• Oh the angst. Enju’s tears move our hero to action. Step aside, little loli… I’ve got a loli to save. Sir, I’m commandeering your bike! It’s for a greater cause.

• This is how eye-rollingly bad it is: the cops took the thieving girl to some abandoned location and executed her gangland style. There’s nothing here but cheap thrills. We’ll have the bad guys shoot a loli in the back of the head just so we can pat ourselves on the back for recognizing such a clear-cut case of discrimination.

• Enju and the masked man’s daughter are model rabbit and model mantis respectively, which probably clues us in on the lolis’ fighting style or whatever. On the one hand, we should totally not discriminate against these Cursed Children, guys, because they’re people too! Cute, loli people. But on the other hand, lemme tell you about which model of loli this is.

• Ah, I see. To Kagetane, the Cursed Children represent mankind’s next step in evolution! Except they’re all girls so I’m not sure how that’s going to work. But in any case, the masked man tries to tempt our hero into joining his side! And gosh, perhaps we should consider it! The people in Tokyo are so mean to the lolis, after all.

Black Bullet - 0213

• But Rentaro’s an idiot. No, he’s not an idiot for turning the man down. He’s an idiot for shooting the pile of cash. Dude, what did the bills ever do to you? The masked man then leaves without picking up the pile of cash. Gosh, that money could’ve been put to good use… like saving wayward lolis.

• The following day, Rentaro rushes to Enju’s school because rumors of her being a Cursed Child have been circulating. All this outrage merely culminates in a scene in which we get to see Enju bathing.

Black Bullet - 0205

That’s how it is, honestly: arrggggh, discrimination is bad… but ooh, sexy lolis. Of course, this scene is all in Rentaro’s head, i.e. it’s a memory of his, but that makes it even worse. My loli has run away! And oh God, I miss her so! I see her everywhere I go in this tiny apartment. And this is where she would bathe and try to seduce me!

Black Bullet - 0206

disgusted

• Just on cue, Seitenshi enacts a controversial law that extends rights to the Cursed Children. I’m sure future episodes will be all about the outrage amongst the Tokyo population over this new law.

• Rentaro descends into the sewers to meet a community of Cursed Children… all led by this benevolent-looking old man…

Black Bullet - 0207

Sure.

• Tear-jerking flashback of how Rentaro and Enju first met… yawn.

• Ooh, she was like a feral animal, but I gained her trust…

Black Bullet - 0208

• Uguu, Enju was there all along and she heard everything…

Black Bullet - 0209

Ah, the tears of our lolis…

Closing Thoughts

rolleyespuking

Advertisements

10 thoughts on “Black Bullet Ep. 2: Tears of our lolis

  1. ChaosCallMe

    “My loli is not a tool!” Granted, I find it admirable (even if it IS extremely cheesy) whenever a protagonist stands up for someone who is being degraded to something less than human… it’s important that points like this are driven home. But then I saw the screencap of the old farts and their little girlies right below it, and I just about fell out of my chair. Fuck this show. I kind of want to watch it though to see the weird masked psycho slaughter some lolis though. But would that be TOO edgy, or does the show have the guts to play hardball? LOLI MASSACRE… THE OTAKUS WILL SEND DEATH THREATS….. NOT MY MATERIAL IMOUTO!!!

    Reply
    1. E Minor Post author

      I kind of want to watch it though to see the weird masked psycho slaughter some lolis though.

      Yeah, I don’t think that’s what he wants to do. If anything, he wants to create a world of only lolis. And himself.

      Reply
  2. eternia

    I kind of predicted already that the loli would survive, how else is the protagonist’s harem going to expand?
    As usual, anime has pretty bad reasoning when it comes to discrimination. Sure, these loli may have red pupils and unusual strength, but why would that makes you have deep hatred to them? They killed your parents or what?

    Reply
    1. Naota

      I think the idea is that they’re part Gastrea, however minimally, so society uses them as a scapegoat for their anger and frustration in the face of how impotent humanity is against the actual thing. Parts of society shift the blame to an easy target, and resent having to rely on them to maintain their safety, even if this is completely unfair. I sort of get it – it’s not a bad idea on this level.

      Thing is… it’s still really stupid in execution. As always, anime takes what should be a neat subtlety of the setting and turns it into an overt pantomime you could never take seriously.

      Having what essentially amounts to modern-day Japanese mall cops (complete with car and mall!) turn into cold-blooded child killers just because of minority discrimination is about three orders of magnitude too far for the setting as its portrayed. It doesn’t matter that people in general hate these lolis; death is still a serious affair in this well-ordered world. You can’t have contemporary Japan – now with casual murder and no consequences!

      These cops just committed and covered up a brutal murder which could and should ruin their own lives in a society that still manages strip malls, middle schools, and ramen shops. At some point a hobo was going to go into that building and find a decomposing loli corpse. The main character, a public servant, is a one of a dozen prime witnesses who saw them take her away. There is no sane reason this wouldn’t come back to them, just as there is no sane reason for them to have gone that far in the first place.

      Reply
      1. Taka

        Well if they force the kids that aren’t initiators to live in abject poverty away from the rest of the “civilized” humanity. I don’t see how it’s entirely impossible for them to get away with murder. People may see it as nothing more than putting down an ornery dog. A large portion of our well-ordered society has no qualms about putting down misbegotten strays. It would just be an indication of how far beneath humanity these kids are seen. Is it nuanced? No, but I don’t think it’s completely illogical either.

        To make a comparison to slavery, American slaves who worked in the fields were often more physically imposing than the masters they worked for and also in greater number, yet they rarely raised a hand because the rest of society would come down on them if they did. A killed slave would more than likely just cost somebody money, like if you got in an accident on the freeway. Exchange insurance information and move on. Moreover they were made to feel inferior psychologically as an even greater means of control. Racism and slavery was internalized and systematic. I would argue that even back then we had a fairly well-ordered society, yet we still discriminated in a way that was quite extreme, and also not nuanced.

        But of course this show clearly isn’t a metaphor for slavery. So what is it a metaphor for? That’s what I’ve been trying to figure out. Maybe low birthrates?

        Reply
  3. Naota

    I have to admit, I kind of wish they elaborated on Enju’s character development a little more. All we got to see was angry loli->passive loli->FOOD TASTES GOOD->everything is wonderful, over maybe a minute in total. This transition needed (needs?) an episode to itself; the sort of character arc on display here is the stuff good stories are made of. For once the audience might actually care about the leading pair before something happens to them which requires us to.

    Reply
    1. E Minor Post author

      This transition needed (needs?) an episode to itself

      Sure. You can see the development of the precious bond between Rentaro and Enju here and here. Alright, I’m being a bit of a smart ass about it, and you’re right: in an ideal world, the relationship between the guy and his Initiator could use a little more meat to it. But honestly, I doubt the whole “Cursed Children” gimmick would really change how a man goes about bonding with a young female child, which is a topic that anime is apparently an expert at.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s