Inuyashiki Ep. 11: Baby, you’re a firework!

Ichiro finally returns home after a long night of saving people only to be confronted by his family. But it’s okay! They finally love him now, because he’s no longer a lame oyaji. He’s Super Jesus! Maybe if I become Super Jesus, people will love me too. That’s certainly what Ichiro’s son (Christ, I don’t even know his name) seems to think, and it’s hard not to blame the kid. He’s being bullied everyday, and his parents don’t even know about it. Ichiro was a pushover too as a human, and now his kid is following in those footsteps. You can’t exactly just tell someone to become a robot, though.

I know parenting isn’t easy (no sarcasm), but it’s hard not to notice a despondent, withdrawn child. You may not know why he’s depressed, but you have to be able to see it, no? We know so little about Ichiro’s family, though. We can’t even tell if the parents have tried. The show focused so much on Hiro, everything here is practically opaque. But hey, I don’t have kids and I don’t plan to, so I’ll just leave everything to Super Jesus. Ichiro tells his son that death makes life precious and dear to us. And uh, you need to love yourself or something. Meanwhile, you can hear people calling for Hiro’s head on TV. They want him executed. Why? Because he doesn’t understand the weight of life.

The news program even interviews a little girl, and she agrees. Off with Hiro’s head!

Speaking of the devil, our wounded supervillain pays Naoyuki a surprise visit. He no longer has his arms, but he’s still dangerous. It turns out, however, that Hiro simply wants to return to the way things were. Y’know, just two pals reading Shounen Jump together. Unfortunately, Naoyuki isn’t interested. And why would he be? You can’t just kill hundreds of people, go “Oopsie, my bad,” and expect to turn back the clock. Hiro’s a kid, though… a kid with serious mental issues, so I guess nothing here is all that surprising.

When the opportunity arises, Naoyuki slips away to the bathroom and calls Ichiro for help. Hiro realizes now — after killing hundreds and hundreds of people — that he hasn’t got a friend in the world:

Hiro: “Everybody betrayed me! I’m fed up with this world!”

Trust me, that’s what he said. So he takes off. He tries to pay Shion a visit as well, but I guess he’s realized by now that he’d only just make her cry. He’d only disappoint her the same way he disappointed his mother.

Ichiro, on the other hand, finally gets to have the happy family life he always wanted. They finally spend time together, visit places together, share laughs together. Unfortunately, his time in Eden is short-lived, because here comes Trump to deliver the bad news:

That meteor is coming, and I guess America couldn’t train a motley crew of oil drillers fast enough. For us chumps, it’s time to enjoy whatever time we have left. For Super Jesus, it’s time for him to fulfill his destiny. Since Ichiro can hear people’s prayers from all around the world, he has to do something. Shit, they’re not even beating around the bush anymore with the religious parallels. He’s literally going to die for everyone’s sins souls. Later that night, he tries to leave quietly (did he at least write a note?), but Mari anticipates everything. She tries to stop him, ‘cause, y’know, what if he fails? Wouldn’t he rather share his last moments with his family? But this is Super Jesus, so he’s gotta at least try. At this point, the poor shibe takes a hilarious tumble down the stairs for some reason. The poor dog tries to see the old man one last time, but the latter’s already a distant shooting star in the night sky.

Ichiro brings as much water as he can carry to space, because he’s going to need it. He then tries over and over to blow the meteor up to no avail. His lasers just don’t have enough firepower. He’s just too weak. Super Jesus isn’t super omnipotent. When all hope seems lost, however, Hiro suddenly appears besides Ichiro. He might hate Japan — and probably the rest of humanity as well — but he still loves Shion… and oddly enough, Naoyuki. And he’s got a plan: if he self-destructs, he might generate enough force to push the meteor off course. Apparently, the self-destruct mechanism can be triggered by simply pushing both eyes in. Seems rather easy to set off if you ask me. Don’t get into a dirty street fight.

But despite Shion bursting into tears when she sees the explosion in the sky, Hiro’s efforts aren’t enough either. Ichiro realizes that he has no choice but to self-destruct as well. It is at this point that Katy Perry’s “Firework” suddenly starts playing on the radio where I am, and I couldn’t help but feel that the timing is too perfect. Once again, an explosion fills the sky, and this time, it’s time for both Naoyuki and Ichiro’s family to cry.

And you know what? I feel nothing. Hiro is too much of a monster to be redeemed at the last second. It’s not like he’s redeemed anyway! He only wants to stop the meteor in order to save two whole people. If those two weren’t around, would he have bothered? Probably not.

As for Ichiro, he just didn’t get enough of the spotlight for me to be emotionally invested in his character arc. I don’t feel as I know the old man all that well, and maybe I’m just too cynical, but his last second reconciliation with his family doesn’t seem like much of a positive to me. If it takes extraordinary circumstances for his kids to respect him, then where does that leave the rest of us? Not only that, his wounds seem self-inflicted; he’s somewhat responsible for his family’s neglect. Nobody made him a pushover. He made himself a pushover. But more importantly, he just doesn’t seem like a very good father to me. He doesn’t even know his son is being bullied, and I haven’t forgotten his blase approach to Mari’s dropping grades and murky career aspirations.

In the epilogue, Ichiro’s kid learns to fight back against his bullies. I guess the solution to physical and mental abuse is to bloody some noses. Alas, if only those suicidal kids across the nation would just learn this invaluable lesson. Meanwhile, Mari gets her manga published. Cool, I guess?

Inuyashiki had a promising start… for about three damn episodes. Remember that episode with all the gratuitous depiction of rape for no good reason? Yeah, it all just went downhill from there. Worst of all, that episode contributed absolutely nothing to the overall narrative. Nothing.

Final grade: C-

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3 Replies to “Inuyashiki Ep. 11: Baby, you’re a firework!”

  1. A C- is far too generous. This is one of the two or three worst shows I’ve ever seen. Besides the dreadful writing, it is, at its core, horribly misanthropic. I mean, stupidity aside, it kept trying to make us feel sympathetic towards Hiro, a mass murderer, because, well, most people apparently deserve to die! This show is so awful and hateful that it doesn’t even work as camp.

  2. Both Super Jesus and Hiro die for our sins, huh? This animu is pathetic. Ichiro is lame, and I seriously don’t like how the story tries to manipulate my emotion in such a cheap and sleazy with last minute emotional moment. Not to mention that Ichiro and his wife are just terrible parents. And his son is seriously shafted here. His sister just wants to be a mangaka but she is the one who got all the spotlight? He is bullied to depression! Don’t the creators think that one is more serious and deserving of spotlight?! I guess he isn’t moe enough.

    Hiro is shit and he dies like a f*cking chump. Nothing the animu do will ever make me sympathize with that little f*cker.

    At least both Super Jesus and Hiro are dead. Good riddance to two terrible characters (all of them suck to be honest) and one terrible animu.

  3. It is at this point that Katy Perry’s “Firework” suddenly starts playing on the radio where I am, and I couldn’t help but feel that the timing is too perfect”

    My stomach !!!!

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