Well, that’s not good.
— With every new episode, we get more and more information about what had happened on that unfortunate day. Essentially, the Mystics had a city where they lived in coexistence with the Earless, but the betrayal caused all of the latter to go wild. In the end, the lone survivor is a little girl by the name of Roz.
— So how exactly has Roz managed to make it on her own since then? Shrug. There are gaps in the story that Listeners isn’t particularly concerned with. Just go with the flow and don’t sweat the minor details. I can only assume that the girl grows her own food, sews her on clothes, makes her own medicine, so on and so forth. As for loneliness, well… we’ll get to that in a bit.
— Back in the present, the kids’ journey has taken them to the coast. Apparently, Mu has never seen the ocean before. Or maybe she’s simply forgotten that she has. Unfortunately, the Mystics and their city are nowhere to be found. And to make matters worse, Echo suddenly collapses with a nosebleed.
— Mu’s pleas for help allows her Core Part to resonate. This then opens up the secret path to the Mystics’ city. Kinda like a chosen one sort of deal. The Mystics aren’t exactly an ancient race, but there are some analogues…
— These street names are probably music references that I know nothing about. Honestly, the only time I ever listen to music by itself — as in music that isn’t part of a movie or a video game — is when I want to drown out all of the annoying chatter in the office. I’ve been working from home since 2018, however, so I pretty much never listen to music.
— Roz, who’s now all grown up, eventually shows up to take a look at Echo. She immediately starts dropping major bombs on us. For instance, Echo is afflicted with sound sickness. And in time, he will transform into an Earless. Prolonged exposure to Players appears to be the cause. The more he rides with Mu, the less human he becomes. It does help, however, to take breaks. Echo later seems to imply that he can keep his symptoms under control, but he simply got careless.
— I can’t help but think back to Bilin and Kevin. Maybe it was a blessing that he became a shut-in for an extended period of time. If he had continued riding continuously with his partner, I guess he would’ve met the same fate? Well, I dunno…
— This is where Mu and Roz starts butting heads. The latter sees the Earless as friends, so it’s no big deal to her if Echo becomes one. For obvious reasons, Mu disagrees. Even if she can still befriend an Earless Echo, they can’t really communicate with each other, can they? Unfortunately, Roz has no interest in helping a Player ever since her people were betrayed.
— A bunch of Earless show up, which probably explains why Roz isn’t lonely. Her family and friends haven’t really died per se. They’ve simply changed forms. Hell, maybe they’ve even helped her get food and clothes. So are the Earless immortal? Can they die from old age?
— In the end, Mu is willing to sacrifice it all in order to save her friend, so she hands over her Core Part. This isn’t really unexpected, though. If someone told me if I had to give up the rights to driving in order to save a friend, I’d probably do it. Well, I suppose being a Player and driving a car is not exactly equivalent, but eh…
— When Echo regains consciousness, however, he acts as though Mu had been scammed once again. He tells her that there’s no way he could turn into an Earless. In reality, he knows the truth, but I assume he’s lying because he wants to stay by Mu’s side. After all, if she knows that his life is in “danger” — I guess it’s arguable whether or not turning into an Earless is truly a bad thing — then she wouldn’t let him accompany her. At the same time, however, she probably can’t get very far without him (and vice versa). They kinda need each other if they want to find Jimi. Still, isn’t Echo scared? Isn’t he worried about potentially losing his human form?
— So Echo goes to have a chat with Roz in order to retrieve Mu’s Core Part. We thus get a brief history lesson about the island and how Jimi crash-landed onto it. Everything, Roz claims, was so peaceful back then. The Mystics and the Earless lived together in harmony. She acknowledges, however, that the Earless are dangerous to normal humans. So we’re missing something. Obviously, those Players did a bad thing; they shouldn’t have betrayed the Mystics. But what’s the actual solution? How can humans prevent the Earless from attacking them? It isn’t as though they are unjustified in hating the Earless unless there is yet some crucial missing piece of information. In any case, the only hint regarding a potential solution is something about love. Maybe the kids can jam out and play a song about a love so great that it pacifies both humans and the Earless. Maybe that’s what Jimi tried to do.
— Alright, since Echo can’t convince Roz to give the Core Part back, it’s time for some action. As a result, the Dada sisters make their convenient return to the stage.
— The Dada sisters immediately try to attack a defenseless Mu, but an Earless jumps to our heroine’s defense. Unfortunately, we already know that the Dada sisters seem to have some strange ability to send the Earless into a frenzy, which is exactly what happens next.
— Seeing as how all of her family and friends are going mad, Roz has no choice but to rely on Mu and Echo to stop the Dada sisters. The resulting battle is… well, not much of one. Listeners isn’t all too concerned about extended fight scenes. Mu and Echo pretty much kick the Dada sisters’ asses in no time flat.
— At one point, Echo assures Mu that she can go all out, because he had swiped a bunch of medicine (hopefully with Roz’s permission). Well, he had better hoped that the stash lasts him until the last episode. In any case, their teamwork has certainly improved considerably since the second episode… even if I don’t really know what specifically they’ve done to become make themselves stronger. Again, just go with the flow.
— In the aftermath, Roz relents and gives the kids a little more information. After all, the kids did save her people. She reveals that Jimi is perhaps still alive. He was supposed to come to the island after the Fest, but he was taken elsewhere. Welp, the wild goose chase continues.
— Roz also warns Mu not to hesitate: “Fruit that you’ve been gazing at fondly tends to get pecked at by birds before you know it.” Um, okay. It’s not like Mu has any competition, though. Who else is gonna peck at this fruit? Nir? She’s batshit insane.
— Right before the credits, Roz tells her father she won’t fix the fix the hole in the ceiling right away. Maybe she knows she can’t stay walled off forever. Hmm, the only wall-related music I know is Pink Floyd’s The Wall, and it’s not even because I like it. One of my high school lit teacher was a huge Pink Floyd nerd, and we pretty much spent a week listening and interpreting every track on that album. Let’s just say it went in one ear and came out the other.