Saturday, March 1, 2014

Ep. 5: Sunlit Garden - Finale

This episode analysis(musing) contains spoilers.  This episode analysis skims over topics and doesn't go into huge detail because each detail is really worth it's own post.  This analysis does not cover every detail to analyze but ones that I have chosen to discuss.  Also, these are my opinions and nothing official.  You do not have to accept or agree with any of this.

"Hikari sasu niwa - Fināre" 
April 30, 1997
Duel Song: Spira Mirabilis Gekijou
Duel Theme: raison - Reason

This episode begins with a duel!  Not the Rose Bride kind of duel though, a fencing duel within the fencing club's room between the captain of the fencing club (Juri) and Miki.  Miki actually takes the win in this match.
Juri notes his strength being his purity.  She teases that his increase in ability was because of the girl whose test he was grading before shutting off his reply with a comment that his sword is not one for battle.  Eluding to how he will raise his sword to defend Anthy instead?

We have a really pretty scene of Anthy and Miki having a sweet moment of watering the roses together in the Rose Garden.  By all aesthetics, they are a very cute coupling.  I think Anthy as Miki's Rose Bride would be very soft; pouring tea and both sitting quietly or playing the piano.  Nothing really intimate or even close, just quiet comfort.  I don't think Miki could handle Anthy's truths though.

Utena walks in on this moment and we cut to the music room with Anthy playing the piano.  Miki opens up about composing The Sunlit Garden and his relationship with his sister.  He also discloses how he "destroyed" it all.  When he talks about destroying it and how evil he is, you expect so much worse than "I got sick and couldn't play the piano so my sister had to play alone and cracked under the pressure."  Really Miki?  You think worse of your actions than anyone ever.  I suppose that's part of his purity.  That's part of why I don't care for these episodes.

Anthy tries to explain to Utena that she'll do as she minds meaning she bends to whoever the current champion is but Utena doesn't get it.  Anthy tells her a lot straight up how it is but Utena never really pieces it all together.  Utena instead thinks Anthy is still brain-washed submissive and pushes her will on Anthy to "be herself" and "I don't accept this so this should just stop".  Oh Utena, you sound right but you don't understand..  

Miki pays attention to all of this and calls a council meeting regurgitating the same words Utena just said to Anthy.  This demonstrates how he might be a child-genius, but still a child.

Miki is walking to the music room when he collides with his twin sister, Kozue.  Kozue is half-dressed because unlike her brother, she does not use the music room to play the piano.  Miki walks in to discover that Kozue was "making music" with a character of equal sexual experience, Touga.  
Anthy's timing here is perfect as Miki is still trying to shake the thought of Touga and his sister doing the nasty but now his "innocent" Anthy has appeared while Touga remarks that if he doesn't defend what he wants, someone else will take it.
Touga seems to clearly understand Anthy, commenting on how she does as whomever she is engaged to wants.  It's true and he's the only one who really gets it for the longest time.  Miki then asks Anthy a series of questions to which she answers in a fairly dodgy yet truthful manner all in a way to set things in motion.  Miki is ready to take up arms to defend Anthy's virginity-I mean, piano playing.

I'm sorry, I really feel like I'm not giving this episode the attention that I've given others before this point.  I don't mean to let you all down, but this episode... Guhhhhhh...  Ugh, please forgive me.. The Sunlit Garden episodes are two episodes that I am uninterested in.  I've honestly been dodging them for too long and it has put me behind on episode analysis because of this.  But I can't progress or get to some of my favorite episodes until I pass this hump so onward!

The Shadow Girls give us a performance of a pirate captain who has it all but doesn't stop seeking more not really knowing what it is he's truly seeking...  MIKI!  You're cute, sweet, and smart while not knowing what exactly you really want.  You think that it is Anthy but it isn't really.  You just keep chasing that memory of your past.

Juri watches the duel with opera glasses.  Older sister-ish towards Miki watching like this but going ahead and defining how classy she is with her binocular choice.  Miki notes how he can see how she beat Saionji which to me just demonstrates his dueling strength as being lower than Saionji's because honestly, Utena's skills are not anywhere near as honed as the rest of this crew.  
She didn't even need Dios to crush Miki, Anthy crushed his spirit all on her own.  Why did she cheer for Utena?  I've read various things from she really wanted it.  It's too early in the duels for her to really care.  I think it was more manipulating the outcome.

Back to the piano room where Kozue is actually playing the piano and The Sunlit Garden clip actually is changed to something less well-played because Kozue's playing is choppy.  She explains that she only ever learned to play because of a love letter.  I don't know if that is true or if she's just trying to show out to her friend there.  No telling with Kozue.
I do find it interesting that the super evil devastating event of destruction that Miki focuses on is nothing but a passing part in Kozue's story of her past.  She remembers it but that is not what really destroyed the garden for her.

But next time, I won't lose!

Screenshots from the lovely


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