Saturday, April 26, 2014

Ep. 10 - Nanami's Precious One

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.

"Nanami no taisetsu na mono"
June 4, 1994
Duel Song:  Last Evolution (Shinka Kakumei Zenya)
Duel Theme: adoration - Adoration

Saionji walking off school campus. Not only is he expelled but it's posted up for all students to see.  Much like what he did with Wakaba's love letter.

It's clear from Miki and Juri's conversation that they believe that his actions were done without permission from End of the World. This says to me that even they didn't bother communicating with Saionji over what happened.  The actions demonstrated were within his character making it easy for others to assume.  This also marks how serious the duels are.  Don't follow things appropriately and you can get kicked out of school without even chance to defend your actions.

Saionji and Touga's interaction seems more genuine and sincere.  Saionji perhaps speaking in his calmest tone yet since he has been introduced.  This seems as though these two have reconciled their differences in their relationship.  And then Touga burns the exchange diary.  The fact that he does this to someone who he calls his best friend can be seen as a multitude of things but number one is it shows that he is willing to betray and manipulate ANYONE for the duels.  

Student Council meeting to discuss a letter from End of the World about the next dueling date drawing near.  Juri calls out that by process of elimination, Touga is up to duel. But Touga's still injured so Miki and Juri have a back and forth over which one of them would be best to step in for him instead (I would vote Juri myself).  Touga stops the clock with his comment that there is another duelist.  Juri and Miki are shocked by this revelation but Touga reveals no further information.

Slap!  Utena's down in the rose bushes this time as Nanami has taken her upset into her own hands about how he brother was injured in defense of Utena.  Utena can't respond to Nanami's questions because it is a barrage of everything she has been asking herself.  Nanami does not calm down, even after her brother arrives.  The words and way that he addresses Utena add fuel to her fire rather than calm her down.

Utena is sulking in the dark when Anthy turns the lights on to Utena.  Anthy converses with the kitten in the box the entire time but she honestly is doing more than that.  She is so amazingly intellectual that she not only is speaking to the cat but she is speaking to Utena as well.  She carries both conversations in this single moment without Utena realizing until the saucer of milk comes out.  Another time Utena stays focused on herself instead of others in her immediate presence.

Flashback to Touga's birthday party years ago.  Nanami is all dirty and scratched up from catching a cat to give to her big brother for his birthday.  I think this might be one of her first memories or so.  This is a strong memory because she has friends and family judging harshly the action she chose to acquire this cat.  I also believe that this might be around when they were newly adopted.  If she had been used to her rich life as she is now, she would have had someone but him a cat for her.  Not only did she bring a "flee-ridden" animal in to this setting but her actions were also embarrassing.  I think that it part of what Touga loved too about that gift.  It was something real and reminiscent of life before the adoption.  Before the abuse.

Nanami wakes up and tries her best to stop Touga from practicing his kendo and possibly furthering his injury.  He embraces her tenderly in her upset and she innocently asks for a kiss.  She's thinking of the sweet ones that he would plant on her eyes when she was upset as a child.  He doesn't see her as a child anymore and pulls away saying "I couldn't."  But where he is with his loss of innocence, he can't imagine his grown sister asking something innocent.  "We aren't kids anymore."  Flash of the box.

Utena attempts to see Touga at school but he isn't there.  She's suggested to go to the party at his house that evening.  She arrives with roses to offer as get well to him while discovering that this is his birthday party.  Anthy knew and brought a gift herself.  Juri and Miki are hawking over Touga trying to uncover the name of the new duelist and Touga keeps dodging them.  You can tell that Touga is really enjoying feeling in control here with this information he possesses.  

Anthy and Utena go to present their gifts and right away Utena begins to defend her gift of roses.  She couldn't simply say, thanks for taking that blow for me and I hope that you heal soon.  Her insecure actions amuse Touga that she really couldn't bother still to possibly just hand over the gift but had to say something defensive over her actions.  "I'm just satisfied that you came" has two purposes here.  First (and you can see this in his expression when he delivers that line) is that she's here so the new duelist can unveil.  Second, that manipulation that he could be her prince and that he has feelings for her.  

Nanami does not stand for Utena's choice in gift to her brother's reaction.  She snaps, she slaps.  Anthy steps in, verbalizing that the blame should actually be Saionji's.  Big brother's best friend?  No way!  Smack!  Meow!  Shock!  That stops Nanami's hand but her words ring out making everyone question if Utena and Touga are dating.  

Nanami sulks in the back corner in a gazebo, directly by the yellow rose bushes.  Not coincidence but if you watch Utena and don't analyze the rose colors to what's going on in the scene then you aren't doing it right.  And I'm not doing that here because you have google and can easily do that one yourself.  

Touga comes out to address Utena on the porch.  He discusses how he thinks that Nanami might have a big brother complex.  I think he believes that she loves him romantically/physically instead of highly adores.  She loves and admires her big brother truly but not like some siblings "love" each other in this show.

Touga shares with Utena the story of the birthday when Nanami gave him the cat and how one day it suddenly disappeared.  Anthy presents her gift, the cat!  Nanami is already hurt and the sound of her brother's laughter with the gift of a cat (something that only she had done before) was the final push that she needed. 

We see her reflecting on what happened after Touga's birthday with her cat.  He began neglecting his attentions with her and focusing on the cat.  She could do wrong but the cat couldn't.  She reasoned that it was the cat's fault.  The cat should not have taken so much from her so quickly.  

Nanami throws a rose down on Utena, challenging her to a duel without care that by not following school rules that she could be expelled.  Her brother bestows a Rose signet upon her revealing the new duelist.  

The shadow girls this time have a cat that continues to grow out of control as they argue what his name should be.  A situation snowballing as people are focusing on the wrong issue.  We're focusing on the student council right now that we don't notice the growing figure in the shadows that is really pulling the strings.  We could also see Nanami's anger as focus rather than Touga manipulating the situation to make it happen.

This is another one of my favorite duels.  Nanami has such a sleek duelist uniform, speed, and then she doesn't quit!  Her rose is knocked from her breast and she just pulls out a second blade and keeps going anyway!  She finally calms to her brother's brotherly embrace, crashing in to the emotions of what she did to that cat. How far she was willing to go to attack Utena even after the duel was over reflected of how far she was willing to go to remove the kitten from her brother's life.  She obviously feels regrets for taking her actions so far.

The Power of Dios will surely be mine.

 Screenshots from the lovely


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