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Hell Girl: Fourth Twilight Discussion Thread

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  • [Summer 2017] Hell Girl: Fourth Twilight Discussion Thread

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    地獄少女 宵伽

    Airs: Friday, July 14

    Studio: Studio Deen

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    Note
    As usual, please try to follow these three easy forum courtesy habits when replying:
    1) If you're the first person to post about an episode in any given week, please indicate in the first line which episode you're posting about.
    2) If someone has already posted about an episode before you, please quote that post (or a relevant reply to that post), or include the episode title in the first line. ("Re: Episode 1")

  • #2
    Episode 1

    This sticks to what has been the traditional theme for an episode 1 of Hell Girl so far, that is classroom bullying. It's pretty highly reminiscent of the first episode of the second season and that whole classroom is against the victim and she doesn't even have an idea of which specific person she should seek vengeance on.

    Mixed in with that (not like second season's first episode where the ultimate target was unquestionably detestable), though, is a moral quandry that harkens back to the plot of episode 3 of the third season, where the person who started the torment is actually trying to make amends. Yukawa goes about it in a rather unhealthy way (her singular obsession with smartphone messaging proves out of control for her not just with the original cause of the incident, but her attempts to make up for it for Mayama), but in the end Yukawa did seem sincere, so her meeting Hell Girl's judgement (very painfully at that) was quite wrenching as is the case with many of the third seasons's morally ambiguous targets. And they mysterious new supernatural girl actually seems to be questioning Hell Girl on that very tangent. Quite interested to see what we are ultimately going to get with her.

    The emphasis on smartphones we get this episode was something I had already anticipating. After so many years, I expect this season's episodic stories will focus on more recent issues that the seasons from around a decade ago couldn't get to.

    I really loved the use of the "Mitsuganae" theme (one of my favorite BGM pieces) on the rooftop scene. I wasn't really expecting it would be used this season since it feels so closely tied to Yuzuki in my mind. I'm curious about how the bullied girl Mayama Shizuka, though, has the same family name as Mayama Azusa (perhaps the client I loathed the most in the entire franchise) from Three Vessels. I wonder if there's any special significance (family relation to her?) to be explored in that, but I'd assume this girl is completely episodic, so perhaps not.
    Last edited by EmperorBrandon; 07-14-2017, 04:44 PM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by EmperorBrandon View Post
      Episode 1

      but in the end Yukawa did seem sincere, so her meeting Hell Girl's judgement (very painfully at that) was quite wrenching as is the case with many of the third seasons's morally ambiguous targets. And they mysterious new supernatural girl actually seems to be questioning Hell Girl on that very tangent. Quite interested to see what we are ultimately going to get with her.
      I suspected Yukawa was in on her bullying from the start, though I wasn't sure whether she was still annoyed with Mayama at the time she shared her lunch. Looked to me more like she was smirking at Mayama eating that egg-salad sandwich (gas inducing) than being honestly glad, though the timing is strange if she really did feel regretful. I did feel sorry for her, and it is unfortunate things turned out the way they did; but to Ai, it's a clear-cut job, so questioning the ethics behind her judgements seem meaningful, yet ultimately futile since she's only there to do one thing. I'm curious about the mysterious new character as well. Seems like we did get this type of conscientious objection from Ai herself in the past, but now it's manifested as an actual character, so it'll be interesting to see how that affects Ai's obligation.
      The emphasis on smartphones we get this episode was something I had already anticipating. After so many years, I expect this season's episodic stories will focus on more recent issues that the seasons from around a decade ago couldn't get to.
      Yeah, a bit amusing. I was thinking Mayama would "Google..call Hell Girl" Actually, wasn't there a previous episode where someone already used their flip phone to call her up? I thought that was shown in the second season, if not last.

      And the real person who should've been damned to hell is Yokota. I don't see what the point was for him to be broadcasting those messages. What was there for him to gain by publicizing his conversation with Yukawa and Mayama when he's just a loner like they were? I hope they revisit him getting his just desserts, but seeing that Mayama's story is already concluded, I'm not sure how he'll be involved in a separate scenario.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Episode 1

        Originally posted by Sensuifu View Post
        Actually, wasn't there a previous episode where someone already used their flip phone to call her up? I thought that was shown in the second season, if not last.
        At the very end of the second season, they show a flip phone being used. And I assume (if I'm not remembering incorrectly) that they appeared to some extent in the third season.

        Comment


        • #5
          Episode 2

          Ah, so we get a female comedy duo this time, but there's not much funny about the abuse they both suffered before coming together, and while it starts out sweet, eventually fall into it again with their own relationship. The nature of their work obscures the exact issues at first, where it first seemed Nanako was a talent Haru envied, but it was just part of an act that Haru had written. The showbiz theme reminds me of the one with the hapless director from the second season, but this one doesn't have the humorous elements that one had apart from the act the two put on. This is more like a number of episodes (like the one with tightly-knit schoolgirls) in the past where the tortured relationship ends up with them both wanting to continue being together in hell forever.

          The girl who has come questioning Ai has, according to Ai, forgotten her identity. Doesn't really seem like this new girl is in a position to affect Ai that much with how they interact now. Curious what will come of with just four more episodes of involvement.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Episode 2
            Originally posted by EmperorBrandon View Post
            This is more like a number of episodes (like the one with tightly-knit schoolgirls) in the past where the tortured relationship ends up with them both wanting to continue being together in hell forever.
            Having a mutual damnation is never fun. These types of episodes are a bit saddening as usually the victim is the one who firsts rejects sending their enemy to hell; but then said enemy summons Ai themselves and then the victim is left to suffer despite forgiving in that one instance. Accepting the outcome as if they knew they were just as guilty can be a bit sickening, since there's always that possibility they could work things out. Giving up like that is basically a double suicide- only one suffers immediately in hell, while the other will likely/eventually suffer emotional/psychological trauma as soon as they realize what that mark is for.

            The girl who has come questioning Ai has, according to Ai, forgotten her identity. Doesn't really seem like this new girl is in a position to affect Ai that much with how they interact now. Curious what will come of with just four more episodes of involvement.
            Curious if the 'reminiscence' episodes will involve her some manner. Might not, as that would essentially make them 'new', but it would be interesting if she really does have some kind of role (off screen, or through Ai's thoughts).

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Episode 2

              Originally posted by Sensuifu View Post
              Curious if the 'reminiscence' episodes will involve her some manner. Might not, as that would essentially make them 'new', but it would be interesting if she really does have some kind of role (off screen, or through Ai's thoughts).
              Yeah, I have been quite curious if there's going to be any significance to them besides filling the time slot.

              Comment


              • #8
                Episode 3

                The Hell Girl franchise is chock full of really screwed up families, but I think they tried to one up them all this episode with just how much there is spread about the whole big family. You could tell things were going to be really bad from the beginning here, and the shittiest person in this extended family wasn't even at the initial dinner table! Even the suffering younger ones had already gotten to have a number of screws loose. Akira selfishly thinks he can set up some strangers to go to hell for him for taking out most of his family. Though he eventually gets to really wanting it for Yoshinori, he still dithers. And with Hell Girl, you know something extremely awful is going to happen when they dither... The signs of what was going to happen to Arina were there already. Ai's punishment seemed comparatively too lenient this time. And Akira (with the dude who was bullied at school) ends up in just as depraved a state as the rest of the family as he ends up being one of the clients who figure they can live without worry of consequence due to their ultimate fate being set.

                Next episode, it looks like there will be

                Spoiler ->a familiar returning face. I'm definitely curious what we will get of her role this time.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Episode 3

                  I admit, I got a few laughs from the first half due to the absurdity. But then the absurdity turned really ugly, to the point I wasn't laughing anymore. This has to be the most wtf episodes of the entire franchise. Even with the crappy animation and Arina's wonky voice, it was still disgustingly disturbing. "That family is more hellish than Hell itself"....couldn't be any further from the truth, Wanyuudou. I knew Akira was already fucked-up mentally as well the moment he tried to use the strangers to do his bidding. And the ending confirms just how demonic and hellbound he really is, just like the whole family.

                  There was so much time focused on the damning incidents of each family member, Ai's punishment was really shortchanged, I agree. I think the direction could've done without the initial introductions, since the characters wrote themselves. Then that remaining time difference could've left Ai to give a more fitting punishment than the silliness (which ironically is what I thought of the first half) we got.

                  So to summarize how messed up this episode really was:
                  -mental disorders that meet an entire range of criteria for institutionalization
                  -rape
                  -incest
                  -bullying
                  -murder
                  -adultery
                  -neglect
                  -child endangerment
                  -elder abuse
                  -child abuse
                  -mutilation
                  -no mandated reporting
                  -bribery
                  -kidnapping/imprisonment

                  and the list goes on even longer if I were to nitpick more than I already have. :D

                  Definitely a Hell Girl episode that's now burned into memory, as pathetic and sad it really is. Kind of disappointing the art/animation took a huge nose dive.


                  Last edited by Sensuifu; 07-29-2017, 05:18 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Episode 4

                    Originally posted by Sensuifu View Post
                    -elder abuse
                    That again with this episode, and it's rather sickening. Sakura is more "right" than she initially thought in her choice of target. The director wasn't just turning a blind eye to abuses, but also got to show she was rather brutal in how she dealt with word of them getting out. It was nice to see some young workers really cared, and one was desperate enough to try and get it out while news cameras were rolling (figured something was going to go down while they were coming).

                    Ah, and among those young workers, we have the sweet Tsugumi. Not too much of her connection to Hell Girl this time, though it's definitely called out. Poor Tsugumi... trying to make up for so many people having suffered and died around her, and she still finds herself in the midst of a saddening situation with not much she can do about it. Got to hear her theme music from Three Vessels in there (and a few other memorable pieces from that season playing this episode too: it's interesting again to have some pieces related to Yuzuki played here completely unrelated to her).

                    Heh, and Wanyuudou gets hit on. So cute. He's such a gentleman too. That part was kind of sweet too, but unfortunately it came to a bit of an abrupt end (as always tends to happen when Ai's companions get this emotionally invested).

                    Next episode it seems we will

                    Spoiler ->definitely be getting at least some focus on Michiru finally.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Episode 4

                      This is depressing. Sakura probably lived a righteous life up until she was stuck dealing with this nursing home, then throws it all away with what little life she has left. Her martyrdom in order to (hopefully) stop the abuse might've been prevented had she e-mailed other authorities. I'm curious how Japan operates these types of facilities; because if they're under the scrutiny of something like the Department of Health, they'd be shut down that instant.

                      Sad to see how these kinds of abuse go unnoticed, but for the ownership to actually condone such crimes is definitely sickening. I don't know, and it might just be me; but this season seems to be really damn depressing compared to the other scenarios from the previous seasons. Maybe the others were more trivial and the incidents now are more believable?

                      Though there's an interesting running theme from most of these season I've noticed...almost all the episodes so far, except the first involve some kind of mental health issue. 2nd ep: split personality and schizophrenia. 3rd: practically everything you can think of, and now this episode- mci/dementia. Or, actually, maybe the first did have some related matter- inferiority complex and some paranoia.

                      Looking forward to see what will develop for Michiru; but it doesn't seem like she's had a happy life (though unsurprising for the series.. )

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Episode 5

                        Was looking like this episodic story would parallel Michiru's actual story, and sure enough... brats getting themselves killed through complete idiocy, and their parents in turn just become even more unreasonable monsters in defense of their perfect angel children (in the present day story, at least, we get a rare occurrence of someone actually letting go of the doll before an innocent person is yet again condemned to hell). That they got in accident with Satoshi's dad driving kind of made me think of what happened which led to Yuzuki's ostracism. Actually was on to something there, as getting back to Michiru's story (I could tell from her clothes that it was probably going to be something well in the past: this seems like it may be post-war), the shades of Ai and Yuzuki are particularly strong. Not surprising to end up seeing that we have the latest Hell Girl candidate on hand considering that kind of backstory. Her mom had though they were going to be innocent and bound for heaven. Obviously something went wrong for Michiru to be appearing like she has at all. She did exact vengeance in a manner reminiscent of Ai herself, and she had forgotten. Going to be interesting to see what comes of Michiru's situation. Is Ai actually going to pass on her job this time?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Episode 5
                          Originally posted by EmperorBrandon View Post

                          Is Ai actually going to pass on her job this time?
                          Michiru needs to atone for her hatred/curse, but that could probably be done without her serving as Hell Girl (even though similar circumstances fell on Ai). One thing that seems different from Ai's past is how Michiru seems more inclined to refuse sending innocent people to Hell, whereas Ai did have that conscience as well, but not as frequently, nor as emotionally. In that regard, Ai is seemingly less biased toward serving a sentence, while Michiru seems more reluctant in doing it just because it's 'her job'. I think her conscientious objection is more on the ethical side, while Ai's isn't tied too much through emotion. Should be interesting to what decision she makes though, so anything could happen.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Episode 6

                            I was getting the feeling that Michiru would ultimately take on the job, else it would just in some ways be a rehash of the third season. There wasn't really any way for Ai to "save" her in this case, and actually it gets to feeling the other way around. Ai is finally set free. Michiru can do the task of Hell Girl, but in a personality style rather different from Ai. And with her, there is the focus on heaven, that which is unattainable for most people whose stories are told in this series. In serving her penance, Michiru believes she will reach there eventually. Ai does not know of "heaven" at all, but likes the sound of it... Interesting how there may have been some intended prescience in the the April Fool's joke they did before the show started.

                            Even as much of an irredeemably devious brat she may be, I did feel a little bit sorry for Kikuri. In her mind, she actually did end up getting dumped by Yamawaro for another girl. It was pretty amusing how she was harping over it the previous episode, and it comes to this... I do wonder what comes of Ai's other companions who are not(?) moving on to work with the Hell Girl.

                            The "reminiscence" episodes are up next. I do wonder if these will just be the old episodes played straight to fill space, or if there's something extra they're doing with them. I'm assuming nothing special with them for now. In either case, it may be up in the air if they're even officially streamed (will be curious about that too).

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Episode 6

                              So Michiru does commit to taking the role of Hell Girl. It's interesting how she's basically following the same path as Ai, but I suppose there wasn't really a choice given that 'fate' had destined her that outcome. I miss Mamiko Noto's "Ippen shinde miru?" already. btw, I can't remember if this is the first time we've seen someone 'pre-cursed' with the mark before any Hell Girl damnation was made.



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