The… blood… hits the fan.
Well, or the doctor.
Ozaki finally lost his shit this week, experimenting upon his risen wife and finally pounding a stake through her heart in his attempts to learn more about the shiki. In a show that has been fairly consistently creepy since about episode four or so, this episode was downright horrific. Ozaki’s wife, Kyouko, is terrified as her husband cuts into her, injects her with various drugs and chemicals, and then finally stakes her. It was one of the most uncomfortable things I’ve watched in a while. It is also suggested to us that Ozaki did actually love his wife… right before he straps her down and whips out the surgical tools. The brutality was all the more jarring since Shiki, despite drowning in bodies, has been a show with almost no violence at all.
And guess who ends up walking in after Ozaki’s done this? Duh, Muroi. And Muroi is completely horrified. Ozaki merely turns to him, his face and clothes smeared with blood, and remarks that he’s shown up in a pretty timely fashion, as he can now help with the clean up.
Meanwhile, there’s some suggestion floating about that Natsuno might be dead. However, there’s been no confirmation, so I’m not going to count him out quite yet, especially since he is shown in the ED animation. It would’ve been very easy to have an ED in which his absence wouldn’t be noticed (the first ED just showed Sunako just walking around, after all). On the other hand, it could just be obfuscation. I have yet to be convinced, though, even though Megumi was told that since Natsuno came from the city he was probably cremated. I anticipate that we may see Megumi hunting around for Natsuno in the next episode, although the Hulu stream doesn’t show the next episode preview. I was actually a bit surprised she hadn’t started trending that way in the episode itself.
Speaking of Megumi, I loved watching her smack Masao around. Geez. Masao is so fucking annoying. I dislike him so strongly that I was even willing to overlook the fact that the slapstick-ish nature of her beating up of him was pretty out of step with what this show has been thus far.
And, speaking of Masao, we also learned that apparently there are shiki who are incapable of hunting independently and must be provided for by other of the vampires. There are hunts conducted in the city to snatch away people to feed folks like Masao with. This is an interesting tidbit, as I would’ve assumed that shiki who couldn’t hunt would just get purged by Tatsumi. After all, what use is a vampire who can’t/won’t hunt?
Kaori and Akira’s dad died, and a member of the presumed-vampire clinic showed up to take a look at him. Congrats! Your house is now officially unsafe, kiddies. P.S. Megumi hates your guts, Kaori. Have fun!
Before happening upon Ozaki’s room of horror, Muroi thinks about how when he was a kid he told Ozaki that they didn’t just exist to carry on their family lines and business, and reflects on how it was a lot more complicated than that after all. The upshot is that he doesn’t want to disappoint the villagers by leaving, thus ensuring that he is doomed! Of course, an acceptance of doom by a suicidal man isn’t exactly, um, earth-shattering.
Although Ozaki’s experiments upon his wife are pretty stomach-churning, we do learn that shiki can be warded off with religious artifacts. They will also die if you stab them in the heart. Ozaki guesses that cutting off their heads should work, too, although simply destroying their brain won’t (he sticks a huge needle in Kyouko’s ear and rattles it around her skull to check that one out). He doesn’t try fire at all, which, honestly is the first thing I’d probably have opted for.
So, important points to take away from the episode:
- shiki are scared of religious objects, and can be killed by having their hearts destroyed
- Natsuno’s fate is still unclear, as he may or may not have been cremated
- Ozaki’s completely lost his shit
- not all shiki are capable of hunting for themselves
- Mrs. Kirishiki is Lady Gaga:
I look forward to next week and seeing more of Muroi’s reaction to Ozaki’s dissection of Kyouko. I’m hoping that we get some intense angst in the form of Muroi remaining totally repulsed but helping Ozaki deal with the mess anyway and then trying to keep it hushed up. The other option being that the pair are driven even further apart.
Speaking of Muroi, I also would still really like some more backstory on him. Like, oh, I dunno, why he tried to kill himself once. At the same time, I don’t think that that is a direction Shiki is interested in exploring, given the fact that the characters in general have gotten very little development in terms of history at all. Natsuno is the closest we’ve gotten, with his rant about his hippie-dippie parents and how they had him in college and were all counter-cultural in the way they went about everything.
I will close in mentioning that one of the nurse’s disappeared this week. We haven’t had very much of this type of death of villagers – Natsuno’s mum “ran” off, and Ikumi presumably was killed when she was lured away by a shiki claiming her family was being attacked. This, in fact, is the first time someone’s commented upon a person simply vanishing (other than the families moving out suddenly – but all together, which doesn’t look as suspicious and doesn’t leave anyone from the family to call up others looking for the missing family member). I’m thinking this is when the vampires start to pull this sort of thing to entertain themselves – not only are the villagers going to be their food, but they’re going to be their entertainment, too. Puts a whole new spin on the concept of dinner theater.
EDIT: Ok, I went onto the website for Shiki and found they’d already posted the next episode preview. Natsuno shows up undead in it, and it seems that Muroi walks out on Ozaki after finding him in the operating room. Ozaki looks like he is going to get a bit introspective about his wife. It also looks like Muroi is going to try to kill himself again. My prediction is that Ozaki intervenes. And we may actually get some back-story, after all! I am now officially in freak-out mode until episode fifteen airs next week.
EDIT #2: Can you hear that sound? That’s the sound of my inner BL fan finally grinding its gears into action for a fanfic! Maybe! More likely now than ever! Oh, and I watched Kuragehime after I watched this to get the creeps out of my system. I will now follow that up with watching… The Mist. Since apparently Kuragehime washed all the creepiness out of my system so thoroughly that I need to re-inject them RIGHT BEFORE I turn the lights off to go to sleep.