“Cover her face; mine eyes dazzle; she died young.”
So, I’m a few days behind schedule here – what can I say? Life got in the way.
…ok, so maybe writing porn did, too.
So, as has been the case with previous chapters, in these chapters, too, the main difference between the anime and the manga is that the manga is fleshing the characters a lot more. We got that Ozaki didn’t like his dad much in the anime, but he goes into more detail here as to why, and we also learn how exactly he ended up returning to Sotoba and taking over the clinic. Dear old dad had cancer… gee, maybe you should give up the smoking, Ozaki? Joking aside, Ozaki’s dislike of his father is just a lot more visceral, in part since we get this moment where he seems to sort of hallucinate that his father is leaning forth from his photograph to admonish him.
Speaking of the Ozaki family, it’d be remiss to not mention that Mrs. Ozaki comes off even worse here than in the anime. She tells Ozaki that he should start turning away patients because she doesn’t want him to get sick and die since that’ll nix the family line. Pleasant woman. She also hates Muroi, which didn’t come as much of a shock! Ritsuko tells her sister this, but Mrs. Ozaki is also shown glaring through the window when her son is talking to the priest. This explains why Muroi won’t go into the clinic. I probably wouldn’t either; that woman is scary.
Ozaki seems a lot harsher here when he flips out and yells at Muroi for gathering statistics on people who have left town instead of just focusing on people who are sick or who have died. However, his apology also seems more heartfelt.
Ozaki and Muroi hash over the whole vampire thing a bit, with Muroi talking about the book he’s writing, Shiki. We get a LOT more detail here about his book, and I enjoyed the opportunity to parse it more than I did when watching the anime. The relation between Muroi and the characters of his story seem a lot more obvious here – a heretic who lives on a hill and feels isolated from other people? HMM WONDER WHO THAT COULD BE.
Muroi’s potential issues with harming the shiki have already popped up, as he reacts negatively to the idea of Ozaki autopsying one.
“Autopsy?! Hold on a sec! If they really have turned into vampires… and apart from sucking blood, their thoughts are still the same as from when they were alive…”
And then the vamps attack!
And would a post ever be complete without mentioning Sunako? She’s still 80% creepier than her anime incarnation. She also comes across as more adult earlier on, perhaps partially due to the creepiness she possesses; patting Muroi on the head comfortingly probably helps further this impression as well. Where in the anime her comment to Muroi about his and Ozaki’s feelings passing each other by seemed somehow regretful, here the ominous tone to it is more striking. She still seems a bit saddened by it, but there’s something sinister to it as well.
Sunako does appear to truly feel for her would-be victims, though. Its the early sign that she perhaps isn’t entirely too thrilled with her own fate and state of being.
While Masao sucks a lot and all that jazz, the circumstances of his death are, nevertheless, fairly sad. He still sickens and dies alone, his family too busy with his nephew to notice that their youngest son hasn’t surfaced in a while. He’s such an unpleasant character, but that’s still very sad. How did Masao get to be so weird and nasty, anyway? The rest of his family seems pretty decent. Perhaps in Masao we see another aspect to the argument by Ono (the original author of Shiki) that people are just naturally unpleasant, nurture be damned. Masao just happens to be one of the few people who is that way before all hell breaks loose in Sotoba.
Oh, and Kyouko channels the Glittering Crux:
Why does Kyouko return to Sotoba even if she knew her mother-in-law was lying? While she seems to get along with Ozaki fine, she doesn’t seem particularly enamored of him nor he of her (Ozaki even tells her that there’s no reason for her to stay). Also, staying in Sotoba means she must contend with Mrs. Ozaki. She does appear to enjoy getting on Mrs. Ozaki’s nerves, but I can’t see that really being enough to stay for a protracted visit. I’m hoping we’ll get more of an explanation, since otherwise it just seems too convenient!
Now, while I was late on posting, Caraniel’s post actually went up on time! She has some great stuff about Muroi’s personal motivations on there that I didn’t bother to go in to. In other news, I am convinced that the manga is more fertile ground for slashing Muroi with Ozaki >=D