Episode 07 – “The End of the Exodus”
I didn’t think this series could get any more directionally confusing than it already has been, but I never expected it to pull anything like this. This may very well be the most awkward way a main character has been killed off that I have ever seen. There wasn’t exactly that much build-up, aside from the last episode focusing on Ayumi being sick, so we never got a sense as of Ayumi importance to story and to Yuu outside of her penchant for using pizza sauce in everything.
We don’t even get that much exploration for what her death means for the series. After a brief funeral scene and a relatively small emotional breakdown by Yuu, the rest of the episode is devoted to Yuu’s almost self-destructive, violent mental unraveling. In this way, these two events end up feeling disconnected, not only from each other, but from the entire series itself. What evidence have we seen so far that would suggest that Ayumi should die or that her death would be impactful? Usually when a main character dies, the natural reaction would “Ah hah! I totally called it!” or “Oh no! Why didn’t I see this coming?” Instead, this turn of events creates this weird, nebulous feeling of being totally dissociating from everything, lacking any tangible ties to the main narrative.
Throughout the episode’s duration, I kept thinking that Ayumi’s death and Yuu’s subsequent reaction would be part of some sort of illusion, but this hope did not come to fruition. If it had, I could have excused the uncouth direction the series seemed to be turning, but no, as far as we know, Ayumi is dead for real. Perhaps the real kicker is that Yuu’s ordeal resolves with him simply returning to the school’s student council at Nao’s request – no reflection about Ayumi, what she meant to him, or what her death means for the story.
While I’ve complained about how predictable the series was in the beginning, this is unpredictable to the point of being poorly thought-out. I never want to fault the creators because I don’t know what went into making this series, but I am at a loss as to what it is trying to accomplish at this point. The next episode is basically do or die, in terms of any sort of sensible story progression.
“So that was… the last omelet rice…” ~ Yuu Otosaka