Saturday, October 15, 2016

10 Second Anime - Bungou Stray Dogs - Episode 14

Oda and Dazai track down the missing Ango, but Ango's mission complicates matters.

Episode 14 - "Nowhere to Return"


Judging from the recycled scenes from the first episode inserted into the opening credit sequence, I don't think we'll be spending that much time with Oda and Ango's story.

Well, they'll always have Lupin's.

The episode was much more linear than the introductory season opener, but we still had time to flesh out Oda's character.

He's been taking care of some orphans from a gang war incident called the Ryuuzu dispute. This happened two years ago from the flashback's timeline, and it appears to be the key to circumstances playing out at this moment.

In the aftermath of that incident, Oda and Dazai met Ango, who was cataloguing all the effects of the dead gangsters so the police couldn't trace any of it back to the Port Mafia. Ougai the Boss was against the paper trail, at first, just like Dazai's instincts against the ledger. But Ango persuaded the Boss that any info could be valuable, especially from the enemy's dead.

Dazai, from the flashback we saw in the last season with Akutagawa, really was not impressed with him as he was coming up in the mafia's ranks. Seeing Akutagawa get punched in the face is all kinds of satisfying.

Dazai figured Akutagawa was the dumb kind of student who needed sink-or-swim methods. Can't use your ability for defense? Let me shoot you and see.

Also, Dazai was clearly not as happy-go-lucky four years ago than he is now with the Armed Detective Agency.

The scene where all three became friends because they recognized their respective quirks at odds with the rest of the Mafioso was fun to see. Dazai is suicidal. Oda chooses not to kill anyone. Ango keeps evidence instead of disposing of it. Somehow, being a little different let them rise to the top of their respective ranks of executive, enforcer and accountant.

Dazai made a point to brag for Oda's abilities and warn his men to be careful.

The cliffhanger at the end was that Ango seemingly betrayed Oda. Some uncertainties here: did Ango poison Oda himself, or did someone else who knew about the limits of his 6 second prescience do that? The poison seems to point to the name of Ango's power - Discourse on Decadence. Were the men he ran off to join with Mimic or the Port Mafia? Either way, disposing of Oda to protect either an agent or double agent makes sense.

I think the Boss sent Oda to find Ango to measure Ango's loyalty to the infiltration mission. When the robberies Mimic committed used Ango's secret codes, something had to be done. Perhaps that's a clue to the Mimic Leader's ability in "making his men fight."

The ominous foreshadowing of the power the leader of Mimic uses ratchets up the tension. Is this the last we'll see of Oda? We'll have to find out next time.

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