“The Ladies’ Man Has Neither Money Nor Power” 「色男、金と力はなかりけり」
Ahhh, this episode. Probably one of my favourites so far, what with all the jaw-dropping revelations.
The main things we learn are that little Akane was told by none other than Izaya about how Shizu-chan was a thug intending to murder her. While Tom and Shinra await the fallout, though, Shizu-chan shows his rather frighteningly chipper side and tells sweet Akane that it was all just a misunderstanding and that he has no intention of murdering her or anyone else. He even winks, which is more than either Tom or Shinra can take, but it makes Akane happy, so that’s good. On the other hand, Shizu-chan’s now on a warpath that leads directly to Izaya, who is rather unsurprisingly missing. Unfortunately that leads Shizuo directly into a trap where he opens a room full of dead members from Chikage’s group, just as another member walks in, catching him in a rather precarious position. So basically, Shizuo’s been framed. Like, again.
The other plotline is Chikage, who was on the lookout for the Dollars because of what’s clearly a misunderstanding – but no one knows that yet – finally gets to confront Kadota, who’s one heck of a badass when it comes to these sort of things. He’s utterly stoic in the face of Chikage’s threats and I think there’s some sort of mutual respect in spite of the animosity and the need to protect their own people, so that was an interesting standoff, even if nothing really got resolved. Nevertheless there’s unfinished business between these guys and the unlikeliest – or perhaps the most likely – guy is in the middle of this and he has the biggest choice to make.
SO. Onto the most dramatic plot of the day. Mikado and Aoba’s meeting. Holy. Cow. I did NOT expect it to go where it went at all but it did and can anyone say mind blown? Because Aoba has just dropped a huge bombshell on Mikado, saying that it was him and his group of kids going around attacking the Saitama – i.e. Chikage’s – gang under the guise of the Dollars. And guess who they are? None other than the Blue Squares. And they’ve got poor defenseless Mikado in a warehouse somewhere – possibly the same one where the Blue Squares, Yellow Scarves and the Dollars had their huge fight in the first season – and you’d think this was all a threat but it isn’t only Aoba who’s having all the fun. Because as he points out quite smugly, Mikado’s smiling at the situation he’s in, and I think it’s that sort of dark recklessness that gets Aoba asking Mikado to become the new leader of the Blue Squares. And I mean what?
So that happened, all right. And it was insane because now Chikage’s group have found said warehouse and Mikado has a decision on whether or not to take Aoba up on his offer. I mean of all people to choose to be the leader of the Blue Squares, Mikado isn’t exactly top of the list. But to Aoba he is and I really want to know why.
I adore Mikado because he’s one of those flail-y and unassuming characters but they’re showing something inside of him that gets excited by danger and by the crazy things around him, which is very different from how he was in the first season. It takes some skill to create a colourless, anonymous gang like the Dollars but there’s clearly something emerging from him that could potentially make him a pretty dangerous guy. As naïve as he is – stupid sometimes, especially in the people he trusts – I think there’s something of an Izaya inside of him and it makes me really excited.