Surprisingly Complex: M.S.S.S Episode 3
Wow... Just... Wow... This is the first episode where what I've said in this blog is actually addressed in the series. The end of Nisemonogatari doesn't really count, as it only gives us the basis of the idea, where as here, it was said loud and clear: Hanekawa's deliberate attempt to be real makes her more unreal, but that in term makes her better than the real thing. Not sure about loud and clear, but Senjougahara's speech in the beginning is really at the heart of the philosophy of Nisemonogatari.
Maybe the thing that I wanted to say was that I'm supremely pleased that what they did with the character of Hanekawa trying to be real was 100% the same as what I was thinking. I hope that this episode would get people to think about things. Anyway, the rest of the episode is also great, seeing Shinobu and the Cat interact was interesting and they confirmed another thing, that was actually cooking up from the beginning of the very first season: It's not that the thing itself is different, only the point of view has changed. The allegory of Hanekawa and the Cat being two sides of the same coin has surprisingly lot impact. It is as much implying that they are one and same as it is implying that the only thing that is between them is just a slight change in the point of view. Now you see Hanekawa, now you see the Cat.
Hair. As the fastest probably already noticed, Kanbaru's and Tsukihi's hairs have grown again, in the matter of few weeks, a ton. There is a reason to it, want to know what? Try to guess. 1... 2... 3... 4... 5... Ready? It's the apparitions. Tsukihi's apparition makes everything regenerate fast, including her hair, where as Kanbaru's monkey hand probably makes her hair grow faster. Yes, probably in every place in her body, she just shaves a lot.
Also, there was one scene where Hanekawa wasn't present, the scene between Senjougahara and Karen. The two acted so like themselves that I'd speculate that Hanekawa didn't hear what we saw, she just speculated that that was what happened when she saw Karen and Tsukihi. In reality Senjougahara probably just asked them. We're just led to believe it was something else.
Speculation about the tiger coming. It's not a big surprise the Tiger is probably the one burning everything down. Make it Araragi and we have an ingenious twist! But the Tiger is most probably the one burning everything. The fire is probably an allegory for purification, which may turn into a different one where it actually becomes a baptism by fire, where Hanekawa has to face the Tiger head on, by herself, without the Cat. That would make something interesting. The purpose of the Fire is to purify, but why it is targeting Hanekawa, it's still a bit of mystery. It probably has something to do with her fake pureness or something. Have to wait for more. Until next week!
META-REDUX: The whole series
I just understood one thing about the series. Shinobu and her brilliant character development. She hasn't actually developed based on her actions, but she has actually developed from Araragi's. The Shinobu we see in this episode is so very different from who we see in either Nekomonogatari or the beginning of Bakemonogatari. The first time we see her in Bake, Araragi has this very mean way of talking of her. "She is nothing, she has no shadow or form." And she acts the part. Why? Because her link to Araragi is strong and if he sees her as nothing, she acts like she is nothing, and she looks very sorry about it, because Araragi makes her seem like that. The reason for this way of action is because she was not really helpful in Nekomonogatari, and gave up the blade only after Araragi begged for days, and even though she helped him in the end, he's not grateful because it's not too long from the events of Kizumonogatari, which the series has explained as something that either Shinobu or Araragi can never forgive each other for.
The real development happened during the end of Bake and the beginning of Nise. I told you the bath scene was important, and it was the very reason Shinobu is like how she is now. Before that, during the return of the Cat we saw Shinobu help Araragi again, which led Araragi to trust Shinobu more, which in turn got her to talk more, and during the bath scene Araragi and Shinobu made a pact of peace and got some level of understanding between each other. This in turn makes this episode all the more meaningful. It would seem that Araragi has become more than just a pool of blood for Shinobu to feed on, and more like an ally, and even when their connection is severed, Shinobu still cares for some part for her "master."
The things I ramble about, finally addressed in the series! WOOOOOOOOOOOO!