Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai, Episode 13 : Analysis, Thoughts, and Random Comments

[Disclaimer]: This entry might contain MILD spoilers. However, while the analysis might push you to these mild spoilers, NO foretelling spoiler is present. Therefore, please follow the same guideline, and understand that any spoiler can just ruin this critical part of the story for any reader. (NO spoiler will be tolerated. Any borderline hint either. Don’t even try to test me, instant edit/delete might fall without your permission. You have been WARNED). Good reading!
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This is it. It is the final episode of Minagoroshi-hen. You think you have every answers? Possible. I still believe many things can be elaborated.
We don’t have all the answers, but it is now enough to determine the “why” huh? The how, for either the reasons and the resolution will be answered soon with Matsuribayashi-hen.
Well, shall we start?
Minagoroshi-hen Analyses List: [Meiro no Housoku], [Unmei no Kaekata], [Yuragi], [Koushou], [Taiketsu], [Tsuyoi Ishi], [Hinamizawa Shoukougun]

Be sure to have watched the episode before reading this!

Today, I will focus mainly on the following points:

  1. Rika and Frederica
  2. Hanyuu
  3. “I’m Oyashiro-sama”
  4. Comparison: anime VS games

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[Analysis]

I. Rika and Frederica

Rika get through a hellish and desperate battle against fate and Takano. However, things didn’t make her sulking. She is fighting to the very end.
Now, how is that?
Just because of her friends? Yes and no, considering her own resolve. Rika, even through she saw her friends dying after such struggle, didn’t break and even get through such extent to bear the pain of being gutted alive and conscious.
That is a sharp difference with her fighting spirit when she was going to save Satoko from Teppei, as she claimed it will be the last “try again”.

However, their struggle perfectly shows they can do it on their own, and they don’t have to stick on miracles.
It has NOTHING to do with “Now I know that Takano is the culprit!”
Rika destroyed her own crippling belief that fate is immovable. In fact she was able to bypass the thought that fate is solid or a reality. “You can beat fate by yourself”, that’s what Keiichi taught her, that’s why she decides to follow his request about not using this word lightly.

In this perspective, Rika had her own huge character development, as she doesn’t sulk anymore in her helpless attitude. She is finally able to fight to the very end, as nothing is set in stone and she finally found what is truly important.
That is why Rika decides to not run away, even though Satoko and herself were in a pinch. She doesn’t want to play the “scenario of fate” anymore and she acts with her own decisions instead of referring to her other failures, restraining herself in her actions.

Now, what was her “sudden shift” of decision in the “worlds space”?
Basically, “this Rika” isn’t exactly Furude Rika.
This one is who we can call “Frederica Bernkastel”, the one who lurks in this space and writes these enigmatic poems.
Now, what is the deal? Basically, Frederica is the one observing the worlds and is in fact the collected consciousness of all Furude Rika who has ever existed in the worlds. It will be a bit hard to explain, and I’m not really that confident. Nevertherless, I will do my best.

Remember what I said before in the “time jump”? Rika and Hanyuu don’t reset the time as proved in this episode. They get through another world, with another time available.
That said, as I explained before, Frederica doesn’t take place of Rika, but “merges” with Furude Rika (the “destination” Rika) to gives who we know now.
That’s why Frederica isn’t exactly the one acting in each world. It is more like the true Furude Rika, having everything from the past, with the somewhat same vision of Frederica, considering they have the same origin.
As for the big difference in mindset: Rika (the one we know) is in fray and can feel the changes. This is boosted with the “true Rika” from this body (normal, since both “personalities” or “souls” have merged).
However, Frederica Bernkastel is in the “worlds space” observing everything, collecting the consciousness. In that regard, she is a nihilist considering her own view as an observer. Even through the “last Rika” changed completely the mindset about Fate, Frederica is still NOT Rika, as shown in this message.
Thus, Frederica Bernkastel isn’t that concerned about the issues, and also she has more and more difficulties to “act as Rika”.
In Minagoroshi-hen, the game, Rika’s mind is exhausted due the loop. Despite Rika is still a child, her mind is beyond reasonable “age”, and as result, becomes less and less sensible to her own life. Rika had to think herself as “Furude Rika”, because her own perception becomes faded, as Rika get less and less “surprises” with her life, and thus reducing her own feelings. This is summaried with her own metaphor: “It is like a videotape you are forced to watch over, over and over again. Even if you know EACH frame of the movie, you must watch until you sleep” which the last part obviously means death.

Thus, the collected consciousness, Frederica Bernkastel, is an entity beyond a simple little girl named Furude Rika. Concept of living and such can’t be really applied on her considering her vision (as her view is set beyond one only world). If you add the fact she wasn’t in the struggle, her observations lead to such “pessimist conclusion”, despite she got the memories of “Everyone has fought well”. This is somewhat similar to Hanyuu. Frederica believes it is useless to go on because it failed despite everyone helped. In that aspect, if she travels in another with this mindset, the “Furude Rika” will be probably affected as well. However, Rena and the rest proved that’s not true, and Hanyuu can help as well… which leads to her own thoughts.

 

II. Hanyuu

Hanyuu is weak, childish, curious, etc. In short, your “cliché” cute and clumsy character. However, it isn’t anything that simple to conclude.

Hanyuu is Oyashiro-sama, the deity of Hinamizawa. She witnessed many atrocities done “under her name”, which deeply sadden her.
Unfortunately she isn’t able to interact anyone, until Rika was born.

You can tell Hanyuu could finally broke her loneliness and could finally have a companion. Both become friends naturally.
Unfortunately, the tragedy ocurred in 1983, without they could even expect this. In that regard, Hanyuu was “selfish” as she wanted reset everything so they can enjoy their happiness, nothing more.
I would suggest you to read the TIPS about Hanyuu, [I and I].

Unfortunately for them, the tragedy still occur, and after much attempts, they finally discover the “fate” of 1983 by themselves. Due the experience, they obviously know something is wrong and premeditate.

Now, with Hanyuu: her problem is that she can’t do anything. Despite being a goddess, she can’t act anything except for the loop. Thus, Hanyuu grew quickly and easily pessimist, as the tragedies are repeating over and over again.
Unlike Frederica, Hanyuu is STRICTLY an observer and doesn’t act, or rather CAN’T act. While Frederica is nihilist but still tries to solve things on a whim/gamble, Hanyuu is observing helplessly the tragedies. Since she isn’t even concerned in the fight, she bears sorrow by witnessing the hell for Rika but also everyone else.
Hanyuu doesn’t limit herself with Rika, but she also loves everyone, considering them as friends, though they didn’t know about her until the end of Minagoroshi-hen.
Not only she had to bear the atrocities, but she had to help “indirectly” Rika, without any much solid assistance. She is a watcher and a “try again” machine, but that’s it. If you add the fact she witnessed Rika’s gradual jading evolution, you can tell her worries and usual “it is no good” behaviour are normal.

Hanyuu has also a complex about being “abnormal”: she truely believes she can’t be with them, because she is a monster (abnormal, horns, etc). That’s another of her internal conflict, which leads her to a pessimist view of her true usefulness. But that is clearly not something any of the club members would mind (you bet Rena would already omochikaeri-ing Hanyuu already).

That’s why Hanyuu feels guilty. She is a surnatural being, yet she can’t do anything.
She might even bear the guilt as she is indirectly giving Rika so much hardship, since she is the one who “reset” the world. In a sense, without the actual context and Rika’s opinion, one might think Hanyuu is cruel to make Rika repeating this hell for a century.
In my reasoning, I believe Hanyuu still think she is selfish and useless, because she is mainly trying to make everyone happy, but with a major part of her own benefit, since she didn’t have any companion until now etc.
Of course, considering Rika’s will, everything above is false. However, Hanyuu is weak and struck by her sorrow and guilt, leading to such mindset.

This is why Rena and everyone else intervene: Hanyuu is NOT useless, as she is not only someone who permits “attempts” to defeat fate, but she is also a companion.
Much like Rika, Hanyuu has the potential to help, even if it is a little. We still don’t know the full reasons OR restrictions why Hanyuu couldn’t fly everywhere to give information, hints etc.
Still, even if she can’t act directly, her interventions and will can add weight in the balance of power, and therefore realizing the miracle everyone wholeheartedely tried to create by themselves.

Remember what Rika said before “last retry” ? She said “if everyone isn’t giving their best efforts, the miracle won’t happen”. Rika was crippled in her own pessimism and thus, leading into an “observer” state while she COULD act.
That’s actually valid for Hanyuu as well. Considering Hanyuu has been invited and clearly aknowledged as a dear friend/comrade (breaking her self image of “monster”), chances she will do something are high for Matsuribayashi-hen !

 

III. “I’m Oyashiro-sama”

Takano basically revealed what she had in mind: Being a god.
Such foolishness is rather odd, as “being some transcending humanity” is a concept rather obscure and peculiar.
Yes, one might think almighty after a great deed, whatever it is good or evil.

Considering her own claim, it is fairly safe to say that the TIPS, the letter [To *yoko] was destined to Takano.
From there, we can speculate that either Miyo isn’t her true first name (thus might affect “Takano” surname as well), or *yoko is another alias or nickname.

That random thing aside, the most important part is the content of this letter.

The writer who is Takano’s grandfather announces such things:

  1. He commits suicide
  2. He was a scientist, but his research was not taken seriously, as it was forgotten when he was alive
  3. He is bitter that he couldn’t achieve something great
  4. He passes this wish to Takano

Now, the dangerous parts of this letter are 2 sentences:

  1. I don’t care in which field you go into
  2. I want you to become a god

Basically, the first sentence declares that whatever you do, it is FINE. Thus, as long as you accomplished your end, the means are justified.
Becoming a god is something which gives you a surnatural status, something giving you a clear “superior” image from mere humans. It isn’t anything like “being a demon” for the “superior onigafuchi villager”, but clearly: My name is in history.
In such case, it migh look like any “hero” or “villain” of humanity, transcending their own life, as their names are aknowledged even after their death. This concept is used in Fate/Stay Night, where Heroic Spirits can be fictional, since they transcended death, because humanity aknowledge their name for the eternity.
I would suggest you to read the final 2 TIPS of Minagoroshi-hen: [The forward of a faded book] and[Faded notebook II & III]

Why I said “villain” as well? Well, if I say Hitler, I believe you know what i’m talking about?
Even the worst individual, even leaving a huge scar on history, can be “transcended” in such way.

This is probably the reason why Takano made the massacre.
What is the thing humanity retains in memories the most? Inventions? heroes?
No.
Massacres, Genocides, Wars.
Humans are such beings who can be easely be driven in bloodshed and many conflicts, even if they didn’t intend to deal any harm beforehand. In that regard, Takano probably made the “best” choice, as even being officially dead, she led to such carnage, being a “prophet” for the disaster for those who didn’t know about it (i.e: Akasaka and Ooishi in Reunion). And for the governement, they shall have to recognize this matter, even though they can’t cover the blunder completely.

Now, remember what I said before? The queen carrier theory is FALSE. Killing Rika won’t lead to a bloodcraze situation where the villagers go in L5, killing each other.
Considering how Takano was so delighted by the carnage, there is only one thing to conclude: Takano probably made this theory so she CAN kill the villagers, and thus giving her the status of “god”. The cause became an excuse then.
Takano obviously needs to create a situation where the governement is forced to give her the autorisation. And in this case, a dangerous and hazardous disease which can lead chaos and death is very accurate.
Of course, the disease exists well, but she completely “masters” it, for her own agenda.

 

In that part, it makes sense why she couldn’t activate this plan during Watanagashi-hen and Meakashi-hen because she couldn’t kill Rika by herself. If she doesn’t have the corpse, she cannot use this excuse, and if we have to speculate a specific time required for the “automatic L5 madness”, Takano will be completely overwhelmed by her own lies.

In such, Takano took the words of her grandfather too literaly, and thus, being a god, it is one being revered.
Reverance can be either from respect, admiration or fear. The later is something so seductive it is hard to not pay attention to it.
Of course, I don’t mean that Takano chosed this path like this, like “easy go, easy win”. Rather, it is something popping on her mind more naturally.
There are probably more reasons behind this, and we shall see in Matsuribayashi-hen.

This Fate of June 1983 has ended just like always…
…However…
…even in death…

…heroic friends don’t yield against fate…

Now… Doom is inevitable? Will everyone be happy?
This is your decision to witness the possible arrival of a miracle…
Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai continues…

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What kind of world lies outside of the well?
Is it something that is worth struggling for?

What kind of world lies outside of the well?
Is it something so attractive enough to fall and try over and over again?

What kind of world lies outside of the well?
Let’s enjoy taking the pains of finding that out.

If I reach the world that yearn for, it must be a spectacular world.
Even if that world was another pit inside a well.

The key to the new world is the resolve to get out of the well.
Being able to get out or not,
A new world awaits…

-Frederica Bernkastel
(Translation Rights: kj1980 from Animesuki Forums)

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[Comparison]

As you might have seen in AS, many people commented about the changes in this episode.
As i said in the summary, there are up and downs.
Let’s see…

1) Time Stop
The biggest change is probably how Keiichi was shot. In the games, Keiichi was shot without anyone could notice.
As soon as it happens, Hanyuu suddenly freezes the Time. Rika doesn’t understand much, and Hanyuu basically let them know the truth. Soon, everyone notices Keiichi’s wound.
Due the Time Stop, they CAN’T move, they are barely in the same situation than Hanyuu’s: they are watching, powerless to what is happening.
Keiichi realizes it as well, and talks about his “retiring speech”.

This change is most likely a UP: Basically, the Time Stop was kinda too corny, as it is forced for drama, but also “last speech of death etc”.
Death isn’t a concept of agonizing with people being able to have/tell things in the last minute. The anime was realist enough to get an unfair death dealt by the enemy, and not letting such slow moment.

The bad side of this part is probably a despair less effective than the game, where everyone were crushed.
Rika was probably the MOST affected by this, as she refused to go on in a world, where Keiichi isn’t present anymore. That’s what I would complain: Rika had so many fighting spirit because of our hero keiichi that his death should have create a giant catastrophe for her. She was only dumbstruck, and she almost looked more concerned about Mion than Keiichi.
Rika in the game wasn’t able to accept this, and even begs Hanyuu about it, wondering if it is really fate. Hanyuu had no choice but saying she has to forget about it, and it will be possible to retry.
In that same aspect, Keiichi apologized to Rika in the end, about his retiring, because he knew that he brought many things about “beating the crap out of fate”. And ironically, he is the first one to fall in the clutch of fate.
Even though Keiichi’s speech was a “bit” exaggerated, he acted manly in the end again, assuring it is over for him, saying it is alright ashe is dead for now, but asks everyone else to beat the crap out of Takano.

2) Execution
In the games, after the dramatic discussion, the Time Stop ceases, and Keiichi says Takano won’t win lik this, of course she is quite amused. Then, in that aspect, Takano begins to kill one by one each of them, in that order: Mion => Shion => Rena => Satoko
The switch between Shion and Rena isn’t a problem, but their execution is.
To summary a bit, once the time stop faded, Takano is before everyone, but no one moves.
Takano is sadistically executing, and here are the big differences:

  • Mion: She never acted like a Hero, or desperate avenger. In fact, she was still in shock. Takano viciously says “Since you are the club president, it should be natural for you to leave first, right?”
    Mion has barely the time to say “it can’t be. han… hang on!” *Bang*.
  • Shion: She had a complete different behaviour, as she was enraged and asks Takano if she was responsible for Satoshi’s death. Takano replies like this “since I dislike being yelled at, i won’t tell you” *bang*.
  • Rena: the scene was basically the same, as Rena taunts Takano, claiming there is no way she can be oyashiro-sama, as it exists.
  • Satoko: Takano was wondering what she will do with Satoko, and even suggested she might be spared and used as a guinea pig for Takano and her friends. Of course, Satoko can’t accept such things. Then the rest was somewhat the same. However, there is a significant change: Takano never confirmed Satoko’s answer, and shoots her when she said “broccoli”. It is only after that Takano says “correct”, and then laughs crazily.

As you can see, the differences are notable and not exactly positive.
For Mion, it is really a blow, as Mion original behaviour had HUGE weight in the despair.
Both Shion are valid, though her original behaviour was more powerful, especially her enraged line. Rena was the same as ever.
Satoko’s original scene was even more cruel, as the first suggestion of Satoko brough some fake hope she might live on, especially the quiz was suggest just after this.

The only “good part” of the change of the execution is probably the general behaviour: Basically, Rika’s friends don’t stay dumbly in front of Takano. Even though she has a gun, this doesn’t exactly fit what Keiichi asked for them. But still, it isn’t that bad for them, as they are facing their impending demise. Thus, that’s why i put ” on the good, because it isn’t exactly whole positive improvement.

Thus, the true good change is only the removal of the Time Stop.

Now, why “cauliflower or broccoli“? This was something the anime completely skipped in the first season.
In fact, Satoshi and Satoko are colorblind. In such instance, they are unable to tell the difference between both vegetable, which is a rampant joke about them. (This is the main reason why Satoko isn’t able to say which of either Magatama is effective in Higurashi Daybreak Kai, when you finish the Story mode with Shion&Satoko Team)
Obviously, Takano knew it, being the nurse and all. Thus, the question was a double trap: not only she will kill her anyway, but it is just another cruelty.

3) Hanyuu’s conflict
Everyone discussed a long time with Hanyuu. Rena took a long time to convince and shatters Hanyuu’s despair and loneliness.

4) Takano mad speech
It was extremely cut short, as Takano explained more extentively her “being a god” thing.

5) BGM
That was probably the worst part, as nothing was really powerful enough.
It lacked of everything: action track for the pursuit (Fearlessness), Keiichi’s fall (一重), execution sequence (), Hanyuu’s despair (conviction), Rika’s determination and everyone else (you), and finally, Takano’s mad pleasure (月(惨⇔賛)歌)

The most hurtful blows were seriously Keiichi’s BGM and Rika’s BGM.
Frankly, “you” was the PINNACLE, as it was not only nostalgic, but sweet and full of hope and devotion track.
So powerful it has something like 40-50% of the impact of the scene alone for me.
It was really something annoying…

If you want to watch this for the PS2 version, here is the link of the whole sequence, 「山狗ターン」, on nico nico douga.
Yes, you need to register, and unfortunately, you can’t find this video in youtube anymore, as they simply deleted it for “violation”…
The video uses the original tracks of the VN, and absolutely not the below average of the PS2 one.

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Well, Minagoroshi-hen has ended. We have everything to explain the mystery, though backstory can help to understand fully the situation.
However, now, how Rika will be able to fight fate now?
You shall see.
Next week will be the start of the final chapter of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai: 祭囃し編 – Matsuribayashi-hen – Festival Accompanying Chapter

Hope you will enjoy the ride until the end.

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10 Responses to “Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai, Episode 13 : Analysis, Thoughts, and Random Comments”


  1. 1 Hecman October 5, 2007 at 12:43 am

    Amazing, “Analysis, Thoughts, and Random Comments!” I got many questions but I ask a few.

    Please tell me if I understand your explaination, Klashikari. So Frederica Bernkastel is dark Rika, the combine experiences of the many Furade Rika that attempted to free themselves of the fate of 1983? Frederica merges with the Furade Rika of the new world in a attempt to change fate.

    I never knew the Houjou’s 2 children where color blind. Will
    Matsuribayashi-hen show what happened to Satoshi?

    Let me get this straight, Rena said Takino can’t be Oyashiro-sama since “it exists.” Does this mean Rena knows about Hanyuu in some way?

    Klashikara did you play the game and know Japanese?

    Man I can’t wait for the next episode and see the full power Rika and her dear friends!

    Oh is the preview safe to watch?

  2. 2 klashikari October 5, 2007 at 5:02 am

    1) “dark” isn’t exactly appropriate, but well, it is basically like this. As i explained before, the “kuro Rika”, Frederica is indeed all the consciounsnesses of all Furude Rika who existed in the prior worlds.

    2) It is extremely hard to say if Rena was either tauning takano, still believing in oyashiro sama, or referring to Hanyuu. Considering the truth, her usual sharp observation/deduction skills and her confrontation with hanyuu in the “worlds space”, I believe Rena somehow sensed hanyuu.

    3) I just have very very tiny japanese knowledge, so i’m especially basing myself on my listening comprehension (not especially reliable) and Text exctractor / Dictionary (longe life to WWWJDIC)

    4) yes, the preview is totally safe to watch

  3. 3 sadakups October 7, 2007 at 3:31 am

    Isn’t it too early to reveal who Oyashiro-sama is? I haven’t played the games, but I presume that it would be revealed in Matsuribayashi-hen? Unless, it’s pretty obvious to some, but IMO, I’d rather see and hear it in the show.

    And another question, that final scene in the “world’s space” – is that for real or is it something that was just in their minds?

  4. 4 klashikari October 7, 2007 at 12:12 pm

    err… it was revealed even since minagoroshi: Hanyuu is Oyashiro-sama.
    That said, the “oyashiro-sama” we know is rather the false image the viallgers have build in their zealotry and various superstitions.
    Of course, there is another reason why Oyashiro-sama is protrayed as an “avenger”, but this is a tiny spoiler which should be given around Matsuribayashi/

    for the second question: it is for real.

  5. 5 Hecman October 8, 2007 at 2:10 am

    Who do you think it was, Sada? Frederica Bernkastel?

    You got the games? Dammit! When will they bring the games to other markets!? I would buy a playstation 3 right now just to play the Higurashi games.

    Or I can learn to read Japanese… Hmm…

  6. 6 Dark-Pie October 9, 2007 at 4:46 am

    Holy cr@p. I was told they stopped airing episodes. Wow I’m really late. 😦

    Your summary was great and I’ll save any other comments for 14 when I see it.

  7. 7 innominate October 13, 2007 at 5:10 pm

    o’ klashi, didn’t know you learned japanese ^^

  8. 8 Twila27 April 6, 2009 at 3:30 am

    I realize that this is two years or so after you’ve posted this, but I really have to thank you, Klashikari, for the analysis. The Houjou siblings being colorblind explains quite a lot, and the whole breakdown of Frederica (I’ve heard about her on Animesuki and such) was very helpful for understanding the concept behind her character. I’m trying to contribute to the Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Wiki over at “whentheycry.wikia.com”, but so far I only can add the story and other details as the anime tells it, as that is all I have taken in so far.

    I also wish they would release the games in other markets outside of Japan, but I’m not too sure it would be the wisest decision sales-wise. Most people would probably be scared away by the violence, anyway.

    I’m definitely going to read the rest of your thoughts on the other episodes, because the increased comprehension I now have far surpasses anything I’ve felt out of a composition class. I wish I had to do analysis of anime instead of novels, because this seems so much easier to discuss.

    Again, many thanks for this writeup, I wish you luck in whatever you are doing two years later.


  1. 1 Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai, Episode 14 : Analysis, Thoughts, and Random Comments « When Anime Past Meets Present Trackback on October 13, 2007 at 12:01 am
  2. 2 Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai, Episode 24 : Analysis, Thoughts, and Random Comments « When Anime Past Meets Present Trackback on January 2, 2008 at 1:57 am

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