Every week, I keep waiting for the moment where Scum’s Wish begins to show some level of incompetence be it through the shows narrative, its characters or its visual presentation. But so far, I’ve yet to find such a moment in these 4 weeks since the show started airing, and this latest episode, like the one before it, was the best episode yet.
I keep thinking that this show can’t get any darker and that the dire circumstances of each of its character can’t get any worse, yet once again it seems the show has proven me wrong with all the dark twists and turns this episode delivered.
The key focus of this particular episode is Akane. In the last episode, we were given some hints that she wasn’t quite the perfect beauty that we were initially led to believe, and this episode gives us a much greater insight into just how despicable she really is. It turns out she’s a bloody sociopath who is completely in love with herself and makes a hobby out of stealing the hearts and bodies of men she isn’t even interested in. And why does she do it? She does it so that the people who do love those men become heartbroken, before also breaking the hearts of the very mean she strings along to develop feelings for her.
She’s a man-eater and a nasty, self-centred embodiment of pure lust and selfishness.
And what’s even more interesting is that she’s taken quite the interest in Hanabi. Not only does she see a lot of herself in Hanabi, but she’s completely aware of Hanabi’s feelings for Narumi and concocts the most wicked of plans. She arranges to meet Narumi in the music room, and tells Hanabi to meet her there as well. And what happens? As she planned, Narumi confesses his genuine feelings for Akane to her, right as Hanabi enters the room, and Akane turns to her with a smile, just to see the look of utter despair on her face. Why does she do all this? Because she can. Poor Hanabi.
The second half of the episode brings the focus back to Hanabi, and her attempts to deal with the fact she may have lost her chance of obtaining love with Narumi forever. She once again lets her own inferiority complex take over all reasoning, and blames herself for all of it. In her eyes, it’s her fault because she didn’t confess or make her feelings apparent. She was too hesitant to say or do anything, and how she’s lost him to someone who’s clearly out to cause nothing but misery to everyone.
She then heads back to Mugi’s in an attempt to gain some comfort, but stops herself because she wants to keep their relationship, the one thing “good” in her life, stable. This moment was a great insight into her true feelings, as once again, it seems that she genuinely cares about Mugi more than she lets on and she doesn’t want to hurt him. She’s really growing to care about him in ways I didn’t think would happen, and it’s nice to see.
And while turning back from Mugi’s, who does Hanabi run into? Ecchan. It turns out Ecchan has been following her, and she understands exactly what she needs: someone to use as a sexual release for her depression. Ecchan completely understands this, and like all other characters, she gives into her selfishness and takes advantage of Hanabi’s situation. She knows that Hanabi will never return her feelings of love, but she’s completely aware that this is the perfect chance for her to have sex with the one she loves.
She does just that, and we get the most upsetting Yuri sex scene to ever come from Anime. Hanabi makes it clear she’s not attracted to Ecchan at all, but that it “feels good”. Ecchan explains to her that it “feels good” because she’s being “touched by someone who loves her”. It’s all incredibly messed up and really, really depressing. Both these characters are completely broken by their lack of returned love, so they share a false intimacy in hopes that it’ll ease the pain some how. The scene is pretty darn explicit, more so than anything we’ve seen up til now, yet it still maintains an air of maturity and seriousness throughout the whole thing. It’s clear that this isn’t fan-service, and I’m glad the show has continued to keep itself above those levels.
The episode ends with Hanabi confronting Akane after the confession, with the latter showing her true nature by giving a speech about how she loves to be desired by men. What a crazy woman. I love it.
Another week has gone by and Scum’s Wish has delivered yet another solid episode. The show just keeps going deeper and deeper into the darkest depths of human selfishness and self-loathing and I’m loving every second of it. It’s hard to believe that so much has happened, yet we’re only 4 episodes in. What more else can possibly happen to make things worse? How much deeper can this seemingly bottomless pit of nastiness really go?
I’m looking forward to finding out.