Finally back on track with this!
This episode picks up exactly where the last one left off and we immediately get to see how Hanabi reacts to the world shattering news that Akane had sex with Narumi.
Her emotional state deteriorates and she becomes broken. A woman who doesn’t even want Narumi managed to achieve the one thing she desires above all else, and she hates herself for it. And in her self-loathing, Hanabi starts contemplating how she can take revenge on Akane for emerging victorious in their “battle” for Narumi’s returned affection. How does Hanabi plan on taking her revenge? By embracing the dark side of sexual desire, just like Akane does, and stealing all the men in her court. This is all accompanied by an incredibly interesting inner monologue with her childhood self who accuses her of being stupid and selfish. Despite acknowledging how poor a decision it would be to start stealing the hearts of all the men that are infatuated with Akane, she gives in to her selfish desire for revenge and filling her emptiness and decides to go ahead and do it.
Her first step in all this? To accept Mugi’s offer to start dating for real. Knowing that Mugi is head over heels for Akane, he’s an ideal target for her plan and an easy one at that. While Mugi seems very happy with this decision, if he finds out he’s still being used that boy is going to be really hurt.
Amidst all this Hanabi also finally decides to address the situation she’s in with Ecchan by ending their sexual partnership. She doesn’t want to keep using her and feels terrible for it. It’s both an interesting decision to make. She’s decided to start using as many people as she can to satisfy her sexual urges, yet she doesn’t want to use Ecchan because they’re actual friends. However, Ecchan replies saying she wants to be used and that she doesn’t care. She just wants to be close to the girl she loves, even if it means being used out of pure lust. Ecchan then gives Hanabi some shocking advice, that to win the sexual desires of the men she wants, she merely needs to act in a way that will win them over instead of being herself. And Hanabi takes this advice quite literally and goes ahead and follows it. Why is Ecchan giving this advice? I suspect it’s some kind of ploy to win over Hanabi’s affections.
Moving on from Ecchan, Hanabi decides to win over her next target. Remember the guy Akane was with back in Episode 3? Well he’s second on Hanabi’s list.
With very little effort, the guy seems totally head over heels for Hanabi leading her to believe she’s already got him in her court, until it turns out that’s not the case at all. Why? Because the guy doesn’t care if there’s emotions involved or not. He just wants sex and if he gets some emotional attachment on the side, then it’s an added bonus. He’s a player and he likes to sleep with woman, no strings attached. Does he like Hanabi? Sure. But he isn’t going to bare his heart and soul to her right out the gate.
And just like that the new Hanabi has ran into her first hurdle. The guy has completely exceeded her expectations by simply not caring, something that she wasn’t expecting to happen. What’s interesting is that of all the characters, this guy seems to be most comfortable with his own sexual situation. He even makes it clear that he’s completely aware that he’s one of many guys who Akane sleeps with, but he just doesn’t give a damn. Hanabi didn’t see this coming at all.
Afterwards, the final scene has the focus returns to Mugi and Moca who we haven’t seen in quite a while. Feeling distant from Hanabi and believing she is being unfaithful towards their newly established relationship, which she is, he asks Moca out on a date, as a joke. And what does Moca do? She accepts and the two are actually going to go out on a date. Oh my. I’m excited to see where this goes and curious if Moca has more of a dark side to herself as well, since so far just about everyone in this show does.
With this episode Scum’s Wish remains an incredible watch. So much keeps happening in each of its 20 something minute episodes and it’s incredible how much narrative content and deep character exploration we’ve seen, and it’s only the halfway point. There’s still 6 more episodes left and I’m honestly struggling to predict the direction that this convoluted web of emotions will spin next. I’m excited to see Hanabi dive further into the darkest depths of her sex-fueled revenge and curious to see how this date between Mugi and Moca will go. Here’s to next week.