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Old 2014-04-14, 21:48   Link #34321
Dr. Casey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ithekro View Post
Could Kinzo have dementia at that age in his life?
What age do you mean? If you're talking about Yasu's birth in 1967, doubtful - Kinzo would only have been in his early 60s at that point, and dementia at that age is quite rare. I'm inclined to think that Kinzo never developed dementia, though, because that would muddy the waters too much - the mistakes of his later years could be blamed on the dementia rather than Kinzo himself, and that's just not very satisfying from a storytelling perspective.

@jj: That sounds amazing, but I'm not sure that's the right chapter. I read through episode 8 chapter 8 (the third and last chapter of the Halloween party), but the Kinzo/Genji flashback wasn't featured there. I'm curious to see if Kinzo had some screws loose even as a youth, or if he was perfectly stable and balanced during his early, pre-Headship years.

Also, lol'd at Renall's description of Asshole Genji.
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Old 2014-04-15, 02:22   Link #34322
haguruma
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Originally Posted by GoldenLand View Post
That's spoilered as "the true culprit", but...
Spoiler for discussion of the spoilers:
Nah, it doesn't really mean that everything between October 4th when Yasu threw out the bottles and the 6th when the explosion happened actually occurred in one of the three ways she had imagined. She imagined this roulette with 3 different outcomes but failed to see that the people around her are not as passive as herself.

So very likely the content of Eva's diary is pretty much completely true as well, though probably tainted by a lot of bile and anger from Eva after the incident...as well as written from her personal perspective.

I do wonder though if the manga is also going to give us a little bit more about the catbox and how Battler escaped...

On a different note:
What I do like is the more obvious parallels between Yasu and Ange that are woven into the manga, which the VN sadly underplayed a lot. In the siege on the chapel, when Ange and Beatrice have their battle...it's kind of underwhelming and after reading it in the manga I can't help but think that the seiyuu did a mediocre job in the PS3 version as well.
In the manga there are two instances that stand out for me. One is Beatrice saying that "Those who loose sight of their own future because they chain themselves to the past are the saddest of all", and of course it completely goes by Ange that Beato also means herself in a way.
The other is when Ange says that a life like her's is not worth living, one where she would be all alone, nobody there to understand her, and that she simply wanted to know the reason for her loneliness and then just go and join all her family in death...which makes Beato remember how "she" went through similar motions.
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Old 2014-04-15, 02:46   Link #34323
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Originally Posted by Dr. Casey View Post
What age do you mean? If you're talking about Yasu's birth in 1967, doubtful - Kinzo would only have been in his early 60s at that point, and dementia at that age is quite rare. I'm inclined to think that Kinzo never developed dementia, though, because that would muddy the waters too much - the mistakes of his later years could be blamed on the dementia rather than Kinzo himself, and that's just not very satisfying from a storytelling perspective.

@jj: That sounds amazing, but I'm not sure that's the right chapter. I read through episode 8 chapter 8 (the third and last chapter of the Halloween party), but the Kinzo/Genji flashback wasn't featured there. I'm curious to see if Kinzo had some screws loose even as a youth, or if he was perfectly stable and balanced during his early, pre-Headship years.

Also, lol'd at Renall's description of Asshole Genji.

I was thinking in the 80s when Yasu shows up again.
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Old 2014-04-15, 06:35   Link #34324
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Originally Posted by haguruma View Post
And here the translation of the article...and now I really want to read the complete chapter 25 and 26...
Spoiler for The true culprit:


Though I do wonder how much more about Tohya the manga will reveal...
Thanks so much for this translation! It is very interesting.... but it sort of makes me want to curse Ryukishi for being a lazy-ass in the entire Chiru.

A great portion of this is necessary info that should have been in EP7, because heck, it is part of the answer! Apart from that, it sort of confirms Yasu dressing up as Kanon which I really wished wasn't true, but well, since Genji and the others were in on it all the way it can.... sort of... work if we are willing to twist some stuff around.

Anyway, I really like the polydactility idea except... it was never adressed in canon, so why bother put it in now? If Ryukishi had a general idea for that (which he almost certainly did) he should have put it in the actual VNs. Seriously, Chiru is so full of screw-ups here and there, and the manga is only making them stand out more, but at least it is partially making up for them.

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Originally Posted by GoldenLand View Post
That's spoilered as "the true culprit", but...
Spoiler for discussion of the spoilers:
Rather than an actual confession, could it be another attempt by Yasu to mark herself as the culprit? If she wanted to be condemned and judged, she obviously knew what she was doing was objectively wrong and yet went along with it then.... it doesn't sit well with me.
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Old 2014-04-15, 08:36   Link #34325
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So hey speaking of things that are objectively wrong according to the story, how about magic?

I mean, let's assume all the above information about Yasu is true. Ultimately, then, we can say that "Yasu" is an illusion and basically every aspect of her identity is a false construction. Yasu isn't "Sayo Yasuda," she isn't female, she isn't a servant, she isn't an orphan. This identity she believed she had fell apart the moment she started looking into it with any sort of critical eye and discovered that, surprise surprise, it wasn't true. The only reason "Yasu" exists at all is because it was more convenient for Genji to lie. But this proved wholly temporary and did nothing to stop any of the negative consequences of the lie.

But it's worse than that, as arguably Bern is correct in a roundabout way and "Lion" is also an unsustainable illusion. "Lion Ushiromiya" as the son of Krauss and Natsuhi was no less an illusion, and his rejection by Natsuhi was essentially because she couldn't bring herself to participate in a fiction. A fiction that was being forced upon her by Kinzo, who wanted it done because it was more convenient than admitting the truth. I'm not saying it was right for her to do what she did (but neither is she), but who the hell does Kinzo think he is to try to make her do that?

So really, when has magic ever helped anyone in Umineko?
  • The lie of her innocence and fidelity drove Natsuhi to delusion.
  • The lie that Kinzo would recognize her as a candidate for the headship led Eva to be fueled by her insecurities in the face of the truth that she was perfectly competent without her father's approval, something her husband kept telling her.
  • The lies surrounding Kinzo's death in no way helped Krauss's financial situation and just put everyone else in his family at risk.
  • Lying to Kyrie, Asumu, and Battler just ended up completely screwing up Rudolf's family situation for the sake of convenience, and may have done much worse if it had some effect on Kyrie's mental state. If nothing else, it drove her toward a murderous mindset on at least one occasion.
  • The entire Maria/Rosa relationship is based on Rosa's inability to empathize with Maria being in the same situation she was and Maria's unwillingness to confront the things that are uncomfortable to her. They both made excuses for their behavior.
  • The Maria/Beatrice relationship is essentially two people who don't like their crappy situations imagining better ones that just reinforce their unhealthy coping mechanisms.
  • Erika's inability to deal with uncertainty led her to construct fictions she could pretend were reliable truths rather than accept the reality of her feelings.
  • The catbox is clearly and provably morally wrong and ultimately ended up hurting Ange. Beatrice knew from the start that it was wrong, which is why she wanted someone to stop her, but the allure of the easy lie of the Golden Land was stronger than the difficult truth of living.
  • Eva refusing to say anything damaged any trust Ange had in her and destroyed their relationship.
  • Battler's gentle lie in ep8 didn't convince Ange of any of the points he was supposedly trying to convey to her because Ange immediately recognized it was false and refused to understand the intention behind what Battler was doing.
  • Tohya's very existence is essentially unfair to him, because he's actually a new construction in the body of a different person entirely. Of course this depends on whether Ikuko knew who he was, but man if she did...
Magic is only ever a temporary convenience that causes either you or someone else long-term harm. This seems to be the actual conclusion supported by the text. It clearly wasn't a successful coping mechanism for Yasu, because it didn't let her make a choice and commit to it. She had an excess of illusion and no truth, no wonder she wasn't satisfied with any of it; she hadn't been allowed to have a real identity.

Battler's "there's some things you'd be better off not knowing" argument is, effectively, a dodge. It's evading the fact actually shown by the story that even if his claim were true, it's impossible to avoid at least realizing your ignorance at some point, and that is fundamentally harmful. Yeah, Ange didn't know the truth... but she knew that she didn't know, and that was the source of her pain. Beatrice's fundamental error is creating the catbox without realizing that she could hide the contents of it but not the fact that it exists in the first place. She wasn't really erasing herself. That's impossible, it's a lie, it's magic. There will be consequences for the world as a result of her existence and she cannot wipe that away just by hiding knowledge of her existence.

What did help Ange? Facing the truth. In ep4 she learns to forgive Eva and Rosa and Kasumi through empathy, looking at them as human beings and understanding that they were hurt by people who should have cared about them just like she was. Being able to understand that the people who hurt her weren't inherently evil was cathartic. In ep8 she ultimately can't progress until she knows. Learning the truth doesn't harm her any more than it harmed Yasu; what hurt them was learning the truth after being forced to live years and years with the truth concealed from them out of convenience to others. The truth "hurt" Yasu because she learned that after all this time of "being Yasu," there wasn't a Yasu in the first place. But the only reason that hurt is because some idiot decided "Yasu" was more convenient than fessing up to what they did wrong. Her pain is entirely the making of other people lying about who she was because it was easier to do so, and when it all came crashing down it did so on her head.

So... uh... is the story saying that Bern is right? Because she might be ethically or motivationally wrong in what she does, but she doesn't seem to be factually wrong. She might want to reveal the truth for the wrong reasons (sadism, etc.), but a person can be right for the wrong reason. At the very least, I don't see any particularly good evidence to suggest ep8 Battler is more correct than she is, since his arguments contradict the rest of the story.
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Old 2014-04-15, 09:26   Link #34326
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Originally Posted by Renall View Post
So... uh... is the story saying that Bern is right? Because she might be ethically or motivationally wrong in what she does, but she doesn't seem to be factually wrong. She might want to reveal the truth for the wrong reasons (sadism, etc.), but a person can be right for the wrong reason. At the very least, I don't see any particularly good evidence to suggest ep8 Battler is more correct than she is, since his arguments contradict the rest of the story.
I think in a way it is and the EP8 manga is really enforcing it at several points that, while Bern is a bully who doesn't mind people suffering for her entertainment, she fulfills a necessary role in the narrative.
The fact alone that Ange so readily runs towards Bern, that she willingly tosses away her "childish dream of her family's return" and throws her life away to get hold of the truth is very indicative of the fact that what Battler is doing is wrong. Ange saying that "Battler is no better than the enemy Beatrice he tried to defeat" is a reasonable argument.

The bases in EP8 are basically turned on their heads, but I wouldn't say that they automatically make the catbox-fraction out to be the good guys. Battler says to Beato that, if needed, he'd use force on Ange to keep her from reading the diary. He literally chains her to his gameboard in the manga. Bern, Eva-Beatrice and Erika are making reasonable arguments by saying that all the misery sorrounding the catbox was a thing of their own doing...Eva-Beato nails it in chapter 17 of the manga, saying: by creating the catbox, by living lifes that gave the public no other chance but to doubt them, by failing to tell the truth at any given point they brought all of this upon themselves.

While Bern is clearly an antagonist, I'd say Battler has become something of a mix between an anti-hero and an anti-villain. He is doing what he thinks is best for the people he loves, but at the same time he doesn't even give them a chance to voice their doubts.
In the manga he admits, there was no Halloween party in 1986, he readily agrees that his tale is a lie, but he'd rather force his sister into not knowing than let her grow by facing the truth.

Ange's answer to Beatrice when she asks, whether Ange had not understood Maria's magic book that they left her, is quite impactful in that regard:
Quote:
Yes, I understood.
And I despaired over how powerless it is...
And all this, all that what my brother tried forcing on me...
Can I really go on living without knowing?!
The sweet illusion, the catbox all of you built is just a simple trick that tells me that I can go on living by just ignoring the corpses!
But just ignoring them doesn't change the fact they are dead!!
If I just believe then they will all watch over me from up in the clouds...such magic...such an illusion...such a daydream...
Do you really think that they can heal my wounds!?!
There is a thing called reality that magic can't touch!!
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Old 2014-04-15, 09:34   Link #34327
Renall
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My question would be whether this interpretation is merely emergent as an interpretation of the actual story or whether it was actually intended at any point. I think it's an entirely valid reading, but I honestly wonder whether it's the one we were supposed to have.

I mean it's fine to say that ep8 Battler is by his actions something of a villain or anti-hero, and I'd agree that he comes across as such, but is that really how we're meant to look at him? The fact that we do doesn't necessarily mean that we were supposed to. Milton may not have intended for Satan to come across as heroic in Paradise Lost, he's just read as an anti-hero by some interpretations because he's a remarkably charismatic character with a seemingly valid argument. He might still be an asshole, and he might have always been intended to be an asshole. The anti-hero interpretation might be a more interesting interpretation, but it may or may not be one the author meant.

I mean yadda yadda Death of the Author, we can interpret the message any way we like, but I am still curious as to the moral stance of the author because I feel it's important to judging the character of the work. So I am at least mildly curious if this was Ryukishi's intent all along because man, VN ep8 bungled it badly if so.
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Old 2014-04-15, 10:01   Link #34328
haguruma
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So I am at least mildly curious if this was Ryukishi's intent all along because man, VN ep8 bungled it badly if so.
Going by the direction that the manga is going, especially the way it highlights things, I think the grey reading of both sides is quite apt. Yes Bern and Erika are still pretty much villains, but it's actually Ange who is depicted as suffering under all of this...something that the VN sorely missed to depict properly, making her end up sounding more like a bitchy, whiny child than anything else. And the PS3 version did it's best (or worst) to make that impression even stronger...seriously I don't know who dropped the ball on the EP8 voice-acting...

Just to show, the scene I mentioned above from the manga:
Spoiler for ep8 manga chapter 21:
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Old 2014-04-15, 12:42   Link #34329
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I like those last two parallels there. Very nice superpositioning of that Yasu frame.
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Old 2014-04-15, 19:26   Link #34330
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I've mulled over the spoilers but... I think I need to read the manga. While some things are definitely good... there are some developments I find... questionable to say the least so I'm waiting to see them in contest.

Also, really, the more Ep 8 manga version is released the more I think Ep 8 VN was incomplete and poorly handed.

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At what point in the thought process did "We'll reassign the child's gender and raise them as a female even though regardless of presented gender sexual activity will be impossible" come to sound like a good idea to Genji? I mean there's a big difference between "I'm male but due to a childhood injury things don't work right" and "I thought I was female, but then puberty hit and I didn't develop like a female in any way and at some point I was finally told that I was actually born sexually male." Why was any of that even necessary? Did Genji think more than 20 minutes ahead and wonder what was going to happen in 12 years or so? It was actually more difficult to do the thing that hurt Yasu more.

Genji is basically gradually being characterized by the manga as a guy who didn't just drop the ball, he spiked it in the endzone directly into Yasu's face and then back-shuffled out of the stadium shooting the middle finger to literally everyone. Like some kind of characterization scapegoat. Why did (nonsensical or traumatic thing) happen? Because Genji is a stupid asshole, next question.
Honestly it's either that or he's retarded. I'm not sure the gender reassignment would stop her from having sex as a female as we don't exactly know how Nanjo performed it but it's sure that, if that was necessary and had such consequences, she should have been at least prepared early. What were they hoping that she would find out by herself and spare them the trouble to tell her? What were they hoping when she started dressing up as a male? Did they even stop a moment and talked to her to understand why was she doing it and which course it was better to take? She should have felt horribly confused maybe wasn't that the moment to explain her some truth about herself?


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Originally Posted by Dr. Casey View Post
@jj: That sounds amazing, but I'm not sure that's the right chapter. I read through episode 8 chapter 8 (the third and last chapter of the Halloween party), but the Kinzo/Genji flashback wasn't featured there. I'm curious to see if Kinzo had some screws loose even as a youth, or if he was perfectly stable and balanced during his early, pre-Headship years.
It is. The chapter starts with Kinzo talking about his guns and then being found by Ange. Then Eva asks him about Genji and we get the tale. Is the Ep 8 chap 8 that you're reading counting 46 pages? Because I fear you're missing a part of it. Kinzo's past starts at page 22

Quote:
Originally Posted by haguruma View Post
Just to show, the scene I mentioned above from the manga:
Spoiler for ep8 manga chapter 21:
Thanks for the translation and yes I like how the manga, differently from the VN, doesn't portray Ange like a spoiled brat but like a desperate young woman.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Renall View Post
So hey speaking of things that are objectively wrong according to the story, how about magic?

I mean, let's assume all the above information about Yasu is true. Ultimately, then, we can say that "Yasu" is an illusion and basically every aspect of her identity is a false construction. Yasu isn't "Sayo Yasuda," she isn't female, she isn't a servant, she isn't an orphan. This identity she believed she had fell apart the moment she started looking into it with any sort of critical eye and discovered that, surprise surprise, it wasn't true. The only reason "Yasu" exists at all is because it was more convenient for Genji to lie. But this proved wholly temporary and did nothing to stop any of the negative consequences of the lie.

But it's worse than that, as arguably Bern is correct in a roundabout way and "Lion" is also an unsustainable illusion. "Lion Ushiromiya" as the son of Krauss and Natsuhi was no less an illusion, and his rejection by Natsuhi was essentially because she couldn't bring herself to participate in a fiction. A fiction that was being forced upon her by Kinzo, who wanted it done because it was more convenient than admitting the truth. I'm not saying it was right for her to do what she did (but neither is she), but who the hell does Kinzo think he is to try to make her do that?

So really, when has magic ever helped anyone in Umineko?
  • The lie of her innocence and fidelity drove Natsuhi to delusion.
  • The lie that Kinzo would recognize her as a candidate for the headship led Eva to be fueled by her insecurities in the face of the truth that she was perfectly competent without her father's approval, something her husband kept telling her.
  • The lies surrounding Kinzo's death in no way helped Krauss's financial situation and just put everyone else in his family at risk.
  • Lying to Kyrie, Asumu, and Battler just ended up completely screwing up Rudolf's family situation for the sake of convenience, and may have done much worse if it had some effect on Kyrie's mental state. If nothing else, it drove her toward a murderous mindset on at least one occasion.
  • The entire Maria/Rosa relationship is based on Rosa's inability to empathize with Maria being in the same situation she was and Maria's unwillingness to confront the things that are uncomfortable to her. They both made excuses for their behavior.
  • The Maria/Beatrice relationship is essentially two people who don't like their crappy situations imagining better ones that just reinforce their unhealthy coping mechanisms.
  • Erika's inability to deal with uncertainty led her to construct fictions she could pretend were reliable truths rather than accept the reality of her feelings.
  • The catbox is clearly and provably morally wrong and ultimately ended up hurting Ange. Beatrice knew from the start that it was wrong, which is why she wanted someone to stop her, but the allure of the easy lie of the Golden Land was stronger than the difficult truth of living.
  • Eva refusing to say anything damaged any trust Ange had in her and destroyed their relationship.
  • Battler's gentle lie in ep8 didn't convince Ange of any of the points he was supposedly trying to convey to her because Ange immediately recognized it was false and refused to understand the intention behind what Battler was doing.
  • Tohya's very existence is essentially unfair to him, because he's actually a new construction in the body of a different person entirely. Of course this depends on whether Ikuko knew who he was, but man if she did...
Magic is only ever a temporary convenience that causes either you or someone else long-term harm. This seems to be the actual conclusion supported by the text. It clearly wasn't a successful coping mechanism for Yasu, because it didn't let her make a choice and commit to it. She had an excess of illusion and no truth, no wonder she wasn't satisfied with any of it; she hadn't been allowed to have a real identity.

Battler's "there's some things you'd be better off not knowing" argument is, effectively, a dodge. It's evading the fact actually shown by the story that even if his claim were true, it's impossible to avoid at least realizing your ignorance at some point, and that is fundamentally harmful. Yeah, Ange didn't know the truth... but she knew that she didn't know, and that was the source of her pain. Beatrice's fundamental error is creating the catbox without realizing that she could hide the contents of it but not the fact that it exists in the first place. She wasn't really erasing herself. That's impossible, it's a lie, it's magic. There will be consequences for the world as a result of her existence and she cannot wipe that away just by hiding knowledge of her existence.

What did help Ange? Facing the truth. In ep4 she learns to forgive Eva and Rosa and Kasumi through empathy, looking at them as human beings and understanding that they were hurt by people who should have cared about them just like she was. Being able to understand that the people who hurt her weren't inherently evil was cathartic. In ep8 she ultimately can't progress until she knows. Learning the truth doesn't harm her any more than it harmed Yasu; what hurt them was learning the truth after being forced to live years and years with the truth concealed from them out of convenience to others. The truth "hurt" Yasu because she learned that after all this time of "being Yasu," there wasn't a Yasu in the first place. But the only reason that hurt is because some idiot decided "Yasu" was more convenient than fessing up to what they did wrong. Her pain is entirely the making of other people lying about who she was because it was easier to do so, and when it all came crashing down it did so on her head.

So... uh... is the story saying that Bern is right? Because she might be ethically or motivationally wrong in what she does, but she doesn't seem to be factually wrong. She might want to reveal the truth for the wrong reasons (sadism, etc.), but a person can be right for the wrong reason. At the very least, I don't see any particularly good evidence to suggest ep8 Battler is more correct than she is, since his arguments contradict the rest of the story.
I think the problem is the text tried to deliver too many messages at once and ended up making them confuse.

Let's start with 'magic as copying mechanism'.
Magic as copying mechanism is like giving a painkiller drug to tone down the pain. At a certain point you've to stop using it or you'll get addicted and you'll need more and more until it won't work anymore. In addition to this, like a painkiller drug it doesn't heal the problem, it just stops the pain temporally.
If Yasu had, like Shannon in Ep 2, merely contended herself with ‘using magic’ to find the courage to start something and then decided to drop magic and continue with her own power it wouldn’t have been so bad. She’s not Shannon of Ep 2 though, she’s completely dependant on magic she doesn’t believe she can make her relationship work without constantly using it.

‘Magic as an embellishment of the process’ isn’t harmful if the parties involved know the truth and don’t lose sight of it. Kinzo and Bice seem to play on the idea she’s a witch and it’s just a game. The problem exists when one of the two parties involved starts deluding herself it’s not an embellishment. Maria believes Sakutarou is real and she’s crushed when he ‘dies’. Ange starts to believe the 7 sisters are real as well and is crushed when they reveal herself for useless. They lost sight of a truth they knew, that Sakutarou is a toy and the 7 sisters a fantasy.
Harm can come also when one of the parties involved doesn’t know it’s an embellishment. Berune gets seriously scared when she believes Beatrice has played a prank on her. The servant who got injured might have ended up injured merely because she thought she saw something, got scared and fell.

‘Magic as a downright lie’ has the potential to become seriously harmful. Actually in real life there could be cases in which this doesn’t happen as the lie doesn’t get discovered and the lied part lives in blissful ignorance of the harmful truth but in Umineko we see lies end up always poisoning the existence of the people who’re feed them. Starting from Kinzo’s wife (Kinzo lied to her claiming he went for walks when he was meeting his daughter) and going through Kuwadorian Beatrice, Natsuhi, Asumu, Kyrie, Yasu, Battler, Erika, Maria, Tohya and reaching Ange (who was told by Eva she didn’t know what had happened) they all suffer harm from it. None of the lies told to them lead them to a ‘happy ending’.

‘Magic as faith/hope’ can work only as long as you don’t become dependant on it. Ange goes on with her life but keeps on hoping on Battler’s return and he’ll sort of come back. Yasu instead will depend so much on Battler’s return that she won’t be able to make anything, sustaining that hope will become too heavy and she will doom herself. It isn’t necessarily a delusion as Erika seems to believe, it’s just something on which you must not bet all you have or you might end up on losing everything. Not all the boyfriends betray their girlfriends like Erika’s boyfriend seems to do but some surely did. Rudolf betrayed… everyone, really, Maria’s father used Rosa, Hideyoshi and Krauss were loyal to their wives. Not all the loves were a lie unworthy of faith but some were.

As for truth, truth can be harmful. In order for it not to be people must be capable to withstand it. The key point in Umineko is that with good or bad reasons people refuse to help the ones facing the truth to help them withstand it. It becomes an aut aut. Either I won’t tell you the truth and I’ll leave you in harmful ignorance or I’ll tell you the truth in the most harmful way. No one thinks the truth is unpleasant but leaving this person in ignorance might do more harm than good so I’ll find a way to present the truth that’s not a lie but that won’t come as a crushing blow. If Yasu had slowly been prepared to the truth about herself and Kinzo instead than having the bomb dropped on her she might have managed to face it. If Ange had slowly be prepared to face the truth about Rokkenjima in the same way as her trip in Ep 4 seems to prepare her to face the truth about humans beings she might have managed to face the truth instead than jumping on self destruction like in Ep 7 & 8.
The key problem in Umineko is that people aren’t simply willing to do an effort to help others cope with the truth. They’re either in the party that want to hide it or to reveal it but there’s no middle ground and both solutions come out as harmful. Honestly in Ep 8 I was hoping the whole Halloween party was Battler’s idea to gently prepare Ange to the truth, not to force her to accept to a lie. Helping her to remember that her family wasn’t formed by bad people might help her to accept that in a desperate moment they did the wrong thing… but it doesn’t have to become the illusion that they never did anything wrong.
I understand Battler/Tohya’s fear of the truth as it almost erased Battler in Ep 4 and it put Tohya on a wheelchair but the problem is they didn’t learn from their experiences the right lesson which is if they had been helped to face the truth instead of having it tossed at them, they wouldn’t have reacted to it so badly. All they seem to have learnt from it is truth caused me harm so let’s hide it as there’s no way to cope with it without risking to die in the process.
On the opposite side Ange seems to expect that truth will magically do her some good when it’s not knowing truth what’ll help her but her stance once she’ll know the truth. Deep down she’s expecting truth will be nice or at least acceptable and not as horrible as it is. While her claims are true all her quest for the truth seems to come down to give her two options: if the truth is good then it’ll improve her life, if the truth isn’t good it’ll give her the strength to kill herself.
We don’t need to read the book of one single truth to figure out that if Battler and Eva wanted to hide the truth is because the truth isn’t good so Ange’s quest is basically aimed not at finding the truth and copying with it but at finding the truth and using it as an excuse to self destruction.
In the VN this came out pretty badly, presenting her as a spoiled child, the manga at least gives full deep to her desperation. She can’t stand her present situation and she’s so deep into desperation that she can’t find a way out for good or for bad.
Like Yasu she wants to escape to her fate but she’s doing it in the wrong way.

Maybe the odd thing in Umineko is that it tends to focus more on how people do mistakes than on people doing the right things. No one does the right thing and the sense of wrongness is increased by the fact there isn’t actually something that could be done for the Rokkenjima tragedy as it had already happened and no one can unmake it. Ep 6, Lion, Ep 8, they’re all lies. People messed up and things can’t be fixed. No one will be resurrected. No one will manage to make it right again. No one will learn from his/her mistakes. And since it seems the manga implied Ange died as well… no one will make things right with Ange either. If Ange died the good ending is also an illusion. Ange won’t cope with the truth. Showing it to her like that was a mistake like hiding it from her. No one will take the third option, telling the truth in a way she could accept it.

I'm curious to see where the manga will go, but if the truth is that Ange died then Bern and Lambda about how the story couldn't end with a good ending are tragically true as the only way to get a good ending would be a fantasy ending in which Ange didn't kill herself but coped with the truth. Or, in short, a lie.
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Old 2014-04-16, 09:26   Link #34331
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The part of the goat self-censor in this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1q6iqSk_pQM 12:34 is pretty audible about who the culprit is(I think).

"After all, ***********, **********!!"
Possessing faint Japanese knowledge, I'm sure I heard
"Ushiromiya Eva ------- ja nai!!"
" ---------- da yo!!"(Really inaudible because of that sound)

Non verbatim, and adding context from before and after scenes, I think it means "After all, Ushiromiya Eva is not the culprit!!" I don't understand what is said next, but basing on Ange's reactions about not accepting it, insisting that Eva is the culprit and that Kyrie, Rudolph and Battler are the victims; the culprits are Battler's family.

I'm not sure about Battler but I have ridiculous freebie blue truth with respect to Ougon Musou Kyoku:
"Black Battler's 2nd palette looking like Tohya Hachijo makes it look like Battler is part of the culprit theory."
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Old 2014-04-16, 11:42   Link #34332
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The problem is less who, but why and to what extent, and that's something Eva presumably didn't know. Battler's involvement, for example, is portrayed in two distinctly different ways: In the ep7 Tea Party he seems very much against any criminal activity, but in Bern's ep8 purple game he's outright helping his parents commit murder.

I think there are a few common elements that seem to indicate something is up:
  • Yasu was planning a fake murder of some sort, but what she really wanted was for the epitaph to be solved so someone could stop her.
  • The epitaph was very likely solved.
  • At some point, people other than the adults die or appear to be dead; Eva seems to know or believes she knows how the other adults died assuming we take the ep7 TP as similar to her diary (although it can't be a fully accurate depiction), but she didn't directly witness any other deaths as far as we're told so far in the VN and manga.
  • Eva believes that Kyrie and Rudolf were responsible, and they do not deny it, but neither are their motives as clear as Eva might insinuate she thinks they are. Kyrie's final speech about Ange in particular is clearly manipulative and carefully designed.
  • Eva appears not to know the extent of Battler's involvement, and may not have had any contact with him whatsoever. He effectively seems to just disappear, but we know that he survived somehow.
The thing that sticks out to me is the notion of somebody faking their death. It happens constantly:
  • Shannon fakes her death in ep1, then Kanon does the same.
  • Arguable in ep2, but Kanon didn't "really" die and appears later according to Gohda.
  • Yasu is supposedly faking death in ep3, and some interpretations allow this to be true for other characters (briefly) later.
  • The circumstances of Kumasawa and Gohda's deaths in ep4 have the appearance of a fake hanging, although they turn out to be real murders when Battler investigates further.
  • The First Twilight of ep5 is clearly faked.
  • Battler fakes his death in ep6 along with the others. Additionally, Erika kills people who are faking death to "confirm" it.
  • Eva isn't actually dead in the ep7 TP when shot and essentially "returns from the dead" later.
  • The ep8 purple game revolves around Battler lying about his parents' death.
This leads me to believe that someone was faking their death, but I'm not sure how this ties into actual events. There's an obvious impetus for someone to do so, because Yasu apparently intended the murder game to be fake. The bomb was the fallback according to the manga, so it reads like she wasn't going to directly murder anyone under any circumstances and just let the bomb go off if nobody stopped her. The question is how this squares up with the narrative of the adults fighting over the gold (because it seems like a fake murder would be irrelevant if the adults started the chaos by shooting one another) and with what Yasu was doing. The other unanswered question is who solved the epitaph. We're told the parents can solve it together, and we're also told that Battler has the ability to solve it. Ep7 implies the adults did it, but ep1-4 implied that the adults were usually not inclined to do it until the fake murders started because they simply didn't take Beatrice's letter seriously.

So I wonder if either Battler was the one who solved the epitaph (and informed all the adults) or if Battler participated in faking his death as part of Yasu's "murders" and this spurred the adults to solve it and then tensions ran high because they didn't know the deaths weren't real. Kyrie snapping and going on a killing spree would make an awful lot more sense if Rudolf had just told her that Battler was her son and Battler was apparently just murdered, for example. In ep6, when Rudolf believes Battler is dead, he has a breakdown about it too. If the adults had some reason to suspect the other adults then anybody's children turning up "dead" would put them on edge. Although then we run up against the problem of "Beatrice's" confession to them in the gold room. Given that she's playing up the witch role you'd think she'd mention something about how everyone who "died" was "revived" if that was part of the script. But maybe she didn't get that far before the shooting started.

The missing point of view in all of these events is Battler's. The VN didn't touch on his direct recollection of events very clearly (unless, as has been suggested, ep4 was sort of his perspective on events), and the manga may or may not. It's especially important in the instance where Battler saw something really important that Eva didn't see, or knew about something Eva didn't know (like a murder game). It's obvious why Ange might suspect he was involved since popular theories at the time often included him as a culprit in theories about his family, but he's really the only person who would know for sure as Eva seemingly didn't.
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Old 2014-04-16, 11:51   Link #34333
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So, um, just for clarity's sake...what exactly is that page that haguruma just translated (and thanks a lot for that, by the way)? It seems to be a summary of what was revealed in the latest EP8 manga chapters, but is it actually written by Ryukishi or is it just a fan's impressions?

In particular I really want to know about this part:
Quote:
Whatever she chose, she was sure to suffer. But she also suffered by not choosing. All because of the accursed lineage that was burdened upon her.
It was as if destiny was playing with her. But the girl did not know that this was what it meant to live.
George would have surely accepted her even if she came forward with all of this. She would surely be able to live as just "Yasuda Sayo", were she to discard "Beato" and "Kanon".
But that expectation was haunted by Shannon fearing in her heart the "nightmare that George might completely refuse the human that is me."
She knew for herself that George was not a man like that. She knew it, yet the fear would not go away.
...and whether any of that is actually said straight out in the manga or whether it's just the interpretation of the person who made this particular summary. Because if Ryukishi actually wrote all that himself, then...well, I certainly have things to say about that.
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Old 2014-04-16, 13:05   Link #34334
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drifloon View Post
...and whether any of that is actually said straight out in the manga or whether it's just the interpretation of the person who made this particular summary. Because if Ryukishi actually wrote all that himself, then...well, I certainly have things to say about that.
It is a fan summary but it keeps vey close to what we already know from other sources and what is apparently featured in chapters 25 and 26 of the EP8 manga (though I have to confirm that myself in two weeks).

We know that Ryukishi said, George would have accepted Sayo even if she had told him the truth, way back in his interview with Keiya in Answer of the Golden Witch
. The nightmare with George saying to her face that she disgusts him, was featured on a blog that puts some selected pages or panels online when chapters are released.
The whole aspect of the cursed lineage is a little hazier, since so far the only excerpts we have show that this is what Yasu was thinking about herself after she learned of being the child of a rapist and conceived in incest...so she basically blames her genes for her desire towards her cousin-nephews/niece.

I do wonder what you have to say about these parts though...I'm still collecting my thoughts

Btw. concerning what Renall said earlier about Bern's rather strange role of not being exactly wrong while still being an antagonist...
The opening pages of chapter 20 are quite interesting regarding that, especially if you DO read Bern as the same Bernkastel from Higurashi:
Spoiler for EP8 manga chapter 20:

If we do read this in a more positive light for Bern, then we could say that she experienced "not knowing" as a prison (in Higurashi) in which she was forced to live and die in pain again and again, while "knowing" released her from that prison. For her there is just misery in "not knowing", so that explains her desire to rip the guts out of a story, to know everything there is to know.

Or...well....she could just be an ass that is accidentally right

And since I didn't really notice the posts before...
EDIT:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Renall View Post
So I wonder if either Battler was the one who solved the epitaph (and informed all the adults) or if Battler participated in faking his death as part of Yasu's "murders" and this spurred the adults to solve it and then tensions ran high because they didn't know the deaths weren't real.
The problem we run into with the second option is that the EP8 manga pretty clearly rules out the possibility of Battler ever ACTUALLY becoming a knowing accomplicee in Yasu's plot.
Spoiler for EP8 chapter 20:

Having Battler as an accomplicee basically defeats Yasu's goal and modus operandi...so, while it's not impossible, it just is very unlikely to happen...
What it does tell is though is, that the adults, or at least Kyrie and Rudolph, might have had a very clear reason to take Battler with them to the island and leave Ange at home...

Last edited by haguruma; 2014-04-16 at 13:20.
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Old 2014-04-16, 13:16   Link #34335
Renall
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haguruma View Post
If we do read this in a more positive light for Bern, then we could say that she experienced "not knowing" as a prison (in Higurashi) in which she was forced to live and die in pain again and again, while "knowing" released her from that prison. For her there is just misery in "not knowing", so that explains her desire to rip the guts out of a story, to know everything there is to know.

Or...well....she could just be an ass that is accidentally right
The translation is a bit ambiguous but this particular exchange appears to be Bern countering the "sometimes it's better to not know" argument with arguments of her own:
  • Not knowing things can be harmful.
  • While you can't go from knowledge to ignorance, you can pretend to be ignorant, or deny the truth, or concoct a fantasy, etc., so Bern sees doing that as no different (and possibly superior?).
  • The process of gaining knowledge is a positive thing, and choosing to remain ignorant is a sin.
Featherine's counter-argument is that not knowing about painful things can spare you from experiencing that pain, but I don't think Bern is convinced and I'm certainly not either. Bern's arguments are actually pretty convincing, I think. One could easily summarize the latter panels as an argument that while Ange's decision to seek the truth may cause her pain, it will also bring an end to her story one way or the other. Cynically you could say Bern is interested in that just so she knows how the story ends, but taking a more sympathetic tack you could argue she's saying that no matter how Ange chooses to obtain closure after gaining the truth, she will have closure.
Quote:
Originally Posted by haguruma View Post
Having Battler as an accomplicee basically defeats Yasu's goal and modus operandi...so, while it's not impossible, it just is very unlikely to happen...
What it does tell is though is, that the adults, or at least Kyrie and Rudolph, might have had a very clear reason to take Battler with them to the island and leave Ange at home...
He wouldn't participate in a crime, but he might participate for other reasons. The difference in ep5 I think is that he normally wouldn't participate in something like the plan to pressure Natsuhi, but that's because doing that would torment Natsuhi for someone else's gain. It's a bit like Virgilia saying Beatrice wouldn't do things for certain reasons. I'm not sure it means Battler would never participate (as otherwise, how do we explain Dawn).

EDIT: As an example, Battler could come in on a game or something if he actually did solve Yasu's intended riddle. Or if he remembered. Or any number of other reasons. He just couldn't be bribed to become an accomplice ahead of time, because he normally cannot be bribed and Yasu normally wouldn't intend to make him an accomplice. He could become one through all sorts of ways of his own volition though.
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Last edited by Renall; 2014-04-16 at 13:35.
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Old 2014-04-16, 13:53   Link #34336
haguruma
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renall View Post
I'm not sure it means Battler would never participate (as otherwise, how do we explain Dawn).
The question that still stands is, do EP5 and 6 depict any part of what actually happened (besides obvious hints to the fake murders, the tricks basically being laid out for us, gaining a better perspective on the influence of the meta-perspective) as in what actually could have happened in the actual 1986...

EP6 is more or less a giant troll against Erika without ANY other motivation besides the Duel of Love going on at the same time. The most confusing part is that Battler is basically in on the fake murders, but there is no reason for the fake murders in EP6...besides trolling Erika...because he basically already whitewashed all the characters into their version they also appear as in his EP8

In EP6 Battler plays along because there is nothing big to play along with. The only hint we could take from this is Erika's repetition of Rosa's EP2 motto, "You can only trust the corpses you killed yourself"
Does that mean that maybe somebody re-killed somebody? If yes, why?
And if not, we basically run into the "and they had a wonderful time until the island exploded" story again.

The problem with Battler playing along is not the believability of him doing so (well, not that alone) but of finding a believable reason of why Yasu would tell him, because the adults not knowing that he is pretending implies that it is Yasu's plan.
The reason for her to hold the fake murders is for her wanting Battler to solve them...him knowing about it and actually playing along kinda defeats that

EDIT:
And wouldn't him solving the fake murders make Yasu stop immediately, because it'd mean that Battler came through for her after all??
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Old 2014-04-16, 14:07   Link #34337
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As far as we know, Yasu did stop, or possibly she didn't get started, and if your summaries are accurate probably never intended to "actually" directly kill anyone by any standard means. If people were actually killed directly, ep7 and ep8 seem to be saying the parents were responsible, not Yasu.

Battler and Beatrice appear to be in collusion in ep6. We don't know why, because the game is handled almost entirely in the meta and is derailed. But we could say something similar for ep5 and yet the manga still tells us that there in fact was a Battler/Beatrice collusion. That seems oddly significant for Chiru's purposes, as Battler is essentially shown three times in a row to be in on the plan. In ep5 he's bribed into it, which is explicitly out of character. In ep6 we don't know why he's participating, but he seems to be doing so voluntarily. In ep8, he and Beatrice act like they're partners in crime (although admittedly that's Battler's happy world and that could just be the way he and Beato liked it, but still).

A lot of Yasu's plans for Battler presuppose that he will arrive not already remembering and will have to be reminded. We don't actually know that Battler would've been in that state, as we seem to know very little about Battler-Prime at the moment. Who's to say Battler doesn't immediately suspect Yasu when the letter arrives at dinner and solves the epitaph by himself on the first night? He meets her, they decide to go forward with the fake murders anyway (for Reason X, let's say they decide they want the adults to solve it together so they'll get the gold and be happy because they're nice dummies). They rope some servants or maybe the other cousins into it. The adults explode because they're on edge about "murders" and, while they do solve the epitaph, it doesn't have the result Battler and Yasu expected.

That's just a thought, but my point is Battler being completely out of the loop like he is in the first stories is a supposition on Yasu's part. Unfortunately, since we don't know anything about what Battler did, we can only sort of guess at it. We know that Battler must have:
  • Escaped being murdered by anyone, either because the killers didn't want to kill him or didn't find him.
  • Wasn't killed by Eva, either because she didn't think he was responsible, didn't encounter him, or she tried to kill him and failed.
  • Wasn't killed in the explosion, meaning he has to have learned about the tunnels at some point.
  • Somehow found (or was shown) a way to leave the island, presumably by means of a boat like that one scene at the end of ep8.
But that leaves a lot of gaps and says little about his mindset or motives.
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Old 2014-04-16, 15:11   Link #34338
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But that leaves a lot of gaps and says little about his mindset or motives.
That is true and I kind of like the "Battler and Yasu only wanted to have some stupid fun" idea, but if that were the case then it would derail some of the Battler characterization at the end of the core-arcs and the start of Chiru. Especially the scene at the end of EP5, where Battler is mourning over the ashes of Beatrice and laments how he would have wanted to find her sooner and if only she hadn't made her riddle so hard to solve...even if we take this to be Tohya, it kind of hints towards Battler never actively knowing who that person on the island was.

And yes, Battler in EP1 and 2 is clearly designed by Yasu, but meta-Battler from the start is very likely the Battler within Tohya and from EP3 onwards Piece-Battler is also no longer drawn by Yasu.
If we go through this:

EPISODE 1 & 2:
Piece-Battler (by Yasu):
He's very much out of the loop about the whole story but tries to be heroic at more than one point. He clearly cares about the family, the cousins and the servants but is designed to be kind of a goofball and pretty gullible.

EPISODE 3:
Piece-Battler (by Ikuko??):
He's still out of the loop, but the interesting thing is that he is not actively trying to do anything like he did in EP1 and 2. He's a little bit more scared by the whole situation but there is also clearly no witch illusion this time around (which draws an interesting parallel to EP5). He's also a lot readier to accuse people and act irrationally.
This is also the only time that 07151129 plays an active part in the island plot and Battler is shown to draw no immediate connection to it.

EPISODE 4:
Piece-Battler (by Tohya??):
His only real action comes at the end and he's shown to be very much investigative and trying to find stuff out, very different from his EP1 and 2 self. The rest of the time he clearly listens to the parents advice, but he is also shown to be close with the cousins. This is also the only time Battler meets with the witch before the time runs out and he doesn't recognize her or draw any parallels.

EPISODE 5:
Piece-Battler (by ????):
It's interesting because Piece-Battler here is played not by Battler but has his role assigned by Lambda. He is an accomplicee this time around and is at least controlled by the parents. He is said to know about Shkannon, but since the true culprits motive is different the whole game is off and him knowing about her doesn't mean much.
Battler is a much darker and brooding character than he was in the first four games and seems pretty disgusted by what the parents are doing around and to him. There is also this very interesting seen at the very end of the gameboard-plot in Natsuhi's room, when Battler intervenes with his usual catch-phrase...which in this case could actually be read as him standing up against the parents and their plot to humiliate Natsuhi any further...which would play a very nice parallel to the battler in the Court of Illusion.

EPISODE 6:
Piece-Battler (by Tohya):
In this one he clearly knows what is going on and this causes Battler to be almost a non-existence as a piece. He dies fairly early on, but I'd say it's also for the reason that this Battler is highly illogical. He is clearly working with Yasu's plan (which is kinda his plan in this version) but the Duel of Love is still going on, there is also a completely different reason for the epitaph-murders, basically making EVERYBODY in on it except Erika (at least it's implied that the father's and servants are in on it too)...but Erika is a non-existence.

EPISODE 7:
Piece-Battler (by Eva??):
The only thing we get in this plotline is that Battler had feelings for Shannon once and actually did want to meet her again but things came up and he wasn't able to.

So....yeah...Battler is a pretty confusing mess of a character. I really do hope the manga will shed at least a little bit more light on him, because right now he ends up as a pretty weird guy in my book. Especially with "him" (well Meta-Battler/Tohya) claiming in the EP8 manga, that it is all his responsibility for making "that person" create the catbox.

And this:
Spoiler for EP8 chapter20:
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Old 2014-04-16, 15:27   Link #34339
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I don't think we can trust Tohya's characterization of Battler any more than we can trust Yasu's characterization of Battler, because like her he knows only so much about Battler's personality, past, and actions. How much about "himself" has he recalled, and how much has he learned from external sources? We're outright told that he does not remember everything and he doesn't feel like he is Battler; Battler is a stranger, just a stranger he finds himself knowing things about in an unnerving way.

If Tohya were to deduce or recall that there was a promise, that Yasu was a person he knew, that there were things going on between his former self and her, then he might reach certain conclusions based upon future evidence. That is, "the explosion happened, so clearly I (that is, 'Battler') must have failed to remember my promise." That certainly might sound like a reasonable proposition, but it also might be an incorrect one. It would be the same thing as concluding "since the bomb went off, Yasu must've intended for it to go off and allowed it to do so." But ep7 shows us that Yasu can tell other people about it, so even if she'd intended to disarm it someone else could've armed it thereafter. Again, reasonable put potentially wrong, especially if Yasu was not in fact a murderer.

Another issue you bring up is the "Why didn't he come home?" angle, which just adds more questions. We know he chose to leave the island, apparently by himself (or with Yasu, depending on your take on ep8). At the very least, he didn't do what Eva did and stay put until the police came. At some point after this he becomes Tohya (or the genesis of the consciousness that will eventually come to be known as such). Erika's position that he can't come home at that point in ep8 is based on the presumption that Battler can't because he, like everyone else, is dead. But he wasn't, at least not on October 6th. So what was his plan? Where was it he intended to go?

And perhaps a meta-question being asked of Tohya through Erika is "if you know you're Battler, why didn't you contact Ange?" But that at least has an understandable answer (albeit one Meta-Battler can't provide), in that Tohya doesn't necessarily think of himself as Battler anyway and might be worried about the inadequacy of presenting himself to Ange when he's really just a stranger with broken fragmentary memories of the person she's hoping to see.
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Old 2014-04-16, 17:32   Link #34340
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About Battler's involvement:
It can be that Battler was involved in something, just not Yasu's game. It might be he and the cousins planned a Halloween prank for Maria for example (in Ep 6 Battler agreed to play dead because Erika was a jerk to Maria and he wanted to teach her a lesson).
It can also be that even if Yasu didn't want Battler to be involved, Rudolf and Kyrie decided to involve him anyway. They might have tattled out on him that Kinzo is dead (which is what Yasu tattled out on them) and asked his cooperation while at the same time keeping the thing secret from the others.
In short they feared for troubles and wanted an extra help from a direction no one would expect.
Rudolf is desperate after all so he and Kyrie might be planning desperate measures.

About the re-killing:
We don't really know at which point the game was when the epitaph was solved. We get the impression murders should start after midnight but if they're fake murders the servants could have been asked to play dead while Yasu was in the basement with the adults and when Rudolf and Kyrie left the place they found a bunch of "dead servants".
Or the cousins playing dead to prank someone.
Let's assume at this point they ended up saying something like "Wait, I just killed Eva and Hideyoshi but I didn't touch their son" in front of a supposedly dead George and you can have George resurrect quite hurriedly.
It can also be that an argument took place between George and Battler because George admitted he stole Battler's ex-girlfriend and Battler didn't take it as smoothly as one would think. The two have a fight, Battler is hit and assumed dead, Rudolf and Kyrie don't take it well. Then while they're on a rampage Battler wakes up, maybe in a confusional state and find Kyrie about to die. She tells him of the passage and he escapes.

About Prime being like Ep 4 or not

The real problem is we don't know if Ep 4 is merely a story Tohya created and that Bern used as a model to cover the parts Eva's diary didn't touch to create Ep 7 Teaparty or the real deal.
Ep 4 and Ep 7 have in common the idea of Kinzo's test but they go at it very differently.
Ep 4 presents it rather dramatically, with the siblings believing people had already been killed and the others are prisoniers while in Ep 7 is merely an excuse to get the cousins out of the room... which isn't even really necessary. Kyrie and Rudolf might have waited till they fell asleep and then killed them.
They couldn't leave the island so they weren't in a hurry.

About Battler & Yasu
An interesting point the VN implies subtly is that actually Battler liked Sayo but that he realized he came back too late and therefore couldn't claim rights on her.

There's an interesting bit in Ep 5, in which he talks to Beatrice but that could apply to Yasu as well in which he claims if she had had faith in him and had waited for him he would have came back for her... so it can be he came back for her, and inf act he doesn't come back in Ep 7 in which there's no Shannon.

However Ep 6 might also imply that Battler, who came back for Shannon, by finding a Shannon that wasn't the one he remembered, might not have reacted as smoothly as the other episodes implied he would act. Meta Battler is cold to Beato and wants his own Beato back and even tries to do something to get her to remember how she was before.
Unless this is supposed to be a parallel to what Kinzo did, it can reveal something about what happened on Prime.

About Battler and the Golden Land:
Honestly I've been stuck by the parallel between the Golden Land and the world in which Battler lived those 6 years. Maybe it's coincidental but Battler seems to claim he was having lot of fun in those 6 years and was very busy but in the end never told us exactly what he was doing. There are subtle hints they mgith not have been so fun.
However for 6 years he doesn't come back to Shannon nor, apparently, invites her to come to him. And he promised her he would be back, same way he promised Ange he would be back.

It's also interesting how Erika raises a good point, there are people who change their life because they knew something. Battler agrees there are and he knows Ange's life is terrible and yet he's sure Ange won't change in the better by reading that book.
What is making him so sure? Does he know Ange so well?
Or his is only wishful thinking because Ange has already read the book and had killed herself and he's just wishing he could rewind and have her take another path?
Or something else is stopping him from believing that by knowing the truth or that particular truth a person could cope with it and move toward a better life?

Of course it can also be Tohya's guilt speaking. He didn't want to be Battler so he refused to meet Ange... but then he might have felt guilty for this. He could have 'gone back home' but refused. To him Battler is dead so Ange can't reach him.

Really, it'll be nice if the manga were to tell us more about Battler's side as well. There are things about him that are quite unclear.

About the games

We've been worrying a lot in the past about how much Tohya remembers while writing the episodes but I wonder if this matters. With Ikuko having Yasu's confession as well as the media informations and the two messages which outlined Yasu's plan the books could be written even if Tohya doesn't remember a single detail of what had happened during those 2 days.

The setting for the 4 episodes supposedly authored by Tohya is, after all, pretty different.
For Battler's point of view Ep 3 have people dying with the adults taking care of the cousins and apparently unaware of what's going on, people is discovered dead, Kyrie did 'something odd' and Eva is suspected as culprit.
Ep 4 have the cousins always unaware but the adults are either killed or prisoners. Kyrie is one of the last getting killed but Eva dies pretty soon.
Ep 5 have the cousins minus Battler 'dying' but Battler believes he knows what's going on and the plot focus on making Natsuhi a scapegoat while keeping Erika in the dark of what's going on.
Ep 6 have Battler aware of what's going on until Erika starts acting crazy. In short the last episodes presents Battler as much more aware of things than the earliest which would contrast with the Teaparty in which he doesn't know a thing.

About the translations

A huge THANK YOU to haguruma for always providing translations! They're very apprecciated!
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