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Kuzu no Honkai – Episode 5: Mugi’s Most Dire Problem

For the first time in slightly more than a year, I can say that I’m completely caught up on all the currently airing anime series that I want to watch. It’s nice not having that feeling like I’m missing something good and it’s nice to have a large group of shows that I’m watching that fit the various different types of series I want to watch.

One star of this season is Kuzu no Honkai (Scum’s Wish). Though, I’ve decided I don’t like calling it Scum’s Wish because I think the word “scum” is a bit too harsh to describe the main characters and it conflicts with my desire to see all the characters end up genuinely happy. (Yes, even the music teacher.) So, I’m using the Japanese title because that removes the problem for this English speaker.

Anyways, episode 5 sees the main characters all digging their graves a bit deeper and it remains to be seen if anyone is on the path that doesn’t lead to self-destruction. In the case of Mugi, in addition to his relationship issues, there’s the problem of his defective bedside clock.

That’s right, his defective bedside clock. Look at these screenshots, if you don’t believe me.

First is a shot of the clock just before Hanabi goads Mugi into fully consummating their physical-only relationship. The time is 20:39.

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And here’s a screenshot after that doesn’t go so well with the time being 21:17.

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The next screenshot occurs as Hanabi finishes dressing to leave and we see the clock is not working.

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And now, moments later, the clock is working again but is showing a time that looks like 20:19.

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And a couple of seconds later we pull back on the now lonely Mugi with the clock indeed showing a time of 20:19.

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Of course, the most likely explanation is that the people putting together this episode didn’t check the continuity close enough and not that Mugi is somehow time-traveling back for the chance to put things right which once went wrong or that he does, in fact, own a defective clock. More research is needed, and won’t be hard to get because there’s literally almost nothing else to look at in this bedroom.

And this actually leads me to a slightly more serious point I wanted to make. Look at that last screenshot of Mugi’s bedroom. It’s so incredibly barren of any sort of character, but, I’m not sure if this a reflection of some facet of Mugi’s personality or not.

Anime is not always made under the best circumstances and corners get cut. Sometimes a series like Puella Magi Madoka Magica makes it obvious that everything is there for a reason and some small item might be really important to the story and this signals the viewers to pay attention and we begin to comb the series over to tease out items and ideas about the show. Often, though, that level of detail is impossible to obtain or not attempted and I’m mostly fine with that. I don’t want every show I watch to demand that I become Sherlock (or that I need to read a bunch of online Sherlocks to clue me in) to effective watch it. However, there’s times like with Kuzu no Honkai where I’m not sure if I’m supposed to notice how boring and empty Mugi’s bedroom is and know that there’s a story reason for this and not because the animators had to do things on the cheap and didn’t have time to draw him a real bedroom.

So, which is it?

I think it is a reflection of Mugi’s personality, but, only time will tell.

edit – I just realized in episode 3, the time 20:19 shows up as well. Seems like an odd coincidence, I wonder what the reason is. And I wonder why an analog clock wasn’t used to simplify things.

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