Kanon Remake – 18

Yuuichi tries to throw a birthday party for Shiori the day before her birthday, trying to invite Kaori as well to acknowledge her sister and spend time with her before her final minutes tick away.

Impressions:

Wow. That episode was amazing. They did a great job at the end of Shiori’s arc. Whether it was better ending then Toei’s is discussed below, but this was truly one amazingly. The scene with the snow and the fountain just made the scene beautiful, adding to the plot and characters so much. I just was not expecting this ending. I was expecting something like Toei’s version. Because Shiori dies in the game in all arcs except her own, I was expecting it to be different then the game in order to keep Shiori alive. The only way they kept Shiori alive in the game hasn’t been introduced yet; however I still held hope they would do what Toei did and just say a miracle happened or something. There’s a chance she is alive, but wow did the end still surprise me.

Ok, here is my breakdown on the possibilities of Shiori being alive or dead. It isn’t for sure either way, and that’s a fact. It doesn’t matter for a second what happened in the other version or the game, this anime has a chance so far for her to be alive or dead. The ending made it seem like she died just because of the tone of things and how Yuuichi responded to the note Shiori left. However, in one way that just makes this ending and episode work better. There wasn’t enough emotion in other places to make this arc work as well without this kind of supposed ending. It would make things much more real and deep for her to die though. Makoto really disappeared, with Mai still alive the way for this show to keep a tragedy flow for everyone would e her dieing. It would make more logical sense. However this show is also about miracles. Even though Makoto disappeared her existence itself was a miracle, Mai’s powers and surviving her stab was a miracle, so where’s Shiori’s miracle? The main thing that makes me think Shiori could still be alive is the theme of miracles. I mean, in the game if you followed Shiori’s arc and she lived, Yuuichi didn’t find out about it until spring. That leaves a perfect chance for Shiori to still be alive in this series but only appear at the end, still keeping the emotion and drama of the aftermath of her death. However, on the side of her dieing there is the preview, which doesn’t favor her survival. It seems like Yuuichi is telling people about her death, and there is a scene where he is crying with Shiori’s shawl on. Not only does that point to him crying because he knows about her death, but he has her shawl. The only hope is that Shiori left that behind somewhere and he picked it up. Otherwise he would have had to get it from Kaori somehow and if he did that he would know for sure if she was alive or not, and if she was he wouldn’t be crying. However one big thing that points to Shiori being alive are those scenes he imagined of Shiori and Kaori spending time together. It was in the spring because of the lack of snow, and they weren’t things that had already happened because it was all the things they dreamed like eating together, so it almost seemed like things that were going to happen. All in all, it boils down to there is still a chance she is alive. Next episode will be a real determiner in that as it could easily diminish all but one percent of a chance her surviving. Because, as I said before this is all about miracles. Even if she dies and they bury her and Kaori tells Yuuichi she is dead, vitals nothing, proclaimed dead, she’s six feet under or they cremated her, there is still a slight chance of her coming back somehow some way, however that isn’t very likely. Still, that isn’t the only hope she has so far. Next episode can either leave us with that one percent, or with the same amount of chance we have now, just waiting for the end to find out for sure.

Honestly, it’s hard to say which version is sadder. The endings were different in more of a sense then her surviving or not. In the Toei version Kaori never came to any birthday party, didn’t make up and accept her sister there or anything like that. That came later; she visited her and Yuuichi at the fountain near the end. Honestly, for absolute certain the Toei version gave Kaori a MUCH MUCH MUCH greater and more emotional part. Most of the old series tragedy and sadness about Shiori’s arc came from the relationship between Kaori and Shiori. In the end, what made it really sad and amazingly great was how they were both crying into each others arms saying how Kaori wants her to be her sister and Shiori was crying that she didn’t want to die, she wanted to do all those things she dreamed of and Kaori said that’s all she has wanted all along too. Yuuichi played a very little part in the end of Shiori’s arc, at least what made it sad. For certain Kaori and Shiori’s relationship was much better portrayed, or at least at the end, in the old version. Not to say which was overall sadder, but the thing that made Toei’s version sad was the sisterly relationship between them and both of them wanting to be together and not wanting her to die. Whether it’s like the game or not is irrelevant, it was done well.

Now, actually deciding what version was sadder is hard. It’s almost a tie really and it truly is hard to compare because of how different the endings are. In the Toei version it was obvious she lived, at least for a while longer. The next day and week I think Shiori was fine and Kaori said the doctors were reporting she had made a turn around and it seemed obvious that she would survive. In Kazahana, an apparently non canon but still interesting final episode (retelling kind of) it showed the spring and Shiori was alive so basically, she survived. However, even though she survived it was still sad because of the aforementioned dealings between Shiori and Kaori. This version’s sadness stems from the thought and possibility that she actually did die. I talked about this more above but it seemed, at least at that moment that Shiori had died. That’s the impression I got from the end and Yuuichi’s expression. I’m sure we will find out much more next episode but there’s a chance she survived but not much, but I already talked about that. This version’s true tragedy came from the high possibility that despite all they had talked about, all the talkings of future plans for Shiori, all of her getting over adversity, finally being acknowledged by her sister, after all of that, all of those accomplishments, she still dies. That is truly tragic and if Shiori does indeed die it is devastating. The slight hope and possibility that she may still be alive doesn’t even absolve the tragedy and emotion that came from this end.

I’m at least glad they included the attempted suicide in this episode. I was a bit worried that they weren’t going to show it and as I’ve said before, and someone nicely commented, her attempted suicide is rally big in the story. It makes things more then her struggle to be happy with her condition, it makes things truly much darker and more about her being able to live with herself and her condition, being able to survive long enough to face her fate. That made things interesting and so much more real; it made it less of a fairy tale situation.

Spoilers:

Can’t really say anything here without needlessly saying things that happen, next up Nayuki and Ayu’s arc.

4 thoughts on “Kanon Remake – 18”

  1. I might up eating my words after saying this, but in this episode you saw Shiori doing the Mole Whacking game again, but now getting a score of 5, with Kyuuichi looking suprised. I saw that as a “Shiori starts to actually fight to stay alive” or “on the way to recovery” hint, may just be wishful thinking though, but KyoAni does slap hints here and there in one’s face.

    In the preview though, Kitagawa is the one who mentions Shiori with a rather absent or sad face and quiet tone.. so that has me worried a bit. Same goes for the scene with the scarf you mentioned, but I also have the feeling that he went looking for her and found the scarf.. and took his conclusion.

    Speculation, speculation.

  2. Like I said in Omni’s entry about the episode, this one just gave us a wait-and-see stance. But like I said, I am hoping that very slim chance Shiori will live. But if she doens’t, then “que sera sera.” Nice analysis on the story though, considering you both followed the two versions.

  3. Her survival would be consistent with the structure of her story so far and Kanon’s take on miracles; I would be very surprised if KyoAni killed her off. Kanon is about miracles happening when there is a sufficient desire for them, or when a price has been paid for them, and Shiori’s story is fundamentally about the process whereby Shiori gains the desire for that miracle, going from a state of apathy and depression to admitting to wanting more out of life. I would be very, very surprised if Shiori did not survive.

  4. Additional point: The positioning of Yuuichi’s hands whilst he is wearing Shiori’s shawl in the next episode preview would seem to indicate that he is praying; the logical conclusion if such is the case is that Shiori is not dead, but rather is fighting for her life (perhaps hospitalised?).

    Jun’s facial expression when saying ‘Shiori-chan’ is additionally not consistent with the manner in which you’d expect him to act if Shiori had actually died; as far as we know, he hasn’t been informed of Shiori’s illness, yet he doesn’t appear shocked. Perhaps Shiori’s just been admitted to hospital for a difficult operation; this would explain the concrete birthday deadline.

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