ef – a tale of memories – 12 [Final]

Renji is at a loss for what to do after Chihiro breaks off all ties to him and is unsure of what to do about her or his life.

Impressions:

Wow… I absolutely loved this episode. I’m just ecstatic about the way it ended. This show got to the point where the overall conclusion to Renji and Chihiro’s arc really would make this show spectacular for me or just alright. I ha thought of so many possibilities about how this could end. After the way last episode needed so many things could still happen, good and bad and I was a bit pessimistic about it because it seemed a lot of the happy endings were a bit of a stretch. However they managed to make it a happy ending while not saying everything is completely fine and cured. Having Chihiro remember Renji even after throwing away the pages was great. She isn’t cured completely so it’s not like it’s a miracle cure that was convenient, but it really fit. They said before that certain things important could be an exclusion in the memory thing. Having her remember him just fit perfectly I thought. They don’t’ have to restart their relationship or anything and because she remembered what happened and kind of realized something about it I really didn’t get the impression she would do it again. Even though Renji actually collecting pages didn’t help too much, it may benefit them a bit knowing exactly what happened, but for the most part it didn’t matter, it was still a breathtaking scene when the music was playing and he was putting all his energy into it. Really I couldn’t have possibly hoped for a better conclusion to their arc.

I absolutely loved the epilogue of this series. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I love epilogues in general, I think more shows need them. I am kind of comparing this epilogue to the one from Myself; Yourself since both shows just ended. It really was quite different as it took place maybe a month or so later or just a couple of days later instead of ten years. I think this one was great though. It showed the situation and setting that everyone is in now that all these events are done while leaving mystery as to what exactly the future holds. It was really nice to just see more closure on everyone, not just Renji and Chihiro. It felt like before this episode Kei’s character didn’t have as much closure as it needed, but this helped. It really was a great end for all.

I do have to mention Himura a bit, because he was one character that was very interesting throughout the series while at the same time not getting any real focus. From the little I’ve read of the game his role is bigger. They explain what his relationship is with Yuko, the nun girl, as far as I can tell. I don’t get into it too much, as it technically isn’t any part of the anime and that’s what I’m talking about, but it was still a bit settling and nice to see him get a scene at the end even though it may not be apparent what it actually means. He was never a bad person but he was obviously troubled by his own past so he was a bit negative, still he gave warnings and advice that were for the most part accurate. Anyways, it was nice seeing him get closure even if they don’t really say what that closure means.

Final Words:

I’m not really sure where to begin when talking about this show overall. This has been one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. I have heard a couple of people say they dislike the show and have even heard that some people hate it and I don’t understand that. However honestly, I don’t really care. This show has been amazing for me and the amount that it has drawn me in and made me care about the characters is rivaled by few shows, if any. I like it to the point that I don’t give a damn about people who dislike it, they are entitled to their opinions and I’m not saying they are wrong, but this show has had such an impact on me that nothing will sway that. Really I think the best example of how much this show has hit me have just seen some of my reactions to what has happened in several episodes. I can only remember a few times when I have watched something and just been speechless. I had to pace back and forth for several minutes after watching an episode to just process the magnitude of what had happened, and few shows have made me do that before. Just the fact that it was able to strike that kind of a reaction in me shows to me how much I loved this show.

One thing I do have to say about the show is that it was interesting to see the series, for the most part, have two separate stories going on. There are hundreds of series that have subplots or have side characters that get their own story and so on but I haven’t really seen a show like this before. For the most part the two stories that they had going were completely separate and had nothing to do with each other. Sure there were connections, Chihiro and Kei were twins after all and they were each in a different story of the two that were there but that never really made too much of a difference in what was going on. I had hopped that there would be a bigger connection between the stories but throughout most of the series they didn’t have anything to do with each other and they could very well have said that Chihiro and Kei didn’t know each other and had nothing to do with each other and not too much would have changed. The only time their connection really mattered was when Kei was blaming herself for Chihiro’s accident, and because of that guilt she was unable to act as she wanted to really, but even that wasn’t really emphasized much so it never became important. Still, regardless of what they could have done differently it was defiantly interesting to see the way the two stories were handled at the same time, as they both still had similar traits in the way the drama and tragedy was effecting everyone involved.

I don’t really know what more to say about this show overall. As I said I love it so it’s hard to say much without saying something mindless like this aspect of the show was particularly blah blah blah. I haven’t seen a drama/tragedy anime like this…ever. I’ve seen shows of this genre before but they are always handled differently. This wasn’t some mindless harem romance, this wasn’t some multi layered shoujo romance, this was something rather different. It was sad and tragic while at the same time not being a completely depressing make you want to kill yourself downer. It was very interesting to watch and I think it was very unique in the way it handled the characters dealing with these tragic situations.

9 thoughts on “ef – a tale of memories – 12 [Final]”

  1. I think the ultimate achievement of ef a tale of memories is bringing that visual novel flair and style to the anime format. That’s why we’ve never seen something like this before…

  2. “Having Chihiro remember Renji even after throwing away the pages was great. She isn’t cured _completely_ so it’s not like it’s a miracle cure that was convenient, but it really fit.” She has not been cured at all. She simply said that she could not stop thinking of Renji and what happend, so that her memories of him have been constantly refreshed. Its like reading her diary before going to sleep. “I couldn’t not think about you for thirteen hours”. IMO this is even better than any other ending one could get.

    “Even though Renji actually collecting pages didn’t help too much, it may benefit them a bit knowing exactly what happened, but for the most part it _didn’t matter_ […]” It does matter very much. What hes Himura said multiple times? (from top of my head) “There are inevitabilities, accidents and things one does” Renji could not hope for a miracle to happend, he was told by Kuze to realize his dream himself. His dream was Chihiro. Therefore to finally realize his dream in his life, loose all insecurities (like fainting in front of her before), it was his duty to prove his determination to stay with her. Even Chihiro played dump. Basing on the cannot forget theory, she recognized him at once at the train station. I think she simply wanted to know whether he simply accepted his fate or was going to fight for her like a knight for his princess, which is Renjis dream.

    Oh well, definitely a *great* anime.

  3. I’m not saying that collecting the pages was useless at all really, just that they weren’t needed for Chihiro to remember and think about him. They were of course important.

    I think as far as her being “cured” is a matter of how you view the word in this context. I don’t mean to say that her problems are gone. The reason she remembers Renji is because she is always thinking of him, whether she reads the diary or not. I didn’t mean to say that the actual physical problem with her brain or whatever is gone just regarding Renji. But to be unable to not think of him is in a way a step towards a “cure.” Not an actual cure granted. If she was knocked unconscious for thirteen hours she may forget him (If she still doens’t then it would be a real cure, but that “what if” doesn’t really matter but even the point of something being so important to her that she can’t not think about it is a cure in a way. (This also gives a reason for the pages to be important, if she does have some accident and is knocked unconscious, without the pages it would be rather difficult)

  4. “I’m not saying that collecting the pages was useless at all really, just that they weren’t needed for Chihiro to remember and think about him. They were of course important.” Then i have misunderstood you ;)

    “But to be unable to not think of him is in a way a step towards a “cure.” Not an actual cure granted.” Yes you are of course right. But i wanted to point out that the cure, which was portrayed by breaking chains, was something metaphorical and not some miracle, which would not fit the spirit the series. ef was presented in a very ethreal way which reminds me of AIR, but its actual story is very down to earth. Therefore the ending fits perfectly without any superfluous miracles.
    I most certainly misunderstood this part of your post, since we seem to agree on that matter ;)

  5. I found it a really touching moment when Chihiro admitted remembering him. “13 hours is a long time” such a great line for that episode. When you care about someone that much it seems crazy to expect them to forget about them for that long a time. So in the end she couldn’t follow through because she cared so much and kept dwelling back to the memory of him.

    Now this was an epilogue I liked. Wasn’t too far in the future or anything and just handled how everyone was doing in their lives. Miyako is going to school again and doing just fine it seems so her future is bright. Hiro is resting himself when he needs to and so not overworking his wrist which will increase the longevity of his career.

    Liked how they handled Kei. Didn’t have time to dwell too much into a romance with her aside from what was going on with Hiro during the series. But this leaves a taste that things may be move along with Kyosuke down the road.

    Overall would have to say this made the Fall Season for me. Did like how they had characters related in a sense but disconnected from each other in how things were developing. They had a pretty realistic view on some things aside from some spiritual nun thing that has its own story. Issues like Chihiro’s condition weren’t changed by some miracle and life goes on. Really liked many of the characters and honestly cared about what was going to happen with them.

  6. I felt the ending was just a little too tidy…or at least it felt that way, though it worked logically. But this is still a very, very worthy show, my favorite of the year.

  7. “I couldn’t not think about you for thirteen hours”

    I think that line needs to go down in history as one of the best in anime. It’s so far up there it’s almost scary to think about its rank. Putting joking lines aside, I think it’d make the top ten of all time.

    Or maybe I’m just that moved by the show.

  8. Reading your blog made me smile. Your reactions were the same as mine. The HOLY SHIT at episode 7, the WOW at episode 9 and 10, the OH NO at episode 11, the manly tears of joy (well, maybe thats just me) at the end of episode 12 etc etc. Granted, I dont get up and pace, thinking about the anime, but I do spend hours upon hours reading anything I can find on the net about it, and ef has wayyyy too little coverage :(

    Just a note to thank you for blogging this (and blogging it the way you did), it makes me feel normal again, because ive been so hyped up about this series for the past few days now that I was beginning to think if I was hyping about nothing and it wasnt that good anyway.

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