Mirai Nikki Redial – OVA

mirairedial

Ridley Scott intended for his cyberpunk/future noir film Blade Runner to have an ambiguous, non cut-and-dry ending, but the original American theatrical release in 1982, the studio insisted on a cheesy voiceover by Harrison Ford at the end, essentially pulling a “perfect happy ending” out of nowhere. The 2007 Final Cut, which we were lucky enough to experience on the big screen, ditched that voiceover and restored the open ending.

Why are we bringing up Blade Runner’s alternate endings? Because for us, this Future Diary OVA was that voiceover ending: tacked-on, cheesy, and unnecessary. We didn’t have a powerful need for a happy ending; the original one was fine. We were fine with Yuno and all of the others involved in the game returning to their normal lives, and the ambiguity of Yuno kinda sorta remembering someone. We were fine with Yukiteru brooding in the void for millennia with only Murmur and his brain for company.

Okay, so maybe we’re being a bit harsh. It’s been over two years since Mirai Nikki wrapped, and for many it was probably a thrill to see all the characters alive and well simply enjoying regular life. There were probably quite a few who relished Yuno picking at the scab in her brain until she finally ended up in the position to get her memories fully restored, enabling her to find Yukkii and reunite with him. And that’s fine. We’re just saying it wasn’t really our thing.

4_fair
Rating: 4
 (Fair)

Stray Observation: The strange realm in which Yuno races to the Murmur holding her memories looks a bit like Orphan’s Cradle, the final dungeon in FFXIII…only less pretty.

Mirai Nikki – 26 (Fin)

As she prepares to kill her, Yuno recalls how her past self used to dream of becoming a happy family. When she delivers the killing strike, it hits her father instead, shielding his daughter. Kurusu arrives and holds Yuno at gunpoint. In the Deus fragment, Yukiteru gradually realizes there’s something he needs to do; his parents support him. He breaks out of the fragment with the Second Murmur, who catches Kurusu’s bullet. Yukiteru tells God-Yuno to kill him, but she stabs herself instead, as neither of them could stab the other in the end. Amano wins the game, and the Third World begins. All the former diary holders, including the other Yukiteru, carry on normal, happy lives, but Yukiteru remains in a void for 10,000 years, unwilling to create a world without Yuno…

Mirai Nikki delivers a powerful and rousing finale, in which everything Yukiteru and Yuno did, and everyone they killed are restored to the time before the game touched them, and it seems to be for the better. The Yuno who sought to reset the game and court Yukkii once more decided on her own to stop the cycle, and while Yukiteru’s love and devotion to her played a part in it, witnessing her mother and father and the other her come together also had an effect. Her father was always away at work, her mother suffered from depression, and she took it out on Yuno until she snapped, locked them up, and let them starve to death. In short, this Gasai Yuno had bad luck. The cards just didn’t fall her way.

But something Yukiteru did in that fragment, whether it was intentional or just the result of his determination, gave Yuno and everyone else a second chance at life, including himself. In the new Third World, the third Yukiteru doesn’t even know Yuno, but Yuno seems troubled by something she forgot, while the Yukiteru who became a god wallows in self-pity in some void, alone save for Murmur…for ten millenia. After all those happy endings, seeing him end up there was equally troubling. So Yukiteru and Yuno are troubled, despite how things worked out – and you know what that means…their story doesn’t end here.


Rating: 4

Car Cameos: The cops show up in black-and-white Toyota Crown GRS180s, while Kurusu and Nishijima pull up in what could be a black Subaru Legacy B6 (judging from the headlamps), an interesting choice of detective’s car.

Mirai Nikki – 25

Yukiteru flees to the school with Minene and Past Yuno, but with her Yukkii diary it doesn’t take long for God Yuno and Murmur to find them. After warning Kurusu about his son’s heart condition, Minene duels with Murmur as Yuno chases Yukkii. Finally, she catches him in a Deus Fragment, an illusory world in which Yuno doesn’t exist and all of his dreams can come true; even his parents are alive and together. Yuno releases Murmur’s seal, making her infinitely more powerful, and Minene is killed. As Yukiteru loses himself in the fantasy world of the fragment, Yuno prepares to kill her defenseless past self…

Throughout this episode, God Yuno struggles with her feelings for the Yukiteru trying to save her from herself, but ultimately she fights them back. She reveals the truth that Yukiteru probably knows, but neither of them have brought up before: Yuno would have loved anyone if she became dependent on him – as she did Yukkii – just as Yukiteru would have loved anyone as long as she protected him. It’s harsh, but it’s true. Still, she doesn’t want to lose him, nor does she want to return to the second world, so locking him away is her answer.

In the fantasy world of the Deus fragment, she even dangles a pliable Wakana before him. Initially, he protests, but once she seals him in he seems to go along with things. After all the crap he’s been through, could he be ready to settle for the dream world Yuno’s given him? Is it better than death, or worse? At what point will he forget his world isn’t real? Minene is dead (again) thanks to a downright frightening Demon Murmur (after a stunningly-animated fight), so it would appear he’s fresh out of allies with godlike powers to free him. We’re very curious to see how this all comes to an end, and if the other diary holders – still alive in this world – still have a role to play beyond Yuno’s prey.


Rating: 3.5

Mirai Nikki – 22

Akise learns he’s just an observer created by Deus to collect information. He’s about to decompile into raw data when Kousaka finishes turning his diary into an apprentice future diary using Eighth’s phone. Deus releases him back to the real world, where briefly separates Yukiteru and Yuno, using his new Detective’s diary to predict their actions. Hinata warns Yukiteru that even when he’s a god, he won’t be able to bring anyone back. He doesn’t believe her, and kills her, Mao, and Kousaka to get to Eighth. Akise destroys Yuno’s phone, but she has another identical one, and she slits his throat, but before he dies he types a message into his phone that Yukiteru reads…

What if you’ve been working towards something, sacrificing your morals in the process, only to learn that that thing is impossible? Well, as in Yukiteru’s case, you’d probably be in denial, but believe it deep down. But having come so far and killed so many, what does he have to lose by killing a few more? It’s pretty obvious now that as a god, he could bring back the “flesh” of his dead parents and the friends he so quickly and thoughtlessly murdered, but he’ll never be able to bring back their souls. That sucks….

Akise Aru is revealed as another part of the game, and one that was supposed to remain neutral, at that. But he fell in love with Yukiteru, and managed to survive long enough to possibly deliver him the information that will save his life, even if Yukiteru doesn’t want to live anymore at this point. What would it matter to Yukiteru at this point if his Gasai Yuno is really a fake…or even a doppleganger of some kind, who wants to kill him? She’s already succeeded in killing everyone else in the game. We’re curious to see how the series will use the remaining four episodes, which seems like a lot to be left considering how much has happened.


Rating: 3.5

Mirai Nikki – 21

Uryuu will wait until Yukiteru kills Eleventh, but if he fails, she’ll kill him to avenge Nishijima. He manages to get the vault door where Eleventh is hiding open, but there is a second door he can’t open. Uryuu takes a shot at Yukiteru, but misses, and is losing blood fast. Yuki uses noise from his phone to misdirect her, then shoots her gun away. Dying, she admitting she likes Yukiteru and understands his situation, so when her heart stops, it sets off a bomb.

It doesn’t break through, but by then, Yuno has arrived, with access to the vault. Only Eighth stands in Yukiteru’s way, but Deus is starting to die, and may take the world with him. Akise, who is protecting Eighth for the moment, travels with her to the cathedral and asks if a god will really be able to fix everything bad that’s happened.

The pursuit of Eleventh gets pretty ridiculous – I mean, two bank vaults? Really? – and it costs the lives of Nishijima, Uryuu, and a lot of armed guards standing around while Yuno guts them. But Yuno gets him, using Yuno’s Gasai Bank access code to open the vault. But wait, if she’s not the real Gasai Yuno, how did she have the code? Was it just an illusion, as he thought when he saw her in there? Or is Eleventh really dead? We didn’t see him implode like Uryuu, after all. If he isn’t, that’s one more person Yukiteru has to kill to gain godhood, and he – and the series – are running out of time.

Huge mechanical orbs are apparating all over the city, threatening to swallow up everything (and at the pace they’re growing, we’d estimate it would only take a day or so to do so). Naturally, that pace will be slowed for dramatic effect, but Akise Aru’s question looms: how much power will the diary holder who wins actually hold? Was this all just a boondoggle so Deus could dump the world onto some other poor sap? Also surprisingly still up in the air: whether Yuno will really let Yuki kill her.


Rating: 3.5

Mirai Nikki – 01

Amano Yukitaru obsessively records everything he observes into a cell phone diary, while interacting with the rest of the world as little as possible. He then escapes into his imagination, where the god of time and space, Deus, grants him the future in the form of predetermined diary entries that foretell the future. When he reaches a “dead end”, he learns there are others with “future diaries” like him, including his classmate Gasai – and that the goal of Deus’ game is to kill all the other diary holders, in order to gain his throne.

A six-minute sneak peak of this show way back in December was enough to intrigue us. So, Future Diary is basically Death Note. When you have a future diary, your only threats are those with the same power as you. In Amano’s case, these seem to be people who aren’t just content to survive using their diaries as Life Cliff Notes; they want to become gods. Only one can, so there’s gonna be death. Of course, Death Note had a lot more setup, and it was a while before Light was aware of other death notes in existence; the pace of key revelations is much quicker here.

This episode purposefully got most of the technical stuff out of the way, set the stakes, and introduced the main players. Basically, Amano needs to Gorilla Glue his phone somewhere on his body, because it’s his life now. He’s been sought out by Gasai, who works with him to off a serial killer, but considering how creepy she acts around him and the fact she’s a rival, trusting her isn’t the best idea. I wonder how long their uneasy alliance will last. Shows that mess around with time in a clever and compelling way are always welcome. Here’s hoping this is one of them.


Rating: 3.5