Kuzu no Honkai (Scum’s Wish): Season 1/ Episode 10 “Fragile and Empty” – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)
In an episode which largely is focused on understanding Akame, you also begin to understand Mugi past his likable façade. Episode Focus: Foreign Intimacy (Akane, Kanai, and Mugi) It has been well established that Akane lives for the jealousy of women and lust of men, but why? Why is it that she lives off of…
In an episode which largely is focused on understanding Akame, you also begin to understand Mugi past his likable façade.
Episode Focus: Foreign Intimacy (Akane, Kanai, and Mugi)
It has been well established that Akane lives for the jealousy of women and lust of men, but why? Why is it that she lives off of that? Well, with Kanai and Mugi accepting what she accepts, when called out by Takuya, to be her slutty ways, it seems it is because she perhaps never knew love but solely lust. Making it where with Kanai being kind, wanting more so her companionship than her sex and Mugi really wanting to just get to know her and be with her, it is startling. Startling to the point she is losing her power dynamic and is being caught off guard more and more.
One of the things I enjoy the most about this show is how it likes to complicate its characters. Akane, since the beginning, has come off as a type of villain. Yet, like with Noriko, in time there were layers added and in this episode, you come to realize that Akane has more issues than initially led on. At first, you may think of her as shallow, needing women’s jealous and the attention of men. However, the truth is, she doesn’t know how to be loved and give so in return.
To me, Akane is used to men like Takuya who just want to have sex with her or do whatever is considered cordial, so that she’d be willing to have sex. Making for men like Kanai to seem foreign. Why would he only have sex with her once and not pursue it again? Is it her? Is it him? He still goes on dates with you but it never ends in the hotel? Plus, one thing Akane notes is how she feels she is putting all the effort in. Which, technically, she was in order to add Hanabi to the list of women and girls jealous of her, but something has changed.
Now, it seems she maybe falling for Kanai. This seems especially true since when Takuya, rather publicly, calls her a slut in front of Kanai and really pushes the point, she thinks it is over with Kanai and is relieved. She even makes sure he knows she enjoys sex with multiple men and the jealousy of the women who like them. However, he accepts her. With that, you can feel a shock and shift. As if no one has ever accepted her for who she is or even was willing to tolerate it.
This is a problem since it seems Akane lives in a world of power dynamics. Now, based off who we have seen Akane with, it does seem she usually sleeps with men who are either shy, younger than her, or else would lust over her. Thus giving her all the power since she is the one chased and pursued, she has no emotional investment. However, Kanai forces her to change up. She has to pursue him, she had to initiate sex with him and what once started as a means to pick with Hanabi has broken through the surface and perhaps bloomed into something genuine.
Same thing goes for her relationship with Mugi. This young kid, who has a crush on her, seemed like just another person to validate her and another means of irritating Hanabi. Yet, there is something about his passion which throws her off guard. The idea he is jealous she is with other men and wants to prove himself as the only one she needs to be with. In a way, his passion seems as attractive as the sense of normalcy Kanai provides. Albeit Kanai doesn’t bring the normalcy of being pursued, but the reciprocation he gives is what makes their relationship normal.
Refocusing on Mugi, with the way she sometimes acts with him, especially when he catches her off guard, like when they were in the classroom, it makes you wonder has anyone ever been violent with her?. For, so it seems, Akane is very open about damn near being an escort and you’d have to imagine that there were men before who wanted her to themselves. So while I would love to romanticize her shock when it comes to Mugi’s advances, I feel the need to remind myself that the shock could come from flashbacks of a violent lover. Especially since, just for a moment, it almost seemed she wanted someone she couldn’t have and I worry the one she couldn’t have she threw herself to and he swatted her away.
Which, to me, is saying something. In one episode, the most despicable character on the show becomes someone you worry about. Just because she opened up a bit. It leads me to wonder if this vulnerability is just a trap or a real thing.
Subplot 1: Is Mugi At The Crossroads and Seeing a Path Which Would Make Him Like Akane? (Mugi)
Being with Akane is revealing to Mugi that when it comes to Noriko, maybe even Hanabi, he has done the same things Akane has. Perhaps with Noriko especially, he used her love for his own validation but caught himself before doing what was needed to have her hook, line, and sinker. Leading him to further understand Akane, though still unsure if he is capable of changing her.
I thought this was noteworthy just because it makes Mugi seem less like a nice guy. Granted, him standing up Hanabi isn’t forgotten, but I do feel with them going back and forth it seems more routine than a big to do. So him noting how he recognizes that he is capable of becoming like Akane was something.
I don’t want to be hated by someone I love.
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