I’ve asked the question before as to whether it is okay to enjoy anime when the characters behave questionably and definitely came to the decision that it was just fine (though you would have to accept that some other anime fans probably won’t enjoy watching the context particularly if it deals with triggering content). The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window continues to be an anime presenting what is a pretty unhealthy relationship between two characters and if that were being played off as sweet or normal I’d probably be a little creeped out but instead I’m wondering just how long this will play out before Mikado takes some kind of action.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that things will end happily ever after. All things considered it would probably be best if Mikado just ran a mile from Hiyakawa but I get the distinct impression they are somehow going to attempt to redeem his character. Would love to be proved wrong on that. But in the meanwhile, I’m really loving the build up in this story.
The Night Beyond The Tricornered Window Isn’t Your Standard Ghost of the Week Supernatural Tale
One of the things I’ve really enjoyed so far about The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window is the supernatural aspect of the story. As much as Mikado gets dragged along to look into various supernatural phenomenon with either Hiyakawa or in episode 2 with Keita, it isn’t a formulaic one mystery in each episode with little connecting the plots.
Instead some episodes have various scenarios and situations and episodes like episode 4 present us with a singular mystery, closely connected with our favourite cursing character Erika, and remains unresolved by the end.
This episode of The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window begins with Hiyakawa loaning out Mikado to the cop (detective?) we met back in the first episode, Hanzawa. Hiyakawa ominously declares there’s a technique he’d like to try out and sends them on their way.
And yes, his technique is as shady as you would expect. When Mikado calls him when they’ve arrived at their destination, Hiyakawa pretty much takes over Mikado’s body. Though they do an excellent job of having Mikado take on Hiyakawa’s mannerisms from that point and if it wasn’t so awful to think about the fact that Mikado was once again being body-jacked it would actually be pretty amusing.
The story of Mikado and Hanzawa investigating the shop which is a source of disappearances is overlapped by a parallel story of Erika and her teacher more or less laying a similar spell on another shop and making a ‘savings box’ for later (and nothing good is going to come out of that box).
I was wondering at first if we were seeing flashbacks to Erika cursing the same shop Mikado was at however that doesn’t quite work (unless there are some glaring continuity issues). To start with, the shop Mikado is at has a T-intersection directly in front of it whereas the shop Erika is sitting in front of has a playground across from it. I guess they could still have been the same shop but given they talk about previous places they’ve set up similar curses it kind of makes sense to think that Mikado and Hanzawa are investigating a previously established spell while Erika is setting up a new one.
Rather than deliver a definitive answer about whether or not Hiyakawa can overcome this particular curse or do anything about it, The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window goes a different direction. Hiyakawa actually muses about whether making his own curses to clean them up might be a better way to do business. And for once, Mikado gets actually angry.
This results in a weird moment where Mikado looks inside Hiyakawa and well other than being really purple I can’t tell you much about that. Though, given purple is the preferred colour for villains and evil energy in so many anime lets just assume something is not right there.
I said last week that The night Beyond the Tricornered Window gets better each episode and episode 4 continues that trend. Though, potentially it is because Hiyakawa is working through Mikado for so much of the episode rather than with them and so there’s a little less opportunity for truly cringe worthy dialogue.
You can read the full season review here.
Images from: The Night Beyond the Tricornered Window. Dir. D Iwanaga. Zero-G. 2021.
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