Toonami Airdate: September 19th, 2015
I think someone might have replaced my Zephyrhills with bong water last night.
The episode starts with Michiko and Hana crashing the motorcycle unexpectedly. It turns out Michiko has some kind of fever, but she’s reluctant to seek any help. Hana checks the two of them into a hotel, meeting a rather odd woman who acts rather friendly towards Hana. She goes out into town to find out about getting a job in the area so she can cover expenses for the hotel and medicine, and to save some cash, she takes Michiko to see Dr. Deus, a doctor of extremely questionable legitimacy. Deus begins to treat Michiko, who seems resistant to it at first, and when Hana attempts to look inside, she sees a rather absurd sight: bright psychedelic lights come on as Deus starts shouting random preachy nonsense, and then appears to pull a fish out of Michiko’s abdomen. After the “surgery”, Deus attempts to collect his payment, which as it turns out is more expensive than initially agreed on due to some hidden expenses in the contract he had Hana sign. Later on, Hana’s seen heading off to do some work, namely helping a man on a farm catch bandits attempting to steal his crops. During the night, she tries to call Michiko who doesn’t answer, and then she sees the bandits on the farm. She alerts the old man to their presence, but apart from being able to chase them away, he can’t successfully stop them from taking a few vegetables, so he decides not to pay Hana with money, but with some vegetables instead.
She tries to pay Deus with these, but he angrily refuses and demands the money as soon as possible, or else he’ll threaten legal action against her. Back at the hotel, Hana visits the weird lady from earlier and asks her to take care of Michiko while she goes out that night. The woman goes to Michiko’s room, where she happens to be watching some kind of sexy romantic medical drama starring an actor who looks very much like Hiroshi.
She breaks the TV just as not-Hiroshi is about to partake in a bountiful feast of love nectar, and then she leaves the hotel to find Hiroshi, having some
bizarre trippy hallucinations along the way. Meanwhile, Hana sneaks onto the farm she was working at earlier, but she gets caught and chased away by the man and his dog and heads back to the hotel. She meets up with the weird lady again and asks about Deus, and that’s when we learn the fairly obvious truth about him being a fraud: specifically, he took up the whole evangelical alternative medicine thing as a way to try paying off some gambling debts. Furious, Hana goes out and finds a pipe to kick Deus’ ass, but she sees that Michiko is already doing that. Still in a delirious state, Michiko then stumbles around for a bit and rambles incoherently before finally passing out, and Hana then takes her back to the hotel. The episode ends the next morning with Hana promising that she’ll get real help for Michiko.
This episode’s somewhat of a detour from the main plot, but it is pretty solid to watch. The main highlight is Michiko’s weird-ass fever dream in the second half, with the kind of haunting, weird, pseudo-symbolic imagery that looks like something ripped straight out of a Satoshi Kon project. Meanwhile, Deus makes for a good despicable asshole that’s really easy for you to hate, combining the annoying money-grubbing insincerity of televangelists with the misleading medical expertise of people like Dr. Oz. I will admit it’s somewhat ridiculous that Hana goes to this man for help even though he has “obviously full of shit” written all over him, but it didn’t bother me too much. The decision makes perfect sense considering how poor the two of them are and how few options they really have to rely on. Also, seeing Michiko kick the crap out of him is really satisfying to see. I give this episode 8 fish ripped from the abdomen/10.