Yami Shibai 2 Episode 7 – Capsule Toy Machine
Plot: A businessman is having poor luck at his job when he wanders by an old man who seems really entranced by a nearby capsule toy machine. The next day, he walks by the machine again, though the man is gone. He wonders what is in the machine to make the old man so interested so he gives it a try. However, the price for getting a toy is much steeper than it seems.
Breakdown: For someone who adores nostalgia, this episode was pretty damn creepy to me. Hell, those capsule toy machines are nostalgic in their own right. I remember using the machines by our local supermarket and getting superballs and little action figures and temporary tattoos; they’re pretty neat for some pocket change. And, really, what down on their luck 20-something wouldn’t decide to have a nice passing fling with nostalgia and spend some change on a capsule toy?
I really like the twist that they added to this machine, not just in the items within the capsules but also in the price for obtaining these goodies. I’m not sure if there’s really a message here besides try to live in the now and think of the future instead of losing yourself in the past because your life may pass you by in the meantime, which is a good lesson, but then again you have to wonder if the people using the machine aren’t ending up under some sort of spell after that first toy. You’d think they would notice what is happening to them after even the first toy pops out.
All in all, probably the best episode of the second season so far. Not downright scary, but pretty freaky, especially if you are one who gets lost in nostalgia.
Episode 8 – Farewell Confessional
Plot: A man has returned to the country to be with his extended family after a relative passes away. However, this is no normal funeral. In this funeral, the deceased loved one stays in another room while mourners go in one after another revealing one secret to them. It is said that the secret will ascend to heaven and the sin will ultimately be forgiven. Ken has never been to one of these funerals before, and while he hasn’t seen this man in a long time, he does have one secret to reveal.
Breakdown: This one is also interesting but ultimately predictable from the instant that they explain what this funeral really is. The concept of revealing one secret to the deceased to alleviate both you and the deceased from the burden is a pretty believable and good concept for this short to have. Even if it does seem just like hell for the dead person. Sure a lot of the secrets are benign, but some of them are just things I would never want to hear even while dead.
And this confessional seems pointless since everyone on the other side can clearly hear the secret. Hardly anyone is really whispering and their only barricade is a paper wall…..
Which leads us to the main premise of this story. Spoilers ahoy!
Ken is all awkward and doesn’t know what to say to the man since it’s been so long since he’s seen him that he really doesn’t know if he was keeping any secrets from him. He finally remembers one thing and hesitates a bit since it seems too big to confess, but decides to do it anyway. The secret is muttered half the time, but the main idea is that he did something or other that somehow caused the deceased’s dog to die in an accident. He apologizes for it and starts to walk away when the cloth on the body’s face moves and the candles die out. He brushes it off as the wind and walks away, and the dead guy springs up in a rage that he caused his dog’s death and that’s the end.
I only decided to explain this full out because I have to compare Ken’s secret to another mourner’s. Another man’s secret was that he had an affair with the deceased’s wife and is the real father of one of their children.
…….This secret doesn’t warrant coming back from the dead in a rage and attacking the guy but accidentally causing the death of a dog does? Don’t get me wrong, I adore dogs, I have three of them and I’d be pretty pissed with anyone who’d hurt them, accidental or otherwise, but really? And at least Ken had the decency to apologize for what he did. This guy was just all ‘remember when your wife got pregnant? That was me. Shh’
Well, at the very least we can hope Ken is fast enough to run away from a corpse through a paper wall. Or maybe one of his relatives would have the decency to lop his head off. This could be a common farewell confessional occurrence, I dunno.