Plot: Haruka’s mother has been getting harassed by Mrs. Todoka – the wife of her husband’s boss. As the abuse gets worse and worse, Haruka’s mother tries to commit suicide. Her father doesn’t believe her mother about any abuse and constantly tells her to get along with Mrs. Todoka in order to please his boss. At the end of her rope and worried about losing her mother, Haruka calls on Hell Girl.
Breakdown: Another one of the more intriguing stories in Hell Girl, this victim definitely deserves her fate. She is a completely evil irredeemable bitch from head to toe. Her daughter is also an irredeemable bitch from head to toe – like she and her friends are literally just mini-versions of their mothers, who are also bitches.
It’s interesting to get this revenge story from a different perspective. While we have had cases involving someone avenging another who has died, this is the first time we’ve had a case where the abuse is not directed at the client. Some of the abuse is, but what Haruka gets is small potatoes compared to what her mother goes through.
Mrs. Todoka basically makes a hobby out of harassing Haruka’s mother to ensure that she won’t talk about something she did. While some of the harassment is just verbal mudslinging and mocking, she implies that she’s being followed, sics her daughter and her friends on Haruka, possibly poisoned some of her food and later seemingly has her sexually assaulted (possibly raped) so that she can take pictures of her in the act and blackmail her with them. She even goes so far as the imply that, if she talks, she’ll have Haruka sexually assaulted too.
Haruka’s father is a complete asshole. It’s a bit understandable that he’d be unsympathetic during the more minor stages of abuse, but when she’s badly beaten and nearly died, all he focuses on is the fact that a strange man was knocking on the door and making a ruckus, causing rumors around town, and getting increasingly irritated that she’s not getting along with his boss’s wife. He even demeans her further and smacks her around when she’s still recovering from the assault.
There are several people who deserve the red string tug in this episode, if you ask me.
The reason Mrs. Todoka is doing this is because Haruka’s mother spotted her in a window having an affair. Even though she gave no indication that she was ever going to say a thing (and, ironically, I don’t think she ever would’ve thought about it had Mrs. Todoka not started harassing her) she started abusing her day in and day out.
Of course, this means you feel even worse for the client this time around. It’s very noble and brave of her to sacrifice her own afterlife for the sake of her mother’s safety and happiness, but you can’t help but feel bad, especially considering her dad is still an asshole.
This episode was also interesting in that, for some reason, Ai seemed expressive in it. She noticeably changes her usually stony expression twice in this episode – once when she was talking with Haruka and another when Mrs. Todoka called her a brat. In fact, she almost looked pissed when the brat comment was made. Ai is not an emotionless person by default. She does have feelings, she just has to keep them locked up. Why this particular case made her crack her mask a couple of times raises some questions.