Well, that was kind of convoluted.
Fitting to the testimony of you lunatics, the fuller answer about Ms. Mine’s origin that's divulged in this episode does, in fact, move away from the Weapon X scenario it seemed to be angling for.
Wait - - actually, it sort of doesn’t. Like Wolverine, Fujiko had her own adventuring career before she ran into this cabal, and their meddling subsequently improved her skills and exacerbated her hang-ups with a whole mess of fake, implanted memories. The difference here seems to be that those memories came from the repressed desires of some mutated child and a cross-dresser with a SCOOBY DOO villain's mask (the precise circumstances are too messy for me to even wrap my head around, let alone write about.)
When I first watched THE SECRET OF MAMO recently, I thought it was unusual to involve Lupin III in such a trippy sci-fi fantasy plot. However, if this series is really supposed to be hewn closer to the comics, then maybe it wasn’t all that unusual. Maybe CASTLE OF CAGLIOSTRO was actually the unusual Lupin adventure since it didn’t have anything supernatural going on it?
Even while I don’t have that extensive of an experience to draw upon with LUPIN III, this final arc absolutely stinks of “retcon” and I question why it was necessary. Wouldn’t it have been enough to simply present a more adult-oriented LUPIN III toon that made Fujiko the protagonist and featured a provocative art style? Did it need some too-clever backstory for this girl? It seems about as necessary as revealing that Lupin actually came from another planet or some such.
I don’t know - - this is has been a phenomenal series for the most part, and the ending isn’t even that awful, but it all still ends on an uninspiring note. Maybe it’s because I have such a distaste for the child assassin genre (GUNSLINGER GIRL, REQUIEM FOR THE PHANTOM, etc.) that even the mere hint of one turns me off?
Maybe I’ll get into deeper detail of my opinions on this series in a future Vice Pit segment.
Watch this episode, "The Woman Called Fujiko Mine (Part 2)" here and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.