Oh, the “Omnipotence Paradox” - - bringing me right back to Philosophy 101. We’ve already seen plenty of brains in jars already. How long before we get a Golden Mountain, now?
The show continues to strum on many of the same themes as MINORITY REPORT. “The seers are never wrong, but they don’t always agree.” I was always a little ambivalent when more , uh, serious-minded anime like ATTACK ON TITAN and DEATH NOTE started breaking out visual aides to explicate the more complicated details of traps in their plots (both physical and rhetorical). It works a little smoother here, though. Akane would have “holos” readily available to illustrate her deductions, and her orange men actually did give me a better idea of how Kamui’s trapping the Sibyll system.
I might as well invoke another Philip K. Dick book and bring up A SCANNER DARKLY, because this season’s made a real point of introducing doubles for our leads. (It’s done a shitty job of making you remember anybody’s name though, so bear with me).
Akane’s rival has been a tattle tale, a goody two shoes and every other negative descriptor you might apply to somebody with a clean hue. Now, by contrasting her reaction to the Sibyll system’s secret, we can see her as the worst kind of yes man. Likewise, Akane’s new partner is proving to be the real vision of the “bad boy” to make us better appreciate the more Byronic bad boy Kogami was. (If saving the cat is the quickest way to make you like a character, then choking the dog has to be the quickest way to make you hate him, no?).
Given the theme of this particular episode, I really think the crew’s making a conscious point about the arbitrary qualities of personality types here. That is, you have two pairs of characters fitting the exact same profile, but there’s a degree of chaos as to when they’re right, and when they’re wrong. Somebody can sound good on paper, but that has almost no bearing what they're actually like.