Welcome to Winter Watch, a look at the latest anime season. Among the many shows being broadcast, Nisemonogatari is perhaps the most anticipated one as it is a direct sequel to fan favorite Bakemonogatari.
Episode 2: Karen Bee, Part 3
Summary: Koyomi meets a mysterious man outside of Suruga's house and eventually gets kidnapped by Hitagi.
Air Date: Jan. 21, 2012
Run Time: 24:10
Warning: This article contains spoilers. We recommend watching the episode herefirst.
This episode kicks off with Koyomi wrapping up his visit with Suruga, who informs him about the intricacies of all of the women in his love life. While leaving her house, Koyomi meets a mysterious man named Kaiki Deishu who seems to be completely engulfed in his own world yet eerily familiar with Suruga. Deciding that it would be best to not get involved with him, Koyomi goes elsewhere and eventually comes across Hitagi walking down the street. After being ignored, he decides to follow her but finds himself getting chewed out about their relationship and the number of girls he's interacted with that day. During the conversation, Koyomi mentions his encounter with Kaiki and blacks out. Koyomi awakens in the kidnapping scene from Karen Bee Part 1and is informed by Hitagi that she has kidnapped him in order to prevent him from further interacting with Kaiki, who is dangerous. In the middle of the scene, Koyomi receives a distressing text message from Tsukihi and breaks free from his restraints in order to check up on her.
With the introduction of Kaiki, the series is finally pulling together something resembling a traditional storyline and plot other thanwhat wacky adventures will Koyomi get into this time? Luckily, this hasn't come at the expense of the dialog, which is still as sharp as ever and hasn't lost its sporadic nature. I noticed an ever so slight dip in the animation quality at times, but the stylized visuals and shot placement are still by far the best I've seen from any series in recent memory and more than make up for any less than amazingness seen. Kaiki's scenes in particular stands out to me as some of the most visually striking in the series, with his figure constantly in the shadow, often becoming pure black. When put against the pure red sky and the soundtrack of a solo violin and low piano chords, this guy practically oozes evil and deception from every pore and every frame. I really can't stress how visually impressive this series is and how much it enhances the other positive. The closest thing to it that I can think of is Redline, where so much care and concern seemingly goes into every aspect of every frame that I can't imagine it working otherwise, or at least not being anywhere near as entertaining as it is.
I'm starting to sound like a broken record here. Every week I say how amazing this show is, how funny and witty the dialog is, and how it's so pretty it will make your eyes bleed, yet every week I come away feeling Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs about the series and I am continually impressed at how every episode manages to capture that of-so-elusive best episode ever feeling. If you like anime at all, you owe it to yourself to check this episode and this series out!