EP1 really is indeed an EP radically different from all the others. The magic hasn’t been truly introduced yet, which both makes it the most straight-forward of the EPs, and the one standing out from the others as a true gameboard as it would be witnessed from ‘inside’.
It gives us the proper time to get to know the cast of (already considerable) characters; it starts off, as others have mentioned, slice-of-life-y, but you quickly start realizing things won’t stay all suns and daisies for long when the argument over the inheritance comes up in full.
And that is before letters arrive and bodies start dropping.
But god yes, as Karifean said, once you know The Truth, it becomes so incredibly obvious as to what is really going on–but to me, that only makes rereading it more fascinating.
So, I finally started my reread in earnest with a light bit of two-hour reading. Annnnnd, herewego! /Mario
Kinzo and BEATORIIIIIIIIIIICHEEEEEE! And awesome OP. Man, I forgot that Battler straight-up talks about his dad’s masturbation habits to Kyrie and her keeping that shit in line. WHAT EVEN, BATTLER.
Speaking of, somehow I never realized until just now how incredibly convenient it is for Kyrie that Ange stayed behind this conference. After all, as far as she knows, it’s only Ange that’s her biological child, so it’s only her she’d bother to protect from the killings to come. Though iirc she did once say she never loved Ange and only saw her as a way to bind Rudolf to her (but I guess that’d still mean she’d have an interest in keeping her alive), and it does imply it being fully premeditated even before even arriving on the island, unlike the clusterfuck we saw in EP7, for example. Could she have somehow found the gold the previous year, and then started making her plans for the next conference? Hmm…
I’m occasionally switching to the new sprites to check them, and holy crap, Maria’s eyes are absolutely ENORMOUS when she’s first introduced. I do kind of like her new sprite overall, though.
Oh, I forgot that hope played at the beginning. Always loved that song since I heard all the variations of it from Higurashi, to the point I actually learned to play it on the piano <3
Did that last line tug at anyone else’s heartstrings as well, considering, y’know… Maria? ;;
When Rudolf, Kyrie and Battler talk about Battler not wanting to be like his parents, and Rudolf saying he’s already pissed Battler’s nose looks like his… I was looking at the new sprites, and holy shit, but Battler’s nose looks almost identical to Kyrie’s. It’s actually reasonably apparent in the original sprites too; I’d never noticed it before.
“Uu-. Battler, all weak.”
“Yeah, Battler, all weak… I wanna die on land, not in the ocean or the sky…”
Aha. Ahaha. Ahahahahahaha. Yeah. ;____;
Loved the scene with Maria and misfortune, and, of course, “Uu-.”
And when they’ve finally arrived on Rokkenjima, I can’t help but appreciate the slow introduction of the island, how we’re led through it, almost as if it’s a character in its own right. The whole bit with the rose garden, Maria’s sadness for that one wilting rose, and hope playing throughout. I find it a really sweet scene.
Cue Kanon arriving, and him being introduced to Battler. Christ, all the little things in this scene, Kanon’s extreme silence even for him, his not wanting to give his age, his having trouble lifting the heavy fertilizer… And after Battler picks up the fertilizer in his stead, is Kanon’s stuttering a bit of Shannon shining through?
What must Sayo have felt during, and especially after this scene, after her thousand-year torture? “Quick, I must go change, he must remember Shannon, he must remember me, he must remember her, of course he’d remember her–”
The cousins all joking around and everyone being kind to each other in the guest house for once is so bittersweet, knowing what’s to come. I love all the little foreshadowing that’s being thrown around, though. If you know The Truth, all of it really smacks you in the face.
Battler, you are a dick and I hate you. ;;
We meet Shannon for the first time, and basically the first thing that’s (non-verbally, but nevertheless) said to her is ‘you’ve fucked up’. Poor girl. That entire scene is so damn tense, with basically everything that’s said darkening the atmosphere. Thank god for Rudolf and Hideyoshi having mercy on Shannon, tbh. And Kanon, for restoring some of her courage afterwards.
just kidding lol that scene is fucking heartbreaking as I suspect all scenes that involve some combo of shannon/kanon/beato will be from now on. And oh, that foreshadowing. ‘…Truly, the Master is a man with many sins on his conscience… Why didn’t he realize that such a trifling whim of his would give the Madam such an inferiority complex?’
Rereading Battler then meeting Shannon again broke my heart a little. I have so much love for Sayo, and to think of what she must be going through in this scene, especially when he’s jokingly going for her breasts… (speaking of which, jesus christ her boobs are enormous with the new sprites. You’re overdoing the stuffing, Sayo. But otoh HOLY SHIT IT WAS WORTH READING THAT PART THROUGH WITH THE NEW SPRITES FOR BATTLER’S FACE THERE OH MY GOD) The fact that he just doesn’t remember their time together at all makes me want to smack him.
And that’s where I’m gonna leave it for tonight, because I’d really underestimated the feels certain parts of this were going to give me…