Just finished the Kubikiri Cycle, figured I might as well write about it!
The thing is, I actually watched the first 7 episodes, then proceeded to watch 30 episodes of Legend of the Galactic Heroes, before coming back and watching (skimming) the final 8th episode.
And you know what? That says a lot about how I feel about Kubiriki Cycle.
Kubikiri Cycle spoilers ahead.
Also, Kubikiri Cycle rant ahead.
I thought Kubikiri Cycle was a mystery anime. What type of mystery did it end up being though? An “in your face” mystery anime? One of those “let’s come up with the most convoluted and ridiculous situations conceivable and frame it as a mystery” stories? Yes.
The anime provides you with a “solution” on episode 7. After that, I lost motivation to finish the final episode because, what’s the point? I now knew who the killer was, and how they did it. What value was there in continuing?
There is one piece of the “solution” in particular that bothered me. And that was the whole “jumped off the shoulders of a corpse to reach a window that looks way too high” portion. Let’s be honest here, you wouldn’t have to cut the top of someone’s shoulders off to be able to jump off of them. I don’t think cheerleaders have to wear flat shoulderpads or anything to climb onto each other’s shoulders. So if the killer could somehow manage to get the corpse standing upright, that’s all they needed.
So the whole, “jump off flat shoulders because of the way the head was cut off” part just seemed too frivolous to me. It wasn’t necessary at all. Felt like one gimmick too many. It’s what turned me off to the anime – “it’s just trying too hard” I thought while watching.
I also wasn’t a fan of how the killer escaped the room through the window (on their own). The anime purposely shows the window as extremely high up, to the point where I don’t think ANY viewer would even CONSIDER jumping to it a possibility. I know mystery anime / stories sometimes do this, it’s just something I’m not too keen on. I prefer a mystery where it’s actually possible to predict the solution, both the identity of the culprit(s) and how they did it. I don’t need 100% of the details; but I’d appreciate if the anime didn’t make something look impossible, and then proceed to make it possible later on.
I was fine with the body swap and definitely thought I should have considered it. Danganronpa fooled me once, and Kubikiri managed to fool me twice with that trick! That part was good for sure. The anime even mentions it as a possibility too! Well done.
And that’s a wrap, right? We learned the identity of the killer, as well as HOW they did what they did. Curiosity satisfied, no motivation to watch episode 8…
To be perfectly honest, I only watched (skimmed) episode 8 so I could write this post and mark the anime complete on MAL. The episode just seemed pointless.
And after watching (skimming) episode 8, I still think it’s a pointless episode.
“Here’s some extra details about that mystery that was already solved”, yeah, thanks anime. So the killer was actually the person who was murdered, pretending to be the person who was the killer? Sure. Why not?
Just like the whole “flat shoulder” thing, episode 8 of Kubikiri just felt like a “here’s more excessive details” episode. I guess the anime just didn’t have enough “in your face” pointless information already. It needed an entire episode dedicated to more senseless details.
So yeah, episode 8 didn’t do it for me at all. It was essentially 45 minutes of exposition providing the viewers with just more details about the mystery, and how the “solution” from episode 7 wasn’t enough. It was enough for me, enough for me to not care if some minor details were off.
I wasn’t exactly shouting at my screen asking “But what about X?”, eager to find out the TRUE solution that answers every single loose end in the mystery. The major reveal, that the killer and the first victim were pretending to be each other, didn’t really matter. It’s not like we would ever see either character again, considering episode 8 is the final episode. Just a solution of a solution. Excessive.
“Oh yeah! And that girl who was Ilia the entire anime? That was actually her maid. They switched places. Why? No reason. Just wanted more excessive twists to throw in your face.”.
But why stop there? Let’s just keep going! Maybe the entire island was actually an illusion, and they were on a ship the whole time? Or maybe all of the geniuses were actually fakes.. How about this? The corpse was fake, and the whole murder was just a joke. Can’t have too many of these excessive developments right?
I guess that’s the word that best describes how I feel about Kubikiri. Too excessive, tries too hard, too “in your face”, too convoluted for no real reason.
Personally, I think I would give the anime a higher rating if it ended at episode 7.
Aikawa was basically the embodiment of senseless detail in the anime. All anime long, Aikawa is played up as this genius detective who will show up on the island and solve the case. To the point where it almost felt like the entire anime was just “waiting for Aikawa to show up”.
I enjoyed the fact that the mystery was “solved” before Aikawa showed up. It created this situation where you didn’t really know whether the characters would solve the case in time or not. A little mystery in it’s own sense. That is, until Aikawa didn’t show up at all and the mystery was “solved”. Which was fine, but after that I knew the type of character she would be: pointless.
“Wait a second, that’s not the REAL solution! Let me explain the REAL solution to you over the course of 40 minutes, with pointless visuals of us driving around the whole time.”.
Aikawa Jun & episode 8 in a nutshell.
I forget his name. Not going to spend too much time writing about him. I just wanted to point out that he felt very monotone and boring. The anime spends all this time developing him to be this lonely, average character amidst a crowd of geniuses. I’m not really sure if any of that was necessary though. Very forgettable.
If I had to recommend Kubikiri, I’d only recommend the first 7 episodes. Save yourself the time and skip the last one.
Anyways, that’s all I’ve got to say about Kubikiri. This sort of turned into a rant. I guess I just don’t like when an anime that is going well just kills itself in the end. I was enjoying the mystery, the characters. I enjoyed trying to figure it all out. I just didn’t appreciate parts of the initial “solution”; I didn’t appreciate the anime “solving” the mystery, only to “solve” it again right after for no real reason. Tried too hard to be “deep”, but was a pretty shallow anime in the end.
Just too excessive for me.
Back to Legend of the Galactic Heroes!
Until next time.
Thanks for reading.