Another – Episode 1

This is the second new series I’m picking up from the winter season. I’m not particularly a horror fan, but this seemed like a pretty well reviewed series so far, so I thought I would try it out. I guess if for some reason I don’t like it, I only have to put up with it for 12 episodes, but, of course, I hope that it’s good.

There is a story about Grade 9, Class 3 at Yomiyama North Middle School: 26 years ago, a girl named Misaki, who was the most popular person in the grade, was killed in an accident. The rest of her class, distraught by her passing, pretended that she never died, all the way up to her graduation. Now, Kouichi, who is transferring to the school due to his father’s job, is taken ill as the school year begins, and is visited by the class’s officers, though they seem to interrogate him more than wish him well. That night, Kouichi runs into a girl in an elevator heading toward the morgue whose name is Mei Misaki. At his first day of school, his classmates appear to be hiding something from Kouichi. Kouichi later finds Mei on the roof, who tells him that his classmates associate his name with death.

The mysterious Mei shares her last name with the murdered girl from 26 years ago

The mysterious Mei shares her last name with the murdered girl from 26 years ago

Well, since this is supposed to be a mystery, I guess I’ll try to do as much speculation as I can in these write ups.

I guess let’s get the seemingly obvious stuff out of the way: I don’t think there is any coincidence that Mei shares her last name with the girl who was murdered 26 years ago. Furthermore, she and the rest of the class keep their distance from each other to such an extent that the rest of the class doesn’t even seem to acknowledge Mei’s existence. I think the primary question here is whether Mei is a relative of the girl from 26 years ago, or merely her ghost. I suppose that will depend on what direction this show takes: will it take a more supernatural turn or will it only appear to be supernatural, but actually not be? Personally, I lean toward the former since that seems to be how shows like this work.

The second immediate mystery is more unclear: why would the class connect Kouichi’s name – specifically his last name – with death? It appears both his aunt and his mother attended this same school, though it’s unclear whether they were in class 3 (though my guess is that they were). We know that his aunt Reiko attended the school 14 years ago, but we don’t know about his mother. It’s possible that one or both of them are associated with some deaths that occurred in the class at the time, thus why his name is associated with death.

And now my first speculation on what is going on (and please no one spoil whether I”m actually right or not yet): Misaki’s death 26 years ago was by no means an accident. In fact, I have a feeling that students from class 3, either a significant portion, or perhaps the entire class, conspired to kill her for some yet unknown reason, and then used their behavior of pretending she had never died as a cover to act like they weren’t responsible. As a result, the “ghost” of Misaki, who at the moment is in the form of Mei, has taken revenge of members of Class 3 ever since. Kouichi’s roll in this story will be to uncover the truth of what happened 26 years ago and, presumably in the process, end the reign of terror of Misaki’s spirit.