幕開け--まくあけ--Makuake--Beginning/Opening Edit

This is probably one of the funniest and serious episodes of the entire anime series. It contains a lot of visual jokes. Characters quickly shift to chibi versions then back to more serious depictions. Similarly, Rika and Hanyū shift between their child and adult voices. Other characters will similarly shift between more comic to serious voices.

The episode opens with a view of Hinamizawa from above as Hanyū voices in her more adult voice that it is June, 1983. She states that "we" have learned that fate may be defeated provided everyone unites as one. Haltingly, she states as the scene centers first to village level then to the school: "That's why I . . ."

Outside the school we hear, "Rise! Bow!" from Mion and the children greet the teacher. Scene shifts to a black board giving the date as "June 10th (Friday)"--6月10日 (金)--and the voice of the teacher Chie Rumiko announces a new transfer student, Furude Hanyū. Hanyū is dressed in a school uniform as she is seen in the opening credits. She has her horns and as discussed in the section devoted to her character, the anime does not mention them at all and no one seems to notice them. A blushing Hanyū introduces herself, but due to her

Blushing Hanyū

nervousness, messes up the traditional introduction in chibi form which is translated as, "Very meased to pleet you all!"

Mease to Pleet You

Hanyū turns chibi as she nervously mixes up her introduction.

The other children find her "cute," and Keiichi notes she has the same family name as Rika while behind him Rena's eyes are pulsating stars. Rika tells him she is a distant relative and Satoko states she is also surprised since she did not know that Rika had any relatives. Rena changes into full drooling "Cute Mode" chibi, proclaims Hanyū "So cute!" then gathers up the shocked and "au-au-auing" chibi Hanyū and runs away claiming she will "take her home"--お持ち帰り--"omochikaeri!"--as a chibi Chie demands she "Do not suddenly take the transfer student home." This comic "take home" scene will be repeated.


Rena Omochikaeri

With the lunch bell rung, Mion states students must "shoot her some deep questions" to get to know Hanyū better. One nervous boy asks her her favorite food. Hanyū nervously responds that she likes all kinds of sweets, but likes cream puffs best. Another boy mentions his parents run a tofu shop. Hanyū loves tofu and animated hearts appear above the boy's head. A chibi Mion demands who will ask the next question or, "I'll ask her about the color of her underwear!" Chibi Hanyū cringes and "Au-au-au"s.


A chibi Mion expresses interest in the color of Hanyū unmentionables!

A non-chibi Satoko punches the chibi Mion in her stomach as a chibi Hanyū cringes at her desk: "Refrain from asking vulgar questions!"

Vulgar Questions

Satoko expresses exception to the questions of chibi Mion

The scene suddenly shifts to Rena "taking her home" again, with a recovering Mion demanding she does not make "such a random move."

The scene shifts to boys asking Hanyū more questions while a chibi Rena is tied up with what is actually a form

Rena Tied

Rena tied up in a fashion decency prevents us from detailing.

of Japanese rope-bondage. This is just one of the visual jokes in the episode. However, the scene shifts in seriousness as a non-chibi Rena tells Keiichi that she is "kinda happy." Keiichi jokingly asks if it is because her "take-out menu has expanded." Rena laughs and agrees, but then she adds that she has had the feeling that she has seen Hanyū a few times in the past. "I have a feeling Hanyū-chan was right beside us always watching us play around." As the scene focuses on the boys doting on Hanyū, Rena explains that by simply watching them, Hanyū was always left out. This probably references her seeing Hanyū in the past when she was suffering from the Hinamizawa Syndrome. A previous episode from another arc possibly depicts a very translucent Hanyū listening in to Rena and Keiichi plot a game. Be that as it may, it seems clear that Rena finds a connection between Hanyū and the figure she has seen in the past.

Rena is glad Hanyū is now their friend. She is surprised by Rika standing near her. Rika says that Rena is really a kind person. She asks, as a favor, that Rena and Keiichi be kind to Hanyū. Keiichi agrees, but Rena explodes from her restraints to "take her home" once more while a chibi Keiichi, with Rika watching, demands she stop.

With the bell ringing the end of class, Mion announces club activities. Hanyū opens the door and enters the room. Mion, Rika, Rena, Keiichi, and Satoko stare at her. Mion asks if she has forgotten something. Nervous, blushing, and with a halting voice, Hanyū "au-aus" and asks, "Rika?" Rika confidently responds that she will not say anything, and if Hanyū wants something, she will have to ask for it herself. Hanyū stutters the "boku"--"I"--but eventually states she wants to join their club. Rika claps for her "good job!" Hanyū admits that up until this point in time she has run away from every fight with the fear of losing. The rest listen to her seriously. Her voice is the more adult voice she used in the narration. Hanyū states that running away is worse than losing, and without trying one can never win: "That is what the people I love taught me." Rika appears surprised with her commitment and simply says, "Hanyū."

Excited Mion eagerly accepts Hanyū and announces the "entrance exam" of the game Old Geezer--a game that will be significant later in the series. Chortling, with her face in shadows, Mion warns that the cards are worn from use and everyone can read the scratches and chips. A very chibi Hanyū accepts the challenge.

Hanyu Cards Smaller

Hanyū reacts to the cards.

As the chibi Mion chortles that she can read her last two cards, a chibi Hanyū streams tears and "au-aus." Apologizing, Rena takes one card from her and is "out." Chibi Hanyū "au-aus" in tearful panic. Chibi Keiichi announces this is her "baptism" as she tries to shield her card from what will be her inevitable defeat. However, the scene shifts to non-chibi and Mion tells her that if she picks Keiichi's right hand card, she will be "out." She does this over Keiichi's chibi protests. He angrily asks her if she really wants to "crawl back home wearing a collar, a tail and bloomers after your first day of school?!" Satoko feels that outfit will suit him much better. Rika "miiii"s in agreement as a chibi Rena descends into her "Cute Mode." Keiichi demands to know why they are all against him as they all, including Hanyū, derisively laugh.

The scene radically changes to a building in a city. The voice over announces that the investigation of a case is not longer in their jurisdiction. Akasaka Mamoru listens as another officer complains about their failure to nail those in the government responsible for misappropriating funds. Akasaka consoles them until he notices in a file "Tokyo" and "Irie Clinic." He sees "Irie Clinic," "Hinamizawa," "Kamikari Pharamaceutical Research Facility," and ""Aizu Hospital" listed in a file as he says to himself, "Hinamizawa."

After the commercial break, the scene opens with poor Keiichi dressed as he predicted walking and complaining with the rest of the club members. Hanyū tries to offer that it "looks great on you!" Keiichi threatens that the next day it will be her turn. Hanyū smiles and states she would not mind trying it once, to which Satoko giggles over him being "brushed off lightly." Keiichi has a chibi screaming tantrum, and all laughingly disperse from him save Rika. She observes in her child voice that Hanyū is already fitting in. A calmer Keiichi agrees, and observes that even though Hanyū only transferred in that day, he feels that she has been with them "forever." Rika agrees and states that Hanyū has always been beside them. Keiichi looks confused, Rika merely gives him a "Nipaaa," but before Keiichi can comment, we hear from off-screen Hanyū screaming her "Au-au-au" as Mion asks if she is alright. Keiichi and Rika rush to Mion, Rena, and Satoko. Satoko cries that Hanyū tripped and feel down the side of the road. A chibi Hanyū lies on the ground with her eyes swirling as she "Au-aus." The rest find her with

Hanyū Fall Down

Takano Miyo and Tomitake Jirō. Jirō observes that Keiichi must have lost again. Miyo concludes that Hanyū is "fine" and her "eyes are just swirling a bit" as Jirō wonders about a girl suddenly crashing down on them. A non-chibi Hanyū awakens, then sees Takano as the sounds of the Higurashi increase. Scared, Hanyū will not look at Miyo and Jirō, even when Rika introduces them and explains that they "aren't suspicious at all!" Hanyū finally stares at Takano and says the name "Takano" to herself. When Takano says to her she must be the "new transfer student Hanyū-chan" Hanyū will not look at her. She merely stares at the ground scared.


Hanyū will not look at Miyo and Jirō

At this point, it should be noted that Miyo does not recognize Hanyū as the goddess she threatened in a previous episode. She merely notes that she is the "new transfer student." Unlike the manga version, as explained in Hanyū's character profile, Miyo does not seem to notice her horns.

The scene shifts to night with a view of the Moon as we hear Rika in her adult voice stating that she does not believe it. To recall from the previous arc--Minagoroshi-hen--Rika refused a sedative so she could remember in her next life that it was Miyo who would disembowel her. As it has been in all her previous lives, Rika still could not remember who killed her. Hanyū had also vowed she would remember. Hanyū, in her more adult voice, confesses that she also had forgotten everything until she saw Miyo's face and affirms that Miyo and the Yamainu are her enemies. She also states that the Rika of the previous world--Minagoroshi-hen--kept her eyes on Miyo while being killed in the futile attempt to remember in her next life. Hanyū does not know why Miyo wishes to kill her, but reminds her that in the previous life--Minagoroshi-hen--they very nearly defeated fate. What they learned was to unite everyone's strengths. Since they know the identity of the enemy, they should be able to defeat fate. Rika is frustrated that she does not remember any of this. Hanyū sadly suggests it may be because her powers to resurrect her grow weaker and this may be the final world.

Rika-Hanyū Behind

Still in her adult voice Rika observes that she thought it was strange that everyone could see Hanyū and that she decided to transfer into their school. Hanyū states this is not strange; she simply decided to quit being a bystander. Takano has powerful pieces, and Rika must gather help from many other people or she cannot win. Rika expresses surprise that Hanyū really decided to cease being just a bystander. She then confesses that, "No matter how often you explained to me who you are, or where you came from I was never able to comprehend" but suggests that Hanyū's current appearance could be her true self. Hanyū responds she was a goddess worshiped by the land who died to atone for the sins of the land, "as a human sacrifice to join man to the demons." She notes that people push their impurities on others in order to purify themselves. However, she has decided to quit being "a powerless god," and she vows to fight with Rika.

The scene shifts to outside of a restaurant where we hear a voice express surprise that Rika will be killed. Inside sit Akasaka, Ōishi, Kumagai, and the pathologist. Akasaka notes that in 1978 Rika predicted the chain of deaths. Ōishi confesses that he will retire next year but wishes to uncover the truth behind the mysterious deaths no matter the cost. He wonders how Rika could have predicted the deaths. The pathologist wonders how she is connected to the investigation Akasaka had been involved in. Akasaka does not have an answer, but he requests their help to save Rika. They agree.

Scene then shifts to a chibi Irie prancing to see Satoko in the morning at the school. This is the date of her monthly check-up, and he asks her why she was not wearing her "maid hairband." "If you break the rules, I'll have to punish you." A chibi Satoko grouses that she has never heard of these rules. A malevolent chibi Chie demands he abstain from this behavior at school. Chibi Irie claims it is merely a "joke," but non-chibi Irie

Chie Scolds Irie

mutters to himself that he is quite serious. Rika interrupts this by asking to speak with him.

The scene shifts to his office in the clinic. In her adult voice, Rika asks about "Emergency Manual #34." Irie confesses that he withheld this from her, and he explains that should the Queen Carrier suddenly die, all of the residents of Hinamizawa will be massacred. Rika asks if Takano would have anything to gain by the execution of this plan or killing her. When Irie protests that she has three years to finish her research, Rika asks if it is unreasonable for Takano to "throw over the tables in desperation?" Irie reluctantly concedes this is possible.

The scene then moves to Rika returning to the class room with her friends waiting concerned. When they ask her what is wrong, Rika responds in her child's voice that she was merely asking about a manga she is writing. She describes the plot of the manga as her own situation: the Queen Carrier dies, the village is massacred, and a "Tokyo" is behind it. Rika states she is having problems explaining motivation of the villain. Mion suggests that clearly someone must profit from the annihilation of the village. If this happens, then someone will be forced to take responsibility. She explains on the blackboard that two factions are in competition. A huge scandal such as the annihilation of a village will force "Faction A" to take the blame and lose influence: "This is the goal of Faction B as the villain, who are plotting to kill the Queen Carrier from the shadows." Keiichi agrees that with such an evil organization, "there is sure to be a lot of backstabbing and sabotaging going around." Rika asks how "the girl" can fight such an organization. Mion notes that if the girl has friends like Satoko who can make traps, she might manage. Desperate, Rika demands more ideas.

After the end titles, the woman who approached Miyo talks to her from her phone in her car. She identifies herself as "Nomura." She congratulates Miyo that because of her work the Ministry of Health and Welfare now comprehend the dangers of Hinamizawa Syndrome. She promises that after the "terminal operations" have concluded, a new research facility will be established with Miyo as the head. The Prime Minister is aware of the dangers, and "Nomura" prays for Miyo's success. She then hangs up and dials another number. She identifies herself as "Takagi" and states that if the operation succeeds, the former Koizumi faction will fall and the Chief Cabinet Secretary will be dismissed.

Chibi Rika and Hanyū address the subject of what protrudes from Hanyū's head. As explained in her character page, the anime does neither explains nor seems to acknowledge her horns. What they are is "bleeped" out and rendered with "*****" in translation. Adult voiced Rika demands: "What else than ***** do they look like to you?"