• Baccano-Episode-13.2 Television 

    Five Thoughts on Baccano!‘s “Both the Immortals and Those Who Aren’t Sing the Praises of Life Equally”

    By | August 7th, 2017
    Posted in Television | % Comments

    Okay, I have to apologize. I have been doing a countdown to the final episode of the main story the last few weeks and I got my numbers wrong. I kept thinking episode 14 was the last episode of the main story, but it’s actually this episode. The one we’re talking about now. The threads are tying up here big time. Let’s get down to it.

    1. Claire and Chane

    Baccano! has a lot of different relationships, but to me, there is one that is the most interesting and that is the one between Claire Stanfield and Chane Laforet and this episode drives that home. After getting rid of Ladd and Lua, Claire turns to Chane and is able to deduce that she is Huey Laforet’s daughter. Chane is naturally on the defense, thinking Claire is someone else that want’s Huey’s immortality.

    So Claire proposes to her. As in a marriage proposal.

    Now, the weird part isn’t that Claire is covered head-to-toe in blood. All things considered, that’s pretty tame with Claire. When I first watched this, it came out of nowhere. Only with multiple rewatches and finally getting to read the novel I got it a bit more:

    Here we have to murderers. One who has some deep-seated trust issues on top of never having been loved (Again: Huey Laforet is a ba~stard). The other is someone who believes he is the only real person on the planet. And here is where the novel comes in. In the show, when they first met, Claire berates Chane for nearly lobbing his ear off. What the novel actually clarifies is that Chane actually scratched him. She is the only one to put a mark on Claire. In that instance, to Claire, Chane became the only other real thing in the world. On top of that, when they first met and he realized Chane is mute, he immediately apologizes for his insensitivity. So you’ve got this guy being genuine when he says that he loves her, something she’s never heard anyone say to her in her life. He’s not looking to push her into anything, asking her to carve her answer into the train roof as he goes off to deal with a sniper that tried to kill them.

    We’ll be talking about these two again when we start examining the epilogue story, but their dichotomy is so strange… and yet… it somehow works? Like, any other show this would be odd, but Baccano! kind of makes them adorable.

    2. Jaccuzi vs. Goose

    The boy who cries and cries shows a load of guts in this final fight. He’s armed only with a cherry bomb vs. Goose, who not only has a flamethrower but a gauntlet that will fire a bullet when he punches. Jacuzzi learns this first hand when he gets a bullet in the gut. But Jacuzzi no longer has any tears to shed, so now he can be fully focused. And it’s badass. I mean, he lets out a panicked yell as he charges Goose and headbuts him. And headbuts him. And headbuts him more. Finally pushing Goose off the train and ending the threat of the Lumeres.

    Jacuzzi’s journey has been about bravery. He has it, but it takes a load of strength, and a load of, what fools would call “weakness”, to bring it out. So even though he is cursed with the worst of names, there is a load of admiration one can have with seeing such a passive, shy, almost wallflower of a character come out and charge right into the face of danger.

    3. Remember Her Name

    Ennis. Her name is Ennis. She wants Isaac and Miria to remember that as she turns on Szilard, charging and stabbing him literally in the back. But Szilard is… well immortal. In anger, Szilard invokes his will for Ennis heart to slowly shut down, drawing her death out to make her suffer. With that, the last resistance against Szilard is gone…

    “Hey Maiza. How come killin us didn’t get us dead?”

    It was a foregone conclusion, but it’s still a great moment as Firo and the other Martillo’s come back to life. You can see the color drain from Szilard’s face in pure rage. It only gets worse for the old man and Randy and Pecho -whose fire starting tendencies started this whole story- douse Szilard in lighter fluid and light a match, setting the alchemist ablaze. It’s only from Ennis’ words to Firo do they realize how to stop Szilard. Firo charges the old man and places his right hand on his head, devouring him.

    Continued below

    Lastly, Firo holds the dying Ennis, as she asks him to devour her as well, so at least he can tell Isaac and Miria all the things she wanted to. Firo just smirks and taps her forehead, “If you want to say something, then just say it”. Firo absorbed all of Szilard’s knowledge, including how to reverse the stranglehold placed on Ennis’ body. And we’re left with Firo finally introducing himself to Ennis. Ennis introduces herself, but is confused since Firo should know her name. “Honestly,” he smiles, “I just wanted to hear you say it to me.” Smooth, Firo.

    Ennis quest for identity and family is just starting now, with her truly meeting and being part of this group of unlikely strangers and immortals. She’s gone from subservient to her own woman, but it’s a working progress. It’s a new beginning for her, and it makes you smile that such a violent night could end happily.

    4. The Beginning of Czes’s Healing

    Ennis isn’t the only one that is beginning on a path. Czeslaw may have tried to do some bad things, but it’s here at his lowest that we see vulnerability. He’s terrified, thinking that Isaac and Miria are going to devour him, but he’s also had it. Just end it. But it doesn’t happen. Instead they hug him and make sure that he’s alright. They continue to insist that he’s a good boy, even when Czes himself doesn’t believe it.

    But it’s not just this dose of empathy Czes gets, as the Flying Pussyfoot arrives in New York and we reach the point where the first episode ended, with Czes and Maiza meeting again. Czes had come to New York to devour Maiza, but a lot has changed in the young boy. It is only when Maiza puts his left hand on Czes hand and smiles to him that he finally breaks down, hugging and sobbing into Maiza, maybe, just maybe, beginning to learn to trust again.

    5. So What Is Baccano! About?

    While we have the three epilogue episodes to talk about in the coming weeks, this episode is the narrative and, in a lot of cases, emotional climaxes to the series. So, the question has to be asked: What is this series about? Now, yes we have gangsters, immortals, the supernatural. Sure. But that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about something deeper. What you get out of watching the show. This is something tailored to the individual.

    And to me, as odd is it may sound, I think Baccano! is about love.

    Okay, that may be a loaded word, because I don’t think this series is a romance, even if it does have romantic elements and couples. But I do think, underneath it all, it is about the different types of love. Sure there’s romantic love. But also familial love (remember to rare time Dallas felt like an actual person was when he interacted with Eve), love between friends, between comrades and even crazy love that really is eyebrow raising. The bonds that form, that grow, that sever. The bonds that have made up this crazy world of Ryogho Narita. The bonds that last forever, with our favorite duo Isaac and Miria still together 70+ years after becoming immortal (and taking just as long to realize that).

    //TAGS | 2017 Summer TV Binge | Baccano!

    Ken Godberson III

    When he's not at his day job, Ken Godberson III is a guy that will not apologize for being born Post-Crisis. More of his word stuffs can be found on Twitter or Tumblr. Warning: He'll talk your ear off about why Impulse is the greatest superhero ever.


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