LIMIT: Episode 9

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You never really know how you’d act in a certain situation until it’s staring you in the face. Desperate circumstances can bring out a part of yourself that you didn’t know existed; if it’s the best or worst part of you remains to be seen.

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Kamiya walks around a room filled with mirrors. “Making out the truth is very difficult. That is because deep down inside of them…everyone only sees the things they want to see. Preconception, aspiration, prejudice. That person right in front of you, who knows who he/she really is? Nobody can tell for sure. Perhaps…not even that person him/herself?” The mirror in front of her cracks.

Mizuki racks her brain to figure out why Kamiya lied, but can’t come up with a good explanation. Morishige says that Kamiya was obviously annoyed with Usui and that Usui may have felt driven into a corner by her. Morishige doesn’t seem so sure that Kamiya is the criminal though; Usui wasn’t exactly in her right mind that day so anyone that ran across her could have made her snap.

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Kamiya comes back and Mizuki doesn’t waste time and asks why she lied. Kamiya’s just surprised as they are, maintaining that she counted them correctly. She remembers that Hinata was going through the luggage this morning supposedly looking for a band-aid and Morishige grimly says she knew it. She tells Kamiya to just say she didn’t kill Usui, but just based on past experiences, if a person is in doubt, there’s no way to erase it. Kamiya’s not saying she didn’t do it, but there isn’t any evidence against her. Morishige concludes that Hinata’s the culprit and is only capable of using cheap tricks to turn them against each other.

The thought makes Mizuki uneasy and she goes to find Hinata, who’s digging around the forest. She asks what he’s looking for, but he says it’s not important. Then she asks about the cut on his finger, like how he cut it and which finger. He’s surprised by all the questions and asks why she’s being strange. Yeah, she’s strange, but you’re the one dodging questions. She changes the topic and says they should go to the river. As they leave, we see Morishige watching in the background.

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Mizuki dips her head in the river for a drink as Hinata rolls up his sleeves and approaches her slowly. He pushes her head down and she struggles for air before Hinata finally lets go. She’s freaked out, but Hinata claims he was just joking. Haha, yeah, joking. Ha.

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Mizuki remains suspicious of Hinata as they refill their water bottles, sneaking glances at him every now and then.  She remembers when she told him she was going to quit the swimming club. Her lap times had become slower and swimming had become a hassle. Hinata said it didn’t matter if she wasn’t a good swimmer; even if she was struggling, the important thing was that she managed to arrive on the other side. She’s jolted out of the memory when Hinata asks what’s wrong. She feels guilty for suspecting Hinata, though she doesn’t tell him that, only cryptically saying she’s pathetic and can’t stand herself anymore.

Igarashi’s suspension has been lifted and he’s taking Kamiya’s siblings to Shizuoka with the rest of the parents. The parents aren’t pleased to see him, to say the least, but Igarashi continues on like nothing’s wrong. Dad feels bad for Igarashi and offers him a drink while on the bus.

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When Hinata and Mizuki come back, Morishige demands that Hinata admit to the murder. Mizuki points out there’s no evidence against him and the only reason she suspects him is because she doesn’t like Hinata, but Morishige knows she took Hinata to the river to get a confession out of him. Mizuki tries to avoid the topic by talking about how she wants to go home. Once they’re rescued, Haru’s body can be recovered and the police can investigate Usui’s death; all of this will be over.

No one sleeps well that night, and Morishige who continues to sleep outside, says that she wishes everyone would disappear.

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The press, including Haruka, is waiting for the parents when they arrive in Shizuoka. She asks her mother for details, and Mom asks if she wants to know as a member of their family or as a reporter. Haruka can’t give a response, so her mother turns away.

Mizuki wakes up the next day and sees Usui’s buzzer. She remembers when the compress was found in Haru’s pocket and how Hinata said that it was on Usui’s leg. Hmm, but didn’t Hinata say he didn’t see Usui? She looks over to where Hinata slept, but he’s already gone.

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She goes out to look for him and finds him frantically digging a huge hole. He freezes when she calls out to him and doesn’t look up as she sits next to him. She admits that she suspected Kamiya, but she remembered how Kamiya told her she thought Haru was framed. That’s not something the murderer would share if they didn’t want to be caught. She asks how he knew the compress was on Usui’s leg, even though he said he never met her and no one said where Usui’s compress had been.

Hinata keeps looking down as she asks why he lied. She hesitates before saying it can’t be true that he killed Usui, right? There’s just no way. He doesn’t answer and she pleads with him to tell her she’s wrong. She makes him face her, screaming that she must be wrong, and he pulls her into a hug.

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Hinata: “All this time…all this time I’ve been scared. Why did it all turn out like this…I’m not myself anymore. I’m sinking. Down to a deep…and pitch-black place. There is nobody else. I’m scared. But I’ve made up my mind. I’ll definitely make it back. Where none of this has happened, back to my old self…”

And that’s when Mizuki sees the bloody sickle in the hole.

“Where I haven’t killed anyone.”

He pushes Mizuki down and puts his hands around her throat and she doesn’t struggle. “Forgive me Konno. I can’t go back anymore. Forgive me.” A tear falls on Mizuki’s face as he begins to choke her.

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Mizuki: “Hinata has been like a sun to me. Bright and warm, always having a smile on his face, but now…Hey, why are you crying? Tell me, why?”

The credits roll and Mizuki’s desk slowly fades away.

Thoughts: It would be weird if our heroine died with three more episodes to go, so the question isn’t if she’ll die, but how she’ll get out of it.

A small part of me can’t help but roll my eyes and think, “Of course the boy did it,”but if I push that part away, I like that Hinata turned out to be the killer. LIMIT has not been pushing the envelope as much as I thought it would, at least not since episode two. The characters are broad stereotypes, which I don’t have a problem with, but nothing interesting has been done with them. Up until Usui’s death, any conflict that arose has been resolved the way it would have been if some strange circumstances had forced these characters together at school making you wonder why the mangaka decided to place them out in the wilderness in the first place. Maybe I’m asking too much since they’ve only been out here four days and one character has been killed and another has accidentally died, but I want more than a typical after school special.

I thought LIMIT would center around characters that had a side to them they didn’t know about emerge under present circumstances.  I mean they are fighting to survive with people they don’t like,  not knowing when they’ll be rescued; there’s no telling how anyone would act. The show sort of tried it with Haru and to an extent Mizuki, but that was quickly resolved without consequences so it sort of fizzled out.  That’s why I welcomed Hinata’s reveal as the murderer. He’s not merely the guy that Mizuki has a crush on; we’ve seen him in flashbacks with Kamiya and Haru as well, he’s the all-around nice guy that you can’t help but like. He’s dependable, friendly, and always ready to offer advice, so the fact that he killed Usui and tried to cover it up makes you wonder who is this guy, really? I doubt he killed Usui in cold blood, but this isn’t something that can be glossed over with another (supposedly) heartwarming conversation, so I hope that something different happens next episode.

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