Kaiki plays his trump card while confronting Nadeko, forever changing the lives of everyone involved.
Let us take a moment to pour one out on the street for our man Kaiki Deishu. Even to the very end he kept you wondering about his motivations and you could make a strong argument that it was his plan to save Nadeko all along. I think my favorite moment was his final conversation with Araragi, in which he makes it overwhelmingly clear the difference between a child and an adult and that Araragi has a long way to go before he’s at Kaiki’s level. His “Fake Con Man” persona was without question the series’ best example of NisioIsin’s double talk and wordplay that he’s so well known for. This being anime it’s hard to say with certainty that he’s actually dead, but I think it’s safe to say at the very least his part in the story is over.
I was surprised how much Kaiki’s (alleged) death hit me from an emotional standpoint, and it certainly made up for copping out on Nadeko’s irredeemability. After last week’s mention of her closet I just assumed it was going to be a running joke that we never find out what was in there, but this worked out much better. I definitely would not have guessed its contents, but once everything was revealed it made Nadeko’s character make that much more sense. The way it was all tied together with Kaiki’s speech about wishes was brilliant, giving even further evidence that this was his plan all along – either that or he’s an amazing improvisor, but wouldn’t that just make him cooler?
Overall, Koimonogatari turned out to be one of the best arcs yet, although for far different reasons than I would have ever expected. Kaiki managed to be such a cool and complex character that he totally made me forget this was supposed to be about Senjougahara and Araragi, certainly no small feat. With this arc finished all that remains is Hanamonogatari, which Shaft has only nebulously pegged for “2014”. I’ve decided to hold off on final impressions until that airs since it is part of the “Season 2” storyline, but I’ll leave you with some statistics to illustrate how I feel: Bakemonogatari covered 5 story arcs in 15 episodes, for an average of 3 episodes per arc. Since then there have been 38 episodes covering 8 arcs, bringing the average to nearly 5 episodes per arc. Between that and some questionable plot choices, I’m definitely experiencing Monogatari fatigue. I’m looking forward to seeing how the story concludes in Season 3, especially with the intriguing developments surrounding Gaen and Ougi, but I’m also in favor of a break once Hanamonogatari airs.