Shizuo chases after Izaya, the mob chases after Shizuo and Akane, and Varona chases after pretty much everything. As if there wasn’t enough chasing going on, Izaya trolls the Dollars into kidnapping one of Rokuro’s girlfriends.
I love it when all of Durarara!!‘s plot lines boil down to one and the same theme. The first season had that brilliant episode where everyone ended up searching for someone or something, and this episode was pretty similar. It might be hard to notice at first sight, but everyone in this episode is on the move: Akane runs away from home, Shizuo runs away from the mob, Izaya runs away from Shizuo and Celty runs away from virtually everyone, as usual. Of course, not all of the running away happening is literal. For the entire arc, all we’ve seen is Mikado and Masaomi running away from their responsibilities, to the point where they even actively seemed to reject their main character positions and stay as far away from anything interesting going on as humanly possible. The manifestation of that general theme in this episode is what made it so effective. Just like the ‘searching’ episode of season one really only served to reassert what the show was about at that point (Mikado searching for his identity, Masaomi searching for redemption, Celty searching for her head, etc.), this episode made me realize that Durarara!! has become one tremendous game of cat and mouse. It ended up not being the actual story elements or characters tying together the different ongoing plot threads as we’d all expected, but the overal theme.
The most explicit runaway of the entire season is, of course, Akane. While it seems a bit shady to me that a yakuza boss would send his daughter to a regular old grade school around the corner, her situation is sad not necessarily because of what’s already happend, but what could possibly happen. Her childhood is basically ruined. Narita’s all for romanticizing criminals, but how in the heck is this girl ever going to accept that her dad is a crook? Even if he actually decides to step down for her sake, she’s never getting those friends back. Despite being a lot more conventional than some of the other characters this season introduced, Akane is infinitely more tragic than most of them. Unlike Ruri, Kasuka or Varona, she refuses to accept her fate and desires something she will never have the moment she set foot in Ikebukero. No matter how wacky Durarara!! may be, there’s a tragic undercurrent to its lunacy that becomes more evident the closer a story arc comes to its conclusion. Whether they want it or not, there people are destined for each other, and anything they do will only end up making more innocents join their ranks.
With Kadota’s fight against Rokuro going viral, the battle between the Dollars and the Toramaru seems to have broken out in full force and as if manipulating a little girl into attempting to kill a relatively harmless man wasn’t enough already, Izaya calls for the Dollars to kidnap one of Rokuro’s girlfriends in an attempt to escalate the conflict. Whenever we watch Durarara!!, Iro tends to complain why no one’s shot the guy yet, but I think there’s really no reason why anyone would. To Mikado, he’s sort of an ally, to Masaomi a necessary evil, and to the mobs a vital source of information. Celty and Shinra seem barely even aware of his crimes, and Simon only broke his vow of neutrality when Izaya really took it too far last season. Shizuo’s the only one with both reason and intent to ghost him, but we all know how well that’s going. The guy is virtually untouchable and he knows it. He’s the one person with a hand in everything going on in Ikebukero, which is what makes him the most effective villain for a chaotic, multifaceted show like Durarara!! to have. He’s the guy who puts all the pieces in place and presses play, running the city like a twisted Rube Goldberg machine for his own entertainment. With Anri and Celty teaming up for battle, and the entire Dollars after one innocent girl, it’s about time for Durarara!! to let its plot off the proverbial leash and release the chaos we all know and love. We’ve been kept waiting for too long.
- Chances are likely Akane will end up being ‘adopted’ by Shinra and Celty, because despite what it might want to make you believe, Durarara!! is still very much a light novel.
- I can’t help but feel Akane’s drawings look like bad Love Live! fanart.
- Fun detail, in case you didn’t notice: Celty’s e-mail address is the name of her horse.