Clashing Haruhianschauungen mean a Headache for Kyon

Besides being a very entertaining installment, episode 24 came chock-full of intrigue.  We get statements from the three factions, one after another, all in all a big headache for Kyon.  Let me see if I can help him out.

brother...

brother...

First off, Itsuki.  He’s been talking all along, and Kyon (and I, for one) tended to believe him simply because he was the only one that seemed willing to explain things.  For the information-starved, Itsuki’s lectures were a godsend, often exasperating, but welcome nonetheless.

However, something really interesting happens in this episode.  Kyon makes a throwaway comment about Itsuki’s faction believing Haruhi is God.  And Itsuki replies “Did I say that?”  Faced with Kyon’s anger, he claims he’s teasing him and then proceeds to hash out another theory in which Haruhi is a god sent by The God to destroy the world.

Was he really teasing Kyon?  That’s one question.  Sometimes people that lie have trouble keeping track.  Or Itsuki could just as well be so contemptuous of Kyon that he not only changes stories, but doesn’t really mind Kyon finding them inconsistent.

The gist of Itsuki’s Haruhianschauung remains the same throughout: she is a threat, she can destroy the world.  His appeal to Kyon is one of camaraderie: “Kyon, you love this world, right?  So do I.  Help me protect it.”  Even if she actually made the world 3 years ago (a possibility indicated earlier on) the fact is that the world is worth keeping as is and so Haruhi must be appeased.  Implied in this view is the notion that Itsuki’s psychic ability is more of a burden than an integral, poisitive part of his personality.

What game is he playing?

What game is he playing?

Next Mikuru comes along and, bound as she is by her faction’s strict requirement for secrecy, manages to tell Kyon that he shouldn’t trust Itsuki.

This just complicates things, of course.  Maybe Itsuki is lying and Mikuru is telling the truth, or maybe it’s the other way around, or maybe they’re both lying!  Significantly, Mikuru adds that Yuki probably thinks the same way as her faction does.

We do get to hear testimony on Mikuru’s faction’s Haruhianschauung, but it comes second-hand by way of Yuki.  Of course, this is problematic from the start, but let’s see first what Yuki actually says.

According to Yuki, Mikuru’s faction believes that all of the strange people and events (which Itsuki would argue were triggered by Haruhi) have belonged to the universe all along.  Haruhi is simply a consciousness that is able to discover these strange phenomena, although for the moment she is unaware of them.  Her awareness is being prevented from rising by Nagato’s faction.  Mikuru’s own group is more than anything interested in controlling the present so that the future they belong to will actually occur.

Playing Kyon?

Playing Kyon??

Yuki’s clinical account belies Mikuru’s own statement to Kyon that these two factions share a view of Haruhi.  Although she doesn’t say it outright, Yuki seems to be putting both Itsuki’s story and Mikuru’s story on the same level and opposing each other, while denying Kyon a chance to hear her own.  This in turn conveys to Kyon (and us) a strong sense that it is Yuki’s faction that actually has a handle on things, although, as she tells Kyon, she could just be lying.

We could try to squeeze more out of Yuki’s spiel, but there’s this to consider: Yuki’s mission is only there to observe what goes on.  There is no reason for her then to feed information to Kyon that would alter his view of Mikuru’s faction, or Itsuki’s for that matter.  The only reason she’s even discussing this is because Mikuru brought it up.

Of course, Yuki could be lying about her mission!  [On her behalf one could bring up the struggle with Asakura, which does circumstantially support her statements regarding her M.O.]

Later, Itsuki talks to Kyon again and attacks Mikuru directly.  Did one of his psychic friends tell him what had gone on between them?  Perhaps.  The important thing is that Itsuki lays out a disturbing interpretation of Mikuru’s “appeal” to Kyon: the moe act is just that, an act.  Itsuki very smoothly plays on his own appeal by phrasing the dilemma thus: “Why do you think she tries to help us?”  He throws dirt on Mikuru while playing on this sense of camaraderie between him and Kyon.  The one thing Itsuki avoids is talking about Yuki’s group.

Kyon's only friend???

Kyon's only friend???

Taking Mikuru’s and Yuki’s statements at face value, and taking Itsuki’s word as an honest expression of his beliefs, we can sum it up as follows: Itsuki’s and Mikuru’s Haruhianschauungen are diametrically different in theory, but lead to similar plans for action.  Whereas Itsuki believes Haruhi is God or a god that is manipulating the universe itself and may destroy it if she isn’t appeased, Mikuru holds that Haruhi is just one special individual in the universe with a role to play.  Itsuki counsels appeasament to stave destruction, Mikuru (according to Yuki) counsels careful control as well, this time to ensure that her own future, which probably bases itself at least partly on Haruhi’s activities, turns out the way it’s supposed to.

And in practical terms this means both Mikuru and Itsuki are primarily interested in controlling Kyon, who is having a great headache by now.

As long as the world continues to exist, then, Itsuki’s faction is being successful.  As long as Mikuru continues to be around her faction is being successful.  Or so it would seem.  And Yuki is there to observe it all.

P.S. Now I have a headache.

~ by Haloed Bane on September 15, 2009.

8 Responses to “Clashing Haruhianschauungen mean a Headache for Kyon”

  1. Oh goody. I couldn’t even begin to discuss this, and am reassured that I’m not the only one lost.

    But I feel that this is a good kind of lost, divorced from the polemics of “is this a good show/a shit show?” “Can I keep on being a hater?” “Am I going to look bad if I say this is interesting?”

    Your assessment in the final paragraph makes sense to me. I’m intrigued, to say the least.

  2. Very interesting and nice post. lies lies lies!

    One thing I was a little surprised about was that you didn’t spin this into a talk of religious factions, and Haruhi’s keeping as a sort of holy war (or very tenuous holy alliance?)

  3. Wow, that’s some excellent interpretation of what occurs in this episode. As someone who’s read the novels, I can’t say that everything you pointed out still stands, but this is a great overall view of this stage in the series. Nice job!

  4. Never trust anyone who smiles all the time. They’re all liars. Every single one.

    Better yet, never trust anyone.

  5. @ghost

    You mean the “I have a headache” part, right? Nah, I get it 🙂

    @digitalboy

    Hmmm…that might be something to think on for the future..

    @yumeka

    Thanx. If we don’t get some sort of announcement real soon on when the next (?) Haruhi anime season will come, I might go on and pick up the novels where I left them (end of book 3).

    @Baka-Raptor

    Good thing for you I can’t see if you’re smiling…

  6. I would rather believe Yuki than Mikuru or Koizumi. Did one of the both save Kyon just once? No, and Mikuru even almost killed him. But Yuki did, several times. There was said, ‘Yuki is special even among the likes of her.’ This speciality is, as I think, feelings for Kyon. If there weren’t any, she wouldn’t disobey her orders to ‘just observe’ and save Kyon. So I think the chances that she is telling truth are greater.

  7. @Gargron

    Makes sense. That’s how I think too….although she could have just been programmed to think and act that way without actually knowing what’s REALLY going on!!

  8. […] Clashing Haruhianschauungen mean a Headache for Kyon […]

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