Mushishi – episode 4

November 21, 2005 on 6:34 pm | In Mushishi | Comments Off on Mushishi – episode 4

“The Pillow Lane”

What a great and terrible episode. Ginko treats a middle-aged man, and now I realise why he does not normally follow this path. The darkness and tragedy inherent to this episode make it easily the best of an already excellent pick.

A year prior to the events of this episode, Ginko met Jin, sword smith who hosted mushi that offered prophetic dreams. He gave the man medicine to calm the situation. When he returns a year later, he finds the village abandoned and ruined. The sword smith tells his tale of woe caused by the mushi …

The nature of the featured Mushi is not so much a surprise as it is excellently realised. I won’t go into it because the whole episode is too profound to dig up. Ginko says of the Mushi and host in question “neither of you are to blame. You were living your life and the Mushi were living theirs”.

The Mushi having infiltrated an adult man makes for a different situation as a man, unlike a child, has established things that he needs to protect. The sort of tragedy is more external than the idea of a child that has been robbed of a future.
The kind of problems that befall Jin are the sorts of things you wouldn’t wish on anyone, and the moral dilemmas that surround every issue are damned heavy.

If Mushishi becomes slightly mysterious each week, I’m going to fear having to be brief in my expression. As it is, I truly believe this episode is a horrible little gift that you have to unwrap by yourself to fully appreciate it.

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