Ai continues on her strange journey with Hampnie Hambart who’s looking for a girl named Hana as well as the one thing an immortal is ever searching for – a way to die. A LOT of plot twisting in this episode. Please watch the episode before you read on unless you’re really looking for highlights!
“I like people. I couldn’t bear to be the last person in this world… The last person left! Who would want that? With absolutely no one else left, I would remain forever and ever and ever!” –Hampnie Hambart
It’s strange how a little girl like Ai can see through Hampnie’s cold façade and unreadable exterior. Just before Hampnie can respond to her words, Hampnie spots a signal flare fired into the sky and kicks Ai over the bridge. After she’s off the bridge and saved by Julie/Yuri (character spelling varies), he tells her that the bridge was about to become a battlefield and that Hampnie’s must useful attack is a suicide self-bombing since he himself is an immortal.
Though Yuri may hate Hampnie, he understands his personality pretty well, telling Ai that he doesn’t resort to violence for no reason. Yuri reveals that Hampnie wasn’t as callous when he was with the woman he loved… Julie shows Ai a photograph of his own family as well as Hampnie with the woman he loved. Ai instantly recognizes her mother’s smile. Ai realizes that Hampnie’s really her father.
Flashing out to where Hampnie’s captured. His enemies know that Hampnie loses his memories when he dies under great pressure. Hampnie has been captured by a creepy guy named Hiko who seems to be the leader and is obsessed with Hampnie. Hiko’s kinda insane and misinterprets Hampnie’s desire to die with something like dark justice against God. Hampnie reveals the true intentions behind his wish to live happily and die happily. Hampnie’s truly a formidable character, lasting long enough for Scar and the others to save him.
Ai’s pretty amazing, coming out to tell Hampnie of her mother, claiming that she’s truly his real daughter. She’s even come to realize that everyone in the village was long dead, they had been pretending to be among the living, making Ai their gravekeeper. This was the secret that Hampnie had been keeping from her.
Scar’s pretty badass for a cheerful and positive gravekeeper. Ai refuses to leave Hampnie despite his pleas for her to run. Apparently gravekeepers can fight pretty well with their trusty shovels… Amidst the battle, Hampnie reflects on his role as a father and the serendipity of having met Ai. After he’s freed, Hampnie finally tells her his real name – Kizuna Astin. With the stunning animation, outstanding art and dramatic script, Hampnie’s death is one of the most touching moments I’ve ever witnessed in any anime series. You don’t see father-daughter moments like these often.
When Hampnie awakens as one of the dead, he spends his last day with Ai before she finally buries him next to her mother and his final wish is fulfilled. I teared up as they ran the credits!
“Here lies a man who was born a human, lived as a human, and died as a human.” -Scar
Ai’s dream is to become a gravekeeper and now she continues her journey alone. “If God abandoned this world, then I will save it.”
I can’t believe they killed off a main character in the third episode!! I’m both really sad and confused. I thought Hampnie would stay for the entirety of the show, if not at least two-thirds of it. What was the secret behind his immortality? What’s his back story? This was a crazy shocking conclusion to the first arc and I’m not sure if the story development that comes after can top this. For a moment I thought the anime was going to end right then and there, and even if it did, it was a pretty good (three episode) adventure. What do you guys think? What’s going to happen next? I need the next episode now!
What are you pondering today?