I’m glad I waited and did not watch the cam-rip edition of The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya film. The film itself is a stunning visual spectacle. It won’t give you the grand landscapes of Mononoke Hime, or the sustained fluid action of Sword of the Stranger, or the detailed and diverse imagery of Paprika; it basically takes a GIGA DRILL to a thumb wrestling match and animates the quietest of scenes with ridiculous powers.
I’m talking about the coffee shop conversation between Kyon, Koizumi and Haruhi where their table is by the window. The whole scene you can see Kyon talking by the window while regular traffic passes by outside (no car repeats itself), and you can even see Koizumi’s reactions to Kyon via translucent reflection. Insane. Thank Yuki I can view this in 1080p high definition.
But I’m not here to discuss the merits of the film. I liked it a lot, suffice to say. Sugita delivered a performance of a lifetime to carry here via Kyon’s monologues. The film ties in so tightly with everything shown in the franchise so far, making for a satisfyingly intricate plot. The conceit of this film (and Kyon’s growth) allowed the female cast to exist primarily as moé fanservice, and it’s of an amazing standard. I’m here to discuss the spoils of Kyon’s victory.
Kyon, by working out his true feelings about the world he was thrust in revolving around Haruhi, chooses it over the mundane alternative: a world where Haruhi as God disappeared. Not only has Haruhi lost her God powers along with anything supernatural in the whole firmament (so I assume), Haruhi isn’t even in the same school. In so doing he worked out the incredible toll the whole thing (considerable, accounting the whole extent of Endless Eight) took on Nagato Yuki. Kyon also came to realize how irresponsible he’s been in letting Nagato to do all of the work, while he does little but complain about his circumstances.
For him, Nagato has grown into a human person, and with it his own feelings for her which include acrimony towards the Integrated Data Sentient Entity who programmed her in what Kyon believes to be a severely limited personality.
Kyon threatened the Integrated Data Sentient Entity that should it remove Nagato Yuki from her post, he will cause Armageddon by revealing to Suzumiya Haruhi that he is the John Smith who will change the world.
Kyon threatened to destroy the universe if anybody messes with his harem. It’s a touching gesture truly, and it honors the work and growth of Nagato Yuki which is beyond my reckoning at this point. However, is this a responsible policy?
In Disappearance, Kyon resolves to no longer remain as a bystander, a heckler from the cheap seats endlessly complaining but never playing on the court. Well, he sure is a player now!
Take the scene between Kyon and Nagato on the hospital rooftop.
Kyon is on bended knee, proposing (policy) to Yuki:
Pass along this message to your boss:
If you ever disappear or go away, know this–
I will let all hell break loose. I will do anything it takes to bring you back. I don’t have any powers myself, but I sure as hell can stir up Haruhi.
Kyon then monologued internally:
That’s why I’ve been keeping a trump card. All I’d need to do is tell her, “I am John Smith.” That’s right. I have about as much power as a sponge, but Haruhi is stupidly powerful. If Nagato ever disappears, I will reveal everything to her and make her believe me.
After that we’d embark on a quest to get Nagato back. Even if the Integrated Data Sentient Entity hides her somewhere, Haruhi would be able to do something.
I’d force her to, and I’d drag Asahina-san and Koizumi into it as well. Nagato is our compainion. If any of our members went missing, Haruhi wouldn’t take it lying down. Thats the kind of person Suzumiya Haruhi is. Selfish and egotistical and inconsiderate, our nuisance of a brigade chief […]
Kyon reflects on how the IDSE could’ve made Nagato with a different, more emotionally broad character but they didn’t. Then he told Yuki,
If they have any complaints, I will take Haruhi and recreate the world completely. We’ll make a world where you’re here, and the Integrated Data Sentient Entity doesn’t exist.
Nagato acknowledges the message and tells Kyon he will tell the IDSE his message.
Is this the resolution of someone who chooses to work with the elites to protect the world? It seems to me that this is the resolution of someone who wants to protect his world. He’s found his thresholds. He’s fine with the chaos and inconvenience that Haruhi causes because:
- Dere-dere~ Haruhi is mighty nice (and she’ll be like this frequently enough)
- As much as Koizumi’s, Asahina’s and Nagato’s existences revolve around Haruhi, theirs also revolve around him. As much as he can threaten the IDSE, he can threaten each of them.
- He is King and the SOS is his harem (Koizumi is his eunuch).
When Kyon talks about fulfilling his responsibility to the end. He may just be talking about a responsibility to himself, and perhaps his friends. To be responsible for all of existence is after all, a big thing to ask from a high school student.
When Haruhi disappeared from the world, did Kyon pray to her? I think Nagato became the Goddess that made Haruhi disappear, and Kyon may just have founded a new religion around her instead.
I’m very glad too that I watched this show this late, and found it appropriately set on Christmastime. Whomever you worship or whether you do so at all, Merry Christmas!