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Bakemonogatari Episode 6: Suruga Monkey, Part One

するがモンキー 其ノ壹, Japan, 08 August 2009, Raymond Santos Estrella

Koyomi is followed on his way home from school by Mayoi, and when she asks, he tells her about his plans later to study with Hitagi for the upcoming placement tests. His walk home, however, is interrupted by the sudden arrival of underclassman Kanbaru Suruga, the ace of the basketball team. She calls this an unexpected meeting, but Koyomi knows that she’s been following him, and he finds out that she hasn’t been doing basketball lately because of her bandaged left hand. Suruga claims to want to talk about current world affairs, but Koyomi doesn’t want to, and he ends up telling her about the studying that he’ll be doing with Hitagi. After Suruga runs off again, Koyomi explains to Mayoi that Suruga has been following him around recently, and Mayoi suggests that Suruga may be in love with him.

Warning! The following summary contains spoilers.

Story

Later that day, when Koyomi is with Hitagi, she asks him about his plans for the future because she wants to go down the same path as him. Since he doesn’t have the grades to make it into a university, she suggests that they could live together, and Koyomi ends up agreeing. Hitagi also reveals that she’s never broken up with a man, and she has no intention to do so with him. Koyomi then asks her about doing track back in junior high school, so she emphasizes that she has no reason to do it any more because she doesn’t want to return to those times. That leads to Koyomi asking her about Suruga, and Hitagi almost attacks him for implying that he’s close with Suruga. Hitagi admits that she and Suruga used to be close, but the two of them fell apart after Suruga found out about Hitagi’s secret and Hitagi treated her the same way she initially treated Koyomi.

Hitagi thinks that Suruga is following Koyomi around after finding out that they were dating and that Suruga had a crush on her. The two then finish their studying, and Koyomi heads home, but along the way, he decides to call Tsubasa to ask about Hitagi and Suruga. Tsubasa explains that the two used to be known as the Valhalla Combo based on the word combination of the ends of their last names, and she also gives Koyomi some advice on his relationship with Hitagi. She believes that Hitagi has put up an impregnable self-field around herself and doesn’t like associating with others, and she suggests that it’s better for him not to look too much into Hitagi’s past.

After ending his call with Tsubasa, Koyomi thinks about how he wants Hitagi to regain what she lost and threw away. He also remembers that he forgot to take with him the payment that Hitagi wanted him to give to Oshino for his services. His thoughts, however, are interrupted when he notices a cloaked figure behind him, and this person suddenly punches him in the face. Koyomi is still reeling from the first hit when the person delivers several more, and he ends up collapsing with a bloodied face. He notices though that there are bandages hanging out from this person’s sleeves, and he’s reminded of Suruga’s bandaged left hand. The person then disappears however, and the next thing Koyomi knows, Hitagi is standing over him with the money he forgot.

Conclusion

I understand that this series has a lot of exposition that can pay off in a satisfying way once everything is revealed/explained (as evidenced by last episode), but I have to say that it doesn’t make me feel much better about the set-up episodes like this one. Certainly Hitagi threatening Koyomi’s eye was interesting, as was the very brief action scene at the end of the episode, but I zoned out at least twice in between, like when Tsubasa was trying to give Koyomi advice. I’ve said before that I like how Horie Yui voices her, but that segment was just boring, and nothing she said after the Valhalla stuff struck me as particularly important.

What I do think is noteworthy though is Hitagi and Suruga’s past relationship and how Hitagi said that she’d never broken up with a guy. The implication of course is that she could have broken up with a girl, and that statement would still remain true. I also think it’s pretty obvious that they’re pointing us towards Suruga being Koyomi’s assailant, and I imagine it’s because she still has feelings for Hitagi or something along those lines. The fact that it’s her arm that’s bandaged and that the title of the arc is Suruga Monkey reminds me of the monkey’s paw story from xxxHOLiC, which was in turn based on the original short story, and it made me wonder if something similar is in play here. We’ll have to wait an extra week to find out though because most of the channels broadcasting this are still catching up after airing that recap special, and MBS is taking a two-week break. Episode seven will air on August 21st.

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Comments (40)

  • Cage

    Cage

    11 August 2009 at 01:20 |

    I thought this episode was entertaining enough from the interaction between Koyomi and Hitagi. I’m looking forward to seeing how they’re relationship plays out.

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  • Silivious

    Silivious

    11 August 2009 at 01:21 |

    Sweet action. :D

    reply

  • Chimasternmay

    Chimasternmay

    11 August 2009 at 01:34 |

    hey i was also reminded of the Monkey paw story from xxxHOLiC, i thought they might be similar in legend or something, anyway this was a good episode, sucks that we have to wait like 2 weeks for more, after the end like that. still there was plenty to enjoy here.

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  • xcswmboy

    xcswmboy

    11 August 2009 at 01:36 |

    I think Hitagi saying she’s never broken up with a guy can also mean that she makes the guy break up with her.
    i liked the end of this ep, i laughed abit after realizing Koyomi can heal up afterwards.

    reply

  • Grant

    Grant

    11 August 2009 at 01:42 |

    Irritating that there won’t be a new one out but that’s the way it goes. Suruga looks to be an interesting character even if she might be a yandere.

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  • Burnt Toast

    Burnt Toast

    11 August 2009 at 01:48 |

    I wished Koyomi would have shown off some of his Vampire powers after being punched. Instead he just got his ass kicked.

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  • sean

    sean

    11 August 2009 at 01:52 |

    it mite seem obvious to u that theyre doing that but nothing is what it seems in bakemonogatari lol

    reply

  • treble89

    treble89

    11 August 2009 at 01:53 |

    poor araragi…almost lost his eye,and now attack by a beast?!

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  • ReshenKusaga

    ReshenKusaga

    11 August 2009 at 01:55 |

    @Burnt Toast, I was under the impression that the only abilities he’s got are faster than normal healing, possibly sight from episode 3, but that could be explained as Senjougahara just couldn’t see Mayoi.

    I loved when Hitagi completely caved and told Senjougahara that he wanted to live together with her. Her witty comments make her one of my favorite characters of all time.

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  • Burnt Toast

    Burnt Toast

    11 August 2009 at 02:07 |

    @ReshenKusaga, True. But it still would have been cooler if he still had other residual powers. There was a part at 22:03 where it focus on his mouth and him breathing. Would have been cool to see some fangs slowly inch down a bit.

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  • ductrinh999

    ductrinh999

    11 August 2009 at 02:18 |

    English Sub High Quality already released at GoGoAnime

    reply

  • roger

    roger

    11 August 2009 at 02:28 |

    This is one confusing anime. Have to watch really close to get what is going on.

    reply

  • marinelzen

    marinelzen

    11 August 2009 at 02:46 |

    Tsubasa’s always in her school uniform, at night and on mothers day.

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  • anonymous

    anonymous

    11 August 2009 at 03:06 |

    lol first punch was effn brutal. she reminds me of taokaka

    reply

  • vin-nii

    vin-nii

    11 August 2009 at 03:36 |

    arararararararararararara…gi-san

    reply

  • minitune

    minitune

    11 August 2009 at 04:32 |

    I wonder what Hitagi’s job is? For that matter what does her father do for a living. Perhaps something… indecent?

    reply

  • sean

    sean

    11 August 2009 at 04:39 |

    i just realized if u look closely at the ending theme song you can see hachikuji and kanbaru and araragi in it and i think the girl singing it is supposed to be hitagi.

    reply

  • Ronnie

    Ronnie

    11 August 2009 at 05:57 |

    How did Hitagi get that much money by helping out her dad, and within such a short period of time?

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  • Reekon

    Reekon

    11 August 2009 at 06:41 |

    I’m completely drawn in by the word play in this anime. =)

    By the way, I noticed that in that flashback, Kanbaru took a basketball shot without any bandages in her arm. And then the next stills show her lying on the floor already with bandages.

    So given the Monkey’s paw original story in Wiki, I’m guessing that her basketball skill is the “payment” for her wish? So maybe she can’t play anymore? or that her arm will forever be disfigured?

    I’m just wondering what she wished for though. One would think that she’d wish for Hitagi to get back with her…

    Aarrggh…. the suspense!!! And a 2 week wait at that. This is driving me mad. =P

    reply

  • Dando008

    Dando008

    11 August 2009 at 06:48 |

    @Wuuhuu: If you slow-mo the action you would be able to see the a left hook coming staight at Araragi that caused him to fly and roll at around 50 feet or so. The first punch itself was just pretty fast, in which I think was animated in that way to see the bandages…

    reply

  • JCz

    JCz

    11 August 2009 at 08:37 |

    Did any1 notice that Hitagi’s hair changed to brown towards the end of the episode? Does it signify anything? The world wonders~

    reply

  • Actarus

    Actarus

    11 August 2009 at 08:48 |

    the little hachikuji make me laugh a lot, especially when she talks about hitagi and koyomi relationship…:D really nice the ending to me too.

    reply

  • Fon

    Fon

    11 August 2009 at 08:58 |

    It’s kinda sad… Araragi lies on the ground covered in blood and all Senjougahara has to say is “oh you forgot the money” ?? I seems like she has no feelings for him at all
    poor Arararagi (oh I stuttered :P) anyways is this going to keep up? or will Senjougahara someday realize what a kind, reliable lover she has (for teh lulz)
    looking forward to the next episode ofc!
    I agree with most of the comments here… they set up a scene and you have to watch the next episode to be satisfied…

    ok thats all cya :)

    reply

  • Karisu

    Karisu

    11 August 2009 at 09:12 |

    Boring? We watching the same episode, right? I watched the one that wasn’t boring at all.

    I’m confused though, because reading the synopsis above sounds like the same episode I watched, but your thoughts on it don’t match up at all.

    reply

  • Boogiepop

    Boogiepop

    11 August 2009 at 10:26 |

    yeah two weeks…zetsubashitaaaaaa!!

    reply

  • Hiwatari

    Hiwatari

    11 August 2009 at 11:28 |

    The scene at the end really hyped me, just like the first episodes op.

    reply

  • Megas

    Megas

    11 August 2009 at 11:38 |

    You ppl are easily entertained or something. This crapper was a yawn-fest. It was too predictable. They tried to fix it in the end but the scene was over 5 seconds after it started. Rejection drama never fanciedmy tastes anyway. It my experience, they always end with someone flying through a window or getting slugged down the street, yawn.

    If I was Hitagi, I also wouldn’t be concerned about a sub-immortal lying on the ground covered in blood…especially when he’s up & kicking in a minute or so. Oh, & I’m starting to can’t get enough of how goofy Koyomi & Mayoi can be when they start to interact. He’s basically treating her just like his sisters. I love how ddirect he is with everyone…maybe that’ll help him solve that beast bitch too.

    reply

  • Toma

    Toma

    11 August 2009 at 12:02 |

    If Araragi was still a vampire the fight would have been awesome.

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  • X

    X

    11 August 2009 at 14:50 |

    Same here, if Araragi could summon some of his lingering vampire abilities, like his speed and strength then the fight would’ve been awesome! I mean I just watched the first opening in the first episode, when he was shown fighting the vampire, it was really cool. So I really hope that they animate Koyomi Vamp arc.

    @minitune and Ronnie: Isn’t that because Senjougahara’s family is rich? I mean initially they were very rich, until of course her mom got into the cult and lost a big fortune. So her parents got divorced and she ended up living with her dad, so that would mean her dad is at least financially viable. Plus we never heard of her dad having any problems, it was entirely her mom’s fault that they had lost their house and most of their fortune, but in the end I guess her dad must be bringing a good amount of money. Also I doubt the job is indecent, after all we heard her confess that she is a “late-bloomer crazy virgin girl” lol.

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  • BROOKLYN otaku

    BROOKLYN otaku

    11 August 2009 at 15:57 |

    ^^^^^ claymation.

    reply

  • shido101

    shido101

    11 August 2009 at 16:25 |

    Can’t wait for the next episode!!
    When his covered in blood his fangs do seem a bit longer. It may be due to a sudden blood loss. His vampire abilities may be fading, but in such situations faster healing may not be enough and his body may crave for fresh blood:)
    Also Araragi doesn’t seem to be surprised at all when he sees Senjougahara. Interestingly he greets her in a very formal way: “gobusata” instead of a informal and highly used “hisashiburi”.

    reply

  • Black_Otaku

    Black_Otaku

    11 August 2009 at 17:31 |

    Senjougahara is scary when she gets jealous.

    Dude, I’m beginning to think Araragi will end up with someone else other than Senjougahara. But, biggest question is “HOW THE HELL IS HE GOING TO BREAK UP WITH HER WITHOUT GETTING HIMSELF KILLED?!”

    I feel pissed that I have to wait two weeks for a brand new episode and I’ll be in College by then! Oh well!

    reply

  • damian

    damian

    11 August 2009 at 21:51 |

    Im glad Mayoi was kept around. her interactions with araragi make for some good laughs

    On another note, are we ever gonna see those scenes from the first episode showing Araragi’s fight scenes as a vampire?

    reply

  • Jin

    Jin

    12 August 2009 at 03:50 |

    As usual the interactions between Senjogahara and Hitagi were interesting and fun. It does seem like whenever its not Hitagi interaction it drags but thats ok as long as they keep her in every episode.

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  • Diss

    Diss

    12 August 2009 at 15:07 |

    Yeah Raymond if you are expecting a fight/revelation per week than this series isn’t for you. ‘Course I’m not 12 and I don’t find the standard shounen story arc structure very interesting anymore so different strokes for different folks I guess.

    reply

  • ahelo

    ahelo

    21 August 2009 at 02:21 |

    wow. intense action in the end

    reply

  • JaredDrake

    JaredDrake

    23 August 2009 at 01:33 |

    So, Araragi has super-healing and vision (evidenced in Mayoi Snail)… does he get anything else from being a former vampire?

    reply

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