Hunter x Hunter 47 – Irreversible

Hunter x Hunter is where the pure and the morally bankrupt all dine in the same place and exchange skins.

“How can you do these things yet feel and think nothing at all?!”

After finally coming face to face with one of the people who massacred his tribe, it wasn’t surprising to see Kurapika ask how is it even possible to kill someone and not feel anything at all? He’s been raised in a cruel world that essentially tests Kurapika’s very being. He’s not one to enjoy the thrill of the fight like Gon, nor is he a trained killer like Killua. Kurapika’s formation as a person was the result of a harsh childhood, his goals were shaped by a painful and traumatic experience and thus, he dedicates his life eliminating the Phantom Troupe.

Hunter x Hunter sure is bleak. In less than a minute, you’re forced to think if Kurapika has gone too far. The tables turn awfully fast. There’s something about the way this episode portrayed Uvogin that got to me. He was slowly accepting his death, finally coming into terms with what fate has in store for him. In a true display of irony, Uvogin never sold out his other troupe members even if it meant him dying, an act we often see  ‘good guys’ do.

The progression of  the battle is quite unexpected as well, it starts out as an adrenaline pumping ride, gradually transitioning into brutal torture. The series has never been the type to sugarcoat things. HxH has a tendency to lure the audience in with the promise of something ‘awesome’ only to remind you that there are always real repercussions to the choices our characters make.

Another scene that reflects this harsher outlook Hunter x Hunter applies is when Kurapika goes out of his way to prepare a shovel and even goes through the effort of burying Uvogin. Seeing the large and well built Uvogin reminds you that this was the same character who smashed people’s heads an episode ago and now he’s dead.

I’ve been seeing comparisons between this and the ’99 series and I have to say that this episode was more harrowing to me. While I respect the ’99’s series take, the 2011’s version blurs the line between the protagonist and the antagonist. Madhouse’s choice to focus most of the episode’s time on Kurapika and Uvo makes this a far more intimate experience for the viewer.

It’s these these things that take an episode from just being good to superb. This week’s installment is one of the best episodes to air all year, a fine showcase of Hunter x Hunter’s stark and layered narrative.

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  1. i really love how heroic uvo is to his comrades while kurapika is being very antagonist here. it’s like.. seriously, the one who is supposed to be protagonist is torturing someone very cruelly ? wow. and even it is shown that he dislike it, he just.. do it anyway. while the one who is supposed to be antagonist is just.. taking the viewers’ symphaty like.. the hell kurapika!! poor uvo T_T

  2. I don’t really feel bad for Uvo. I mean, there’s no telling how innocent people he’s killed. Just being his loyal to his comrades doesn’t change the fact that he’s a murderer who took part in killing Kurapika’s clan. He got what he deserved. :/

    • You may be missing the point though, Hunter x Hunter doesn’t completely invalidate any of Uvo’s crimes– it’s simply asking the question if Kurapika’s methods are any better than the Phanton Troupe’s. In the end of the day, regardless of who it is– taking a human life is a heavy burden to carry and you can see that here. I don’t know if you’ve read the manga, but this has been the case for many of the characters.

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