School festivals are a staple of any high school anime, and the main character’s class typically goes with one of a few stereotypical selections. Given the fact that this is a show about a girl who can see ghosts, it only makes sense that Hibiki and her classmates would choose to put together a haunted house event. This, of course, serves a larger purpose than a simple school festival episode. As the early portion of the episode progresses, Hibiki’s friends (and, by extension, the viewers) are introduced to Hibiki’s father. This serves to launch into a series of flashbacks about how Hibiki’s parents met, along with the detail that Hibiki’s mother could also see and communicate with ghosts. Hibiki’s father, on the other hand, was more like Inoue—in fact, his hair turned white from shock and fear after only a week of dating his wife. As amusing as this portion of the episode is, it does set up an allusion to the idea that Hibiki and Inoue are intended to be more than just friends, which is an extremely annoying idea at best (not to mention uncalled for).
The second half of the episode actually focuses on the school festival itself, trailing off to put the spotlight on Inoue, who is forced to hand out fliers that only serve to scare her. This leads to her encountering Hibiki’s dad, and the two of them share a moment together, allowing for even more sentimental flashbacks to Hibiki’s mom before hilarity ensues. Inoue’s costume causes her to bear a resemblance to Hibiki, which apparently misleads the ghosts into offering their help to her as they would to Hibiki. Of course, since Inoue and Hibiki’s dad are both terrified of ghosts, this ends up being a frightening ordeal that sends them both tearing through the school.
All-in-all, this is a very good backstory episode that helps to flesh out Hibiki’s character a bit while also adequately introducing her dad. For once, we have an anime dad who is fairly normal. Overprotective, sure (we know this from a previous episode), but not over-dramatically so (see Working! for a go example of that). He is amusing and fits right into the antics of the show. The suggestion of Hibiki x Inoue remains a point of frustration, but hopefully this will only be a running gag, as opposed to the purpose of their relationship. Or hopefully it will be dropped altogether. Time will tell.
A Christian Perspective:
2 Corinthians 6:14 – Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?
If you’ve been a Christian for any length of time, then you’ve probably heard the above Scripture used to explain that it is wrong for Christians to marry non-Christians. If you’ve heard that before, then you probably know where I’m going with this: Hibiki’s parents.
As shown in this episode, Hibiki’s mom was able to see ghosts and made no real effort to hide it, while Hibiki’s dad was completely terrified of the supernatural, ultimately ending up with a head full of white hair because of his constant exposure to it (and subsequent shock/fear). While this is a more humorous attempt at explaining a biblical principle, I feel the point still stands. For as much as the two may have loved each other, they were incompatible, and it ultimately had a negative affect on one of them.
For Christians, it’s a bit more serious than that, because by marrying an unbeliever we are inviting someone who does not share the same beliefs or values as we do into the most intimate relationship possible (besides the one we have with God, of course). To think that we can let someone come that close to us and have them not affect our devotion to God and how we live for Him is ludicrous, and we would do well to consider that. Hibiki’s dad lost the color in his hair by staying with a woman whose abilities brought him terror. We stand to lose a whole lot more if we marry someone and allow them to pull us away from God.
Spiritual Content: The usual stuff: Hibiki (and her mom, in flashbacks) can see and talk to ghosts; Hibiki’s mom appears to be possessed at one point; Hibiki talks about leaving offerings for the dead; it is suggested that Hibiki’s mom could see the future; ghosts appear and scare people
Language: 2 “h*ll”
Alcohol/Drug Use: None
Violence: A ghost swats Eroneko out of the way
Blood/Gore: Fake blood is painted on the walls of the haunted house
Other: Eroneko is Eroneko; suggestions are made to the effect of Hibiki having feelings for Inoue; Eroneko flips Inoue’s dress and comments on her underwear (the viewer sees no underwear, though)
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