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xxxHOLiC Episode 2: Favorites

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xxxHOLiC Episode 2 – Quick Summary

In xxxHOLiC episode 2, “Falsehood,” Kimihiro Watanuki could not help but think Yuuko Ichihara used “coercive sales” tactics. Why? Because Yuuko’s new customer, Rin, seemed confused and borderline desperate, and Yuuko went right to the sales pitch. Or did she? Was she really trying a hard-sell to get her infamous equitable payment? Or was something else going on? How far is Kimihiro willing to go to find out?

Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.

Favorite Quote from xxxHOLiC Episode 2

xxxHOLiC Episode 2: At some point, Kimihiro will listen to Mokona

At some point, Kimihiro will have to learn how to interpret Mokona’s sense of humor. This episode was not that time. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

For as spastic as he is, Kimihiro really gets along with Maru, Moro, Mokona. That’s particularly interesting given how much they tease him. Maybe it’s because they’re clearly not cruel about it.

Whatever the reason, he puts up with them despite events like my favorite quote. In this episode, we learned that not only is Kimihiro a compassionate sort who hides it as much as he can. The dude’s also a culinary genius. As in, he can cook anything that Yuuko asks for, at least so far. And she’s not shy about asking!

He had multiple pots and pans in various stages of preparation. One was boiling. As it turns out, unbeknownst to him, it was boiling over.

He was working on a miso dish when Maru, Moro, and Mokona came into the kitchen. Mokona started jumping up and down while trying to cheerfully get Kimihiro’s attention. Mokona kept it up until Kimihiro snapped that he was busy. That didn’t deter the black dumpling.

Finally, Kimihiro stopped what he was doing and demanded to know what Mokona wanted.

“The pot is boiling over,” was the answer (02:11).

“Boiling over,” both Maru and Moro repeated.

If Mokona had led with, “Hey, the pot’s boiling over,” I could say it’s nice to make an effort to be helpful. As it is…

Favorite Moment from xxxHOLiC Episode 2

xxxHOLiC Episode 2: Yuuko saw great things in Kimihiro's future -- literally, I suspect

Yuuko sees something in Kimihiro that he doesn’t see himself. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Setup: It’s Not about Rin

The first time I watched this episode, I remember feeling disappointed that we didn’t see what happened to Rin. The last we saw of her, she was in her hospital bed, all alone, looking uneasy and scared.

As I watched the episode to review it, it occurred to me: she wasn’t the point of the story. She was the vehicle to present the real story, but she wasn’t it. I think I finally figured out what was really going on.

The key to my understanding was my favorite moment. Kimihiro had just returned from witnessing truck-kun (for you isekai fans) trying to Rin to another world. Not only that, but he had accompanied her to the hospital. He didn’t see anyone else to go with her, and she didn’t want to go all alone.

Yuuko had warned him. She told him he couldn’t just come out and tell Rin to stop lying. It’s not that he didn’t listen. It’s that he didn’t want to believe her. He wanted to make a difference; he wanted to help.

xxxHOLiC Episode 2: Yuuko had the wisdom to understand Rin's situation

Yuuko tried to explain the situation to Kimihiro. Is it her fault he lacked the intellectual framework to understand her? Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

Now, Yuuko tried to explain it to him in greater detail, saying (18:07), “A lie is something a person tells and stops telling for their own sake. It’s not something you can just tell a person to do.”

They discussed cause and effect, especially whether Rin’s lying had brought the accident upon her.

Her words carried meaning that challenged his understanding. Kimihiro didn’t give up, and that’s something I respect about him. Trying to get a handle of her meaning, he asked if she knew ahead of time what would happen to Rin – and by extension, if she knew what was going to happen to him.

Delivery: It’s about Kimihiro

Did you see that? He was trying to put the pieces together. He didn’t know exactly what she was saying, but he wrestled with it. That’s not usual. Folks often shy away from what they don’t understand. Kimihiro, though? He sticks with it.

She answered that it might be the case, if that’s what he wanted. When he didn’t get it, she said (19:57), “The world is not just what has existed from before… It is something you make yourself.”

He admitted he didn’t get it. Can I just say how stunning that is? A human, an adolescent male no less, admitting he doesn’t understand something? Dude’s not just a culinary genius. That one trait might just mean he’s a genius over all.

Yuuko turned the moment into a joke. She asked for more food, and that sent Kimihiro into one of his spastic outbursts. But it set the stage for my favorite moment. That was when Yuuko, alone on her divan, listened to the crashing dishes as Mokona, Maru, and Moro once again tried to help Kimihiro cook. 

xxxHOLiC Episode 2: By the end of the episode, Kimihiro still hadn't gotten the hang of Mokona's sense of humor

A culinary genius, yes. A household safety genius? Needs work. Capture from the Crunchyroll stream.

“It certainly is nice to have such a good part-timer,” she said (21:35). “Working hard with such tolerance… Looking after Maru and Moro… And he seems to get along well with Mokona… Watanuki Kimihiro… From now on, take your time making a world for yourself.”

Hearing her say that, it all clicked. The episode was never about Rin. It was about Kimihiro taking his next steps into Yuuko’s world – or the subjective perception he would use to navigate that world. He had to see for himself why he couldn’t just tell Rin to stop lying.  

That kind of subtle story-telling, set against the backdrop of the mysterious Yuuko, is yet another one of the things that draws me to this series. And we’re only on episode 2!

What did you think of Kimihiro’s talk with Himawari Kunogi and Shizuka Doumeki? What were your favorite moments in this episode? Feel free to let me know in the comments!

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2 thoughts on “xxxHOLiC Episode 2: Favorites

  1. Wow, I’ve seen this episode a bunch of times, but I never put the pieces together that it was actually about Watanuki’s personal growth! In that light, this episode make so much more sense. I remember the first time a saw this episode and being pretty confuse when Rin didn’t show up in the next episode. In fact, we don’t even hear if she stopped lying or not, but it makes sense if it was actually about Watanuki. Thanks for the insight! Your reviews are making me like Holic even more than I did before.

    1. Thank you! That’s very kind of you to say.

      The first several times I watched it, I was confused as well. It’s interesting to me that when I watch something with the intent to review it, I notice stuff I didn’t notice before. Guess that means I’m thinking about it more critically!

      This is a wonderful show. I’m going to induct it into the Caw of Fame at some point!

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