Yami Shibai Episode 5

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let’s have him work to death.

I’m sensing a recurring theme with this series. The producer of this show seems to like commenting on the lack of communication in a family. We saw that with the earlier episode of the son being shut out of the family warding ritual, and here we see it with this nuclear family. The father is forced to go back to work and the wife says since his work is more important than the son’s birthday, they’ll have to go buy it alone.

I really resent the wife for saying that. The whole reason he’s working hard is to provide for his family. And the boy is actually already pretty lucky to have his mom celebrate his birthday for him. Instead, he’s crying away. I kind of find the boy a little spoiled. And wtf possessed the wife to say shit like that?

No wonder the husband wanted to be left alone as he went into the lift. And as you know, lift ladies grant all your wishes. So, the lift descends and the way the atmosphere of the lift was drawn was brilliant. All gloomy and with strangers. It’s kind of like how anyone feels in a lift. It’s always a little scary when the lift doors open on a place that’s not your floor, because you never know what might be on the other side.

The father descends, and he encounters weird floors. One floor, B13, was eerily red and had a guy who ran straight for the elevator, which shut just before he could get on. That was when I had the inkling that they were basically going to hell. Or his nightmare.

After that scary situation, we encounter the next department store horror- the mannequin. Faceless and wordless humanoids, it turns out the elevator girl was one! She collapses to the floor when the father taps her shoulder. The door opens and he’s back at the department are where he left his wife and son.

Or is he? The place is now devoid of people and the lights slowly go out. Being in a department store at closing is scary. The whole place is rows of empty shops where people used to be. It’s more echo-y and every sound you make is too loud in the quiet. He starts running back to the lift in fear and we see the elevator girl can move again. She looks at him as the door closes, leaving him truly alone and granting his wish.

This episode had a high dread factor. The jump scares weren’t as scary in this one, but the build-up and music was all intense. They seem to have gotten better at timing the sound and animation. While this isn’t a traditional horror story, it’s a “realistic” modern one, because we’ve all wondered about what’s on the other side of the elevator when the doors are closed. Being trapped in a windowless box as it hurtles way up high, being suspended only by cables, is a pretty scary experience if you think too deeply about it. If something happens between floors, no one will hear you scream.

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