Mirai Nikki is certainly a fast paced show. Every time Yuki and Yuno face another diary owner, it’s all over and done with within an episode or two – by then their enemy has either died or retreated. This pacing is certainly keeping each new episode exciting, because you never know what the next episode will bring… a new diary owner? Something involving Minene and/or Kurusu? A hot springs episode? I wouldn’t put anything passed this series!
Episode 8 starts with another get together of the surviving diary owners’ silhouettes at Deus’ epic meeting place. The god points out that a third of them have already died… which works out quite well, since the series is about 1/3 of the way through. Then, one of the owners (whose silhouette looks and sounds like an elderly gentleman) makes a request – he wants to transfer his diary ownership to someone else. Deus seems to find this idea intriguing, and it makes things more interesting for the viewer too; for the first time, we won’t have any idea what a diary owner looks like before they’ve made their appearance.
Two weeks after the incident with Rei, the kid’s sudden disappearance, Yuki’s mother’s injuries and the state of the house have been covered up with some help from Kurusu. Yuki is finally able to go back to school (a new school, what with his old one being blown up by a terrorist and all), but Yuno warns him not to use his diary there again – that’s what attracted so much attention from the other owners to begin with, after all! On the way there, Yuki notices a boy staring at him from the other side of the road, but when he tries to point him out to Yuno, the boy has vanished.
When Yuki arrives at his classroom (a different class to Yuno, unfortunately for her), he is understandably nervous. He doesn’t recognize anybody, and is pretty introverted to begin with… but he also realizes this is his chance to start again and make new friends. However, there is in fact one person from his old school in this new class… and for Yuki, it couldn’t have been a worse person.
This boy, Kousaka, tries his best to ruin Yuki’s prospects in this school as well, talking loudly about how Yuki left his former classmates to die. Fortunately, one girl (called Hinata) whacks Kousaka on the head, shutting him up. She is then joined by another girl, Mao, and the two quickly befriend Yuki.
So with these two girls and the mysterious boy Yuki saw on the way to school, we have a cast of side characters! There haven’t been many so far, but there hasn’t been any need since we could easily rule out who was a diary owner and who wasn’t from the silhouettes. Now that a diary has changed hands, any of them (or none of them) could be owners. Even Kousaka!
Later on, their new teacher warns pupils to travel home in groups, due to the recent serial killings… and no, he’s not referring to Third. Seems someone has filled that vacancy already! Yuki seems to be the only person who doesn’t know about this, so Hinata, Mao and Kousaka fill him in on what they have heard – apparently the killings are quite brutal, involve a lot of bite marks, and the victims are left unidentifiable. Yuki points out that they should be able to identify the culprit from dental records if this is the case, but supposedly the police are keeping things quiet. Mao mentions that another boy, Akise, might know more on the subject. Apparently Akise sits in the desk next to Yuki (or would, except he’s skipping school), and fancies himself as a detective.
After school, Yuno waits by the gates for Yuki to leave, so they can walk home together. However, she wasn’t expecting him to be joined by such a large group of friends:
The group decide to visit the scene of one of the recent serial killings (is ANYONE in this series normal?), slipping passed the police guards with ease.
Afterwards, Yuki and his new friends mess around on the various rides and obstacle courses in this play park… while Yuno follows from a distance. Yuki is worried that she might be angry, but decides to ignore this feeling. After all, it’s not like Yuno’s dangerous when she’s angry or anything…
As they continue to explore the general area around the crime scene, Hinata ends up far ahead of the others without realizing. Hearing a strange sound from the nearby bushes, she heads in alone (as you do) to investigate…
Meanwhile, Yuki is walking at a far more leisurely pace along with the rest of the group… until he hears the sound of his future changing. Fearing for Hinata, Yuki pulls out his diary despite Yuno’s protests that he shouldn’t use it in front of the others. Sure enough, the future now reads that Hinata will end up dead. Yuki runs ahead as quickly as he can, Yuno and his other two very confused companions following behind. Arriving at the spot mentioned in the diary, they find:
Then, out from the woods come a pack of very angry dogs. Yuki and company seem to be frozen on the spot (understandably), until they hear a voice from behind, claiming that he can help:
Apparently the boy detective has been following them since they entered the park (I KNEW he was a stalker!) He introduces himself as Aru, his given name, so I’ll use that from now on to avoid confusion. Somehow he already knows Yuki’s name despite this being the first time they’ve met (total stalker). Most importantly, he points towards a nearby observation building, suggesting they run in that direction. Grabbing Yuki’s hand (much to Yuno’s dismay), he leads them there.
At the Kennels pictured above, we get to meet the diary’s original owner. He prepares an awesome meal of steak and soup, with fine wine.
This food is then fed… to the dogs. They are quite well trained at least, sitting in place, wearing napkins and waiting until everyone else is served before digging in. But still… This scene is made more humourous when the man prepares a ‘cup curry’ instant meal for himself. 😛 But he isn’t just here for comic relief it seems, as behind him is a giant monitor showing a map with several moving red dots – a group of five in front, and a much larger group behind, heading towards a point marked as ‘target’. We also get to see a photograph of his, partially obscured by shadow:
Yuki and the others arrive at the relative safety of the observation deck, but are now surrounded on all sides by dogs. Aru explains to Yuki that he has been investigating him for a few days, finding out that he was involved in several major incidents (i.e episodes 1-7). He believes Yuki has a secret, but not necessarily that he is a bad person – he appeared to be the victim in every case, after all. Yuki decides he is trustworthy… but as ever, Yuno finds it difficult to trust ANYBODY, pointing out that the person controlling the dogs may be among them, and that Aru’s knowledge and convenient appearance at the right time make him the most suspicious.
This finger pointing is put to one side, however, when the dogs begin to bash against the windows of the building. And since the building is an observatory, there are a lot of windows. With so many vulnerable places in need of blocking, they won’t be safe for long… unless they know where to block, and when. Which is something Yuki’s diary can tell him! Of course, it’ll start to look weird if he shouts out predictions of the future to people with no knowledge of the diaries, but with one friend already dead that’s a risk he’s willing to take. His first order is to Kousaka, who refuses to listen, but when Yuki blocks the window himself moments before a dog makes a running jump at it, nobody has any complaints afterwards.
Eventually their (no doubt gruesome) future changes, and the dogs leave. After a brief moment of celebration, it’s explanation time for Yuki.
Kousaka looks confused – if he’s a diary owner, he’s a good actor. Aru accepts Yuki’s story quickly, but claims this is the first time he’s heard of a phone that can predict the future. Yuno simply looks angry at the fact he’s trusting other people over her once again. Which leaves just one more person…
Well, two actually.
Yuno prepares to make a move, but Hinata warns her against it, revealing a pink phone which is apparently her diary – the Breeder’s Diary. I wonder, did that phone belong to the old man to begin with, or did Deus just transfer the content to hers? More importantly, Hinata reveals that Yuki wasn’t her original target (funny how these diary owners use each other to get to their true targets – Minene and Twelfth did the same). So who or what is Hinata really after, then?
And so episode 8 ends. Aru is also an owner… or so Hinata claims. I’m not convinced. We’ve yet to find out how she knows this, hear his reply to her accusation, or see his diary. Murmur-sensei’s segment featuring Aru didn’t reveal anything concrete either. Maybe he’s just a very gifted detective/stalker? All will be revealed soon no doubt, but one thing I do know is that it’d suck to be down to half the owners so early on!