*VERY HUGE SPOILERS AHEAD*

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Summary:

It’s time for “school duties,” which involves pairing a girl and boy together.  Saki’s asked out by Ryou, who’s a long time friend—but wait; that doesn’t seem right, does it?  Saki seems to remember someone else, but she can’t remember his name or face.  It seems to her like a distant memory…

I love the “reflection in the ice” effect here.

The shading in this sequence was so pretty, asdfsdfsdf

One night, she gets a strange dream, where someone telepathically communicates with her.  It’s that mystery boy who she has scant memories of.  He reminds her of someone else she’s forgotten—her older sister.  The next morning, Saki looks through some old belongings and finds a mirror that her sister owned.  It even has her sister’s name on it.  To Saki, this almost cements the notion she’s feared: her and her friends’ memories have been altered.

Saki was so beautiful in this scene… Oh man, most of the caps for this series are going to be me gushing about how pretty everything is, huh?

The next day, after parings (Saki ends up getting paired with Satoru while Maria pairs up with Mamoru); Saki discusses this with her friends.  They all seem to remember some mystery person too, but every time they try to remember, it feels as if a strange force is preventing them.  They do, however, remember where this mystery person lived, so they go visit his village.  His village turns out to be destroyed and abandoned.  When they get to the place where his home is supposed to be, they instead find a large lake that’s been roped off.  At around this point, Mamoru freaks out and asks the others to stop talking about this, as they are “breaching the ethics laws.”

At first I though Maria had just rejected Mamoru from being her partner, but then I realized… she had rejected all the boys in the background.

After Mamoru goes home, Saki, Maria, and Satoru discuss this issue for a bit longer.  However, Maria also begs Saki not to talk about this subject anymore, for Mamoru’s sake.  Not long after, all three kids are summoned by Satoru’s grandmother, who happens to be the chairperson of the Ethics Committee.  And what’s worse, she wants to talk to them all… separately.

Even though Shun’s village has been abandoned, it still makes for some gorgeous scenery.

My Opinion:

Yet another solid Shin Sekai Yori episode.  This time, we shown the lengths that Saki’s school goes to in order to keep the order.  Apparently, they are not above altering people’s memories.  Although this was already hinted at in episode 9 when Saki suddenly remembers her sister, episode 11 confirms that theory.

This episode doesn’t have much “action,” but I really loved it because it was so atmospheric.  There are a lot of nice little shifts in art style here, making this episode a treat for the eyes.  But the thing I loved most about this episode was Saki’s interactions with her friends, especially when they were discussing their altered memories.  I love Saki’s strong will, and her insistence on trying to remember Shun when nearly all her friends brushed it off at first.  Her strong will contrasts nicely with the three remaining main characters.  While Satoru is just as strong-willed as her, Mamoru is proven to be extremely sensitive.  More surprisingly though, Maria is also shown to be rather “weak-willed,” despite her confident nature.  This episode really shows how subtle the characters are.  Sure they may at first seem to follow typical anime archetypes, but they’re much more complex than that.

With the school and Ethics committee growing creepier by the episode, I really wonder what’s in store for Saki and her friends next.  Now that Saki must meet with Satoru’s grandmother, the previews show that there are some more possible revelations coming up next episode.

Out of five for this episode, I give:

precure heart2  precure heart2  precure heart2  precure heart2

(Finally changed the ratings picture! Anyone who knows what this is from gets a virtual gold star)

Man is this screencap foreboding…

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