The twelfth episode of Steins;Gate seemed to provide a few answers, either clear or ambiguous, but raised many more with the certain twists and developments, most specifically the beginning and the ending. To understand what’s going on fully would require you to have finished the visual novel or to have finished the anime series and transported your thoughts back in time to make sense of these details and storylines.
Continuously raising the same questions, especially minor ones, will lead to nothing more than simple speculation and might even distract us from the current, important matters. But I can’t help but wonder who John Titor (or Titors) was that helped push Okabe into using his time machine which eventually lead to enough leaps to the current catastrophic timeline. And what about the satellite and its connection to Suzuha? Tack on Kurisu’s behavior and murder in the first episode, too, and you begin to remember all these significant details have been passed over for newer or more relevant twists? Whatever happened to Suzuha looking for her father? Or Moeka’s obsessions with the IBN-5100? Or what did Faris send to the past that revolutionized an urban neighborhood’s identity? I can’t let go of these lingering thoughts and I’m sure many out there have similar thoughts on these meaningful events in the series. And rather than guesstimate here among other fans, I want to see Steins;Gate thoughtfully and thoroughly provide answers and closure to some of these topics.
Rather than drag out this redundant topic again, let’s focus on another subject of Steins;Gate. This one being the ending.
What was outstanding about the twist was no the content but how it was done, at least in terms of cinematography. Certainly I praise the series for revitalizing Moeka into the villain of this timeline and the sudden tragedy that heightened my liking of Mayuri but that’s not the part I loved about this scene. It was brilliantly directed.
The whole scene featured various tight shots of the characters faces detailing their surprise and panic. The lighting changed, gradually from the standard apartment glow to a hazy, white ambiance. The use of time, slowing during various shots, not only tied in with the theme of the anime but helped present a more dramatic atmosphere to the scene. Seeing the characters stand there, speechless and paralyzed, killed the optimistic mood that a majority of the episode built up. The silence, followed by Okabe really solidified it, as well as the regretful sigh let out by Moeka at the end. Oh, what a scene. Oh, how it made me feel.
Okabe was undoubtedly the most intense feature of that scene. Not only could you understand the emotions inside of him for the entire duration, but his voice matched, if not surpassed the animation, in conveying his feelings. Together, through animation and voice, you can distinctly notice the shift between shock, betrayal, fear, sorrow, and lastly, pain. The anime really used the power of animation to elevate this scene above the rest. This, undoubtedly, will by my favorite and most memorable Okabe moment.
With the recent developments in this episode, I am curious to who the first one, besides Okabe, will have their memories transferred to the past. By taking out the main character, you’re left with an open race that almost any character can win. Kurisu looks to be in the lead, seeing as she understands the machinery and concepts better than anyone else. Itaru would be second, for similar but lesser reasons. Moeka would be another candidate for transferring her memories back, seeing as she has a firm understanding of the matters at hand. And of course you have Suzuha, although it seems she obtains her information through other means and is therefore unlikely to resort to using the lab’s upgraded time-machine. I don’t see Faris or Ruka being the first ones to use it, especially since we don’t even know where they are. Hopefully they’re not walking to the lab anytime soon to change sex or city.