This is the second part of my guest appearance on the Senpai Coast to Coast podcast, hosted Josh Dunham. We are talking Bakemonogatari, and in this ninety-ish minutes we cover both the Suruga Monkey and Nadeko Snake arcs.
Show Notes after the jump
Apparitions. On its surface, Bakemonogatari is about teenagers getting rid of apparitions, gods, spirits and demons that are negatively affecting their lives. You may be looking at the title of this post and wondering: What can a story about ghost busting have to say about how we live our lives? Well, an awful lot, actually. In the world of Bakemonogatari, the actions of spiritual beings are deeply connected to the internal, psychological states of human beings. If someone is dealing with an apparition, you can be sure that it is a result of emotional problems–either their own or those of someone they know–overwhelming them. To exorcise the spirits is to confront these emotional problems.
In this post, I will discuss an issue that the show keeps coming back to, carrying emotional burdens. Burden here is sort of a catch-all for: consequences of your choices, memories of traumatic experiences, regrets, longings…You know? Burdens. Bakemonogatari has very specific things to say about how people walk around living with themselves. There are right and wrong ways to do this.
***BAKEMONOGATARI SPOILERS AHEAD***