Junji Ito Maniac Season 1 Episode 12 Recap – “Whispering Woman” / “Soichi’s Beloved Pet”

January 19, 2023
Jonathon Wilson 0
Netflix, Streaming Service, TV, TV Recaps
3

Summary

The anthology returns to the well, revisiting an iconic character, but the first half of this episode has one of the best narrative arcs in the collection.

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3

Summary

The anthology returns to the well, revisiting an iconic character, but the first half of this episode has one of the best narrative arcs in the collection.


This recap of the Netflix anime anthology Junji Ito Maniac: Japanese Tales of the Macabre Season 1 Episode 12, “Whispering Woman” / “Soichi’s Beloved Pet”, contains spoilers.


“Whispering Woman” is adapted from the eighth chapter of Ma No Kakera, and treads unusual territory by being rooted in friendship and a positive bond, even if it ultimately goes a bit haywire and violent as expected, while “Soichi’s Beloved Pet”, taken from New Voices in the Dark, pulls a first for Junji Ito Maniac by returning to the same character featured in a previous story.

Junji Ito Maniac Season 1 Episode 12 Recap

Personally, I preferred the former, about a woman with a strange affliction that cripples her with indecision, and the young woman who is able to get through to her — even after she shouldn’t be able to. The Soichi story is, in many ways, similar to “Four x Four Walls” from earlier in the anthology, another story built around Sochi’s very specific personality and vaguely-defined supernaturalism.

This final episode of the collection features not only a familiar character but familiar themes, with domestic violence cropping up again, like in “Long Hair in the Attic”. The curation of this collection doesn’t seem to have been determined by anything specific, at least not that I can tell, but this matter has been brought up a couple of times, as has lots of visual horror surrounding heads and hair, and sibling relationships.

Neither of these stories has the kind of visual power that some of the previous ones do, but “Whispering Woman” has arguably the best narrative arc in the anthology, telling a nice, complete story that develops in a logical way and amounts to a conclusion that is in-keeping with what came before while still being tinged by Ito’s unique sense of weirdness and bleak violence. I preferred some of the other stories, but this final two-part parting gift is Ito confidently saying farewell.

You can stream the Netflix anime anthology Junji Ito Maniac: Japanese Tales of the Macabre Season 1 Episode 12, “Whispering Woman” / “Soichi’s Beloved Pet” exclusively on Netflix.


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