[The Ohtori Archives] Tricksy Twinses

Episode 5…in which the twins are devious menaces and should never be let out in public, ever. Especially when they’re bored.

Since this chapter is about the twins and they are a brand of Crazy that cannot be contained by reverse-harem Manga formula, we skip the usual opening Bishie Freeze frame and jump right into Kermit-Flailing Tamaki fussing at the twins. I would say that I’m surprised, except that I’d be lying. I’d by lying a lot. Our Representative of the Lollipop Guild Host King once again proves that stupidity is a contagious and debilitating disease in his case by the sheer fact that he trusted the twins with a job under the understanding that they wouldn’t fuck around. If there was ever a moment to insert an incredulous laugh track into this blog, this is it. Super Blonde gave the twins unsupervised access to the Host Club site and actually thought they wouldn’t mess with it.

Apparently, the twins are going for the blasé “I have no idea what you’re talking about” thing, since they are doing beautiful impersonations of a dead-pan Haruhi. Speaking of the indentured servant debtor student, BAM! Shirtless Bishie-Dazzle Freeze Frame in your FACE that proves that Edward Cullen is doing it WRONG. While Tamaki sees harassment of Haruhi’s precious photos (which is all sorts of crazy), the twins see opportunity. Since Haruhi can’t take half-naked photos for the Host Club’s exploitation (at least, not without having to EXPLAIN ALL THE THINGS), the twins make a sparkling Frankenbeast Bishie composite photo out of Haruhi’s head and Tamaki’s torso, which…you know what? No. I am not going to think about that. Those images need to go away and die.

Just when I think Tamaki is turning into the “stop messing with Haruhi, you brats” type of guy, it turns out all his fussing was because they composited Haruhi’s photo into a boy, instead of putting her in a frilly dress. FAIL. Serious brain FAIL. This man’s dick Herp-Derp has obviously eaten away at his brain since he seems to have forgotten, again, that Haruhi cannot pose as a girl without being discovered as a girl. If Haruhi is not feeling the chagrin, she should be. Her fate rests in this Bimbo’s well-kept, manicured hand. Flee now, while you still can!

Meanwhile, the twins are being remarkable un-Twincestuous while they pester Haruhi to get her to let them visit her house. This entire panel practically has the subtitle: Hitachiin Brothers: Utter Dicks as that’s the vibe that these guys are giving off. Seriously. More than usual, anyway. My Dick intuition (heh heh) pays off as Haruhi finds out exactly how these twins think. According to twin logic, if you are not a part of their ‘us,’ then you are a ‘toy’ to play with until they are bored of you. The manga-ka even offers up a pretty little stylized freeze frame with the boys to go with their dickery. Apparently, this isn’t a new thing or something just for Haruhi. These are boys who do what they want when they want and treat everyone how they want when they want. There are no friends, only playthings that they use and discard at will. Wow. Just…wow.

The moment of utter dickery is interrupted hilariously by Nekozawa Umehito, a third year student and the president of the Black Magic Club, who uses the twins dickery to segue into a sales pitch for his club’s sale on Curse Dolls. Which is relevant. No, really. Anyway, with his evil-faced kitty hand-puppet, Nekozawa is like a beautiful and disturbing marriage of Gloom and Lamb-chop. I don’t know how else to explain this man. He even has his own creepy speech text, but the scare factor drops to zero because he also is the only character aside from the nameless fan girl horde to be graced with little hearts in his speech text. Like I said…Gloom and Lamb-chop. Tamaki, no surprise, seems to be the only Host Club member genuinely afraid of this guy and gets his own moment of ominous-face Bishie Pose before the twins scare away Nekozawa with flashlights. Yes, I’m being serious.

Tamaki, of course, has to have his dramatic moment of Traumatized Pretty Boy with a nice dose of Flashback when he remembers why he is so scared of the Emo Puppeteer. Apparently, he stepped on the guy’s hand-puppet and Neko-chan cursed him for it. …Honestly, the Crack level is off the charts, and the only thing kind of scary about this is the puppet’s name: Bereznoff. I can’t…I don’t…I have no clue how to begin to pronounce that name. I could totally ignore it too if I hadn’t heard it pronounced differently in both versions of the anime, in addition to seeing spelled at least three different ways later in the manga. Just PICK a way to spell it and let me know how to say it so I don’t stare, gape jawed and stuttering, plskthnx Hatori Bisco. Anyway…that’s not the point. Getting off track.

Turns out, Tamaki wasn’t cursed by Nekozawa, just acting dumber than usual, which Kyoya is all too glad to point out to He Who Twinkles. The twins harass his Holy Stupidity, and what follows is glorious and too hilarious to omit, so I am so going to stick it in (insert “that’s what he said” joke here):

Twins: “…be careful, for he who speaks ill of Nekozawa risks his #@$& turning into #@$&.”

Tamaki: “Haruhi! Check Dad’s #@$& PLEASE!!! I’m DOOOOMED!!!”

…I don’t even need a snark for this, or need to exaggerate it. This totally LOLs for itself.

In a a flip of the switch, the twins go from Drs. Instigator, to Messrs. Bored as Hell and Tamaki is pissed. No, really…not Kermit-Flailing, but actually angry. I didn’t think it possible for this Stay Puf’t Marshmallow Man. For once, he actually does his job as the club president and pretty much puts the sulky twins into time-out and gives them cleaning duty till the period of Official Shunning is over. Obviously, the twins don’t like this and the power of their Sulk is powerful enough to manifest as a giant “SU~LK” across the backdrop, gloomy background and all. Sulk seems to be their Kryptonite, as there is no freeze-framing and no Twincesting going on, at all. Instead, the devious bastards practice the art of pouting.

Meanwhile, Tamaki, fluent in Idiot, charms the ladies by spouting flowery stupidity out of his ass, and luckily we quickly cut away to Haruhi and her fan girls before the urge to play Slap the Idiot becomes overwhelming. Of course, since the twins are unavailable, that automatically makes them prime topic for gossip. Since they are apparently SUPER TWINS and “impossible” for anyone other than Haruhi to distinguish, that of course means discussing tactics for distinguishing them, aside from taking note of how they part their hair. No, really. That’s the best this swarm of squealing females can come up with…hair parts.

Anyway, Haruhi has a brain “stronger than the average bear,” or at least stronger than the average fan girl, but apparently Rolled very poorly for her Tact Attribute. While she hears honesty in her statement, everyone else hears a “Tactless Wonder strikes again” statement. The twins start bickering, and we discover that these kitties have claws. Not only are they masters of the art of impassive insults, but the power of their “Bitch, Please” seems to multiply with their bad attitude. Hikaru loses his cool when Kaoru implies that his twin has a bit of a crush on Haruhi, which (of course) means that King Daddy-Complex has to but in, Kermit-Flail and Dramatic Tears, and all. Renge, who must have gone to Beauxbatons because she damn near Apparated into this story, is thrilled about the Yaoi “love square” that Haruhi is tangled up in, especially since there’s a set of twins involved. Seriously, it’s things like this that make me think that Renge is a closet Hitachiin Twins fan girl. The twins are not impressed with the Otaku’s…Otaku-ing, and the power of their Bitch momentarily finds another target.

Of course, the distraction doesn’t last, and they go back to insulting each other which makes sense, until they bring physical appearance into it, which doesn’t. At all. Ever. Instead, this comes across as kind of stupid…and not just any old variety of stupid. This is TAMAKI stupid. The other Hosts seem to agree as their “WTF, SRSLY?” expressions speak volumes. Volumes, I say.

The fan girls, sadly, remain fan girl-ish, seeming to find this wonderful and thrilling beyond belief, which kind of reinforces my opinion that most of these girls have doujinshi and yaoi fantasies where there should be brains. Their moment of in-text-hearts and squealing is interrupted with a dramatic panel of the twins breaking up. I mean, they’re twins, so…that shouldn’t be possible since they can’t just NOT be twins, but…whatev. I’m going with it.

Apparently, the twins’…at least Hikaru’s…idea of breaking up is showing up to class before his brother with fucking FLAMINGO PINK hair. Seriously. Pink. Hair. Seeing how these guys appear on the back of the volume cover with strawberry blonde hair, I would like to know how Hikaru managed this without chemically frying his hair to the point of it breaking off. DIGRESSING, I AM. Anyway, even the bright pink hair does not faze Haruhi’s deadpan, and Hikaru gets his bitchy snark on toward Kaoru, which his twin happens to over-hear…which means it’s Kaoru’s turn to bring the bitch on. Unlike Mr. Blunt as Fuck, Kaoru is the Jedi Master of Passive aggressive Insults, which leads to more Reverse-harem style fighting. So…not real fighting, just…flailing and wailing, and bitching and huffing.

Unlike in round one of the Hitachiin cat-fight, this time Haruhi is dragged into it as each twin tries to play Capture the Reluctant Host, in order to have their “toy” on their “side.” The student collateral damage of the twins’ war…which is more of a prank war than anything…is massive. I’m honestly surprised that no one has thought to pull a Face-Punch on these two.

Anyway, their little scene in the cafeteria, ordering the same food at the same time and getting pissy about it, is funny in the quaint, stereotypical “Twins can read their twin’s minds” kind of way. Hani, bless him, tries to be Super Bunny by interrupting the boys with an offering of cake, but the power of his Loli-Chibi is more annoying than anything to the boys, and thus Hani’s strawberry cake of Peace Offering falls to its death. Hani despairs, and Tamaki displays about thirty seconds worth of Stern Reprimanding, before he is distracted by Haruhi like a bird is distracted by something shiny. Not trying to make any flowery literary statements there. It’s just…both are feather-brains, so I thought it appropriate.

Haruhi mentioning getting drawn into the fight when all the Glutton wants is her FOOD, DAMN IT ALL spurs the Prince of Selective Reality has a moment of Domestic Fantasy that, thankfully, Kyoya interrupts before it can take over the entire panel. Meanwhile, Haruhi has escaped to get her NOM on. The Glutton demands Sustenance, after all. The food interplay, with Haruhi having her first taste of fancy food and nearly out-sparkling the King of Sparkle, Edward Cullen Tamaki is cute, and the manga-ka manages to throw in a bit of food fetishism, with a Haruhi/Kaoru freeze frame before the twins begin round three of the cat fight. This time, with food and pointy utensils involved, SHIT HAPPENS and the Vice Principal is the one to get hit with the friendly fire (a flying fork goes ker-splash, and thus…SOUP IN THE FACE, waaaah) which is NOT A GOOD THING.  The twins have a moment of unity in blaming Tamaki, but it’s pointless, as all are forced into cleaning duty.

Dick One and Dick Two, a.k.a. Hikaru and Kaoru, have vanished…somewhere…and we finally get a bit of background about the Twincestuous pair. Apparently, even though the Twincestiness is a new “thing,” the dickery is not. These guys never fought…like, ever…and never talked to anyone, ever. The moment of profound Understanding of the Twins is interrupted by Tamaki running off to do something…Tamaki-like, and Haruhi is left to her Deep Thoughts. Haruhi, usually emotionally a dumb ass, has a moment of AHA when she figures that she needs to help her hangers-on friends make up.

We find the twins getting serious with the Hurtful Words with one another. This is not looking good, but then we have a moment of “…really…” when one of Nekozawa’s carved wooden curse dolls is brought into it. It’s being treated like Serious Business by the twins, so Haruhi steps up and cracks some sculls with her Fists of Fury. Angry Haruhi stuns the twins as she scolds them and threatens never to let them come visit her house (like they wanted to before the whole fight) if they don’t make up.

Check and Mate, Haruhi. You Lose.

Yeah. Hikaru and Kaoru are dicks. The Hell and Hassle they’ve been putting the other Hosts (and the school) through was because a) they wanted to get an invite to Haruhi’s house, and b) they were bored.

Please stand by for Emergency Shut Down and Reboot.

Haruhi’s Blue Screen extends to the entire club, and the Twins Twincestuously Freeze Frame.

Cut to: the twins getting the crap beat out of them…I wish.

(Really) Cut to: The twins playing their little “Which one is Hikaru?” game with their fan girls.

In the end, Haruhi proves insightful when she recognizes the switch the twins pulled with no problems, proving that she sees these jerks guys for who they are. It’s a profound moment for the twins who were so long removed from the world, but we are left with the feeling that it hasn’t quite sunk in for these guys yet.

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The twinnnnns.

My God, the twinnnnnns.

These guys have so, so many more issues than I can count, but I still can’t hate them. They’re naïve and selfish, but after being emotionally shut off from a world that couldn’t even recognize them for who they were, can I really blame them? Not really. Not completely, anyway. Sure, they’re young adults and should be able to deal…put their big girl panties on and move on…but they are still learning. Maturity doesn’t come overnight, especially since they’re so emotionally stunted anyway.

Hikaru and Kaoru are both two of the most interesting and two of the most frustrating characters of the series. They can be silly and stupid like Tamaki, but as sarcastic and evil as Kyoya. They aren’t idiots, but they aren’t exactly on top of things. Their moments of mischief and immaturity are strangely balanced by odd moments of friendly affection (mostly with Haruhi). Without spoiling future chapters, I will say that watching these two characters evolve emotionally throughout the series is one of the things I enjoy the most.

What Worked

Though it is initially annoying to put up with SO MANY panels of “The Twins, they are Fighting RAWR,” when I look back with the knowledge that EVERYTHING was staged, I cannot help but be impressed. Everything, every fight, every snub, every moment of vindictiveness was staged, whether according to script or ad lib, to ultimately result in them getting what they want from Haruhi. Not only that, but they managed to convince even Kyoya, who KNOWS ALL THE THINGS, that their fight was genuine. The fact that they’d do that to manipulate Haruhi…and because they were bored… shows just how disturbed and interesting these two characters are. The fact that this is the tip of the iceberg that is their Issues makes me all the more excited to read more.

Nekozawa, though his appearance was brief, is always a welcome figure in this manga. Seriously. Gloom and Lamb-chop (or, Bereznoff), Severus Snape if he was a teen with a fetish for flowery funeral décor and in-text Speech Hearts. I love. I love sooo much. The fact that his beloved wooden curse dolls play such a roll later in the story makes me giggle so much. Especially since the curse dolls are shaped like little, wooden Bereznoffs. Seriously. That’s just the cream cheese frosting on my Fluffy Pink Crack Cake. I can’t wait to see more of him.

Though it wasn’t until the very end, I liked Haruhi’s violent outburst at the twins. Normally so composed and dead-pan, the angry-faced, screaming Haruhi is both a visual shock for the readers and an in-story shock for the twins, who are on the receiving end. Though the twins are far less mature than the Female Host, she is nearly as emotionally stunted and/or wounded as they are, and does not quite know how to connect. She worried for them, and she cares about them as friends, but just as the twins treat people as toys because they do not know how else to treat them, so too does Haruhi show her concern in awkward outbursts, and little moments of personal insight. Just like the twins, Haruhi does a lot of growing up in the story and I am looking forward to re-reading her journey to adulthood. You just know that with the twins there to hassle her and the Hosts there to keep her on her toes, things will be interesting.

Corner of Fan Girl Squee

It gives me a major sad that there wasn’t a mini-episode included in this chapter, but since it was so much about the twins, and the twins and Haruhi, and all the emotional stuff, I will not complain. Really. I won’t do it. Even though I want to sooo badddd.

From Me to You

I just wanted to take the time and give my best “I’m Sorry” kitty face to all of the readers (the one, two of you out there???) for being such a slow poke with this chapter. I literally spent three days, the last of which was a 14 hour day, doing written exam work, and typing up a History paper, and all that other necessary school stuff. This was literally written in 5-6 hours total when I finally had time after all the crazy. I will keep the updates on a week-10 day schedule as much as I can, depending on testing schedules, and how far ahead I can get on my school reading/writing/etc in addition to having time to re-read the manga episodes. Please be patient with me. 🙂

Thank you, as always, for reading and I will see you for next chapter~

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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