EPISODE 23: PARADISE
Hmm... I do this one out of order in the interest of completing an episode summary that I won't have to do later. This will be a short one, as this episode focused almost primarily on Wolfwood. Only the Vash scenes will be analyzed.
The first scene with Vash in it are flashbacks to the episode before this one to the fight between Wolfwood and Vash. It was a violent fight, so I can justify showing those again ^_^ Next, there's a brief scene where Wolfwood walks through the town square to confront a pondering Vash about the fight they had in the last episode. However, Vash looks at Wolfwood mournfully and Wolfwood continues walking, thus no words are spoken. Next, there's a scene of Vash angsting about Wolfwood and killing people while he's in bed trying to fall asleep for the night. Next is the major Vash scene for the episode. When Wolfwood finally gets the nerve to confront Vash about the fight they had, he breaks out his gun and wants to finish what they started in that sharpshooting competition way back when (basically because he was stalking Vash for Knives from the beginning and had finally gotten orders to kill him). Vash obliges, but only under the condition that Wolfwood doesn't kill anyone else after him. Wolfwood drops his guard a little and asks Vash what he intends to do once he finds Knives. Vash replies that Knives had taken someone from him long ago. Wolfwood guesses that Vash wants revenge, but Vash says he doesn't know. Apparently it all comes together for Wolfwood about how Vash chooses to live and he drops guard completely. However, this little mushy conversation was interrupted by Caine the Longshot sniping them from the desert. Both duck into a bar, where Wolfwood tells Vash to go after Caine while he stayed in town and took care of the other Gung-Ho Gun (Chapel the Evergreen). Wolfwood then asks Vash his real surname. Vash declines to tell him on the basis that he intends to go out and die, but Wolfwood urges him on. Vash says that between the two of them, his name's irrelevent. Wolfwood smiles and is satisfied, and the two set off to their tasks. The next scene is Vash driving out in the desert looking for Caine while driving, and he experiences a narrow miss as one of Caine's shots hits the hood of his car. Vash then gets an idea. The next scene is Caine's gun exploding after Caine realizes that Vash is NOT in the car that he has in his sites, but standing right behind him. Vash reasons with Caine that since he has no gun, he should go home. Caine sadly pulls out a pistol, and despite Vash's protests, shoots himself in the head. The next scene is again with Wolfwood, and Vash talks with Wolf about how he failed again. Wolfwood tries to cheer him up and tells him that humans aren't perfect, then wanders away. Vash dotes on the word Human for a few seconds before realizing that Wolfwood is leaving a trail of blood behind him on his way to a church. The last scene is Milly and Meryl bawling in each others arms inside over Wolf's death, and it pulls back to the outside, where Vash is leaning against a wall and we're unable to see his face.
Despite the fact that's a really long-winded summary, there's very little worth analyzing. Vash, when confronted by a Wolfwood who's come forward with guns blazing to settle their arguement, still doesn't want to fight. Despite the fact that this man killed someone right in front of his eyes, a LITTLE KID, something that goes against everything that he stands for, Vash still finds it in his heart to forgive Wolfwood. I found that very touching ^_^ Vash agrees to let Wolfwood kill him, but his only condition is that Wolfwood never takes another life after Vash's. That too says something about him. Even after his own death, after he's powerless, Vash wants his legacy to live on. I suppose everyone does. The thing about him asking Wolfwood though is that he knew that if Wolfwood was really going to go through with killing him, Vash knew that he would stick by his condition. That's what I think, anyway. Another thing I'd like to bring up is that even though Vash has spent countless years of his life searching for Knives, looking for vengence for Rem's death, trying to fulfill the words "Take Care of Knives," Vash doesn't know what he's going to do when he finds Knives. He knows he wants revenge, but he also knows he doesn't want to kill anyone, let alone his own brother. The conflict created by revenge verses morals is something that I think is probably going on the whole series, although I think revenge was winning before Vash got close to finding him and realized he would be taking his own brother's life. Wolfwood and Vash also make up remarkably quickly under stress. I thought that was very sweet too. I'd say they were setting aside their differences, but really the only difference is that Wolfwood believes in taking lives, and I think at that point Wolfwood had realized that taking life really wasn't necessary, so then they had no differences and were friends again. Vash found Caine the Longshot by the reports from his rifle. He was in the middle of a friggin' DESERT and he found him based on the reports of his rifle and the direction the bullets were coming from. He's a genius, as I've mentioned before, but I found that to be equally as awe-inspiring as counting bullets and the like. When Caine committed suicide in front of Vash, that really screwed with Vash's head, too. Enough so that he believed he couldn't save another life. When he had that talk with Wolfwood, I don't know if Wolfwood eased any of his fears or not. Vash looked upon Caine's suicide as a mistake on his part, and he took it hard because of the loss of life. Wolfwood tried to console him with the fact that humans make mistakes. Vash seemed to ponder the human part long and hard, probably setting himself away from humans for a minute to try and see if the mistake was still justifiable in Wolfwood's perspective. That's just speculation, though. When he looked up, he realized Wolfwood was leaving a trail of blood behind him and he had been too distracted to realize that Nicholas was mortally wounded. Then he didn't cry over Nicholas D. Wolfwood's death with Milly and Meryl. That didn't hit until the next episode. The silence he exhibited was really quite an effective way to end the show.
Like I said, not a Vash episode, but there's still a little bit. Watch this one though, I cried when Wolfwood was talking aloud in the church. That was one of the saddest anime scenes I've ever seen ;_; Probably one of my more favored episodes in the series.