Date A Live: Into the Date-A-Verse.
Overview (Spoilers Below!)
Shido wakes up to a peaceful morning and a Kotori who doesn’t remember the battle from the day before. Meeting up with the other Spirits on the way to school, Shido infers that this timeline is different in a multitude of ways. At school, Shido waits for Origami’s name in roll call, but it never comes. He figures that she must have happily moved to a different city with her parents. Shido cries, though, that he never got to see her smile.
At home, Shido seems distracted while cooking dinner, and Natsumi thinks it must be because of a girl. She, Kotori, and Yoshino surprise him with skimpy outfits, but Shido admits that he’s worried about Origami. Kotori only knows Origami as a member of AST; Shido can’t comprehend why she would join if her parents are still alive. Kotori also alludes to an inverse Spirit by the name of Devil—her picture looks exactly like Origami.
The next morning at school, Origami transfers to Shido’s class. After calling Kotori in a panic, he resolves to ask Origami his questions directly. Meeting on the roof, Origami reveals that Shido looks just like a boy who saved her life five years ago—it was Shido himself, but Origami believes it was Shido’s brother, who died right in front of her eyes. Instead of fighting Spirits to avenge her parents, she joined AST to get justice for Shido. And although he successfully saved her parents, they died in a car crash one year later. Origami won’t admit to being Devil, though.
She heads inside when the bell rings, but Shido asks her out on a date to talk things over more. Origami says she’ll think about it and leaves him a note with a time and place. Clutching that letter, Shido falls asleep on the roof, only waking when Kurumi speaks to him. She transforms, explaining that she can use Yud on Origami to find out what’s going on.
Inside the school, Origami is looking for a lost hair clip when she spies Shido chatting with a Spirit through a door. Origami heads out onto the roof, and her eyes glaze over; she transforms into Devil and uses her angel Satan to brutally attack Kurumi. After Kurumi sinks through the floor, Origami comes to, utterly ignorant about what has just occurred.
This episode delivers on exciting twists and turns and revelations, but a lot of things about it don’t make sense. I’m not sure why Shido wakes up to pleasant weather and thinks, “Does this mean I’ve managed to make the world a peaceful place?” Don’t give yourself quite so much credit just yet, Shido. I’m sure plenty of bad things are still happening out there in the world even though the sun is shining. I’m not sure why Shido fell asleep on the roof, or why Origami just happened to transfer his class on the most plot-significant day possible. I mean, that’s way too much of a coincidence to be believable, right?
I’m also annoyed that the opening scene sets up a cool twist that never came to be. From the moment we first see Kotori, we can instantly tell she’s different. Her voice is high-pitched, breathy, and docile. She wears a cute sailor uniform and leaps into Shido’s arms for protection. I thought this was supposed to indicate that she’s completely different in this timeline—I mean, even her little gasps of breath are girlier. If she really were supposed to be a different Kotori, it would be an incredibly well-done sequence. And yet… when she’s chatting with Yoshino and Natsumi later, Kotori is back to her usual tsundere self—same outfit, same voice, same mannerisms. I’m bummed that what was broadcasted as such a wild twist was just… an OOC moment for a major character, I guess.
It’s cool that this world has a whole different history, but they just don’t do anything interesting with that concept. It’s pretty disappointing because the whole multiverse concept is super intriguing—and it’s an even bigger bummer that so much airtime is wasted on the dumb-as-hell fanservice scene where the girls try to distract Shido from his girl trouble by… giving him more girls to worry about. It makes literally no sense—if he has a crush on a girl and it’s freaking him out, why would he feel better after seeing a bunch of other girls in bathing suits? Ah well. It’s not like fanservice usually has any rhyme or reason to it, but it’s frustrating that such a cool premise was ruined by a shitty fanservice scene.
The dialogue in this episode is pretty funny, though. Tonomachi introduces himself in roll call with the bombastic, “YO, Hirito Tonomachi is present and accounted for and ready to face the day,” to which Okamine-sensei replies, “Right, so Tonomachi is very much present.” Nick Haley’s line delivery here is just perfect. And when Shido freaks out at Origami’s absence, his teacher deadpans, “What’s wrong? Did I say something weird or are you just having a moment?” And it’s pretty funny that, after practically forcing Kotori and Yoshino into bathing suits, Natsumi says she decided not to wear one because “I was afraid I might feel stupid, you know!” Plus, it’s nice to see Natsumi being cute and playful for a change instead of wildly oversexed. Maybe she’s finally learning that she doesn’t need to look twice her age to get Shido’s attention.
The main twist here—that even after Origami’s parents survived, she joined the AST to avenge Shido—is appropriately moving. It gave me the chills. Hideki Shirane’s soundtrack underscores the moment with appropriate gravitas, and I can feel Shido’s horror at the revelation. But after that, the scene is a little boring. Shido and Origami take a long time to get to the point in their conversation, and although Kurumi’s transformation is cool as hell, Origami’s hair clip debacle feels a little forced.
In general, the plot behind this episode is very solid. Annoying execution issues prevent it from being truly excellent, but I’m giving “Another World, Another Girl” a high score anyway because I simply can’t wait to see what happens next.