Once upon a time and by time I mean a couple of weeks ago, MAL informed me that Jigoku Shoujo was coming out with its fourth season. I immediately added it to my ‘Plan to Watch’ list, but before that I only had one thought in my head.
Let me start by saying that I absolutely love Jikogu Shoujo/Hell Girl. The premise, while repetitive at times, is right up my alley. You take ordinary people who are feeling stuck with their hate, anger and despair and instead of dealing with it in a rational way, they decide to go the easy route and call up Enma Ai.
While one may say, “Why would people do that?” I would counter with, “Why wouldn’t people do that?” I mean, as humans we are always looking for the easy way out. Just look at all of the fad diets out there and the many people who fall for them, hoping that it will be a quick weight loss miracle. It isn’t though. And even if it was, then it wouldn’t be healthy. For most people, losing weight takes time, effort and hard work. Just like everything else in life.
The idea that people could call up Hell Girl to solve their problems, even though it means that you’ll face torment in the next life is a fantastic idea and one that I absolutely adore. If that’s not enough, Jigoku Shoujo is one of the few animes that takes what is already a great idea and turns it into something wonderful in its second season.
So a fourth season should make me happy, because I clearly love the series, and while it does…in a way, it also makes me nervous, worried, hesitant, and cautious about it. Why? It’s pretty much because of the third season.
After the epic finale of season two, Enma Ai and her group have come back to do what they do best, sending people to Hell. The stories were still fine in terms of the psychological side and for the most part, I did enjoy them. I especially liked the story where the kid called Enma Ai to kill his unborn sibling, so his step mom can love him again. It was tragic, it was depressing, but that’s what Hell Girl is like sometimes. And I love it!
But throughout the series we were introduced to Yuzuki who seems like she’s against what Hell Girl does, but really doesn’t do anything about it. Yuzuki is possessed by Ai and does nothing about it. She’s just there, watching everything happen and never really showing much emotion about it. Even when her friend dies, she still doesn’t do much. Thankfully, the ending (by that I mean the last 6 or 7 episodes) saved the show and showcased why Ai possessed Yuzuki and displayed Yuzuki’s sad backstory.
Season three of Jigoku Shoujo isn’t the worst anime out there, but compared to the first two seasons it was a disappointment. I almost felt like if it was 12 episodes instead of 26, then it would have been better. The story would be more focused, Yuzuki wouldn’t seem so apathetic to everything, and the twist would stand out more. Unfortunately, it was 26 episodes and even though I do enjoy seeing why people send others to Hell, it got tiring after awhile. I hate to say this, but it was too much.
Which brings us to season four of Jigoku Shoujo that will begin airing in July…if this came after the second season I would be hyped right now, but since it’s after the third I’m worried. It seems like it will only have 12 episodes, and for that I am grateful, but I don’t know…I’m really nervous about this upcoming season.
And yet, I’m also excited and looking forward to this. It’s a weird feeling to have, because it’s so conflicting. I mean, check out the PV.
The animation looks amazing, Enma Ai seems just as lovely as before, and it’s Hell Girl…and I love Hell Girl.
Hopefully the fourth season is good and not disappointing. Maybe my low (but not really) expectations will help me like this more. I don’t know. I guess I’ll have to wait and see. Till then, I’m remain optimistically nervous about what Jogoku Shoujo has in store for us.