The match to end the Jet Black Wedding Feast begins!
After a couple of chapters building up to this finally, the final showdown in the Jet Black Wedding Feast is here. The game is “shiratori delete” and the match begins in earnest with an unusual strategy by Medaka. Despite the series being 17 chapters into its latest arc, this is in fact the first time we see Medaka in battle in her reborn self. The rule she imposed on the match is put into effect and, as it stands, I’m unable to pick up on the reasoning behind her coming and going into the room during the match. More on that later.
In the meantime, the rest of the cast give ideas on how Medaka can go about winning this match with various strategies, and though unhelpful for her, they provide a greater sense of depth to the game for audiences. It’s already quite apparent that this isn’t such a simple game, especially with a language that most of us aren’t so familiar with.
As stated earlier, though, Medaka employs an unusual strategy that has the entire cast flabbergasted as to what is on her mind. This provokes Momozono into revoking her previous claim of turning the final match into a free for all by forming an alliance with the remaining two suitors. We also see that the rest of the student council are as oblivious as the wedding suitors in what her aim is to the point that they question Medaka’s actions. Unlike previous moments in the series, this type of fight that Medaka is fighting is completely different and foreign to readers. Usually she is the head strong type that just plows on through, but this appears to be a more cerebral fight with careful planning by Medaka to trap Momozono and the other two suitors.
The real surprise of this chapter, though, is the debut of the Kurokami family head himself, Kurokami Kajiki. The addition of his character and his declaration that the other father (Tsurubami) not existing is an interesting one to take in. His statement could be taken in any number of ways, but what matters is that the next chapter will focus in on the meaning of it, the background of Tsurubami and his relationship to Medaka.
And with chapter 157 we finally get to learn just what the whole relationship between Medaka and Tsurubami was and why it was that way. The question is brought up by the headmaster and fully explained by Momozono herself who decides to act out on her assumption of just what Medaka is aiming for in her strategy for Shiratori Delete. It’s revealed that it wasn’t originally that Medaka saw him as a father, but that Tsurubami himself saw Medaka as a daughter. The entire first half of this chapter is just dialogue-heavy in the revelation of not just Tsurubami, but how his “death” is tied into the events of this current wedding. Though I say death, the chapter hints that many of the actions that have formed this current Jet Black Wedding Feast came after his death by him. What’s fun about this confusing aspect of the chapter is that the series takes time to poke some fun at itself with both Kumagawa and Anshin’in—both able to resurrect the dead—questioning how a supposedly dead man can come back to life and act on his own accord.
There is just a lot to take in for chapter 157, especially with Kurokami Kajiki explaining just how the three siblings are related. Though the three share a common father, the siblings each have different mothers stemming from women belonging to each of the branch families, which the current Jet Black Wedding Feast suitors hail from as well. Though this form of family building within the Kurokami group may come off as incestuous to most, I took this all in as the Kurokami family being akin to a royal family and with seven branch families for such a huge family Kurokami, and the others would be distant cousins rather than immediate family so nothing struck out as odd for me. Though this type of family relation did explain the relationship between Tsurubami and Medaka seeing as Medaka’s mother was in fact Tsurubami’s older sister, winning the right to marry her it would have essentially been him marrying his niece. It’s a shock, but it explains quite a bit.
The rest of the chapter is all action with the Shiratori Delete match featuring a fun two-page spread of the two remaining contestants going back and forth. It’s not your typical action in a shounen manga, but the amount of text boxes containing the words in their game add a sense of intensity as it gives audiences a clear look at how many syllables are being deleted and just how few will remain from now on. Momozono does feel as if she’s got the upper hand after she conceitedly states she disrupted Medaka’s plan, but Medaka is unfazed as she reveals that Momozono was completely off the mark. The next chapter will definitely bring a close this showdown, but just how will the Ge’hyoukai react to what is most assuredly a victory by Medaka?
GO Rating (both chapters): 3.5/5
Just what is Medaka’s plan?