I decided to save this question to the last, because to explain and answer properly, this post needs actual proofs from the beginning of the manga until now. advertence1: if you are an anime watcher, be aware this post is full of spoilers. Read it at your own risk. advertence2: excuse my grammar, english is not my first language. advertence3: high Rizumo content.
I wrote this based off of robosexualscum’s headcanon and it’s probably not as good as I’d hope. I’m more comfortable writing Rin than I am as Suguro or Yukio, but I tried.
Also, I was listening to the piano excerpt of “End of the Line” from Captain America: The Winter Soldier when I first read the headcanon and that’s why it has that title. I was going to make a reference to that line in the fic, but I held back on it.
Here’s to hoping that I served this headcanon justice!
Today, Porter Robinson released the animated music video for his and Madeon’s song “Shelter” that he wrote and worked on with A-1 Studios. I won’t go too far into it, because you can watch the video and do some research for yourself, but this video truly toyed with my emotions and struck me in a way that typical music videos never do.
The concept can simply be summed up as a girl named Rin who is trapped in a simulation her father, Shigeru, lovingly designed for her to live in upon the real world around them ending. Now, this idea can be debated so deeply because of the challenge between what science is capable of and what is morally correct to do, especially in a situation involving inevitable human extinction and the potential power to protect your loved ones.
There’s never a perfect compromise between the two of them, and this video has already challenged people in taking a stance on what they believe in. It also makes you wonder what his mental process was in engineering the simulator; asking yourself questions such as how long he had to design it, if there was testing involved, what he prioritized in the design process, and what measures he took to ensure the safety of his daughter. It makes you wonder if he considered putting himself in the simulator to prevent her loneliness, or if he selflessly designed this machine only for her to live in.
Beyond that, you wonder if this idea was truly the best. Later in the video, Rin has simulated her happy childhood memories all the way up to her being placed into the machine by her father. You begin to think if Shigeru’s plan for his daughter is morally okay. Is Rin truly safe in a never-ending simulation where she is constantly fighting the negative feelings loneliness cause? Will her comatose body stay physically alive forever so she can continue to simulate a virtual world for herself? Will she be able to develop normally as a human being living this life?
As much as I desire an extension of this animation to answer my questions, I know that a project of that scale is difficult and takes time. This six minute video alone took a year to roll out, so I can’t imagine how much more time would be needed for a fuller project.
Despite that, I’m okay with the many open ends that come with this project. It leaves tons of room for imagination and debate, which is a very rare find in music videos today.
The Sight: Rin's Power and the Context of the Two Major Scenes
I have a lot of complicated feelings on the “sight” shot in Episode 10, primarily the way some RH fans have been taking it…
For the sake of this analysis, the “sight” scene will cover the scenes where the “show the sight” concept is referenced, not the scenes where characters actually see the sight. Just to clarify.
A crucial thing to remember about Rin is his power is to unite and to give others drive. He brings people together with his energy and his pushy, demanding nature instills a drive in others that they might not have even realized was there. This is a huge piece of High Speed and how he affects the lives of Haruka, Makoto and Nagisa. And at the heart of Rin’s power is the relay.
The relay is about the *team*. And the “sight” is about what happens when a *team* swims together, what can they show each other, what can they realize. As Rin says in High Speed, “it’s something we can only see if we’re all together.” Rin teaches others the “sight” exists if they seek to find it. But they need to be united around a concept greater than winning, the concept of *nakama*. This is why it’s so important that he teaches it to Haruka, someone who has always used the water as his escape/refuge, who didn’t associate the water with others, who saw the water as a place where he could be alone and he was just fine with that. Rin taught Haruka that swimming can mean so much more than just “feeling the water,” that it was a way to truly share yourself with your team, to be one. And Haruka fell in love with that idea, with the relay. So that it now means as much to him as it does to Rin.
In S1, Rin turns on his power, believing that it holds him back, that he can’t get better as long as his strength lies in the feelings of others. He rejects it, directing all his frustration on the person who surpasses him, the person who seems to do just fine without nakama. Haruka. If he can defeat this person who epitomizes the lack of need for nakama, he can finally break the chain. He can be free. And he can surpass his limits again. Obviously, there was more to his issues with Haruka, but we’re focusing on the relay and Rin’s power for this essay. And this struggle was definitely a key piece of their conflict. Remember, Rin didn’t realize his relay had affected Haruka and that Haruka was thriving through nakama until later.
Slowly, it dawns on Rin that he’s been denying the one thing that’s always given him his true strength. He remembers the joy he felt swimming with his friends, with Haruka, and realizes that the only way to recover his power is through the relay.If he can once again grasp what used to come so easily to him, maybe he can find that strength again. And we all know what happens to him once he feels that chance at salvation has been stripped away. It shatters him. What’s the point of swimming? His power is gone.
Cue the Episode 12 scene tree scene. Haruka reveals that yes he understands what Rin had been trying to show them back then. That it completely mattered and changed Haruka’s life. And then, the same power that Rin has shared with Haruka and others, with Haruka particularly to change the way he swims, Haruka offers to give back. Rin showed him the “sight” once so now he must remind Rin what he saw, remind him of how Rin can use his power.
The exchange here is key because it’s Haruka returning Rin’s power, while now knowing he holds a piece of it inside himself. Rin changed Haruka’s life so he’s going to try to change Rin’s, before it’s too late.It isn’t the “sight” itself that is theirs. It’s the transfer, the exchange. It’s Haruka being able to give something back to Rin, something that Rin had believed gone for good. Because Rin had given Haruka something he never had believed in. “It’s my turn to show you” is the key phrase here. Again, it’s not the “sight” itself. Because the “sight” is about the team. It’s about everyone working together. It’s about Makoto and Nagisa as much as it is about Haruka. What’s special about its mention here is the *transfer*, the *return* of power. That’s what makes the Episode 12 Haruka/Rin scene special. And yeah, there’s the whole sakura thing since sakura belongs to the trio and to Rin and Haruka specifically since Haruka keeps sakura things (like his teacups) to remind him of Rin.
Moving onto Season 2, Rin spends most of the season *wanting* to show people the “sight.” He wants them to understand why nakama is so precious to him. His power has been fully restored, he’s whole again and can swim with the passion he once had, and now he wants to share that power. Which Sousuke inadvertently reminds him through their race and Sousuke’s wish to relay with him. This is when he decides to form *his* relay team. Not just any relay team. But a team that will truly unite with him and be able to see the “sight.” A team that understands how precious swimming with friends is. This is his goal. To take that team to victory, yes, but more importantly, to become one with with that team. His ultimate team.
Obviously, Sousuke is the outlier since, like Haruka once did, he doesn’t understand why friendship matters in swimming. And his pain further clouds his vision. As does his frustration. Why can’t he see what Rin can see? He understands the nature of Rin’s power now, but he can’t reach it. Because he’s ONLY focusing on Rin. And the relay is about the *team.* Only when Sousuke starts connecting with the others, seeing how much swimming with Rin and each other means to them, does Sousuke finally start to accept what he felt that day watching Rin with Iwatobi. Because nakama is about more than just one person. Yes, Sousuke’s dream is to swim with Rin, but it’s also to see what Rin sees. To touch that power that Rin had somehow restored in his Episode 12 relay race. I think this is part of what “with you” means when Sousuke says he wants to swim as Rin’s friend. To wholly embrace what Rin sees. To be one.
Because of Sousuke’s physical state, Rin wants to, wisely, deny him, because he can’t let Sousuke destroy himself, he can’t. Even if it’s for the sake of the “sight.” And I think for a moment, Rin doubts his power here because logic says that it can’t save Sousuke. Rin is trapped since his power is all he can truly offer. And Sousuke keeps demanding it, begging for it. But Rin can’t risk it. Only through the faith of Nitori and Momo does Rin begin to believe that maybe his power can do the extraordinary things the others say. Nitori speaks of how the Episode 12 relay changed him, how it bought him here, past his limits. And Momo speaks with the brash optimism of youth, much like a young ever-confident Rin (seriously, I’m 100% that arms behind his back pose was a deliberate reference to how RinRin talks about the “sight”). So Rin agrees to also put his faith in his power. Maybe somehow it can save Sousuke, in a way, even if it means Sousuke will only be able to see the “sight” once. That’s worth it to Sousuke.
Cue this version of the “sight” scene. Yes, it references Episode 12. But this is different. This is not an exchange. Nor is it the offer of High Speed. It’s a request. “Show us,” Samezuka says. Rin has his power now, he his strength, even if he’s doubting its full potential in face of Sousuke’s condition. This is Samezuka bolstering Rin’s faith. Like a power-up almost. Whereas Haruka was literally giving the power back, as I mentioned earlier. The significance in each is entirely different.
The Sameuzka scene is a culmination of how Rin’s leadership and power have merged throughout the season to create his ultimate team. To bring nakama to Samezuka. After an entire previous season of Rin only seeing Samezuka as a means to an end, a means to reach Haruka. Now, Samezuka and Rin are fully embracing each other. This scene is *not* about just Rin and Sousuke. This scene is about *Samezuka.* Whereas yes, the Haruka and Rin scene is about Haruka and Rin because it’s a culmination of them realizing how they’ve changed each other.
I’m not going to guess as to the symbolism of the leaves because it could probably be ANYTHING. Is it meant to call back to the Rin/Haruka scene? Of course. But it’s not replicating, as some fans worry about. It’s showing the advancement of Rin’s power, that he can take it beyond the past, beyond Iwatobi. Again, the “sight” is to be shared. The circumstances behind how the “sight” is offered change the context. Rin and Haruka have their context: exchange and return. Samezuka has its context: faith.
I hope this settles some of the feelings fans have about this scene so they can appreciate it for what it says about Rin and Rin’s growth, rather than fretting that it makes the Rin and Haruka scene less special. It does not. They’re two very different contexts that simply share the same power as a subject.
Also, I apologize for making Rin sound like a magical girl, but it’s impossible to explain the way Rin does this in any other way. orz
Do u have any head cannons on wat the couple do when either if then r sick?
Oh man it’s just motherhenning and worrying all around.
Makoto just worries constantly when Haru’s sick, always checking up on Haru and burying him in a pile of tissues and blankets. “Are you cold, Haru? Haru, did drink enough water? Haru, don’t stay in the bath too long, you’re already sick!” He probably tried to make porridge once, but that ended in disaster (his mom helps him do it instead). Haru just lets him fuss because it puts Makoto more at ease if he feels useful. When Makoto’s sick, he probably just stays at home and his mother (and probably the twins) does most of the care, but Haru will make multiple visits to check on him. Though, when they live in Tokyo, Haru probably just cares for Makoto quietly, making sure he’s comfortable and checking on him regularly if he has a fever and making him take his medicine on time. He shows that he’s worried more through his actions than through words. Also, Makoto doesn’t seem like the kind of guy to get sick often, so when he does, it’s just a fuss all around lmao.
Both Rin and Sousuke are giant worrywarts when the other is sick, especially since neither of them get sick very often. Sousuke probably just wants to sleep while Rin’s fussing so it usually ends up with Sousuke trapping Rin in bed and telling him to shut up while Rin protests and struggles, “DON’T GET ME SICK, TOO, YOU IDIOT.” When Rin’s sick, Sousuke, being the low key drama queen he is, just blows it way out of proportion and prepares for every possible situation because he’s technical about everything like that. “It’s the FLU, Sousuke, not the plague.” Oh, also coerced spoon feeding soup/porridge in both directions because yes good blackmail material.