C came very close to salvaging all of the pitfalls and banal plot developments that had transpired over the past few episodes. All of that nonsense about everything coming down to a dude wanting to save his sister being pissed at a dude that wants to save his daughter that will never be born when far greater issues are taking place in the background? All of that was (mostly) forgiven as the credits started to roll.
It was kinda like Angel Beats. We had a satisfactory ending that made sense given all the shit we’d seen. Then things started back up after the credit roll and fucked everything up.
I could buy the reason for the Financial District’s existence. The powers that be literally descended and told us “All of this was set up so you pathetic mortals can duke it out and save the world in the manner you see fit.” Give people the power to change the world and let them see what they do with that power– it’s pretty much the same set up as Eden of the East, except we don’t find out until the final obligatory infodump.
That explanation makes perfect sense to me. Everyone was fighting to improve their future, and in turn it seems that these powers that be intended that personal betterment to act as a catalyst for change in the real world– hopefully for the better. Something like that. It makes all of the selfish, banal reasons for the the two main characters to have their little slapfight seem a lot more reasonable as far as the plot goes. These two guys are doing what they do for other people. They aren’t in the game for personal gain or worldly power or whatever, in the end they just wanna make life better for someone they give a damn about. And in turn maybe that altruism might do some good in the world. That’s what the powers that be seemed to want to see if we buy into their little spiel at the end.
So when the main dude goes and rewinds everything it seemed like his “why have a future when it’s probably a terrible one” ideal was playing out. Something was gonna get wiped from this existence. Maybe Japan as a whole was gonna disappear, since the only way to “better the future” in his view is to ensure there is no future. Or maybe not something so drastic. Major changes go down. The world he returns to is nearly unrecognizable or something like that.
Basically, everything that went down in those last few minutes before the end credits told me that the only way the future could be “bought back” was to change it entirely. But what do we get?
A complete refund.
The main dude comes back. Things that had disappeared are back. His professor has his family back. His gal buddy from college is back to work at her elementary school. As far as we can tell, not a damn thing has changed. It’s as if nothing in the series had transpired. Everyone’s happy again. The Financial District is and always will be there.
They may as well have said “it was all just a dream.”
I could go off on a conspiratorial rant here. Maybe this is all some sort of virtual world like The Matrix, and the “futures” that are collected in the Financial District are harvested by the powers that be, and when things need a hard reboot (Like when some pesky “program” messes everything up.), they just bring everything back to where it was before. So yeah, it could be read as some sort of whacked out Matrix/Tron/Big O virtual world (Spoiler Alert) and that the ending is just the computer/system/world being rebooted back to its previous settings so the fuel/futures can be cannibalized again.
I could go off in that direction, but I don’t give a damn enough to do that. So ignore that previous paragraph. I never wrote it.
But yeah, am I supposed to feel dread at the prospect of being incapable of escaping from the system that is the Financial District? When Johnny Depp looks at the screen and tells us that the District is eternal, is that supposed to be some sort of Twilight Zone-like twist? Should I be doing a little dance with M Nyght and some effeminate Grays?
Or maybe I’m supposed to feel this tediousness. Maybe they’re trying to tell us that the whole financial system is tedious and cannibalistic, like that Ouroboros thingie going on over in Tiger and Bunny. Feeds on itself and then spits itself up when it wants to chow down again. Capitalism is just an endless cycle blahblahblah. Maybe this malaise I’m feeling after finishing the series is deliberate.
PS: That final Pokemonball Z lightsaber fight was awesome.