MPD-Psycho vol. 10 – Eiji Otsuka

5 out of 5

Perhaps the only real “good” thing about Dark Horse going on hold with publishing English editions of MPD-Psycho – presumably to assess profitability – is that it will give me ample time to read and re-read the series, reveling in how much of it’s Byzantine plotting has been lurking at the fringes since the get-go, and maybe even given enough years, get minisculely competent at Japanese such that I can struggle through additional volumes. Because I have to know where this is going.

My sole criticism of volume 10 is that of the techno-babble variety: that you can just mention a random database (like, no context as to where it’s located and etc.), and suddenly figure out how to have access to it. But that’s fine, it’s s super shorthand way for Eiji Otsuka to advance his story, which becomes absolutely killer here. Reflecting what I’d stated above: after alternately grousing about and praising the way MPD story reveals come in fits and starts, the way Onihigata and others lay plain what’s what herein blows the impact of Psycho up way beyond Otsuka’s commentaries on violence and voyeurism, and expands it more clearly to the political realm. It shouldn’t have been unexpected, I suppose (again, the pieces have been there, I’d say), but it was still eye-opening – no pun intended – to have it explained, and it gives a lot of our current focused-on cast – Sasayam, Kitou – a definitive sense of trajectory.

This is alongside making Tetora Nishizono into a more fascinating and fleshed out character, no longer just an upstart troublemaker, and similarly taking Machi Isono into unforeseen directions. Sho-U Tiajima kills it all the way through, jumping from large scale catastrophes to more comedic beats and intense dialogue without blinking.