Don’t Leave Me Alone, Daisy – episodes 5 to 10

August 11, 2004 on 6:37 pm | In Don't Leave Me Alone, Daisy | Comments Off on Don’t Leave Me Alone, Daisy – episodes 5 to 10

There is no way that one can take Don’t Leave Me Alone, Daisy on face value and escape with their sanity intact. Digging beneath the surface for societal woes makes the whole tawdry exercise a much easier experience because it’s hard to laugh at so many of these situations.
For each step that Hitomi and Techno take in the right direction, they follow them by falling down holes and becoming mired once more in the pits of unacceptable behaviour.

Domination is something that is received differently by different people, but most will think that forcing someone to do something against their will is not cool. So Techno putting bubbles on Hitomi’s arms and legs and then getting her to dance in the streets, drink a tropical juice with him, and then preventing her from telling the police about her predicament – a clear sign that he now knows what he’s doing is wrong – is simply not fun to watch at all, no matter what anyone tells you. Mainstream (that is, non-hentai) anime is at its worst when it’s being fetishistic and this situation, and the time when Techno actually leashed Hitomi, does not belong on television, no matter how late at night it was.

Hitomi had mostly been a character not willing to put up with Techno’s rubbish, but amazingly she starts to develop feelings for him. It’s what’s known in James Bond films as “Stockholm Syndrome”, and to some poor misguided souls as “Romantic Inevitability”. The good thing that can be said for Hitomi here is that she doesn’t like Techno for what he is. She likes him for what he could be … which leads into one of the series’ few thematic strengths.
In Siberia, Techno’s idea of a skiing date spot, the characters meet a scientist who has lived by himself in a facility for fifty years. He speaks Japanese, inexplicably (he actually does explain it, but it makes no sense – hence the comedy). He doesn’t realise that he’s fifty five years old, and still thinks of himself as having that five year old body. Here Hitomi can see the long term effects of isolation, and Techno is infuriated and can’t quite place his finger on why.
The exact lesson learned is that it would not benefit Techno to be sent back to his shelter, because otherwise he’ll stay seriously messed up and get even worse. To become worse than Techno already is doesn’t bear imagining – he’s really a moron.

The only time Techno seems sympathetic at all is when he travels back to 1985 and meets his five year old self. For once he acknowledges the sadness of his existence, even yelling truths at his childish apparition. It’s really sad that Techno’s grandfather wants so much for Techno to be a good part of society, but did so poorly at it. Locking a child away doesn’t let them learn and grow socially, and therefore solves nothing.

Basically, Don’t Leave Me Alone, Daisy survives on its merits as a look at the sort of society that can produce freakish offshoots like Techno and meek, half submissive women like Hitomi and her unsupportive friends. It turns out to be a great examination of loneliness, but for once it could be a bit more preachy – because Techno can’t see the consequences of his actions. He’s going to end up with Hitomi, that’s probably for sure: but without being able to see his mistakes, will he really have learned? Will he not repeat the past, will he change at all, if he can’t accept the truth of life?
In the last two episodes, Techno had better at least begin to become human, or this series will really have been quite infuriating. Although, of course, Yamakawa X is still gold.

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