Chaos comes in like a lion?
Chaos is an idea that is repeatedly mentioned in the second episode of Sangatu no Lion’s second season. This episode applies chaos as a concept to several different situations in ways that not only progresses the plot but also delivers some much-needed character development in the supporting cast.
The first time we see chaos in action is during Kumakura’s match against Souya. Souya’s playstyle is regarded as being simultaneously simple and complex – a fact that is proven when the audience discovers that the two men are playing seventeen moves ahead of each other. However, there is a method to the madness and illustrates just how far Rei still has to go before he can compete for the title.
Up until this point, Gotou has been a villain for villainy’s sake. He appears to have no motivation other than selfishness and a desire to win. However, episode two shows an entirely new side to him. It’s clear that he views his rivals highly and far from stringing Kyouko along, he’s tried to stop her from following him.
Previously, we’ve heard that his wife has been in the hospital for a long time, yet he still visits her and actively tries to remain faithful. While he has made mistakes in the past, it’s possible that he was the antagonist purely because Rei sees him as one, not because of his inherent personality flaws. As Rei says, people themselves embody chaos.
Even Kumakura, a character rarely seen in season one, shows two very different sides of himself. After his loss, he is very calm in front of the cameras but is later revealed to have lashed out and damaged the shogi hall.
What’s interesting is that despite this, Kumakura has already resolved to train harder and try again next year – this means that he’s mentally strong, as well as having excellent shogi skills. The series implies high-level shogi play requires good mental health, an area that Rei has only recently started to improve.
With Rei and Nikaido both enrolled in their own tournaments, it will be interesting to see if they use any of the tricks they’ve learned from watching high-level play. Nikaido, in particular, wants to face off against Rei in the finals, so he’ll be trying his hardest to succeed. That said, Rei has had a poor run in recent episodes and will have to double his efforts if he wants to win.
Although we’re onto the second season, this is only the beginning. There are many different leagues to compete in, and this episode made it abundantly clear that at the moment, Rei is unprepared for what lies ahead. Sangatsu no Lion is almost like a shōnen series in this regard: there are powerful foes ahead, and Rei needs to train hard to be the best.