ISLAND – The End [Let’s Take A Moment]

Yes, let’s. There are an awful lot of complains about this little anime. Some I agree with and some I absolutely don’t. Sure there might be some issues with the storytelling, I can understand that some would argue that. And maybe the story itself is a bit messy but whatever, I can’t see an issue really because… You know what, screw this; here’s what I think about ISLAND!

This is one huge SPOILER ALERT!!!

I’m not gonna make any deep analysis; I sees as I hear it. I liked ISLAND. A lot. So much that I binged the first ten episodes after I curiously had read Cactus Matt’s post about episode ten, where in Satsuna and Rinne, the two main characters, had sex. Yup, you read me right, I started to watch an anime I didn’t have a clue existed because the perverted me wanted to see an obscure, shitty sex scene out of curiosity even though I knew exactly how it would look, courtesy of Matt, who had done his utmost to screen shot said scene. I am perverse that way, or maybe I just wanted to know what the fuss was about. The loudmouths were extremely loud about that particular scene.

Behold Cactus Matt’s mad skills in taking screen shots

Let’s back up a bit though; ISLAND for those of you who don’t know is an anime about a young man who is flushed up on a strange island in the middle of nowhere (although there is a perfectly fine ferry taking folks to and from the mainland in no time but let’s forget about that). On this island lives three families who rule the world.. sorry the island. Some mysterious illness has cursed it’s inhabitants and some just goes poff if they go out into the sun. This is all blamed on an ancient myth where a brother and sister; Setsuna and Rinne, became lovers and had intercourse. Yeah, loudmouths scream out loud. Incest ahoy! Anyway, Satsuna and Rinne meet and Rinne is convinced that Satsuna is her destined lover. All according to the myth.

And, back up again. Think about it; she is very desperate to believe that Satsuna is her lover because, why? Fuck knows (okey, the myth perhaps) but she is very annoying with this whole thing. Can I now tell you that I don’t care for her at all during these 12 episodes? I don’t root for her one second and I wish every moment that she won’t end up with Satsuna. I know this whole idea is that she should but something is off with Satsuna the minute he is thrown up on that beach. You’ll see…

I actually think he is kind of cute.

Satsuna comes from the future. Or maybe not. The confusion is total with this one. Apparently you can only go forwards and not backwards so he’s from the behind, sorry past, but still he’s there to save the day. Maybe. He can’t really remember. But somehow he might remember Rinne. At least she makes sure he does. You see, she confuses him with another Satsuna, her former secret lover, who in reality is her step brother (which I am a bit unsure if she knew about or not because of reasons I might explain later on). When she realises he is not she decides that this [our] Satsuna is her Satsuna anyway. I did mention confusion. Don’t blame me if you are confused, it is not easy to explain this in a few short words, you should just watch the anime. It is good, annoying Rinne or not.

Well, stuff happens, there is a cute assassin who has as a goal to kill Satsuna. Sara, she is my spirit animal. Unfortunately she stops with her shenanigans early on. There is a whole story behind her actions, a very tragic one. She believes she is her own mother and stuff. This is a time traveling anime, okey. Karen, daughter of the mayor, just wants to run away and see her mom, who she is convinced abandoned her. Well, what did I say about the ferry folks? A fake wedding with the policeman and a pact with her cute brother, whom we never see again, helps her escape. She’s soon back though. Three little high school (or are they in middle school? No, I think high school) girls who are always together, giggling and talking, giving silly comments now and then. Extras if you will. Friends with Karen.


She sucks as an assassin but who cares, she’s still my spirit animal.

Oh yeah, the most important person of them all; Rinne’s mom Kuon. Kuon is a shut in. She communicates with notes under the closed door to her room. She comes out rarely, only to get massages from Sara. She’s cute, looking exactly like her daughter. It’s no mystery that Setsuna almost falls in love with Rinne. Oh boy, what do you mean by that, weren’t you talking about Kuon? Yeah well, obviously. I did mention a sex scene in the beginning right? Well, Setsuna didn’t have sex with Rinne, he had sex with her mother while he was in the past. He then left Kuon (or rather Rinne but that’s another story. Kuon/Rinne decided that her daughter would be named Rinne for reasons. Watch the anime if you want to know why. It’s just gonna be long and confusing to explain. It has to do with the other Setsuna and his mother though.) to go back and save the future because he failed miserably the first time. You know, that time he woke up naked and didn’t have a memory at all.

It is a mess, sure, you can chose to look at it like that. Or, you can take time and actually think about what is happening. It’s an anime about time traveling. Something bad has happened and somewhere in the future this is known. Setsuna comes back to fix the problem but the first time he fails. Rinne dies. Kuon blames Setsuna of course and asks him to fix it so he goes back in time again and meets the original Rinne, Kuon that is, and falls in love with her. And this time it is love, real love. He might have been attracted to Rinne and perhaps it was some kind of crush but he actually loves Rinne 2. So much so they even get married and they sleep with each other, making her pregnant, before he once again leaves to save the future, and their daughter. None of them knows that at that given moment of course but when he comes back Rinne 2/Kuon knows. It takes Setsuna a while to realise but when he does everything is clear to him and in the end the right Rinne get’s her Setsuna. No, there is no incest. Thank God! Not that I am against incest, but I really don’t like Rinne. I have been rooting for Rinne 2 since she entered the picture. I cried like a little baby when he left her in the past/future and I cried when he went down on his knees and proposed, both in the past/future and in the present, and when they got married. Rinne 2 just makes me cry in a good way.

So there you have it; I cried this morning because this precious little anime is over. I will watch it again now that I know fully what is going on. Sure, there are still problems. I don’t get this whole “you can only go forward in time and not back wards because you are really only frozen in time” and still Setsuna seems to be able to go backwards and forwards to Rinne 2. But I might miss something and that something might be clear to me if I watch it again. I am seriously thinking of playing the game too because I feel like there is a lot more to the story than this. As with many visual novel adaptations it is hard to fit all routes and endings in 12 episodes and you can tell that there is holes that at least I want to fill. Karen and Sara’s happy (?) endings got one episodes each and that is just not enough. And yeah, the game is an all ages game and no, there is no fan service so go complain about it being one of those games somewhere else. It is not. The only thing worrying me when I have read about it is the fact that Rinne 2 doesn’t seem to have her own route.

Well, I have rambled enough now. Let’s finish this with: I love ISLAND.

Yes Sara, yes! That is exactly what I mean.


12 thoughts on “ISLAND – The End [Let’s Take A Moment]

  1. I just finished my review of Episode 12, it’ll come out at 10AM Tuesday AEST, but yeah, I’m so glad you loved this show as much as I did! It’s messy but for me that’s absolutely a part of the appeal! Hopefully my review can clear up a bit of confusion about the time travel aspect. Actually screw it, I’ll just copy-paste my bit about the time travel in this show from how I understand it:

    “Okay, so this bits a little bit more complicated and kind of explained in a single-scene despite its rather impactful ramifications but basically time-travel doesn’t exist, least not backwards time-travel. I guess in a way that helps rule out pesky things like paradoxes and there being two of a person in any one time. What’s actually happening is that time itself is looping infinitely, from the stone-age to the period of time presumably around the new ice age that envelops the Earth and the last remnants of humanity living on the Island as seen in the ‘NEVER ISLAND’ arc. And so when Setsuna or anyone else enters the stasis pods they simply are in stasis for another lap of human history and wake-up roughly when they intend to. So everything that happened in the previous episodes still happened and time wasn’t changed via time travel it’s just that history repeats itself just with the people who enter stasis having the knowledge of their previous go around of history.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A time travel story that isn’t messy is to me a mystery. You should have to think twice I think otherwise someone is doing something wrong. Anyway, yeah, it’s kind of fun because when I studied at the university I had a long running (as that whole class we were taking. More focus on that than the subject we were taking.) discussion about the time looping like that. This means that we have no idea how long they have been going and in what time period they really are. We just assume they are where we are but they might as well be in the year 22000 or something. Which is interesting I think. And it also make sense. History only repeats itself; you are born, you live like the previous life and you die when you are supposed to. In a way it is to travel both ways because you can end up in the past, only the new past. I mean, if history only repeats itself it’s the same past as the previous past. It’s of course the future as well since time only moves forward but still, time goes in circles. I wonder though, why didn’t Setsuna have any memories of his first time coming to the island? The second time he was completely clear on what had happened, where he came from and what he had to do, but the first time he was totally unaware. Maybe they explain it in the anime but I can’t remember right now.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t know that they explicitly said why he remembers as much as he does when he returns the second time, I kind of just took it as face value and was like, “well the series has to end soon so he can’t spend 6 episodes feeling his way through it”. Maybe that’s bad storytelling but it still worked for me!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Nah, its tv-logic. I don’t mind that he remembered as much as he did the second time. I was just curious if I had forgotten or missed some important information but it sounds like I didn’t.

        I look forward to read your review btw.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Well… I’m going to be honest here with you: This is the first time I haven’t read your post in it’s entirety. I stopped because of the spoiler alert 😳
    Yes..I know…I;m horrible…I promise to return to it though…after I have seen the show itself 😊 As between you and Cactus Matt, you have convinced me to give this one another go 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The only way I could describe time in this show was calling everything, “The Past-Future” because it was so unclear how time moved. Any way, I liked the show and the actual sex scene was a real shocker (in a good way). TV anime just don’t do that, and oddly, especially not VN adaptations. Apparently people are crying pedo and lolicon at folks who like this… again… because of this. So stupid because it made sense and wasn’t presented in some creepy way. Circling back to good stuff, I read up on Reddit that the VN goes into a bit more detail on some of the stuff you were fuzzy on but the anime’s final episodes actually had a fair bit of original content. Since the ending was pretty good I’m glad that everybody who stuck with it was fairly happy with it, including the VN folks who normally hate anime adaptations of stuff like this.


  4. Episode 10… sex.

    What you have described does not sound like lolicon. It sounds like the content itself is not pedophilic but it would particularly *appeal* to adults who get off on underage sex. The perversity is in the mind of the viewer.

    You can do sex for minors without being a pedophile. I mean, minors really do have sex. Sometimes a lot. I would never ask that an important area of life be off limits to anime. The problem is that anime is disproportionately about minors and for minors. The real target audience for almost all anime is the teenager. So they use plot elements that a teenager would find interesting. A teenager wanting to watching teenagers having sex is not pedophilia.

    I prefer heated situations in anime to feature a bit more mature participants. Few things irritate me like deliberately over-sexing a bunch of hormone addled kids. Alas, otaku culture wants to see stories based on their age and a bit younger. So everything is underage even though that isn’t how the world works.


    1. What? I haven’t said anything about pedophiles or lolicon. Or are you talking about why people were outraged about the sex scene? Well, if they had actually seen the anime they would know what it was all about. They would know that it had a purpose and also how little you actually see. So how that could appeal to anyone is beyond me.

      I’m not sure when an anime needs sex though. Unless it’s a vital part of the plot, like in this case. It rarely is though. Sure, teenagers have sex but why would there be a need for sex scenes just because of that? I didn’t want to watch kids have sex when I was 15 just because I had reached the age of consent. As a plot point I can absolutely agree that sex in an anime is okey, to the proper audience, but otherwise not.

      As for pedophiles: being a pedophile has very little to do with anime and lolicon/shotacon so let’s not mix the two.

      Liked by 1 person

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