SPOILER ALERT: Spoilers follow, beware
WARNING ALERT: There is no intention here to offend anyone’s religious views, or to diminish one’s love for the story of Houseki no Kuni. You will find negative comments below. If you cannot handle them, then you should stop reading now, and forget about this blog. If you proceed to read this, then do not pretend to be offended because you have been warned.
For the wikipedia page of the manga, please see
This is a link to all the Land of the Lustrous blog entries here at Pywackett Productions
We were planning on doing a review of Houseki no Kuni – Land of the Lustrous (TV) but we came across this review video by Zeroloid, and we were fascinated by his analysis such that we did not think we could write a better review, and so we just referenced that video below:
Recently Zeroloid released another video review, but this time of the manga version of Land of the Lustrous up to chapter 93. This is also excellent but we have concerns after viewing the final two chapters 94 and 95. With CH 95, the author, Ms Haruko Ichikawa has placed the story into hiatus with no startup date as of this writing.
For the Zeroloid review please view the following link:
Houseki no Kuni Ch.82-93 Analysis – The Broken Bodhisattva
In some ways, this blog entry which you are reading is a review of both the Land of the Lustrous manga, and also Zeroloid’s review of the manga above.
Normally we at Pywackett Productions do not follow the manga story of an anime. Every interpretation of a story is different, and so in many subtle and not so subtle ways, a manga story and its anime are entirely different works of art, no matter their similarities.
But here we have violated our own rule. When it does not appear that an anime will ever be completed such as Bloom into You left everyone hanging, or the Chihayafuru series, with the anime so far behind the manga, we do then read the manga.
So when Houseki no Kuni anime completed its last episode 12, and no S2 appeared to be in the offing, we went to the manga. In fact in the following analysis of a possible S2, Sumera Bijani 2020-11-20
says that perhaps
“Despite there being enough material for a second season, Studio Orange has not announced a follow-up from the first season. This is quite an odd development considering how well the first season performed and how the sales of the manga almost doubled after its anime debut back in October 2017. Unless, of course, the anime’s sole purpose was to promote the manga series, which it has clearly succeeded in.” This could very well be true.
So we here at Pywackett Productions went into the manga and have completed all chapters up to the final CH 95 which put the story into hiatus.
And we were shocked down to our booties that the story should take this turn into monstrous depravity, almost torture porn of our little Phos, and without any seemingly redeeming benefits.
The suspicion here is that Ms Ichikawa has taken hiatus because she doesn’t know where she is going with this story. That, in fact, she has lost control of her own story.
We do not intend to be offensive but covering an inability to tell a tale with a lot of religious mumbo-jumbo is desperation, not authoring.
As mentioned above, we were exceptionally proud of Zeroloid’s analysis of the the 12 EP TV series such that we simply quoted his analysis, but in his new analysis of the manga, he seemingly takes all the religious stuff seriously and devotes a great deal of time to the “The Broken Bodhisattva” idea.
His 16:08 video from 0 – 14:16 is once again a brilliant analysis of functional elements of the Buddhist religion with a few emotional plea’s scattered like gems among all the head work.
01:22 “The Trauma Truck was never meant to carry loads this heavy”
If you have followed Zeroloid, his invention of the Trauma Truck metaphor is outstandingly beautiful and fully visually descriptive of what is going on in any particular scene. But to admit that it cannot carry Houseki no Kuni any longer is devastatingly telling.
04:22 “Cutting Bort’s hair was an actual crime, Ichikawa” Yes, it was
06:09 “This is insanity” Yes, it is
06:40 “Lustrated means to erase one’s existence” which is the meaning of Nirvana, to blow out the
candle of life. Because life is just so horrible and unsatisfactory, it is best to blow out of
existence this singular flame. Death without rebirth is the ultimate goal.
08:13 “Humans have a tendency to be self-destructive, to knowingly follow paths that are dangerous
and find no joy in the process.” Another brilliant observation by Zeroloid, and so, so true.
But at 14:16, Zeroloid leaves analytic mode, and says “Now for some closing thoughts” and this really hurts, because Zeroloid sounds like he is the Trauma Truck, and he is breaking under the load. We would recommend that all fans of Houseki listen especially to this portion of the Zeroloid video.
So as Zeroloid had said and as many in the Houseki literary review community seem to have coalesced around, is that Ms. Ichikawa appears to intend that after the 10,000 year learning curve on Earth of Phos absorbing Sensei’s memories, Phos will become the new Sensei, find all the gems again, and even finally a baby Phos, and everything repeats. We end with the Myth of the Eternal Return. Nothing ever changes, but just repeats for all eternity. All the vengeance, all the blood-letting, all the hatred and evil keeps repeating such that Absolute death, leaving forever this universe is the only option and the only good. Hoo-boy, that is some load in the Trauma Truck.
And one which we at Pywackett Productions do not accept because it breaks minds, and hearts, souls and trucks. We come from an entirely different literary tradition, where we “Rage, rage against the dying of the light” (Do not go gentle into that good night Dylan Thomas – 1914-1953). Perhaps Ms Ichikawa achieves enlightenment during her hiatus playing with her PS5, and she surprises everyone with some brilliant denouement which no one sees coming. Certainly the limitations of our vision, are not the limitations of a much greater universe of people and purposes. If so, we pre-apologize to Ms Ichikawa for doubting her, but come on, where is the evidence for any purpose or goal in what has been laid down already?
Until she can show otherwise, the assumption that she has lost control of her story stands.
Would you buy a used car from this man?
The Gems WERE enjoying their lives in safety, comfort, and happiness until the gas lighter sent his army of moon monks to attack and destroy the gems. And the Gems have no fore-bearers because they are genderless, something the Moon Creep seems to have forgotten. We also learn that this slime-ball is also Enma, the Buddhist god of the afterlife. Ah yes, more exposition that explains things in the story and clarifies all plot points.
And now the objective is Lustration into becoming a Moon Monk filled with light such that
losing all individuality, becoming identical to each other with no unique luster or coloration, is the goal of changing your race from Gem to Lunarian.
Now that sounds like oodles of fun. Reminds me of Sunday School where the preacher tells us about Heaven, where everything is beautiful White light, and how we will spend all eternity in the Celestial Choir singing the praises of the Almighty One. “Heaven is a place, A place where nothing, Nothing ever happens” Heaven(1979) Talking Heads
Of course the Moon Monks at one time, wanted the Gems for their unique luster and coloration as decorations for their Moon Heaven. But now after the 10,000 year hiatus, the New Sensei, “the new boss, just like the old boss” prays, and blows out the light, and we restart.
Pardon for being slightly underwhelmed. If we pray, will that blow this nonsense out of existence?
© 2021 Folcwine P. Pywackett (mox010)