UNSETTLING SETTLEMENT. To Love-Ru: Darkness ENDING! (Chapter 77 Review)

Uh.

Where’s the hype?

I could have sworn there was a surprise announcement that Chapter 77 would be the last chapter for To Love-Ru Darkness. Why don’t I feel like it’s over yet?

Right. There was an announced sequel to Darkness. Suddenly, the point of ending it now looks like Hasemi Saki-sensei just wants a breather for the series instead of putting it on life support through unnecessary filters, which is a better choice, from most perspectives.

I admit that I was taken superlatively aback when I read that Darkness would end at 77. I’ve never been so wrong with my predictions for so much. Suddenly, all the questions I had regarding last chapter and possible events for this chapter disappeared as if I never read 76.

Let’s recall Gazer’s Three Possible Endings for TLR:D:

  1. The Harem Route
  2. The True Route
  3. The Open-Ended Route

The story leaned to #2 but didn’t fully commit to it because Rito was still feeling a sort of inner conflict. He needed to confront his feelings towards Lala first before living happily ever after with his middle-school crush.

What happened was…

a-couple-is-born

Well, a testament to Lala’s purity. We’ve always known Lala as one of the most innocent members of the harem, even way more than Mikan, dare I say. Her childlike view in life along with her simple view on love is further emphasized with her predictable reaction to the mutual love between the two people she loves the most. You can’t even wonder whether her love for Rito is smaller than what she’s capable to do for him or even her love for her other dear friends like Haruna. She just loves them all like a child loves her parents.

It’s sweet.

So sweet that Rito can’t bear to reject her at all.

crycry

Neither can Haruna!

take-turns

Seriously, give the Threesome Route a chance, man! Hasn’t all the years you’ve stuck with her become of any value to you, Rito? It’s no longer a responsibility to those you’ve bothered. It’s a test of how much you value your friends, up to what point you can be comfortable with them.

And with that, that’s the last we see of Lala. To be honest, OG TLR’s focus wasn’t on the eldest daughter at all. It obviously had to focus on Rito. Darkness’ focus didn’t help, either, because the focus was entirely shifted to the youngest daughter, Momo, and those related to the Darkness project: Nemesis, Yami, and Mea.

incredible

Wondering if the focus turned to one of the girls… Haruna is so ready to be violated out of love from Rito, instead of looking away, she stares in awe of what awaits her.

Speaking of our master planner, what did she decide to do for the harem plan, anyway?

The only thing to keep the Harem King’s troubled mind even more unsettled!

s019

But, really? Momo hasn’t publicly declared her love for Rito at all? Maybe it’s because it’s only hugely implied, if you’re looking at it just from Rito’s perspective. This isn’t your case of “dense MC”. Rito only saw Momo as the main advocate of the Harem Plan and as another girl he’s sort of inconvenienced.

Overall, since it’s the ending of the manga, everyone, referring to the main characters, just became honest with each other. We also get bonus shots of everyone else in the harem. The final pages where the main character (in this case, the focus, Momo) talks to someone outside the panels i.e through a letter has to be one of the most common  way to signal the end a manga, yet I’m only pointing it out now.

So, which of Gazer’s Three Possible Endings did we end up with?

Surprisingly, disappointingly, we get #3. The Open-Ended Ending. As Momo said…

too-early

Well, seeing as there’s going to be a sequel, the Open-Ended Ending becomes more appropriate than if there wasn’t a planned sequel. All that build-up for the harem plan for naught? I hope the sequel delivers. For now, I’ll just be considering TLR: Darkness as if it was on a hiatus.

I guess the take-away that To Love-Ru: Darkness has for us readers who’s seriously reading it for the plot is that being in love is fun. Being in love is troubling. Even so, being in love ultimately requires one to be fully honest in every aspect. Any sign of faltering is a clear sign of dishonesty, causing lies and deceit which devastates any relationship.

What’s next for TLR at this point? At the end of the chapter, it was mentioned that there will be bangaihens or shorts in the May and June editions of SQ. These shorts won’t be epilogue-ish in nature, I would confidently assume. They’re extra chapters, for crying out loud! At least we get a bit more of an enjoyment for TLR after the ending. Two months more of extra content. Yay! 😄

With Momo’s character development sort of done and dusted, can we shift our focus back to Rito for the sequel? Also from the final page of 77, “his days of love trouble are set to continue”. He still has a huge issue whether he should stick with his one true love, Haruna, and completely reject Lala, or somehow convince himself that it’s fine if it’s just the three of them sharing the love with one another. It’s too troubling to predict the next scenarios for the upcoming sequel, so I hope that Hasemi Saki-sensei’s time off significantly bears fruit, and I hope that the sequel will be successful, in terms of sales and story.

That took too long again for a quick and sudden post. Darkness might have ended today, but a lot more is to come, and I’m still hyped for all those! With that, pics to where they are due. Thanks for the read, and have a good one today! 😄

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