The nature of Yuno and Yuuki’s relationship is one of precarious deception on both ends, with one socially inept person entirely dependent on the other, whose mental instability would make Hannibal Lector blush and cease his devouring of a poor man’s brains to clean himself up. As the situation becomes more dire for Yuuki and Yuno grows more and more deranged with each passing episode, Yuuki’s faced with the inevitability of his life ending either figuratively as he’s stuck with Yuno, or literally as he breaks up with her, driving her into a murderous rage. And in no way is that more evident than in this episode, where the two take part in a mock wedding.
It’s been well established since the beginning that Yuuki is a socially clueless, closed off individual with the appropriate emotional maturity of a teenage boy. As the series goes on, he breaks more and more out of his shell in spite of Yuno. He goes from simply standing by and recording everything he can in a diary on his cell phone to actively trying to make friends, who all either want to hurt him in one way or another or throw suspicious glances and sly grins his way. If it weren’t for Yuno hounding him constantly to be her boyfriend, he wouldn’t have the drive to go and make new friends as a way to cope with the threat of being offed at any moment by a crazed bubblegum-haired classmate.
However, we can see that he’s not really all that enthused to be with Yuno, for obvious reasons. Putting aside the fact that she has, or had, dead bodies cluttering up one of the rooms in her house, she doesn’t give him a moment of rest and even takes up an offer to attend a free mock wedding rehearsal given to her by Not-Kaworu. Yet, he convinces himself through the potent power of denial that being with Yuno wouldn’t be a bad thing, despite her continuous counter-denial regarding his prior unease with the dead bodies in the sectioned off room. It’s equilibrium of denial on both ends, one that somehow lends itself to a functional, if strained relationship without either side gaining much of an upper hand.
Taking a look at Yuno and her total disregard for anybody that’s not Yuuki, she still fails to paint a picture of perfect mental health. It says a lot about her displayed behavior when any scene of her staring placidly somewhere with a faint smirk can come across as unnerving, rather than comforting. Despite the assurance brought on by Yuuki asking her out, her health just keeps getting worse as she digs gigantic holes for reasons that she doesn’t remember and stares at him with gormless fascination.
However, I don’t think I can say that it’s an entirely unhealthy relationship. Yeah, Yuuki keeps digging himself deeper by playing along with the charade of their relationship, but Yuno is providing a service by keeping him from being maimed by anybody else. What’s more, as mentioned earlier, she has indirectly prompted him to break out of his shell and talk to new people. And for her, as Not-Kaworu puts it, Yuuki keeps her mentally stable when he’s around her… something temporary, true, but definitely kind of important. Through their mutually detrimental relationship with each other, they’ve found a way to keep themselves from destroying each other. And since their diaries provide perfect coverage for the other, there’s no way that breaking it off until the end of the cell phone-based Battle Royale would be a smart idea, safety-wise. In short, staying together is in both of their best interests in spite of how destructive it is for both.
So for discussion value, what do my readers think? Do you think that Yuuki’s choice to stay with Yuno and proclaim their relationship to the world is a tentatively smart idea? Do you think that their two forms of denial somehow cancel each other out and form something somewhat beneficial for both? Or do you think that their mutual parasitism ultimately do nothing but further the misunderstanding between them?
As for the episode itself, it was pretty telling. Yuuki doesn’t want to be in the situation that he’s in, Yuno is totally oblivious to his silent objections, and we get a neat look at Ninth’s past to prove that she’s not a total monster; just mostly one. Nothing that was really essential to knowing, but it’s good to know that she’s not as one-dimensional as she was made out to be at first.