Death Comes to Dinner
This episode marks the appearance of Yuki’s mother Amano Rea (Mizuhara Kaoru), whom he picks up at the station after a long absence due to her long-hours as a game programmer. Even at first sight, hers is a character design that resembles K-On!‘s Yamanaka Sawako-sensei, a fitting connection to the Mirai Nikki universe as Sawako-sensei harbors something of a darker side underneath her saccharine sweet, sugar-fluff teacher image and is voiced by Sanada Asami, who incidentally debuts near the end of the episode.
The day begins as Yuno, using her journal’s foresight, crashes Yuki’s home and immediately sets about cooking and cleaning house in an effort to have Yuki’s mother acknowledge their relationship. Yuki is not so much unsettled about seeing Yuno in his own home (though unsettled he is) so much as he is disturbed at her so freely insinuating herself into his family dynamic, methodically ingratiating herself into the good graces of his mother. All the more to his dismay, Rea takes an immediate liking to Yuno, who puts on her best shrinking violet act since the start of the series.
It turns out Rea is home on leave from her job for several days, during which time she will be taking care of a young child of a co-worker who was killed in the incident at the Sacred Eye cult compound. Yuki notes to himself it is very likely the child’s parents were among the many Yuno personally killed over the course of the bloody fiasco. That night, Yuno sleeps over in Yuki’s room at his mother’s invitation, where she informs him the future will bring them together.
The next morning Yuki and Yuno awaken to find Rea returning home with a small boy, Houjou Reisuke (Sanada Asami), the orphaned child temporarily entrusted to her care. Rambunctious and spirited, the cherubic Reisuke seems normal, but is in fact revealed to be the Fifth Future Journal holder after a botched attempt on Yuno’s life.
It’s one thing to marry an axe murderer; it’s a completely different matter altogether when you’ve identified the axe-crazy as such beforehand and your own mother is pulling for the two of you to get together. Granted, Rea has no clue as to Yuno’s true yandere nature but the entire situation makes for a frustratingly awkward situation for Yuki, who has no way of expressing himself to his mother without certain, decisive retribution on Yuno’s part.
I’ve only known Sanada Asami in reference to her comedic roles (e.g. Maria+Holic; Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei series) which makes her turn here as Houjou Reisuke all the more striking, and surprisingly good. Yuno’s demonstrated resourcefulness, ruthlessness and diabolical cunning makes her one of the most dangerous players in the Survival Game, so anyone pitting their wits against hers will have to be nothing less to ensure their own survival. we’ll just have to see how Reisuke’s Super Vision Diary stacks up in the game in coming weeks.