Kuroshitsuji the Musical 2: The Most Beautiful Death in the World
My love for Sebastian, Grell, and crew has not died out whatsoever. In face, I think at times that I really enjoy this musical more. We have some new song styles that you didn’t get to hear in the first musical and I really loved all of the musical performances. It’s too bad that I haven’t progressed all that far in the manga or anime as it might have helped me understand things a little more, but its not necessary to have the complete background.
I do admit to some confusion in the timing and sequence of events. To me, the opera that our main cast attends in drag is reminiscent of a ball that happened during the Jack the Ripper case at the beginning of the manga series, but we hadn’t been introduced to the shinigami [death gods] until after Grell and Madame Red’s sins were exposed. So I really don’t know how the events in this fall in the grand scheme of the manga timeline. Is this an original plot like in the first musical or is it following a direct storyline or combined storylines? Sigh. I’m going to have to go back and start reading Kuroshitsuji once more. I do have to say that it is interesting that this musical comes second in sequence because we get the history of how Sebastian and Ciel’s contract was forged.
We open the musical with a human chess set while William Spears [Nagaoka Takuya who really resembles the manga character of William] instructs the audience about proper behavior [no cameras, cells, etc]. Once this is out of the way an object is wheeled in and it is uncovered to reveal a half-naked Ciel Phantomhive [played this time by Nishii Yukito]. Looks like Ciel is the sacrificial lamb for the evening’s festivities for what looks like bored, wealthy people. Ciel can be heard saying that God doesn’t exist and that in the midst of all that crowd only his black desire to curse those who humiliated him. The performers leave the stage and the caged Ciel alone and Sebastian can be heard. Is this young master the one who wishes to form a contract with him? Ciel asks who the voice is and instead of answering, Sebastian just asks if Ciel is the one who wishes for revenge on those who humiliated him. Yes, that is right. Well the demon has already been summoned, what will Ciel’s decision be? Ciel has already made the important decision – he wants his revenge! The lights go on and we can see Sebastian now and the first song number begins called “Keiyaku.”
The song speaks of Ciel’s suffering and him grabbing on to a spider’s thread of hope to pull himself up out of despair. Sebastian then says that he has the ability to do anything that Ciel wants in order to end his humiliation and get his revenge. All Ciel has to do is give the demon a name and pledge his soul. Sebastian then busts out some fight moves and people begin running, screaming and dying. Sebastian springs Ciel from his cage and Ciel gives the demon the name Sebastian Michaelis. Sebastian then creates the bond between him and ciel [Sebastian’s hand and Ciel’s right eye]. Sebastian says the contract is made and he will now call Ciel [long pause as we transition from the past to present day] “bocchan” [literally young master].
We are now in present day [looks like Ciel was actually dreaming of when he first met Sebastian]. We have our very capable demon butler waking up his charge, helping him dress, giving him his schedule and trying to coax him to eat his vegetables instead of just cake for breakfast. Then in run the three useless servants who are chasing a mouse. Sebastian is annoyed by their noisiness and audacity for barging in on the young master. They explain that they are trying to capture a mouse. They spot it and tell Bocchan to quickly move and they scrabble to get it. Sebastian easily picks up the mouse and hits it out of the park, impressing the useless trio. They exclaim over Sebastian’s skills and he throws out his usual line “what kind of butler would I be…” before chasing the trio out. Meirin then recalls a letter came for Ciel and gives it to Sebastian before scurrying about her business.
The letter is from the queen who wishes for Ciel to look into the mysterious deaths of young women going on around London. The latest victims were a quartet of ladies in a lace club who all died peacefully with smiles on their faces. No visible wounds or blood was found. Is it the work of some poison or some new virus? Just what is going on? Looks like Sebastian and Ciel will have to go to London to investigate.
We then cut to Shinigami Dispatch HQ where the death gods are getting in after a long night of work. Head reaper William scolds Ronald Knox [Yosuke Crawford] for having paperwork not all in order to match up with the number of souls collected. Ronald complains that he isn’t suited for paperwork and is horrified to learn that a report is due as well. Alan Humphries [Matsumoto Shinya] reminds him that actions speak louder than words and Ronald invites Alan out on a group date with the secretarial department. Eric Slingby [Taisuke Saeki] immediately volunteers to go, but Ronald wants none of it. Eric is popular, but he isn’t good with the mood and just wants to drink. Alan then notices that there were no scheduled deaths in London, but people are dropping like flies and no souls have been collected either. The mystery continues. Just what is going on?
William complains that he should never had handled such a case to such an incompetent person. Who does he mean? None other than are beloved Grell [Uehara Takuya]! The flamboyant reaper shows up, late as usual. Grell’s entrance is ignored and the case is then handed over to Alan to take care of. Grell does not like being ignored and wonders why no one is talking to him. LOL, of course he would be ostracized. William is then asked by a newbie why the souls were not collected. William then explains the role of the shinigami. Grell meanwhile, acts this all out. William then explains about demons – nasty soul-stealing vermin [like Grell’s Seba-chan who has also stolen his heart – is Will jealous?]. William has had enough of Grell’s nonsense and orders everyone to work and thus we have the Shinigami Dispatch song [“Shinigami Haken Kyoukai no Theme] and a great coordinated dance that explains the rules of the death gods. I love this number for the fact of these straight-laced men in suits breaking down and singing and dancing.
The number ends and William appoints Alan in charge of Grell’s case. Eric immediately volunteers to accompany him, much to Alan’s dislike. He wants to do a case by himself. William agrees to this and Grell tells the other two not to drag him down. As if that’s possible considering how much Grell doesn’t work. William tries to keep Grell there to do paperwork he’s behind on, but Grell ignores this and goes on his merry way. Eric and Alan then leave to do their job. Ronald then asks William if Alan and Eric have a good relationship or not. William reveals that Eric was Alan’s mentor when Alan first joined the dispatch society, thus Eric has always been protective of him and that is why he has developed “those kind” of feelings.
We then cut back to London where Abberline [Ise Nao] is on the case and his name is being constantly said wrong again. He then meets a detective named Sharpe Hanks [Aoki Takatoshi] who will be his contact with the local police for the investigation. Thus is born a comedic duo going on about a chin gag that has to do with the puns on both their names. Ciel and Sebastian appear at this time as well. Hanks spouts off all the information he knows about Ciel Phantomhive and Sebastian corrects him on a thing or two and then the Earl and his butler go on their separate ways leaving the two detectives behind, much to Abberline’s dislike. Hangs then gives a rundown on Abberline who corrects him on a few facts as well and they go after Ciel and Sebastian, or try to at least.
Ciel and Sebastian have decided to pay Undertaker a visit as all the bodies from the mysterious deaths all end up on his doorstep [since he’s the undertaker after all]. Of course, information isn’t free – they have to give him a great laugh. Sebastian’s try fails and we learn that the Undertaker yearns for love this time, not for a laugh. Thus starts Sebastian’s number about loving being stained with blood. He’s even got chorus girls [the song style reminds me of Trot…or maybe Enka would be correct since it’s in Japan]. The title is “Ai wa Chi Mamire.” Undertaker is surprised by all the hoopla and extras, but dearly loves the number.
Ciel doesn’t believe Sebastian’s song and dance will have won over Undertaker, but the 13-year-old Earl is shocked to learn that it was enough for Undertaker. Sebastian says that Ciel must still be too young to understand the deptsh of love. Ciel doesn’t get this at all – love is shallow. Undertaker squirms in delight and reveals what he knows. The bodies are unharmed, no sign of struggle or violence, and it seems that they all died instantly, plus they all appear to have died at peace. Ciel is annoyed as that is what they have already learned from the newspapers. How is this helpful? Undertaker then says that the method of killing cannot be done by a human. Looks like the case just got more interesting. Ciel then orders Sebastian to find the killer.
Chess is really a big theme in this musical. Thus begins a song and dance number [the extras really do a lot of the dancing as opposed to the main cast in this one]. The song is “Black and White” and is a duet between Ciel and Sebastian. This version is Ciel putting his pawn [aka Sebastian] into play and Sebastian vowing to become his master’s sword. It is time for his lord to move him into the checkmate position. Now, Nishii isn’t a bad singer, but I don’t like his voice as much as the previous Ciel’s. As the musical goes on though, Ciel’s voice does seem to blend better with Sebastian’s.
After this song ends, Eric and Alan appear. Eric realizes that Sebastian must be the one that Grell is always talking about – pretty hot indeed. Ciel demands to know who they are and Sebastian says that they are probably shinigami. Sebastian then goads them by saying they have arrived late. This angers Alan and Eric has to stop him from lunging at our demon butler. Eric says it is easy to find fault and then complains about how due to the strange situation, the shinigami are forced to work overtime [a think all shinigami hate to do]. Eric wishes to know what Ciel and Sebastian are doing there, but Sebastian wants to know why he should inform a death god of his actions. This annoys Alan even more and he charges Sebastian who takes out his trusty weapons [silverware, lol]. The two fight until Alan collapses. We then have Grell enter the scene and he explains that Alan is dying. It is said that some shinigami become infected with the “thorns of death” due to reaping humans souls. Eventually, these thorns will bury themselves into a shinigami’s heart, thus killing the otherwise immortal beings. Sebastian then invites the shinigami back to the Phantomhive manor.On the way to the manor, we have a very pretty-sounding song that basically talks about the curse of the thorns of death on the shinigami. You can also see just how much Eric really cares for Alan. Alan wakes up in the Phantomhive manor and we get to hear how he has always admired his sempai Eric for being so cool and efficient. Eric then reveals how he envies Alan who had always wished to share the pain of those whose souls he reaped. Alan is a good, gentle soul and reaping might not be the best job for him given how much he cares about people. Alan then laughs about how with this disease he finally gets to know the fear and pain of death that humans face. We then get another song. This one speaks of how Alan feels he was born alone and will die alone. If this is his fate, why is he crying? Eric answers with his love for Alan and how much the younger man isn’t really alone. It is a really sweet, heartfelt song and the man playing Alan has an awesome voice.
From here, we cut to a cross-dressing Grell who has been tied up. We then have Grell singing a song titled “R-rated (Grell’s Bootycall]. He sings of his yearning for Sebastian. Grell runs into his crush and it looks like Sebastian has work for the shinigami to do. Grell puts the ropes back on and follows Sebastian out. What does our demon butler have planned as Grell’s very presence usually annoys him to no end? You have to see Uehara Takuya shakes his booty and try to do a seductive female dance. It’s not exactly a fail, but nor does he quite get the “female sexiness.” But still, I heart Grell. 😛
Morning comes and the useless trio have set the dining room up for breakfast that Sebastian has prepared. They call on their guests who would rather leave to investigate rather than stay and eat, but Sebastian insists that they might as well stay and eat as there is no use in investigating further since Sebastian has already found out the culprit. Who is it? None other than shinigami Eric Slingby. This shocks Alan and Eric just laughs, what proof does the demon have? Ciel insists that it’s because Sebastian is good that his butler has already investigated it all in a night and found the culprit. Enter a bedraggled Grell who insinuates that he and Sebastian had quite the night together [they were investigating only, not doing anything naughty, which Sebastian wishes Grell would clarify]. So after a night of investigation and Grell showing how his death scythe works, this is the conclusion that was drawn. It is also the correct conclusion as Eric starts fighting Sebastian. Sebastian hits Eric with Grell’s scythe and the three shinigami and demon watch the replay of Eric reaping the souls from the quartet of women. This proves his guilt and he runs off.
Sebastian orders the servants to clean up and he, Ciel, Grell, and Alan take off to look for Eric who is wondering the streets of London. Eric sees a suspicious man who kidnaps a young woman. The man is Viscount Druitt. The man is a warped and twisted individual who loves to torture young women to death. They are his little birds that he likes to make chirp before killing them. He gets an interesting solo with strains of a rock anthem that reminds of a bit of Queen’s “We Are the Champions” – not sure why that is.Eric comes in and sets the two girls free before singing his own solo about his love for Alan once more. While he is doing this, Druitt is trying to kill the women once more. The women then rush for his help, but Eric promises them a painless, quick death and cuts them with his death scythe. This immediately earns him the respect of Druitt who never though such instant death would be so perfect. Now the lovely birds have their cool beauty preserved, frozen in that moment forever. What a twisted psychopath. It didn’t seem like Eric really liked him at the beginning, but since Druitt can be a means to an end, Eric and he partner up.
Meanwhile, Ronald reports back to William. Looks like things aren’t going well again. Ronald wants to get off quickly to go on a group date when he notices that the death list just increased like crazy. Say what? At this time, an invitation is delivered to Ciel from Druitt. He is throwing an opera for women and children. Men can only come as escorts. That’s even weirder. Druitt tells Eric that the stage for an opera massacre is set and the setting is none other than the Crystal Palace. Then we get the familiar strains of “Black and White,” but this time it is called “Checkmate” and is a pretty cool collaboration from all present on the stage.
Now we get to the cross-dressing! Well, more of it anyways. We start with a black stage and what sounds downright indecent. You know they are trying to make you think that Sebastian and Ciel are engaged in something naughty, but its really just Sebastian getting Ciel into a corset and a dress. The lights come on and Grell complains about Ciel’s more fancy reserved clothing [Grell is baring a lot of skin]. Ciel wonders why he has to crossdress. Since Ciel isn’t a child, how else can they get into Druitt’s opera? Sebastian is to be Ciel’s escort while Alan will escort Grell. But it turns out that Alan has crossdressed as well. He’s going to such embarrassment to be able to see Eric once more. LMAO. Grell’s reaction is so cute. He hates that Alan has dressed as a girl since they both don’t need to be one. Ciel feels like he’s been had, but this means that they can bring more people and thus Sebastian invites the useless trio along, too. They are all excited and seek out Tanaka to figure out just what to wear.
Druitt cannot wait to see Eric’s performance. He is excited for such a massacre. He has invited 1000 people to come – the elite of London. Hearing this, Eric wonders if Ciel was invited, too. Oh well, Ciel won’t be able to stop him, will he? Abberline and Sharpe both make appearances once again [they received the intel about the opera as well]. They have, of course, dressed as women, too. Why Abberline just didn’t escort a cross-dressing Sharpe is beyond me as who would believe Abberline was a woman with all that facial hair? All of the players arrive at the opera and it begins. Ciel is surprised by the viscount’s good taste in music. They watch the performance in fascination while Alan searches for Eric.
The gang wondered how the operation would be done sneakily, but it turns out that wasn’t the plan at all. Druitt and Eric plan to carry the massacre out in front of everyone. Chaos ensues. People are running for their lives. Sebastian orders the useless trio to watch over Ciel, and rushes into the fray along with Grell, William, Ronald, and Alan. At this point its kind of hard to figure out who is fighting who and Ciel has had enough. He moves and is captured by Eric who threatens to kill Ciel. He leaves with the young earl and Sebastian is thoroughly annoyed. Does bocchan love being kidnapped that much?Alan rushes after Eric [who is now alone for whatever reason]. He wants to know just why Eric has gone renegade. He thinks he knows the reason, but he’s hoping he’s wrong. Turns out he’s not. Eric is, indeed, trying to harvest 1000 pure souls [hence why women and children were only invited] in order to cure Alan. Eric doesn’t care if he himself is tarnished or even if he dies as long as Alan can live. Alan doesn’t want to live at such costs. He does, however, wish to remain by Eric’s side until he finally dies. He even takes off his glasses [which is rule #1 of the shinigami – they must always have glasses]. Eric cannot believe that Alan is defying the shinigami as well. He then, too, takes off his glasses and the two run off together.Meanwhile, I guess Eric tied Ciel up and abandoned him. Ciel is waiting to be rescued. Why isn’t Sebastian helping him? Sebastian shows himself and scolds his master for moving when he told him to stay put. Really, does bocchan like being kidnapped. Sebastian says this means Ciel deserves a spanking. He goes to put the younger man over his knee, but Ciel has had enough. He wishes to be released NOW. Sebastian says that he has already told Ciel the proper way to ask for a favor right. Ciel then does a dog noise. This disgusts Sebastian as he loathes dogs. Ciel then finally meows. This makes Sebastian so happy. Ciel yells at him to quit it and thus Sebastian unties his lord and Ciel orders him to kill Eric once and for all.Alan and Eric are escaping when Alan collapses in pain once more. It’s at this time that Sebastian finds the two. He tells Eric that his slaying will be in vain as it ends here. But its not over for Eric, he will keep going no matter what happens. He breaks his promise to Alan and keeps killing. He needs the souls. Sebastian and Eric start fighting and Alan is horrified to learn that Eric broke his promise to him. Sebastian wonders why Eric just doesn’t use his own soul as there is only one more needed. Eric can’t, his soul is already too tarnished. Ciel comes in at this time and Eric decides to make Ciel his last victim. Um, since Ciel has made a compact with a demon, would his soul still be intact and pure? Alan cannot allow Eric to keep killing and jumps in front of Ciel to save him, thus Eric kills Alan instead. T_T
We can see the film of Alan’s life, the memory he treasures most is his first reaping job. Alan is saddened at not being able to save the young man’s life. He wished he could have warned him. Eric tries to comfort him by saying that there is no one who can mess with death when its a person’s time to go. Alan then notices Erica flowers. They mean solitude. We then get the two men singing a duet about their fate. They were born alone. They will die alone. But fate has meant them to be together while they live.
Alan dies, Eric is distraught and begs Sebastian to kill him. Sebastian picks up Alan’s death scythe to do the job. Should he use the scythe to kill Eric? Should he dirty it? In the end, Sebastian does just that. Kind of fitting. After Eric dies, the souls that he stole were released [I was kind of hoping they would revive the two dead shinigami, but no]. Ciel cannot believe the beautiful site before him, its just like falling snow. Hence the name if this musical The Most Beautiful Death in the World. Yes, death is beautiful. While this is going on, Sebastian shoots a dark look Ciel’s way. I wonder if I will ever truly know exactly how Sebastian feels about Ciel. Is he just a servant until the contract is fulfilled and he can get his hands on Ciel’s soul? Or does he genuinely care for the boy? Sometimes, its really hard to read our demon butler.Ronald and William are getting ready to go back to the dispatch now that the mess of the fallen shinigami Eric has been cleaned up. Ronald cannot believe that Sebastian let those souls go. Aren’t souls demons food? William comments that he also cannot believe that one sole soul can mean so much to Sebastian. Ronald doesn’t catch this and William won’t repeat what he said. The two then go back as Grell runs for his pretties and Druitt decides to move on to Paris. I’m kind of surprised that Ciel left that loose end. Abberline and Sharpe, meanwhile, cannot believe the investigation was over and they still have no idea what happened. Abberline vows to keep pursuing the old man with the broom who seemed suspicious [I’m thinking they are probably talking about the mysterious Tanaka who never has a real appearance in the musicals].
The servants have prepared for Ciel’s arrival. Sebastian sends them out as he will take over things from there. Ciel falls asleep and Sebastian cannot wake his young master. Thus we have Sebastian’s solo “Hallucination.” As soon as he started singing, I realized that I have listened to this song over and over again. It’s both a single and on Matsushita’s album. I love this song! He then picks up Ciel to carry him to bed. He tells his master that he doesn’t care for a thousand souls, just one, and when the contract has been fulfilled, he will devour Ciel’s. Scary. So is Ciel really only a meal? And what makes Ciel’s soul so much better?