Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
With the third episode of Durarara, we're starting to get a bit more of a feel for the show but it's one that's really hard to pin down. The opening episode of the series was intriguing as it exposed Ikebukuro to the viewer in a truly beautiful way while the second episode showed us the story that played out behind the scenes of that first episode. Understanding the things that were tying together as Mikado became familiar with the city as Kida showed him around was spot on and really gave the whole place a lot more of a life of its own.
The third episode changes things up a bit though as it moves the story forward in a few ways, but they're such small incremental ways that it's hard to pin down exactly what's going on. More than anything, it's a small moment where we see several characters interacting that we haven't yet, and going by what we saw in the second episode, the ties are important in general in this series. For Mikado, he's now found himself in a class rep position which has him getting closer to Anri whom he likes. She of course has eyes elsewhere and is easily distracted by other people, but she also has those who are not happy with her based on some of her past relationships. The main focal scene of the episode revolves around Anri getting mildly accosted by a group of kogals about this. It's the lead-up and what follows that makes it work.
The lead-up is a closer look at the gang nature of Ikebukuro where we are told a bit more about the color gangs and their nature. The one that garners the most attention is the Dollars, which is unique in that they don't have a color and that lets them stand out more. What's even more interesting about them is that it's a gang that thrives on rumors without ever being seen. Every event is slowly being attributed to them though and rumors fly about their activities, made even stranger by the way they apparently recruit online. Naturally, there are your simple stupid street roughs that use the Dollars name to cause trouble even though they're not a part of it and that often causes them to get into even more trouble as time goes on.
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