You probably shouldn’t keep reading this post if you haven’t managed to watch the last episode of BORDER yet. I warned you. So yeah, I thought I’d make a last comment on what I thought of the ending of BORDER. I have to say that I was pretty surprised about what happened, and I’m sure that a lot of people probably didn’t actually like the way the series ended but the more and more that I think about it the more that the ending seemed natural to me. To explain what I mean I’ll have to go over a quick Japanese lesson. If you’re interested in reading it just hit the jump.
So here’s the quick Japanese lesson, the last 3 episodes of BORDER were titled Haiboku(敗北), Kestudan(決断) and Ekkyou(越境). Haiboku means to lose at a match or in a war, and that was the episode where Ishikawa wasn’t able to arrest the politicians son for the hit and run. Kestudan was the next one and Ketsudan is a word used when making a decision(usually a big one) about something, in that episode Ishikawa, Tachibana and their squad leader ended up springing Director Kamogawa. Ekkyou was the last episode and Ekkyou essentially means crossing some sort of line. When you think about it it’s all actually really simple, BORDER represents the line that Ishikawa crossed in the last episode.
What do I mean by a line though? I think it’s probably meant to be a line that dictates good and evil. Ishikawa’s sense of justice was made incredibly strong by his ability to talk to the dead and this also lead him to using unorthodox(and just plain illegal) investigation methods. He knew who the criminal was every single time and had to trick them somehow, either by springing them using the help of black-market experts or by planting evidence(or something of that variety). When Ishikawa was doing this he still hadn’t crossed any “line” so to speak but the first time he came closed was in Haiboku, he lost to the professional hired to clean up everything for the young criminal. He also made a lot of the people around him scared of him. His sense of justice got the better of him again in Kestudan when he sprung the Director.
And finally he broke in the last Episode, Ekkyou. I read a lot of theories about the ending, some people suggest that Ishikawa consequently ended his own life and “the other side” meant the world after death. Others suggested that because Ishikawa had resorted to killing someone that the “other side” was that of a villian character and their ruthless, evil methods. I took one important lesson from BORDER, and that is that nothing is ever really black or white. There’s so many grey areas in life and deciding whether they are black or white, or good or evil, is very objective. Does someone stop being a hero if they kill an enemy? Is someone evil because they use questionable methods to reach an overall goal, or a means to an end?
That’s just my two cents about the ending shown in BORDER. It’s just my opinion, and there’s no black or white about it. It’s grey too. I want to thank everyone who supported me up until now with subtitling BORDER. If you have any of your own comments please feel free to post them below. I’d love to hear about any theories other people have about the ending. Also stay tuned to D-Addicts and my blog this week because I will be announcing a new project to take up time between BORDER and HERO. I’ve already subbed the first episode of it, it just needs spell checks and some editing so expect that either tomorrow or possibly Sunday of this week.