Mark Watches ‘Monster’: Episode 65 – Johan’s Footprints

In the sixty-fifth episode of Monster, Tenma ponders whether or not to stop the cycle of revenge; Eva learns the truth of the mysterious disciple of Johan. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Monster. 

Trigger Warning: For trauma.

WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH THIS SHOW why can’t i have a break why am i constantly attacked


The title for this episode makes so much sense in hindsight, since this story traces Johan’s influence on multiple characters, on various narrative threads, and on this show as a whole. Just how many lives has he changed? How many long cons has he set up? I wouldn’t say that this episode answers that, but it shows us who walks in Johan’s footsteps—Kristoff Sievernich. But even before THAT reveal is given to us, Nina has an integral confrontation. We’ve seen Capek over the course of this show through Nina’s memories. She knows him as the man who ripped her family apart and who is the source of an immense amount of trauma. So it’s no surprise that she goes with Capek’s men without any hesitation. This is what she’s wanted: to confront the person who ruined her life. Thus, we’re back to that brilliant parallel storytelling that I love so much on Monster. (Except here, there are FOUR revenge storylines: Nina, Milan, Tenma, and Eva. FUCKING INCREDIBLE.) 

So what does Nina do? I was reminded of Tenma pulling a gun on Johan, but being unable to pull the trigger. (Which is fascinating, given what appears to happen at the end of the episode. Tenma isn’t so hesitant anymore, is he? Does that foreshadow what he’ll finally do when he’s in Johan’s presence?) Here, though, I think Nina does this because she has a different goal in mind. She wants to get to her brother. Which is… part of the plan? Why, though? Why is Johan convinced that Nina will kill him? Does he actually want that, or is he manipulating her, too? Because I don’t understand what he did to Cepak. Did he actually poison him? What else does Capek know that Nina doesn’t? I STILL DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT ANYONE’S PLAN WAS.

Kristoff Sievernich

Well, assuming we can trust what Kristoff says, there’s a major hint of what’s actually going on here. It’s no surprise that Johan had his own motivations here, that he was using this whole right-wing terrorist organization to achieve it. And now that we know for sure that Peter Capek was a part of the experiments that Franz Bonaparta started and which were used at Kinderheim 511, I’m back at a revenge narrative. (Perhaps a secret fifth one in this episode?) Kristoff is one of the kids who survived the massacre at the Red Rose Mansion. Though I need to point out that Kristoff is demonstrably wrong about one thing: THERE WERE NOT TWO SURVIVORS. We already met another one: Grimmer!!! PLEASE LET HIM COME BACK IN THE END. He was definitely one of those kids, right??? 

Anyway, I completely forgot that Eva as determined to get revenge for Martin’s murder, so WHAT A REUNION. Eva’s attack on Kristoff is what motivates him to tell her part of the truth, and while all the Kinderheim 511/Red Rose Mansion shit is absolutely captivating, I’m actually more interested in what he tells Eva once he gains control of the situation. I don’t have a reason to believe he was lying to her before that either. It makes sense that Johan and Kristoff were manipulating Capek, and it seems far-fetched that he’d fabricate a backstory that’s so detailed. So… what’s all this shit about being a politician? If Johan is using Kristoff, too, how does that plan fit into everything? Why would Johan want a disciple of his to pursue something so terribly public? Or is this all some fucked up game for them to play? Because I could believe that as well!

It’s admittedly hard to analyze this since the answers I do have only lead me to ask more questions. At center of it all is Johan and Franz Bonaparta. Without knowing what really happened at the Red Rose Mansion or Kinderheim 511, I can’t fully understand Johan and Nina. Without knowing what Johan has set out to do since escaping from the mansion, I can’t comment on what this all means. Is it revenge? Is he getting pleasure out of tormenting people? Is there any greater meaning to all this? I TRULY DON’T KNOW. 

But there are only nine episodes left, y’all. I’m gonna find out how this is all going to wrap up very, very soon. And yes: I’m fucking nervous. 

The video for “Johan’s Footprints” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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