Have you been watching the latest season of Higurashi: When They Cry on Funimation? The series has been re-developing a cult following who has rediscovered how amazing the stories coming out of Hinamizawa are. Sad that the series is over this week? Well, don't be too sad because Funimation announced today that the series will continue for another season this summer in Higurashi: When They Cry Sotsu! The new title is a play on words, as when Sotsu and Gou are combined, it creates the word for "graduation".
Originally a visual novel series produced by 07th Expansion and launched in August 2002 with the eighth game released 4 years later in August 2006. In the series, the story takes place in a small, rural village of Hinamizawa in the year 1983 and stars a teenager named Keiichi Maebara who has just moved to the village with his family for reasons. Soon he makes friends with a group of girls of various ages. One day while exploring the village junkyard with his friend, Rena, Keiichi comes across old newspaper clippings detailing a grisly murder that took place not too long in the past. When he presses for details, he's met with resistance from his friends. It seems that this sleepy little town in the middle of nowhere has its own secrets, which Keiichi must learn about on his own.
Higurashi: When They Cry Gou is the seventh anime season of the franchise's history (the series has already reached 86 episodes total) and Sotsu could easily push it past 100 episodes should it run for multiple cours as Gou did. If you've never watched Higurashi: When They Cry before and attempted to get into it with Gou because you were misled into thinking that it was a remake rather than a sequel, I feel for you from the bottom of my heart.
Higurashi: When They Cry has been one of my favorite horror series ever since I first collected the individual DVDs when Geneon had the license a couple of decades ago (I still own those discs to this day and consider them a precious part of my home video collection). Hearing that the series will get yet another season fills me with joyful dread. Joyful because it means more time with these characters, but dread because Gou took the body horror levels to new heights and I'm not sure my heart can take much more.