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This is a "Wild Mass Guess" entry, where we pull out all the sanity stops on theorizing. The regular entry on this topic is elsewhere. Please see this programme note.
From the New World
Squealer is going to declare war on humanity
Bakenezumi colonies have come a long way in the brief 2 year timeskip. Having lobotomized (thus essentially disposing of) their queens, the Robber Fly colony has since merged with other colonies and began to develop advanced weaponry and infrastructure. With a Manipulative Bastard like Squealer at the helm, taking over human settlements seems like a window of opportunity that he would probably not want to miss.
  • Pretty much confirmed in episode 18. Though so far it doesn't seem like specific hatred against humans, but simply lust for power and acknowledgement that humans would never let him be as powerful as he would desire.

Maria's role in the climax. PLACE YOUR BETS!
Way back in Episode 3, a grown-up Saki mentioned that Maria will be responsible for something terrible to happen in the future. What will exactly happen, however, is unclear as of Episode 15. That said, we have the following options:
  • Maria will become The Dreaded Akki: Hoo boy, one could see Maria losing it if something horrible happens to Mamoru.
    • Shun read about the Gouma early in the series and look what became of him. Maria read of the Akki. Signs aren't looking good.
    • Jossed. Tomiko confirms that the bones Yakomaru laid out were in fact those of Maria and Mamoru. She and Mamoru are thus Killed Off for Real.
  • Maria will crank a Face-Heel Turn on Kamisu 66: I think she has enough restraint to not become an Akki. Having something bad happen to Mamoru (especially if the village finds out where they are), however, could affect her view of the world.
    • Nope. How can she cause havoc if she's already dead (as proven by Tomiko)?
  • Maria will die...: And Mamoru becomes The Dreaded Akki. What a twist!
  • Maria will not become an Akki, but her child will: Now that's what I call a simultaneously horrifying, saddening, and shocking surprise.

The series is set in the same universe as AKIRA.
Consider: thematically there are many great similarities. The younger generation developing uncontrollable psychic powers that ravage their users and surroundings. A society that comes to the brink of destruction because of their use. An absolute imperial monarchy set up in the ruins of the old world under the most powerful psychic in the region. Basically, we can deduce that Tetsuo was the first, unrecorded victim of a particularly severe case of the Raman-Clogius Syndrome. And the Boy A? That was Kaneda. Constant exposure to psychic powers caused his own psychic potential to manifest after the series was over, but the experience drove him to insanity and turned him from a chivalrious letch into an obsessive-compulsive rapist-murderer.
  • Furthermore, episode 16 emphasises how deeply the society of Kamisu 66 is built on the fear of children. This was also the theme in AKIRA where the society was in danger of falling apart from the clash of generations.

The series will end in a Kill 'em All fashion.
  • Given the numerous death flags surrounding the characters and Squealer's growing ambitions, we'll probably see vast destruction in this final story arc. With the exception of Saki and Satoru, I really don't see how the series is going to end well for the rest of the cast.
    • Saki and Satoru live, and they even get married. and have a child. However, every other named character bites the bullet by Episode 25, so it's Confirmed.

The real Manipulative Bastard and Big Bad of the series is Tomiko, who is a closet Social Darwinist.
Let's say Tomiko wanted, for whatever reason (I'll get to this later), to have some cantus-users separate from the group and go their own way. Then the events in the series makes perfect sense. Tomiko arranges it so a group of kids are free from the usual mind control of people in their society. When this leads them to step outside the boundaries of the world they're placed in, Tomiko allows enough modifications to avoid immediate consequences but leaves enough for the effects to stay around. Then she waits for things to develop.

Shun turning into a karmic demon may have been an unfortunate occurance for Tomiko (she might have wanted to use him in other ways), but once Mamoru starts to buckle under the strain two years later, she has her chance. She lets the Education Committee plan to get rid of him, then saves him from death (we know she has the final control over the cats), but this makes him afraid enough that he doesn't want to stay around the settlement. Maria deciding to go with him is an added bonus. The bones provide a nice cover story for them Tomiko knows they're still alive, but lies about the DNA and dental testing, so that (if questioned) she can say they are dead for sure. She also starts grooming Saki, using flattery and guidance to get the most leadership-minded member of their group on her side.

But why go to all this trouble? Think of what her motivation might be. She's over 200 years old, and has seen humanity continue to decline over all this time. She also knows the destructive power of ogres and demons, and knows that an ever-increasingly repressed society will eventually collapse on itself. ("A chain is only as strong as its weakest link.") How to make the society stronger? Triumph over an adversary. What adversary? The queerats.

She therefore has allowed queerat society to develop by leaps and bounds under Squealer without pushing back at all. For what it's worth, I find it entirely possible that she allowed them to have the false Minoshiro so that they could develop technologically. When hostilities inevitably break out with the humans, however, she leads the human society in condemning the queerats as despicable, so that they won't wonder what's going on and instead throw themselves into the fight. But all this isn't enough: a concentration of trained cantus-users is still likely to be able to defeat any number of non-cantus users.

Solution: get some cantus-users on the queerat side. More specifically, Maria and Mamoru.

I think that right now, with Tomiko's tacit blessing, Maria and Mamoru are being held captive by the Robber Fly queerats and forced to use their cantus to aid them. Maybe they are brainwashed. Maybe they are working on pain of torture. Maybe they've gone full-scale into madness and become ogres or demons, but with queerats closely minding them. In any case, this would explain whose cantus skills could have caused the genocide of the Giant Hornets without any other humans noticing.

Tomiko's plan is for the humans to free themselves from their former restraints and wipe out the queerats. Then, with independent thinker-turned-leader Saki at the helm, they will recover their glory days of unrestrained cantus use. Will she pull it through? Is this just some loony WMG theory? Only time will tell...

The Akki is a...

  • ....Girl. From some reason Tomiko stating that most of the Akki were boys with the exception of two stayed with me. And, if the akki turns out to be Maria's child, a Strong Family Resemblance wouldn't be amiss especially if it would cause conflict with Saki who might end up having to kill the akki. This could also explain why we haven't seen the akki yet, the big reveal would be more horrifying that way.
    • Jossed. He's a boy. What IS confirmed however is that the Akki is Maria's child. Given that he has his mother's eye and hair color, it's going to be painful for Saki to take him out...
    • It's a girl, after all! Though he was a boy in the original novel, they made her a girl for the anime.

The reason Kiromaru led his original expedition to Tokyo was to find the Psychobuster so he could use it himself.

  • Episode 22 establishes that he led a mission there years before Saki's team goes there, but he never actually says what he was looking for there. its entirely possible that his reason for going there in the first place was to find this weapon, and his reasons for going with Saki's team is because he thinks a team of 3 "gods" has a much higher chance of finding it then his soldiers did.

    • Confirmed
The Akki is not an Akki.
In Episode 22, Saki questions whether or not the Akki really is an Akki, and it was previously shown that the Akki will not attack bakenezumi. It is possible that the Akki thinks of itself as a Bakenezumi and thus, is able to kill humans. Basically, the death feedback and attack inhibition does work on him but would only activate if he attacked a Bakenezumi since, to him, they are the same race.
  • I strongly support this theory. I doubt Akki would be impartial to who they chose to murder. Moreover, the child's expressions and laughter as he's brutally killing the villagers seem more reminiscent to a child at play rather than K's malevolent, purposeful, absolutely euphoric smirks. I'm not saying that either isn't creepy as all hell, but I think I see a difference. I do have one glaring question, however: if the child identified itself as a Bakenezumi, then wouldn't the Death Feedback have activated when he murdered Kiroumaru's troops?
  • That is precisely the reason why it seems likely that the Akki sees itself as a Bakenezumi.Kiroumaru mentioned that his troops fought to the death with their claws after the Akki disarmed them,which showed that the Akki did not kill them.If the Akki could kill Bakenezumi,Yakomaru would have made him kill them all instead of just disarming them and risk losing his troops.
  • Confirmed in episode 25.

Maria and Mamoru's child was responsible for their deaths.
Considering even the Bakenezumi's best technology cannot trump mankind's cantus, Yakomaru's Manipulative Bastard status likely helped in breeding their child into a demon before turning it on them.
  • This is hardly necessary. We see many ingenious ways that the Bakenezumi use to kill people by the hundreds during their attack on Kamisu 66. Simple surprise attack when they were asleep or poison in their food would have done the job without any complications. Maria and Mamoru were a couple of nave teenagers who weren't even expecting an attack from the completely servile and subservient creatures, after all.

Squealer bred his first Akki.
Watchers seem to assume that Maria and Mamoru were captured/killed by the queerats after their kid had been born; but in the same episode they're shown to have disappeared, we're also treated to the revelation that Squealer had his colony's queen lobotomized and has been using her as a mindless breeding machine. There's simply no reason why he wouldn't do the same to Maria and Mamoru.

The series is set in the Bad Future of Zettai Karen Children
The esper-on-human violence shown in this series' "modern world" flashbacks was a result of Minamoto and BABEL's failure to prevent Kaoru's defection to Kyousuke and the esper-human war, leading to the worldwide collapse of civilization and the rise of the Slave Dynasties and the other civilizations of the "500 years ago" period.
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