The lights are on
Kingdom Hearts is a unique series that meshes two very distinct universes into one. The crossover not only proved to be a commercial success, but has continued to weave a compelling and complex story through its many entries. Out of all the intertwining moments of Disney and Final Fantasy characters, I find the end of Roxas’ summer vacation the best.
Disclaimer: Kingdom Hearts II spoilers, and this moment only refers to the story told in this game.
Roxas is a regular teen enjoying the closing days of summer with his best friends. Hanging out, doing last-minute homework, and, of course, eating ice cream. Everything shifts when he starts to have reoccurring dreams about a boy named Sora. In addition, he is blamed for a recent string of robberies.
In time, Roxas finds out that a mysterious person has been stealing mementoes of him from the townspeople and anything else that proves he exists. At this point in the story I was confused, yet intrigued why all this was happening – even more so when I found out Roxas was a Keyblade bearer. Nothing seemed to make sense.
As you play though the game, you start to notice that people don’t recognize Roxas. At times, they are not even aware of his presence, which drives Roxas to find answers from the people that seem to know what’s going on. His old acquaintance Axel, a witch named Naminé, and the mysterious figure DiZ seem to hold the key. Through his turmoil, he discovers searching for the truth is easy, but accepting it is an even greater challenge.
Roxas is a nobody, literally. He was merely born from the hollow shell that a person leaves behind after their heart is stolen. A nobody is not really alive since they have no heart or emotions. Just the natural instinct to do what their former selves did. They are a group who fight their fate, which is to fade back into nothingness from whence they were spawned without leaving a trace. No memories, no joy, and no pain. Simply gone like a whisper in the wind. I can’t imagine the impact that must have on a psyche. Roxas must accept the fact his very existence has been a lie to preserve Sora, still he is special.
Not many games can tell a tale this well, but Kingdom Hearts II does it in its prologue. In just two hours, I played as a person who doesn’t exist, even in the fictional world he was created in, and guided him through his last moments. A tear rolled down my face as Roxas looked up at Sora and simply said, “Looks like my summer vacation is over.”
Summer's End Part 1
Summer's End Part 2