|Original VN Release Date||August 15, 2003|
|Translated VN Release Date(s)|
|Anime Air Date(s)||May 16-June 27, 2006|
|Manga Release Date(s)||Japanese
|Light Novel Release Date(s)|
|Live Action Release Date||June 17-24, 2016 (TV)|
Tatarigoroshi-hen (祟殺し編, Curse Killing Chapter), is the third question arc in the Higurashi no Naku Koro ni series, released on August 15, 2003. Unlike the previous arcs Onikakushi-hen and Watanagashi-hen it has five chapters instead of four. Tatarigoroshi-hen is preceded by Watanagashi-hen and followed by Himatsubushi-hen. The story focuses mainly on the Hōjō family, and is the first arc to reveal details about Hōjō Satoko's older brother, Hōjō Satoshi, who vanished on Satoko's birthday the year prior as an alleged result of Oyashiro-sama's curse. It is told from the perspectives of Maebara Keiichi and Satoko. It also includes the first identified appearances of Irie Kyōsuke, the physician who runs the local clinic, and Hōjō Teppei, Satoko's abusive uncle.
Similar to the previous arc, this has characters showing up after they were apparently confirmed to be dead along with bodies disappearing from where they were apparently buried. Every person whom Keiichi wishes to die or simply curses seemingly does so.
Due to concerns with his artistic work out of town, Keiichi's father and mother leave Keiichi alone for a few days. Keiichi despairs about providing his own meals. Provoked, Keiichi rashly challenges Satoko to a cooking contest which both know he will lose. She and Rika go to his house to check on his progress, only to find out that the food is burning and they just manage to stop him from burning his house down. Satoko takes charge and cooks the meal for all three of them. From Rika, and later through a conversation with "the [baseball team] Manager," Dr. Irie, Keiichi learns about Satoko's past and her love for her missing brother Satoshi. Satoko and Keiichi continue to bond, with Keiichi becoming her new "Nii-Nii" (お兄さん・oniisan・older brother).
Unfortunately, Satoko's uncle Teppei returns to Hinamizawa to take custody of Satoko and resume an abusive relationship with her, where he treats her like a slave while demanding money from her. Keiichi finds the fatalistic reactions from his friends, Irie and even the teacher Chie Rumiko disturbing. He quickly learns what they have all learned: because Satoko previously made a false abuse claim against her stepfather, child services will not act without evidence, and Satoko will not report her uncle's abuse out of fear of him. Teppei has cowed her with threats to destroy her brother's room, and the hope that Satoshi will one day return to her is all she feels she has. There appears nothing they can do and attempts to intervene only provoke more abuse.
Keiichi cannot accept this stalemate, and he makes it his personal mission to rescue Satoko. He has a breaking point when he tries one day to pat her head which Satoko interprets as Teppei about to abuse her. Keiichi swears and plots to kill Hōjō Teppei. Keiichi chooses the night of the Watanagashi Festival after concluding that it was Satoshi who killed his and Satoko's aunt on the same night the year previously. He calls Mion and tells her to take Satoko to the festival since he will be busy. This matches the request Satoshi made the previous year. On the eve of Watanagashi, Keiichi takes Satoshi's bat, lures Teppei out to the forest, kills him by beating him to death, and buries him there. He disposes of Teppei's motorcycle and Satoshi's bat in the Onigafuchi Swamp.
Expecting his days to be happy again, Keiichi goes to school the next morning and is delighted to see Satoko. Unfortunately, he soon realizes that nothing seems to be right. All of his friends, including Satoko, all claim that he attended the festival with them, and that Satoko had gone home early at the request of her uncle, who is still alive. This confuses and frustrates Keiichi.
He decides to confess to Irie about what happened, and the doctor tearfully thanks him for what he had done. When Keiichi tells him that Teppei was still alive; however, Irie hesitantly suggests the worst: that Keiichi killed the wrong man. Irie leaves claiming to make him some tea for them, but Keiichi overhears Irie instructing his staff to mix Keiichi's tea with sedatives, as well as news of Takano turning up dead in the mountains. Feeling betrayed, he wishes Irie were dead as he flees from the clinic.
Becoming mad and untrustworthy of everyone, he returns to the forest to prove, to himself, that the body he buried was Teppei's by checking the nape of his neck for tattoos. As he digs, Ōishi, Komiyama and Kumagai find him. Ōishi does not respond well to Keiichi's obstinate attitude and forces him to continue digging. Keiichi eventually strikes something hard with his shovel. Kumagai throws Keiichi out of the pit to finish exposing the hard object only to find a rock. Frustrated that their lead panned out, the officers leave after noting the condition of the soil suggests that it had previously been dug out and placed back in.
Keiichi learns that all the people whom he wished dead from the day of killing Teppei have now died, convincing him that he now holds a power in this world to erase human life. He returns to Teppei's house, hoping to find him and kill him again. Instead, he finds Satoko seemingly scalding herself in a hot bath while counting down from an unreasonably high number to satisfy an order from her uncle. Keiichi rescues her and takes her to the Irie clinic, but they hear the radio of a nearby police car announce the death of Irie by an apparent suicide. They leave unseen and disheartened.
Throughout their journey, Keiichi becomes more unstable as he starts telling Satoko about his newfound powers. Satoko is creeped out at first but forgives and accepts him for being who he is. However, Satoko becomes unable to process his denial that Teppei is alive, though an emotional Keiichi presses on and confesses to killing him. They retreat to the Furude Shrine so that Satoko can change into clothes, only for Keiichi to find an axe and the dead and disemboweled naked body of Rika surrounded by crows feasting on her, causing him to scream in horror. He grabs the axe and frightens the crows away, however the axe slips from his hands and falls into Rika’s pool of blood. Keichii picks up the axe, now covered in Rika’s blood.
Seeing Keiichi with the axe in his hand and Rika mutilated before him, a returning Satoko assumes he killed her and screams that he is a murderer. Satoko becomes unstable. She recounts having stumbled into Oyashiro-sama's toolshed prior to her parents' deaths and claims Oyashiro-sama possessed her to kill them as punishment. She believes Oyashiro-sama has possessed Keiichi to murder Rika. Keiichi begs for Satoko to believe his pleas of innocence when he confronts her on a bridge. Convinced that he is possessed, Satoko pushes him off the bridge. As he falls, he wishes destruction upon the village.
Keiichi later wakes to learn that all of Hinamizawa's inhabitants perished from toxic gases released from Onigafuchi Swamp. When interviewed by a tabloid journalist, Keiichi describes in scary detail what kind of man he has become and what kind of powers he has, before wishing the journalist dead and dying shortly thereafter.
- Episode One: Older Brother
- Episode Two: Bond
- Episode Three: Boundary
- Episode Four: Lost Things
- Episode Five: Apology
Disappearances and Deaths
All deaths and disappearances are listed only as they are told in Tatarigoroshi-hen. Spoilers are only for the individual arc, not the overall series.
- Hōjō Satoshi: went missing June 24, 1982 after the Watanagashi festival.
- Ōishi Kuraudo: went missing June 20, 1983 during an investigation.
- Kumagai Katsuya: also went missing June 20, 1983 during an investigation.
- Hōjō Satoko: went missing June 22, 1983 in the Great Hinamizawa Disaster.
- Around twenty Hinamizawa residents: went missing June 21-22, 1983 in the Great Hinamizawa Disaster.
- Hōjō Tamae: murdered June 20, 1982 on the night of the Watanagashi Festival by Satoshi.
- Mamiya Rina: killed by Sonozakis, Watanagashi style, some time before the story. Her body was found in a drainage system in Shishibone. Her nose and ears were cut off, one nail was driven through each of her finger joints, and her belly was slit open.
- Hōjō Teppei: beaten to death June 19, 1983 with a baseball bat by Keiichi while he was heading to the Okinomiya police station.
- Tomitake Jirō: died of blood loss after clawing out his own throat June 19, 1983 on the night of the Watanagashi.
- Takano Miyo: hanged June 19, 1983 in the mountains of the Gifu Prefecture. Her corpse was burned in an oil drum.
- Irie Kyōsuke: committed suicide June 21, 1983 with sleeping pills in the clinic.
- Furude Rika: found disemboweled June 21, 1983 in front of the Furude shrine.
- Everyone in Hinamizawa not listed otherwise: died June 21-22 1983 of gas poisoning during GHD.
- Chie Rumiko: died June 22, 1983 in an accident during the evacuation after the GHD, according to the sound novel and manga adaptations.
- Kōichi Kameda: also died June 22, 1983 in an accident during the evacuation after the GHD, according to the sound novel and manga adaptations.
- Kasai Tatsuyoshi: died August 11, 1983 in the hospital where he was admitted, according to the sound novel and the manga adaption.
- Sonozaki Shion: killed herself August 27, 1983 in the hospital where she was admitted, according to the sound novel and manga adaptions.
- Maebara Keiichi: died November 30, 1983 of a high fever of unknown cause in the hospital he was admitted to, according to the sound novel and manga adaptions. According to the anime adaption, however, Keiichi was the sole survivor and was expected to survive, however this was only stated upon his retrieval from the Disaster, and does not necessarily refute his death on November 30th.
- Some people who used to live in Hinamizawa: started showing erratic behavior right after GHD. Some died mysteriously in hospitals, while others started dying in other strange ways.
- Arakawa Ryūichi: died 1995 in an accident at sea. In the summer of 2003, his parents living in Osaka Prefecture discover his infamous interview with Maebara Keiichi, in which his manner of death is "predicted" by the interviewee.
- Because Higurashi gained most of its popularity right before Himatsubushi's release, the original disks for Tatarigoroshi and all previous arcs are hard to find, and therefore very expensive.
- In the Sound Novel, Keiichi calls Mion before the festival to ask her to take Satoko to it. Over the phone, Mion behaves different to Keiichi. She initially does not want to take Satoko then suddenly rants about how she had promised to take care of her. She asks Keiichi if he is Satoshi and then repeatedly addresses him as "Satoshi" despite Keiichi's corrections. In retrospect, Keiichi was talking to Shion playing Mion.
- Being in Two Places at Once: It is not clear in the anime why Mion and Rena claim that Keiichi was at the Watanagashi Festival during the time he killed Teppei. The Sound Novel suggests that Rena and Mion cover for Keiichi's absence. He lies that he cannot remember since he drank "a lot of beer," and Rena tries to fill in the details. When she becomes nervous, Mion takes over. However, later Satoko angrily claims that the only one having "fun" at the Festival was him. She makes clear she left before Keiichi apparently met Mion, Rena, and Rika at the Saiguden, but she also makes it clear that her uncle abused her that morning! And Keiichi hears an extra step. . . .
There is an epilogue that was absent from the anime adaptation. It features an interview with a mentally disturbed Keiichi, just days before his death. In the interview, Keiichi makes one final curse against the interviewer himself.
The frog in the well was happy.
The frog in the well was happy.
And you were happy, too.
|Higurashi no Naku Koro ni||Onikakushi-hen • Watanagashi-hen • Tatarigoroshi-hen • Himatsubushi-hen|
|Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai||Yakusamashi-hen • Minagoroshi-hen • Matsuribayashi-hen|
|Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Rei||Hajisarashi-hen • Saikoroshi-hen • Hirukowashi-hen|
|Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kira||Batsukoishi-hen • Ayakashisenshi-hen • Musubienishi-hen • Yumeutsushi-hen|
|Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kaku||Higurashi Outbreak|
|Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Gō||Onidamashi-hen • Watadamashi-hen • Tataridamashi-hen • Nekodamashi-hen • Satokowashi-hen|