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Kanji 男道
Rōmaji Otokomichi
Japanese Airdate Febuary 23, 2004
English Airdate June 19, 2005

"A Man's Path" is the fourth episode of Paranoia Agent.


Masami Hirukawa is a portly low-level police officer who, despite calling himself a family man, accepts bribes in the form of cash and women (in fact, his favorite prostitute is Maria/Harumi, the protagonist from the previous episode) from a local Yakuza group. Masami even purchases a house for his family using this money. However, Masami falls behind in his payments, and the Yakuzas send one of their men, Makabe, to reclaim the "stolen" funds. Masami manages to get the "loan" extended, but has to pay an extremely large amount of interest. Desperate, Masami dons dark clothes and a ski mask and starts robbing the helpless. He even develops a drug habit to deal with the stress. As he walks alone on a deserted road at night, he cries for help, for someone to "stop him." Suddenly, he is attacked by Lil' Slugger; however, unlike the other victims, he is not incapacitated, and instead gives chase to Lil' Slugger. Masami then arrests Lil' Slugger, who awaits to be questioned by Ikari and Maniwa.

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