「絶賛、決戦中です!」 (Zessan , Kessen Naka Desu !)
“The Acclaimed Battle Continues!”
Now this was a battle. It didn’t exactly have the tactical depth of last week, but for stunning displays of power and stirring shows of determination, this one was hard to beat. I think it’s because – and I’ve said this before, but I’m going to say it again because I don’t know when to shut up – the protagonists can actually lose. This was a battle where our heroes can get completely taken out of the fight without everyone having to scramble for a Scroll of Resurrection, and that brings up all sorts of interesting possibilities. This episode certainly showed us that, are competitors on both side were retired one after another, making the tactical landscape precarious to say the least.
Now, uncharacteristically for this show, all my favorite things this episode were about guys. The first one was Kiba-kun. When he first whipped out his special sword (don’t think about that statement too much) back in episode 4, I assumed it, Holy Eraser, was his only one. The fact that he can create any sword he wants to suit a particular battle is waaay better. But more than that, it’s how many swords he can summon that is so awesome. Seeing that, I had the same reaction that I’m sure many of your did: “Kiba-kun can use Unlimited Blade Works!?” Niiiice.
My next favorite thing was Issei. Not only did he beat one of Raizer’s rooks without too much trouble – and with the obligatory Dress Break, naturally – but he took on six enemies and actually won. Boosted Gear is a thoroughly ridiculous weapon, and its new power up has only made it more so. When I saw what Issei could do with it, I was forced to revise my earlier reaction: “Kiba-kun doesn’t have Unlimited Blade Works…Issei does!” Even more awesome!
My third favorite thing about this episode was Issei again. His determination to keep getting up and fight for Rias was impressive. I know most of us like to think that we would do the same thing in a similar situation, but I know from personal experience that a mild case of the flu or an especially impressive hangover is enough to keep me curled up in bed and moaning for an entire day minimum. For Issei to get up and try to fight even when he’s coughing up blood is one of the reasons why girls like Rias keep falling for him, and it’s why he deserves it.
But the biggest shocker of this episode was definitely that Rias’ team lost. I know earlier I said that the rating games are interesting because the protagonists can lose, but I only expected them to lose the individual fights. For them to lose the entire thing was a surprise, even if Raizer’s overpowered regenerative powers made victory logically a long shot. Now it appears that Rias is set to marry Raizer after all. With only one more episode to go, Issei and the gang are going to have to stop that wedding somehow…but fortunately, Koneko-chan says that there’s still a way. Fight on, Issei!
tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Kiba-kun & Issei stole the show w/ UBW rip-offs. Next week, Rias back in a wedding dress!? Oh noes! #HighSchoolDxD
- In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve stopped referring to Rias as Rias-sempai. Why? Because once she made this face for Issei, I feel the distance between them shrunk. Probably a good time to switch to a first name basis.
- Minor gripe: the ED. It’s still amazing, but hearing the super chipper ED play right after a dramatic scene completely poisoned the mood. Remember this, anime studios: no matter how awesome your OP or ED is, if they don’t fit the mood of the nearby scene(s), don’t play them! Make sure you write that down. It will be on your next test.
- I’d like to say they’re going to sell soooo many DVDs, but everything is already uncensored, so maybe not? I’m not sure whether the perv demographic will come out and buy the cow when they’ve already seen the milk for free. I want a season 2 though, so let’s hope!