「決戦の地へ」 (Kessen no Chi e)
“To the Final Battleground”
I’m not a manga reader. Not for this series, at any rate. So I can’t say for certain, but. Doesn’t this seem rather fast? Maybe that’s how it was in the source material. It’d be smart if so, to be honest; none of the intervening events probably needed to be elucidated, at least not until after the fact. But there was also some serious rush on in this episode. Or maybe that was the beers I had before getting home to watch it, who can say. Life is a mystery, and then we shokugeki.
My MVP for this episode is undoubtedly Alice. Others were good! Especially Isshiki! More on him soon. But Alice is the hero the other students needed right here. She threw the necessary tantrum, she marched everyone to the stadium, she is the one who made sure her friends and her cousin had their support crew on hand. Hisako wasn’t going to do it, no one else was going to do it, but Alice did. Good on her! We all need an Alice in our lives, sometimes.
Souma pulling Soba was great! A great laugh line, but also an opportunity to show his philosophy off in real time. To be honest, this entire first round seems like it’s all set up for the protagonists to win: The ousted Elite Ten members prove their mettle, and Yukihira surmounts impossible odds in a very Souma way. It’s the people who come next that will have troubles, I’d guess—strong competitors fail, current (named) Elite Ten members run amok, things get dire. I could be wrong! The show certainly seems to be setting Isshiki-sempai, at least, up for a victory. He’s always been silly in a super funny and awesome way, the kind of silly you can only be when you’re that damn good. I look forward to him showing further just how good he is. Crush this boring blondie, Isshiki-sempai. Do it for Polar Star!
As for Souma, him inflecting himself into the dish, and making one that really represents who he is, is the right tack to take. He doesn’t know how to make soba as well as Nene; if he fights her in her realm, he will lose. He knows how to be Souma better than anyway else, though. If he cooks soba like Souma, better than he ever has before… Maybe. Maybe he can pull that off. If anyone can, it’d be him, certainly!
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