「怪人の蜂起」 (Kaijin no Houki)
“The Uprising of the Monsters”
You wanted some martial arts? Well darling you’re going to get some, erm, quasi-martial arts. Yeah, martial arts—in spirit. Not that OPM’s focus was ever going to be the intricacies of screamed move names and multi-episode buildup leading to an always less than satisfactory conclusion mind you (praise be to the DBZ strategy), but hey, hard faulting the show for hilariously ripping into those time honoured tropes. In this season it’s all about watching things get beat up, and oh boy did we get that this week.
While there’s some annoyance over the time allotment OPM is doling out to its titular character so far, there’s no denying the moments spent watching poor suckers wind up KO’d is plenty satisfying for what’s being shown. It’s blatantly obvious for example that Saitama is going to win this tournament outright thanks to the competition coming his way (barring any unforeseen shenanigans—i.e. what happens should he lose the wig of deception), so the question becomes what are we going to get out the inevitability, and Suiryu pretty much provides that answer in spades. The guy for intents and purpose is the alternate King: he’s got all the power and talent, but has no wish to use it for anything outside himself. Helping people and bettering society? Suiryu considers it a sucker’s bet, and something only fit for those unwilling—or unable—to take for themselves. Or in other words, the mindset of a thoroughly arrogant bastard. Given Saitama’s view on heroes and their societal obligations it’s going to be interesting seeing what happens when he finally runs up against Suiryu, because while the guy may technically not be a hero, he falls into the same general category. With power comes responsibility, and there’s no better teacher of the fact than the One Punch Man himself.
Getting to that teachable moment however will first take some work thanks to face of this arc’s main opponent in Orochi finally appearing and hinting towards fun things (read: disaster) happening soon. Not much of a stretch for example to imagine some serious fights building on the horizon thanks three S-class heroes being wiped in the opening encounter, and with Garo ready to help thin the herd a little more because you know this bad boy is also not going anywhere anytime soon. Not like everyone’s favourite pint sized pipsqueak is going to run into any problems with the latest wave of horror-esque riffraff (you’ll be seeing that face in your nightmares, I guarantee it), but hey, no reason we cannot have a little fun before beating evil into an unrecognizable pulp. Or, you know, incinerating it to a crisp. Yeah, I think our batch of heroes is going to do just fine.
After all with the caped baldy still doing the usual, it’s only a matter of time before this batch of enemies meets their maker.