「クリスマスはお好き?」 (Christmas wa Osuki?)
“Do You Like Christmas?”
Dumbbell joins the long list of anime that bring Christmas joy to even the hottest times of the year. With the amount of effort that Akemi puts into going on a date with Macchio, the season is looking to get even hotter from here. But will anything come from this possible pairing or are there ulterior motives for Akemi wanting to take him to Tokyo Destinyland? These questions are still slightly up in the air for this episode of Dumbbell.
What made the episode exciting for me was how it added an extra layer to Akemi’s personal attachment to Macchio. Since Christmas is a holiday of celebrating love and romance, it pushes Akemi to reflect further on how she wants to get an opportunity to see a side of Macchio that she wouldn’t otherwise see if she were with her friends. In fact, her dream guy mirrors Macchio in his mutual love for muscles and the word “bulk”. As they get further through their date, it almost seems as if there is some genuine chemistry with how happy they are to spend time together. For Akemi though, snagging the theme park tickets from Satomi did give her a chance to see the muscles that she always loved in a new setting. From what we learn when Akemi snaps, Macchio’s cosplay at Destinyland is appealing to her because it gives her a new way of staring longingly at his muscles. Whether she’s willing to pursue a relationship with him in the future or merely use his physique to satiate her muscle fetish is still speculative, but it did spice things up to see Akemi be more reflective in focusing more on Macchio than the other guys around her for the Christmas party.
As far as exercises go, it mainly focused on bench-pressing exercises that focus on the biceps and upper chest area. The biceps, in particular, got the most attention with Skull Crushers (that accidentally crushed Hibiki’s skull) and the flexing techniques that were displayed when Macchio tore his clothes off with his flexing. The final movement was a reiteration of the posing that was featured in the last episode. And although these segments were relatively short, Dumbbell makes up for it with its humorous take on Christmas celebrations and Tokyo Disney. To be specific, Satomi really stole the show in the last segment as she snuck around Destinyland wearing a school uniform to blend in only to be caught by Aina, who had the same idea about wearing a school uniform. It’s just nice to see all of the characters come together in Dumbbell as you can tell that they all have great chemistry with one another, and it’s a pleasant surprise that a show with such a cast can do the impossible of making sure that each of them is able to synergize perfectly with one another. It comes out especially in this episode as we see the girls bond over their pursuit of romance at the Christmas party and their mutual interest in spying on Akemi and Macchio as they make their way around the park. It helps solidify Dumbbell as one of this season’s top comedies, without a doubt.