Well now, things are certainly coming to a head. While the pace was not quite as breakneck as the last episode, we continue right where we left off and intensifies each of the assorted plotlines. Everything culminates with several small victories followed by a devastating blow. Also- Izzy's back.
The slightly slower pace is nice as we get some good scenes at the undisclosed location where Kari is hiding. The frustration is mounting as Tai and Matt know they have to keep her safe at all costs, but also need to do something about this whole “evil Digimon terrorizing everybody in the district” thing. Tai eventually goes off in search of his parents, sticking Matt with guard duty. As Kari begins to question whether this is her fault and if Tai can really do anything, Matt's responses really suck.
It's not readily apparent because it doesn't involve punching Tai, but the scene taps into Matt's recurring problem of trying to be a team player and not knowing how. He accepts Tai's orders, only to later realize that he had just taken responsibility for not only guarding the eighth child, but to take care of Tai's little sister and keep her spirits up. Deep down, Matt's never had the fullest confidence in Tai and he struggles to be optimistic, which upsets Kari greatly.
Izzy is getting orders from Gennai and receives a sweet app that makes humans in the surrounding area invisible to Digimon. All the drama from episode 31 comes to a head in a very brisk scene, as Yoshie demands that they evacuate as Izzy downloads the digital barrier. It takes an intervention from Dad to let Izzy finish working, ultimately saving them all when the Bakemon float right past them untouched. Shame Tentomon gave himself away in the process.
As Izzy gets his marching orders, his parents finally seem to understand and let him go. Yoshie gives what seems to be a pretty generic mom speech... until you remember all the underlying issues with this. With his back turned, Izzy has this really amazing look where he'd clearly be frustrated about her continuing to withhold the truth if he weren't so choked up by her words. He covers it nicely. Then he goes to the TV station and gets kidnapped by Hiroaki. Apparently Matt's dad is too awesome to simply tap allies on the shoulder. He's busting out the chloroform.
Despite all that, it ends up being Joe's big moment. The ferry station outside Odaiba is ready to riot due to the suspension of service and TK is separated from his mother. He finds Joe and it suddenly dawns on them that they have an aquatic Digimon that has provided reliable water transportation on multiple occasions. As the HMS Ikkakumon lifts off, TK's mom finally arrives and wants her son back. In this moment of mother/son separation, TK is, quite frankly, a bit of an asshole here, cracking jokes as his mother is nearly distraught at the sight of her little baby being carried into the fog by a big hairy walrus. Alone on the dock, she says “I've lost all of them” and that should make TK feel downright horrible.
Megaseadramon attacks during their voyage, sending both boys into Tokyo Bay. Joe makes sure TK is safe before succumbing to the water himself, proving his reliability and leading to what is the best, cleanest and least sappy Ultimate debut in the season as Zudomon arrives to save Joe in turn. It's a great payoff after such an elaborate set-up.
Back at the undisclosed location, Sora finds Matt, but so does Phantomon, who summons two toughs to rough them up. Garurumon and Birdramon struggle, but the real pain comes as Phantomon directly attacks Matt, swatting away Sora when she attempts a rescue. It's always when the kids themselves are in physical danger that the real drama becomes apparent. With everybody on her side hurting, Kari has had enough, and willingly gives herself up to save them. All that... and the mission appears doomed.
My Grade: A
- Thank you for the repeated clock shots. With multiple things happening at once, it's nice to have a frame of reference (and to know that this is all happening at 7:30 in the morning).
- When did DemiDevimon gain the ability to put an entire convention center's worth of people to sleep?
- One note about the convention center I forgot last time- the Tokyo Big Sight convention center where everybody is being held is a real place and featured prominently in just about any anime starring otaku of any kind. Comic Party and Genshiken are two popular examples.
- During his brief rendezvous with Sora, Tai tells her to “go hook up with Matt.” He probably didn't mean that literally.
- Somewhere in here is a completely random scene of Hiroaki angry and disheveled at his office. This is truly a man itching to go kick ass.