Adventure Episode 37: Wizardmon's Gift

In this episode, two Digimon take forever to die. One gets time for a heroic send-off. The other is apparently an RPG final boss and has a second form to chew more gameplay hours.

I'm beginning to see an unfortunate trend in season one. It doesn't carry over to other seasons much and is responsible for some inspiring moments in subsequent episodes, but it deserves reprimand nonetheless. Sometimes an arc doesn't know when to end and sometimes the bad guys just need to stay the hell dead.

For the sake of this argument, let's call Apocalymon an extension of the Dark Masters. We're not calling that two-episode post-script at the end an arc, are we? With that in mind, none of the major villains in season one die the first time around. Devimon has a bit part in season two. Etemon not only returns from the brink in his arc, but will also butt in again later. As the king cockroach, Myotismon is the worst offender, while Apocalymon just seemed to be tacked on as an excuse to buy a couple more episodes and a more rounded conclusion to the series. Why don't they just go away?

This is a more appropriate conversation to be having next episode when the guy actually returns, but what triggers this thought is how quick and anti-climactic Myotismon's death was in this episode. After brushing off all the initial foreplay, Myotismon ends up going down in one hit. It was a beautiful hit from the newly evolved Angewomon and the sequence leading up to her arrival is among the best in the franchise, but come on! All that and he's dead after one shot? No wonder nobody believes it.

The simple solution would have been knocking him off the roof with the hit, but having him somehow survive to advance to his final form. That would lead us into the epic 1.5-episode final battle (culminating in the dramatic warp evolution/yaoi fuel that lies ahead). Don't even pretend that Myotismon actually died here. You couldn't fool us with the eighth child mystery and you aren't fooling us here.

The other death in this episode had a far bigger impact. On the way to Odaiba, Joe and TK are finally able to contribute as they rescue Wizardmon and Kari's crest. Wizardmon proves his allegiance to all the cynics when he heals Lillymon (conveniently getting her back to game strength without having to devolve). As everybody comes together, the battle begins... and Myotismon's in God Mode. He's shrugging off blows that used to at least hurt him and making up shielding and misdirection moves as he goes along. Myotismon doesn't really feel anything until Wizardmon drills him in the back. It's a shock then that Myotismon would turn his back on Angemon for his surprise attack on Kari and Gatomon... leading to the big moment. The already injured Wizardmon leaps in front of the attack and the world stops. Or at least it would if the dub would have been smart enough to turn down the music for that scene. A moment of silence from the orchestra would have been appreciated.

It still felt like we needed more than two episodes to fully appreciate Wizardmon's story, but it ends exactly how it needs to. He sees a narrow window to finally make Gatomon's life bearable and charges at it with no concern for the consequences. Future heroic sacrifices tend to be for the sake of the Digital World, keeping the digidestined alive to continue the fight. Wizardmon's is special because his intentions aren't that grandiose. For him, it's not about saving the world or stopping Myotismon. His actions are driven only by his desire to help out a friend. After seeing how miserable Gatomon's life had been and what it would mean to bring her and Kari together, he throws himself at any obstacle that stands in their way. To him, it has nothing to do with saving the world and everything to do with making Gatomon happy. To die for that alone means so much more than any other sacrifice we'll encounter.

My Grade: A-

Loose Data:
  • I previously asked when Demidevimon gained the ability to put a convention center's worth of people to sleep. Now I ask when the crests gave digidestined like Mimi the power to wake up from that.
  • When Wizardmon explains that Kari is the eighth child (and Joe somehow remembers that Tai's sister is named Kari), TK complains about being the last to know. He's actually not. Ironically, the last one to gain this knowledge is actually Izzy, Mr. Crest of Knowledge himself.
  • Kari has the most incredible hands. Not only does she catch the tag from Wizardmon, but she also catches the digivice Tai throws her from another rooftop... twice!
  • Phantomon, a major player in the invasion and a significant thorn in everyone's sides, is blinked out completely after a partial hit primarily directed at Myotismon.
  • It's a pretty awesome sight to see two angel Digimon judging Myotismon and asking him to repent... but did they really expect him to be sorry about all this? He is a virus type, after all. Sorta his nature.

8 comments:

  1. I'm actually suprised that Angemon's attack not only killed phantomon in one shot after a partial hit but did Myotismon some damage (he looked like he was in pain) when he's only at the champion level while the ultimates couldn't do anything... Shows how awsome he is!!
    and yes it was super cool to have two angles asking the big bad vampire to repent

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    1. Yeah, that was kind of the biggest takeaway. Phantomon was essentially Myotismon's right-hand man, or at the very least the most powerful of his minions (DemiDevimon and Gatomon pre-Heel Face Turn filled the storyline role of #2, but Phantomon was the strongest), and Angemon, a Champion, ends up killing him with an attack that was actually aimed at his boss. There's a reason that Angemon shows up so rarely, and that's that he's way overpowered compared to others of his evolutionary stage. Nothing short of the biggest threat of the season has ever been able to draw out even his Ultimate form (Piedmon and BlackWarGreymon)

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    2. We actually see Phantomon carrying Myotismon's carriage in episode 26, so he was his Number 2 guy even back then.

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  2. It seemed like Myotismon was gaining back the power he had in the digital world the longer he was in the real world. I like to think that his magical fog bank blocked out the Sun and gave him an additional advantage. That's why the angel digimon (and wizardmon?) were much more effective: their light-based attacks were super effective. That also explains why Myotismon was so afraid of Kari's crest of light, but why didn't he just kill Gatomon when he had the chance?

    Also, since when did Wizardmon have the real crest? The dub said the one behind the pillow was a fake. Silly dub.

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    1. Err I thought Wirzardmon said he sntached it before he fell into the water XD

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  3. All the times Myotismon gets interrupted right before killin Kairi, seriously there should be a trope for that.

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  4. What can be said about this one? It's one of the series' finest half hours, with much to take in. The climactic episode to the Odaiba arc is the payoff to the entire eighth child premise that we've been going with for 10 episodes now. Wizardmon, Gatomon, and Kari all played their ultimate roles here, all the Digi-Destined reunited once Tai and Mimi got up to that rooftop battle, Myotismon was deliciously evil, the animation and action was phenomenal by this series' standards, and the culmination was just perfect. So I'll just address some individual points:

    Myotismon putting everyone at the Center to sleep so that he could "save them for later" is creepy on so many levels. One suspects he was already planning on evolving to VenomMyotismon in order to devour all the humans even before he happened to get killed and become truly undead.

    Hiroaki Ishida must consider it his greatest failure that he let Wizardmon go up the stairs. Imagine how he must have felt upon seeing that Wizardmon never made it back...

    "I've got you, my pretty, and your little cat too!" Yeesh, that was cheesy. Why make Myotismon reference a movie he obviously hasn't even seen? The following moment was great though, with Myotismon's way of getting Gatomon to identify the child by name being very clever.

    Fans complain about how freakishly strong Myotismon got in these episodes, but I thought it was clear that the effects of the fog (which in the original were described as a way to "turn this world into the underworld") allowed him to go around in the daytime, use a new attack to paralyze his enemies, and dissolve coming attacks. The only thing that could truly effect him is light power, shown with how Wizardmon hits him from behind with a light blast, Angemon's attack hits him and makes his shiver in agony, and Angewoman's attacks end up working on him. The point is that it wasn't a natural thing - hence why Matt says, in both versions, "He's strong. TOO strong."

    Notice how when Myotismon says "GRISLY WING!" when preparing to kill Kari, he does the pose for Nightmare Claw, and then later says "NIGHTMARE -" while clearly preparing a Grisly Wing attack? Yeah, total dub error.

    I love all the times Myotismon gets blindsided or interrupted before he can attack. Also hilarious is the fact that Phantomon just gets killed by an attack directed at Myotismon, with absolutely no fanfare or anyone noting that it even happened.

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    1. Wizardmon's death scene was handled very well in the dub, with a really great musical score for this moment, accurately translated dialogue, and great voice acting, especially Robert Axelrod. But what's funny is that the start and finish of the scene got botched. They recycle footage of Wizardmon about to throw the crest to Kari in order to create the illusion that Wizardmon's getting back up in order to jump in front of Myotismon's attack, when in the original it just totally blindsides the audience when Wizardmon gets hit. And they cut out the part where Wizardmon closes his eyes and passes away, Kari cries out in anguish and her crest glows, prompting the Digivice to act up from within DemiDevimon's claws. In the dub, we don't see the crest glow, so the Digivice shines for no real reason.

      In the original, Myotismon makes his goal even clearer by saying it's his destiny to "fuse the real world with the Digital World" and then rule over his new world of darkness. A truly depraved goal for a truly depraved monster.

      I honestly did not care how quick or anticlimactic is was - I loved seeing Angewoman, the evolution of the Digimon whom Myotismon had abused repeatedly, shoot an arrow through the bastard's heart and him seemingly dying from combustion. It was so karmic and cathartic. You have no idea how much I just hated Myotismon by this point and how happy I was to see him finally be given exactly what he deserved for his heinous crimes against Digimon and humans alike. That's how you know you've written a great, effective villain.

      As for why Myotismon can't just stay dead now? If you haven't noticed, each arc is 13 episodes long. We have two more episodes of the Odaiba arc to go, so something big still has to happen in order to cap it all off in a fully satisfactory manner, which I think the next two episodes delivered. And you got Apocalymon all wrong - no, the last two episodes aren't an arc, they're the series finale, and Apocalymon wasn't just an extension of the Dark Masters, he was both the cause and culmination of all the evil faced in the series. He was the source of the series' entire plot from the very beginning, which is made clearer in the original version what with all the talk of distortions in the Digital World. So to call him tacked on just for extra episodes in order to close out the series is false.

      Finally, after a dub script that mostly got it all right aside from Myotismon's attack issues, the ending got ruined by replacing eerie suspense over the fog still lingering with Joe theorizing "What if Myotismon didn't die? What if we just made him stronger?" Way to ruin the surprise there, Joe!

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