In this episode, IP tracing is insanely effective in the Digital World, but so is blowing everything up. Also, the heartbreaking flashback to rule them all!
“I'm sorry I can't kick the ball very good.”
And just like that, Kari Kamiya has invented the genre of moe.
The only thing more incredible than the emotional impact of this flashback is that the one with Ken's brother in season two might top it. The dark tint of the flashback captures the moment perfectly, and accentuates stuff like the slap mark from Tai's mom. It's bad enough that Then Tai's selfish act almost kills Kari, but her guilt just breaks you.
Sure as hell broke Tai. Until this point, he's generally taken a “Don't Be Matt” policy regarding the youngins. Take care of them, definitely, but don't freak out when they're exposed to a little danger. Since Matt's departure, Tai's shown this attitude around TK mostly, pushing back a little when TK suggests something bold like invading Puppetmon's house, but not so far as to put his foot down. Kari, who missed the first half of the show and isn't used to this whole “wandering aimlessly in the desert” thing, collapses with a high fever. Tai loses it, going so far as to suggest that, digidestined or not, she shouldn't have come along.
Kabuterimon leads them all to a strange composite of major cities around the world and they find a safehouse. In need of medicine, Tai is able to convince TK to stay with Sora and Kari, but only after telling him that he's the primary line of defense. Out in the field in search of a pharmacy, Izzy logs on and hits up Mapquest to find the dopest route. Little do they know that Machinedramon is using these access points to track their location and activity. It's quite ingenious, actually.
Machinedramon is certainly under-appreciated. He only gets a couple episodes, and isn't fortunate enough to go first like MetalSeadramon, last like Piedmon or forever like Puppetmon. His problem, it would seem, is cold competency. He doesn't screw around. When he sees them looking up pharmacy locations, he directs his minions to attack all of them. When Izzy logs on from the pharmacy to find the right fever medicine, Machinedramon sends all his minions there. When Tai and Izzy figure out his game and somehow escape, he orders Megadramon and Gigadramon to level the whole damn city. He's everything a villain should be, but there's no flair in running such a tight operation.
When Izzy realizes his mistake, he's angry at himself for falling for such a trap. Tai's even angrier and lashes out, upset that his efforts to return to Kari are being derailed. He gets a bit hysterical and delivers the flashback, silencing Izzy and leading him to log on again to overload Machinedramon's system. They use this cover to reach the safehouse, only to see it blow'd up and a missile heading their way. Turns out TK and Angemon were the primary line of defense after all, as they totally save Tai's life.
At least until Machinedramon shows up himself and levels the building they all ran into. After a sadist like Puppetmon, this kind of efficiency is practically unfair.
My Grade: A
- As much as TK has been trying to act all grown up lately, he has this look of absolute horror when Kari collapses. This has to be a sobering moment for him.
- When seeing all the world landmarks in one city, “that theme park in Florida” is invoked to avoid a direct reference to a Disney property. Years later, Disney gained the rights to air Digimon.
- Back when payphones existed, did they really have internet access jacks? Was that the 90's equivalent of using your cell phone to browse the internet?
- When Izzy sees all the bad guys converging on them, he shouts “inconceivable!” I know he's flustered, but he should know that his catch phrase is “prodigious.” “Inconceivable” belongs to someone else.
- Tai and Izzy end up hiding in Notre Dame cathedral... which apparently has an access point too.