It’s hard to say if we’re supposed to feel shocked by anything that happens here. It’s no surprise the fun outing turns out to be a trap. Rei’s role is as straightforward as it gets: he plots to steal Haru’s Seven Codes, and then he steals Haru’s Seven Codes. Raidramon beating down the three Supers is gruesomely one-sided, but he’s not the first monster we’ve met via introductory curbstomp. Remember Tailmon’s first fight? There’s a lot made of Rei realizing his Super rather than using App Fusion but… really? Maybe the only real shock here is something meaningful actually happened. It’s just hard to hand out rewards for that alone.
Once again, the build up to the action is more enjoyable than the action itself. Digimon teams have a long, proud history of falling into very transparent traps, especially when there are lavish food spreads to eat and warm water to dip into. Never has the process of falling into one been such a treat. Eri compares the invite to a girls meetup, which sounds ridiculous… so naturally Ropuremon confirms that it’ll be exactly like a girls meetup, sweets and gossip and karaoke and all. Rei even admits that was the vibe he was going for because Rei is really just a socially awkward dork.
Mailmon is equally awkward masking his intentions and so bad at carrying them out that everyone dismisses him as an inept host rather than an inept accomplice. We should be chiding the kids for sticking around after the pit trap backfires, but it’s hot and there’s a pool. At least Gatchmon is suspicious. Refreshingly (and appropriate given his basis), he seems to be the sharpest of the bunch, which never happens with the main character’s partner. As dumb as everyone looks playing right into Rei’s hands, Rei was probably ready to make his showy entrance the moment they decided to leave so it really didn’t matter.
Rei’s proper introduction would have more devastating impact if it weren’t for the reality of his situation. On the surface, sure Rei looks awfully suspicious pulling the kids into a trap, having an advantage in realizing Raidramon, watching him tear through three Appmon, and rip two invaluable Seven Code Appmon out of Gatchmon’s care. With no critical thinking skills, you’d say he’s Leviathan’s puppet. But each of those have such obvious holes that we wonder to what degree we’re actually supposed to believe this.
The trap itself only works once Rei gives up on the pretense. He clearly put more thought into actually throwing an entertaining party than how he was going to use it to steal the Seven Codes. The shock of him fusing Hackmon with an inactive chip would have worked had the kids done anything more with their chips than quietly pocket them. The surprise is lost on us, its significance gone the moment Haru inevitably learns how to do it. Raidramon has no trouble fending off three Supers at once, but shows no interest in finishing off Leviathan’s biggest threats. Everything in the climax, even Haru’s wonderful emotional plea, is crafted to point to vague intentions, yet they make it clear Rei isn’t really working for Leviathan.
The episode succeeds at easing our transition away from the fun introductions to the first serious mini-arc of the series. It’s the first time we see Dogatchmon, Dosukomon, and Mediamon on the field together, and the beatdown they receive at the end is their requisite reality check of the power they’ll have to overcome. Mienumon and her goon squad still have their eyes on the trio after all. And even if Rei isn’t working for them, there’s still the question of why he’s presenting himself as such a menace when Haru will cooperate with literally anyone that sounds sincere. The answer… still comes back to Rei being a socially awkward dork.
My Grade: C+
- L Burger… yet another L-based conglomerate in town. This is either going to be a massive wham moment or make the kids look like blind idiots.
- For all the goofy implications of individual apps going haywire, Haru breaks down the reality of the entire internet revolting on humanity. It’s a concept with a staggering amount of possibilities, and the hope they get scratched even a little bit makes the show’s early stumbles totally worth enduring.
- I’ve never been to a girls meetup, but it seems one of the hallmarks would be that it’s all girls. Despite neither being nor owning Seven Code Appmon, Eri and Tora see no issue inviting themselves and Mailmon has no problem with seating them.
- Despite Mailmon’s extensive plotting to remove Gatchmon’s helmet, at no point in the series do we discover whether his helmet is actually removable.
- Love how everyone’s not that angry at the party being an elaborate ruse, but that the elaborate ruse was way more entertaining a party than an elaborate ruse has any right to be.
- It’s worth acknowledging that the time Gomimon and Ropuremon spent getting dolled up was absolutely worth it because they looked fantastic right before Rei captured them. Digging the giant bowties, boys.