Oh thank God, Mimi’s back. If ever there was a demand for utter nonsense, it would be in this series. And don’t be fooled by the parable about business ethics: this is utter nonsense. Nothing is accomplished, there are no new evolutions, and it’s a premise we’ve seen a million times before in Digimon. Mimi carries it on her back solo. The fact that she’s successful at making all of this so fun and such a refreshing break from the usual intensity reminds us what kind of personality she brings to the table when the show decides to focus on her. It also reminds us that the show has deliberately denied us this girl for most of the last twenty episodes.
The old “weary Digimon enslaved by big bully” yarn is featured almost every season. Removing incidents where divine entities possess eight year olds, they’re generally mediocre. This one is too, redeemed only by the massive size of Mimi’s personality. Despite the dull premise, when her adventures involve winning over a foe thanks to The Marcus Code you’re already on better footing than anything Taichi’s done this whole time. It’s a good tone to set, though, having to win over Gotsumon and Golemon instead of showing up as an instant savior. Also nice is that while she is clearly passionate about helping them, she also still has eyes on all those pretty gems.
While Mimi’s antics are entertaining as all hell, especially compared to what we’ve been getting, that jarring disparity is troubling. When she’s given the space to demonstrate it, her personality is louder than anyone else’s, creating this imbalance where we’re waiting for the next Mimi episode for anything fun to happen. Her character is upfront and easy to figure out, making her more in line with the cast of Savers. She’d compete there better than Yoshino did. And Yoshino’s eye rolling and sympathetic complaining would be a perspective we could appreciate in this series! I’m up for a swap!
There’s also still a serious lack of depth within her. As much fun as she is, there’s only so much value in her being an outspoken advocate of corporate ethics, pretty things, and enjoying her experience. Especially if most of her appearances are solely dedicated to emphasizing one or more of those three. Unless you were actually worried she’d prioritize a diamond over Lilimon’s safety, nothing here tests her values or forces her to explore herself or her partnership with Palmon. It’s just a spontaneous instance of Mimi being awesome. And while we needed this bit of fresh air, it’s neither the kind of episode that can sustain a whole series, nor any indication that the show won’t be right back to its frustrating patterns after Yamato and Joe get their turns next time.
My Grade: B
- There are other examples of the characters being wedged into specific traits. After Taichi heads off to fetch food, an errand that would have minimal risk to anyone besides Taichi, Tailmon swears to protect Hikari with her life. Which is not only already presumed, but a weird thing to say when she’s really just babysitting.
- Sora responding to Taichi and Agumon stranded in the water by instinctively getting herself into the same predicament seems to be squeezing her into that “girl determined to keep protagonist alive despite himself” role. Also, the way she reacted suggests this is not the first time this has happened to Taichi.
- Mimi does confirm that it has indeed been days since they were all separated. It’s evident from Taichi’s adventures, but these sorts of shows do often forget to consider the passage of time in spots like this. Let’s see if Joe’s still in that hot spring.
- Taichi and Sora were servants 72 and 73. Golemon was servant 99. We should probably assume that the Gotsumon comprise the bulk of the numbers in between that, but it’s fun to speculate on other possibilities (*cough* Guardromon). The numbering system also increases how badly we wanted Yamato and Joe in there instead.
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