It is understatement to say this episode was a hot mess. It was unbelievably boring. I was hoping for some witty exchanges, but nothing. It was annoying how predictable it was, and for the sake of switching up the tempo I wished Takeru had blown the use of his skill because the reactions that would have followed would have been freaking hilarious. It certainly didn’t help the fact Fusion Fire enables him to use his opponent’s fusion materials as his own was straight up disgusting. Violet Chimera’s is super sick though. Love it.
And the dull exchange wasn’t the only problem. The animation this week, was absolutely horrific. It has been a while since I have last seen an episode with this many flaws in the animations, and it was terribly difficult to ignore because it stood out like a sore-thumb. In fact, it was so distracting, I had a difficult time focusing on the duel. I did notice the animation improved for a bit during the second half of the episode, but overall it wasn’t good.
We all knew Aoi was going to lose, it was going to happen no matter how badly we wished for her to win— even when she is in this stupid mindset right now. Aside from her internal monologue at the beginning of the episode that made my head hurt, I enjoyed seeing she has taken the time to properly reflect on her deck, identify her vulnerabilities and how she can cover her weaknesses, all while building off of her core style of chipping away at her opponent’s life points. The most pleasant surprise however had to be the Link Fusion Summon, which was awesome to see how characters each will have their own unique Fusion summoning sequences, as they do with Links and Rituals Summons.
However, her loss may not be in vain. So as long as the writers don’t intend to sabotage her further, (something I honestly don’t have a lot of faith in…) this could turn into a crucial learning experience. Aoi was able to recognized something important, and that is the bond between Takeru and Flame. There is an opportunity for Aoi to possibly start reflecting on what Ignis are, what are their bonds with Humans/Partners, and potentially recognize it would be in humanity’s best interest for them to be with the partners they have chosen to be with. However I don’t believe she knows that part of the story yet, how the victims and and Ignis are connected to each other. In fact, perhaps it will encourage her to investigate the matter further. Of course the worst case scenario (and the stupidest thing that could happen), she becomes greedy and wants an Ignis partner of her own since she can’t bond with her AI, at least not in the same way she could with an Ignis.
Either way, I hope this loss will enable her to start looking outside of her brother’s box, and start thinking for herself and investigating on her own terms, rather than going along with the flow of others.
Yuusaku was MIA this episode because he has gone ahead to investigate the enemy. Next week we see he will be encountering Haru and Bohman. The preview indicates the subject of the Lost Incident is going to be brought up. However I am a bit worried for him, since Yuusaku looks alarmed, and potentially vulnerable. Just when he thought he could start putting the past behind him, it looks like the past is about to come back to hunt him, showing even with the Hanoi Knights gone, the case has yet to be closed.
Oh and one last thing: Flame blushing at Emma and calling her a Goddess was freaking hilarious!
Watch out Takeru, Ghost Girl might steal Flame’s heart!!!!!