OH SNAP. THEY ACTUALLY SHOWED BABY HARU…. Wait, they never showed baby Futaba… I FEEL CHEATED. Anyways, it was really nice to see Haru as a child and her relationship with her father before he became a bag of douchery. Especially since in the game, I really didn’t care too much for Haru because she felt super shoehorned in. But I like how the anime showed her at school and in other areas so she didn’t feel as last minute as she did in the game. I also enjoyed seeing her relationship with her grandfather and how he inspired her.
After Haru tells the group that she doesn’t want to marry that douchebag finance of hers (I mean, who could blame her? He’s a freaking creep) they storm the palace to bring a stop to Okumura. Before they start their heist, Haru officially names herself “Noir” which is a pretty epic and cool codename. I’d say it’s the best codename out of all of them to be honest.
After the naming ceremony, the episode dips. The build up to Haru’s awakening just wasn’t there and everything just kind of happened. I was also pretty disappointed how undramatic Haru’s awakening was in the anime compared to the game. I mean, the way Haru just collapsed to the floor in a really dramatic pose and the spotlight that suddenly shined down on her out of nowhere was HILARIOUS in the game. Sadly, there was no such thing in the anime. The spotlight was there, but the camera was pulled so close to her that I couldn’t really even make out her pose. The cinematography is just so bad in this anime, it’s ridiculous.
Haru awakens her persona’s true power, which hilariously is her persona pulling out a large array of firearms from her dress. Sadly, the fight with her robo fiance wasn’t all that interesting with just a flurry of bullets (which we don’t even get to see actually hit the guy) and then the infamously bad anime version of the All-Out Attack. After the below average fight, the team finds the treasure. But before we get into that, I just loved the little call back to the game’s puzzle with shooting you and your team through these different transfer lines (which I got terribly lost in). I don’t know why it amused me so much, but it did.
Anyways, once they found the treasure, the calling card was sent and man, it was a little disturbing how everyone was reacting. Saying things like “just hurry up already” and “don’t care what the PT’s do as long as they show up.” It just shows that these people just want to be entertained by the supernatural, which Yusuke even points out. It’s a little disturbing. However, considering how far they’ve come, they feel as if they can’t stop now. At this point, I did feel that they really needed to put on the breaks and really think about their situation. Are they moving too fast? Is everything going a little too well? What if something goes wrong? More on that later.
I’m sad to see how the anime went back on making uninteresting fight scenes. I thought they were doing better, but with Futaba’s arc and this one, the battles have mostly gone back to sending energy bolts at each other without much of a difference in dynamics. The most dynamic part of the fight was when Ren sent out his persona and it swung around the giant robot. That part was pretty cool. Unfortunately, the rest of fight felt so flat, which is disappointing. Though I really do like the remixed fighting music that they’ve been showcasing lately. But man, that All-Out Attack with Morgana looked like they weren’t even trying anymore. They really should stop doing those. They look so bad.
Once they brought down Okumura, they try and get the truth behind the mental shutdowns out of him. Unfortunately, he’s sobbing uncontrollably, preventing them from learning more. And when they hurry to escape, with Okumura promising he’ll turn over a new leaf… The absolute WORST shot scene I have ever witnessed occured. That shot to Okumura was SO BADLY ANIMATED I couldn’t even believe it. A spot of red just appeared on him after the sound of a gun. My animator soul just screams in indignance because there wasn’t even any movement from the force of the shot. UGH, it’s so bad. And then we get “treated” to a freaking close up on the Black Mask. This scene couldn’t have been done worse. *writhes in agony* ANYWAYS, I remember in the game I was like: Something bad is going to happen. They’ve been winning too much and BAM I was right. Literally.
Haru is worried about her father, but everyone reassures her everything will be fine. Little do they know… But to celebrate Haru’s joining of the team, they go to Destinyland. This scene basically helped buffer the absolute frustration I had with the previous scene because of the adorable little details they put into this scene. I loved the range of enjoyment the group had on the rollercoaster. With Ryuji, Ann and Haru having a blast, Futaba and Makoto being elegantly stoic, and Yusuke and Ren looking like they’re going to be sick. And boy did I love the little Futaba and Makoto interaction going on in the background. Seeing their friendship gives me so much life.
As the group waits for the conference Okumura is heading, they talk about how the treasure was actually a spaceship model kit. And was it just me or did that random dude with the glasses in Haru’s flashback look very similar to Ren with neater hair (not by much but still lol). The press conference comes on and Okumura is just about to reveal some vital information when… his Shadow’s death catches up with him and undergoes a mental shutdown. They definitely toned it down in the anime, since it was pretty gruesome in the game. And despite how terrible the situation was, I actually liked how they carried it out in the anime with Haru reacting in horror and disbelief while crying. In the game… she was strangely very level headed about the whole thing. Your only relative literally just died, YOU SHOULD REACT A LITTLE MORE. Thankfully the anime did fix that. Poor Haru…
But aw man, I was a bit disappointed overall with this episode. Especially since they took out a really good scene before the fight with Okumura which demonstrated both Haru and Morgana’s resolve of being part of the Phantom Thieves. Last episode was actually decent and I enjoyed watching it. So keeping that higher expectation pretty much backfired on me this episode. Not to mention this episode brought back the terrible pacing which was disappointing because last week’s episode actually had good pacing. Get your act together Persona 5! You have three more eps left- Wait. Are they actually changing the amount of episodes? Because all of the official sources seem to claim there is an indefinite amount of episodes now. Which could make sense because there is NO WAY they can cram all of the remaining content into THREE episodes.