You have got to be kidding me.
It is impossible for me to express in words just how royally pissed off I am about this finale. UGH! Just when I had my hopes up, they blow it!
I am, honestly, I speechless. I am speechless by how they somehow managed fuck up the finale this much. It’s painful because there were actually ways to avoid ending as a train-wreck. This finale, could have been salvaged, if they only they used their time properly.
But considering this was consistently a problem throughout the entire series, I really should have known better.
Still, it doesn’t make it any less agonizing to sit through.
Let’s start with the first fifteen minutes of this episode. What better way, to piss me off, than to introduce the next precure heroine and have her get involved in the fight. Like no. Would it kill them to wait a week?! LET HER DEBUT IN HER OWN SERIES OKAY?! The worst part about this, it was such an awful feeling, that now I have a negative association with her, and that’s no way to go into a brand new precure series. I don’t know how I’m going to feel next week, but honestly, varying on how the first episode turns out, I might just decide I want to take a break from Precure after this. That’s how annoyed I am. I’ll probably be cooled off by then though.
Secondly, the whole going back to the future, they didn’t need to drag it out until the fifteen minutes mark. They really didn’t. They could have wrapped it up within the first five minutes, especially since they skipped the opening theme.
Then, once they finally made the time jump, Emiru’s and Lulu’s reunion eats up a huge chunk precious time again, and if it wasn’t painful enough, they decide to shove their bloody friendship song down our throats one last time.
Oh, and we also had to sit through Hana giving birth.
Thirdly, the thing baffles and irritated me the most, was how we never got to see George or Hana interact, at all.
They litterally, have no excuses for not showing George. I don’t give a shit about the implication, of seeing him run with flowers in his hands.
No fuck that. This unacceptable.
I mean seriously, if your not going to at least show us how the two met and fell in love in the future, then tell me:
WHAT THE HELL WAS THE POINT OF EVEN HINTING ABOUT GEORGE AND HANA’S RELATIONSHIP?!
It’s beyond me why they thought it would be okay to ignore him altogether. After all the build up, you don’t just sweep him under the rug and not even show his face in the future! Like come on. That’s just being fucking lazy.
And frankly, they didn’t need to even make the connection between him and Hana thing at all. It could have been for a different woman entirely or just keep it as George doing this purely because he was sick and tired of seeing the precures efforts being in vain. It’s infuriating how they didn’t follow through with it at all! If you’re going to do it, FOLLOW THROUGH WITH IT!
God, I am so disappointed with how they ended this show, I really don’t want to waste anymore of my time and energy talking about the finale. It’s not worth it to me at all anymore. I’m so done with this.
That said: Do I regret covering this till the very end?
To be honest with you, not really. I wouldn’t have continued covering this show if I really hated it. I wasn’t doing this for completion sake, I stuck with it because although I was frustrated, I was always clinging to the thread of hope, waiting for them to finally pull it together, and when they did, it was invigorating. And your support of encouraging me to stick with it did help me during some of the lowest moments of the series. It’s just terribly unfortunate, but this is yet another series with an unrealized potential.
With that said, I think I expressed my disappointment about the finale enough, so let’s go over with what went wrong, and things they could have done better.
The Problem with the Story & Pacing
It’s no secret that this series was poorly paced and managed. They wasted far too much time on fillers and specials that shouldn’t have happened in this series. People wondered why some of us were flipping out about the crossover episodes, well that’s because they were wasting precious time that could have been used to move the plot forward, or flesh out characters like Saaya and Homare.
To get a better idea of just how much time was wasted, let’s do a breakdown.
The first twelve episodes were fairly solid. During this time it’s just the main trio, and we see Hana experience her first hurdle. However within this time frame, the girls weren’t quite united in a way you would probably expect them to be. In fact for many of the episodes (which most of them had the purpose of contributing to Hana’s conflict) they weren’t really hanging out at all. Either they were supporting the other with working towards their dreams, or it was Hana suffering her insecurity of the lack of self worth.
Episode 13 is when Lulu entered the circle. Saaya and Lulu had a hilarious rivalry going on between them, which in turn allowed us to see a different side of Saaya. But unfortunately for us, we never actually get to see the two of them form any kind of friendship because starting from Episode 15, that’s when Emiru and Lulu starts to take over the show.
This was supposed to be a parody, but the sad part is, this is exactly what ended up happening.
For the next seven episodes, it is all about Emiru and Lulu developing their friendship. And you know what makes me so salty about this? They didn’t need Emiru’s character for this. You know who could have been just as great as a friend?
THIS WONDERFUL SWEETHEART~
Unlike Homare who has Henry, Saaya doesn’t have anyone else other than the girls in the group! Better yet this probably would have helped steer them away from throwing music into the mix. Without a doubt in my mind, these two would have been just as entertaining to watch, if not more. Perhaps we would have even been able to see more of Saaya’s interest in robots, as we have discovered during the Christmas episode. This would have been a great way to balance out the group’s circle, and better yet, offer an opportunity for Henry to properly be a part of it. On top of that, this creates a situation where Lulu wouldn’t have to become a precure, because as a robot, she is fully capable to participate in the fights as she had when she served Criasu.
Now when you take a step back think about just how much of a game changer those six episodes could have been, and if Saaya were the one to have been Lulu’s friend. This series would have already looked radically different, in a better way.
After the reveal of George being Criasu’s Boss, the series enters what I call the “Sluggish Mid-Game” that took place between Episode 25 and 37. Here we had an assorted mixed of character focused episodes and filler episodes. Most noticeably, this stage focused primarily on wrapping up Hana’s past conflict, Saaya’s dream changing and Homare coming to terms how her feelings are unrequited. It was a weird point in the series where some episodes were a hit, others were a miss, and as all of this is happening, my patience and hope for the series was diminishing. Between those twelve episodes, only three of them focused on the main characters, and even then, the writing quality just wasn’t always there. They may have been okay, but they were never amazing.
From episode 38 and onwards we begin the final phase. This is where the series found its footing once again. But at the same time, poor decisions made in both the early and mid game of the series was coming back to bite them. Most noticeably, it was apparent how much both Saaya’s and Homare’s suffered from the lack of airtime.
NUMBER OF EPISODES WASTED
While it may shock some, when it comes to the number of character focused episode, Homare, Saaya, Emiru all had five, and Lulu had four. However it doesn’t feel that way because even when the episodes weren’t about Lulu or Emiru, they still continued overshadowing both Saaya and Homare presence, and a lot of that time is spent with them shoving their god damn songs down our throats. Needless to say, the episodes Emiru and Lulu had taken up, along with the Crossover Special that took place during Episodes 22 (which ironically, was also Emiru and Lulu focused) and Episode 36 and 37. And then there was also the weak episodes (28, 34, and 45 due to the lousy way they dealt with Gelos character) that really didn’t help the series move forward whatsoever and should have been used more effectively
And that brings us to a grand total of: Thirteen Episodes!
Can you believe it? They could have made better use of thirteen episodes! That’s a big deal! Characters could have been fleshed out so much better, the story could have flowed better, but more importantly: This show could have seriously benefited making use of that time more efficiently, and they wasted it.
Talk about a lost potential!
LOSING SIGHT OF THE BIG PICTURE: LACK OF FOCUS
For me, among one of the most glaring problems of this series was the lack of focus. It was around the mid-series when I felt the show was beginning to lose track of the main message they wanted to get across. The reason for that is because I felt like they were trying to focus on too many things all at once. Some of the most important themes this show started covering various thing such as motherhood/maternity, babies, family, various forms of love, dreams, music, the future, hope, and self-confidence.
HMMMMM. Something doesn’t quite belong there does it?
Ah, that’s right, music.
This is is the source of the biggest distraction of the series. Seriously this show could have been far better without it. I don’t know why they felt the need to add it in, but I wished they hadn’t.
And truth to be told, if someone asked me what Hugtto Precure’s distinctive theme was, I wouldn’t be able to give an answer. There were so many themes being flung around, among the few that stood out were motherhood and encouragement to become who you want to be. Maybe it was easier for others to pin-point it, but for me it just didn’t reach me like it has in other series.
The biggest downfall of Hugtto Precure were how terribly the characters were written. Everyone with the sole exception of Hana and even Hugtan (because let’s face it, this is the only baby I could ever think of done right) was a hot mess.
First of all, let’s start off with the two main culprits responsible for playing a huge part in screwing up both Saaya’s and Homare’s development: Emiru and Lulu. I don’t care how much you love them, they shouldn’t have become precures, or else they shouldn’t have even existed in this series in the first place.
It baffled me how much time they wasted on these two, constantly shoving their bloody songs down our throats just about every week to the point I had to rip my headphones off because slapping the mute button just wasn’t fast enough. I was 100000% done with the musical bullshit. This was without a doubt the biggest distraction of the entire show, and is also their biggest mistake. Their music adds nothing to plot, it was just a waste of freaking time. And in all honestly, these two were one of the main contributors to causing me to almost drop this series very early on.
And this is especially infuriating considering the two second main characters, or were supposed to be anyways, were benched to the point they were never able to be fleshed out.
The Benched Heroines
It saddens me how badly both Homare’s and Saaya’s character were neglected. The moment Emiru and Lulu popped up, these two were virtually benched for so long, by the time they were finally able to see the light of day again, it was already too late. Too much time had already passed, and they lost their time to be properly fleshed out.
The fact the girls never actually had the time to properly develop their friendship is really astonishing to me, especially in a series like precure where the girls are usually tightly knitted together. But this time? I couldn’t find it in me to believe they were friends. It remains vivid in my mind how the beginning of the series started off with the girls each doing their own thing, focusing on pursuing their dreams. I feel like they shot themselves in the foot by doing this, because Hana in particular found herself to be alone and suffering because she felt ashamed that she hadn’t found anything she was good at yet to work towards.
Worst of all, was how they set it up so we have two separate groups, where you basically had Hana going back and forth between them, and rarely (until closer to the end of the series) altogether as a unit.
Dear god, the villains were such a disappointment. The first group I can understand because they are more like the gophers of the organizations. But the second group of the so-called “elitist”? I had a lot of hope in them, but they quickly became a huge failure. With the exception of George, everyone else failed big time to the point their presence was not needed. In fact you know there’s a huge problem when Pupple, who despite her laziness, actually did more than Gelos (who I don’t understand why she even exists, or the point of her story to begin with). It was as if they didn’t put any thought into their characters whatsoever. All they did were simply exist. And this was in particular infuriating because it quickly became apparent how not a single one of them were a threat.
George: Wasted Potential
What made George an interesting villain is how his ideals of Happiness, clashes with the Precure. He doesn’t sees himself as antagonist, in fact what he actually trying to do do is protect the precure (or more specifically, Hana), because he believes their struggle to protect humanity is futile. In fact we learn the ones who are responsible for eventually making time stop, are actually the people of the future. This is why he believes he is doing the right thing. What he wants to accomplish is to stop time when Humanity and Hana are the happiest. However that isn’t to say there is some inconsistency in his character. One hand we see his love for Hana, but other times we see them giving orders to his employees to make sure the world.
And perhaps the biggest disappointment of all was the lack of build up on George’ side. God this is frustrating, because he ended up proving to be the most intriguing character of the entire show. His character and his backstory were what reeled me right back into this series, so looking back, I sincerely wished they had spent more time fleshing his story out. That’s why I am not surprised seeing that there were some people wishing there were a sequel for this series, but as I mentioned earlier, they actually had 13 episodes to work with, and 14 if you include this one considering how much they managed to screw it up. They absolutely had more than enough time to make something work, so really they have no excuses whatsoever.
One way they could have done that was set it up so Hana would have more dreams about her connection with George. For instance, after their first encounter, they could have made it so she couldn’t initially see him in her dreams but have short conversations dropping hints a long the way. And overtime it would get to the point would suddenly see him as she did in Episode 47. This would have been a great way to pave the path to what would have led to the final fight where Hana would have a better understanding of where his fear and despair stems from, which then could have made it an even more emotional fight, as oppose to going in the circles and continuing their cryptic conversations. Then to top it off, once they did the time jump, we could see how Hana and George meet, and perhaps, without having to actually make us watch Hana give birth, see them altogether as a family instead and end it that way.
If there’s one redeeming factor about this show, I would have to say it’s the heroine, Hana. I felt she was really the only character done right. It was rewarding to watch see how much she has matured over the course of the series. Hugtan was also incredibly well done, and not once did I ever consider her to be annoying. It’s just a shame they weren’t able to delivery the same level of quality to the other characters, for both protagonists and antagonists.
Honestly, as much as I wanted to love this show, let’s be real here: Hugtto Precure is a hot mess. It’s ridiculous how they went from making the biggest comeback, to ending in such a inexcusable way. Hugtto had a lot of potential, but its lack of focus, failing to flesh out the girls friendship with each other, and benching them in favour of Emiru and Lulu, and used them to shove same god damn song down our throats just about every bloody episode— and don’t even get me started how pathetic the majority of the villains were! It amazes me I was able to cover it to the end, and there were definitely moments when I felt it was worth it— but if you haven’t watched it yet, I really don’t recommend this, in fact AVOID IT. There are so many better shows to watch. If you’re looking for a precure series to get into, save yourself a headache and watch Heartcatch, Happiness Charge! or Go! Princess Precure, or hope the next one will be better.
I could seriously use some chocolate right now.