Now this is what I’m talking about. If this much shit went down in every match in Captain Tsubasa, I’d be a happy woman. We started off the episode strong with Hyuga getting brutally rejected for a running high five with Wakashimazu.

This is poetry in motion. It is, quite honestly, one of the best things in the last ten or so episodes of this series. That wasn’t in the manga, was it? I would have remembered it if it were in the ‘80s anime, wouldn’t I? Whoever thought of adding this is a genius and a poet. Or if it was in the manga, Takahashi is a genius and a poet. But we knew that anyway.

This was, in fact, a start so strong that I was worried the rest of the episode would feel like a letdown in comparison. But then I paused on this and I couldn’t stop thinking about how it looks like Katagiri awkwardly photoshopped Tsubasa and Hyuga into a picture with him so he’d look like he had cool friends in his Facebook profile picture. And I knew everything was going to be fine.

This episode had a lot of visual moments I found funny, actually. Like when Hyuga did this to the ground and nobody took even the slightest bit of notice:

And Hyuga’s super-dorky pose here:

Mostly Hyuga, really. He’s so theatrical. I like to imagine he spends every waking moment he’s not using to play football thinking of gimmicks like this. New headcanon: Hyuga is a huge fame whore who courts the press at every opportunity.

Oh, and we got our third and fourth (?) net-breaking goals of the show! Because even in the state he’s in, Tsubasa’s not going to let Hyuga break a net without him doing that plus blasting a hole in the stadium. It also sort of feels unfair because at least 70% of the force that impact was down to Hyuga’s strength. But Captain Tsubasa cares not for fairness. And actually, speaking of that, very valid point here:

Why yes, Ishizaki. It’s almost as if… the story lied about that in order to make the situation at the time seem more dire? I wonder how many more “one last Drive Shot”s he’s going to fire by the end of this match.

Morisaki’s goalkeeping was even more piss-poor than usual this episode. Okay, even Wakabayashi might have had trouble with those two Tiger Shots, but what the fuck was that other near-goal in between them? Thank god Suddenly Competent Ishizaki was there to save the day. Long may he live. I also want to mention that he got kicked in the throat by Wakashimazu and it was very funny.

I love that the doctor finally had enough of Tsubasa’s bullshit and just sent him to the infirmary. It might have taken him 15-ish episode of Tsubasa wilfully ignoring strict medical instructions, but he came to his senses in the end. I mean, obviously he’s going to be allowed back onto the pitch if he talks about how he really wants to win just a couple more times, but it’s something.

On a final note, this heavy European Youth Tournament arc foreshadowing with the Japanese Youth Football Guys is making me wonder whether we’re going to get a movie/OVAs/possibly even another series? I’d be really excited for any one of those. I love the first few tournament arc, but they’ve been adapted to death at this point, whereas everything else is severely neglected. I’m not holding my breath, but it would be pretty fun if David could carry the Captain Tsubasa anime torch for another while!