Hello! I’ll be temporarily covering Digimon Adventure: (2020) for Shadow while they recover from their injury. ^_^v
Digimon Adventure: (2020) is a first for me in that it’s the first time I’ve watched a Digimon episode in Japanese. I was 12 when the original series aired on Fox Kids in North America, so holy freaking hell do I feel old now. Especially watching the opening theme of Digimon Adventure: (2020) and remembering snippets from the original English opening (which still gives me nostalgia goosebumps, omg).
Anyways, enough me whining about ye old days of yore. I was never super into Digimon but I watched it with a close childhood friend of mine because she was super into it at the time. I watched most of the original series, and bits of the second season Digmon Adventure 02 until I lost interest.
Unlike Shadow, I was never a big Mimi fan. Everytime I think of the original Digimon series I am reminded of the semi-crappy English dub, and Mimi’s voice always used to grate on my nerves. If they wanted to convey that she was a spoiled kid then they knocked that characterization out of the park, but that part of her character made me not like her at all. And seeing her sipping tea from a proper cup in the shade provided to her by Palmon in the opening scene of this episode, while her new friends sit out in the sun eating on the ground, just brought that alllll back to me. ^^;; (So who was my favourite character? Yamato, with Sora in a close second. Three guesses who I shipped.)
So this episode is the introduction of the next member of the DigiDestined: Joe Kido. His Digimon partner is the aquatic
Pokemon Digimon Gomamon. Taichi and Sora try to cross the strait to get to the mainland (with Mimi waiting back on land why???) but a giant aggressive squid Digimon named Gesomon knocks them out of the sky and prevents them from crossing. Gomamon interferes and saves them, which leads the trio to meeting Joe.
Joe in Digimon Adventure: (2020) reminds me of his original incarnation, except that he is definitely more… physical? I remember his devotion to school and studying, for sure. I don’t remember him physically lashing out at his surroundings like he did in this episode.
Joe is initially resistant to helping Taichi, Sora and Mimi cross the sea because he’s so obsessed with studying for his upcoming middle school exams. He is grateful to Gomamon for helping him when he first landed in the digital world but he doesn’t consider the Digimon to be his partner. Taichi and the others decide to attempt to cross the strait again, with Gomamon’s help, by first luring Gesomon onto solid ground so they can defeat it. However the giant Digimon quickly retreats back to the water where it can use its giant tentacles to pull Togemon and Greymon into the water.
Gomamon gets hurt in the assault and Joe rushes over to be by his side. They have a little pep talk and bond, which helps Gomamon digivolve into Ikkakumon. With a water-friendly
Pokemon Digimon on their team, the second half of the battle quickly turns in the DigiDestined’s favour. Ikkakumon attacks Gesomon underwater and knocks it onto land when it attempts to flee. Togemon and Greymon renew their attacks on Gesomon and Ikkakumon finishes the squid off with one last Harpoon Vulcan to its back. Now the waters are safe, and Joe and Gomamon part of the DigiDestined team, so Sora and the others can safely cross.
The gang doesn’t even reach the continent’s shores before they are under attack but enemy Digimon. They get separated but all manage to safely arrive on the shore… only to be immediately attacked by several Tankmon and Solarmon, plus some gorilla-like Digimon firing at them with an arm cannon. A mysterious figure appears out of nowhere to urge Sora and her friends to follow him to some nearby cliffs.
It’s Yamato and his Digimon Gabumon! Ahhh it’s so odd for me to hear him with a Japanese seiyuu, his voice is so deep now! His original English dub had a deeper voice compared to the others too, but I feel like his voice is even lower in Japanese. (Not a criticism, just an observation.)
Yamato and Gabumon (now Garurumon) rush on ahead (typical Yamato, if I remember his initial character from the original series correctly) but get stuck in the oncoming fire. After a near-miss with Joe, Taichi and Sora resolve to become a decoy to help Yamato get to the fortress undetected.
Taichi, Sora and their Digimon catch up with Yamato and break into the fortress. Sora and Birdramon remain behind at the fortress’ entrance to fight DarkTyranomon, a T-Rex-like Digimon who was guarding the fortress’ entrance. Meanwhile Taichi and Yamato go on ahead to take down Gorimon (the gorilla Digimon with the cannon arm).
The whole scenario forces Yamato to look around at this group of people who are doing their best to support him, even as he forges ahead on his own to defeat Gorimon. Joe and Mimi are still running around on the beach being shot at by Tankmon; Sora and Birdramon are fighting DarkTyranomon alone; and Agumon knocked out the Solarmon which allowed Yamato and Garurumon to approach Gorimon near undetected. Yamato had insisted on getting into the fortress alone, yet in the end he needed the help of others, his new friends, to achieve his goal.
This realization and the emotion behind it helps power Garurumon’s big flashy move, Fox Fire, which allows him to defeat both the Solarmon and Gorimon. With Gorimon gone, Palmon and Gomamon digivolve into their next forms and take down the Tankmon firing at them. See, with friendship and a little firepower you can overcome anything life (or the digital world) throws at you. ;D
I’m really impressed with the quality of the animation I’ve seen so far in Digimon Adventure: (2020)! Even during the action sequences I didn’t spot anything that looked odd, misshaped or animated sloppily. Everyone looks and acts like they used to in the original series. Kudos to Toei Animation!
Anyways, once the group makes it inside the empty fortress there is a happy reunion. The DigiDestined move on to find a mysterious room with what looks like a giant floating computer chip of some kind, as well as several large monitors. When Taichi approaches the large chip his Digivice starts to glow. He reaches out to touch the chip and although he cannot read the script, Taichi somehow knows that it has something to do with the Holy Digimon. Transference by osmosis I guess? Seems a little lazy, but ok. >>
During the writing of this review, I noticed that the opening theme features scenes with Taichi and the other DigiDestined, except Yamato. He’s got the ending theme all to himself, at least up until the last few seconds of the song. I guess this is meant to signify Yamato’s distance from the rest of the group and how he prefers to work alone, so to speak, whereas Taichi and the others are all about being a team and working together. Another nice touch.
Writing this has been a nice nostalgic flashback down memory lane. Next week we’ll get to see another familiar face, Ogremon! And another dinosaur-looking Digimon I don’t recognize or remember. o_O