This week focused on not passion, but rivalry. I suppose that makes sense considering Shindoine doesn’t want anyone to gain an upper-hand over her. Although we didn’t see her try to take it a step further, with the subject of rivalry and her frustration of losing the one advantage she had over the others, she is backed into a corner again. Though I have to say, I do find it a bit ironic how on one hand, Shindoine argues it would be more continent for her rivals to disappear, where as Chiyu counters that it’s because she has rivals that she can jump higher. AKA: She is motivated to constantly improve herself to keep up with her competition. If Shindoine shared the same kind of mentality, boy she would be a force to be reckoned with, regardless whether that were to be out of foolish and reckless actions, or well thought out strategies.
It is also worth noting the King himself was even pressuring the three of them to see who would be willing to take “one more step”. At first it spooked me with the idea that he was about to order them to absorb even more Mega Parts, or to kick things up a notch once more. But based on the lackluster events today, it seems it he was probably most likely referring to the final dose he needs to finally complete his revival. Considering Shindoine failed to get much, let alone anything done today, I wouldn’t be surprise if she wasn’t able to collect enough energy for the last stretch. So unless Guaiwaru (I’m assuming will be the one sent out into the field next week) actually manages to get the job done, it might just take all three of them (who knows) will have to combine their efforts to get that last bit they need.
But boy, remember when I said Guaiwaru came off as weak? Goodness, might as well include Shindoine too because man this week was not a good showing for her. It seems the only reason Shindoine was able to succeed last time was not only because she was able to catch the girls off-guard, but it was also because it was before their power upgrade.
So I have to admit, I am disappointed. I was really hoping to see Shindoine fight for real, but in the end, she hardly did anything at all. Heck, she couldn’t even get off real attack on Shindoine beyond landing one kick, blocking a hit and throwing herself at Chiyu only to completely miss her. And then when she finally decided to try firing a long-range attack, she was blown away by Asumi before she could even use it. (Still better than just standing there and watching though…) So it is an understatement why after having witnessed such an epic and intense the fight between Daruizen and Nodoka (which was just as short, but it was still incredibly dynamic and epic to watch), this one was terribly underwhelming. And that is a bummer because I was hoping Shindoine could show us how capable she can actually be when she puts her mind to it. That’s why even though I love this show to bits, even I have to acknowledge one of the biggest flaws this series has is the lack of depth in both Shindoine’s and Guaiwaru’s characters. There really isn’t much to them at all, so they end up coming off as a bit shallow. And I find that to be quite frustrating when we see how well a fleshed out antagonist like Daruizen can be. Obviously, he is the exception because he is more important story-wise due to his connection to Nodoka. But still, it doesn’t mean the other two should be shafted to the point they pale in comparison to the other. Shindoine’s case in particular is quite frustrating when we have yet to be given an explanation why she loves the King. And we have seen her question the origin of her feelings at one point, but has been swept under the rug and it hasn’t been brought up since. Whether it’s infatuation, genuine love, or it was manipulation by the King to give her a source of motivation to serve him, it would be nice to get an answer. But frankly after this episode, I am not really holding my breath for them at this point for them to actually expand on it. If they do, great, if they don’t, then they don’t. It is as simple as that.
As for Chiyu’s spotlight, it was kind of a mixed bag. Maybe it was just me (and it’s probably just me), but I was kind of taken aback when she suddenly declared she would seriously aim for the World Games. Now don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with Chiyu realizing she actually did want to pursue a career as a professional athlete. It’s just that I feel this development was something that could have been executed a lot better.
A big part of that is because of the circumstances leading up to her conclusion. Instead of feeling like Chiyu came to this conclusion out of the love for the sport and competition, it almost felt like (to me anyways) she was unconsciously peer-pressured into pursuing this path. After-all, having won the championships and broken her own records, all the sudden there were all these expectations and many people (including Hinata, and her rival Takami) immediately assumed she would naturally think of pursuing the World Stage. In fact I actually felt overwhelmed on her behalf. Chiyu also expressed her frustration after Takami had taken her love for High Jumps lightly when she initially was satisfied with just doing it for fun (and Takami later apologized for saying that). And she had every right to feel upset about that. It’s not like you can’t seriously compete seriously without aiming to become a professional. It’s not always about reaching the top. Like Chiyu, everyone has their own goals and motivation. As for her case, Chiyu drive is to get close to where the sky and the ocean meets, and there absolutely nothing wrong with that. Sure it’s a great opportunity should you desire to pursue that path, but nobody should give you shit for not going for it.
Of course it can also be said this conclusion does make sense considering she claimed to have never thought about pursuing a career as a professional athlete until now. While she has she never really thought about her rivals to the extent of competing with their records, we do know she does have a competitive streak in her, as she is always striving for greater heights.
Though if there was anything to compare this to situation to, the best one that comes to mind would be Haruka from Free! For such a long time, all he wanted to do was to just swim “free”, but eventually he let go of that mentality so he could continue swimming as a professional athlete. I suppose this situation is more or less the same thing, except it just happened in a single episode as opposed to gradually building up to it over time.
Anyhow, regardless of how I feel about the way they presented it, one thing for certain: Chiyu is now driven to strive for greater heights by taking aim to fly to the World Stage, so good on her!
Next week, uh… Apparently we’re getting a Beach Volleyball episode? Okay then. See you guys next time!
PS: Chiyu’s dad helping her get into High Jump was the sweetest thing!
Extra Note: The next Precure installment has been announced: Tropical-Rouge! Precure