It looks like things are not going to Maeshima’s plans after the team outright refuses to let him join the team. And I mean, who can blame them? He’s cocky, rude, and just is straight up not in any of their good graces. Now is it because of the way he treated them when they were all in Elementary school, or is it the fact that he consistently riles up the skate leading team whenever he comes across them? Well, it’s both. And with the sudden urge to return to skating just to defeat Shinozaki his rival? Of course, it wouldn’t sit all that great with the rest of the team! So good on you Iondai team for taking a stand against Maeshima.
But Maeshima’s a force to be reckoned with as he practically inserts himself into their practice. Honestly, I think the team was well within their rights to just tell him to leave, especially since he’s not a member. His persistence is good I guess, but perhaps the rest of the team can take a page from Kiriyama’s book and just straight up put their foot down and not let him join. Which actually leads me to a frustration with the series from these first three episodes – it really seems that Maeshima doesn’t really receive consequences for his actions? It’s frustrating because I think it would do him some good to actually be put in his place. Any time he’s about to be met with even a fraction of consequences someone shows up and practically absolves him of whatever he did and he continues down the path of doing whatever the heck he wants.
But on that same line of thought, I am really darn happy with how the captain handled Maeshima in episode two especially after the “You all have never beat me, so just shut up and follow me” line. I think it perfectly captures Maeshima’s over-confidence and self-centeredness and to have the captain practically destroy him in a one-on-one match was good. Thank you for knocking him down at least half a peg. I’m glad they addressed that they aren’t the same people he skated against in Elementary school and further help acknowledge that Maeshima, as good as he was, took a very significant break from skating. And while it’s a little frustrating that Maeshima didn’t learn too much from it (thanks to Sasugai’s arrival) I’m happy that it happened.
But hey! Now that Sasugai’s arrived why not raise the stakes to a circumstance that pretty much everyone can agree to! Let’s have an actual skate leading competition to keep Maeshima on the team or send himself packing his bags to another school. But of course, Maeshima has to up the ante and add himself to the bet. Honestly, I’m not sure if this was their way of helping us get to know more of the characters better, but most of the set up and prep for me was just kind of frustrating. They didn’t really offer any development or background on any of the characters except that Himekawa wasn’t super recognized in middle school. Otherwise, it’s just Himekawa, Jounouchi, and Maeshima fighting each other and Kubota is there just doing his best. Not that it matters since it seems like as a reserve he probably won’t get his chance in the spotlight for the rest of the series. Maybe I’m wrong about that, but in this single episode there were just so many new characters that were introduced, that it’s become pretty clear that we’re probably not going to get solid development on a good chunk of characters.
As for the actual match that they had…. I’m glad that once again Maeshima and his team lost, but again no consequences. Someone else comes in and makes a comment that basically tosses the whole point of the match out the window. So, all I can do is hope that he learned something and will take that into future episodes. If anything, Himekawa withdrawing might be considered a consequence, but we won’t really know about the reasoning until ep. 4. But either way, it looks Maeshima and Sasugai (as long as he fills out his transfer paperwork) are here to stay and we can finally start getting this team to cooperate so that they can make it to Nationals!
Now that I’ve seen three episodes, I’m really not too sure how I’m feeling about this anime. I don’t think it’s bad, but it’s not something that stands out. I’m already dreading the fact that we have so many characters and they’re probably not going to be developed all that much. Maybe Kiriyama may change his opinion about Maeshima and be nicer? Maybe Maeshima will chill out just a little bit? Who knows? All I can do is keep watching and see what new things will come up in future episodes. There’s still a lot of potential that the series could be holding so, I’m going to stick with it just a little bit longer, so let’s see what the team will have to deal with next!