Healin’ Good Precure Ep 44 & 45 [FINAL]

The last time I felt this emotionally drained while covering the last few episodes of a series was YGO ARC-V. If you followed my coverage for that, then should know just how much of a dumpster fire it was. Now you may be thinking I am comparing apple to oranges to the extreme, but when it comes to the emotional toll it had on me, they were pretty similar experiences, especially when it came down to my favourite characters being killed off.

I am not exaggerating when I say these past four weeks of Healin’ Good Precure really put me through the ringer because I am exhausted! So contrary to what I said a couple of months ago, I couldn’t be more ready to move onto something else to mend my broken heart.

It was painful because I honestly didn’t think this show would have such a lackluster and disappointing ending. The worst part about it was that these past few episodes were not fun for me to watch. It was a miserable, there’s no lighter way to put it. My problem with these past few episodes goes well beyond my gripes with how they killed Daruizen off. And frankly, ever since that travesty, everything just went downhill from there.

Frankly I already knew things were not looking good after watching Episode 43. And yet despite dropping all my expectations, unsurprisingly they still managed to disappoint me. That’s why I couldn’t bring myself to write up an entry last week on Episode 44. To sum up my entire mood in one picture, this would be it.

So Instead, I decided to spend that time reflecting on everything that happened and began the write up for the final review.

Now what about the finale?

Episode 45: A year and half passed since the trainees and Latte all returned home, and today the girls were invited visit Healing Gardens. Stuff happens that I don’t care to talk about because as much as I wanted to enjoy it, unfortunately I didn’t. Oh, and in case you were wondering: No, Daruizen and the rest did not reincarnate. Bummer I know, but I’m not surprised at this point because I just don’t care anymore. I guess you could say I am burned out.

If you were able to enjoy these past few episodes, that’s great, I’m happy for you because I wished I could feel the same. If you followed my coverage from the very beginning of this series, you should know how much I loved this show. That’s why it just breaks my heart that I feel this way.

Typically I have more to say about the final episode, but in all honesty I got nothing more to add. So instead we’re going to dive straight into my final thoughts on the series as a whole. I spent a lot to time sorting out my thoughts and putting together this final review because I really wanted to make sure I provided a fair assessment for this show.

Without further ado, let’s go over The Good, the Missed Opportunities and of course, The Bad.


FINAL THOUGHTS


~*~

The Good

The Lovable Trainees

The three trainees, Rabbirin, Nyatoran and Pegitan are hands down one of the best sidekicks I have seen in ages. They are charming, likable, flawed, all of the things that made each one of them memorable characters. Honestly this is how every sidekick/fairy should be treated in Precure. They are way more likeable if they have their own unique personalities.

Adaptive Antagonists

This was hands down my favourite part in the first half of the series. One of the things I absolute loathe are passive antagonists. For for once, we actually got to see them behave intelligently, brazenly and the best part, adapt to the girl’s growth. This kept the playing field well balanced, making their fights a challenge and so much fun to watch. This is something I would like to see more of going forward, because not only does it make the antagonists more interesting, it really helps the story when it’s in that sluggish phase when not too much is happening.

Daruizen: The Best Antagonist

Frankly I think he should have been the TRUE Final Boss.

Ever have a character who you know you shouldn’t love, but love them anyways? Say hello to my ultimate Bias of 2020. Very early on, Daruizen intrigued me with his aloof yet incredibly intelligent character. I love it when we get to see antagonists grow and adapt as the protagonists do over the course of the series. Daruizen explored many things, and even made some ballsy moves such as attacking Nodoka in such a direct way that it caught a lot of us, myself included, off-guard. But that wasn’t all to Daruizen’s character. He wasn’t simply a ‘villain’ to me, but a Pathogerm who was unique among his circle. Unlike the others who valued love and greed, the most important thing to him was ironically, living. He wanted to protect it, and he would do whatever it takes to do so. On top of that, what made him such a fascinating character was how fleshed out he was. He was cheeky, shrewd, intelligent and best of all, unpredictable (that was my favourite quality)! So even though he was the antagonist and a little shit who done terrible things, it sure didn’t take long before he became my #1 favourite character in this show. I absolutely loved everything about him, flaws and all.

And lo and behold, I was way more interested to find out what was going through that head of his than the main protagonists. Whoops. Well what can you do, these things happens sometimes! So naturally, when they killed him off I ended up crying like a baby. But it wasn’t just because I loved his character, but I was mostly upset with how he met his demise, which I will elaborate further below. Ironically, in hindsight of this tragedy, I came to realize that Daruizen was a big reason why I was so invested in this show. Whelp.

(Having an antagonist as your favourite character rarely ends well, but this wouldn’t be the first time. So this isn’t new to me, hahaha… [SOBS])

The Bold Message Promoting Self-Care

Despite having my gripes about my bias being forsaken, even I understand and respect the bold and long overdue message of standing up for your own best interest first when dealing with someone who abuses/hurt you. The one who has been hurt (Nodoka) had no obligation or responsibility to save/help the one who made her and many others suffer. It is something that should be explored more in these types of shows directed to a younger audience instead of the outdated trend of the bad boy being “saved” by the good girl.

The Epic Fights

This is the reason why the final boss fight was so underwhelming. The fights in this series were absolutely AWESOME. THERE WERE SO MANY OF THEM! But the best part about them was the fact the Antagonists were strong, and we started to see them get engaged into the battles too as time went on. Even though Batetemoda was such a creepy character, he made such a great opponent for the girls to fight. That’s why it was actually a bit disappointing to see him be taken out so soon, but fortunately we got to see Daruizen start getting engaged, bringing about the epic battle that took place in Episode 33. Man, that was good stuff.

Amazing Soundtrack

I’ve talked about this in other Precure series I have covered, but up until now, apart from Heartcatch and maybe another I’m forgetting, Precure’s soundtrack was never really present to me. However this time, right out of the gate, I was accutely aware of the music being played in the background, and that continued till the very end.

~*~

Missed Opportunities

Nodoka’s Illness

Frankly, I didn’t like how Nodoka was conveniently cured because Daruizen (who was her illness) was no longer in her body. The moment it was deemed she had “miraculously” recovered, I pretty much lost interest in her character. This didn’t really surprise me because while she was sweet and all, but to me she lost the thing that made her a unique heroine. When I first started watching this show, I thought it was an amazing and even beautiful thing to see Nodoka represent a demographic of those who endure any kind of sickness. I’m not saying Nodoka needed to be sick the entire show, but I think it would have had more impact if we saw her fighting to overcome her illness’ side-effects as she fought as a Precure, but also as an individual who despite their circumstances, is looking to continue living their life to their fullest. That’s why I feel like it was a missed opportunity to really create a memorable heroine. That being said, they still managed to make her a memorable one with the way she refused to help an antagonist who sought for help because they had hurt her because she didn’t want to.

Latte, 90% Passive Princess Pupper

Say what you want, but man it was a darn shame that Latte was limited to communicating strictly through the stethoscope. I get she was a baby and all, and we got to see her talk a BIT in the finale, but yeah, it’s too bad they set her up that way.

While did we get to see her undergo some form of character development, it was frustrating how she couldn’t contribute to conversations like the Trainees could, and it was sad how she often was forced to sit passively on the sidelines, only being able to do the bare minimum to help out because of her illness when a Pathogerm infects an Element. That being said, I am thankful she never turned into a Precure. Instead she got a role like the others did, being attached to the Precure’s weapon.

Playing with more Terra-Pathogerms and Parasites

This is probably the thing that I wished they had the time to expand on. This was arguably one of the most interesting and game changing development that could have contributed to the final battle. And yet, we only got to see this play out as a test subject two times, both cases being quickly resolved and swept under the rug to never be heard of again. It seems the only reason why this was introduced to us was for the purpose of “explaining” how Nodoka and Daruizen turned out to be connected in a way neither one of them expected to be. Frankly, given the King’s interest in it, I was surprised he didn’t push for more Terra-Pathogerms to be born, especially since he intended to consume them in order to become more powerful.

Add More Variety to the Precure’s Tool Kit

It is actually a shame we didn’t get to see more of this. I thought it was so cool when Nodoka made her rod a sword back in Episode 10. Much to my disappointment, we never got to see that again. That moment showed us they absolutely could have been a lot more creative with the way they use their rods, and I would have loved to see them explore that more. It also could have helped the girls find their individual strengths and use that to their advantage during the rare moments they are caught astray from the group.

~*~

The Bad

The Curse of the 4th Precure

There is a good reason why a lot of us have become wary of the 4th or 5th addition to the team, and that’s because of the notorious track record that comes with them. I had my doubts about Asumi to begin with, and while I appreciate she is a nice character, unfortunately she is so bland that she is a cardboard cutout. Asumi’s sole existence in this show is to bail out the girls when they are in trouble, which turned out to be one of my biggest gripes. Seriously, far too many times I found myself thinking “TOO OP, PLEASE NERF!” I immensely disliked that because she was so powerful, it forced the original trio to act as supports. We saw this again in the finale, which was incredibly frustrating to watch. But what really bothered me about this was how we didn’t get the chance to really see the girls become stronger on their own. Additionally, a lot of time was wasted, and as per usual, the original set of friends suffered from the lack of development, which leads me to the next point.

The Neglected Mains

Man it’s always frustrating to see them neglect the original cast in favor for the new girl. Hinata and Chiyu lost out so much time to flesh out their characters. This sucks because I really liked these two, especially Hinata. In fact I would say I liked Hinata a lot more than Nodoka, mainly because I found her to be more relatable. I loved how Hinata’s insecurities about her failure and inability to perform wasn’t something that was resolved earlier on or in a couple of episodes. That kind of thing isn’t easy to overcome, so it stuck with her all the way till the end. She was able to overcome it thanks to the encouragement and support she received from Nyatoran and her friends. Additionally she is incredibly charming, so what is there not to like about her?

Then we have Chiyu, who is a cool girl and I really liked how she was the unofficial leader of the squad. She was a badass, but most importantly- I am SO GLAD THEY DIDN’T MAKE HER A FREAKING STUDENT COUNCIL PRESIDENT! Instead she was an track and field athlete, and I loved that! However my biggest gripe is the way they quite literally dropped the dream of becoming a professional athlete out of thin air, because they did absolutely nothing to foreshadow her developing an interest for that career path. On top of that, the way they went about it was so weird- it came across as peer pressure. It was just jarring to watch when they had only been touching on her dream for taking over the family Inn up until that point. It feels like they couldn’t make up their mind and decided to make her pursue both.

Butchering the Villains

They all started out so promising, and then…it went all down the drain. Out of all the characters, Batetemoda and Guaiwaru probably had the most respectable finish because it their greed and ambition came back to bite them. As for Shindoine, good grief. What was the point of her character? All she had going for her was her and undying loyalty and infuation with the King. It didn’t help how they gave us a superficial and lazy explanation of how she “fell” for him.

And oh boy, don’t even get me started with how pathetically weak they made her! ARG! They had the audacity to make her a half-assed semi-final boss. Seriously, they give her a third evolution where she doesn’t go beserk and a fancy new outfit and she can’t even have a good fight of her own? COME ON, even Guaiwaru had a better showing than this when he fought the Precure in his third evolution! It makes absolute no sense to me how the girls who had been knocked out of their precure forms 21930812903812 times (IN JUST ONE DAY) could withstand fighting Shindoine in her third evolution without getting another buff up/upgrade of a sorts.

Actually now that I think about it… How the heck did they stay in one piece during Daruizen’s final fight? He was already super powerful to begin with to the point they struggled to keep up with him in his second evolution! How are we supposed to believe he was weaker in his beserk form? He absorbed a dozen fragments to heal himself!

God, just thinking back on them is making me realize these final fights were bloody awful compared to what we had seen much earlier on. I don’t know if it’s because production they ran out of time or they just gave up on it, but talk about disrespect to the antagonists. Especially Shindoine! Not once, they do anything to make Shindoine fights exciting, and even her demise was treated like an after-thought!

As for Daruizen’s case…it’s only natural that I am feeling super salty. As I mentioned earlier, he was the one who was the most fleshed out antagonist of the trio. He was so well written that he was brimming with potential! So when they ruthlessly killed him off, I was livid. What was the point of every encounter we have seen up until now? Was it simply supposed to be a clash of ideals? Why flesh him out if you’re not going to utilize his potential growth? Why make him powerful if you’re going to nerf him at the last second? Or after emphasizing how important it is for him to live, why couldn’t they let us see/hear him desperately fight to preserve his soul after he was absorbed into the Neo King?

The list goes on and it hurts to look back on it. I just can’t get over how they managed to chuck all of that out the window in a single episode.

As result of this tragedy, for the past few weeks I spent a lot of time on sorting out my feelings about the latest development. After reflecting on it, I realized I wasn’t angry about Nodoka not hearing him out. It makes perfect sense why she refused to, and we all can agree that she was in her right to. So what really upset me was the way the way they killed Daruizen off. This only clicked for me after I finished watching episode 44, and I will explain why.

Daruizen was an incredibly well written antagonist. They spent so much time fleshing him out, it is only natural that a lot of us would expect great things from him. As result, I think it is fair to say a lot of us were anticipating one of two outcomes for him.

1) Daruizen becoming the True Final Boss

I think this is what a lot of us initially expected, myself included.
Andl I got caught up in tunnel vision of hoping there would be a way to survive because I adored him so much, but I digress.

With how capable Daruizen was, frankly I am shocked that they didn’t bother making him the true final boss. He was the strongest and the smartest antagonist of the bunch. If there was anyone to pull it off, it would be him. Not to mention, I certainly wouldn’t be complaining about it because I’m here for their rivalry, and that would have been a lot more fitting end rather than this utterly pitiful and tragic demise he was subjected to. I can’t put into words how frustrating it was that we didn’t get to at least see Daruizen fight for his life within the Neo King. He was never a character who would resign to his fate. He tried his hardest until the very end– going as far to ask for help when he needed it most. That was also one of the many reasons why I immensely disliked the way Episode 44 panned out. He is an intelligent boy who didn’t care for the Neo King. So he absolutely could have deserted him completely to lay low and weather the storm until the Precure dealt with him. They didn’t have to make him go back with the others. After-all, he witnessed the King consuming Guaiwaru, that horrific scene is more than enough to justify running away and prepare for his next move.

After how everything played out, if I had to choose how I wanted Daruizen to go down, this would be it. Don’t want to make him remorseful for his actions? Make him the true final boss, and have him go out with a bang.

 

2) Daruizen Reflecting on his Actions

This is something that can be left up for debate since the outcome might not have changed much. But would have at least given us some reasonable closure, or at least that is what it would’ve done for me.

In this scenario, nobody can save him except himself.

This outcome actually involved taking everything Daruizen had learned through his encounters with Nodoka, putting him at a crossroad to decide how he wants to proceed. Almost every encounter between them, there were always a clash of ideals, but the most memorable one was in Episode 33.

I don’t know about you, but for me I felt like this episode marked as a potential turning point for Daruizen. And in a way, they did prove that it was because he sought Nodoka out for help after they had this spat:

“By working for others, what do you get? You’re better off thinking only of yourself!”
– Daruizen

“Maybe you can’t understand. But we help and support each other. That’s how we live!”
– Nodoka

That’s why I felt like, the moment he was forsaken by Nodoka, it could have been the perfect catalyst to set Daruizen up to properly reflect on his actions. Now you could argue that he already been there and done that, but my only gripe is that it Daruizen didn’t understand why Nodoka refused to help him until it was too late.

That was why I found it so remarkable that the moment Nodoka listed out the reasons why she didn’t want to, he froze– as though something finally clicked. The problem was that he was not in the position to start reflecting on his actions. It was a do or die, not only the King was out to kill him, but the Precure were too. That’s why it makes perfect sense for him to resume the fight.

So really, if this was to have ever been an option, it was something that needed to be done before he took the Mega Parts The ideal time would have been when Daruizen first sought out help from Nodoka on the street. Had she vented at him the way she did at the fight and then left him in the dust, at the very least Daruizen would have information to work with to reflect on.

This was a necessity because Daruizen needed to hear and come to understand why Nodoka refused to help him for this to even be an option. Had he been told sooner, the writers could have set it up for him reflect on the consequences of his actions while he was hiding in the sewers. They didn’t have to make it so we were watching Daruizen drowning in despair, coming to the conclusion the only way to survive is to take a chance with the Mega Parts.

By putting him at a crossroad, he now has two choices. He can either refuse to acknowledge his wrongdoings, and choose to absorb the Mega Parts in effort to save himself, or he could choose to apologize to Nodoka (because she deserves that much), and decide to help them take down the King without expecting to be forgiven or get anything in return. If they had they done that, then at the very least we can say he was given a fair shot. So then even if they made it so he still decided to resort to the Mega Parts, he reaps what he sows.

Honestly, that’s all I would have liked: The writers giving Daruizen the chance to make a decision that could change his fate. I hate how he was given such a pathetic ending when he was such a fantastic character. With the the way they killed him off just threw everything they built up out the window as if none of it mattered. So of course it hurts like a bitch.

…Also, straying a tad off topic, but I don’t know where else to plug this in: What the hell is the story behind the official merchandise of the Daruizen and Nodoka plushies?!?! (WHICH HAS VOICED LINES BY THE WAY). This was the first time I’ve actually been more engaged with fandom activity so I happened to come across them. (And they are very cute.) But now all I can think of now is dear god, what in the world were they thinking? They were freaking promoted together! I’m sorry, but you cannot tell me that isn’t going to give people a certain idea. If Nodoka was supposed to hate Daruizen then it makes absolutely NO SENSE to even make a product like this with lines that interact with each other! I can’t even wrap my head around it! Either they are trying to profit off of Daruizen’s popularity, the marketing team had an entirely different idea/didn’t get the memo, or the explanation that Daruizen’s tragic fate was all part of the original plan is bullshit, who knows!

Anticlimactic Boss Fight

Last but not least, the second biggest letdown of all: The final fight against the Pathogerm Neo King.
Man this was just frustrating to watch. I was appalled by how underwhelming and lackluster the final boss fight was.

Surely I wasn’t the only one who thought this fight paled in comparison to not just the other fights we have seen earlier on, but also comparison to other series. We wait so bloody long for the King to show up, and this was the best they could do? What a fucking disappointment.

This was probably the worst boss fight I’ve seen from Precure in a while. It just felt so blah. And are you seriously telling me that the girls were all fine and dandy while they were inside of the Neo King? Um excuse me? Weren’t they were supposed to be turned into his food for power, and you’re telling me that they didn’t even have to fight off any guck of a sorts to break free and all? You’re telling me Nodoka just laying there AND AND SOMEHOW THE FIRST ONE TO REGAIN CONSCIOUSNESS AND SHE JUST CHILLS THERE TALKING TO THE KING?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

Um, pardon me, but even though I had expressed worried about Asumi being the one to save the day- it makes absolute no sense that NODOKA was conscious before she was. Maybe if she had Daruizen inside her like Asumi did with Shindoine I would believe it, but NAH. They didn’t even do that or give them a power-up to provide a reason for it, so I’m sorry that just comes across as stupid and lazy to me. Gosh they didn’t even get a final new outfit. Just enhanced rods.

Also may I add how it the Healing Animals just stood there and basically do nothing apart from sending energy with the rest of the gang? It would have been nice to see them fight properly too. Hell, this whole final battle could have been so much more, and it’s a darn shame that it wasn’t.


Final Verdict: 6.5/10
(Edit Note: Tweaked the final score just a tad because I’m split between and I feel better about it this way.)

I gotta say, hella eerie how this series themed around diseases ended up airing during a freaking Pandemic! I mean, what were the odds?

But boy were we in for hella of an adventure. Everything was going along just fine, but then the Pathogerms Pandemic Struck, and Healin’ Good Precure went on hiatus for three months! Once it started again, it was a bit slow and some things felt a little off, but otherwise started to find its stride again, but little did I know I would be taken on such a roller-coaster of emotions.

Even though I was extremely unsatisfied with how they handled some things, make no mistake, that doesn’t mean this show was terrible. In fact Healin’ Good Precure as a whole was great. It was precisely because it started out with so much promise, my excitement led to high expectations. In fact I was so optimistic about this series, I felt like I had finally found one that could contend with my all time favourite, Go! Princess Precure (which, will continue its reign on its throne as my all time favourite Precure series). Hell, I even dared to fantasize about the idea of the things that could be explored in a second season–crazy, I know! I haven’t been this deeply invested in Precure since Go Princess.

Despite how much I loved this series in the beginning, I don’t think I can rate this score any higher than a seven, but I also wouldn’t rate it lower than a six. Healin’ Good Precure had a phenomenal start, but man while it had some amazing moments, the second half of the series (around the time Asumi joined the party) was significantly weaker and the last three episodes leading to the final fight was so poorly arranged, it makes me want to scream.

At this point, I am too emotionally burned out to figure out/debate whether this was truly all part of the original plan or everything was chucked out the window because of the pandemic. Frankly, I don’t have it in me to care what the truth of the matter is anymore. Regardless of the intent, what’s done is done, and unfortunately it left me heartbroken and incredibly frustrated with the outcome.

That being said, would I still recommend watching Healin’ Good Precure?
Considering my reaction in the recent weeks, this may surprise you, but the short answer is: Yes

Despite my personal gripes about the way this series ended, this is still a show I know many can still enjoy and for some, they will be fine with the way things ended. There are so many amazing things to appreciate about Healin’ Good Precure, such as charming characters (be it good or bad), a decent story, intelligent antagonists and LOTS of epic fights (earlier on), oh and did I mention the fantastic soundtrack?! I think it would be fair to say this was definitely one of the better Precure titles among the lot. I’m not sure where I would place it in my rankings because there are a lot of complicated feelings involved, but I do know it at least deserves to be in the Top 5 just for the things it did right.

With that, it’s a wrap for my adventure with Healin’ Good Precure. Thanks for joining me on this emotional roller coaster. It has been a great pleasure to hear all of your thoughts through it all! As promised, I will be doing a first impression on Tropical Rouge Precure, so please look forward to that next week! (I know, I know, I didn’t mention Cure Summer when she made a cameo this episode, but my brain was shut off at that point. I’ll let myself form an opinion on her character next week in her series.)

As for Heartcatch Precure’s coverage status: I have to put it on-hold so please wait a little longer. Due to various circumstances, my hands are tied at the moment. Once everything settles down I will finish up the remaining episodes- we’re almost done with just seven episodes left to complete the 10th Anniversary Coverage! Thank you for your patience!

Eva

Blogging Anime since Summer 2009, & Founder of AngryAnimeBitches Anime Blog

20 thoughts on “Healin’ Good Precure Ep 44 & 45 [FINAL]

  1. Wow. This review is truly almost on the same level as when you wrote the end of ARC-V. I can understand, especially in case of Daruizen. I expected him to at least be the last out of the villain trio to be defeated. It’s been a while since I felt very sorry for an antagonist like Daruizen. And then his relationship with Nodoka, I also expected them to clash and struggle more ever since Daruizen is revealed to be the one responsible for her sickness and then showing what it seems to be a development, but the way it ends feels a waste. If Daruizen cannot be saved, then okay, but at least they should’ve given him a much proper end… I guess I’m also bias when it comes about Daruizen here…

    Maybe I’m not attached to Healing Good Precure as much as I did with ARC-V, but it still kinda hurt. I was hoping it would last longer, at least until 50 episodes. Now, only time can heal this heartbreak.

    By the way, I know this is off topic, but I wanna ask you since I don’t know where else to say. You have played Hakuoki game, right? Did you also play Hakuoki Kyoto Winds and Edo Blossoms versions? I heard they got updated gameplay, another 6 new bachelors, and longer routes, Kazama’s route in particular is longer or so I heard. I want to ask because I’m planning to play the game (I only ever watched the anime version) and maybe you can give me some advice if it’s okay with you?

    1. I’m so sorry it took so long for your comment to get processed! I found it in the spam filter! DX

      Hahahahaha this is what happens when I have a lot of feelings. I think this might be my second or third longest overall review i’ve written to date. ARC-V being the longest because that was 9000+ words ahahahahaha!

      TT ^ TT Yeah Daruizen deserved a better ending, this hurts too much.

      And to answer your question about Hakuouki, yes I also own Kyoto Winds and Edo Blossoms. Funny you say that because I’ve been playing the game recently too. XD What questions would you like to ask? I’ll do my best to answer them!

      Just note that while I completed the PSP version of the game, I haven’t completed KW/EB vita copy completely yet since I haven’t started any of the routes for the new guys. I’ve been replaying the OG dudes first LOL. Why? I don’t know. ROFLMAO. You’d think I’d want to start with the new ones first.

      1. It’s okay. I understand. Spam filter can be a hassle sometimes.

        When Daruizen was just written off like that, it feels like when Yuri and Zarc were out of the picture for me. At least they have a happy ending in a way. Daruizen, however, his end is just so…ARGH! It’s not like I expect him to become a good guy or anything, I at least hoped he will leave the show with a sense of satisfaction or peace.

        For Hakuoki, whose route do you think I should try first? Having only watched the anime, my favorite characters are Hijikata, Kazama, and Okita, so I think I’m going to save them for last. Other than them, who do you think I should try for the first play? And are there certain options that I must very careful to choose?

        1. That’s exactly why I cried so much! TT ^ TT Gosh dang it!

          As for Hakuouki:

          I agree with saving your favourites for last, that’s what I do. (Hijikata and Okita are also my favs <3! I played Okita and then Hijikata, then Kazama afterwards.) If you’re talking route orders, imo there’s no real specifics. It’s pretty flexible so go along as you like. Unless there’s a concrete recommended route order, I typically try starting with the guys that don’t interest me, and gradually work towards my favs. But sometimes for the games with a large cast like this one, I switch it up and starting one I like in between so make sure I don’t burn out.

          That being said, I would recommend at least playing the original set of guys first. The new characters offer a new perspective, so in that regard, it can be better to save them for later.

          So I say during the first playthrough, do it blind and go along with whichever route you find yourself on (unless it’s one of the three you want to save for last. I’ve stopped when I noticed i locked into the route and restarted just so I could save them for later haha!)

          Early on in the common route, certain answers will group you with two or three characters. That’s one way to have a good idea which route you will fall on. There’re so many characters at this point, it’s easy to lose track of which answers draws which set of guys. XD So when it comes down to wanting to find specific characters or you have a general idea which route order you want to go on, I would strongly recommend using a guide just to get yourself locked in. Whether you want to play blind from there on out is up to you.

          As for certain options, let’s just say their lives are in your hands. xD

  2. While the ending wasn’t the best overall i liked healing good and i glad they were able to handle it and give it decent ending despite the covid and hitaus obstacles and i respect them since they did the best they could. Also eva about tropical rogue. If you liked smile precure i think you might like tropical rogue since it gives vibes of comedic season like smile which was funny.

    1. If it’s going to be anything like Smile, then I may not cover it for long. It’s very difficult to write about series that focus on comedies. Most recently, I made the difficult decision to drop my coverage YGO SEVENS for that exact reason (and I love that show). I had also similar problem with Smile Precure as well that’s why I never finished covering it.

      In hindsight of that, if I end up choosing not to cover Tropical Rouge, then maybe after I finish covering Heartcatch and if I have the time energy to do so, I’ll pick up a different Precure title. It is something I am open to doing because I would like to rewatch all the shows I haven’t watched in a long time and review how I would rank them. I’m curious to see which ones aged better than others, and whether my tastes has changed as well. I think it would be fun to do.

  3. Also Something tells me redeeming Daruizen was not in the cards after Covid struck; no way would they redeem a ‘disease’ in this current age and time.

  4. Not gonna lie, you have a lot more positives than I do. I thought the series started out weak but enjoyable, got good, and then tanked once Earth was introduced. In fact, if there was one word I’d use to describe the second half of the show it’d be: boring. While the episodes focusing on the main trio and plot were nice they were very flawed. I also really didn’t like episode 42 as while I don’t think Nodoka needed to sacrifice herself, her choosing not to help Daruizen at all didn’t sit right with me. Not to mention the final arc was wasted potential all around. What was the point of Guaiwaru betraying King Byo-Gen if it was going to be undone two episodes later? Batetemoda was already wasted potential, they didn’t have to waste Guaiwaru too. Even then, the final battle was lackluster and none of the emotional beats hit home for me.

    Honestly, I would never put this in the Top 5. Those slots are reserved for Splash Star, Yes! Precure 5, Heartcatch, Go! Princess, and Hugtto to me. Smile is my favorite season and even it doesn’t get a slot in my Top 5. Now, I haven’t seen Futari Wa, its sequel, or the second half of Star Twinkle but of all the seasons I have seen of Precure Healin’ Good easily goes at the bottom of my list. Like, Doki and GoGo have always been my least favorite seasons and this is worse than the both of them in my opinion.

    That said, Precure is still my favorite anime franchise period and I love what I’ve seen of Tropical-Rouge so far. I have high hopes that it’ll be good.

    1. Yeah it really sucked that there was no way to help Daruizen at all. :\ It didn’t have to be Nodoka, there were ways around it. I wished the writers didn’t do him dirty like that.

      Your good point about Guaiwaru can also be applied to the King. He was gone for the entire show and it’s easily undone with what felt like almost minimal effort. The final battle was just awful, seriously.

      One day if I have time, I really would like to go rewatch all the shows I haven’t watched in a long time and review how I would rank them. I’m curious to see which ones aged better than others, and whether my tastes has changed as well. Unfortunately I don’t have time for that right now, but maybe in the future because I think it would be fun to do.

  5. It’s totally okay that you’re not into Healin Good as a show. Everybody has their preferences. I personally feel HG is one of the best seasons to come out in years, and any flaws it has is definitely because of COVID, for sure, so a lot of that was out of Toei’s control. That being said, I do think the final episode bringing in Cure Summer out of nowhere just felt lazy, especially since all she does is fall on one of the monsters and not even do anything! So these final episode cameos of new Cures just feel forced and lazy to me. She was completely unneeded there. Granted, out of all the seasons, Heartcatch will always be my favorite because its villains had more depth, had a better finale, and all of its characters had great development, but for me, HealPre is my second favorite season because even with all the problems it had because of the hiatus, I feel it tried to make the best of what it had, and I didn’t hate any of the characters! (While I do agree that the show could have done more with Asumi, I don’t feel she’s nearly as OP as, say, Haa-chan from Mahou Tsukai. God, I REALLY don’t like Haa-chan after she became a Cure).

    1. Oh absolutely. Had it not been for this crappy ending I absolutely would have put it as second or third place in my list of favourite Precures, it really depends on how much better it could have turned out.

      I have never been a fan of these Precure cameos in the epilogue either, but this one oh man like you said, was so lazily done. That’s why my brain totally shut off.

      O_o Dear lord, Haa-chan is more OP than Asami? I haven’t heard good things about that one so I am reaaaaallllly glad I dropped that one as as soon as she became a precure.

  6. Thank you for this final HealPre review. You summed my thought on this exactly.

    What I do wonder is if TOEI decides to do another Precure Light Novel with the original plot.
    Although that didn’t one for a good while but with the way this season played out, it would be actually pretty good to try again.

    1. Man if they were to release something like that for the original plot and it has a better ending, I WOULD HAVE THE MIGHTY NEED FOR IT!

  7. Thanks for your coverage. I’ve mostly checked out of the other Precure forums because they became a bit-too spoiler-centric for my taste, but it’s nice to hear someone else’s thoughts and learn things I might have missed.

    I’m glad I watched this series, but they really fumbled the ending. I’m sure a lot of that was Covid related, what with the unexpected hiatus, having to shuffle the plot around (although, in hindsight I’m not sure they even did that because we got some untimely holiday-ish epsodes), and tweaking (sanitizing?) the ultimate message of the show. I don’t know that Daruizen surviving was ever in the cards, but I would guess that got scrapped once the pandemic went global because it probably wasn’t considered a good message to show sympathy to a humanoid germ. (Which is a shame, because they could have made a plot-line that made sense scientifically, but for simplicity’s sake was probably scrapped in the interest of public health.)

    As far as the last two episodes are concerned, I was just relieved the Earth didn’t single-handedly eliminate the King. The win still felt too easy – I’m pretty sure they didn’t even use a different animation than the stock footage! At least I got a chuckle out of everyone in the town knowing that they’re the Precure but keeping their mouths shut. This last episode was…a mess. Maybe I’m imaging things, but it felt to me like they using the monkey to stand in for the elderly population, grumbling about how the younger generations are ignorant of the consequences of their actions. I’m probably overreaching, but it was a little too preachy for my tastes.

    Cure Summer, what Cure Summer? She came, she fell, she got sucked back out of the (plot) hole in the sky without doing anything of significance. She was shoehorned into the episode so badly that I wish they had just left her out.

    It looks like makeup is going to play a big role in the next series which leaves me feeling conflicted. The last two times I remember it being a significant part of a transformation (Happiness Charge’s group power-up and Cure Ace) it fell flat for me. I know it’s not unusual for girls to want to play with or experiment with make-up, but after such a positive self-care message in this series, it feels like such whiplash to market the importance of wearing make-up to elementary-age girls. Combined with the poor cameo, I’m not looking forward to the start of a Precure series for the first time in years, maybe ever.

    1. I will give tropical rogue a chance since I love funny seasons. Also I think the theme is the sea and the only the transformation is makeup.

  8. I honestly liked your posts related to Healin Good chapters and as you said with the Daruizen treatment, it was horrible. When I saw the raw of chapter 41 I was in shock and denial, then I saw it with the subtitles and it continued like that …
    In fact I don’t even forgive the main writer of Healin Good (Yes, Junko Komura is the cause of Daruizen being destined for what we saw, in fact in an Animage interview this year she commented that Daruizen was designed to die from the episode 1 to teach the lesson because he was an egotist who looked from above and sought consolation when it suited him And that for her there is no forgiveness in a villain) … indeed, for that reason Nodoka falls as a top favorite as much as Cure leader as a character in the franchise.
    I understand Nodoka the reason for his actions at that time, I say, the message he gives is strong: No matter how kind you are, the well-being of one must come first, be it physical and mental as well as the fact that it’s NOT always feasible forgive those who hurt and it’s okay to feel hatred, resentment and etc. What’s more, I would have applauded it if it were at a different time and different context.
    I understand that Daruizen is one of those who does not at least deserve remediation for his actions and all that.
    But here they both fucked her enormously. Why? If Daruizen had not despaired and measured well his words to ask for help, if Nodoka had not been carried away by fear, resentment and hatred and had listened to his rational side to at least allow him to hear why he wanted help, NOTHING THIS HAD HAPPENED! The world went to hell, the king got his power up and until the moment he tells Nodoka how hypocritical she was for her declaration to protect everyone from those who do harm when she contradicts herself ignoring what she caused by leaving carry with resentment.

    The last chapters were hard for me, I suffered to see the decline of something that started well, which had the potential to be on par with Heartcatch and Go Princess but not even that happened due to bad decisions of the staff, I would say the pandemic but that would be an excuse to empty knowing the havoc that main writer bone Komura has done with Sentais series. Healin good will be forgettable to me, except for its opening and ending 1, which are one of my favorites …
    Nodoka was put down not only because of what she did with Daruizen but she made a mistake that she ironically insisted on defending when it was Hinata’s chapters “We are a team and as such we must face the problems together” Neither did she and only Rabirin said something that was feasible … It may be the Cure realistic leader who leaves the cliche of happy everything to see pink which is applauded but that she caused the end of the world out of resentment, that I will never forgive.
    By the way, the fact that an environmental theme that ONLY HAPPENED TO GIVE IT AT THE END makes it ridiculous that they only used or rather took advantage of the pandemic theme for those messages (I don’t know whether to applaud it or not) than to handle the thematic that should be.
    And the marketing with the Daruizen and Nodoka stuffed animals …. the culprit here is also the writer bone Komura. From what I found out (although I don’t know if it’s true or not), the opening crew only knew about the plot until chapter 28, which is when they reveal the origin of Daruizen! in fact they even thought there was shiping since everyone thought that was Komura’s intention. In the end, it turned out to be a terrible move on the satff’s part as Komura concealed the true intentions.
    I applaud your analysis for Healin and with Tropical, I want to avoid disappointment again so my expectations will be 0%
    My score for Healin is: 6/10

    1. Thank you very much, I’m glad you enjoyed them.
      It always sucks to see a series you love so much go downhill, especially when it happens at the very end. 🙁

  9. I say the reason why they didn’t focus so much of the impact of Nodoka’s illness is because so many kids were going through that either themselves or others around them and while, yes it’s good to see a character go through something similar and staying strong to the end, it also can scar kids and backfire really badly. They had issues before with the villains in say Mahou Tsukai Precure, deeming the later villains too scary for kids thus they all out destroyed them and brought the funnier villains back. They were already taking sudden risks and yeah maybe having the character miraculously survive can harm kids into thinking that’s how it works in real life, I think kids are smarter than we give them credit. Nodoka’s story is more so a message of hope than realistic fighting to survive. That sometimes, a good expected thing can happen so don’t believe all hope is gone. We have to remember this series IS for kids that are just learning how to count passed ten and maybe not even that. Not to say that kids deserve bad writing or can’t handle dark but it’s what the studio tries to keep in mind.

    I actually do like Nodoka a lot, she’s one of my favorites even and the reason why especially is that she gain the courage to tell Daru off. I was harassed in a dirty way (I’ll let you fill in what I mean by that) by the boys at my school and never got the courage to tell them off and stand up for myself. They even told other kids I was dating them. So I see Nodoka telling Daruzen that she doesn’t want to help him, doesn’t feel bad for it because what he did was show no remorse and hurt people and made her suffer, it does make me wish I had known Nodaka back then and told those boys off when I could. She’s definitely a role model for kids, even if her illness wasn’t done in a realistic way, that’s kinda typical anyway in Precure. Illness stays a mystery or is solved somehow, they don’t show that much of a character suffering because they don’t want to scare kids and boom they’re usually feeling better at the end! Kids shows have talked about illnesses before but given this time period, it’s super duper delicate subject.

    As for Daruzen realizing it was too late, well it’s sorta like going back to the realism thing. While you think it maybe more realistic for Nodoka to be heavier impacted by her illness (which I think she was enough really, they did show it had impacted her quite a bit, more than she was willing to let on cause kids cover up easily their emotions.), I think it’s only realistic for Daru to realize his actions when it was too late cause that’s how sadly most scenarios work. The tormentor doesn’t get his/hers come up its until it’s too late and I think that was to teach further that those who hurt you may sadly never change. Had they not redeemed villains especially in Hugtto so much beforehand, I think, maybe they would have tried to save him. So with this they decided to change it up especially since Nodoka is the victim and they wanted to justify and push the message the importance of saying no and denying those who just do nothing but hurt you.

    I really did like Daruzen. I was a fan of him but I also couldn’t help but agree with the decision to kill him off and show some folks don’t change.

    For me, I enjoyed the ride. It wasn’t a perfect series but I think it was decent enough.

    1. Thank you for sharing your story about why Nodoka is a special character to you. It serves as a good example as to why this series, despite its flaws, it shouldn’t be completely overlooked. There are merits, and for some people, they will be able to gain some something from it.

      1. from the opening song i feel like tropical rogue will be cheery and lively fun season unlike the previous one which was serious tone so i hope you will fins the first episode funny

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