It definitely feels like a good day to be Ryu fan today because he SHINED in this episode. So many things went into the lead up to Ryu performing on behalf of Trigger on his own. At the start of the season… many months ago, Ryu was noted for not being able to stand out as much as Tenn and Gaku. So of course we would have to get a follow up from that mini arc in the most GRANDEST fashion possible! But more on that later.
The group separates to try and find where Tsukumo took the Trigger members and despite it being such a stressful and serious moment, there were just so many moments that made me laugh because of how absurd it was. Like, guys… THIS IS A SERIOUS SITUATION STOP MAKING ME LAUGH. We start with Re:vale up to shenanigans by tricking the front desk guy about leaking juicy info… only to tie him up and interrogate him. I absolutely lost it when Yuki just slams the trophy in front of him as a threat to get him to talk. Yuki and Sogo just exhibit the same killer energy all with a smile XDDDD. Though I think the group that had me laughing the hardest and caused the most amount of hilarity with their antics. Especially when Tamaki and Sogo “glowered” at that one guy on Yamato’s prompting. And the three of them just coming in with sunglasses on… there were just so many parts with them where I had to pause the episode because I was losing it. Also there are times where I just forget that Yamato is a good actor so when he starts using his abilities I’m always taken aback for a moment lol.
And while all this hilarity ensues, of course Nagi is the one to find and rescue the first Trigger member. Considering he played such a large part in stopping the terrorist attack back during the Trigger concert in season 1 it was very unsurprising that he was able to handle the situation all on his own because of course. Though I did have a good laugh at how he actually learned the Okinawan dialect after Ryu bothered him about it earlier in the season XDDDD.
But poor Ryu, guy has been going through the wringer the hardest out of everyone so far and Torao and Ryo just have to rub everything in his face. Ryu is by far the nicest and understanding character in this cast and to see people use that against him hurts. And then Torao flaunts how he’s planning to use all of the information he shared against him. Ryu probably felt so betrayed, especially since he confided and thought he could trust him. As someone as kind as Ryu, it’s really sad to see how far he’s been pushed and is punished for his kind hearted and trusted nature. Despite finding out he was being lead around by the nose, he only snapped when he found out that Torao was only using Hanamaki. The fact that he got angry on someone else’s behalf and not for himself… ugh, Ryu is just too good T^T.
Tenn’s rescue ended up being a bit more complicated in regards to his relationship with Riku (because it always is). Not to mention he was gonna get TASERED??? Mitsuki and Riku find where Tenn was being held and man, this rescue mission sure had a lot of conflicting feelings. On one hand.. My BOY. MY BOY IS SO GOOD. LOOK AT HIM FIGHT. Seeing Mitsuki knock out that guy just made me feel like a proud mother and I was like rooting for him as if I were watching a kids soccer game. I do tend to forget how strong Mitsuki is at times since there was one Rabbit Chat that said he actually pulled Riku AND Nagi to shore when both were drowning. I really shouldn’t have underestimated the short guys lol.
Despite the high I felt for Mitsuki just holding his own, the good feelings kind of shot back down when Tenn’s inner parent started showing. Here I thought he was gonna hug him… only for him to slap him instead. I felt so caught off guard, but even more so seeing just how genuinely emotional Tenn got from Riku pretending to have an attack. It sheds a little more light on Tenn’s feelings regarding Riku’s condition. He obviously cares so much for Riku that he was going to cooperate if they just helped Riku during his “attack.” Riku’s attacks seem to be a very triggering thing for Tenn and I can only imagine how it must have been to endure hearing your family member suffer without knowing if they will make it and you can’t do anything. He’s desperate and that may have been the main reason as to why he went with Kujo in the first place. I completely understand why Tenn acted the way that he did. Did that make what he did right, no, he definitely could have handled that better. But it definitely seemed like it was a stress and anxious reaction.
The last rescue team probably had the funniest things going on, but there was some underlying tension especially when it came to Sogo. I’m not entirely sure why it mattered at this point, but it could just be groundwork for what is to come in the future. Early on, Tamaki expresses sadness and concern over Sogo acting and sounding like a corporate head, something he most likely picked up from his dad. And then when he was really anxious, he couldn’t let go of the replica sword he used to threaten the guards. While I feel this didn’t fit with what was going on, it was sweet to see how far Tamaki and Sogo have come with Tamaki trying to help Sogo relax when he was in a high stressed state.
Despite Tenn and Gaku having been rescued, they weren’t going to make it back to perform, leaving it up to Ryu to handle the performance on his own. I was wondering why Ryu was the only one who had a solo version of the Shine on the Sea song and well… OBVIOUSLY PLOT REASONS STRIKE AGAIN. It feels like there is a lot going against Ryu at this moment with people believing him to be a creep and a terrible person because of his “scandal” with Hanamaki, but even then, he’s still willing to go out on behalf of Trigger. And when he was giving his speech to Ryo that even if he gets knocked down, he’ll still get back up because he knows there are people who are willing to support him. And while he may seem to be on his own, they are still there with him in spirit. Which ends up ringing true in the end where there are still fans who were rooting for him despite the negative talk buzzing around him. Ryu is such a strong person. To have the courage to go out on stage when most people are against him and carry himself with such passion and spirit despite not knowing if he’ll even get an applause at the end. And I’m so glad they finally showed a lot of the fans who still supported him and Trigger. Essentially speaking over the negative gossip and giving him the applause he deserved by the end. He truly is the heart of Trigger.
I also love how the prerecorded echoes of Tenn and Gaku’s voices in the song made it seem like they were still there on stage with him even if they were not physically.
Ryu’s voice actor did a wonderful job just portraying the strength and resolve in his singing. I love how the start of his performance essentially mirrored what his voice actor did in the second live. Seeing the two scenes side by side in a fanmade video was really cool to see. It’s so nice to see how much the live performances inspire the performances animated in the anime. Though I wish they animated Ryu’s performance more. I understand they would want to save the budget for the group performances, but this felt like a pretty big moment that deserved a bit more than just still frames.
I’m surprised that his words seemed to effect Torao of all people. The guy has yet to give any visible response when interacting with anyone. He didn’t even bat an eye when Sogo essentially burned him near the start of the first part of the season. It’s hard to say exactly what struck a cord with Torao since we hardly know his circumstances or backstory. However, I’m sure it will come up again in the future.
Though I think the thing that surprised me most was Yaotome papa’s turnaround this season. Despite his terrible first impression from the first season, there have been hints here and there that there’s a lot more to him than what he shows on the surface. I don’t know about everyone else, but I’m here for his development. Watching him over the course of the seasons made me mildly interested in him as a character since as I said before, there’s definitely a lot more going on with him that meets the eye. And it eventually accumulated in him laying down his pride and humbled himself to Ryu, the one that he had the most critique towards at the start of the season and even complimented him that his performance was good all with a freaking smile on his face. To say the least, I was not expecting this development but I’m happy for it. While he is far from being redeemed, he still has quite a lot of things to make up for, but he’s definitely taking steps in the right direction. And I’m honestly very interested to see how he deals with Ryo now.
Another great episode with a surprising amount of hilarity sprinkled through out. Though we probably needed some lightheartedness after the stress from the first episode. There seemed to be also a lot of set up for certain characters such as Sogo, Tenn and Torao and I’m curious to see how it all plays out. I’m also glad that Ryu was finally able to take the spotlight though maybe not under the best of circumstances, he still made an impact. Hopefully this performance will help elevate his status in the public’s eye though I’m sure there is still quite a lot of work to be done before Trigger is put back in a good light.