The Promised Neverland vs. The Rising of the Shield Hero. Dororo (2019) vs. Mob Psycho 100 II.
Round 2. FIGHT!
EvilBob: Ah. It’s finally time to put you in your place.
Voyager: Oh. You’re gonna just give me the trophy, right here? Cool. I’ll get my camera.
EvilBob: No! C’mon, dude! Work with me, here! It’s no fun if only one of us does the grandstanding thing.
Voyager: But watching you somehow make an even bigger fool of yourself is pure gold. I wouldn’t want to rob you of your spotlight.
EvilBob: Oh, don’t worry. I’ll have my spotlight… as the winner.
Voyager: Heh. Sure.
Bracket 1: The Promised Neverland/The Rising of the Shield Hero
Voyager: All right. Let’s get this one out of the way. Tate no Yuusha no Nariagari-
Voyager: …Excuse me?
EvilBob: I mean… can you list a reason why it’d beat The Promised Neverland?
Voyager: Oh, I dunno. Maybe the fact that things actually happen outside of two episodes?
EvilBob: True. A whole lot happens in Shield Hero. Hey, remember when that awesome antagonist of yours did that really awful thing? Or when that one villain totally beat up that one guy? Oh! Or how about when the big bad moved the plot forward in that huge way!
Voyager: I… well… yeah, all that was pretty awesome… heh… heheheh…
EvilBob: But wait, there’s more! Remember when Naofumi denounced slavery, altogether? That was a totally awesome moment, riiiight?
Voyager: … *cough*
EvilBob: Aw. What’s wrong, dude? You’re looking kinda pale… well… I mean… you would, if you weren’t… um… hm.
Voyager: Yeah, you might wanna abandon ship on that one, altogether…
EvilBob: Yeeeah… kinda like what you have to do with this anime, right?
Voyager: Well, what’s The Promised Neverland done that was oh so amazing, anyway?
EvilBob: I’m glad you asked! Remember the tension from finding out there was a traitor among them? How about the absolute fear of discovering what’s happening, to begin with? And what about all those moments bringing the characters closer together? Ooh! And the strategy was all really something else, riiight?
Voyager: I think the word you’re looking for is ‘boring’.
EvilBob: And then came the payoff. So. Did ya see Episode 8 yet?
EvilBob: Oh, the stuff with Sister Krone was great. But now we’re getting to some real nailbiting repercussions. They and Mom are officially open about their intentions, there’s a new obstacle in their way with Emma’s newly broken leg, and Norman’s ’bout to go bye bye. It’s all getting really good, now.
EvilBob: Remind me how Shield Hero handled the tension in its eighth episode?
Voyager: It… uh…
EvilBob: Didn’t it fake the audience out by making them think Filo was dead using, of all things, some random side boss?
Voyager: It… well…
EvilBob: And it decided to use that to try to give us a really heavy moment and even show us his Curse powers?
Voyager: It… but…
EvilBob: The show seems to be pretty crap at handling tension, huh? And its pacing. Yikes. Oh, and let’s not forget his other job.
EvilBob: Really, this show should be called The Rising of the Shield Janitor. Seeing how all he’s really done, so far, is clean up the other heroes’ messes.
EvilBob: I think that about says it all. The winner is The Promised Neverland.
Bracket 2: Dororo (2019)/Mob Psycho 100 II
EvilBob: And now to secure both spots in the fina-
Voyager: Mob wins.
EvilBob: Wha-? We haven’t even talked about-!
Voyager: Episode 5. Episode 7. Episode 8. Take your pick.
EvilBob: Three episodes can’t win you this! Dororo had a really awesome, emotionally driven episode too, you know!
Voyager: Oh, it drove my emotions, all right. Drove them right away from the show.
EvilBob: You’re just saying that because you’re sensitive. You’ve even admitted that, yourself!
Voyager: I am. But that actually factors into nothing more than my bad mood. That doesn’t affect my ability to think. Give me some credit. And having thought about it… nah, mate. It was dumb.
EvilBob: I bet you’re totally-
Voyager: I swear to god, if you tell me I’m “missing the point,” I’m throttling your watch lists for the rest of the year. Look. I understand entirely what they were going for… they just f–k’d it up. They were making a statement about how good intentions don’t always lead to positive results and they can, in fact, have consequences. And, that’d be perfectly fine as the Aesop of the story. Exceeept it wasn’t her good intent that got her, and several children killed. It was her blatant stupidity. And if it was more about considering the consequences of your good intentions, then I’m under no obligation to feel bad for her. Full stop.
EvilBob: But she was desperate!
Voyager: Uh-uh. There’s a difference between Desperate and Dumbass. You can be desperate without doing something so unequivocally stupid. Period. I can even write an easier solution to this without her death being her own damn fault and therefore making the entire situation work. She doesn’t try to serve both armies despite being actively warned not to do it by children, and the one she is serving gets paranoid and kills her and the kids anyway. Boom. The entire scenario still happens and now it isn’t so completely and utterly of her own doing. Same outcome. Same message. And arguably better tragedy points, because then I can’t blame her.
EvilBob: …Well… um… everything else, though?
Voyager: Oh. The rest of the show’s pretty cool, I guess. Kinda “monster of the week,” though. The stuff about Hyakkimaru becoming more human and whatnot is pretty good. And aside from me wanting to tell her to shut the hell up after Mio’s death (seriously. that never makes it better. it only makes it worse), I like Dororo. So yeah. That’s all fine and dandy.
EvilBob: Aha! So you admit-!
Voyager: That Mob does basically all of that better? Managing to deliver strong, emotional stories without resorting to cheap tricks like killing characters off?
EvilBob: Wait. What? No, I meant-!
Voyager: How about the way it’s steadily showed Mob’s character growth? And, holy crap, Reigen’s character development. And all of that is the light stuff. Or are you really going to tell me that the action in Dororo even compares to Mob’s?
Voyager: Choose your words wisely. Episode 5.
Voyager: Yeah, I think we’re done here. Mob wins.
THE FINAL BRACKET
The Promised Neverland/Mob Psycho 100 II
Voyager: And there it is.
EvilBob: Hold on to your butts. This one’s gonna be close.
Voyager: Is it? Honestly, I just think it’s kinda cute that The Promised Neverland is going to try to compete with Mob Psycho.
EvilBob: It’s as they say, dude. Life finds a way.
Weekly Evil Line-Up
EvilBob: Again. Not dropping anything from my list. Still covering everything.
Weekly Anime Redux Line-Up
Voyager: *stares at Shield Hero*
Voyager: …nothin’. My list isn’t changing. Yet. Shield Hero gets moved into the Non-TKO category.
Voyager: And that’s that. The Semifinals have come to an end and there’s only one round left.
EvilBob: With all this buildup, The Promised Neverland better fire off like a cannon.
Voyager: Against Mob? You’d better pray it’s more like a railgun.
EvilBob: I can’t wait to wipe that smug look from your… to remove the smug tone from your… to erase that smugness from your… text?
Voyager: Don’t hurt yourself, bud.
EvilBob: Shut up, Chris.
Voyager: Thanks for reading, folks. Keep up the Awesome.
EvilBob: And Keep it Classy.
Voyager: Take Care.