And then there were three.
Voyager: It’s that time again!
EvilBob: Indeed. Time to separate the gems from the… slightly… less shiny rocks. That are also still pretty. But, you know… not as much.
Voyager: Ahaha! That didn’t go anywhere.
EvilBob: Shut up. So. This is it. We’re down to three shows.
Voyager: And three episodes left before the end!
EvilBob: Come. Let us decide the fates of these fine offerings. This… Is the Winter 2020 Anime TKO!
Voyager: Oh, well, you said my thing.
Voyager: You know. Usually I’m that one who’s all energetic and cute and I get to introduce the TKO and then you’re all macho and hammy and finish the intro with a big, overblown “Battle Royale Edition!”
EvilBob: You… you didn’t say it right.
EvilBob: I mean… you can’t just get away with that dinky little “Battle Royale Edition!” You have to really dig deep, down in your diaphragm, ya know? Gotta summon all that machismo. Build it up and unleash it like a shout from the Dovahkiin, himself (or herself). BATTLE ROYALE EDITION!!! See? Like that.
Voyager: *clapping* Ooooooh! Bravisimo! Encore! Encore!
EvilBob: Well, I dunno…
Voyager: Oh, but you do it so well!
EvilBob: I mean, I don’t want to overstay my welcome.
Voyager: Well, if you’re sure-
EvilBob: BATTLE ROYALE EDITION!!!!!
Voyager: Ahaha! Yaaay!
1 – Jibaku Shounen Hanako-kun
EvilBob: So, um… Voyager.
EvilBob: Would you consider getting kidnapped a hobby? A pastime, maybe?
Voyager: Heeeh~? Nope! I’d consider it awful luck!
EvilBob: And what about getting kidnapped twice within two episodes.
Voyager: Bonus Points!
EvilBob: It’s a game?!
Voyager: This episode was fun! Nice little hints of character stuff, sprinkled in with a healthy dash of humor!
EvilBob: And one really dark conclusion.
Voyager: Things ’bout to get intense, yo! Ahahaha!
2 – Runway de Waratte
EvilBob: Dang it, Runway!
Voyager: Hmm? Shounen blood getchu again?
EvilBob: Every freakin’ time!
Voyager: That’s the power of a good old fashioned tournament arc! We’re given the time to care about all the characters and their plights!
EvilBob: True. Understanding the reasons everyone wants to win really helps make the whole thing more tense. And it also makes the hype way more effective, in the long run.
Voyager: Right-o! Which makes the emotional payoffs even more satisfying! …mostly.
Voyager: Eeheehee… Weeeeell. There is one thing. Unfortunately, the show’s also pretty rushed. I dunno how much it jumps around, but there are a looot of times where it feels like it’s adding stuff outta nowhere.
EvilBob: Oh, you’re right. Like that thing with the middle school sister. The tall one. There wasn’t really any lead-up to that. Like… at all. So suddenly getting a big emotional moment for her felt weird.
Voyager: Right! I dunno if this is actually the case, but it feels like they skipped over some parts in the manga that give those parts more context and rushed together some little mini-montages of backstory to fill in the blanks! It’s not as much of a problem, early on, but the later it gets, the more noticeable it is!
EvilBob: True. But it was still a pretty overall solid episode.
Voyager: Oh, definitely!
3 – Itai no wa Iya nano de Bougyoryoku ni Kyokufuri Shitai to Omoimasu.
Voyager: Bridge episode!
EvilBob: Yeah, pretty much. An episode to just get all the important players to their starting positions for the big finale.
Voyager: Poor Sally, Hard-Carrying so much she tuckered herself out. Heehee.
EvilBob: The rest of the team was great, though. I like it when the action scenes actually have a little more context. Some of the last few were pretty random. Fun but random. They led to stuff, sure, but they came out of nowhere. Action scenes where the fights have more purpose is great. Makes things actually more tense. Like with Sally’s predicament and the twins holding down the fort against one of the top players.
Voyager: Yup! The action wasn’t quite as bombastic, this time, but it was still fun! And I have a feeling we’re about to see some big things in the last two episodes!
EvilBob: We better.
Voyager: It really couldn’t be any other moment.
EvilBob: All the emotion in the episode – heck, throughout most of the show – was building to it. And the payoff was beautifully touching.
Choice Screen Grab
Voyager: Ahaha! Brutal!
EvilBob: Not gonna lie. That even hurt my feelings.
Voyager: Eh? Offended by proxy?
Voyager: It’s always amazing how Shounen can manage to turn the simplest, tiniest lines into ones with so much meaning and weight.
EvilBob: Sally still hard-carried, buuut…
Voyager: All good plans need the execution to back it up! And Maple coming to save the day-
Voyager: Ahaha! That’s my thing, silly! But yeah! Maple’s superheroics were fun! Now she’s come to conquer! Team Maple! Also… Superhero Landing!
Voyager: And that’s all for this week!
EvilBob: Like we said, no scores until the very end, from here on out. Don’t worry, we have everything rated. We’re just keeping things close to the chest.
Voyager: Or far, in your case… because of your stomach.
Voyager: You’re a big boi.
EvilBob: I got it.
Voyager: Ahahaha! So, anyway, that’s all! Thanks, as always, for reading!
EvilBob: And letting us waste your time.
Voyager: Keep up the Awesome!
EvilBob: And Keep it Classy.
Voyager: Take Care!