The second episode of the seven-episode Pokemon Twilight Wing’s miniseries, Training, focuses on the fighting Gym leader Bea. After a humiliating loss to Galar Champion Leon, she heads to the Wild Area to train. Bea is a young girl with grey hair and eyes. She’s an expert in Galar karate and appears to be quiet serious. She arrives in the dusty wild area. Accompanied by her Machop, Machoke, and Machamp she begins her training. First, they battle (off-screen) against a wild Rhydon.
The training consists of exercise, lifting rocks, long-distance running and even sparring with Machamp. Considering the fact that Machamp is a Pokemon capable of “moving mountains with one hand,” watching Bea spar with him was impressive. While resting in a cave, they become trapped. Without her phone (she dropped it) she explores the rest of the cave. Realizing that she’s been selfish, she finally learns to rely on her Pokemon. Together they manage to escape the cave.
Despite the short length of these episodes they manage complete an entire story arc. It’s not really necessary to know Bea’s entire backstory to see how determined she is. Throughout the episode, she changes. While I liked this episode, a small part of me wanted to see more battles. However, I think this series is supposed to focus more on the human characters. The Pokemon themselves feel more realistic. Looking at the emotions on the face Machop was particularly effective. Finally, the animation remains stellar making Pokemon: Twilight Wings a must-watch miniseries.
Hinata and Kageyama are greeted by their fellow teammates. They are all interested in what happened at the camps. Yachi-san puts green tape on the net. She explains that she’s splitting the net into nine parts. The separation is designed to help the team with their serving. While Hinata and Kageyama were off at camp, the rest of Karasuno has been working on serving better. With the team heading into Nationals they will need to counter jump float servers. After the practice, Hinata asks Kageyama what he meant. He explains that “his current jump is like ‘boing boing’ and it’s his job to act as the decoy by running all over the court.” Kageyama believes that Hinata can jump higher.
Kageyama tries to get Hinata to “use the balls of his feet.” Hinata finally manages to shift his weight properly, but he’s interrupted by Daichi who yells at them through the windows. The following day Ukai asks Kageyama about his time at the training camp. Kageyama is still concerned with the “Goody Two-shoes” comment he received from one of the players. Ukai tells him not to be bothered by the comment. Eventually, the Date Tech team arrives. They are intense and thank team Karasuno for inviting them. Ukai notes that Date Tech has “blocks that are easily the best in the prefecture and may be worthy of being on a national level.”
The game begins
The starting players begin the game, with Onagawa serving. Despite using Hinata as a decoy, team Karasuno is unable to get past the blockers. Date Tech used a “bunch shifting.” Ukai explains that “the bunch block works by the players bunching together in the center so they can move wherever they need to when they see where the set will go with as many blockers as they need.” The downside is that “this method is that they may not be able to get a block up in a time when faced with a fast attack at either end of the court.” Hinata and Kageyama are frustrated by the ability of Date Tech to block their spikes.
Hinata serves, as Tsukishima subs in. Date Tech manages to continue to dominate with their superior blocking. Despite the pressure of facing such blocking, Kageyama is excited about the challenge. During the next rally, Futakuchi is able to get a feint shot over Karasuno. However, Nishinoya manages to use his “Rolling Thunder” to make a receive. Even though he’s praised for his receive, Kageyama shocks him by yelling that he’s “in the way.” I am happy to see Haikyuu return to the games. Obviously that’s the point of this series. However, I missed watching the games from start to finish. Regardless, I like the dynamics of these matches. I am curious to see how Karasuno manages to overcome the blocking of Date Tech if they do at all.
Episode 18 of My Hero Academia starts with Mina Ashido showing off her dance moves. Izuku assuming that her dancing helps with her fighting tries to learn along with Yuga Aoyama. He’s not great. While I found this episode to be mildly funny, I’m not the least bit excited about the “school festival.” However, the explanation of why it’s important from Shota makes since. I get the impression that Kohei was predicting that narrow-minded fans like might not love this arc. Anyway, Shota points out that the festival is not really for the heroes but the other departments like general and business. Class 1-A decides that they will dance with live music.
Eri is a girl that has only known abuse. It’s reasonable that she wouldn’t have much to smile about. Izuku and Mirio see her at the hospital. With her energy level’s low her Quirk won’t function so she’s not a threat. She apologizes for the trouble she caused them. Eri remains ignorant of Sir Nighteye’s death. To cheer her up Izuku invites her to the School Festival.
It is I, Gentle
The police watch a surveillance video of a convenience store robbery. The new villain is Gentle. Dressed in fancy clothes, slicked-back hair, and a handlebar mustache. He seems polite and well manner for a villain. He has a subordinate, La Brava, but it was unclear where she was. Before he escapes with the money he’s stopped by five heroes. He defeats them off-camera. The goal of La Brava and Gentle is to become infamous through social media.
Robbing the store didn’t get many views. Gentle decides that attacking the School Festival will get him his fame. I like Gentle and La Brava. They’re weird in a good way. I doubt the two of them can take on all the heroes at U.A., even though he defeated five heroes single handly.
Kaiman and Nikaido prepare to enter the Magic-User World. Kaiman puts on an all-white outfit with rabbit ears. Nikaido wears a biker outfit with rabbit ears. While in the Sourcer’s world they are offered a ride on a magic carpet by a magic-user. Meanwhile, Fujita and Ebisu are beaten up by two sorcerers. While one is breaking the hand of Fujita, Noi cuts him in half. Shin then rips the heart out of the other one. It’s a brutal scene, but the two had it coming. They go for ice cream. Fujita begs Noi and Shin to train him, but they decline.
Elsewhere, Nikaido and Kaiman are enjoying the magic carpet ride. Kaiman says that he “won’t leave until he gets his face back.” However, Nikaido points out that they have no money. Which then begs the question, how are they going to pay for the carpet ride? Kaiman decides that killing the driver would solve the problem. However, with no one to drive, they fall into some ruins. Meanwhile, the En family surrounds the now conscious severed head. One of En’s men arrives to tell him about a hideout. He sends Noi and Shin.
Shin and Noi kill the cross-eyed
Nikaido and Kaiman head to a restaurant. While there Nikaido searches for some direction. She is approached by a “devil” that gives her a piece of paper. Meanwhile, Kaiman passes out in the bathroom. The severed head starts talking, revealing that his name is Risu. Kaiman and Nikaido regroup. They follow a man that has crosses on his eyes but lost sight of him. On the other side of the building Shin, Noi, Fujita, and Ebisu arrive to find the boss of the men inside. As bloody shoot out ensues, Noi takes a bullet in the head for Shin. However, she quickly heals herself and Shin defeats the others.
Kaiman and Nikaido notice the commotion and find the aftermath of the fight. Kaiman begins to get his memories back, remembering the name Risu. The next morning Nikaido begins to hate being in the sorcerer world. She suggests that they separate to find Risu quicker. Meanwhile, En uses his smoke to power a robot body for Risu. En is recognized by Risu and the later quickly begs for his life. During tea, En questions Risu. He doesn’t remember who liked him or how he died. He hasn’t seen the leader of the cross-eye, as his face is rarely seen.
Nikaido searches on her own
Nikaido goes to a smoke shop to pawn her magical smoke. After her smoke is examined the shop keeper is excited to see such rare magic. He gives her massive amounts of money for it. She then murders the shop keeper to keep her magic a secret. She takes the money to pay for a 30 min meeting with a devil, Asu. Former friends, Asu is excited to she Nikaido. Unfortunately, he doesn’t know who curse Kaimon. He does reveal the whereabouts of Risu and offers to create a door to En’s mansion. He informs Nikaido that the “Cross-Eyes, lame sorcerers unable to produce smoke.”
At the mansion, Risu is starting to raise En’s suspicious. He is unsure that Risu’s behavior is an act or not. However, their meeting is interrupted by the news that Nikaido has entered the mansion. Noi rushes to fight the intruder, clashing with Nikaido. This series is slowly starting to unravel the mysteries of the cross-eye and who cursed Kaiman. I suspect that either Risu or Kaiman is the leader of the cross-eyes. Somehow they are connected. One thing I noticed is how brutal Nikaido and Kaiman are. They both murder innocent (I’m assuming) civilians in the sorcerer world. Those killings come so easily to them that it’s troubling.
However, I think that this series is intentionally playing with morality. Regardless, Nikaido and her murder are caught on tape. That’s going to be a problem in the future. The revelation that her magic is rare and she aims to never use it means that she will have to use it at some point. It thinks that the moment may come in the next episode when she faces off against Noi. I think it’s foolish of her to enter the mansion alone, I highly doubt she will be successful.
The first thing I noticed about The World’s Strongest is how similar its opening is to Dead Zone. Like in Dead Zone, Piccolo is training alone, in so far off part of the world. This time it’s the frozen Tsumisumbri Mountains, not a wasteland. Meanwhile, the villain, Dr. Kochin manages to summon Shenron. I found it interesting that in both movies the main villain can get his wish. Regardless, Gohan and Oolong are on a quest to find those Dragon Balls. After failing, they approach Dr. Wheelo’s lab. They’re attacked by Bio-Men. These Bio-Men are like blue Saibamen that make short work of Gohan.
The search for the world’s strongest
Piccolo intervenes, rescuing Gohan and Oolong. Much like Dead Zone, Piccolo is overwhelmed by three minions of Dr. Kochin. Eventually, Kochin arrives to kidnap Master Roshi. Mistakingly thinking that Master Roshi is the strongest man of the world he uses Bulma as leverage to get Roshi to obey. Oolong rushes to Goku’s house to tell him. Meanwhile, Dr. Kochin tests Roshi’s skills against Kishime, Ebifurya, and Misokatsun. Despite putting up a good fight he’s defeated. Bulma informs them that Goku is the strongest warrior on Earth. Dr. Kochin reveals that his plan is to implant Dr. Wheelo’s brain into the body of “the world’s strongest.” He hopes to seek revenge against all those that doubted his mind.
Goku arrives quickly destroying the traps inside. His encounter with Miskatsun is over quickly when Goku uses his Kaio-ken. When he battles Kishime and Ebifurya he becomes incase in ice. Gohan and Krillin arrive just in time. However, they are easily defeated. Goku uses his Kaio-ken once again. He quickly defeats Kishime and Ebifurya. Now inside Wheelo’s lab, Goku fights against a brainwashed Piccolo. Angered at Piccolo being brainwashed, Gohan releases his power. The wave of energy causes the brain control mechanism to break.
Dr. Wheelo verses Goku
Dr. Wheelo breaks free from the wall. Dr. Kochin is killed by an accident. Dr. Wheelo defeats Master Roshi, Piccolo, and Krillin. The Power-Pole makes a return in this movie, serving Goku as he’s able to trip Dr. Wheelo. Goku fights against Wheelo alone. He continues to increase his Kaio-ken up to 4 times. In combination with his Kamehameha wave, he’s able to send Dr. Wheelo into orbit. With Dr. Wheelo deciding to destroy the Earth, he has no choice but to use the Spirit Bomb, defeating Dr. Wheelo. The World’s Strongest is a good but basic Dragon Ball Z movie. This movie takes a lot of its cues from the previous one.
Growing up I was always a Goku fanboy, but now that I have grown the fact that Goku was always the savior annoys me. In Dead Zone, Goku and Piccolo team up against Garlic Jr. This movie marks the point in which Goku started to separate himself from the other in terms of power. That said it was nostalgic to see Goku using the Kamehameha wave, Spirit Bomb, and the Kaio-ken. Despite Goku’s inevitable victory, it still felt like he had to work for it. Finally, it was cool to see Master Roshi fight again.