The “epic” showdown between Hiro and Ichiro finally takes place, and neither of them are present for it. Uh… I mean, I guess this is nothing new. We shouldn’t be surprised as we’ve seen this happen before. Whenever these two get too worked up, their “bodies” takeover for them. In an evenly matched duel, it is only a matter of time before both combatants step back from the battlefield and let their inhumanity do all the fighting. But that’s precisely the problem. What should have been an emotionally charged battle between a teenager throwing a temper tantrum and an old man desperate to save his daughter is anything but. They both “pass out,” so in essence, we’re watching a pair of machines throw down. Do they have feelings? Maybe, but we can’t tell. Does Ichiro’s robot body care that his daughter is dying? Maybe, but again, we can’t tell. From a distance, the choreography looks nice since the are lots of fancy CGI being thrown about. Nevertheless, I find the whole thing boring, because there just isn’t any personality left. It’s disappointing that both characters fade into the background.
It’s also weird to me that Ichiro can now remote control several jumbo jets at the same time. Not only that, he has to contend with Hiro also trying to bring those planes crashing down into the city. In a previous episode, we saw the old man barely manage to control a single car. Since when did he go from zero to hero? I guess he always had it in him, and this desperate situation served to bring out the best that had remained dormant up until now. But considering how the last few episodes have been nothing but The Hiro Mass Murdering Extravaganza, maybe we could’ve and should’ve devoted a little more time to the actual protagonist of the series. Maybe. I also don’t like how Ichiro fights back by making machine gun noises of his own as well. After all, I thought the noises were only “necessary” for Hiro, because he’s still rather childish. It’s a dark part of his childhood fantasy come true or something. He reads a lot of manga, so he’s imagining himself in a manga making the same onomatopoeia as some of his favorite fictional characters. But no, apparently Ichiro has to make the same noises too if he wants to use his machine gun abilities. As a result, you have two “men” going TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH-TUH at each other, and I’m just sitting there like, “What the fuck am I watching?”
And yeah, Mari gets caught in a flaming skyscraper. When one of the jumbo jets crashes into it, the elevators became inoperable, and I assume the stairs aren’t usable either. And now we have confirmation for why the girl suddenly got a burst of character development out of nowhere. Had her presence been consistent from the start of the series, I wouldn’t have minded. I’d have no reason to complain. Instead, she practically disappeared from the story just to suddenly emerge for no other reason but to tug at our heartstrings. We don’t bother to give her brother any of the spotlight, because who gives a shit about male children dying, right? But when your precious daughter is unconscious on the ground with blood trickling out of her mouth, and you’re desperately trying to jump-start her heart again, GOD ISN’T THAT JUST THE SADDEST THING? No, it’s not emotionally manipulative at all! So we pluck this character out from the trash heap just to make sure she has the bare minimum amount of character development to make this scene “work.”
It’s also not incredibly lame how long this scene lasted. Basically, Ichiro is like Super Jesus. He can fly, he can shoot lasers, and he can even cure cancer! You’d be crazy to think he couldn’t bring his daughter back to life. Even though his fight with Hiro took forever — and I really thought the fire in the skyscraper should’ve been much worse by that point — you always knew at the back of your mind that Ichiro would come through. But we need suspense! We need the audience to be at the edge of their seats! If they know that he can save her anyway, then his desperate cries and pleas would lose all emotional impact. As a result, MAPPA stretched the fuck out of this scene. It just kept going and going and going. And for a second, I almost thought she had actually died for good. I almost thought he couldn’t save her. But of course he could! He’s Super Jesus! We just had to plant that little seed of doubt to make the audience question themselves. “Wait, was my assumption wro–… oh, there she goes.”
Anyway, Robo-Ichiro manages to tear off Robo-Hiro’s arms and the back of his head for good measure. He doesn’t, however, make sure Robo-Hiro can no longer do harm. He just drops his enemy from the sky where it might have hit and killed someone. Luckily, it didn’t. And for some reason, a pair of women come across Robo-Hiro’s broken body begging for water, and they’re just like, “Yeah, sure!” I mean, just look at that line in the screenshot above. I just gotta ask… really? If you see something like that in the middle of the streets and it’s begging for water, would you really comply? I sure as fuck wouldn’t! I’d have bigger things to worry about… like y’know, the national crisis of planes fucking falling from the sky. I can’t expect much, I suppose. These are the same sort of people who are like, “Durr, the trains are running now, so let’s go home.” This is just after being saved by Ichiro. But whatever, our serial killer isn’t out for the count yet. After all, we still have that meteor to contend with. If he’s not needed for that, then what is he needed for? Oof, I’d be lying if I said I was looking forward to the next two episodes.