Episode 36: The Resonating Dragons
Now that’s what I call a Wham Episode! Why does this anime series keep getting better and better with every episode?
Following off from last episode, Yuya joins the duel between Yuuto and Sora in accordance with Battle Royal rules, in an attempt to save the latter due to his injuries. And as both Yuya and Yuuto’s ace monsters – their dragons clash, they suddenly resonate with each other, resulting in a very unexpected outcome.
The above was what the audience was told in the preview prior to this episode’s airing, however the truth is that this episode delves much deeper than that. In my opinion, the preview does not do the episode justice at all (this is a compliment). Episode 36 is a very plot-heavy one, filled with twists and turns bound to keep one at the edge of his/her seat. While some are expected given the obvious foreshadowing in previous episodes, others lean more to the “Holy Cow!” territory. Unlike the character-focus approach of previous episodes, the writer in this episode chose to explore the background behind the characters that he has already set up quite well, intertwined within the really, really good dialogue as always. At this point of the series with 36 episodes already clocked in, I do agree that this is the correct time to do so.
That being said, the episode still introduces two seemingly important characters to the plot. The Professor, as many would have already guessed, is indeed related to Academia, the mysterious Fusion faction. I couldn’t really say much about him given that he only has about 2 lines in this episode. The other character is Yuugo, pictured above. The ending of this episode places him in the spotlight and I thought he does a fantastic job of making an appearance. While his voice actor, Takagi Shinpei, does suffer from the “first-time dubbing syndrome”, his voice fit that of Yuugo’s impression really well in my opinion. Imagine a mercenary in a classic Western movie becoming a Japanese all of a sudden. That’s Yuugo. Through only a couple of lines, you can tell that Yuugo has this hot-headed but somehow playful, mischievous personality.
The duel in this episode couldn’t really be called a “duel” since: it’s incomplete, and, each of the Duelists barely do anything. However, this “duel” still serve its two major purposes well: to illustrate the point of the two dragons resonating, as well as to show the “unexpected event” that happens to Sora at the “end” of it.
Despite the epic scale of the script this episode, it is not without any major flaws. The biggest letdown of this episode is perhaps the animation. With so many off-model shots and pretty bad transition between scenes, it really begs the question: why couldn’t – say, Episode 32 – and this episode switch animation directors? Such a plot-heavy episode do not really deserve this kind of art quality in my opinion.
However, ignoring the one major flaw it has, this episode still exceeds in terms of its script. This is an episode that we audience of ARC-V have been waiting for and it really bugs me that I have to wait another week for the next.
Duel Choreography: – (No score, reason above)
Episode 37: The Destiny that Starts Moving! Until then!