Holy shit! This had to be the single most kickass anime episode out the hundreds I’ve watched for the years I’ve been doing this column. I feel like just posting a picture of me with my jaw hanging would be far more effective to communicate my reaction than any number of written words could.
Just… just… damn.
Not that I ever doubted the word of you lunatics, but I absolutely understand now why you were so insistent about it being absolutely essentially to stick with the show to the end of this arc. Like I said, we’re talking about something like 10 to 20 hours of build-up here to a climax that’s delivering all the catharsis you could’ve possibly been looking for. When Yusuke darts at Toguro and starts his machine gun barrage of nasty punches… you absolutely feel the slow-burnt hatred behind each blow that’s finally combusting.
Honestly, while I’m talking about favorites, that whole part where Yusuke takes the upside-down Spirit Gun shot at Toguro, launches him clean out of the stadium and the bastard then just keeps plowing through miles and miles of painful obstacles… that’s right up there in one of my all-time favorite anime scenes ever, right away.
Like I’ve always said, the makers of this show know exactly how to manipulate the audience - - knowing when to frustrate them, when to tease them and when to finally satisfy them - - and they’re dealing out the master strokes of that manipulation, right now. You can just feel their enthusiasm crackling off of every cel here.
Bring on the rest, now! Right away! Pronto! Stat!
Look up this episode, "Two Great Fighters' Confrontation” and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.