Ain't got no mojo...
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- Dec 28, 2020
Much like Adventure: as a whole, this episode was a let down in almost every possible way, not even holding off on the expensive animation until AFTER WarGreymon appears. No, you cannot trick me with a new insert song and nicely drawn static shots of WarGreymon, TOEI.
Let's analyze the original WarGreymon debut and this new one.
The writers seem to believe that working together with your partner Digimon in a battle every episode, is the same as developing a deep emotional bond. While that can be a large part of it, even the single two most featured characters, Taichi and Agumon, have no real depth to their partnership. It can be argued that the deepest of bonds can be forged in the heat of battle... but remember that Taichi and Yamato knew each other for 5 minutes before fist bumping Omegamon into existence.
Anyway, the inherent problem stems from an episode structure that has consistently consisted of:
1. We're given the stakes and the mission to accomplish, whether to get from point A to point B within the Digital World, or something in the real world is gonna go boom if they don't stop the enemy Digimon.
2. Enemy Digimon attacks.
3. Taichi and/or Yamato fight and are backed into a corner and seemingly can't win.
4. "No, we can win if we believe in each other... and totally get serious!"
5. They win.
This is not character growth and NOT what should be pointed to when trying to demonstrate a bond. Yeah, am I able to believe on a surface level that Taichi and Agumon care for each other? Sure, but give me, the viewer, something to cling to other than battles.
But yeah. let me be perfectly clear here:
The Adventure: WarGreymon debut fails on many levels. It may have featured better animation, but that's it, and frankly... I'd take the original any day. Go ahead and try to dismiss all of this as simply me being some guy that is nostalgic for the original, but it's painfully obvious that this reboot has maybe a shred of emotion woven into it like the original. See, the original WarGreymon/MetalGarurumon debut had huge stakes that were literally:
Our friends and family are going to be killed, the situation is out of control, and even our most powerful HOLY Digimon are proving to be ineffective against VenomVamdemon, who is at a level we didn't know existed. Oh? A cryptic message says to have ourselves shot with arrows of light and hope? FUCK IT! DO IT NOW, WE'RE SCREWED AS IS!
Digimon Adventure: had the benefit of writing a plot that is not only able to pull from 20 years worth of new content, but to also resolve the flaws within the original Adventure series. It has failed to do any of this, and that is a damn shame.
Yea this is exactly my problem with the new reboot esentially.
And this very episode perfectly summarized everything going wrong in the new reboot so far. All this is about is Taichi and Agumon, and even then they fail with establishing them as characters well into this new anime. I started giggling a little when they tried to show us the flashbacks of Agumon and Taichi - why would I care about their bond when all their bond is, "Taichi sits on Greymon/Metalgreymons head and shouts his name while he fights"; this was simply hilarious. They didnt grow together as characters, all they did was fight. Why would I be emotionally attatched to that? Why would I feel sorry or sad for them?
The series does a horrible job at establishing their bonds so far. Taichi is basically always, "lets fight, no matter what happens!", while carrying the thickest plotarmor alive by just not getting hurt at all by various attacks from the enemies. The guy should have been DEAD the moment Parrotmons lightning hit Metalgreymon, but no, he remains completely fine. And WHY ON EARTH does Metalgreymon have an unlimited power supply? He can suffer from major injuries and still stand there, still fighting. Apparently he doesnt have to eat, he doesnt have to rest and whenever he digivolves back to Agumon, it only takes like 5 Minutes till he is completely powered up again. S a y w h a t?
Even if this season is more action based, this is not an excuse for bad character writing and numerous plotholes left unexplained. Jjba is my favourite anime, which also follows the "monster of the week" style since Part 3+ and its fights are the core of the anime, yet the characters dont feel like shallow, wet, empty cardboard boxes with no personality whatsoever. The characters have various traits, they do all interact properly with one another and many of them have a decently written character arc that justifies their actions and their gains in the end. So I dont see why Adventure 2020 shouldnt also have good characters with a somewhat decent development. But I doubt we will get one.Guys, this is Digimon Adventure:. This season is more action focused. The original was more character based, and this one is more action based. Can't we be glad we have both? Wouldn't it be worse to only have seasons with no action, or only seasons with character development? Still, I understand character development can be more satisfying.
And yet, since the show is more action packed, you could consider that the Digimon partners are getting more time to shine. They are the ones getting character development, and not the humans. Its not a bad thing. I never really cared about Garudamon, but seeing her get a chance to kick butt this time around makes me more exited to see Piyomon and Sora. I get exited when Tokomon or Patamon show off those holy powers, not when Takeru talks. On the other hand, in the original adventure, Gabumon and Patamon were cool, but I was more interested in Yamato and Takeru's family drama. We have the best of both worlds. A season focused on the humans, and a series focused on the Digimon. At least its how I see things now.
I also don't think Taichi needs to earn the new evolution. It's not about Taichi. Its about Taichi AND Agumon. The two of them always working together no matter what. Both Agumon and Taichi have shown courage throughout the show. Why can't effort and determination be a good motive to unlock a new evolution?
It was a nice episode. In many other types of media, you see te enemy taking turns to attack the hero individually, so its nice to see a main character get targeted by so many enemies at the same time. And yet I'd say four Megadramon would wipe the floor with Garudamon, but as I said before, it just makes me apreciate Garudamon a bit more.
Say something, Lopmon!
From the very first episode one, Taichi was the brave, hot headed person that will just storm into every fight without thinking too much about it. He doesnt get punished for his reckless actions, he doesnt suffer any kind of injuries or witnesses any tragic events what would help him grow as a character. We dont see him struggle a lot, we dont see him being scares, we dont see anything negative about him.
In Adventure, he had a decent development, events like Skullgreymon or the whole Pietmon drama at the end made him take a step back and rethink his actions. He got punished for stupid decisions, he talked to other people, making him understand more of the world around him and taking more care about other different things before just going out and fight.
In this very episode, he and Agumon were defeated by Crossmon, yet he doesnt take a step back and rethinks his approach, instead it only takes like 2 seconds for him to regain his confidence and fight in the same way he did before again.
And it's not like the fights are even cleverly fleshed out with some kind of tension built into them. Its basically always charging attack in the most offensive way possible. There is no strategy used here and a rethinking of their approaches. And why not? Because Wargreymon one shottet Crossmon anyways. Great and surprising fight, woohoo.
And even if you insist that this anime is simply there for the fights, then they should stop trying to shove emotional scenes into it with a reminder, "omg look how they grew despite them not having grown at all! Now feel some emotion and ignore the lackluster writing we provided so far!"; and even after that you should at least admit that there is waaay too much Taichi and Agumon action.
I cant stand looking at Agumon and Taichi anymore - why did the creators even bother with creating 8 digi-destined if 7 of them are basically non-existant? It just doesnt work. None of them grew as people; especially people like Sora, Yoe and Mimi just feel so useless in this show. They barely interact with each other and it kind of hurts to see all of that. Dropping the entirety of the character arc and potential backstories like the one for Izzy in favor of just always fighting seems like a really depressing choice for me, especially since the fighting scenes arent even that much of a treat (and like I said earlier, when shows that got the same core like JoJo do a much much better job at still establishing characters and a story around all the fighting etc. )
So far the reboot is just disappointing and I dont expect for it to get better, I dont expect that we will get good character arcs or good character interactions.