Can we talk about how every episode has some creative title, but these last two have just been ‘Match 3’ and ‘Match 3 Conclusion’? How interesting!
Narratively speaking, not much goes on in this episode. The third match reaches its climactic conclusion. In this time, both Todoroki and Iida shatter their limits. But against their opponents in class B, even that may not be enough.
Animation wise, this is easily the strongest episode yet. Practically every single shot of action here is just pure sakuga! From Iida moving at speeds beyond the human eye, Todoroki getting hotter than ever before, Ojiro and Shoji’s hand-to-hand matchups, the animators went crazy this time around! Combine that with some of the most fun use of onomatopoeia the show has done so far and you get one of the most visually appealing episodes of the entire series!
Unfortunately, the narrative itself is still lacking. It’s overburdened by yet more flashbacks to previous seasons (those aren’t going away, huh?) and the character development ultimately boils down to “I need to improve on this”. It seems that all the actual plot development is going to happen at the end.
*Dropping the anime-only guise and speaking as a manga reader for a second: that’s entirely true. Nothing truly important happens in this arc until the end. That’s not a criticism of the episode itself, rather one of the entire arc. Seeing as its a problem in both versions, I felt it only fair to point out. Okay, back to the proper review.*
How did none of these kids end up killing each other, by the way? Todoroki blasted Tetsutetsu with so much heat it broke the cameras, Iida kicked Mudman in the head at speeds to high for the human eye to see, and Mudman dropped a whole freaking tower on Iida and Todoroki! By all rights, these kids should have murdered each other multiple times.
Honestly, that’s about all there is to say about this episode. It’s visually gorgeous from beginning to end, but the actual story here is pretty meaningless. Luckily, that animation is more than enough to make up for it, at least for me. If the next match looks just as good, then we’ll be solid.
Dude, the climax of this arc is gonna look fucking nuts, isn’t it?