Writing a good ending is a lot harder than people might think. You’ve got to wrap up the arcs of your characters, pay off everything setup that still remains, and wrap the story up in a nice little bow. Many stories fail to do this, and in doing so, they sour the goodwill they had built up with the fans.
Mob Psycho 100 is not one of those shows.
Season three of Mob is a masterpiece through and through. It brings the series’ narrative to a satisfying – not to mention extremely emotional – conclusion. Seasons one and two were already fantastic, but season three cemented Mob Psycho 100 as one of the greatest anime of our time. A true modern masterpiece.
Picking up right after season two, Mob and Reigen are out doing what they always do. Only now there’s a giant broccoli in the middle of the city. One that is quickly becoming an object of worship, which a certain divinely-inclined spirit wants to take advantage of. More importantly for Mob: the time nears for him to muster the courage to confess to his crush, Tsubomi. Mob’s journey of self-improvement is coming to a close. But will he be able to ever accept himself?
The arcs in this season are all about payoff. Story threads built up across the first two seasons finally come to a head here. The Psycho Helmet Religion, Dimple’s character arc, Mob’s ???%, everything comes to a close. Hell, they even cover the Telepathy Club’s goal to meet aliens! No stone is left unturned!
And they are all fantastic! You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll never see what’s coming.
I especially love that none of the major conflicts are resolved through violence. Mob Psycho has always been about bucking shounen trends and it continues to do so now. Truth, honesty, and compassion are the strongest weapons here, not muscles or psychic powers. It turns every dramatic showdown into an incredible character moment, as we see the cast confront parts of themselves that they’re afraid of or work to overcome a mistake they’ve made. It all works brilliantly with the series’ core theme of improving and accepting yourself.
All of this comes to a head in the grand finale. And what a finale it is! It’s simple, it’s sweet, it made me laugh, and it made me tear up! It’s a beautiful ending; seeing just how far Mob has grown left me feeling like a proud parent!
The only thing I ever wanted was for Mob to be happy. And the series ends with exactly that. I couldn’t ask for anything more.
In terms of presentation, season three is arguably the strongest the series has ever been. Granted, that’s a hard comparison to make; all three seasons have knocked it out of the park in terms of style and animation. This one just carries that legacy all the way to the end, cementing the entire series as one of the most beautiful anime ever created.
For how intentionally simple the character designs are, it’s amazing just how much emotion the artists were able to get out of them! Whenever they express anything, be it disgust or sorrow or pure joy, their faces seem to radiate that emotion. They don’t even need to go comedically over-the-top; when Shigeo breaks down in tears, it’s taken completely seriously, his expression matching what anyone feeling what he feels would make, yet it hits so much harder than you’d expect!
Of course, the action scenes are a definite highlight. The animators took the bizarre and psychedelic style of the show and cranked it up to eleven this time! Even though so few characters actually throw hands against each other, every single battle sequence is a joy to behold, with jaw-dropping sakuga and stunning choreography.
Best of all: they did the thing where the first OP plays during a climax. And it’s awesome!
Speaking of music: the score this season is absolutely incredible! On top of the returning tracks, we get a whole ton of new ones! These include the most terrifying version of ‘Explosion of Mob’s Feelings’, an incredible insert song in ‘Exist’, and of course: the OP, ‘1’, and ED, ‘Cobalt’, by Mob Choir are BANGERS!! From the bizarre and psychedelic to the badass or the terrifying, the whole OST is amazing!
I would be remisce to leave out the voice cast. God damn, these guys put on their best performances yet! Setsuo Itō absolutely kills it as Mob, bringing his normal charm while managing to fill the character with some devastating displays of emotion. Takahiro Sakurai is as charming as ever as Reigen; hearing him break down is genuinely heartbreaking. Akio Ōtsuka is as delightful as ever as Dimple, capturing how sleezy and conniving the little ghost is while filling his voice with enough love and emotion in important scenes that you almost forget that Dimple looks like… well, Dimple.
Alas, there’s a problem with the English voice cast. Not with the actors themselves, they’re actually really good. Rather, the problem is with the producers.
See, voice actor Kyle McCarley, the English voice of Mob, wanted a union contract for his work on the third season. Basically, all he wanted was assurance that he and the rest of the cast would be treated fairly. A simple request. One that Crunchyroll refused.
Again, there’s nothing wrong with the actual actors and their performances. But it is a shame that one of the best actors from the first two seasons of the Dub got shafted by the producers. Voice actors deserve better.
As for Mob Psycho 100 III itself, season three is an absolute masterpiece! The story, the animation, the music, it’s all top-tier anime at its best! This firmly cements this series as a modern masterpiece!
And now… it’s over. There’s no more Mob Psycho 11 to look forward to. It ended on such a strong note, but even still, I’m sad. What am I supposed to do now?
I’ve been watching Mob Psycho ever since the first episode of the first season came out. It’s been with me since I was a teenager. Seeing it end fills me with an odd sense of pride and melancholy.
So long, Mob. And thank you for everything.
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