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REVIEW: SM135: The Semifinals! Kaki VS Glazio!!

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blood is thicker than water
Fun fact, the actual saying was "The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb", which has the completely opposite meaning.

Is it just me, or are Gladion's Pokémon able to take a ridiculous amount of punishment? Previously, his Umbreon tanked a Z-Move, and here, I was surprised that Lycanroc survived a Shell Trap, even if it wasn't very effective, and took two super effective Focus Blasts, atop the damage it had already sustained, before finally fainting. I just wanted that [email protected]$$ Outrage smile to disappear from my sight ASAP, but nope, it had to remain there for a couple more moments after Shell Trap.
The Pokémon Gladion uses- Umbreon and Lycanroc Midnight have a reputation for being tanky, though.
 
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Pyro Kicker
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The Pokémon Gladion uses- Umbreon and Lycanroc Midnight have a reputation for being tacky, though.
I assume you meant "tanky". Yeah, I guess you're right. I think I just wanted that hellish smile to disappear from the screen as fast as possible.
 
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Gladion and Kiawe’s mutual respect is something I didn’t know I needed until now.

Jessie, James, Meowth... if you interrupt this league... oh god, it’s gonna happen, isn’t it...

The fight was... really good, actually. Marowak got bodied again but actually got a good hit in (that Iron Head/Flare Blitz combo looked badass as hell), and at least this time he got trashed by an opponent we know the strength of. Besides, the little bone dance to escape Stone Edge was kinda cute.

Lycanroc... jesus, I think this thing needs to be taken out, the rabbies have taken over. That creepy serial killer smirk got more unsettling the longer it stayed there, but I guess it’s in character... gotta say though, watching Lycanroc crashing headfirst into Turtonator’s Shell Trap made me laugh more than 80% of the gags in this series.

I like how you can tell Turtonator’s gonna kick ass whenever he crash lands out of his pokeball. Maybe he was a bit too tanky here, but he’s finally given us his full potential (though I call bullshit on Focus Miss scoring a mark twice in a row)

I love the juxtaposition between the maniacal Lycanroc and the cool and regal Silvally. This is gonna be good.

Pretty good episode, overall.
 
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I liked that they showed Mimo go all the way to the stadium to watch, apparently on her own

So we've seen Ulu close up shop to come and watch, Sophocles parents watch on TV, Lusamine and her co-workers watch from a box, nothing for Ash or Lana sadly, not even a cameo from family and other friends
 
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I assume you meant "tanky". Yeah, I guess you're right. I think I just wanted that hellish smile to disappear from the screen as fast as possible.
I did mean ‘tanky’! Autocorrect does weird things sometimes...

Lycanroc’s just doing its job, which is doing creepy werewolf things!
 
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The recent episodes are doing a good job of creeping people out apparently, and that’s a nice escape from humour seeping into battles in my opinion.
I like the seriousness too, but this went a little too much into the "creepy" territory for me.
 
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So we pretty much got confirmation that the reason Guzma is "undefeated" is because he uses Emergency Exit as an excuse to quit when he's losing.

- Plumeria warns Guzma not to underestimate Ash

- The grunts say that Guzma is undefeated so there's no way he should lose

- Plumeria says something along the lines "You guys won't know WHY he's undefeated"

But now Guzma's in a scenario where he can't just walk away before he loses.
 
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I like the seriousness too, but this went a little too much into the "creepy" territory for me.
Haven’t watched the episode yet, so I’ll can’t speak on the creepiness this time. Will give it a watch tomorrow probably with subs.
 
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This was actually a great episode. I love the battle between Kiawe and Gladion, and I just like that you can feel this mutual respect between each other.
 
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Mimo is so cute. I love that she showed up to support Kiawe in his last league battle. Similarly, I thought it was super cute to have Lillie cheering for Gladion while Mimo cheered for Kiawe. I always find it cute when family support each other in battles. Lusamine having another special banner for Galdion would have topped it off. :LOL:

As for the battle, it was okay, but I had some issues. No, actually, a lot of issues. One, Marowak went down so damn quickly. It felt like he barely did anything before fainting. And I get that he got wrecked by 2 Sword Dance boosted super effective Stone Edges, but still, other Pokemon have taken way more. If Rowlet and Primarina could last as long as they did against Decidueye and Golisopod, Marowak could have handled a bit more I think. Also, I thought that Gladion spamming Stone Edge was a bit weird. I mean, yeah if you were playing the games and were using your Sword Dance boosted Lycanroc against fire-types, you'd probably just spam Stone Edge as well, but for the anime it comes off as really repetitive. Also, Lycanroc must have like max EV and IV 50 million HP, because that thing tanked so many damn hits. It was to the point that it didn't feel realistic to me for it to take all of those hits and skill be fighting like the battle just started. I thought the Shell Trap would have ended him, but nope. He took that and then some. But who knows, maybe that's just me. Lastly...I dunno, it really kind of just bothered me that the only reason Kiawe beat Lycanroc was because Turtonator just so happened to learn a super powerful fighting-type move in the middle of the battle. I felt like Turtonator was close to going down and new move is the only thing that saved him, and to me that's pretty lackluster.

So while I didn't hate this episode or anything, a lot of the battle felt, I guess odd. I'll give this a 6.7/10.
 
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I'll be honest, as this was a 2 vs 2 battle, I was hoping Turtonator's Dragon Tail will show the effect of forcing a Pokemon to switch out, something that hasn't been seen in the anime.

Not a complaint as it seems common nowadays
 
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How did Lycanroc dodge Turtonator’s shell trap while in “outrage status”? This Pokémon is OP. Kinda weird to see it faint though, as that’s something we’ve never seen before. I like the action and camera angles in this episode. It reminded me of past league battles. While Marowak did go down pretty fast, it makes sense as to why. And I’m also glad to see Turtonator being badass again. I love that oversized fire tortoise :lapras:
 
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Also, I thought that Gladion spamming Stone Edge was a bit weird. I mean, yeah if you were playing the games and were using your Sword Dance boosted Lycanroc against fire-types, you'd probably just spam Stone Edge as well, but for the anime it comes off as really repetitive.
I also didn't like it at first, but then you have to remember both Counter and Outrage are huge risks, due to how the former can be easily avoided if the opponent predicts it, and the latter can leave the Pokemon confused and open to attacks. It makes sense that Gladion would want to play it safe and only use Stone Edge for most of the battle.

Edit: The situation with Lycanroc also reminds me of Sawyer's Slaking, where it took an X-scissor, a High Jump Kick and NINE Karate chops before he healed with Slack Off, and then knocked out Hawlucha in one hit with a Counter that he should've easily brushed off due to fighting type moves not being effective against flying types.
 
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ᴛʜᴇ ɴᴀᴍᴇ'ꜱ ᴘᴏɴᴅ, ᴊᴀᴍᴇꜱ ᴘᴏɴᴅ
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This was actually a great episode. I love the battle between Kiawe and Gladion, and I just like that you can feel this mutual respect between each other.
I thought so too. The earlier moments with Mimo and Kiawe being a doting brother were rather sweet in my opinion; the dynamic between being older brothers for Gladion and Kiawe was also appreciated. It makes me wish I saw these two interact more prior to this fight.

Speaking of the fight, wow-great animation, a nice selection of OST, and overall good pacing (although Marowak could have done more; where is the endurance it displayed against the repeated super-effective hits it took from the Greedy Rapooh?). This is my favorite Alola League episode to date. And kudos to Plumeria for having the forethought to know what's coming; I'm looking forward to seeing Golisopod go down.
 
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