Hello, and welcome to the latest edition of Shonen Showdown, the only weekly battle anime and manga update that never quite kicked the paper-eating habit it picked up in Ninja Academy. Paste eating, yes, but paper is just too tasty. And yes, even weekly internet columns go to school, too. Ninja school.
With Shonen Jump on break for the week, our weekly battle anime and manga recap is merely a weekly battle anime recap, but let that not drive you to despair, for we've still got the latest in One Piece, Naruto, and Hunter x Hunter for your enjoyment! Head on below to read our words, then tell us how much in despair you are that the manga is all on break and/or hiatus!
One Piece Episode 560
Hordy manages to deal two catastrophic blows to Vander Decken and leaves him to die on Noah. The evil bastard hops out into the water and goes to kill Shirahoshi, but her brothers manage to delay Hordy until Luffy arrives and cuts him off.
Back on Fishman Island, Wadatsumi gets psyched up and knocks out the Kraken with one punch. Jimbei is the giant's next target, but one kick from the fishman severely damages the giant…thing's hand. Sanji gets pissed when the impact knocks down Nami and he gets involved with fighting Wadatsumi. Hyouzou starts downing a ton of pills, so he becomes 'roided out, so it's time for Zoro to take out the eight-legged punk. It looks like we'll FINALLY get to some of the Strawhat fights next episode.
Hunter x Hunter Episode 42 and 43
Oh boy. I go away to travel for a few weeks, giving me these two beauties to watch when I returned, and I'm not sure there was anything better to watch as a 'welcome back' gift! I'm going to go ahead and give a spoiler warning, as I don't think there's a lot I can say without talking details at this point. Still with me? Good to know!
First and foremost, we see the grand return of Leorio. You know, for someone who seems to have his face stuck in books learning complex medical things, it was a little surprising that he didn't quite understand nen. For now, I've got to assume that he has had a go at learning, but just hasn't figured out how to use it properly yet. An entertaining problem if it turns out to be true, but we'll see in plenty of time. He joins Gon and Killua to wrangle some cash for the upcoming auction with a pretty smart arm wrestling con. Smart that he can use Gon effectively, but not so smart when you consider how long it's going to take them to make a profit. We also see Killua's brother leave the house, and while that's a revelation in itself, I feel we'll be waiting a while until we see anything come of it. I'm calling him being crazy powerful though.
That aside, this wasn't even close to everything that happened in the two episodes. Kurapika has arrived in Yorknew as expected, working as a bodyguard and attending the auction. The first of the surprises comes here, when he admits to Melody that he is in fact a Kurta. Sure, she'd have been able to tell that he was lying, but it's not like she was threatening him, or that she even knew that for certain already. We do end up with some minor revelations regarding the two of them, and I feel that Melody will be sticking around for a little while longer, based on the 'goal' she mentioned to Kurapika. That and I feel it may be more than her arm that she plans to restore come the end of the series. Speculation, speculation!
The meat of the episodes, while relatively simple and common to many a shonen anime, was enough to leave me utterly shocked. It wasn't the content specifically, but rather that it was happening in Hunter x Hunter. We've had a few hints that the series could end up this way, specifically with Killua stealing the prisoners heart and Hisoka's random fight with the sword-throwing guy during the hunter exam, but to see such shocking scenes in quick succession just cements the idea that the Phantom Troupe are an absolutely terrifying group of individuals.
Hundreds of people died due to the efforts of two main members of the troupe, but there were others who also played their parts. Even the innocent looking girl with the hoover kills a few before disposing of the mountain of corpses in the auction house. We know a lot more about Franklin, Shizuku and Uvogin, but it's frightful to see just how capable they are, and how many more members are in the Troupe that we know utterly nothing about.
Still, it's all about Uvogin for now, as he's currently making an absolute racket by taking out even more mafia members while waiting for the Shadow Beasts to show themselves. The end of the last episode shows the arrival of four members, including one that looks suspiciously like Majin Buu. At any rate, I feel we will be seeing another stunning display from Uvogin. The Shadow Beasts are too new and hyped up for it to happen any other way, as far as I'm concerned. Still, it's been quite some time since I've been excited for more episodes to air. About two weeks in fact, when I last watched Hunter x Hunter.
[Hunt for this show on Crunchyroll!]
Naruto Shippuden episode 275
While the significance of Naruto waking up to his captivity and busting out to join the war can't be understated, all in all nothing much happens besides a brief scene of his pushing a black ball through crackly air and a bunch of flashbacks in the midst of conversation with Iruka. Needless to say, he was unconvinced.
Next week, though! Giant godzilla monsters stalk the battlefield!
[Push balls through the air on Crunchyroll!]
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