Don’t Get the Wrong Idea
This about sums up my reaction:
But unfortunately, I have to break out of speechless mode because I have a job to do here. Okay. Where do I even start? Well, first off, there are two objectives in Kaijou’s plan. The first one is to wait for Kise to copy Aomine’s moves perfectly so he can beat him. His teammates do their best to keep the gap between their scores small so that there’s still a chance to come back. And the second one is to force fouls on Aomine, so that by the time Kise is all warmed up, Aomine has to a play more carefully as not to risk any more fouls.
It’s not as simple as learning to copy moves, however. Kise’s problem is that he can’t imitate anyone stronger than himself, so he has to break past his limits. And beyond that, the fact that he has always looked up to Aomine holds him back. How do you beat someone who you also want to win because he’s so darn cool? Kise realizes that you can’t. So he also has to muster up the courage to give up on Aomine, never to look the same way at him again. That’s a little sad. Just a little.
There’s no denying that this is the most suspenseful game of the entire series. Considering that Kise’s personality is usually silly and carefree, it gave me goosebumps to see him tap into Aomine’s darkness, looking as if he’s going to murder someone. His stare is so intense that I was afraid it would burn a hole in my laptop screen.
Now, I have to hand it to the music (which sounds like it came straight from a horror movie) for enhancing the atmosphere, as well as Production IG’s best animation yet to allow for such a great watching experience. Every single movement is fluid and detailed. It’s not just the sweat flying all over the place that looks cool, but the close-up of Kise’s feet lifting off the ground as he gets ready to break past Aomine, and the slow narrowing of his eyes that make you go “uh-oh!” The entire episode gave me the chills. I can’t remember the last time my heart pounded so fast from watching anime.
No matter what happens in the next episode, Kise is officially my hero… ^_^