Gundam Build Fighters Try Episode 22

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Recap

Team Try Fighters faces Minato’s Tryon in what is probably Try’s last truly good fight. The word ‘Try’ shows up a lot.

Gee’s Thoughts

It’s finally here folks, perhaps the one fight that anybody who’s stuck with Try this long has been waiting for. After the Tryon’s bombastic introduction a while back, this is definitely the fight that’s been set up the best. As anyone reading my coverage will know, my biggest gripe with Try is its lack of what made its predecessor work. Well fans should rejoice then, because the Tryon fight is the first in a long time that harkens to what made the original Gundam Build Fighters such a joy to watch.

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Right off the bat, the Tryon oozes with personality. Taking inspiration from classic super robot anime, the Tryon is much like the Crossbone Fullcloth, in that it’s a suit with tons of gimmicks that enhance it and make its fight more interesting to watch. I could easily just write a grocery list of all of the Tryon’s abilities, but it would never compare to seeing them for yourself. From its fantastically goofy old-school transformation theme to its chest lasers to pulling a goddamn sword out of its chest, this week’s episode makes it clear that the animators absolutely loved working on it. Masami Obari’s signature style can be seen at work here, rife with cool poses and sudden cuts to multi-tone shading.

On a side-note, attacking your opponent while they’re in the middle of a transformation? What the hell Team Try Fighters. Minato was totally right to call you out on that bullshit. That is some straight up villainous action. In an alternate universe, Gundam Build Fighters Try is about Minato and Team Try Fighters are the bad guys.

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In fact, this fight does a great job of encapsulating Gundam Build Fighter’s strengths while minimizing Try’s weaknesses. Perhaps the animation team themselves realized that the 3-on-3 format simply doesn’t work, considering the resources and time they have. The truth is that Sunrise just doesn’t have enough of either to give everyone the screentime they deserve. The reason rivals like Fellini and Yuuki worked was because they had plenty of time to endear themselves to the cast. Additionally, they got episodes devoted to them, complete with their own fights and moments in the spotlight. Comparatively, the only rivals in Try that have gotten comparable focus are the Gunpla Academy and Minato. Feel free to read last week’s post for my feelings on the utterly bland Gunpla Academy.

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Minato on the other hand, has the kind of flair and style that defined some of the best moments in the franchise, with the added benefit of getting more character development than the entire main cast combined. At this point, I’ll happily say that Minato is my favorite character in the Try. Unlike the main cast, Minato has more personality than can be easily stated in less than a sentence. The Tryon fight itself is basically a 1-on-3, and it works much better. By only focusing on one robot, the animation holds up much better and it gets an entire episode to shine. With rumors of a Build Fighters season 3, I can only hope that Bandai themselves have realized that returning to a 1-on-1 format would benefit everyone involved.

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In the end, it’s still a disappointing finish where once again, particle consumption is magically brought up again. Yes, particle consumption makes no fucking sense. Considering the Tryon is a goddamn super robot, you know, those robots that are literally powered by magic/fighting spirit/bullshit? Hell if anything, Yuuma’s Lightning should be the most liable to that sort of thing, what with it being more in line with the standard Gundam real robot image. If power consumption is such an issue in gunpla battle, why the hell isn’t everyone just using a Jesta with optic camo, funnels, and a GN Drive? Or even simpler, the Turn A?

Despite the mediocre conclusion, this week’s episode was a strong entry in the franchise, capable of standing up there with the likes of the Fellini fight. It had the dramatic flair and sense of theatrics that got me so enthusiastic about Gundam Build Fighters in the first place. Despite all of my misgivings about Try, I have to thank Sunrise for at least ensuring that Minato got the fight he deserved after all this time.

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And where do we go from here? With three episodes remaining, our last chance for anything redeemable is likely next week’s episode, where if anything like its predecessor, will focus more on cameos and fun moments. The previews seem to present it as 20 minutes of sucking Sekai’s dick, but hopefully we’ll still get some good scenes. After that though? It’s Gunpla Academy from here on out, and I’m not looking forward to it in the slightest. When I don’t particularly like anyone involved in that fight, there’s not much to get excited about. Doesn’t help that out of the six gunpla involved, maybe one or two of them have anything new left to bring to the table. It’s a sad finish for a show that started off on such a bang.

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