What They Say:
Komatsu is kidnapped by a gourmet hunter who wants to use the boy as bait. Toriko and Coco are his only hope for survival, but they’ve got their hands full battling a deadly Devil Python!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The introduction of Coco in the previous episode was a good bit of fun as he added something different to the dynamic of just Komatsu and Toriko, though a good part of me wants to just go back to the original pairing so that we can flesh out the world a bit more before upping the party count. With this being a multi-part story, Coco’s back in the picture here and the gang is having quite an adventure following up from the last time, especially with the group of locals that have shown up as well that have an almost caveman like feeling to them. What is amusing though is just how resourceful Tina is as she deals with everyone by revealing that she planted a camera in Komatsu’s helmet so she can see everything, which is better than the ruffians she’s surrounded by.
Or at least that was the initial hope, which is dashed when she sees only the face of Komatsu’s kidnapper as he races down the tunnels below while Coco and Toriko deal with the larger than life beasts that are there. Coco and Toriko are a lot of fun to watch as they do remind me of a lot of classic Dragon Ball with the kinds of adventures Goku would be on as a boy, but with the man-sized Goku involved. The duo work well together and they’re the types to use both brawn and brains to defeat the creatures that are attacking them. There’s a seriousness to it but it also has that light feeling alongside all of it that allows it to be more of an adventurous romp than anything else. There is seriousness to a Gourmet Hunter kidnapping Komatsu, but that’s also being chastised by others who find it to be a poor thing for any Hunter worth his salt to do.
While we do have the whole kidnapping subplot, it fits into things in a pretty minor way for the majority of the episode. We do see them running along, more often than anything else, but the main focus is on that of Toriko and Coco fighting. The creature they’re up against almost looks like it belongs in another series with its tentacles, by the Devil Python is a dangerous opponent to be sure. The fun to watch here is in seeing Coco’s abilities come to light when he goes all purple, but also to see how Toriko brings his A game to the table by getting pretty serious with a dangerous opponent. Each of them has a certain air of confidence about them that’s earned, and it’s actually a really nice change of pace to have lead characters that are confident in this way as they just get right into it and do it. It’s one of the differences in having an adult in the leading roles compared to overly emotional high school kids living through a fantasy more often than not.
While I’m definitely getting some good Dragon Ball vibes from the show in terms of the action and character designs, I’m also getting some in the slightly drawn out department as the bulk of the episode is given over to one fight against one creature. It’s an impressive creature and I do like the importance they’re giving it, but it’s just going to make it harder going forward when you bring in other creatures as they have to be more powerful and provide more of a challenge. Thankfully, the show does find the right balance in the humor and action elements so it knows when to be serious, but when it goes for the light material, it doesn’t go over the top in a way. Even when Toriko’s arm goes massive, it doesn’t feel like the kind of out of character humor that it could be. Toriko’s a good bit of fun here, but it feels like it’s trying a bit too hard at this stage.
Simulcast By: FUNimation
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70″ LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.