Today: Kaidoh does what Kaidoh does best. There are screencaps. And just maybe some fangirling.
80. Style of the Pretender
Girls fawn over Wakato. Inui fawns over Kaidoh. (Well, and all of us, of course.)
Sakuno and Tomoka wait to use the vending machine and some mean girls from Jyousei Shounan cut ahead of them. Tomo stands up to them, but one of them pulls Sakuno's hair. Sakuno begins to bleed profusely from the scalp and quickly loses consciousness. She is rushed to the hospital, where she lapses into a coma.
Forgetting all about the matches, Ryoma rushes to her side and holds her hand through the long dark days as she lies there, unresponsive and weakening. Finally, Ryoma takes his guitar, which Fuji brought in for him, and writes a song for Sakuno, the only way he can express the deep love in his heart, the love he never shared. And now it may be too late...
But the sorrow-laden tones of Ryoma's voice and the heart-felt poetry of the lyrics rouse Sakuno and her eyes flutter open. "Oh, Ryoma-kun!" she whispers and Ryoma crushes her to his chest. Nanjiroh and Inui both capture the event on camcorders. Tezuka comes back from Germany with a hot girlfriend and everything is wonderful.
Or maybe that was a fic I
Ryoma does sort of save the day, though, by hitting a tennis ball close to the mean girls and scaring them away. He claims he had no idea they were menacing Sakuno and Tomoka, but you know how he is. He's a shy boy.
Anyhow, we've been away from Kaidoh long enough!
The match is about to start and Wakato's fangirls are going wild. Even the boys are in love with Atobe, but only girls love Wakato. Because he's a total prat.
Wakato tells Kaidoh he will enjoy seeing Kaidoh's Snake. Momo tries to stagger onto the court to kick Wakato's ass, but falls
So, Kaidoh is ready for a fight here. We flash back to the interview where Wakato trash talked about the Snake. It seems like Inui is showing the article to Kaidoh to get him riled up for some purpose or another.
Wakato does his Change-Over. Kaidoh just stands there wondering why he has to play someone who is even more of a stupid dumbass than Momoshiro.
Kaidoh serves, looking hot as always. Wakato returns the ball and everyone, even Horio, stares at his form and wonders why it's so familiar. Wakato takes the point, yells out, "Come on!" and suddenly everyone knows he's imitating Lleyton Hewitt.
Kachiro and Katsuo congratulate Horio on his perspicacity. "As expected from two years of tennis experience!" Seriously. They are actually impressed. (Of course I was impressed, but so few others really appreciate Horio properly.)
Back on the court, Wakato is even imitating Hewitt's little idiosyncrasies, like adjusting his shirt. I'm surprised he's not embarrassed to be so blatant in his mimicry. It's completely against the Spirit of Shounen Sports! You should play your own game, not someone else's.
Kaidoh loses his service game without taking a single point. Wakato's fangirls screech. Kaidoh frowns. I give him a little hug. Everyone on the sidelines talks about how Kaidoh won't give up.
The girls do a special Wakato cheer. Tomoka wishes silently that Kaidoh would do his best and win. "And shut that cheerleading team up!"
Kaidoh works hard and returns the ball with a Snake. There's an awesome graphic of a cobra or some other sort of scary snake. He takes the point and the crowd goes wild. I smile quietly to myself.
They play some more. Kaidoh is hot. Eiji and Fuji are admiring. Inui reminisces about Kaidoh's severe training and we get a lovely training montage of sweaty workout goodness. And Inui's voice as he says all of this. He's clearly both very proud and very fond of his boy.
"That's interesting," Fuji says and Inui begins to worry.
Tomoka does a cheer which consists, in its entirety, of: "Yay! Yay! Kaidoh! Yay! Yay! Kaidoh! Kaidoh!" (Dammit, she stole my cheer!) Inui worries some more.
The Snake has broken Hewitt. So Wakato changes again. This time it's Pete Sampras. Kaidoh is perhaps a little annoyed. He falls on the court, which I always like to see because he's so hot when he gets all dirty.
Inui is completely floored by Wakato's ability to mimic. Does he ever do any actual research on anyone except Kaidoh and Tezuka?
Meanwhile, my wonderful darling baby stands up to horrible evil bad stupid Wakato and says he's not one bit scared and he won't lose to a guy like that. And there's dirt on his face and determination in his eyes and courage in his heart and one sweet ass in his shorts.
That's what it's all about, my friends.
81. Viper vs Fake Viper
Stupid Wakato keeps on with his Sampras impression. Momo gets pissed off just watching. "Kaidoh, you had better not lose to that copycat or else I'll cut you off." Not that Momo would be able to cut Kaidoh off. One sneer, one hiss, one jostle in the hallway, and they'll be crammed in a storage closet, pressed tight together, salivating into each other's mouths, a mop handle poking into Momo's back.
Kaidoh is playing as hard as he can, sweating and grunting and diving for the ball. Uncharacteristically, he runs up to the net and cuts off Wakato's volley. He's getting used the Sampras style now and it's nothing he can't deal with.
Momo drags himself to his feet and over to the fence to
"Should you be standing up?" Ryoma asks.
"How can I sit when that stupid jerk I like is playing?"
Inui contemplates giving Momo another drink but realises that he'll be off the team if he kills Momo. Or at least if it can be proved...
Kaidoh feints and provokes Wakato into a lob, which he returns with the Snake. It's 1 all! More than enough for my Snake to handle, Kaidoh thinks. I smile and smile and smile.
And it's time for another change. I'm hoping for Venus Williams but what we get is Andre Agassi. And FauxAgassi can even return the Snake.
This is bad for Kaidoh. He's most vulnerable mentally and the frustration is just not good for him. Meanwhile, Wakato's fans cheer and Wakato kisses the tennis ball to whip them into a frenzy, which it does. Also to annoy Kaidoh, which it really, really does.
And here, this, this is Wakato's big flaw. He's not being properly respectful towards tennis. Kaidoh is right to be pissed off.
Another Change-Over. Obviously mimicry is Wakato's mutant power and his eyes glow red whenever he activates it. He switches to his left hand. It's Goran Ivanisevic. Kaidoh slides around the court some more and gets dirtier.
During the break between games, Kaidoh ticks off Wakato's fangirls for being so noisy around the court. Oh, I love him to death. Wakato tries to piss Kaidoh off by telling him the Snake is just a Buggy Whip shot so he has nothing original either. For some reason, Kaidoh doesn't rise to the bait.
Kaidoh is really doing well here, not getting too angry. I wonder if it was seeing Momo flip out in the first match that's making him more calm. He's still very focused.
Now we get a flashback to Wakato's first year and how Hanamura got her hooks into him. It's boring so I think we'll skip it.
Okay, now Wakato is Gustavo Kuerten. It's so boring! How can a match with Kaidoh be boring? I think we need some more Inui-Momo side action.
Like, Momo could be cheering for Kaidoh and not realise it and then Ryoma could bring it to his attention and they he would have to act all cold and uninterested. And then Inui would appear silently beside him and tell Momo that unless he (Momo) invited him (Inui) to the post-game celebration with Kaidoh, Momo would live to regret it. And then Inui would show Momo the diagrams he's drawn up of suggested threesome activities. Momo would faint, Ryoma would roll his eyes, Fuji would make plans to nip in and distract Kaidoh himself.
Yeah, that would have been good.
"I admit your skills are great," he says. "But I know people who use those moves better than you." Aw, Kaidoh loooooooooooves Seigaku. (No wonder everybody wants to nail him.) He wins the game and it's 6-5.
And now the moment we've been waiting for, since it was in the goddamn title. Wakato changes into Kaidoh himself. Momo is strangely turned on. Kaidoh is just mad.
82. Hanamura's Temptation
Wakato hits a Snake that Kaidoh can't return. He (Wakato) hisses. Kaidoh looks absolutely beautiful. Seriously. Here's a cap and I think I'm going to pause right now to make an icon so I can use it on this post.
So, maybe this is Kaidoh's plan: look so beautiful that Wakato's fangirls will be distracted and Wakato will be deprived of his support. Or maybe God just loves me.
Regardless, they're going into tie-break now. The music is so ominous that everyone gets scared.
Inui watches closely, analysing, stalking, trying to influence the game with his mind. Only he's not a mutant, so it doesn't work.
Wakato uses the Snake again. Inui is pretty impressed with Wakato. Maybe he's a little turned on as well. Everyone goes on about how angry Kaidoh is.
"Making Kaidoh angry is a skill I want too," Inui says. Later on he makes a list of possible ways to anger Kaidoh and ranks them in order of how much fun they'll be. But nothing he tries ever makes Kaidoh as angry as Momoshiro can and Inui gets very, very depressed.
Kaidoh hits an awesome Snake, but since Wakato is Kaidoh, he flings himself onto the court in order to return it. "No!" the fangirls wail. "Dirt got on Wakato-sama's face!" And he looks about as pissed off as Kaidoh too.
Okay, this is a lot less boring than the last episode. It's Snake versus Snake! "Dangerous," Momo says, looking at that stupid jerk he likes. He's almost smiling. I think there may be some sweaty bathroom stall time in his future after all.
And here it is, at last: Boomerang Snake! Wakato is floored. All the mutants freak out.
"You can't mimic me anymore," Kaidoh says. But Wakato just laughs. They snake around a bit more, trying to wear each other out. There's another Boomerang from Kaidoh. God, he's hot.
The mutants mutter about how Wakato should change to someone else, but he won't. Oh, now some more boring Wakato training flashbacks. This would be a good time to get up and get some cheese for a snack. It should be over in a few minutes.
Okay, we're back. What kind of cheese did you get? I have some Gouda. Anyhow, Oishi thinks things are bad for Kaidoh, but Ryoma and Inui know better. (That's a weird data pair-up.) And Fuji agrees that Kaidoh is awesome. Inui realises that there are too many people salivating after Kaidoh -- it's just not possible for him to deal with them all. He calls Tezuka to tell him all about it.
Ah, Kaidoh is using the same technique on Wakato as Ryoma used on Kaidoh, back in the first ranking matches. He's a cute little mimicker too. Momo notes this to Ryoma and Ryoma tips his hat and says he's honoured. Ohsodamncute.
We knew it would happen eventually. Wakato hits a Boomerang. It triggers another flashback. But you're probably not out of cheese yet.
In any case, the Boomerang just barely makes it into the doubles court. Inui gives a mini-lecture about the Wonder That Is Kaidoh and his special training. There's a mini-montage of Inui and Kaidoh training together: running down by the embankment (every sports series has to include a certain amount of embankment training time -- it's mandated by law), stretching, swinging, making out under the bridge.
Kaidoh wins, like there was ever any doubt. Shiba is so overcome by his amazingness, she has to sit down for a while. I am already sitting down so that's not an issue for me.
And now, the best part of the episode. Wakato's fangirls are angry that he lost. So they are going to take revenge on Kaidoh. Their intricate plan is to call out to him, since they figure he never gets attention from girls. When he turns around, all blushy and eager for their love, they'll attack him with soda. Such vengeance puts the Count of Monte Cristo to shame!
Tomoka notices the mean girls closing in on Kaidoh and goes into alert mode. And oh dear god what I wouldn't give to see her lay into them to defend Kaidoh. But it's Kaidoh, he can deal. "Kaidoh-san! Look this way!" the mean girls squeal. "We love your bandana!"
And Kaidoh turns with such a mean and angry look that the girl pours the soda over her own head.
Now, he just looks at them like that because they are Mean and the Enemy, right? He wouldn't do that to me, would he? Do you think he would? He wouldn't, right? (Though Inui would probably poison me.)
Kaidoh has no idea what's going on. Ryoma clues him in: "You're a stud, Kaidoh-senpai." Kaidoh's entry in his diary that night is rather confused.
I guess that's all for Kaidoh. But I'm not ready to be done! Kaidoh! Momo! Inui! Fuji! Supply closet! Waaaaah!
[ pause to
Anyhow, it's time for the creepy creepy part of the show where Hanamura checks Ryoma out. "It's hard for me to practice when you're staring," Ryoma says and in such a voice. "Are you hitting on me again?" he says. She follows him around and tries to entice him to come to Jyousei Shounan. She is not successful. She might have better luck with Momo or Taka, since they are somewhat straight for at least some of the time. (If Momo weren't otherwise occupied right now that is.)
Singles two begins: Ryoma vs Shinjyou. The atmosphere is oppressive. Nobody knows what to expect. And Sakuno snaps.
She leaps up and starts a cheer, all on her own. After a moment's stunned silence, Tomo joins in. Everyone chants along and Eiji, who can't bear to be out of the spotlight, jumps up with Tomo and Sakuno to lead the crowd. Everyone's spirits are lifted.
That's a good place to end. I think I need some beer to go with my cheese.