In Episode 24, Digimon Adventure‘s 2020 reboot reaches the climax of its first arc as our two Obvious Lead CharactersTM face the arc’s main villain. With impressive visuals and the appearance of one of Digimon‘s most dangerous evolutions, this episode closes out the main villain’s threat to the Digidestined in epic fashion. Read on to find out more, and be warned: you’re gonna get spoiled like a rich grandchild on Christmas Day.
Digimon Adventure (2020) has thus far greatly departed from its predecessor in terms of plot and pacing. While the original Adventure takes time building up each Digidestined and their bond with their partner — thus resulting in slower digivolution progressions — the reboot has been spitting out digivolutions left and right while keeping the camera mostly on Tai and Matt. The two main protagonists unlock Omnimon in the very first episode, and most of the Digidestined’s Mons pull Ultimate forms out their arses before Episode 20.
In contrast, the original Adventure limits most of the Digimon to their Champion forms until Tai’s Agumon attains his MetalGreymon form in the 20th episode.
In the reboot, this change heavily affects the impact of each digivolution progression. It also creates some plothole-like scenes where the Digimon can clearly go Ultimate to rekt their enemies, but inexplicably choose to stay in their weaker Champion forms to please their masochistic needs. But wait! Perhaps they can’t always reach their Ultimate forms because of environmental factors or the like? That explanation would hold water if it WEREN’T for the fact that the Digidestined — simply on seeing their partners losing — perform the equivalent of a McDonald’s customer asking to digivolve their fries to Extra Large.
Flaws notwithstanding, every episode has been a treat to watch especially for a nostalgic Digimon fan such as myself. And Episode 24 is a full-course meal: scrumptious animation sauteed with epic battle sequences, topped off with a sweet serving of deus ex machina in the form of T.K.
After twenty episodes of building up Devimon as a boss-level threat, our Obvious Lead CharactersTM clash with him in spectacular fashion. Tai and Matt fight tooth-and-nail, and even manage to unlock “Mode Changes” for their MetalGreymon and WereGarurumon — in case you aren’t confused enough about their digivolution charts. The Mode Changes grant their Digimon new attacks and abilities; for example, WereGarurumon adopts Gundam wings that allow him to fly and fire big blue lasers.
But even with these new Modes, Devimon remains a threat by upping his own ante; he evolves into NeoDevimon and then DoneDevimon. Episode 24 picks up with DoneDevimon’s appearance, and boy does he make an impression.
Whereas Devimon comes across as brooding and calculating like Darth Sidious, DoneDevimon is the equivalent of an evil Jar Jar Binks. DoneDevimon doesn’t even talk, instead giggling maniacally while he rushes on all fours at our heroes. The episode suggests that he’s lost his mind, which these characteristics strongly support.
As DoneDevimon starts gaining the upper hand in the battle, desperation sets in. Matt and WereGarurumon eat the ground while Tai and MetalGreymon get infected by The DarknessTM. Because Tai desires to protect T.K. so much, he pushes himself and his partner past all limits; this (plus Tai getting vored by Jar Jar Mon) forces MetalGreymon to digivolve — not to the beautifully-buttcheeked WarGreymon, but to what we may remember as one of the Dark Masters: Machinedramon.
Suddenly, Greymon’s previous digivolution sequences make sense. When Greymon evolves into MetalGreymon in previous episodes, a glowing silhouette of Machinedramon appears and consumes Greymon before fading away to allow Greymon to continue transforming into MetalGreymon. Episode 24 reveals that those digivolution sequences may have been foreshadowing this episode all along, and is a chillingly great way to tie in bits and clues from the season.
Tai’s Machinedramon seems only partially-formed, but it nearly stalemates DoneDevimon. As Tai and his partner lose more of themselves to The Darkness, T.K. leaps into action and calls both of them back to The Light. This allows Tai’s partner to evict his Machinedramon form and temporarily transform into his anthro furry form: WarGreymon. Since at this point the episode has run out of budget and time, WarGreymon immediately makes mincemeat of DoneDevimon (insert jokes about the word “done” here) and all is good with the world — for now.
In conclusion, this episode is a visual fest. Toei clearly invested a chunk of their budget into the animations alone; DoneDevimon’s movements, whether they be his slimy tongue flapping about or his four-legged crab-like sprinting, come across as legitimately creepy enough for you to wonder if someone on the art team missed their calling for making horror anime. And the heroes are shown as badass and powerful.
Storywise, the episode ends the threat of Devimon while setting up the possibility that he may have been used by a greater and eviler power, and it offers a satisfying amount of character and plot payoff. Unfortunately, the episode’s focus on our Obvious Lead CharactersTM leaves very little space for the rest of the Digidestined, with only a few minutes allocated to their involvement. In fact, they’re so removed from the Devimon fight that they literally spend this episode in another dimension dealing with random enemy blobs.
Still, for a fan of the original Digimon Adventure and even new fans interested in older Digimon storylines, Episode 24 is a treat to watch. With 66 episodes expected to air in all, I believe that the show thus far is worth picking up — and the rest of it worth looking forward to.
8 digitamas out of 10 digitamas (sunny-side up)