Hunter x Hunter 9 – Red Eye
Step off, spider. Just step off.
Definitely starting to feel this remake now that it’s getting to the good stuff. This is actually a perfectly paced episode, I think — draws out the challenges to the point where there’s a little bit of tension, but not so much that the challenges lose any novelty they possess. Let’s face it: The candle challenge and that ugly doucheprick trying to intimidate Kurapika into giving up without throwing a single punch aren’t exactly the most clever plot points in the world. But the former at least forces Gon to use his head a bit to be victorious, and the latter mostly serves as a peek into Kurapika’s obsession. He hasn’t really done that much up to this point, so there needs to be an opportunity for Kurapika to fuck someone up and remind the audience how awesome he is supposed to be.
Getting back to the candle challenge, I wonder if anyone is disappointed that Gon gets through it so easily? Gon’s victory actually strikes me as quite logical, especially for a shonen story. The serial bomber dude is so wrapped up in what he assumes is an awesome, clever plan that leaves zero room for error that he can’t see how anyone could possibly bungle it up for him. But he drops hints along the way about how to defeat him, particularly when he mentions that he isn’t strong physically, which of course means that Gon can bum rush him and the bomber dude will be unable to do anything about it since he’s such a weak little girly man.
It’s a fun challenge to showcase Gon’s straightforward personality, too. “HM, I THINK I WILL TAKE THE LARGE CANDLE BECAUSE IT WILL BURN DOWN SLOWER.” “I THINK I WILL BLOW YOUR CANDLE OUT TO ASSURE VICTORY.” Such a little rascal, that Gon.
Yeah, I bet he’s glad Kurapika wasn’t on the other side, eh?
I kind of laughed at the bit of dialogue where Kurapika says he goes nuts even if he just sees an actual spider rather than a spider tattoo. Was line in the original anime? I can’t remember off the top of my head. But, man, Kurapika must be unbearable during Halloween (if the holiday even exists in the world of Hunter x Hunter, that is). Just imagine being one of Kurapika’s buddies during the holiday: You see that he’s mostly all right, but he could use something to take the edge off a bit, so maybe you take him to a Halloween party or whatever. The people who own the place have gotten into the spirit of the holiday, and they deck the place out a bit. They’ve got normal Halloween shit everywhere — ghosts, jack-o’-lanterns, fake corpses, the whole nine yards — but in the corners of the room they’ve also got fake spider webs and spiders. And that just sets Kurapika off to the point where you’re never invited to any parties ever again.
And god help you if you ever decide to dress as a spider for Halloween and greet Kurapika.
My other favorite part of that whole skirmish is Killua being bored out of his mind the entire time despite that dude and his steroid show, and only taking interest when Kurapika pulls out the shoryuken on that guy. I bet Killua is like a mini Hisoka in that at that moment he probably wanted to fight Kurapika really badly. Gotta test that fighting strength, after all!
Definitely looking forward to the next episode. I wonder if it will get to Killua’s part or stretch out the Leorio stuff for an entire episode? The latter is a possibility, but I guess it wouldn’t surprise me to see Leorio’s challenge take up a whole episode since there’s some extracurricular stuff to go along with it. I’m mostly curious to see Killua’s challenge, if only because that will probably be the strongest baseline yet for how far the new Hunter x Hunter is willing to go with certain things.