Sorry Nina, your shop’s insurance doesn’t cover acts of villainy.
The last two Allen women are under attack by Steel Ruler, and I-Guy has shown up to help. The battle grows in intensity as X-On, Lisa, and a bunch of evil reflecteds join the fracas. End result, the baddies get away with Nina, and murder Maggie. Oh, and X-On got Flaming Fury’s Master Weapon…. er.. power. Sorry, The resemblance to Mega Man still gets me. After the fight, the baddies seem almost sorry for how things went down, and back off. X-On spins around and beats the crap out of I-Guy. If he hadn’t been showboating and making the battlefield chaos with his hologram show, someone could have been there to support Eleanor in saving Maggie and Nina. At a motel, Eleanor reveals her encounter with Wraith to X-On. He figures they could use her as bait to bring him out of hiding again. She doesn’t like this plan one bit. Meanwhile, back at the I-Cave, Ian Izzet has another tizzy because he doesn’t think he’s being given his due as a hero. He decides to go out on the street and perform to blow off steam. Wraith appears to him, and tells him to retire as a hero, along with a cryptic threat to his friends. Well, it isn’t a threat. He’s already done it. All four of I-Guy’s support crew are dead, but they still have one last gift to give him. Is that KITT from Knight Rider? Man, this show is all over the place.
Oh, X-On. Thank you. You’ve done what I’ve wanted to do since episode two. I am just so tired of Izzet as a character. He’s whiny, egotistical, and capricious. Oh, and unless something cool happens with him actually doing something (now that the show has brought the plot to him), he’s completely superfluous. However, this episode actually gave me a moment where I feel like he might be worth watching. That look he gets after hearing the last of his friends’ posthumous message is… Well, it’s on now. Up until that point, I didn’t care, and really just wanted to watch X-On whup him some more. I get this inkling that this event might push I-Guy over the edge to become a bad guy, but one that hates Wraith. Suddenly, I realize that if X-On is Mega Man X, then I-Guy is Vile. Go ahead. Google Vile from Mega Man X3.
See what I mean? Very similar. And the two are both very angsty characters. How many active bad guys are there, other than the final bosses of Wraith and Mister Mystic? Eight. Just like a Mega Man game. If I-Guy shows up next episode and the car transforms into a mecha like Vile’s robot ride, then it’s official, Stan Lee loves the blue bomber. I’m sorry to say it, but as many things Stan Lee created in the past that are now an integrated part of the collective consciousness, his more recent work is looking more and more derivative.
Gonna be honest, I wasn’t expecting Maggie to die. Moreover, I wasn’t expecting for it to happen on screen. Telefrag is no joke as a way to die. We are left with a bit of a mystery, though. Both Allen women are dragged down by the guy who phases through stuff. Nina was covered in a green glow, then vanishes right before Maggie dies. Was this someone else teleporting her to the bad guy lair? Was it Eleanor doing it subconsciously? Or was it Nina herself? If so, could that suggest a connection between Eleanor and the Allens. Possibly why Wraith “needs her power”. He’s collecting up the teleporting people.
So, I’m jumping on my computer, getting ready to do my anime reviews, and I see the title of the episode: “Team I-Guy”. After all this time despising Izzet’s character, seeing an episode devoted to him made me want to grab some strong alcohol before starting stuff going. I’m pleased to announce I did not, in fact, need that booze. Sure, the art on this show blows chunks, and the dialogue forgets that the characters give next to no facial expression, so there’s no point to all the awkward silence. However, the action here was actually entertaining and, dare I say, epic. Watching X-On take down Flaming Fury then I-Guy actually made me happy. The animation still isn’t as good as… wow, probably even Macross, but it is better than the show has done so far. There’s a good amount of complexity to the shots during the fighting, so it was visually impressive, even if the art sucks.
The voice acting was uninspiring. That’s it. Even though what was going on was dramatic, and the characters visually emoted well, none of that carried over into the voice acting. It didn’t sound like Eleanor was actually that upset or angry over the goings-on, even while getting up in Steel Ruler’s grill. Huh, I guess that’s a literal turn of phrase since Steel Ruler literally has a steel grill for a mask. When she is informed that X-On thinks she might be used as bait, Eleanor then stomps off in a huff, and her voice acting sounds bratty and juvenile. There just wasn’t anything in the audio to emotionally grab on to. EXCEPT, there is one bit that did get my attention. The demo version of “Sky Show”. A tiny chunk of the final production version of this song plays on repeat every time I-Guy is on screen. It’s muddled and loaded with bad effects. However, hearing Izzet do the acoustic demo of the song was quite sonorous. For once, I could understand all of the lyrics… as poppy as they are. To be honest, I actually enjoyed this version of the song, and wonder if I could get a hold of it.
When we get to the end of this episode, it was better than I was expecting, but it still isn’t amazing. It likely never will be. It might get better in its plotlines, though, so I’m not willing to give up on the show in its entirety. Fun action and a couple of shots with really great expression keep me entertained enough to not care that the rest of the show is just plain lazy. I give this episode six souped-up supercars out of ten.