Sunday, 1 August 2010

Giant Killing - Episode 18

After seeing Natsuki save ETU's blushes with a late but spectacular goal, the good news is that episode eighteen of Giant Killing throws us straight into another game, this time against Albireos Niigata after what has been four consecutive draws. The bad news is that we join our new-found favourite team a goal down in a match being played in an absolute downpour, and the away team are a long way from their hard-working and cohesive best to boot.

The frustration surrounding this performance boils over at half-time, as Akasaki berates his team-mates for a yellow card he received in the first half. While this seems like one Hell of an over-reaction for a yellow card (indeed, even ETU's supporters make a pretty big deal out of it), it kicks off what threatens to become a full-on brawl in the dressing room between players as everyone weighs in with their opinion on the team as it stands. While chaos reigns, Tatsumi simply watches events unfold for a while, seeing it as confirmation of what he already knew - That his team still lacks cohesion, featuring as it does some players who are happy with the way the side are playing while others and hungry for more.

Eventually however, Tatsumi steps in and gives the players his own usual set of words designed to inspire and unite; by all accounts this works, as although the game ends in defeat we're told that the second half was a major improvement in terms of performance. I say we're told this because we don't actually see for ourselves - Instead we're whisked away to rejoin Dulfer, the German manager of the wonderfully named Osaka Gunners who was so enamoured of Tatsumi when they first met, and the next opponent for our enigmatic protagonist. Dulfer seems keen to test his team against ETU at their best, and we soon get to see why, as they crush their opponents 8-0 (yes, 8-0, that's no typo) in their own match, courtesy of a complement of four forward players who can tear apart an opposing defence on their day.

So, what will Tatsumi's game plan be to defeat Osaka? It's perhaps unsurprising, but he seems to be preparing to fight fire with fire by going with a more direct and attacking approach of his own - something that I'm looking forward to immensely, truth be told.

This move to a more attacking formation is probably why this episode chose to all-but ignore the competition between the club's strikers that has been so important in previous weeks, aside from a brief shot of Sera on the bench (and a mention of his second half performance) and an equally brief moment or two featuring Natsuki (or Natsui as I'm sure I saw on his shirt at one point). This actually made this episode a little disappointing in some respects - Although it was important to bring the problems building over recent games to a head, the way this was done was a little clumsy in both the way it started and the way it was resolved, although perhaps I'm just sore at missing out on the second half action from the Albireos Niigata game. Nonetheless, it looks like we're building up to another big match that will doubtless get covered by the series in plenty of detail, and I for one can't wait, because it threatens to be another classic match-up for this show.

1 comment:

JW said...

"...I'm just sore at missing out on the second half action from the Albireos Niigata game."


GK had better make this next episode worth the wait to see ETU kick it up a notch. *super-pout*

And enough of You-Know-Who's displays of soccer douche-dom. "Wah, Wah, Where's the confidence?" he says? I want to smack him in his stupid block-head.


But all in all it was a good episode. :)