I’ve made it clear I don’t think too highly of Platinum End‘s writing. Through this entire seasons it’s oscillated between depressingly dull and bafflingly inept, with only occasional flashes of competence. I personally consider dullness the bigger sin, since you can make a show that’s dumb as rocks, poorly written, tasteless as all hell, and still have it be entertaining. Just look at Future Diary. That show was a screenwriting disaster and I ate up every trashy second of it. So even if I’ve given up hoping this show can be good, there’s still room for it to be fun to watch.
We aren’t quite there yet, but with this episode we are much closer. Though the show definitely puts its worst foot forward with the opening minutes. We start by reiterating Hajime’s love “revelation” from last week, before a scene of him loudly declaring he’s betraying Metropoliman that goes on way longer than it should. This is a villain who is supposed to be lethally ruthless and exacting, stopping at nothing to eliminate his enemies. He spent weeks setting up a whole red herring with Girl A just to possibly blow up a single God Candidate. Yet he spends several real-life minutes arguing with Hajime over the phone before finally deciding to leave his hideout, then spends even more time patiently waiting around for his enemies to regroup and talk. With every encounter, it feels less like these characters are in a fight to the death and more like they’re all trying to organize an impromptu game of Red Rover on the playground.
Thankfully, once everyone’s accounted for, the show steps hard on the gas by introducing three of the goofiest minibosses you’ll ever see. At least one of them has a name, but I refuse to learn it because none of them are real people. They’re original characters made by a teenager on Deviantart who loves the first Suicide Squad movie. One is a Metal Gear boss fight, complete with half his dialogue consisting of listing off the specs of his many, many guns. Next is a fetish nurse who doubles as a lethal sadist, gets off on killing random people, and looks like an operator I’ll pull in Arknights someday. The only disappointing one is the kid in the rubber mask, though that one falls on the anime. In the manga he’s actually the weirdest of the three because he is very clearly wearing a (spoiler alert for the link) Donald Trump mask, for reasons I still cannot begin to figure out. Sadly the anime went with a more generic face, presumably because nobody wanted to continually render a photorealistic Trump face for weeks of their lives. Understandable, but it really loses something in the transition.
The other two, though, admirably assist Platinum End in doing a triple backflip while jumping the shark. It’s almost a shame the first guy is so quickly dispatched, but I’d rather the show speed through its loudest, dumbest, edgiest moments rather than strangling the fun out of them with extended dialogue scenes. Killdozer has no patience for that kind of nonsense. All he wants to do is shoot people while loudly yelling about how much he wants to shoot people. And by god he does it all so quickly the show nearly delivers a good action scene as he levels half an amusement park before getting his arm cut off with Hajime’s katana. It’s too bad he won’t be sticking around, but the brightest sparks burn out the quickest.
Thankfully, Goodbye Nurse is sticking around until at least next week, as she reveals she conveniently created a horrific super virus that would literally annihilate humanity, and is keeping it in a glass case right next to her tiddies, presumably for the extra padding. Thus she lays down the biggest, dumbest ultimatum yet: our heroes have to let her liquefy one of them from the inside out, or she’ll literally kill the entire planet. To say things escalated quickly would be to say the ocean is damp, and it’s a hilarious ride the whole way. Like the serial killer mind control BDSM from a few episodes back, it’s purestrain trash without the faintest whisper of good taste, and the fact it’s played this straight turns it into comedy gold. Any lingering chance Platinum End had of me taking it seriously have been stabbed, shot, disemboweled, and put on display for public viewing like the head of a 13th century London criminal. And I loved every second of it.
I don’t expect this to stay the case, though. This kind of ill-advised lunacy takes dedication to maintain, and nothing from Platinum End makes me think it has that kind of commitment in it. It’s too slapped together and inconsistent to become a truly legendary trash fire. But for this brief moment we can all gather round this blazing trash can and warm ourselves by its putrid flames.