Mob Psycho 100 – Episode 11

I laughed, I cried, I got hyped and BAM. Reigen, the best man of this year, flops in a drop of a hat. The cliffhanger chimes its bell, signaling that the episode is over. With mocking disregard to the viewers’ emotion, we’re left to endure the shock for a week, with nothing but our fervent imagination to fan our optimism that Best Man is still a-okay.

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This is Mob Psycho 100 at its best. The last time I found myself giggling, shedding manly tears, and getting goosebumps from the top class animation was with Mob and Teru’s brawl. Again, like what MP100 has proven that time, it has total control of all the emotions it wanted to convey without seemingly disrupting the pace and the flow of the presentation. The changes in tune doesn’t stand out like a sore thumb, it simply feels all too natural. It’s the kind wherein you can basically fit anything in the puzzle, regardless of the piece’s size and shape, the end-result will still be a cohesive final product. MP100 molds it in a way that it uses its characters’ emotions and personality to bring a performance that’s fun and isn’t overly done — MP100 characters and style is just that malleable. We all know that MP100 is frenetic, then again, I know I’m speaking in semantics here (it’s not easy to describe something as abstract as an emotion, yo), I really do feel like the characters and how they are portrayed is its strongest element. I actually felt like MP100 was a blank canvas from the start, and that analogy still feels true to this day.

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Take for example Reigen’s stylish signature moves. We’ve seen it time and time again, yet it never fails to make me chuckle regardless of how exaggerated it is. However, its emotion from this episode, in comparison to the first (or any other episode he used it) packs a different kind of punch. It made me laugh silly, yes, but it also made me proud of this guy for how sincere he is with Mob. It’s almost the same as with episode 9’s sakuga — where I dubbed it one of my favorite single episode of all time (after this week’s episode, I don’t if that’s still true). It wasn’t just any kind of sakuga. It’s a sakuga with contextual emotions brimming from each scene. It’s hard to explain to those who aren’t as absorbed with MP100, as you’ll first need to buy yourself into the characters and their circumstances in order to fully enjoy its full grandeur. After all, MP100‘s characters is its centrifuge.

Now, let’s talk Reigen. Reigen is awesome. Reigen is cool. Reigen is the kind of good man I want to be when I grow older. I’m looking up to him as much as Mob venerates his master. I’m glad I believed from the very start that Reigen is going to show us something wild and fantastic, and that belief certainly paid-off. You see, it was right to call Reigen as the guy who embodies maturity in MP100. Well, yeah, he’s a fraud and he probably has one of the most childish personality here, but, it’s how MP100 is. There’s a dichotomy in each characters’ personality that you’ll easily miss if you label them immediately with stereotypes — it’s one of the message MP100 is telling us after all; we are all flawed, but our flaws shouldn’t be the only thing that needs to be seen by others. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Cliche? Yeah, I admit. However, isn’t that exactly what transpired during Mob and Reigen’s flashback scene? I know Mob is dense and innocent for his age, yet, despite of that, he managed to find the good in a guy who reeks of cigarette, alone in his dingy corner room office, who probably is a fraud of some sort. There’s some irony in their relationship, but it’s an irony that brought forth one of the most dynamic and entertaining duo I’ve seen in a while.

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Short thoughts:

  • Nah, knowing Reigen, he’s probably still alive. Again, the laws of logic doesn’t apply to this man. Or, wait, perhaps we shouldn’t over complicate things too much like from last episode’s? I don’t know. It’s Mob Psycho 100. It’s unpredictable, and I love the agony of not knowing what’s going to happen next.
  • There’s a comment in reddit (can’t find it anymore) about Reigen quitting his smoking habits after he met Mob. I love this small touch to detail because it easily adds a backstory to Reigen. In a way, he did find something in Mob to hold on to. And no, Mob isn’t just his golden goose.
  • Reigen’s teachings felt like it’s taken out of his experience. I really want to know more about this guy and how he came to be. My theory that he was once like Mob is kinda plausible. He did embrace what he is, after all, and trudges along the world of the adult with confidence and finesse.
  • Reigen doesn’t need sakuga to be cool as much as he doesn’t need psychic powers to validate his own worth.
  • Mob hugging his bro Ritsu was the first tear drop. Reigen snapping Mob back to sanity and telling him ‘it’s okay to run away’ is the second. As someone who has experienced a fair amount of shitty moments, I can’t outright express my relief from hearing that simple advise. All I was told is that I have to be strong and swallow whatever crap fate feeds at you — too much shit to handle and we may lose it. We’re frail. We’re humans. Keep that in mind. You can run away; it’s fine to run away so long as you can come back later as a better person. Not all battles has to be fought, yo.
  • Yep. Reigen is indeed the most mature here. He did say how childish Claw was regardless of how serious they are with their petty ambitions.
  • Reigen taught Mob kindness, and it’s certainly a lesson Mob learned well as evidenced by his actions and choices.
  • The battles in MP100 isn’t just about who’s going to win or who’s going to lose, or much less a ‘good vs. evil’ narrative. It’s also about ideals. Claw is correct to a certain extent. Ritsu and Teru isn’t exactly wrong about resorting to violence when push comes to shove. I was led to ask myself if… are Claw’s efforts worth the trouble? Is it really the right way to cope and adapt in this world? Do we need to change the world, or do we need to change ourselves and mature? Perhaps we’re over complicating things. I don’t know. I love this layered meta-narratives in MP100.

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That’s it for today! It’s… another great episode. I ain’t ashamed of advertising MP100 as Summer’s best. I checked the manga and it seems like we have a fair good amount of material left to animate for another season. I’ll see you guys next week for the finale!

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