Tenfold Funeral vs. Serious Sideways Jumps!
One-Punch Man’s follow-up to its impressive Season 2 premiere doesn’t waste time before getting to the good stuff. Garou makes a memorable debut at the Hero Association HQ by showcasing his brute strength with a ferocity that could rival Saitama. The episode is aptly named after the deadly villain – “The Human Monster” – who claims he has more in common with monsters than humans. But even though this very short episode (barely 22 minutes) is named after him, we still don’t know much about Garou’s intentions. It’s safe to assume (having not read the Manga) that Saitama and Garou will battle at some point this season.
Apart from Garou’s appearance, most of the episode centers on Saitama, Genos, Miss Blizzard, and even King on an entertaining adventure, featuring big action and some unexpected emotional depth from Miss Blizzard’s narrative arc. After starting out her story as a bully to the lower-ranked Saitama, it was compelling to watch her transition after getting humbled by the world’s most powerful puncher. Her confession about not being able to live up to her Class S, Rank 2 sister – Tornado of Terror – was also heartwarming, demonstrating that all she really needs is a group of misfits to embrace her.
And speaking of misfits, the look of bewilderment on Miss Blizzard’s face when King visits Saitama and Genos is hilarious. From her perspective, she’s unable to imagine a world where heroes just hang out and play video games, and she desperately wants to be a part of their group. Outside of Saitama’s friends, most of the heroes we meet are self-serving and territorial. This unique example of camaraderie among heroes is a stark contrast to the rest of the Hero Association’s members. Seeing how many heroes Saitama can entice into his little group could be an entertaining storyline in future episodes.
Genos’ bonkers fight against Speed-o’-Sound Sonic is a good indicator of how much Saitama’s pupil still has to learn. While Genos’ new upgrades look cool against the higher-ranked speedster – he doesn’t even land a punch. He also seems to be taking unnecessary risks against an opponent who is clearly better than him. Towards the end of the fight – in a moment of desperation – Genos says that he will “lay waste to the entire area” since Sonic is going too fast for him to see. While his tactic might have worked, it would have destroyed most of the area, including his sensei’s apartment. Genos’ desire to be better sometimes gets in the way of him making rational decisions. And his volatile personality makes him unpredictable, which is great from a suspense perspective, but you have to wonder how long he will stay under Saitama’s tutelage before he gets impatient and finishes his quest on his own.
Lastly, what do you think of Saitama and Genos’ official superhero names? Genos gets Demon Cyborg “for aggressively attacking numerous monsters with dauntless courage,” according to the English translation. And Saitama, “based on his appearance,” will now be known as… Caped Baldy! For such a short episode, it’s nice to have a fun post-credit scene like that.