Oh, Leorio, you should know by now not to fall for such an obvious trap, especially against someone as shady as Tonpa . . .
We finally catch a glimpse of all the other folks in the Main Character Brigade this episode. Sometimes I wonder how Leorio manages to function in this world. Every other episode he’s getting fooled by someone who’s obviously trying to play him, or he’s screwing up an activity or something. Even for a comic relief character Leorio is a failure. But that’s partly why I love him. He looks like he should be the adult of the group, but he’s not, and he tries so hard to be cool, but he’s cool only intermittently. At least he has the best fashion sense of the main characters. A nice blue suit will never go out of style.
Tonpa and that monkey guy have the right idea, though. It’s to one’s benefit to team up here . . . provided you can trust your partner. Leorio and Kurapika make a good team because they’ve already become friends during the course of the Hunter Exam. They know each other to a decent degree: Each can be sure that the other won’t suddenly betray him out of nowhere and yoink his ID badge. Also, Hisoka and our shapeshifting friend have clearly been in cahoots from the start, although they’re not really teaming up here so much as hanging out after a hard day’s work of beating the shit out of people, haha. Poor sniper lady really got a raw deal in the new Hunter x Hunter. Did she even have a single line here? She at least gets to talk a bit and actually shoot in the original anime. And I don’t know if the subs are weird (watched the HorribleSubs version, which is of course the Crunchyroll translation), or Mr. Shapeshifter is just a dick, but she’s referred to as a he! It would be kind of hilarious if Shapeshift-san didn’t even bother to see whose ass he kicked and just took the ID badge without looking.
Getting back to teaming up . . . I’m willing the bet the Tonpa and Mr. Monkey Connection would have eventually dissolved like so many pro wrestling tag teams. Obviously Tonpa would have done some betraying eventually. He’s too big an asshole not to do that. Even if it would be to his benefit to keep an alliance going until the end of this round because he’s such a doughy marshmallow, Tonpa would not be able to resist stabbing someone in the back, simply because he hasn’t done so in a while. Mr. Monkey I’m a bit less certain about, but anyone with a thieving monkey is either a jerk (because he taught the monkey to steal) or a thief with a heart of gold (think Aladdin), so I suppose he could go either way. Maybe he’d be a bit smarter about things, but he’d probably dump Tonpa at the first sign of trouble.
And now Gon is playing the waiting game with Hisoka, who seems to instinctively know that this part of Hunter x Hunter requires a good deal of tension, so he plants his ass on the ground for a while just because. One of Hisoka’s favorite past times must be sitting and around and doing nothing, because he sure did a lot of it during the previous round of the Hunter Exam, too. This episode does a decent job of establishing Gon’s utter fear when faced with the chance to steal Hisoka’s ID badge. The above screenshot has a bit of the blurry camera thing going on with Gon’s sweat dripping into his eyes, and man, I wonder how Hisoka didn’t hear Gon’s heavy breathing.
It’s kind of funny how many people converge into this point. You’ve got Hisoka in the grove, the shapeshifter, Gon hiding in the bushes, the dude with the spear and the dude who is stalking Gon right now. The guy stalking Gon must be really good at hiding if there are two people around who don’t notice his presence!