20 CommentsHunter X Hunter / By Shinmaru /

Hunter x Hunter 89 – Hard Truths

hunter-x-hunter-killua-frightened

Man, I was all set to write about what a smart cookie Gon is during his battle with Knuckle when all of a sudden Biske-chama starts lobbing giant truth grenades at Killua. God damn! Gon got roughed up physically, but Biscuit tore Killua a new one mentally. That’s the difference in mental training between Gon and Killua at the moment — Knuckle is telling Gon stuff he already knows, while Biscuit is telling Killua stuff he needs to hear.

The great part about Biscuit initiating the teardown of Killua’s walls is that all her criticisms are easily observable tendencies in Killua throughout the series. Gon is clearly established as the scrapper. He jumps in on all the really dangerous fights without hesitation, to the point where he is reckless. Obviously there are going to be situations where jumping in and throwing down without thinking is incredibly disadvantageous. At the same time, as Knuckle comments on, what experience Gon does have is from staring death in the eyes several times over. He would not be the fighter he is now without that recklessness, for better or worse. Meanwhile, it seems as if Killua is all too happy to play second banana to Gon at times. He always needs a plan, and if even the slightest thing goes wrong, he bails. Few are the times where Killua has fought when he wasn’t totally sure he would win. And ever since teaming up with Gon, Killua’s inner monologues are almost entirely consumed with evaluating the strengths of his opponents in ways that almost belittle his own — it’s almost as if Biscuit can read Killua’s mind when she says he assumes the worst case scenario at all times!

Obviously being cautious is not inherently a bad thing. Look back to the Yorkshin Arc, for instance. Every member of the Phantom Troupe was — and likely still is — several times more powerful than Gon and Killua. Rushing in and trying to match them blow-for-blow would be tantamount to suicide. But being cautious to the point where one waits solely for the perfect opportunity to act before doing so is silly as well. Gon isn’t acting blindly when he battles Knuckle; rather, he’s working to create his own advantages in the heat of battle, despite the fact that Knuckle is the stronger fighter. Gon is taking a shit situation where Knuckle knows his move’s weaknesses and turning it into opportunities for victory. That’s the kind of thing Killua can’t do at the moment, because he’s so consumed with plotting out his battles beforehand and playing them out in a safe space.

That worked with Genthru, but really, you can think of him as like Greed Island itself — a game, a simulation. There were elements in that game Killua, Gon and Biscuit could use to create the most advantageous opportunity for themselves. They can’t do that in NGL. The Chimera Ants control the playing field. Nobody can even approach their headquarters without Neferpitou being instantly aware of it. Netero, Morel and Knov are whittling down the Chimera Ant forces as much as they can, but eventually they will have to strike. There’s no room to be wishy-washy. That’s ultimately what Biscuit is teaching Killua. He fears failure, because in the world of assassins, failure means death — either physical death or death of reputation. Removing that fear of death and calculated risk taking is what Killua needs most.

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That in turn highlights Gon’s development even more. From the beginning, Gon has been portrayed as a hothead who isn’t really book smart, but the danger there is assuming that means Gon is stupid. He’s far from that; his instincts make him quite intelligent. With every battle he’s in, Gon comes to know himself, his strengths and weaknesses just a bit more, and this gives him a better perspective on tinkering with his approach to fights. Knuckle is right when he says Gon needs experience — the more experience with varied situations, the more opportunities there are to evaluate strengths and weaknesses and for Gon to tweak his approach. That’s why Killua does himself such a disservice by letting Gon take the lead so much. It’s like Pokemon: There’s only so much training available. Eventually Gon is going to come up against someone who has every conceivable advantage against him. What’s Killua going to do when he doesn’t have the strength to match?

hunter-x-hunter-biske-chama-too-lewd

Biske-chama abs > Mikasa abs

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20 Comments

  1. arcanes
    Posted July 22, 2013 at 10:25 pm | Permalink

    I was a little worried beforehand, but this arc is awesome so far! And Gon is GAR. Enough said.

    Loved how Biske handled Killua. Just what he needed to hear. And Biske should definitely go and smack in the face the girly boys from Free! and man them up. Bah.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

      Gon is beyond GAR and just straight up scary now, haha.

  2. Gunslinger
    Posted July 23, 2013 at 3:44 am | Permalink

    The irony here is that even if you consider Gon’s Nen power, instinct and growth Killua is probably much more dangerous than Gon. Also I love how this series shows how hard it is for opponents to fight Gon. Right since the hunter arc this little kid’s been taunting his opponents to do their very worst.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

      Hm, in a way I’d probably agree since Killua has demonstrated in the past that he can and will straight up kill someone.

  3. Pusswookie
    Posted July 23, 2013 at 4:44 am | Permalink

    I love Biske-chama’s Jojo form.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

      It’s pretty great!

    • Posted September 23, 2013 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      Rozen Maiden mode, Jojo mode, fujoshi mode, Biske-chama will always look as regal as ever. Great character.

  4. gedata
    Posted July 23, 2013 at 6:09 am | Permalink

    Dat budget prioritzing

  5. Loz
    Posted July 23, 2013 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    Way back in episode 24 when Killua and Silva were having a father son heart to heart, Silva asked Killua to promise him he would never betray his friends – So I assume Silva know fully about Killua’s weakness. Likewise with Illumi as shown in episode 20 telling to never face a stronger opponent.

    What I find interesting now given Bisky’s lecture is that Silva had a bit of a sinister foreshadowing proclamation ( had that sort of evil grin on his face) about Killua towards the end of that episode. I wonder if somewhere down the line we really are going to see some sort of falling out/ desertion from Killua on Gon.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

      Some of that is definitely part and parcel of the assassin trade. They have to create the perfect opportunity for battle. Because Killua did not have Nen abilities like his brother and parents, but was still expected to be an assassin, of course they’d drill it in him to avoid fights with people who would kill him. However, like Biscuit says, that habit is difficult to break even now that Killua is powerful enough to defeat people.

  6. Chipp
    Posted July 23, 2013 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    At least Mikasa has something other than abs…
    http://www.chansuki.com/sys_images/images/big/f/6A.jpg

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

      Biske-chama is not that lewd.

  7. Mormegil
    Posted July 23, 2013 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    This arc is not being kind to Killua…

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      This arc isn’t being kind to anyone!

  8. Someone Else
    Posted July 24, 2013 at 5:41 am | Permalink

    When I think about it, Gon is like the usual shounen protagonist and Killua is the “unorthodox” protagonist like L or lelouch but Togashi can’t choose so he is like fuck it, I’ll use both and there we have it :D

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

      Gon is the usual shonen protagonist but brought to its logical conclusion, so he’s fucking crazy.

  9. gedata
    Posted July 24, 2013 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    lol at Killua’s face as he watches Biske-chama go uber mode

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

      Killua has lots of great faces in this episode.

  10. BOY
    Posted July 24, 2013 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    As someone who has read the manga, I am so insanely jealous that you’re watching this show without knowing how everything plays out. You’ve got such an enjoyable road ahead of you.

    • Shinmaru
      Posted July 25, 2013 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      Every week is a surprise!

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