After taking a break last week, we are back with a double-header write-up for SK8 the Infinity—covering episodes ten and eleven. Thankfully, episode ten put a cap on one of the most frustrating storylines in the series, that being the discord in the friendship between Reki and Langa. After several episodes of miscommunication and bouts of jealousy, the boys put that all aside and—instead of having a big apology between the two—decide to just shut up and skate together. I thought this was actually a really poignant and satisfying way to conclude the storyline here and reaffirm our leads as best buds heading into the series climax. Sometimes moments like this, of simple character connection, speaks more than any monologue ever could.
There were also a few strange moments in the episode. Not only was Cherry hospitalised after Adam’s assault in the previous week, but Shadow is also randomly assaulted by some dude with a bat, saying that his girlfriend broke up with him because of Shadow. Did I miss something? For the life of me I could not recall who this guy was or what this was in reference to, but it opens things up for someone to replace Shadow in the tournament: that someone being none other than Reki.
Which leads us to episode eleven, which features the aforementioned tournament race with Reki taking on the sinister Adam. I must say, for a show that in its middle portion was losing the plot, it really brought it back in a major way here. The race between Reki and Adam is hands down the best the series has produced thus far. Reki having to use his intelligence to overcome Adam’s brutality and evil ways was a sight to behold. When Adam fails with his skateboard-to-the-face technique and falls face first into the mud, it was a truly cathartic sequence that made it all the more worth it having to deal with this piece of shit character for the past however many episodes. Although he beats Reki by only a mere centimetre, Reki has completely humiliated Adam and won the admiration of his fellow skaters in doing so.
While the ongoing business fraud and political corruption storyline remains the worst part of the show, the backstory scenes showing Adam and Tadashi as children was quite nice, although I find it to be a hard stretch to believe that his dad chucking his skateboard in the bonfire was the one moment that made Adam into such an awful guy. It just seems ludicrous. That said, the Adam and Reki race was the ultimate pay off for this villainous character, and we have one final race between Adam and Langa to look forward to for next week. I feel the series has, for the most part, redeemed itself now, but we will have to wait and see if it sticks the landing.