Anime, Anime Season's Writings
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Love Thugs – SK8 the Infinity (Episode Five) – Season’s Writings

Last week’s episode of SK8 the Infinity ended with Reki being hit by Adam’s brutal Love Hug technique and being seriously injured. We open up this week’s episode with the aftermath of that chaotic S-race beef: Reki has been hospitalised and suffered head trauma and an apparent broken arm. He won’t be able to skate for the foreseeable future and, after witnessing the Love Hug firsthand, he is begging Langa to not skate against Adam.

While Langa acknowledges the danger presented by Adam, there is a part of him that feels an inescapable desire to skate with him. Reki recounts that his best friend in the past was seriously injured while skateboarding and gave up skating forever, leaving behind his friendship with Reki in the process. Langa promises that, even if he falls victim to Adam, he will not stop skating.

The majority of the episode from here was really about Langa training for his S race against Adam. Cherry, Joe, and Miya all chip in to advise Langa on how to potentially survive the Love Hug and possibly defeat Adam.

After a period of training, it’s time for the big S race, and it is clear that Langa has learned from what happened during the race between Reki and Adam. He performs the Casper slide, which both shocks and impresses Adam, and he counters the matador dance lock by embracing Adam closer, rather than instinctively pushing him away. Adam is stunned, and so he pulls out the final stop with the Love Hug’ It looks like Langa is done for, but he suddenly pulls out a front-flipping pop shove it—perfectly countering the Love Hug. Adam has been stopped dead in his tracks.

It looks like Langa is about to win the race when, mysteriously, the police rock up and begin chasing off all the skaters and putting an end to the S race. With the S race location now privy to the police, does this mean the end of S? Hard to say just now, and judging by the preview for next week—which indicates a beach episode—we might have to wait a bit longer to find out.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this week’s episode; that said, I am concerned that Langa is being written as somewhat unbelievably good. He has dominated in his S races so far, and despite being new to skating he is mastering techniques far beyond rookie level. It remains the hardest part of the series to suspend your disbelief with, but I am still enjoying it nonetheless.

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