Dragon Ball Super “The Approaching Wall! The Final Barrier of Hope!!” Review
And then there was just one. I think we all knew that it would come down to Jiren versus Universe 7, but who would have imagined all that led to this point? Vegeta has pushed to levels you wouldn’t have expected from him in the DBZ series, and accomplished feats he couldn’t have achieved through less genuine means. Android 17 constantly proves that it takes more than power to keep up with the best. Then you have Frieza of all people who has actually made this entertaining as a villain, despite the fact that they aren’t being subtle about him not being present, yet also not eliminated.
It was really about time that we could see Jiren releasing his true power. My only criticism of his character up to this point has ever been that he hasn’t been taking things as seriously as he should have. He had both Dyspo and Toppo on his side and he couldn’t have taken advantage to get serious? Come on now, that is something you expect from Goku because he’s a fool. With that said, the comparison in power was thrilling to see in action as now Jiren can handle three on one, where before it seemed he was having a hard time managing two. I still feel as though they have to be very convincing for Goku and Vegeta to pull off a miracle against Jiren, but it is cool to have someone legitimately strong to turn this into a boss fight.
What changed for Jiren this episode was the journey we finally took into his past, to learn what truly motivates him to obtain the super dragon balls. I mean it only took how many episodes for them to decide to flesh him out? But doing so at all is better than nothing if we’re being honest. It made sense in the attitude he carries, and why he seems so drawn to power.
It really added to the excitement of this fight that Android 17, Vegeta, and Goku could all pull off an assault like they did against Jiren. This wasn’t a time where anyone could afford playing tough guy or lone wolf, so everyone on the same page to this extent was a big step up. Not to mention how amazing the animation looked with these four facing off through the destruction of the fighting stage. Nothing was straightforward anymore which made every action visually engaging. Nonetheless, the effort they were all putting into this coordinated attack was intense for the fact that they were all pushing it to their limit. You could only get so pumped when you knew that there was only so much they can currently take and dish out. At least a certain someone was able to jump in and shake things up, even if the thought of being right about said person was fleeting.
Android 17 versus Jiren was impressive in spite of the difference in power. I feared that he may be someone abused this episode for the sake of showing just how strong Jiren is. I’m glad that they quickly set aside that fear. Even to go as far as to show some new tricks from 17 in the heat of the moment. That was a time to truly appreciate that no single fighter in this tournament was simply relying on one-tricks like they would have in the past. His ability to strike with more than his fists was also surprising. You would be shocked that this guy right here could be the most human.
This week’s episode was the first time that I can say I felt moved by the stakes involved in this tournament. It is too easy to get caught up in the action to forget what everyone is fighting for. Last week Vegeta’s actions were a quick reminder, but this time around Android 17 took that sentiment to new levels. Dragon Ball Super “The Approaching Wall! The Final Barrier of Hope!!” so far is one of the best episodes for striking that balance between character development, plot progression, and action. They made who was eliminated matter.