Readers, it’s your intro host Madelyn, and I am already loving Split Screen 3rd Edition. This week, Crash Landing on You delivers some mandatory Zumba, some illicit South Korean drama fandom, and an improbable run of real life Minesweeper, and My Hero Academia has daddy issues and ancestor/successor paywalls. Fire up Netflix and Funimation and let’s watch!
Crash Landing on You: Episode 1 (from minute 37)
M: Remember last time when I remarked on the refreshing simplicity of the plot? So much for that.
E: We crashed into like three more genres this week. Workplace comedy, murder mystery, and heist movie.
M: Business family drama too. Like a Mad Men or Succession.
E: Her family sucks. I mean, she sucks too, but like in a fun way? They just are the worst.
M: She sucks in an overly ambitious way, but she has the success to back it up. The brothers, whom we misidentified as hot police officers for a moment this episode, are just awful.
E: Meanwhile their wives are at a prayer circle, celebrating Se-ri’s apparently death. I guess that was just one of the wives, but they also suck, is my point.
M: The other wife was just as cutthroat in the back of the limo, so it’s universal.
E: The other wife mostly seems to not care rather than active celebration. That brother is more concerned with a scammer who has run off with his money. And is seemingly going to hide in North Korea? I don’t think you can spend your newly found money there.
M: I’m sure he’s just trying to go off the grid for a while, but I look forward to the love triangle between him, Se-ri, and Captain Ri, plus all the wacky North Korean hijinks that will ensue.
E: The North Korean soldiers being kinda a bunch of bumbling idiots is functionally working for me, but becomes deeply odd when I think about the context again.
M: Look, probably most North Koreans are pretty normal. I appreciate that they’re allowing more than just the love interest to be a pretty normal dude. Sounds like most of them were conscripted, so it’s not like they’re in the military because they’re especially “rah rah Supreme Leader.”
E: That’s fair. It’s mostly like the soldier galumphing through the wheat fields with his gun, chasing down Se-ri as like the funny music plays.
M: It had big “Talk This Sisters Play Fortnite” vibes. Master marksman.
E: Meanwhile the one guy at the guardpost literally catching up on Split Screen.
M: I wanted his show to be Boys Over Flowers so bad.
E: I wonder if that was a real drama that he was watching or if they made it up for the show.
M: The latter would be bold.
E: Elsewhere in the army, we got some murders going on, so maybe this unit is just, like, the rejects or something.
M: Yeah, this unit includes the drunk, the k-drama fan, the guy who just wants to make his country mom proud, and Captain Ri, who should probably know better than to step on a mine in a minefield. Meanwhile, the other guys are running elaborate artifact schemes for cash.
E: Don’t forget the one guy who does know how to defuse a mine. I get now why Captain Ri didn’t want him to call anyone for that. Since they would get in trouble for the South Korean lady running around.
M: Yeah, that does make a lot more sense. Good thing he did know how to defuse the mine! Seemed a little dicey for a moment.
E: Would have been a very short show.
M: Speaking of which, Se-ri sprinting through the minefield was also pretty improbable.
E: I hope that’s a running gag. Her inability to step on mines.
M: They keep her around as a good luck charm.
E: Judging from the preview, they are going to keep her. Unclear what the long-term plan is.
M: More like she is going to keep them. Looked like she had already taken control of the situation.
E: I mean, have you seen this gaggle of doofuses? No resistance there.
M: On the other hand, she literally disobeyed direct instructions about not crossing the fence, wandered for hours and then didn’t run away at the first sign of communism when she made it to the town.
E: I’m assuming she either couldn’t understand them telling her not to go over the fence or simply thought they were lying to her to get her to come back. I wonder if the direction Captain Ri told her to go was correct or not, I don’t remember if they showed which path she took.
M: Presumably he would have an incentive to steer her correctly. It’s pretty clear that they’re going to get in major trouble if anyone finds out that she’s here. He’d want her back in South Korea as fast as possible. Alternately, he did steer her to the minefield, but that seems pretty dark.
E: Yeah, they all lucked out that nobody in the village reacted to her presence.
M: They were a little busy.
E: Unclear still if this is actually real or not.
M: It’s clearly a real rumor, if nothing else.
E: It’s definitely a lot peppier than I would expect from a mandatory morning exercise, but I guess you want it to seem appealing so people will do it, so maybe that makes sense.
M: Exactly. Gotta have those Zumba vibes.
E: Also apparently the North Koreans do have accents, although I haven’t been listening close enough to pick up on it at all.
M: That seems like it’s going to be a problem for Se-ri, right? That’s ripe for some comedy.
E: It’s clearly not far enough apart to cause constant miscommunication, but certainly could see some sayings not translating or something like that. I’m sure the text at the bottom of the screen will let us know.
M: I’ll go ahead and roast myself for not recognizing the captain at the end for a moment without his hat.
E: Listen, we did think the brothers were hot policemen earlier, we are not good at this yet.
M: There are so many characters! I guess it’s sort of fortunate that they killed the three smuggler guys in an explosion shortly after introducing them, because it’s less to keep track of.
E: The thing is that no one has distinctive hair. I feel like in the early days of both Boys Over Flowers and Coffee Prince, I really relied on the hair? But everyone just sort of has normal haircuts in this.
M: In the early days of Boys Over Flowers, we were obsessed with Wig Watch.
E: Still unknown how many wigs were on that show.
M: But yeah, a lot of seeds have been sown for complicated plots in the background. This is mostly something that our previous two shows avoided, I think? Because they were about high schoolers or part-timers, there wasn’t as much space for big picture machinations.
E: Yes, this show definitely takes a huge step up on scale over the other two.
M: I mean it’s geo-political, so. It kind of has to. I wasn’t ready for the brother’s scammer to be a character, let alone one that is on the run from China to, presumably, North Korea.
E: I feel like maybe some of these subplots should have been saved to introduce in episode 2, just because I feel overwhelmed keeping up with the main one already.
M: As long as I get more flashbacks to Se-ri absolutely verbally destroying members of her family, I’m good.
E: Both shows had some real killer one liners towards parental figures this time.
M: Parents not coming off well on Split Screen. Anyway, no animals this week, except the police dogs, so we just have Romance Tracker.
E: Those police dogs were real and they were Good. I mean, in their core, police dogs are kind of a messed up practice.
M: You know a romance is going to be good when we get the classic “dude pushes lady against a wall” pose in episode one.
E: Still nothing in terms of side relationships, and I don’t really see how we will?
M: You know one of the soldiers has something going with a woman in this town.
E: That’s fair, that’s a possibility.
M: But yeah, a lot of men and only one woman in North Korea. A lot of married assholes in South Korea. Not too much side romance potential yet.
E: No Ga-eul or Eun-sae parallel, tragic.
M: Yet. Again, wait for the sassy North Korean friend she’s going to make in the village.
E: Oh, I just can’t wait.
My Hero Academia S5E2: “Vestiges”
M: I think you have a lot of feelings about this, so I’ll cede the floor, but the focus on Endeavor is a lot.
E: I feel like we talked about this sometime last season, but the whole concept of this plot in My Hero makes me uncomfortable. I think it gets points because I was worried last season that they’d be like “oh Endeavor had his atonement fight, now everything’s okay with him,” and the story is at least acknowledging that beating up a bad guy real good doesn’t fix his failures as a father. So that’s good. But it’s such uncomfortable ground? And I don’t know if I really want My Hero to handle a storyline about an abuser’s atonement. You know? It’s not that you can’t tell a story like that, but is this a show that’s equipped to handle it?
M: If they’re doing this to set up Endeavor’s death, I could get behind it. I think otherwise, it’s going to pull a lot of focus from a show that is titularly about a hero school to a guy who is not even on the PTA.
E: I don’t mind more focus on the pros generally, especially as the kids are having internships and stuff like that, but yeah the Endeavor plotline just makes me tense up every time the story does anything with it, and I don’t know.
M: It seems to me like it’s going to take a lot of screentime to do well. I’ll give the show the benefit of the doubt that the team has the capability of doing that; I’d just rather watch something else.
E: I do recognize the writing conundrum of this. If Endeavor is just a terrible human being, that forces the story in a direction where you have to be like “oh crap, the number one hero is a monster” and that’s a fraught story too. So there’s kinda just no way out of it.
M: Somebody should have thought ahead a little more while crafting this story. Maybe lightened up the abuse just a little.
E: I do think generally that is a problem with this series. Bakugo is introduced as an extreme bully and then it immediately pulls back, but there’s still that first impression of him telling Deku to jump off a roof. Which, he’s a child character so it makes me less uncomfortable for him to learn and get better for my own reasons, but I do get people who don’t like Bakugo because of that, you know?
M: Definitely, although I agree that showing the development of an elementary and middle school bully into someone with slightly more of a handle on his emotions in high school feels like much more appropriate subject matter for this show, and I think they handled it reasonably well. If only by creating some new trauma for Bakugo, but fine.
E: It makes me really wary of this inevitable Dabi storyline too. Like are they gonna have Endeavor defeat theoretically his child that he probably also abused – or at least neglected like his non-Shoto children? Like, I don’t love that? How do you even frame that?
M: I hope the backstory involves something more like an understandable accident. I dread the emotional fallout from that being what drove him to abuse the other children though.
E: Just everything about that pretty obvious storyline makes me so nervous. There’s just no way you can spin it and not make it incredibly messy. But yeah.
M: Yeah, that’s why I hope it’s all a fake out.
E: If it’s a fake out, I call bad writing on that front. It is so set up at this point, it’d feel like the writer was like “oh man they figured it out, let’s make a different twist for shock’s sake” instead of following it through.
M: Or maybe it’s some kind of All for One trick, where Dabi thinks he’s Endeavor’s son and has the son’s power but isn’t really. I realize that would be worse, but how much worse?
E: Anyway, that’s all speculation at this point, and we’ll have to see how it’s done when we get there. Meanwhile Shoto throwing down the shade on his dad was pretty good. Good scene.
M: The eye scar is too much for me. I didn’t need that.
E: *slurps soba aggressively*
M: I loved that Natsuo’s big blow-up was over not knowing that Shoto loves soba.
E: It is a fundamental part of his personality!
M: I know, and that’s what makes it so great. Anyway, Hawks is a triple, or maybe quadruple, or maybe just double agent!
E: He is very hard to get a read on, which I do appreciate for this storyline.
M: I was surprised the show tipped its hand so early. I thought they’d let me sweat him really being in league with the League for an episode or two.
E: I don’t know, it might have been too complicated to keep that up for whatever reason. To hide it from the reader, I mean.
M: Fair enough. I’m not mad about it, it just surprised me. It does make me think there’s another reveal coming and he’s really a triple agent.
E: Well, do you remember the one picture with the Todorokis from the season 4 ending?
M: I remember it being burned up. Are you talking about the baby Hawks pic that was also there?
E: Considering that whatever group this is seemingly trained him as an extreme child soldier, not just a normal MHA-universe child soldier, there’s enough basis for thinking maybe he’s not thrilled about that. Which makes him a good double agent believability-wise, but also a risk for being a triple agent. Or might be swayed down the line.
M: Well, when he finds out that Endeavor was also doing eugenics, that will probably shake his faith a bit.
E: That is interesting, actually. In terms of setting up interesting character dynamics, especially since he seems to be primarily in contact with Dabi at the moment.
M: Hawks’s childhood Endeavor fandom has to be a point in favor of him flipping to the dark side.
E: The Endeavor plushie was so little and so grumpy.
M: Who makes those? Did Endeavor really license his image for that?
E: You gotta get that public approval rating up somehow. Now he has a meme boy on his side.
M: Look Boy! Obsessed with Look Boy.
E: I love that he’s a meme. That’s great.
M: In episode 11, Shoto will reveal that he started the meme as a show of support.
E: I hope he makes one of those song remixes. Goes viral.
M: Yeah, could be the next Double Rainbow.
E: The last thing this episode was Deku having a big old vision.
M: It’s just so out of nowhere.
E: I think he’s had these before? Like season 2 maybe? So it’s not totally out of nowhere, but it was definitely longer and more detailed than it’s been before.
M: I mean that for the most part this show is not especially mystical-magical. There’s nothing specific about the Quirk of being able to pass down another Quirk that would allow you a spiritual connection with someone presumably long dead.
E: I’m assuming we don’t know everything about this Quirk after this. Since it gives you… you know what, it reminded me of that part in Kingdom Hearts 1 where Sora is hovering and Kairi and her grandma are talking.
M: I hate that comparison.
E: Deku was even kinda floating in that last scene.
M: But see, that makes sense, because Kairi’s heart was in Sora. Are you telling me that all of the hearts of One-for-All are in Deku?
E: Yeah! That’s good! That’s a good theory!
M: I can’t believe I said Kingdom Hearts makes sense.
E: Other than the fact that Deku is having these dreams, and maybe also unlocked a new part of his power from how he shattered the windows, the content didn’t really tell us anything we didn’t know.
M: I love that the original One for All brought down the paywall. You’ve only used 20% power? You can’t see the rest.
E: Please break five more bones to continue.
M: Aizawa is going to be pissed.
E: Aizawa’s too busy passing down his scarf to his new son.
M: Aizawa is too busy pulling a Cloud Strife and sitting out dinner with the Todorokis.
E: Aizawa is too busy adopting aggressive stray cats.
M: Eri would probably like that. She probably needs an emotional support animal.
E: That’s Mirio.
M: Stop that.
E: Realism watch?
M: I think I have to give it to Crash Landing On You! I appreciate that the soldiers seem like normal dudes. I appreciate that the uber rich family seems pretty awful. All tracks.
E: Nobody had a weird prophecy past vision dream, so that’s good.
M: Yeah, that was really the deciding factor for me.
E: Also Endeavor would have definitely lost his eye.
M: An eyepatch would make him Too Powerful. Lawsuit wise….hm.
E: Not a lot of lawsuits this time.
M: I mean, the scammer is in ongoing danger on CLOY. That’s pretty weak, but for once MHA kept its hands pretty clean.
E: I mean, a lot of not so great stuff happening to people on My Hero, just not a lot you can sue over.
M: Hard to make a case about being a Bad Dad.
E: Alright, Madelyn. Hit us with the first prediction.
M: Prediction one: Hawks has to do increasingly dumb side missions for the League of Villains. It started out as fetching coffee and making copies, but now he’s having to parade about in League mascot costumes and go bowling with Toga and listen to Kurogiri’s poetry. Visit him in jail to listen to his poetry.
M: Your turn.
E: Deku gets suspended for shattering his windows. He has to spend the whole day piecing them back together by hand so that the cracks will remind him of his failures. Meanwhile Aizawa explains some extremely important concept to the class while a student is absent, like usual.
Sad boy emoji. Glass emoji. Tears emoji. Lightbulb emoji.
E: Okay, you go.
M: My second prediction is that next episode, we just spend some mother-son time with the Midoriyas. A parental palate cleanser.
M: Okay, bring it home!
E: Shinso finally makes his appearance next episode. Everyone comments about how buff and bulky he’s become, especially Madelyn.
Emma here! Split Screen 3 continues, finally. It’s very exciting.
Next time! We are tossed screaming into a training arc and Se-ri has her own training in living incognito. Look forward to it!