Blue Lock episode 20 aired on Saturday giving fans even more heart-pumping, intense moments, and the birth of a new side of Nagi. As we are creeping up on the season finale with the biggest matchup of the series so far, this episode was full of more character development, glam, and just a straight-up great soccer match. There are some funny things that crossed my mind the second time around watching the episode but most importantly we got to see Nagi’s growth.
Nagi – The White-Haired God
Nagi has sort of been a comic relief at times and has proven his potential to become a mainstay character since we were first introduced to him. The nonchalant novice of soccer developing into one of Blue Lock’s most versatile players adds a unique character to the overall story. Not to mention it’s understandable why he’s a favorite character for fans of the series. While he’s just now honing his own ego, Nagi’s never had that interest in crushing anyone or really caring about anything at all. But finally seeing him craving that want to crush someone, and that “someone” being the top players at Blue Lock, is perfectly timed writing that wouldn’t have worked with any other character at this point in the story.
While most can get lost in the glitz and “glam” of the goals and art of Blue Lock while watching high-intensity episodes, it’s crucial not to overlook that development doesn’t just happen in the slower episodes of the series either. Nagi went from being someone who didn’t care about anything, to just playing soccer because it’s what Reo and him could do together, to actually becoming his own person in this episode. Nagi’s two-stage fake volley goal was so impressive it actually pissed off the number one player at Blue Lock. And what gets me the most is he probably just learned how to do that after training for a night with Chigiri in their bedroom the night before the match. Like Isagi basically stated, Nagi feels like he’s a god at this point.
Hype Moments Took Another Leap
It’s safe to say at this point that Blue Lock is never going to stop delivering on hype moments. It’s a series, more specifically a sports series, that just knows how to build upon each hype moment that just happened. It’s never one is less exciting than the other. It’s just a never-ending staircase leading up to the next big moment. Even before Nagi’s epic goal, we had Rin’s incredible goal as well as Aryu’s. But the focus is on what Blue Lock did with Rin’s compared to Aryu’s that drew my attention the most.
When we take a look at Rin’s, his goal was self-served. He took on every angle against Isagi all by himself and scored his own goal. While the goal itself wasn’t the highlight, it’s how the episode formed the hype around it that made it spectacular. This is actually the first time in all of Blue Lock where a choir starts playing for a player that’s followed up by an intense orchestra that left me with goosebumps. His calm demeanor, sharp eyes, and giving Isagi props for recognizing what he was going to do, only to have him basically say “but you’re still not good enough to stop it”, was prime villain energy. It was as if we were just introduced to the main villain of Blue Lock as we were in My Hero Academia Season 6 with Tomura Shigaraki and Trigun Stampede with Millions Knives.
Meanwhile, Aryu’s goal was completely focused on how it was going to be scored. The entire sequence was about Bachira’s pass, faking out Isagi, and scoring on a header by reaching the ball before a certain point was a lot more analytic-based compared to Rin’s. The only thing that disappointed me with Aryu’s goal is that he headed the ball so hard, he gave himself a nosebleed…and that’s it. I was hoping it rattled his brain a little so he could stop the “glam” bit for at least the rest of the episode–nope. But it’s worth noting that their goals all start with Isagi’s mistakes. He was faked out by Bachira’s pass for Aryu’s goal and Rin leaped over him for his goal as well.
A Single, Pointless Problem with Blue Lock
This problem is extremely minor in all aspects and isn’t even worth talking about for the most part but after giving the episode one more watch I couldn’t help but think to myself–when is the AI goalie ever going to make a save? I understand a lot of these goals come from good quality shots, but every single shot that has actually missed is always off of the crossbar and never the actual AI goalie blocking the shot itself. For once, I would just like to have a humorous moment where it stops everyone dead in their tracks because they can’t believe the AI goalie made a save. As I said, all the goals scored have been high-quality shots so it makes sense why they’re scoring. But just once I would like to see a low-quality shot that’s actually stopped by the AI goalie in one of these matches.
Blue Lock Episode 20 Wrap-Up
At this point, I don’t see Blue Lock ever disappointing me ever again as it did in the season premiere. It has proven me so wrong in so many ways since that first episode and I seriously can’t see this series getting anything but better from what it already is. The puzzle pieces transition between Nagi and Isagi towards the end of the episode ahead of Nagi’s goal was pure genius on the Blue Lock production staff’s part. Not to mention, with Bachira and Isagi both heating up as the match goes along, only a wild imagination can guess what’s going to happen this week. With character development, hype goals, and a little bit of humor between Baro and Tokimitsu, Blue Lock gave us another perfect episode.
Episode 20 rating: 10/10
Blue Lock episode 21 will air on Saturday, March 5. If you enjoyed Blue Lock episode 20 and watching Nagi become a god then make sure to vote for it in our weekly poll!
Images via Crunchyroll
©Muneyuki Kaneshiro, Yusuke Nomura, Kodansha/”Blue Lock” Production Committee