Onoda struggles with his role as the sole climber for Sohoku while Teshima makes team plans as its new captain.
Ride.02 - "What Makishima Left Behind"
Ooh, ooh! Pick me! I can answer the question implicit in the episode's title! Ooh, ooh!
No. Makishima did not leave his climbing soul behind for Onoda. He left Onoda a secret weapon! He left him another climber! No talent, no technique. Just perfect for Sohoku! Junta Teshima is a climber!
I honestly did not see that coming. In the first season, we saw Teshima as the strategist to get Aoyagi across the line first. That suggested that he was an all-rounder. One flashback scene with Makishima telling Teshima he's a climber felt a little ret-conned, but considering how Teshima turns himself into the perfect support rider, first for Aoyagi and now for Onoda, it makes sense.
There were only two scenes that I remember from the first two seasons that hinted that Teshima had the chops to be a good companion for Onoda on the hills. First, when he gave Onoda his pedals and shoes to complete the training camp and second, when he was the first one to embrace Onoda at the Inter-High finish line. I'm getting excited again for all that special team camaraderie. How else is Onoda going to get hopped up on nakama power?
I've talked before about how special is it for a cyclist to have a hand on his back in support, but out of context, Onoda's reminiscing looks straight out of a horror film.
Seeing Onoda's struggles on training rides reminds me of that episode when he lost power going up the team's usual training mountain because of the pressure from being chosen for the Inter-High team. Get that kid nakama power stat! Don't worry. Teshima's working on it.
This Teshima guy is a good mentor! Too bad we didn't get to see more of during the first two seasons, but we were in full tournament style battle mode with that stage race. Teshima has his chance to shine now.
Yeah. Makishima was always that awkward. Just talk with your legs, Maki-chan!
I could hear a little resentment from Onoda, or maybe wistfulness, when he cried out that "I still had a lot to learn!" Feelings of abandonment and then feeling guilty about those feelings is understandable, considering how abruptly Makishima had to leave.
Oho. We have another "weak" rider to add to the title for Yowamushi.
"You'll find the light," Teshima told Onoda. Good. We're getting much more development on this glowing orb of riding inspiration that was just dropped on our heads with Midousuji's featured episode last season.
I just noticed that Teshima started making the same kind of gestures that Makishima liked to make while talking and riding. Cutting between Makishima at the airport and Teshima started the foreshadowing what Maki-chan was about to tell Toudou.
Toudou and Maki-chan Best Couple OTP. Just sayin'.
Sohoku doesn't just have Onoda as a climber. Climbers, Makishima told Toudou. Who!?
Teshima!? That was a good reveal. I really liked that.
This little scene with Teshima's buddy Higashida was a good way to surprise us with who Hakone's new climber was going to be.
Wait, wait, wait. This show is going to try to get one of the characters to date? A girl?
Whew. Of course not! When Teshima closes his eyes, all he sees is Onoda winning the Inter-High. Fujoshi swoon...
That Iwase girl looks cute enough. Maybe we'll see her again.
It looks like Teshima's plans are coming together.
Aoyagi's getting strong enough to beat Tadokoro and he'll have Naruko backing him up in the sprints. Teshima just needs to keep working hard to replace Makishima as Onoda's climbing buddy.
Alright! Let's see what Hakone is up to. Their starting six lost four in one swoop, but they have lots of strong riders to choose from.
Izumida has a nice new haircut. That Kuroda guy had different hair color the last time we saw him.
Ah. That tall kid now goes to Hakone and his name his Ashikiba. He's supposedly a climber. Well, if the Tour de France champion can be a tall skinny guy, why not this guy being a climber? It's another body type suited for the hills. Look at Makishima. But he's not that tall.
I liked this breakdown of their loss by the seniors for Izumida's benefit as the new captain.
Yeah! Arakita the Mad Mutterer is back!
They figured out that Sohoku had gambled on unpredictability, namely Onoda. They still don't know that his secret weapon is singing the Love Hime theme and I'm getting chills with the detail that Teshima is a good karaoke singer. This season's nakama scenes are going to be epic!
Onoda is a marked man. It's like a domestique somehow winning a big race from the shadow of his designated leader but then imploding when he's named the leader from the start. We'll see how it goes with Onoda this season.
Notice the kid next to him taking his own picture with his cell phone!
I don't think Ashikiba is going to get the right look at Onoda who is basically starting over. Maybe this is part of Teshima's plan too.
Ha! Imaizumi had to remind Onoda that he's not alone for this hill climbing race. It's him, Teshima and Onoda. The sprinters Aoyagi and Naruko are sitting out, naturally.
We got good looks at Sohoku's bikes of Pinarello, Cannondale, Scott, Corratec, BMC and Tadokoro's Specialized. Hakone threw in Kuroda's Kuota and Izumida's BH. Ashikiba hit his head on an Anchor. Last season, I couldn't figure out what that brand was supposed to be, so I thought it was a Raleigh playing off a pun on Toudou's Ridley. Nope, it's just Japanese brand Anchor, a subsidiary of Bridgestone.
It's kind of weird seeing Onoda keep crashing from pedaling so hard he janks his bike off the road. I mean, on the first day of the Inter-High, he caught up to his group by riding on the gutter's lip! Like I keep saying, he needs to get his nakama fuel topped up!
Aw. We miss Maki-chan already. Oh. He's just cutting onions in Maki's Kitchen. I love how these omake match the character designs of the manga more closely than the proper episodes.