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Recap: Digimon Adventure 02 E 8 The Digimon Kaisers Loneliness
During a soccer game, the kids watch as Daisuke deftly manages to trip over the person with the ball, while Taichi praises Daisuke for the play. After the game, the coach tells them that they’ll be playing against the Tokyo Youth Soccer Tournament champion team, Tamachi Boys F.C., in a practice game. Daisuke is excited to know he’ll be playing against genius boy Ken Ichijouji.

The kids look Ken up: he’s a skilled player who managed to break the record of goals in the soccer tournament by twice the previous record. Daisuke is looking forward to playing against Ken, because regardless of whether he wins or loses, he wants to play against the role model of all of the soccer-playing kids in the country. The other kids and the Digimon decide to attend the game and express their support.

At the game, Daisuke mentally prepares to face against Ken Ichijouji, while his friends cheer along the sidelines, carrying their Digimon like stuffed animals. However, all of them are disappointed when Tamachi Boys F.C. shows up and Ken is absent. None of his teammates know where he is, but shrug it off, as Ken tends to be a busy person. Taichi tells Daisuke that even if Ken doesn’t come, he still has to step up his game because Tamachi Boys F.C. is a competitive team, and although Daisuke is still disappointed at Ken not being there, the other kids’ support makes him happy.

The first half passes, and Odaiba Elementary’s team is in the lead, 1-0. Taichi tells Daisuke not to go on the defensive just because they’re a point ahead. Suddenly, Ken Ichijouji shows up to participate in the second half of the game, and is irritated to see that the Chosen Children are there. Ken apologizes to his coach, saying that he had some things to take care of, and prepares to participate in the second half.

On the field, Daisuke introduces himself to Ken, and Ken smirks after seeing the other kids cheer him on. The game starts and Ken takes the ball with remarkable speed, scoring a goal in barely any time. Taichi notes that Ken’s abilities are far above the elementary school level, and that they’re more comparable to those of an all-star of the youth league. Takeru deduces that Ken is so skilled because of Awesomeness by Analysis: he’s capable of knowing where everyone is on the field at all times.

With Ken’s strategic tactics, Tamachi manages to score 9 goals while Odaiba is unable to score any. In a desperate play, Daisuke aims directly for Ken and trips him over, robbing Tamachi of a tenth goal. Still, Tamachi wins against Odaiba at 9-1. Daisuke goes up to Ken to congratulate him and apologize about injuring Ken’s leg, but Ken shrugs it off and congratulates Daisuke on the play. Daisuke tells Ken that since they were going to lose, Daisuke decided to attack the captain as a last resort, and Ken tells him that it was the only time they couldn’t score a goal with that formation.

Daisuke returns in good spirits with the others, while the others congratulate him on his last play. Ken observes them walk home and smiles darkly.

The next day, the kids find that the Kaiser has set up a Dark Tower overnight in a place called "Death Valley". The kids decide to enter the Digital World right away and take care of it. As they walk around, everyone but Daisuke and V-mon vanishes into the ground, and shortly after the Digimon Kaiser tells Daisuke that he has his friends captive, showing all of them tied to ropes and hanging from a bridge. He releases a Deltamon behind them, telling Daisuke that he’s going to feed his friends to him and that if he wants to save them, he must bow to the Kaiser. Daisuke does it without hesitation, and when the Kaiser orders V-mon to humiliate Daisuke by stepping on his head, Daisuke commands V-mon to comply, wanting nothing but to save his friends.

The Kaiser delivers Daisuke a Sadistic Choice: he can choose one, and only one, to be saved. Everyone tied to the ropes tells Daisuke not to worry about them and to choose someone else, while the Kaiser relishes in seeing Daisuke through such humiliation for having broken his pride earlier. Daisuke eventually breaks down and tells the Kaiser to take him and spare everyone else, to which Ken promptly sends Deltamon after him.

Daisuke is promptly saved by...the other kids and their Digimon, the “hostages” tied to the bridge having actually been Bakemon in disguise. Pissed off at being tricked by the Kaiser, Daisuke has V-mon armor evolve to Fladramon, but the kids’ Digimon struggle against the Bakemon that are being tactically commanded by the Kaiser. Takeru notices that the Kaiser is able to analyze his opponents’ movements, and Daisuke, seeing their Digimon in a pinch, directly goes up to the Kaiser and tackles him down. Fladramon destroys the Evil Ring on Deltamon and, without a leader to command them, the Bakemon are in a panic and have their Evil Rings destroyed by Pegasmon. Nefertimon and Holsmon destroy the Dark Tower.

The Kaiser laments that he lost to Daisuke the same way twice, saying that he’d forgotten that Daisuke has a tendency to attack the leader when he’s losing. Daisuke sees the injury that he inflicted on Ken’s leg earlier at the soccer game, and the Kaiser removes his glasses, revealing himself to Daisuke as none other than boy genius Ken Ichijouji.

The Kaiser goes off, telling Daisuke that he’ll be taking him much more seriously from now on, leaving Daisuke upset that his role model turned out to be the Digimon Kaiser that he despises...

Tropes

  • Call Back: While at the soccer game, Ken has his teammates use “Last Formation A”. Later, when he sends the Bakemon after the Chosen as the Kaiser, he tells them to use “Formation A”, “Formation C”, and “Formation F”.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: When Miyako fangirls over Ken, Iori says that she had said that she wasn’t into younger boys, and Miyako yells that her father’s younger than her mother anyway, to which Iori shows exasperation at not having meant it that way. What’s particularly funny about this? The last episode reveals that Miyako does, in fact, marry Ken.
  • I Don't Like the Sound of That Place: The dub changes the already menacing-sounding "Death Valley" to "The Forbidden Valley of No Return". The dub dialogue also has Kari and T.K. quickly discuss how bad guys seem to always name their stuff like that while Cody points out that the place wouldn't be any less dangerous even if it were called "The Valley of Duckies and Bunnies".
Digimon Adventure 02 E 7 Hikaris MemoriesRecap/Digimon Adventure 02 Digimon Adventure 02 E 9 The Evil Rings Magic Run Wild

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