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Recap / Miraculous Ladybug S05E19 "Pretension"

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Inspired by Marinette deciding to have a heart to heart with Gabriel over her romance with Adrien, Kagami decides to confront her own overbearing and controlling mother, Tomoe. However, an unexpected visitor ends up throwing everything into chaos.


  • Abduction Is Love: Argos ends up kidnapping Kagami in order to save her from her controlling mother. He even admits that he followed her everywhere to learn everything about her. In the end, the two teenagers end up falling in love with each other.
  • Abusive Parents: Félix described his own posthumous father Colt Fathom as "a thousand times worse" than Tomoe is to Kagami.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: Before being kicked out of the Agreste Mansion by a disapproving Gabriel, Marinette runs up to Adrien's room and proudly declares that she'll always love him no matter what; how she'll never abandon him and will always be there for him.
    Marinette: I love you, Adrien! I won't abandon you ever! I'll always be there for you.
  • Bait the Dog: Gabriel praises Marinette while having dinner with Adrien at the end of the episode, seemingly having changed his mind about their relationship, only to reveal he'll be sending Adrien to London to keep them apart.
  • Body Horror: Gabriel's Cataclysm wound has spread from his arm to all the way to his neck, chest, and half his stomach. At this rate, it won't be long until it reaches his kneecaps...
  • Call-Back:
    • Gabriel brings up his nephew's spy monocle from when he was snooping as usual. And Matagi Gozen uses it to track Félix in his civilian form.
    • Gabriel also brings up Marinette's contest winning hat design from back in Season 1.
    • Similar to "Adoration", Gabriel compels Adrien to go to his room, and despite desperately wanting to disobey, Adrien is physically incapable of leaving his room until Marinette barges in a few minutes later.
  • Combo Platter Powers: By arming herself with multiple Alliance Rings, Tsurugi is able to receive multiple Miraculous powers when she's akumatized into Matagi Gozen. She's given Venom which manifests as laser arrows, Sublimation which allows her to come up with the power to track any target, Multitude so she can create a squadron of soldiers, Voyage so she can travel much faster and Clout which much like Venom, also manifests as laser arrows.
  • Dark Lord on Life Support: Gabriel has a machine that funnels the power of the Kwami into him in an attempt to reverse his Catacylsm wound. However, all their power simply isn't enough to counter the power of Destruction, and the wound only briefly retreats before reasserting itself the second their power is no longer keeping it in check.
  • Death Glare: Nathalie gives one to Gabriel as he fumes over their failure to heal his Cataclysm burns, knowing full-well that Gabriel brought his impending death upon himself. She gives him another one when he wants to send Adrien to London to keep him away from Marinette.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The Miraculous of Pretension is the rooster, which is among the powers used by Matagi Gozen. Gabriel hypocritically accuses Marinette of pretension in her relationship of Adrien, believing she has delusions of grandeur, and he accuses Tomoe of it when she struggles to keep Kagami under control.
  • Dramatic Irony: Ladybug and Monarch finally have a face-to-face solo showdown, and it's in their civilian identities, completely unaware they're talking to their arch-enemy, arguing over Adrian and the fashion industry.
  • Enemy Mine: Cat Noir actually suggests to Ladybug that they let Matagi Gozen take out Argos and save Kagami like she wants, so they'll have Argos at their mercy to punish him for screwing them over last season and take the Peacock Miraculous back. However, Ladybug rejects the idea since working with someone under Monarch's influence in any way is a bad idea. And unknown to either, Tomoe is in league with Monarch and wants to take all three of their Miraculous anyway.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Gabriel thinks Marinette doesn’t really love Adrien and is just "under the spell of the world Gabriel's created", being starstruck by Adrien's fame and good looks. The truth is that Marinette just loves Adrien for who he is.
  • Facepalm: Kagami for a brief second after Félix admits to stalking her.
  • Fantastic Slur: Félix rejects the term "sentimonster," feeling that it dehumanizes the beings.
  • Go to Your Room!: Gabriel orders Adrien to go to his room while he talks to Marinette alone in the kitchen.
  • Halfway Plot Switch: The first half of the episode is about Marinette confronting Gabriel over her relationship with Adrien. The remainder of the episode shifts focus to Kagami and Félix.
  • Holding Hands: Kagami and Félix do this at the end of the episode.
  • Hope Spot: For a moment, it appears that Gabriel can save himself by draining the Kwamis' powers to heal his Cataclysm wound. It almost works before the machine short-circuits.
  • Ironic Echo: Gabriel prefaces his speech to Marinette by calling her merely “a baker’s daughter”. At the end of the rant, she points out that he doesn’t prepare his pancakes properly, something she would know as “a baker’s daughter”.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Gabriel does describe the fashion industry at least somewhat accurately during his rant to Marinette. It doesn't work as a metaphor for human relations as he intended, but he's not a famous fashion designer for no reason.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Marinette's reaction after leaving the Argeste estate after giving Gabriel a "Reason You Suck" Speech about his pancakes.
  • Needle in a Stack of Needles: Argos snaps his fan into several pieces and sticks a feather to a passing pigeon so his scent trail will be all over the place and impossible to track. He similarly leaves behind personal items when not transformed to achieve the same effect.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain: Intentional or not, Matagi Gozen nearly hitting Kagami with an attack makes her question her mother.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: When hiding from Matagi Gozen, Kagami suggests to Félix to leave her so her mother won't attack him anymore; he refuses, as he wants to free her from her mother.
  • No Social Skills: Kagami deems Félix inept at this after he kidnaps her just so he can get to know her better.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: This is the reason because Félix has taken an interest towards Kagami. Kagami eventually realizes this herself throughout the episode that she goes as far as to defend him (which surprises him) when Ladybug and Cat Noir catches up to them in the sewers.
    Félix: I feel like you and I… we're the same! We have so much in common and yet we're so different. I've never met someone like you.
    (Later in the episode)
    Kagami: I'm nobody's prisoner. Félix is not your enemy, He's like me! He doesn't know how to express himself...Everyone is wrong about him! Including me.
    (Kagami smiles at Félix as he returns the smile, touched that she came to his defense. This turn of events surprises and confuses Ladybug and Cat Noir.)
  • Tempting Fate: Kagami, when hiding from her akumatized mother with Argos, tells him she doesn't need him to free her from anything and that she could free herself and throws him on the ground, then she's proved wrong when Matagi Gozen finds her and tries to paralyze her, only to be saved by Argos.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Gabriel gives a brutal breakdown to Marinette by criticizing her lackluster aspirations as a fashion designer while declaring that she's unfit to be with someone as significant as his son. Marinette, after declaring her love to Adrien, leaves while returning the favor by telling Gabriel that his pancakes suck for being made from an obsolete recipe and claiming that no one accepts his outdated beliefs anymore.
    Marinette: And that’s the good thing about being a baker’s daughter. I don’t even need to try them to know that they’re tasteless.
  • Replaced with Replica: Tomoe demands that Kagami give up her family crest ring, and Kagami does. Later, Félix tells her the one she gave up was a fake, and gives her back the original. Apparently Félix used his pickpocket skills during the time they were together to replace her ring with a duplicate. (The implications are clear — if Kagami is a sentimonster, she still has her free will.)
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: Cat Noir suggests just cooperating with Matagi Gozen to let her save Kagami since all of them see Argos as an enemy, but Ladybug rejects the idea, thinking that cooperating with someone under Monarch's influence in any way could be dangerous. Unknown to Ladybug, Matagi Gozen is working with Monarch willingly and is mostly using this an attempt to capture all three of their Miraculouses under the pretense of wanting to save her daughter, meaning she almost certainly would have betrayed them afterwards.
  • Sadistic Choice: Gabriel offers to help Marinette achieve her dream of becoming a famous fashion designer if she gives up on being with Adrien, but warns her that she won't have either if she rejects his offer. Marinette refuses to accept his offer and resolves to fight for her relationship with Adrien.
  • Scarily Competent Tracker: Matagi's War Dorsesnote are able to find any person of interest. They even create a colored scent trail that leads them to their target(s). However, she ultimately falls victim to the same loophole that Ladybug and Cat Noir exploited against Safari; the trail goes cold if they detransform. While she does have Félix's spyglass to track him in civilian form, he gets around that by creating false trails, both as Argos by breaking his fan apart and scattering it, and as Félix by dropping small personal items (cufflinks, a pocket watch).
  • Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids!: Gabriel rebuts Marinette's claim that fashion is about making people happy, explaining how he sells products by making people chase an unattainable ideal of perfection.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Gabriel and Marinette's discussion takes a brief detour into their ideas on what fashion is; Marinette (the Idealist) sees fashion as a way to help others express themselves while Gabriel (the Cynic) sees the fashion industry as a machine that manufactures fads while giving "the illusion of choice", with him having a Godlike power to shape and mold everyone through his industry.
  • Smug Smiler: Gabriel with Adrien's reaction after announcing he's sending him to London at the end of the school year, knowing Adrien can't disobey him and one to Nathalie when he tells her that she can't stop him from doing so.
  • The Stinger: Félix meets Kagami in private and gives her back her family's ring after replacing it with a replica, telling her that can decide her own fate as the two begin a relationship together.
  • Two Roads Before You: Gabriel boils down his offer to Marinette using pancakes as an analogy; eat the "pancake" he gives her with any of the toppings he provides for her (him using his connections to make her a fashion-designer without Adrien in her life), or "refuse the pancake" and have nothing left but "childish dreams" in its place (lose Adrien anyway and give up a bright future served to her on a plate). Marinette sees it for the hollow offer that it is and refuses to be intimidated.
    Marinette: You know what the problem is with your pancakes? Way too much flour, not enough butter. You're using an old, completely outdated recipe. No one likes them like that anymore. That's the good thing about being a baker's daughter. I don't even need to try them to know that they're tasteless.
  • Villain Has a Point: Gabriel points out to Tomoe that it was her daughter who cost them a chance to acquire Ladybug and Cat Noir's Miraculouses.
  • Wham Line: At the end of the episode, Gabriel seemingly approves of Adrien's relationship with Marinette, with a twist:
    Gabriel: She really is an incredible young lady. Such passion, such determination. Enjoy your time with her, my son. These are precious moments, creating memories you will cherish deeply... when you're in London next year.
  • With Us or Against Us: As Ladybug attempts to reason with Matagi Gozen, saying she'll get Kagami back safely, Matagi Gozen simply states that anyone who isn't with her is her enemy.
  • The Worsening Curse Mark: See Body Horror above.