Mostly proceeds without distinction, but the final act is promising
Borrowing the words of James Berardinelli, the best way to describe the story of this episode is "unwieldly, with no clear indication of where it is heading". Most of it just jumps between the three kids loitering or pondering, but very little of it stands out. I know it's only the third episode, but I can't help feeling that things need to either become more focused or move along more efficiently.
After an overdrawn resolution to the preceding cliffhanger, it is established that Takato and Henry share similar ideals concerning their digimon partners, though this could easily have been accompanied by a less banal conversation, which is indicative of the general quality of their interactions. The subsequent material tends to meander, with perfunctory roles for numerous supporting characters and unnecessary little attempts at thoughtfulness (do digimon dream it's got to be for a reason ). Plus, there's only so many times that Takato can freak out over Guilmon's whereabouts before it grows annoying. The best scenes concern Rika, who, with her competitive streak and unique relationship to her digimon partner, has thus far proved the most interesting of the trio.
The fight at the end is somewhat abrupt, with both Rika and Henry just popping in out of nowhere, but it provides a glimpse of the intensity that "Tamers" is known for and leads to questions regarding the nature of these monsters' evolution, questions that all of the kids will eventually ask. Sure, Terriermon just wanders into the middle of the fight like a complete blockhead, but his behavior as Gargomon is unexpected. You can really feel Rika's fear in those closing moments. Overall, a flimsy story but very good ending.
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