Saturday, February 17, 2018

RttE Season 6 Thoughts

While watching the new season, I jotted down all my thoughts and opinions of the events as I first saw them. I'm gonna put all that here... so you could think of this post as my live reaction to the final season of the series!

Season 6

Episode 1:
Although the reveal of Johann being a traitor didn’t really shock me that much, the first episode of this series did a good job of highlighting all the times he has caused dangerous events and hindered Hiccup and his friends. I am not sure how much of this was actually planned out early on, but the writers certainly did a pretty good job of making this thing look really elaborate! I love how he even references how he has been trying to take Hiccup down ever since Breakneck Bog. Wow… now that was a long time ago! It’s crazy to think that this series has been airing for so long! Although… Toothless getting caught in the net was lame. I mean, how on earth would anyone have been able to plan THAT out? Plus, I was looking forward to seeing him take someone down without using fire… all scary and intense XD

I’ve never been 100% sure how much I like Dagur changing into a good character. One of my favorite episodes was when he was hunting Toothless back in DoB, and threatened to wear his skull as a helmet. Him being good always feels a little weird… especially when he is good and sensible as opposed to manic. Still, his portion of episode one was kinda nice. It was interesting to see them develop him as a chief. It kinda reflects what Hiccup’s future will be. 

Episode 2:
In episode two, I’ve gotta appreciate the fact that Snotlout looks particularly pleased when Ruffnut gives his idea credit. Are they hinting at his future infatuation with her?

Stoick being paranoid in episode two and overreacting feels out of character. Sure, he reacts strongly to threats (see the first mention of Drago in the second movie for an example), but he doesn’t begin making stupid choices. He also doesn’t keep plans just to himself. I feel like this is a shallowing out of a great character for the purpose of the plot of this episode… Yeah, Hiccup and Stoick’s “falling out” and “argument” feel forced. Since when has Hiccup traded insults with his dad? For that matter… since when has Stoick ever directly insulted Hiccup? The whole thing feels off.

Why does running into a ballista generate more pushing force than shooting it with a blast that can knock over towers or topple mountain-sized dragons? 

I do like Stoick inviting Hiccup back to Berk. As much as I like the Edge, Berk is the OG location of HTTYD. After all, it plays a really crucial part in the climax of the second movie. It’s a place that every HTTYD fan feels at least a little attached to after all :)

Episode 3:
I still think the Wingmaidens are contrived. 

Hiccup getting captured is always a good plot device. It does feel very in line with the HTTYD universe. After all, Vikings are big on kidnappings and ransoms. Plus, even when Hiccup has the BEST dragon to protect him BY FAR, it doesn’t make him invincible. Realistically, it would still only take one wrong decision to put both of them in serious peril (like when Valka manages to steal Hiccup off of Toothless’s back). Sadly, this capture only lasts a short while. I was hoping to see things get a bit more intense and drawn out. 

Krogan having a dragon that is loyal and bonded to him makes this continue to feel out of place. Sure, it’s not impossible, it just feels more advanced than anything Hiccup appears to have seen in the second movie. Now we can’t even say “Oh, they aren’t dragon riders. They just chain them and hold on.” So, why did Hiccup seem so surprised when Eret mentioned another dragon rider? What is so special about Drago commanding the loyalty of dragons is his cronies can do it?

Episode 4:
Well, this starts off feeling like a filler episode. After all, we are in the middle of a dramatic conflict, and now the big problem is the Ingerman family history. Which of the kids don’t have dragon hunters in their family tree? Wasn’t there a war with dragons for, I don’t know, hundreds of years on Berk? I big part of HTTYD is letting go of past hatred and generations worth of hurt. You’d think Fishlegs would’ve picked up on that now. I mean, Hiccup’s dad is a legendary dragon-slaying chief, and his best friend is the most nightmarish dragon species. 

HAAAAAA! All the kids want to do is pet Toothless. This show has a VERY accurate idea about what everybody actually would want to do if they found themselves in the HTTYD universe :D

Wow, this new dragon is UGLY. Well, at least its face is ugly. The rest of the anatomy is pretty cool! Oh… I get it. This dragon mimics the fire of its enemies. Kinda a neat concept… but pretty hard to explain biologically!

Episode 5:
This also looks like a filler episode, but it may not be. Gruffnut always did seem kinda like a dud character to me… especially since he is Tuffnut’s model with different hair. However, you gotta commend him on finally saying what Astrid first thought when she saw Toothless, “You know, Toothless is a terrible name for this dragon”.

Wow, if they are turning nineteen… then these events must be happening within a year of the second film. After all, the twins are nineteen in the second movie, and that has been confirmed by multiple sources.

Oh, and of course the scam artist double crosses you. Man, should’ve seen that coming!

Episode 8:

DAAAAAAAW’ Toothless reacting to Tuffnut’s fist bump is the cutest! That being said, Stormfly shouldn’t be the fastest, no matter what happens… but we beat that issue to death back during the RoB days!

Interesting that Viggo basically blackmails Hiccup into helping him. Hiccup is usually a very trusting character, but after all Viggo has done, it’s not surprising that he is wary. I’m kinda disappointed in Toothless accepting the fish. You’d think either he or Hiccup would be smart enough to not take food from someone known for their treachery and cunning.

Although the sword fight looked very cool, what with two flame blades, it seemed kinda odd for Hiccup to initiate the fight so directly. After all, he’s not ever been one to go straight to physical violence to solve a conflict. I don’t know. I understand that he’s supposed to have this vendetta problem with Viggo, but I’ve never thought that that matched his character (after all, his lack of bitterness and resent are some of his best character traits in the first movie). 

Heck YEAH, the Skrill is back! Oooooooh, getting chills and feeling spooked already! I love that he’s in the snow. Ever since Glory’s webnovel, I’ve loved the concept of the Skrill being a cold dragon with cold breath. The surviving in ice was the first canon instance of this, but it’s super cool to see the dragon living in a snowstorm. Also, it’s about time they quit making Singetails look so overpowered. I really don’t see why they are so deadly. Anatomically speaking, they're a big target. Sure they can shoot in many directions and see all around themselves, but that shouldn’t make them invincible or anything. With a body like that, I also am dubious of how quickly they could fly. Their long, flat form looks ideal for gliding of hiding close to the ground, but not for quick turns and aerial dogfights. 

Hmmmmmm… seeing a villain train the Skrill is pretty cool. I still think all of this kinda clashes with where things stand in the second film, but it’s neat all the same. I’m getting the vibe that Hiccup is going to have learned a lot of his second movie tricks from Viggo. It’s an interesting concept, but I’m not sure what my opinion on it is!

Now that is cool. Seeing a Skrill mow down a flock of dragons feels so right. After all, it’s blast is SO deadly, and it strobes across the sky and knocks down everything it touches. That’s a Strike Class dragon if I ever saw one! (Speaking of which, why don’t we ever see Toothless do this? I mean, at night he should be able to easily own entire hoards of enemies. Sigh…) 

Funny to see Johann as the only one who keeps his head during turmoil. Whether he’s shooting down a Skrill or ignoring the petty arguments of Viggo and Krogan, he seems to always think he has everything under control. I suppose that comes from years of planning and a real knack for treachery. 

Ah yes, and yet another betrayal. Viggo has gotten to the point where the only thing we can be absolutely sure of is that he is lying.

Huh, I was kinda wondering if Viggo was lying about the poison. After all, he did say that there was nothing to worry about and that Toothless would be absolutely fine. He certainly did use that deception masterfully. Nice to see his respect for Toothless. I imagine that has grown over the months and months of trying to go toe to toe with Hiccup and his magnificent dragon.

Whoa, and now Viggo’s watching Hiccup has changed his heart about dragons? Now that is good. This is the first thing in this season that has REALLY impressed me! After all this time, all these conflicts, and all of Hiccup refusals to be ruthless, Viggo has finally lost. But not from violence, and not from some stupid vendetta plot line. He has lost to Hiccup because he has become like Hiccup. He has finally seen what Hiccup sees, and it has shattered his pride and destroyed his greed. Hiccup has changed yet another mind… and he didn’t even know he was doing it. Seriously, this development for Viggo’s character is excellent. Now all of his knowledge about hunting dragons has led him to start to try and train them. He trains the Skrill because he has finally changed, finally lost a battle of ideals. Now he respects the dragons, now he understands that everything he knew about them was wrong.

Wow, if they just killed Viggo like that, I’m actually really impressed. I honestly was never crazy about his character… especially because he prompted the whole grudge/vengeance thing with Hiccup, but now I really, really like him. Who knew one episode could change my opinion so quickly!

I wonder if the Skrill lived through that conflict. I hope so…. wow, such a cool dragon. 

Hiccup Haddock the third. I like him being called by almost his full name XD Also nice to see Hiccup having a plan too. After all, he was working with Viggo, so he needed SOME sort of backup. 

Yep, pretty sure Viggo is dead. What a somber tone to end on. I like it! Man, that episode is my favorite of this season so far!

Episode 9:
As a general rule, Astrid is usually very sensible… especially in military matters. She’s actually probably a lot more level-headed than Hiccup. So, why is she so determined to bring an immature, untrained dragon into a combat situation… because he is lonely?!

Episode 10:

Gets too trippy with showing us what would have been. I mean, it’s interesting… but it’s just to weird for my tastes! Also, Hiccup sorta overreacts to the circumstances. It’s clear that if he and the others would not have left for the Edge, the current conflict would have gone unnoticed… and those who were evil would have gained more and more power until the wiped Berk from the map. It doesn’t take much thought to think that out… so I think they are making Hiccup a little more melodramatic than he actually needs to be. 

Episode 11: 

With Hiccup having to choose between Berk and Dragons… we are getting a bit of a teaser at what I assume is a theme in the third film! That's pretty cool.

And Alvin is back. Gotta love his voice actor.

The whole group constantly ganging up on Snotlout and telling him to shut up feels kinda low. I mean, sure, he’s an arrogant and annoying jerk most of the time. But all ganging up on him feels like getting down on his level. 

Episode 12:

Haha, ok, call me confused… but Fishlegs CAN’T be right about the whole titan wing Drameleon being the King of Dragons. I mean, the bones on the Island are CLEARLY Bewilderbeast remains. Plus Valka calls that species the king of all dragons. So, what is going on here? Is the lens not working, or is the Bewliderbeast located near the Drameleons? 

Ah… so Drameleon island is the key. Now that makes more sense XP

Ok, WRONG. Hiccup should have NO IDEA what the Bewilderbeast can do. He doesn’t understand the Alpha system yet. If he did, Drago wouldn’t have shocked him with that terrible, “Let me show you!”. Seriously, Hiccup clearly had no idea what was going on. Plus, it’s not just the species using their “minds” to control other dragons. If that was the case, then why can Toothless command dragons in The Serpent's Heir? Alright, sorry, got off on a tangent. But this is a serious break in both the timeline and the canon imo.

Wow, moving out of the Edge is kinda emotional. Reminds me of moving out of college… except Hiccup and the gang are getting to go home and not grad school.

Ha, WOW. Spitelout is coming along. That’s hilarious.

The Titan Wing Drameleon (and Zipplebacks, and all other Titan Wings we’ve seen in the show) are very accurate to the original Book of Dragons description of what a Titan Wing is. I’m personally not a fan of the idea that Toothless becomes a Titan Wing at the end of the second movie. I know the mobile app calls him one, but that’s just to mesh with their class promotion system. Man, ouch. That harpoon looked devastating. 

If the King of Dragons is on Berserker island… I don’t understand which king it is. Obviously, it is not Valka’s… but if it is Drago’s, is it still a baby or an egg. If so, how the HECK does it get so big in the span of less than a year??

Episode 13:
Here we are! The last episode of this season… and the last bit of story that happens between HTTYD1 and HTTYD2. It’s been a long and crazy ride… with a lot of good and a lot of… less than great! I must say I’m pretty excited!

Ahhhhh, cleeeeeeever. The Razorwhip babies can fly over the island because they are too young to obey the Alpha. Nice. Ha, I don’t think the writers of this show would like my theory on the Red Rage. They say that because the infant’s senses haven’t fully developed, it “offsets” the mind control. As opposed to what Hiccup and Valka say in the second film: baby dragons “listen” to no one. Big difference… at least to me.

Wow… those falling sparks. Feels like a bit much XD However, I appreciate Hiccup and Toothless starting the big final battle with just each other. Feels SOOOOOO much like every great HTTYD moment. 

Wow, the Bewilderbeast is fully grown and looks EPIC. He looks like Valka’s though, so he is either the same dragon or that is just what a healthy Bewilderbeast looks like. 

It’s nice to finally see Snotlout and Spitelout express appreciation for one another. I guess this finale is trying to tie up as many loose ends as possible!

And there’s an egg. You know what… I’m not sure what they are gonna try to do with this whole situation. All I know is that it looks like we are about to get a sword fight. So, I’m just gonna sit tight and watch this (Blah, I don’t think Hiccup is ever portrayed as being nearly a good enough hand to hand combatant for the climax to rest on his skill against two seasoned fighters). 

Well, with the distress call of the Alpha, we certainly are getting a massive showcase of the show’s many, many different species! Kinda neat! Also, this is why any dragon who is Alpha is basically the most dangerous thing on the planet. Just look at the power of that army!

Even Krogan’s loyal dragon joins with the hoard of the Alpha. Good, good… this is all looking right!

I’d hate to be Krogan facing down Toothless with just a sword. Sure, he tries some kind of clever nerve pinch, going for Toothless’s sweet spot, but you have to get SO CLOSE to do that, and he totally failed. He didn’t really even have a fighting chance. 

It’s a good thing Hiccup never saw the King of Dragons. That at least sorta makes this make sense with the second movie. Oh, and seeing Valka is great! Drago saying he will find his own… and doing so in less than a year still feels like it clashes with what we’ve been previously told about him and his Bewilderbeast. Bahaha, and I loved that tease, making us think Hiccup and Astrid were getting married! Now, I got worried for just a second there, but of course, they wouldn’t do that in a series! They’ll do that in a film. Astrid is also wearing red! Now Hiccup just needs to switch back to green and get himself a helmet!

So, yeah, overall the finale was pretty satisfying.

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