Season 1, Episode 5: Draciel of Approval
Max faces up against Kai and discovers a great power that's been hidden in plain sight for years.
This is another very battle-heavy episode where we don’t see a lot of the outside world for most of it. The focus is very much on Max, and is a chance for the audience to really see what he’s capable of when put to the test. We’ve seen him rescue a puppy, and have a friendly battle with Tyson, but how will he cope in a no-mercy battle against Kai? As you may have guessed from the episode title, this episode also marks the first appearance of Draciel.
While I personally do enjoy a little more variety in my episodes rather than it being solely battle-focussed, I do love the battles between Max and Kai. Max before getting Draciel is forced to go up against Kai, who’s already armed with a bit beast. What I love about this situation is we get to see one of Max’s biggest strengths come to light: his ability to think on his feet.
Using the power of physics (I’m sure Kenny was very proud) Max catches Kai off guard in the second battle. Being a massive nerd, I loved this sequence! I also thought the type of dish used, where the blader is basically holding a fortress on a second miniature dish, was a great tension builder.
We’re also given a few brief moments of Ray in this episode – it’s all coming together!
What I Liked
I loved the battle strategies used by Max in this episode. The use of a reverse launch to counter Kai’s attack made for some great viewing.
My Favourite Quote
Max: “Ahh! I think a fish just bit me!”
- This episode contains not one but two scenes that were cut out of the Japanese dub: the first is when Max performs his reverse launch – if you look closely you can see that his ripcord has no handle in this scene. The Japanese version shows him chewing it off and spitting it out. I guess they didn’t want kids to copy it and choke. The second scene cut out is towards the end where Tyson, Max and Kenny spot Ray from the hot springs, where there's some brief nudity as the characters are peering over the cliff.
- In the Japanese dub, the pendant containing the Draciel bit comes from Max’s mother, not his grandma.