Ultraman Season 3 Review – The Final Chapter

It’s been a long wait to see the conclusion to this series… imagine that Ultraman started already back in 2019 at Netflix and yes there was COVID, which pushed release for the second season probably. This is one of the downfalls of the Netflix binge model because you consume it usually in under one week and you are forgetting things more easily than in the weekly format that Japanese anime is accustomed to, I remember watching the second season and I barely remembered what happened on the first one (that’s a problematic issue). Top of this there is no recap here once again of what happened in season 2 which sucks…

But let’s dive in and break down a bit of Season 3 and how I feel about it, also I think I need to emphasize here that I’m not a person who has digested any other material from this franchise, so my experience may differ from the old-school fan and I don’t have the same level of nostalgia attached.

(Minor spoilers are included in this review)

The Final Act Begins

So the final season has in total of 12 episodes versus the last season which was 6 for your information. The season starts off with our protagonist having a dream/vision of sorts followed by a new Opening intro (Which btw is actually quite decent for Netflix standards that usually has bad openings for their originals) I really dig the MIYAVI guitar sounds on this track, he’s one of the underrated guitarists in the world and I’ve been following for more than a decade. When it comes to ED that’s not bad either, but not something I would listen to outside of this anime actually.

The season doesn’t juggle around and almost immediately jumps into action in the first episode followed by a lot of high-quality fights early on. I’m not sure but it does feel to me that the animation quality is a lot higher than it was in previous seasons, I can’t honestly remember since it’s been so long since I saw the previous two seasons.

It does feel like a lot of things are taking place and the stakes are higher than ever, there is just this fast dynamic to this season I feel. Not to say there was slow pacing in earlier seasons, I just felt that this time around there was more of this.

Setbacks & Character Development

A heavy subplot that takes focus is to do with general “optics” among the public of Japan and how they view Ultraman, the villains essentially are building FUD around Ultraman as a bad guy and shit like that. It’s a way to keep some of these side characters relevant to the story too as bystanders who aren’t taking place in the battle, especially Shinjiros potential love interest who goes into TV for a debate and gets dumbstered essentially LIVE for speaking for the integrity of Ultraman (Not just once, but twice).

Shinjiro has a couple of major points that happen to him that make him go through a character development arc of sorts, whilst also getting a form of powerup at the beginning of the season too. Others also do have screentime as well, but I wouldn’t go far as to say these people are getting major shifts in their development outside of Rena.

Also, I do feel like the Villain (Mephisto) was pulled out of nowhere without no proper buildup on previous seasons, which does make sense a bit later on. Then again it’s a long season so it’s not like he’s jumping in on the final minute of the final episode here either.

Last Thoughts on Ultraman

I feel like I was somewhat disconnected from the major world due to these massive gaps between season airdates. Someone could say “Well why didn’t you go rewatch the earlier seasons for a recap?” that’s not supposed to be the job of the viewer ultimately, this is why most weekly TV shows are showing recaps of what happened on previous episodes to keep people on the loop.

Prime examples are Blue Exorcist and D.Gray-man who had a lot larger gaps between their comebacks and the hype had totally died off and most new people weren’t familiar with these IPs no longer… I’m not saying this is exactly the very same situation but it’s similar in the sense that you suppose to cast the iron while it’s hot. You had 31 episodes in total which could’ve been split much more logically and on a shorter timespan – this is purely Netflix’s fault and cannot be entirely put on the COVID situation.

The last critique that I may have is the length of this season, it didn’t need to be long and stretched out. The whole Doppelganger meme was getting quite old after hitting episode 7 already and I wanted to jump into the proper climax for the season instead of going into these random skirmishes that didn’t end up with anyone dead anyways.

That being said it was action-packed, had good OST, plot developments, and twists that were great, and an ending that was satisfying, even though lmao decided to go full-on genocide mode on aliens kek.