Post by subtleagent on Mar 20, 2021 0:45:45 GMT -5
Ryo is a pretty bipolar competitor and I'm not sure if he's competed long enough to have many best runs. The only ones I would call his legit best are:
SASUKE 27: Seeing him finally break through and go to the final after that was pretty satisfying.
SASUKE 30: Seeing him tear up Stage 3 again was pretty damn amazing.
SASUKE 36: He had a pretty strong comeback despite being out of shape and his one-handed save on the Ultra Crazy Cliffhanger was definitely epic.
And honestly I would call his SASUKE 36 run much more impressive than 27 or 30 because those two were both on somewhat nerfed courses. 36 really showed the potential that he has, but he's held back mentally so it dooms him.
That being said, I'm going to list the ones I feel are his worst runs. Some of them rival Yamada in terms of WTF?:
SASUKE 28: This run showed just how ridiculously lenient Stage 2's time limit was. He wasted at least a good 50 seconds (applying spray on the Spider Walk, getting slowed by the Backstream and struggling on the Passing Wall) and he still made it to the second Passing Wall. His clear would've been a practical free pass.
SASUKE 32: His technique on the Tackle was a spectacular failure.
SASUKE 34: His miss on the Double Pendulum was pretty bad, though his dive was pretty spectacular (ala Nagano in 25).
SASUKE 37: He pretty much threw away another potential clear through rushing the Fish Bone when he could have taken his time.
SASUKE 38: Watching him struggle that badly on the Salmon Ladder was pretty bleh (for god's sake, he did worse than Snow Man).
Agreed, though I'd add 31 to the list of worst. Not because it was a terrible run or anything (after all he didn't anticipate the addition of the Tackle and it did also take out Yuuji and even Nagano) but because it was a precursor and I'd argue 'trigger' for what was to come. Until then, he was the superfan kid who had loved Sasuke since he was a kid and trained for the fun of competing, and this was further accentuated when he started doing well (after all, you naturally get more invested in something when you start to reap the rewards of your hard work). Especially in Sasuke 30 you could see how much fun he was having on the course which I think had a huge part in his success that tournament. Even when he failed so close to Kanzenseiha he still smiled and took it on the nose.
Then 31 comes along and everything changes; he'd been selected for international competitions to represent his entire nation's pride, and he was given the #100 based on his past performance. Suddenly, his whole perspective shifted from something he loved partaking in to a huge pressure where he felt he had to deliver. As I said I think the Stage 1 fail was largely due to lack of specific training more than anything else. But the combination of being put on the highest pedestal yet giving his worst performance in years, as well as this fail leading to him being robbed of Kanzenseiha by Yusuke (when Yusuke hit the buzzer, Ryo just stood there folding his arms looking pretty pissed off), definitely mentally scarred him.
A common defense mechanism of performing poorly is just to shut yourself off from the sport, tell yourself you're not interested anymore, and just 'move on'. I think this is what Ryo did as after 31 you could tell from his demeanor that he was only competing because he got invited back and became much more stoic and cold, far less invested in doing well. He also started to get out of shape which indicated that he trained a mere fraction of the time he used to. Even though he cleared in Sasuke 38, for me that performance was conclusive that he was out of the running for another Final Stage attempt; to see him degrade from one of only six two-time finalists and someone who's never failed any Cliffhanger, to failing a simple Salmon Ladder, was just depressing.
I will say I disagree with Sasuke 28 being one of his worst performances though; he was still only one of five to clear Stage 1 (though this could be attributed to the abysmal competitor list), and I think he was really thrown off by the sudden incorporation of a swimming obstacle as he admitted he was scared of water. A part of me felt like he was using as much of the time limit as possible to almost psyche himself up for the Backstream; he almost looked like he was about to drown despite the jets being basically non-existent that tournament.