Actual written out thoughts on Sk8′s final two episodes...
Note: this gets very long, sorry, and also it sounds really negative? Don’t get me wrong, I loved the show a lot, it just happened that I wish the ending was different haha!
(Shout out to @airisu7425 for telling me to pick this up! Thank you!!)
I also won’t get into the half-relationship that they don’t really commit to because I fully expected that.
Adam is trash
Reki should have beaten Adam or raced against Cap-Guy instead
Ending episode should have been Reki vs. Langa 100%
Shadow deserved a girlfriend
Episode 11: Reki vs. Adam
To start off, goddamn it I love Reki's whole character and journey in this show, it was perfect. After what he'd been through, him being subbed in for Shadow made total sense, and seemed like a fantastic way to get him back into skateboarding and making peace with his own inner demons and all that. I even really liked how Adam goaded Reki into it with that card - it felt very on brand for everyone, and worked well for the moment. The idea of Reki going up against Adam was something I was hyped for, because it was the perfect way to round off his character development. Adam represents everything that ruined skateboarding for Reki, and I was so desperate to see him beat his ass.
You can probably guess where this is going if you've seen the show...
I already knew from gifs online that the final race wasn't between Reki and Langa (which it should have been, but more on that later), so I knew somehow Reki would lose but... I thought it would be done better than this.
I'm trying very hard not to just rant about how Adam is a monster, and instead talk about the race, but there is no way he should have won like that. Winning against Adam would have been the perfect end to Reki's character arc, and honestly, for Adam too: it's be an amazing comeback for Reki, and Adam would have lost to this kid who was no natural talent like Langa, but just fucking loved skateboarding. (Not to mention how Reki beating Adam for Langa's 'affection' or whatever Adam thinks is happening, would have been a beautiful slap in that bastard's face).
I get that Reki losing and still being happy about it is very him, and I'm not complaining about that: that is equally a great end to his arc, but it should not have happened against Adam.
You cannot tell me that anyone, even Reki, could have enjoyed a race in which they were beaten, abused, and mentally tormented. Like... that's just not satisfying for anyone, surely?
So, I see two possible ways this episode should have gone:
1. Reki vs. Cap-Guy
(I don't know Cap-Guy's name still, he just stared at Adam longingly the whole time, so he's Cap-Guy now).
These two racing instead would have been amazing, and just as good an end to their story. Cap-Guy has already been proven to be an amazing skateboarder, as well as one that plays by the rules unlike Adam. Having Reki go against someone like him, who will give him a fair but challenging and serious race would have been perfect! That way if Reki lost, he could still have enjoyed it, and Cap-Guy could still have that moment of seeing Reki happy despite losing.
2. If they had to stick with Reki vs. Adam...
Well, for starters, Reki should have won, but if they were really against that, then he should have really lost.
By that I mean, it should have happened just as it did, but Reki's skateboard should have broken just before he got to the finish line, and he should have crashed and fallen before he crossed - maybe also injure himself again in true Reki fashion. Then Adam, in a fit of fury that this kid made him fall off, should have won the race afterwards, and Reki should have remained lying on the floor, unable to finish.
Then we could have had this amazing moment where Langa and then the others cheer Reki on and convince him to crawl or limp over the finish line - because they also know at this point that winning isn't the point, it's all about Reki getting his love back for skateboarding and finishing what he started. We also could have had a great moment of the crowd losing respect for Adam and all cheering for Reki to cross and Adam being mad that no one cares he won.
Episode 12: Langa vs. Adam
At this point in the series, I feel like Adam should have lost all respect from the crowd. You know, considering that he attacks, molests, and abuses everyone he goes against? I know humans are shitty, but the crowds should have started to lose respect for him after the Cherry incident, and then completely after the race with Reki. The fact that anyone is amazed or interested in seeing Adam do anything but lose and crash and burn is really annoying to me.
So... puling Adam out of the zone... that whole thing.
Just yikes. No.
Bad guys don't need these magical redemption moments where they're completely forgiven with no effort from themselves just because the protagonists realised they'd forgotten how to 'have fun'. Like, no Langa, this guy was literally planning on you to possibly die in this race and he's tried to kill or at least seriously injure most of your friends. You don't need to make him have fun with you, you need to call the police.
Anyway, now I've seen the whole episode, I can say for certain:
The final battle should have been Langa vs. Reki
Yes, it would have missed the big 'dramaaaa' of the fight with Adam and the whole zone thing, but it would have been so satisfying. Langa can still have his moments of realisation, and there could have been loads more sweet moments of just enjoying skating again, and you could even still have the hug at the end where Langa hugs Reki without knowing which of them won.
Anyway... last minute ending sequence thoughts:
Why is Adam just... still here? Like... why is he not in jail? I don't care that it was him twisting the police or whatever, get him the fuck out of here, he sent numerous people to hospital.
Reki grabbing Langa to protect him from Adam was adorable, but it could have been changed to him protecting him from Shadow doing some stupid move or something.
Speaking of... JUSTICE FOR SHADOW. HE SHOULD HAVE BEEN ALLOWED TO GIVE THE FLOWERS TO THE GIRL HOW DARE YOU NOT LET HIM HAVE THAT MOMENT.
Um... what did Reki say to Langa in the car? Like, did I miss something or was that never explained? It seemed pretty important?
Also, we all agree that Langa's happiness is Reki, right? Right?
And there.. in the final few seconds is the race that should have been the last episode.
Overall: this sounds really negative in the post, but I really enjoyed this series! So glad I listened to advice and picked it up!!!