Assassination Classroom focuses on the students in class 3-E at Kunugigaoka Junior High School, who are being taught by a powerful alien octopus creature who destroyed 70% of the moon. It’s the mission of these students to assassinate their teacher before graduation, and they are offered a reward of 10 billion yen from the Japanese government. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as it sounds, since the alien can move at Mach 20. Also, as part of the agreement, the teacher is unable to harm the students in any way. At the end of the first episode, the teacher is given the name of “Koro Sensei” by his students.
Episode Three opens with the students in class 3-E having their first “gym class” with their new P.E. teacher, Mr. Karasuma. But instead of traditional P.E. activities, he’s teaching the students the basics of assassination. As Karasuma puts it, if the students can’t hit him with their knife, then there’s no way they’ll be able to get Koro Sensei, who can move at Mach 20. In some ways, it’s a little amusing to think about the fact that Karasuma is there to teach the kids how to assassinate Koro Sensei, yet their target is able to watch them practice and see what they’re learning.
However, the majority of the episode focuses on Karma Akabane, a new student who is transferred into class 3-E after getting out of suspension. He makes a big impression when he arrives to school late and becomes the first student in the class to successfully cause an injury to Koro Sensei; but Koro Sensei is able to easily regenerate the tentacle that was damaged. We learn through Nagisa that Karma has a bit of a violent streak and has knowledge about weapons. With Karma’s introduction, he comes across to the audience as a character who’s simply a violent delinquent, but revelations made throughout the episode show that he’s more than a one-dimensional character.
The episode sees Karma making several attempts at trying to assassinate Koro Sensei, but the teacher is able to outwit him every time. Not only that, Koro Sensei is also able to do things such as giving Karma nail art, or putting an apron on him during Home Economics, or making octopus balls for Karma to eat as he’s dodging one of his attacks. Koro Sensei’s responses to these incidents help to add some much needed humor to an episode that has such a strong focus on assassination attempts.
Near the end of the episode, we get to learn exactly why Karma ended up being placed in class 3-E after his suspension was over. Karma did commit a violent act, but he had done it in order to protect a member of class 3-E who was being bullied. The teacher who punished him had said he’d always have Karma’s back and would look past his offenses prior to that due to his good grades, so Karma feels betrayed. Unfortunately, Karma chose to beat up one of the smartest kids in the school in order to protect a student in the class that’s shunned, which angered this particular teacher. Karma had an admirable reason for doing what he did, but now he feels betrayed by teachers and authority figures after this incident. But through that, the audience learns that Karma isn’t necessarily a bad kid, but he does have some issues to deal with. I didn’t expect to like Karma much when I first met him, but by the end of this story, I really came to like him. I’ve already seen Karma being a well-liked character amongst the series’ fanbase on the Internet, and I can see why he’s liked so much. Between his personality and his looks, there’s a lot there for fans to like about him. Karma really does add something to the series that had been missing in the previous two episodes.
This episode was rather faithful to the original manga source material, and only a couple of minor changes were made. They were so minor that I didn’t realize that they’d been made until I re-read the two chapters in the manga that were adapted for Episode Three. These changes did nothing to alter the story at all; the changes were just minor differences in details in scenes between the manga and anime, and the translators for both mediums chose some different ways to express the same ideas in the dialogue.
Overall, Episode Three was very enjoyable to watch. Since I’ve read the first two volumes of the Assassination Classroom manga at this point and know what’s coming, I’m looking forward to seeing how the anime adapts and animates these upcoming events.
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