Episode 25: Shining Friendship (Duel of Tears! Friendship)
Yugi's friends are gathered around him, saying his name. He's still devastated by his loss to Kaiba, on his hands and knees before the gate of the castle, and doesn't respond to anyone. Tristan and Joey say they've never seen him like this—he's totally out of it. Bakura points out that Yugi has just lost his chance to enter the castle and save his grandfather. Téa sadly asks Yugi to let them help him. (The Japanese gang don't say anything, except that Anzu says Yugi's name.)
Yugi is lost in his own thoughts, wondering what's happening to him. One minute he was battling against Kaiba, he thinks, and the next minute he was battling against himself. Suddenly, there was this other presence inside him, willing to do anything to win the duel, and it took everything he had to hold him back. He let Kaiba win—he had no choice. The other presence might have seriously hurt Kaiba if he hadn't regained control. And now, he's afraid of what happens next time. What if he can't control it? He can't take that chance. He can never duel again. (Japanese Yugi thinks that there was no other choice. If he hadn't stopped the duel, Kaiba.... But to do it, he had to stand in the way of his other self. But without him, he can't do anything.)
Téa tells Joey that they have to do something. Joey says he's going in, and walks over to Yugi, telling him it's okay. He kneels down beside Yugi and holds out his own Star Chips to him, saying he owes Yugi for helping him to get this far. (Japanese Jounouchi says it was Yugi's Star Chip that allowed him to enter the tournament in the first place, so they're all really Yugi's Star Chips anyway.) Bakura asks Joey, what about his sister? Joey agrees that Serenity needs his help, but Yugi's Grandpa is in danger right now. They've got to get Yugi into the castle. (Japanese Bakura says Jounouchi's name, and Jounouchi goes on talking to Yugi.) Téa pleads with Yugi, and Joey continues to urge Yugi to take the Star Chips. But Yugi doesn't even look at them. Frustrated, Joey picks Yugi up by his shirt, telling him to snap out of it (Japanese Jounouchi asks Yugi if he doesn't care about his grandfather), but Yugi hangs limp in Joey's hands, staring off into space.
Just then, Mai shows up, saying that if this is how Joey treats his friends, she can't wait to see how he treats his enemies. Joey sets Yugi down, while Mai asks, if he's got enough Star Chips to get into the castle, why's he hanging around out here? Joey tells her it's Yugi—he lost his Chips to Kaiba, and now he's lost his will to go on. Mai says it's lucky for him she came by. (Japanese Mai asks what's going on, then notices that Jounouchi has ten Star Chips. Jounouchi says now they'll be reduced by half. Mai is surprised to see that Yugi has only five Star Chips.)
Kaiba stands in the castle's entrance hall, thinking that he's played Pegasus' game and won. Now he's coming for Pegasus. He starts to walk down the hall.
Pegasus is watching on the screen in his dining hall. He raises a toast to Kaiba, for his stunning upset victory over Yugi. But if Kaiba thinks he can just waltz in and rescue his little brother, he underestimates Pegasus' abilities. Sipping his wine, er, fruit juice, Pegasus says Kaiba will see soon enough. (Japanese Pegasus says it's beautiful—the flame of Kaiba's anger is clearly visible. It's a beautiful sight, Kaiba charging towards him full of hatred.)
Mai tells Yugi to listen up. He got beat, but that doesn't mean it's the end of the world. When she got beat, she thought it was all over, but then Yugi stepped in and saved her Star Chips—so now she's returning the favor. She holds out a handful of Star Chips to Yugi. (Japanese Mai exclaims that Yugi lost! He won't make it into the castle? She won't allow such a thing. Then she holds out the Star Chips to Yugi.)
Joey and the others can't believe it—without her Star Chips, Mai can't win the prize money. But Mai holds up her Dueling Glove, still full of Star Chips, saying that she's being kind, not stupid. Bakura sees that she already has ten Star Chips of her own. She holds out the extra Star Chips to Yugi again, reminding him that she owes him. (Japanese Mai says she's returning what she owes Yugi, on the condition that he must duel her when they get into the castle.) Joey urges Yugi to take them, so that they can all head up to the castle together.
But Yugi remains lost in his own little world, not even acknowledging Mai's presence. Mai gets angry and says, fine, she'll just keep them, and tells Yugi to grow up. Téa says Mai doesn't understand (Japanese Anzu starts to say that it's her fault Yugi lost), but Mai thinks it's pretty simple—Yugi lost one lousy duel, and now he's too chicken to play again. Then she challenges Yugi to duel her for them, but he's still out of it.
So Téa steps in and takes Mai's challenge. She says she'll duel Mai right here and now for Yugi. (Cut from the US version is this bit where Honda asks Anzu how she thinks she can beat Mai. Anzu replies that she has a responsibility to ensure that Yugi can enter the castle, and again challenges Mai. Mai asks if Anzu really thinks she can beat her, and Anzu pulls her deck out of her pocket.)
Mai tells Téa to be serious—an amateur like Téa wouldn't stand a chance against her. It's sweet that Téa wants to stand up for Yugi, but sweet doesn't win duels. (Japanese Mai thinks that she doesn't mind, as long as Yugi gets the Star Chips. She says she'll accept the duel on one condition, that if Téa loses, she'll never talk about friendship again.) Téa still wants to duel. Joey asks Tristan what he thinks, and Tristan says Yugi's in good hands. Joey hopes he's right, because everything's riding on this one match.
They adjourn to a dueling arena at the foot of the hill. Téa says she's ready. Yugi's still space-boy, but Tristan suggests that maybe watching a little duel action will snap him out of it.
Téa starts by playing Petit Angel (600 ATK) in attack mode. Joey and Tristan groan and tell Téa that's not funny! Mai responds by playing Harpie Lady (1300 ATK) in attack mode, and placing one card face down. Then she attacks, and Harpie Lady promptly destroys the little chew-toy. Mai tells Téa that if she's trembling with fear already, maybe she should quit right here. Téa's down to 1300 life points.
Téa says she's in it to win, and plays Fairy's Gift (1400 ATK). (It's kind of hard to see in the screencap, because she's all shiny, but Fairy's Gift is naked in the Japanese. She gets a drawn-on dress to wear in the US version.)
Mai is disdainful of Téa's cutesy monsters (even though, at 1400 ATK, Fairy's Gift is more powerful than Harpie Lady, at 1300). Téa also sets a trap card, Waboku, face down, even though she doesn't remember what it does. (Japanese Anzu reads the text on the card and thinks it might come in handy, so she sets it face down.) Joey says it was a rocky start, but he thinks Téa's back on track. Bakura hopes Joey's right.
Téa attacks Harpie Lady with Fairy's Gift. Her monster is stronger than Mai's, but her attack doesn't seem to be working. Mai has activated her face-down magic card, Rose Whip, which powers up Harpie Lady by 300 points. (Harpie Lady's rather scanty costume also gets covered up in the US.)
Fairy's Gift is destroyed, and Téa's down to 1100 life points. Bakura says it was a clever move—Mai tricked Téa into attacking, but had a magic card waiting to power up her Harpie Lady. Another mistake like that, and it's all over for Téa!
Mai says that if Téa really had any idea of what she was up against, she'd quit. She tells Téa to give up and go back to cheerleading, but Téa says she's not going to let Yugi down. Mai doesn't want to hear another of Téa's friendship raps. She says she's heard them all before, and from the look on Yugi's face, he has, too. Téa tells Mai to take that back, but Mai just says that Téa is out of her league. (Japanese Mai says Anzu thinks too highly of herself if she thinks she made Yugi lose the duel with Kaiba. Each duelist is alone on the field and can't use anyone else's power. If Yugi lost, it was because he wasn't good enough.)
It's Mai's turn, and she sets Harpie's Feather Duster face down. Téa hates it when Mai sets cards face down! Téa draws Shining Friendship (Friendship), which reminds her of the bond between herself and friends. She wishes the card were as strong as their real friendship—then it would be able to beat anything. It would have Joey's courage, Tristan's spirit, and Yugi's heart. (Japanese Anzu thinks that she'll stake everything on this card.) Tristan and Joey urge her on, and she asks Yugi if he's with her, too. He glances up, but still doesn't say anything.
Téa plays Shining Friendship in attack mode. Mai sends her powered-up Harpie Lady to attack, but Téa activates her trap card, Waboku, which reduces Harpie Lady's attack to zero and saves Shining Friendship. (Actually, it doesn't reduce the attacking creature's attack points—if it did, Harpie Lady would be destroyed. What it does is reduce battle damage to zero.)
Joey says he taught Téa that move—to which Tristan replies, yeah, if by teaching, he means getting schooled every time she beat him with it. (It's nice that somebody remembers that Téa is actually a pretty good Duel Monsters player, who was regularly whipping Joey's butt in the early episodes.)
Téa gives Mai one of her friendship speeches, and says she might be scared, but with all of her friends backing her up, she will win. Her fear won't keep her from dueling, or from helping Yugi. (Japanese Anzu says she'll protect and defend the Friendship card to the end. She'll stake their friendship on this card. No matter what Mai says, she believes in their partnership, and she believes in Yugi. They've made it this far together, and to go on without one of them absolutely won't do.) Joey asks Yugi if any of this getting through to him—Téa's putting herself on the line for him. Bakura adds that even though she's frightened, Téa still battles on. Yugi seems to be waking up a little, but still doesn't speak.
Mai says it's so inspiring, she almost feels the need to throw up. Téa tells her to can it. (Japanese Mai tells Téa to wait until she's won before saying anything so grand. Anzu says she won't lose.)
Téa sets Magician of Faith (400 DEF) face down in defense mode, and powers up Shining Friendship with the Silver Bow and Arrow, raising its attack to 1600, matching Harpie Lady's. But Mai plays Cyber Shield, raising Harpie Lady's attack by another 500 points, to 2100. (The spikes on Cyber Shield's breastplate have been removed in the US version.)
Then Mai uses De-Spell to destroy the Silver Bow and Arrow, taking Shining Friendship back to its original 1300 points. Joey and Tristan urge Téa to hang on, and even Yugi lets out a little gasp, as Mai attacks Téa's face-down card. Magician of Faith is destroyed.
But attacking Magician of Faith flips it up, activating its effect, which Mai has to remind Téa about—Téa gets to take one magic card back from the graveyard. Mai wonders how Téa can hope to win if she doesn't know the rules, and tells Téa that all she's doing is delaying the inevitable. Téa insists she won't give up, but Mai tells her that what she's doing is pointless. Yugi has already given up on himself, and Téa can't go on fighting for him. He has to fight for himself. (Japanese Mai says that friends might help relieve part of the pain of living, but in the end, you can only rely on your own determination.)
Yugi starts to think that maybe Mai's right. Maybe he has to fight harder—but what can he do when the thing he's fighting is a magical spirit that can take control of him? Mai says Yugi's checked out. He doesn't care about this match, and he doesn't care about Téa. Nothing's worth the humiliation Téa's going through. (Japanese Yugi wakes up a little and thinks about determination. Mai says that a duelist who doesn't have this courage will only betray his friends' expectations by losing.)
Téa tells Mai she's wrong—her friends are worth it. Tears drip from her eyes as she refuses to give up—not on the match, and not on Yugi. (Japanese Anzu says that Yugi must make his own decision, but she still wants to protect and encourage him until that time. No matter what, she will enable him to enter the castle.) Finally, Yugi reacts, saying Téa's name. Téa says she may be crying, but she's never felt stronger. She tells Mai to get her Star Chips ready, because she's about to beat her.
Téa draws Elf's Light, which will give her Shining Friendship another boost. (It's hard to tell, but I think the little naked elf has also been clothed in the US version.)
She also has the Silver Bow and Arrow that she brought back from the graveyard, and a De-Spell card she can use to get rid of Mai's Cyber Shield. She just hopes it will be enough.
First, Téa plays Silver Bow and Arrow, powering up Shining Friendship by 300 points. Then she adds Elf's Light to power up her Shining Friendship even further, to 2000 attack points. (And turning Shining Friendship into another naked fairy, given a dress to wear in the US.)
Mai says that's still not enough, and sends her powered-up Harpie Lady to attack. (Why don't these people ever wait for the other player to finish a turn before they attack?) But Téa's not finished yet—she plays De-Spell, and destroys Harpie Lady's Cyber Shield, bringing her attack power down to 1600.
Téa attacks, and everyone gasps. Mai reaches for her face-down card, Harpie's Feather Duster, but doesn't play it. Harpie Lady is destroyed. Everyone cheers, Tristan telling Joey that Téa's doing better against Mai than he did! Mai's life points are down to 1600.
Mai scoops up her face-down card, and Yugi wonders if it's Harpie's Feather Duster. But then Mai surrenders, saying she doesn't have the cards to win. Téa can't believe Mai's giving up, but Mai says Harpie Lady was her best monster, and since Téa beat it, there's no point in going on.
Téa bounces happily, and Joey tells her she really came through for Yugi. Beside the arena, Mai gives the Star Chips to Téa, saying she didn't need them anyway. Mai starts to walk away, when Yugi tells her to wait. He starts to ask about her covered card, but Mai claims it was just a throwaway. "Some cards just aren't worth playing," she says. (Japanese Mai asks Yugi what he's talking about, and says she didn't lose for him.) Then she gives Yugi thumbs up and heads off to the castle.
Téa gives Yugi the Star Chips, and he thanks her, saying she's given him the courage to face his fears and duel again. (Japanese Yugi thinks that to fight with one's own power and strength—that's what dueling is about. He says to his other self, that's right, isn't it?) Joey and Tristan welcome Yugi back, saying he really had them worried. Part way up the steps, Mai calls out to them. "Last one up the steps is a rotten egg!" Laughing, they hurry after her toward the castle.