This review contains spoilers, click expand to view.
As a huge fan of the first four seasons I was thrilled they finally came back to finish the saga, and the first few episodes didn't disappoint. But then it slowly went downhill, culminating in one of the most disappointing endings to a series I've ever seen. Spoilers follow:
I didn't mind the Ashi romance as much as others, but Jack's instant reversion back to his former self made the whole 50 year span seem like a waste of time. Then he gets to the Guardian (met back in episode 32), only to find out he's been killed and the time portal destroyed. What?!? If you want to do that, don't foreshadow in that episode that Jack will come back and use the time passage once he's ready! I, like many others, was waiting for the hero's journey payoff that never came. At the very least we could SEE Aku destroy the Guardian to give a sense of dread, but no....
Then we have Aku taking control of Ashi, and rather than trying to disarm her, incapacitate her, kill Aku to free her, or even escape to come up with a plan, the "There must be a way" Samurai Jack... gives up............
And in the final episode Aku televises how he is about to kill Samurai Jack, and somehow everyone Jack saved 50 years ago are still alive, they know exactly where Aku's castle is even though he was constantly moving it in earlier seasons so Jack couldn't find him, AND they are ALL within a 5 minutes' walk, flight, or good jump away from said castle and get there immediately.
As if that wasn't hard enough to believe, Jack is freed but instead of Aku attacking the one person he's feared these past 50 years he goes after the insects that LITERALLY cannot harm him. Yes....Aku could try to reach the sword before Jack can, or simply kill Jack, but we're expected to believe that's secondary to mowing down weaklings who pose no threat whatsoever.
But the ridiculousness still isn't over. After a WAY too long gag from the dead Scotsman (seriously why was he even in this season if he couldn't do anything worthwhile?) we have Ashi deus ex machina her way free from Aku's grasp because Jack says “I love you” and she now has all of Aku's powers magically and time travels them exactly to both the location and moment they need to go first try with no prior knowledge to this.
And because the finale is so rushed we have no epic showdown, no last battle for these two opposing forces of good and evil that the entire series has built to. Nope. Even the kids' made up story version of the climactic finish at season one's end would have been better!!
Then we have the moment where Ashi and Jack are about to get married but Ashi suddenly realizes she can't exist because Aku never created her.... so she disappears. This is equivalent to looney tunes characters running perfectly fine across the sky and not falling until they notice they aren't standing on anything. Samurai Jack is much too serious a show for this nonsense--if she can't exist in this timeline, she needs to disappear as soon as Aku is vanquished. It could even be great storytelling for Jack to have realized this would happen but chooses to kill Aku anyway and save trillions over his own happiness. But no, we got the garbage.
Let's not forget the time discrepancies with Jack's parents. Seriously watch the very first episode again. Watch how OLD they are and yet, when Jack comes back to this same exact time, they have regressed to their age when he was a child. Continuity is dropped completely.
Again, the first three episodes were great (and the only reason my score isn't a 0), but everything else was a dumpster fire and I would have rather had no ending at all than what we got.… Expand