Getting to see Food Wars every couple of seasons is already a classic at this point, especially with the recent announcement of a fourth season coming out in Spring 2018. So how does Food Wars! The Third Plate compare to the previous releases?
WARNING: This review contains spoilers for Food Wars seasons 1-3!
At this point in the series, those who are still watching Food Wars do so because they genuinely enjoy the show, and they already know what kind of content they’ll be getting from it. There are foodgasms, there are comedy and lots of badass moments… and that’s about it.
Let’s be real – Food Wars can be really entertaining, but it gets more and more repetitive as it goes on. Soma is a very likable main character, but he’s also a very obvious Gary Stu. No matter what kind of situation he gets himself into, he’ll always come out of it victorious (the only exception for that being him losing the Autumn Election, but it’s not like that has changed much).
This is probably Food Wars biggest weakness: it’s the same scenario over and over again, and yet the rest of the characters (mostly female) pretend to be both surprised and amazed by everything Soma does. You’d think at this point they would have already gotten used to it (heck, they could even use it for comedy relief!).
This third season still brings many new elements that make it worth watching. The introduction of the final members of the Elite Ten includes some of the most charismatic characters so far, like Eishi Tsukasa and Terunori Kuga.
In fact, the Stagiaire Arc feels very refreshing after the big Autumn Election, as it brings back one of the most promising elements from the first season: restaurants, the business side of cooking. What makes a stall more appealing than the other? How does the placement affect one’s business? What is it that the clients need? That’s where Soma has the advantage, and that’s where Food Wars can show some maturity.
Fortunately, the restaurant theme seems to carry on to the second half of the season (as well as next season’s, judging by the cliffhanger). It does so at the hands of Azami Nakiri, Erina’s father and the man who’s quickly become the major villain of the series. And it makes sense: the Nakiri family have been hyped up as a very well-renowned family for both the Academy and the culinary world.
What we did not know, however, is that Mr. Nakiri is a horrible person, and an even more atrocious father, which explains most of Erina’s tsundere attitude and trust issues. This allows for some well-overdue backstory and development for her character, as she starts to integrate herself into Soma’s circle of friends.
By the end of the season, Soma finds himself in a place that’s not unfamiliar for him: other people threatening to end small restaurants. The mention of his father, Joichiro Yukihira, is not only a nice call-back to the first season but also a nice way to hype things up for the fourth season.