Here's Why Food Wars Should End the Anime Before its Final Arc

Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma's fourth season is currently underway, and it's picking up right [...]

Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma's fourth season is currently underway, and it's picking up right where the third season came to an end. Closing out the climax of the Central arc, there's been a question of where the season would end considering the odd cutoffs for the coming arcs. If the fourth season releases with the initially reported episode listing of 25 episodes, then at its current pace the anime will once again end on a major cliffhanger without much left to explore with a potential Season 5. But a new reported episode count of 15 sounds a lot more promising.

It might sound odd for a fan of the series to ask for even less of it, but in this case it would be for the best. While the final arc of Yuto Tsukuda and Shun Saeki Food Wars: Shokugeki no Soma continues the story and character journeys beyond the Promotion Exams really should have ended. The perfect end is actually quite near. Here's why.

The Series Ends...Then Keeps Going

When the Central arc wraps, Soma Yukihira ends the natural character arc he was on. Throughout the entire series, he had a burning desire to cook but it was spurred even further by the knowledge of cooking. It wasn't about whether or not he defeated a final enemy, his journey was the journey, so to speak. His flat character arc presented a platform for the characters around him to change, and this is all encompassed with the finale of the Central arc leading to a new Elite Ten consisting of his friends and allies.

Soma accomplishes his goal of being number one, Erina is named the new Dean, and the young chefs move into their second year brighter and stronger than ever. But then, the series immediately stretches this out and sets development of Soma and Erina backward with the Hot Springs Investigation and BLUE arcs. It overstays its welcome and loses that spark because characters are no longer changing. Searching for an endgame that had already passed.

It Has A New Character Problem

Not only does Food Wars extend beyond a natural end, the series then introduces two major new characters that it tried to give a huge amount of important in a short time. Asahi and Mana Nakiri are both major wrenches thrown into Erina's life as she's finally come into her own as a chef. This isn't a bad idea in theory, but the BLUE arc is nowhere near long enough to give them the importance the series treats them with. It's like the non-existent "main villain" appears without any build-up. The series extends the goal post further, while simultaneously shrinking the field so it doesn't give itself space to run.

Asahi and Mana lose impact, but are presented as impacting,so this dissonance between their portrayal and audience perception makes their interactions with other characters increasingly stale as they continue. This further emphasizes how the manga went on longer than it should.

It Has Three Endings, But Only Needs One

The main reason the Food Wars anime should end after the Promotion Exams arc is that the series then goes on to end twice after, and neither is as objectively good as the first. The Promotion Exams arc ends with a new status quo with Soma and the others at the top, Soma gets a little closer with Erina, and the series overall end with a dual page spread of Soma and Erina -- the central duo of the series. It's a fun ending for the series wrapping up all its plots until it introduces more.

The series follows this up with a time skip, signalling a Part 2 of the series, so it introduces new characters and ideas to shake things up. So the final chapter of the series sees Erina refuse to accept Soma's cooking is good. It's a fun play on her actual feelings for his dish, but this post-timeskip era ends with Soma continuing to challenge her. So it's neither a major status quo change, nor a character one as it doesn't seem to change their relationship in any significant way.

Skip to the Epilogue

That brings us to the third ending of the series, the epilogue. Le Dessert took place over four special chapters featuring a second time jump into their adulthood. It changes the status quo once more as it reveals what characters do for the rest of their lives, and gives fans a little more of Erina and Soma's future (but it doesn't push in that way, admittedly). The best part? You don't need the context of the final arc to enjoy it.

As it's stated that Soma goes off to train in their third year, the anime can just jump to their adult future and get even more of a response for the time jump rather than having it be just another one. There's plenty of reasons to stop the anime with this current arc of Season 4, but that's just our take. What's yours? Would you want Food Wars anime to adapt everything? Where should it end? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!