Suggested Title: The Clone in the Machine

 

Summary:

 

Aelita and Yumi investigate a tower on Lyoko that was active for just a moment. As Jeremie and Aelita try to determine what happened, Yumi disappears without warning. A few minutes later Yumi is devirtualized and reappears on Earth, though they never managed to reestablish contact.

I'd be suspicious if someone didn't laugh at that, it's comedic GOLD!

Sissi: “Ulrich, what do you say we get together after school, huh?” / Ulrich: “Get together, with you? Very tempting but uh…not!”

 

Jeremie drops her off at the nurse’s office, but she soon regains consciousness and begins acting strangely. Manhandling the nurse, acting short with the other Lyoko warriors and even having no reaction to Ulrich’s womp womp joke. When Sissi suggests Ulrich’s only being mean because Yumi’s around, Yumi reacts by telling Ulrich to date Sissi because she’s pretty.

 

Before Team Lyoko can diagnose Yumi’s serious mental trauma, however, the principal drags her to his office. He gives her two hours of detention for assaulting the nurse, and when he threatens to call her parents about her behavior, Xana’s symbol glows Yumi’s forehead as she knocks him unconscious with his phone.

 

On Lyoko, finds an orb of energy floating over a mountain near the tower they investigated earlier. Jeremie tells her to keep investigating, but to be extra careful, since they’re still not sure what happened to Yumi and sending someone else in could be dangerous. His conversation gets cut short, though, when Yumi comes into his room and creepily attempts to flirt with him to convince him to take her to the factory. Ulrich and Odd enter his room, see this and storm off with the whole group at odds.

 

Jeremie convinces the other guys that Yumi is likely traumatized by what happened on Lyoko, accounting for her strange behavior. When they return to his room, though, Jeremie’s computer setup has been destroyed. The group concludes this is probably all a plan from Xana to distract them on Earth while he gets rid of Aelita. Yumi bursts onto the scene, asking if it’s time to go to the scanner room. For some reason Jeremie says yes and they bring her along. Jeremie begins the virtualization process for all three of them, but as the scanner door closes on Yumi, she catches it, escapes the pod and sets about sabotaging the scanners.

 

Aelita gets a closer look at Xana’s big ball, but something seems to freak her out. This gets the attention of a roachster, which begins to attack her, chasing her off. When the guys find Aelita, she tells them that the real Yumi is still on Lyoko, trapped inside the sphere. She tries to warn Jeremie not to get near Yumi, but he’s already gone to figure out why she never made it to Lyoko, and is quickly knocked unconscious.

The Lean, Mean, Calculating Machine, versus a young man playing possum

Welcome to the first bout of the Lyoko Wrestling Federation!

 

Aelita uses her ability to make things up to create a false image of Yumi, which somehow tricks the sphere into releasing the real Yumi. The team realizes that the scanners have been the target all along, but if Xana has already succeeded, then trying to return to Earth is a suicide mission. Yumi agrees to head back, in the hopes of stopping the sabotage, and a Yumi-on-Yumi cat fight begins. Even with Jeremie’s help, though, this clone war is a losing battle, and Jeremie gets thrown down a lethal shaft just before the return to the past activates itself and puts everything back to normal.

 

Reactions:

 

This episode is really embarrassing for the Lyoko gang, to the extent that if this happened in real life, you probably wouldn’t live down that time Xana cloned Yumi. Luckily when this did happen to me in real life, Xana’s clone had a bad cockney accent, so my friends were able to tell after a few minutes that I wasn’t just doing a bit.

 

Seriously though, Yumi’s mysterious vanishing act and complete lack of realistic emotions throughout the episodes should have been enough of a reason to be suspicious of her. When you factor in her inexplicable sympathy for Sissi, her uncharacteristic flirting with Jeremie and the sabotage of Jeremie’s computer, which everyone managed to conclude was likely her doing, it’s highly embarrassing that they would still agree to take zombie-Yumi to the scanner without even keeping an eye on her.

 

ENGAGE ROMANCE PROTOCOL!!

Hey baby, I would love to get a look at your...scanner.

 

The degree to which Jeremie, Ulrich and Odd are incapable of recognizing the fake Yumi actually borders on parody here, and if this was a different show, I might think they had become self aware. I mean this episode even takes one of its own inexplicable womp womp moments and turns it into a plot point! However when evil Yumi starts literally pulling the plug on the scanners it’s played too straight to be a joke…which is sort of impressive, considering.

 

On the subject of implausible moments, this episode contains the most egregious plot hole of any episode so far, one that even my generous suspension of disbelief can’t tolerate. The return to the past program runs itself. They’ve made it clear in every episode since the very first that Jeremie has to at least hit enter on the Lyoko computer’s keyboard to launch the return to the past. This time it miraculously starts itself when no one is at the computer, let alone someone smart enough to use the time travel subroutine of a supercomputer.

 

Whereas the last episode seemed to make a lot of progress, and felt like it was written by someone who both really understood the world of Code Lyoko and where the show wanted to take its story, this episode felt like it was written by a junior high school student who had the plot of Code Lyoko explained to them by a younger simbling. The plot itself is really straightforward, it’s just incredibly difficult to believe that they are fooled by such a miserable clone for so long.

How DID she get trapped though? Did this thing really manage to sneak up on her? It's a giant ball of light and noise!

I'd call this cruel and unusual punishment, but it still seems better than enduring some of the perplexing jokes made by Odd and Ulrich.

 

This episode also introduces another in the proud heritage of easily-foiled Xana obstacles: the bizarrely specific “Guardian”. The Guardian is the orange sphere that Yumi was trapped in that allegedly acts as a prison by somehow adapting to the body of its target. Aelita manages to destroy the prison by essentially shouting “hey look over there”, making it perhaps the least effective obstacle yet, though I’m not really sure who’s to blame for that.

 

I mean, clearly Xana’s not as clever as I would expect a sentient virus within a supercomputer to be, but Team Lyoko didn’t notice that their friend was compromised until she had almost successfully killed them all. Furthemore, I’m starting to wonder just how far Aelita’s Deus Ex Machina power extends, and I don’t feel like I can blame Xana for experiencing the same problem.

 

Join me next week when I will probably be trying something new once again. In the meantime, beware of friends who don’t laugh hysterically at your poorly translated French jokes!

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