Mob Psycho 100 III came with perhaps one of the most chiseled episodes of its entire franchise. Hooks were exchanged and bitches slapped in Mob Psycho 100 III Episode 5. Dimple (Ekubo) took to his Godly golden Squidward form and battled a drawn-out Shigeo Kageyama. There are a lot of cues to take from the Dimple vs Mob battle and the persistence of the Divine Tree. It is also one of the most symbolic fights of the series given that both have been friends for so long.

The pending questions

Mob vs Ekubo in Mob Psycho 100 III Episode 5
courtesy of muse asia

However before this happened in the later half of the episode, the initial half explored a lot about the moral positions of Dimple and his plan to become a god. In all this revelation, it seems like Dimple himself is brainwashed by something.

Does Dimple still care for his friend Shigeo? Is he truly evil? Is the Mob Psycho 100 divine tree controlling Dimple too? This article is also a continuation of our previous one, where we discussed if Dimple is evil. We still stand by it – he isn’t. Why? Read on.

Mob Psycho 100 III Episode 5 cues where we can consider Dimple to be brainwashed 

Dimple's divine tree form
Dimple in his divine tree body, pressured immensely by Teru’s esper powers. Courtesy of muse asia
  • It has been revealed since the beginning of Mob Psycho 100 III Episode 4 that Dimple is the true culprit.
    • The one who has claimed himself as the founder of the Psycho Helmet religion and the one responsible for bringing the divine tree to Salt City.
    • When everyone was getting brainwashed, that was actually happening through the divine tree’s roots.

Dimple was shown to have taken over Divine Tree’s energy reserve

Mob Psycho 100 releases opening song
courtesy of Youtube Official trailer (via Anitv Channel)
  • But because the tree itself wasn’t sentient and incapable of intelligence, Dimple took over the tree and became its brain.

But what if the tree has been dormant and awake all this time? What if the tree itself is also using Dimple to further grow and become powerful enough? 

Brainwashing doesn’t separate the individual’s personality

Now to analyze this further, note how everyone who has been controlled by the divine tree doesn’t lose their initial personality.

  • Even Reigen maintains his usual countenances. Ritsu also is very similar to how he already is. The only deviation one can witness in the brainwashed individual is the point where he is confronted about the divine tree. The individual becomes immediately very defensive and aggressive at such moments.

The philosophical debate of morality in Dimple vs Mob

Mob Psycho 100 Dimple
Dimple and Mob have a philosophical discussion on the morality of brainwashing, courtesy of muse asia
  1. The conversation between Mob and Dimple is interesting, firstly because Mob asks Dimple why he is doing this. To which he replies to make everyone happy.
  2. This is bullshit, which Mob catches early on. Dimple also agrees, saying that this is just what he is saying to justify his actions.

Dimple’s justification may be the tree brainwashing his selfish side

Mob Psycho 100
Dimple explains how the world shall be happy by praying to him five times a day, courtesy of muse asia

In reality what Dimple wishes is simply for everyone to feed him power, and the rest of the happiness and rest of the BS they can figure out for themselves. This is also further revealed by Dimple, that his only wish is to make people pray to him five times a day. After that, he won’t interfere with people’s lives. They can find whatever happiness they can from their interpretation of the divine tree.

Hanazawa is an example of how The Divine Tree itself can indirectly brainwash

Divine Tree in Mob Psycho 100
An affected Hanazawa is about to wake up and convince Mob to side with Divine Tree and Dimple, courtesy of muse asia

Take Teru Hanazawa for example. Before being brainwashed, he was completely fazed by the idea of the divine tree taking over. But after his defeat, in Mob Psycho 100 III Episode 5 he suddenly seems to care about the divine tree.

He has started to believe in Dimple’s cause. Mob asks Teru to snap out of his brainwashing to which Dimple replies that he hasn’t done anything to him.

Kageyama vs Ekubo
Dimple explains that he will not change anyone’s personality, via museasia

This could either be a bluff or an indication of another thing. It is revealed in the episode the individuals could be brainwashed even without having to consume the seed candy that was earlier shown being distributed.

  • Reigen was simply exposed to the aura of the follower’s brainwashing and got affected. Similarly, it is likely that Teru too was affected in that manner.
  • Now, what if Dimple in Mob Psycho 100 himself was affected by the Divine Tree’s subconscious influence?

Mob Psycho 100 III Parallel with Naruto Shippuden

This would be parallel to how Madara Uchiha was used by Kaguya Otutsuki. We were led to believe Madara is the true enemy, whereas he was used all along for a false dream. As such it wouldn’t be off-putting if Dimple is also being brainwashed. Because if he is, it is completely natural for his inner feelings of domination and becoming a ruler to become his primary disposition.

Mob wishes for Dimple to reveal his true emotional self, hinting that Dimple may not actually be evil

Mob Psycho 100 Dimple
Dimple answers hesitantly that he always wished to use Mob (there is an immediate regret on his face that tells that this is not completely true, Dimple may have wanted to use Mob but he soon truly started to find their friendship real). courtesy of muse asia

Dimple thinks to himself that Mob is about at his power’s end, almost as to reassure his confidence. He reiterates the idea that he has seen the end of Mob’s powers, which are finite. Throughout Dimple vs Mob battle, Dimple uses the divine tree to suck out Mob’s powers.

  • In the precipice of gaining almost half of Mob’s power through the tree, Dimple transforms himself into his godly form.
  • He then continues to engage Mob in a series of combat which he names with the prefix godly. Godly hook, Godly punch, Godly beam, etc.
  • Dimple is sure that Mob is very powerful, so much so that he is afraid of showing himself to Mob initially. Mob comments on this and asks Dimple to come out in his true form so the two of them could talk.

Concluding

Mob Psycho 100 III Episode 5
Dimple is worried that he hit Mob with too much force after using God Beam, via Muse Asia

Dimple doesn’t want to kill Mob, or terminate him. This is made evident in how he looks down when Mob asks who Dimple truly is, to which he hesitantly replies that he always wanted to use Mob. During Dimple vs Mob looking down at the ground is a common trope of showing how the character himself is not sure of his conviction. What if, the divine tree is influencing Dimple and straying him from his true emotions, which care for his friends?

It feels more like Dimple has evil plans which are selfish, but he himself isn’t an evil reincarnation per se. Even unlike the CLAW boss, Dimple is not incapable of human emotions and empathy. Dimple likely still values his friendship with Mob. How this takes a turn in the next episode will be something amazing to behold.


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Rhytham is a Philosophy graduate who founded a state-level organization that promotes anime and Japanese culture in his home state of Assam India. The org is named Assam Senpai Society. He is also an ardent writer, poet, musician, vocalist, graphic designer, and photoshop artist. He has worked on multiple state and national level conventions. Other than anime, catch him watching western series that really have in themselves the solidity to catch his attention.