kurokiba, hayama, alice and souma should be the same level as erina by now.
How was he close when he had massive help in the last days?
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well i think that takumi should be equal to if not abit bellow soma but we have no way to prove so we cant put him there but he should be a above mimasaka the only reason he really lost in the 1st place to him was because he had no knowledge about him un like soma and the fact that during the festival he said him self he was shocked that takumi could go just as fast as soma with easy
Takumi was at the academy for two years more than Souma, Mimasaka was a known shokugeki guy, it's CIS that Takumi didn't know so that's no excuse. I doubt Takumi has the skill and creativeness to outmaneuver Mimasaka like Soma did.
That's just speed though, not skill.
Takumi tried to trump Mimisaki, and the latter read him like a book, he already displayed that he can't improvise as well as Souma can.
Every story needs a good old-fashioned villain.
the whole "takumi is shit because he lost to mimasaka" is exaggerated. however I don't really feel like defending him until he proves himself.