In this episode, Shunpei thinks he can produce magic and began to show it off. Luckily, a TV host who happened to be at the park watching the tricks offered Shunpei to perform magic, LIVE! Good for Shunpei! Or is it?
First thing first, when Rinko visits the antique shop, Koyomi noticed that she seems different. While Wajima tells her that she looks happy and Haruto adds that it’s good to see someone recovering from their tragedy, I don’t think so. Granted that Rinko wanted to help, but I think there’s more to it. I think she has a crush on Haruto.
Anyways, moving on to the main focus, which is Shunpei, the TV host asked him to do a magic trick live on the park, which is a success. Then the TV host asks Shunpei if he can show his magic tricks on the TV show, he said yes. However Haruto suspects that this is a Phantom plot, evidenced by Shunpei failing to produce magic in front of Haruto. This causes tension between Haruto and Shunpei, as the latter tells him that he might be jealous that Shunpei is now a mage.
Back at the Phantom lair (which is apparently anywhere), HellHound is revealed to survived the fight and tells the Chief Phantoms that Haruto’s theory is indeed correct. He planned to use Shunpei into thinking that the latter can do magic and then drives him to despair. To be honest it was somewhat surprising that we found out the true plan early, as usually things like this only happened during the climax. Also, I really like Phoenix’s attitude towards HellHound. At first he is disgusted that HellHound is so weak that he gets defeated easily but when HellHound is revealed to be alive, he knew what to be expected from HellHound. Dumb Phoenix.
At night, Haruto wondered about what Shunpei said earlier, only to be comforted by Wajima. We get to see more of Haruto’s past, which is after his meeting with the White Wizard. Haruto found out that Wajima created the Wizard Rings, and tells Wajima that he needs to create more rings because he doesn’t want that tragedy to happen again. Wajima said that Haruto’s words: “I’d rather move forward than dwelling in the past” is what motivates him and that Haruto should do the same too. Now I know the theme of this series. You have to forget your past in order to move forward better. Really, really good lesson not only to kids, but to people of all ages as well. WHO SAYS KAMEN RIDER IS FOR KIDS HUH?!
The following day, as Shunpei is about to perform his magic, Haruto deduced that the TV host IS the HellHound Phantom! It appears that his plan is to humiliate Shunpei in front of the whole Japan, so that Shunpei will go emo and starts to transform into a Phantom. At first I thought he can just manipulate fire, but it appears that he can make Shunpei use magic by going into his shadows and produce fire by controlling Shunpei! It’s a very tricky trick huh? Also making someone drive into despair by humiliating him in front of everyone is a really mean move. Good job, or should I say, BAD job HellHound. I mean it.
Making his way to the TV Station, Haruto pass the guards by putting the Sleep Ringon the guard’s finger and then scan it so that the guard will fall asleep. So that’s how the ring really works on an enemy! You have to put the ring on him and then the magic will activate! It’s kinda hard but it’s a good concept though. However those kind of rings would be useless against Phantoms who have no finger at all.
Haruto transforms in a Blade-esque transformation, which catches the attention of Kizaki, the secret agent guy in episode 2. While the previous episode shows that he is somewhat threatening, this episode shows that he’s not. Maybe he’s just wanted to handle the Phantoms by himself and not just rely on Wizard after all.
Anyways, the fight with HellHound is really good. By this time, we all knew that Wizard’s fighting style is flipping around, relying on his acrobatics to inflict damage on the enemy. That’s a really unique method you know, it even looks on par with Koichi Sakamoto’s wire-fu techniques! Heck, the suit actor did those flips without any wire! You have to give him props to that!
Because HellHound uses fire, it’s time for Wizard to make his Water Style debut. I really love the “SuiSui” chant, with the surfing theme as the music. Anyways Water Style is awesome. Even though it is weaker but it increases Wizard’s agility, which is very useful since Wizard tends to use acrobatics as his signature fighting style.
After defeating HellHound with a Water Slash Strike, Wizard goes to the horrified Shunpei. He the ‘proposed’ to Shunpei, and enters the Underworld. Hoho, really, the scene looks gay. Anyways the Underworld fights continues to impress me. It appears that unlike Kamen Rider Ryuki, Wizard must also summon his bike if he summoned WizarDragon. This is because he has to tame WizarDragon by using his bike. A good move into using the bike here, makes sense to the Kamen Rider concept. But the bad thing is, since WizarDragon is CGI, this idea will be forgotten in the upcoming episodes, making the bike useless.
During the fight with the Underworld’s Phantom, it appears that WizarDragon also has a finisher attack, which involves the Kick Strike Ring. How? The WizarDragon transforms into a giant foot and Wizard kicks it, so basically it is a Strike Wizard but bigger and with WizarDragon’s power. Really cool, although the boot looks weird when viewed from the side.
With Shunpei being restored to normal, he decides that he wants to be Haruto’s apprentince, again. This is because he wants to do something for magic, and since Haruto is the one that can use magic, he wants to help Haruto any way that he can. Also, Rinko makes that whole crush thingy again. Seriously, I would love to see if there’s any romance between Haruto and her. The addition of Rinko and Shunpei also annoys Koyomi to the max, which is crucial on the next episode.
Overall, a really great episode. The highlights of this episode is the Water Style debut, and it doesn’t fail to deliver the hype. The Underworld scene also did a great job too.