Nobuharu and Amy let their true colors shine and we get our first mech transformation!
[ガブリンチョ！ カミツキがったい] Gaburincho! Kamitsuki Gattai
Gaburincho! Snapping Combination!
Writer: Riku Sanjo
In the first episode, we were introduced to Daigo and pretty much got to know the gist of what his character is all about. This time around, we are properly introduced to KyoryuBlue and KyoryuPink, Nobuharu and Ami respectively. A closer look is given to their lifestyles and what motivates them to fight for justice, as well as some of their insecurities.
Let’s start with Nobuharu, since he got a majority of the focus this episode. Nobuharu lives the life of a typical family man, well, surrogate family man. He helps take care of his sister and niece, who he lives with and is, of course, very protective of. He seems to work as a handy-man, always fixing something at the restaurant, or helping his niece build and paint a dinosaur statue. What his family doesn’t know about him, though, is that he fights to protect the Earth as KyoryuBlue.
And, he’d like to keep it that way if at all possible. Especially after an incident where his niece got injured during an attack, which he jumped in as KyoryuBlue to fend off. The problem is that his sister despises the blue hero, thinking that he caused her daughter to get hurt. Knowing this, Nobuharu vows to keep them out of harms way at all cost. This includes keeping his identity a secret so as to not draw attention to them. In a way, he sees his family as a weakness, as a weight on his shoulders that he always has to keep out of danger. It makes him a bit timid when it comes to decision-making, as we see when he reluctantly hides with his family while Daigo runs into battle, gun blazing.
Daigo sees this as a completely wrong way of thinking about himself and confronts him about it. I really enjoyed this exchange between Nobuharu and Daigo, even if it was brief. Both actors did a great job in posing their side of the character’s argument, which puts them leaps higher than the previous cast in Go-Busters. Daigo questions if Nobuharu truly understands where he’s strength comes from, while Nobuharu criticizes Daigo’s judgement since he’s a wanderer and thus, has no one to look after.
As the episode goes on, he realizes that his niece actually looks up to the blue hero that saved her and that when it comes down to it, his family is his source of strength, not his weakness. It’s a message that anyone with family they care about can relate too. And for the show to go into this topic so early on with rather believable characters is hopefully a taste of what’s to come as far as the writing in this show.
Ami’s situation isn’t as deep or impactful as Nobuharu’s, but I liked how the show handled it. Ami is a member of a very wealthy and illustrious family. With her parents traveling in the U.S., she is left with her butler to look after her. As a member of this family, she is expected to act a certain way, very regal and proper in her mannerisms. But, as you can see in this episode, she’s a free spirit trapped in her surroundings. Ready to show how much ass she can kick and full of excitement, Ami is in her element when she fights as KyoryuPink. Which gives off a similar feel to the Showa Kamen Rider series’, where the persona of Ami is the mask she wears to hide her true self which only surfaces when she transforms.
What I thought the episode did really well is that they let Ami come to her conclusion on her own, without Daigo’s help. And it was sort of a spur-of-the-moment decision, as was the case with Nobuharu, but it felt more spontaneous since we didn’t dwell on her issue as much. She realized that saving the lives of others was more important than keeping her family’s name pristine, so she jumped into battle and, like Nobuharu, transformed in front of everyone. This sort of signified the decision from both characters to be upfront and true to yourself, which I found rather uplifting.
One thing that I am a bit worried about is how they will handle Daigo in the future. Right now, he’s the carefree guy who isn’t afraid to show who he is and a fearless fighter. So at this point in the story, he’s sort of guiding some of the less “enlightened” members of the team into believing in themselves. What could easily happens is that Daigo never changes, never learns anything throughout the season and continues to be the fearless leader he is now. For me, that would be a huge letdown since it would just mean that the rest of the team is imperfect and that they have to catch up to Daigo’s level. I’m hoping that, down the line, he will come across a situation that makes him question or realize that his way of diving into battle can sometimes come with consequences that he was not ready for. Any growth on his part will definitely round out the show in the way that a lot in recent history failed to accomplish.
We also got to see the first mech transformation of the show, Kyoryuzin. By combining the mechs of GabuTyra, Stegotchi and Dricera, the mighty robot is formed, and I must say that while I really like the practical effects used in the transformation, the sequence was way too long. Even for a first-time reveal, this sequence felt like it was a minute too long. Also, I’m not a big fan of the background used in the sequence. I noticed it in the first promos but I figured it may be something used in the commercials for the toys, since that’s usually of the quality of those TV spots. But, seeing them used in the actual episode, while preferable to CG backgrounds, felt incredibly lackluster and kind of cheap. I know that many people digged it, but I took me out of the sequence entirely. I hope we get variations of this sequence in the future because everything else about it was pretty cool.
As for the villians, not more is learned outside of the method through which the monster-of-the-week is chosen. And, we still haven’t learned much about KyoryuGreen or KyoryuBlack, though next episode is a Green-focused one, so I’m sure that more light will be shed on his story next week.