Noel asks Kogure to meet him at Jurer to ask for a Lupin blank check so he can win the “Tiny Bubbles” Collection Piece at a secret, black market auction of stolen art. Kogure gives him the checkbook and Noel asks Umika to accompany him.
Even though all auction guests are wearing masks, Noel asks Umika to remember all their faces. The auction begins and Umika is shocked when she realizes the bids are in American dollars and not Japanese yen. Noel wins the Collection Piece with a bid of US$2 million.
Just then, the room goes dark. And when the lights come back on, Gangler Gurisuto stands at the auctioneer podium and grabs the Piece before running out.
Noel and Umika morph and chase after him. The Pats arrive. But Gurisuto blows bubbles that allow him to float away and disappear. Noel and Umika also leave. Keiichiro notes that the auction was supposed to have been a secret operation between them and Japanese police, so how did Noel know about it?
Noel and Umika run into the auctioneer who presents them with the bill of US$2 million + 8% tax. Even if the Piece is missing, ownership transfers to the winning bidder as soon as that bid is accepted.
Back at Jurer, Noel asks Umika to draw the faces of all the people at the auction to find the Gangler. Noel then asks Jim Carter to use the police database to find their identities.
Later, Noel approaches the auctioneer with US$450,000 to help him stage a fake auction at the Toei Amphitheatre to draw out four possible suspects. When they arrive, Umika squeezes each of their cheeks and concludes none of them are Ganglers.
But Noel knew it was the auctioneer all along. The Lups morph and with Kairi clones and Noel switchmorphing to PatrenX, they defeat Gurisuto’s first life. Goche does her thing and the Lups hop into Lupin Kaiser and X Emperor Gunner to finish off Gurisuto for good.
Meanwhile, the Pats, accompanied by local cops, take the four black market art thieves into custody, thanks to a tip from Noel.
Sakuya is excited they’ve solved the case. But Tsukasa says Sakuya shouldn’t be satisfied with getting a win handed to them by Noel. Keiichiro says this feels more like “cleanup” than a win.
That evening at Jurer, Noel says Umika would make a great wife.
Well my goodness. That was the most fillery filler episode I’ve seen in a long time. At least, the most filler of episodes for LuPat so far.
And it was a pretty slow and boring one at that. I was surprised how uninterested I was in what was a very predictable episode. One of the only mildly enjoyable moments of the episode was Noel’s backflip:
Best way to get out of the way when someone just pops up in front of you.
The other was the very meta moment of the Keiichiro saying the Pats had cleanup duty again after the Lups. The only consolation is that this is a small part of the Pats finally piecing everything together before finally figuring out and confirming the Lups’ true identities. Though I’m not holding my breath. It’s one step forward, 25 steps back for the season when it comes to any sort of balance between the two teams. I mean, not even close to a 3-1 balance, to be honest. 5-1?
Anyway, a very slow, uninteresting and predictable episode on this off-week for the toku shows. The episode must have been written/filmed during the movie-filming period. We do always get one of those kinds of obvious episodes every year.