Recap: Kamen Rider Drive, Episodes 31 and 32 – Why Did the Important Memories Disappear? and What is Waiting at the End of Evolution?

Drive 31

Shinnosuke meets with Brain to say the jig is up. He knows Makage is 001.

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Brain sees Shinnosuke is not henshining which means Krim does not want him to go near 001. Brain gets ready to finish him off, but Belt-san arrives just in time.

Shinnosuke henshins and tosses Brain around, but Gou suddenly arrives and starts shooting. Brain confirms Gou’s working for them now. Gou henshins and shoots at Shinnosuke, sending him into the water.

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Back at the SID, Shinnosuke and Belt-san argue. Shinnosuke says he’ll die facing 001 if it means saving the people. Belt-san storms off.

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Otta arrives with a case for them. Fuziki Tooru tells them about his family’s small factory. He refuses to inherit the factory from his father. But lately after seeing his father easily tired from the work, Tooru decides he’ll take over. He is about to tell his father, but can’t bring himself to. He runs off to buy something, but when he returns his father is gone. Like, gone without a trace. For years. His mother reminds him that his good for nothing father left 10 years ago without saying a word. Even the employees and customers of the factory said the same thing.

Now Tooru is confused.

Rewriting memories. It must be 001.

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They head to the factory where they detect Gravity Surge particles. Tooru says he felt the Heaviness on his way back with the dorayaki. Tooru explains that his father would always buy dorayaki for them to eat together after an argument and everything would be all better.

Tooru’s mother comes and is angry he’s even called the police here. She still doesn’t remember father Fuziki even when Tooru shows her a recent picture. She drags him away.

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Meanwhile, Makage asks Medic if he can borrow her Grim Reapers. She laughs at him thinking he’s panicking after being found out. But Heart asks if this is still all part of the plan. What is he after, anyway?

Emotions, Makage says. Just a little bit more and “that moment” will arrive. They need human emotions to evolve, that’s why they study humans and acquire those different emotions.

Brain’s jealousy, Medic’s passion, Heart’s joy.

When that strong emotion intensifies to its limit, they will achieve the final evolution and start the second Global Freeze.

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For Makage, Shinnosuke is the key to that evolution. He suggests Heart find what will bring him to his ultimate emotion as well. But Heart says he’s already found it.

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Across town, Chase is rewatching his memories. He wonders if the Promised Number is…

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At the Pit, Kiriko arrives to tell Belt-san that 001 has made his move. But she also wonders if there is a reason he is being extra cautious this time. Belt-san admits that he is scared. He has been having dreams of that night Proto Drive was defeated by 001. Belt-san feels that the same will happen to Shinnosuke, but for good this time.

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It’s nighttime and Shinnosuke is in the SID alone when he gets an e-mail from a Mr. X. Next morning, he shows everyone the e-mail containing a list of people examined during the epidemic scare 10 years ago. With a 90% fatality rate of some new virus threat, a nationwide screening was conducted and these are the results. Turns out it was the Dept. of National Defense that released the news of the virus and launched the examinations. All signed by one Minister Makage. In the end, no one was found infected.

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The whole thing must have been one big charade.

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They wonder who this Mr. X might be. But right now, Shinnosuke and Kiriko meet with Otta at the factory. They are surprised to find Tooru has no memory of them or his asking them to find his father. He now also believes his father abandoned them years ago. He walks away and sees Tooru also has an ice scar.

Shinnosuke goes to Nira and asks for a meeting with Makage. He bluntly tells Nira that Makage is a Roidmude and is working to remove evidence from the police. Shinnosuke gives Nira the examination list, but Nira just tears it up and laughs at him.

Shinnosuke does not back down, however, and vows to expose Makage. He leaves.

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Nira immediately calls Makage unbeknownst to him that Midnight Shadow is recording the conversation.

Kiriko runs to Belt-san to tell him that Shinnosuke has gone to see Makage.

Shinnosuke finds Makage at the Tokyo Central Forum and confronts him. Makage feigns ignorance until Shinnosuke tosses Shift Cars at him, forcing him to morph into 001. The transformation initiates a Gravity Shift.

Makage’s two bodyguards morph into Reapers and they throw a Belt-san-less Shinnosuke around until Chase arrives to help. He says he’ll take care of the Reapers.

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Kiriko and Belt-san arrive as Shinnosuke demands Makage tell him what his plan is. But Makage says it doesn’t matter because Shinnosuke won’t remember anyway. He shoots his ice needles and one hits Shinnosuke’s neck and he goes down.

Kiriko and Belt-san run over to Shinnosuke as Makage deactivates the Gravity Shift. Everyone around them is back to normal as if nothing has happened. Makage tells Belt-san that he will always make him remember the fear of that night Proto Drive and himself were destroyed.

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Outside, Chase finishes off the two Roidmudes, but Gou arrives and they start to fight.

Inside, Shinnosuke wakes up, seemingly not affected by Makage’s ice. Belt-san says they should retreat for now, but Shinnosuke says he will not let Makage go now that they’ve got him cornered.

Shinnosuke follows Makage outside. “So it doesn’t affect you either,” Makage says. Freezing memories is his power and anyone who finds out his identity will have their memories erased and rewritten. However, there was one man whom his power could not affect… Tomari Eisuke.

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Makage remembers that moment 12 years ago when he was confronted by Eisuke. With Eisuke not affected by his ice needle and even more determined to end him, Makage felt a deep emotion surge within him. A feeling of humiliation. That’s when he decided to just kill him instead.

Shinnosuke asks Belt-san to fight with him and he says he has no other choice.

Shinnosuke henshins to Formula. Makage is pleased. This is just what he needs. He wants Shinnosuke’s anger to grow even more and eventually suffer the same fate as his father.

“My name is Freeze,” he declares as he sends a blizzard of ice towards Shinnosuke. The Shift Cars come to help, but Freeze completely overpowers them, even forcing Shinnosuke to dehenshin.

But Shinnosuke does not want to give up.

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Chase and Gou’s fight interrupts the face off, but Makage says it’s okay since he’s not quite ready yet anyway. He manages to disappear, as does Gou.

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Back at the SID, Shinnosuke and Belt-san argue over his recklessness. Chief Jun tries to calm them down and decides to take Belt-san for a little walk to cool his head.

Shinnosuke doesn’t understand why Belt-san is being overly cautious, but Kiriko flashes back to what Krim told her earlier. She assures Shinnosuke that everything will be fine and that he and Belt-san can work together next time they face 001.

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Chief Jun has brought Belt-san up to his favorite spot on the roof. He comes up here to reenergize and motivate himself as he looks out over the city and sees all the people he must work hard for.

Chief Jun says he’s done everything he can to help Krim, for which he is grateful. But now they’ve come close to their ultimate goal to expose 001. Now’s the time for them to band together.

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Back at the SID, the team is going over how to subdue 001’s abilities. Chase offers that when someone hit with an ice needle hears a certain keyword, 001 can override their thoughts with fake memories.

Shinnosuke says for Tooru and his family, the keyword was Fuziki Iwao, his father. Chase says 001 used the same method to control the memories of police force.

Otta says that means the keyword is… Loli sojou!

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Chase says that Otta’s strange Roidmude pronunciations must be a side effect of having his memory erased.

Kyu adds that Fuziki Iwao isn’t the only one that has been abducted. Going through the list provided by Mr. X, there have been 20 people abducted in similar circumstances. And these disappearances started 12 years ago around the time Papa Tomari was killed.

Otta goes to Nira to tell him about Makage being a Roidmude and being involved in Papa Tomari’s death. Nira tries to pooh-pooh Otta’s accusations.

Later, Nira reports to Makage on the SID digging into the past. But Makage doesn’t seem to really care. In fact, Makage no longer has any use for Nira. Makage leaves.

“You’re just going to throw me away? Damn you, Makage!”

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Meanwhile, Shinnosuke asks Belt-san to help remove the ice needle from his neck. If they analyze the needle, they might be able to find an antidote. But to do that they’ll need to use Mad Doctor and Shinnosuke must be in the same condition from when he was hit, which means he cannot henshin.

Belt-san says a normal human won’t be able to stand Mad Doctor. Shinnosuke insists. There’s no other way.

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Shinnosuke is in immense pain. Belt-san tells Rinna and Kiriko to shut it down, but Shinnosuke tells them to keep going. He will never give up.

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Across town, Chase finds Heart. He asks Heart to tell him about the Ultimate Evolution. Heart says if he wants to know, then they must fight. They transform and henshin.

As they fight, Heart talks. Ultimate Evolution is the final stage of their development and they can reach that point by pushing the emotions they’ve learned from the humans to the limit. For him, that emotion is one he can only feel in the heat of battle… joy.

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Heart forces Chase to dehenshin. He says it appears he won’t be able to reach that ultimate moment with Chase as an opponent. Just as he thought, the only one who can push him to the point of no return is… “him.”

Chase wonders who it is.

Shinnosuke regains consciousness and Rinna says the extraction was a success. She can definitely make an antidote now.

Kiriko says he is worrying them too much. Shinnosuke apologizes, but says he just had to come back because he knows they’ll all be waiting for him with a smile.

Otta comes into The Pit with confirmation that all the abducted people from 12 years ago were Makage’s doing as none of their family members remember them either. But why did Tooru’s father also get abducted now?

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Rinna comes in with the new antidote and tests it on Otta.

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Rinna quizzes him and he answers correctly. Otta finally says “Roidmude.”

Shinnosuke gets into top gear when he realizes Makage is waiting on the results of an experiment, likely with the abducted people. But where is he holding them?

“I think I know!”

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Nira bursts into the SID with a location. Kyu sees the address is an abandoned building with a suspiciously high amount of electricity usage with reports of the Heaviness in the area.

But why is Nira helping them now after being such an ass to them all this time. “I’ve finally come to my senses,” Nira says. “I… no, the entire police force have been used by Makage.”

This seems like a very sudden change of heart, but Nira apologizes for everything and asks them to believe him. “I’m a police officer, after all.”

Shinnosuke says he understands.

Chief Jun is about to deploy the SID, but Nira knocks him aside to do it himself.

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Chase is in The Pit. He asks Belt-san why he hasn’t gone with Shinnosuke who’s already left. “Aren’t you afraid of them?” Belt-san asks. Chase says he does not understand that emotion. All he knows is that protecting people is the duty of a Kamen Rider. That’s what Krim taught him.

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Belt-san tells Chase to bring him to Shinnosuke.

Shinnosuke is at the factory, again talking to Tooru. He gives him the antidote to use to remember his father. But Tooru just throws it into the trash and says he doesn’t have a father.

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Shinnosuke says Tooru might not remember, but he promised that he would bring back his father. He takes out a dorayaki which he hopes Tooru can greet his father with.

Chief Jun checks Shinnosuke’s horoscope and it is an incredibly unlucky day for him.

“The same as that day…”

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He takes a photo of him and Papa Tomari and asks him to take care of his son today.

Later, Tooru takes a bite out of the dorayaki. He starts to remember his father.

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Across town, Shinnosuke, Kiriko and Otta are at the strange building. They enter and find people being held inside strange chambers. They are the abducted peoples.

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And also there to meet them are Makage, Brain and Gou.

Makage explains that 12 years ago, in order to investigate the cause of his humiliation, he carefully searched for the unique people who could withstand his abilities like Papa Tomari did.

Papa Tomari was special, Makage says, “You could even say he was… superhuman.”

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However, he found that even among people who exhibited similar qualities, none of them were as remarkable. Makage didn’t understand why his power did not work on these worthless humans.

Brain brings a frozen Fuziki-san out and tosses him to the floor. That’s when Tooru arrives and tells Makage not to speak of his father in that way.

Chase and Belt-san have brought Tooru here. Tooru says while his father may not be a big shot, he had big dreams. He wanted to build parts for the fastest cars in the world.

But how, Makage asks, didn’t he erase Tooru’s memories?

“He may be small to you, but to me, he is the best father anyone could ask for!”
“Shut up, you worm!”

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Makage goes 001 and shoots at them, but Shinnosuke pushes him out of the way. Chase shoots at Brain to step back.

Tooru goes to his father and begs him to wake up. Which he does. He’s heard everything Tooru said and even feels a little embarrassed now. They both laugh.

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Shinnosuke, meanwhile, is fired up. Belt-san thinks about what Chief Jun, Chase and Shinnosuke himself said earlier. He flies on over to Shinnosuke’s waist and says he won’t hesitate or be afraid any longer. He tells Shinnosuke to start his engine and they can fight 001, together.

Shinnosuke henshins and takes on 001. Brain tries to go help, but Chase says he will be his opponent. But Gou wants Chase to be his opponent.

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Chase and Gou henshin.

Outside, Makage 001 Freeze tosses Shinnosuke around and again tries to freeze him. But Shinnosuke uses Max Flare to counter the coldness while Gou, Brain and Chase battle nearby.

Shinnosuke goes Formula and uses Formula 01 to overwhelm Freeze before using a Full Full Formula Cannon Full Throttle Finisher.

Only, it doesn’t finish 001 at all. Instead, 001 emerges from the fire and begins to glow to brightly, Emperor Zett would’ve orgasmed by now.

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This is 001’s Ultimate Evolution! 001 declares he is invincible and will now be able to stop all of humanity’s memories. He unleashes a huge attack that pierces right through Shinnosuke’s stomach.

Shinnosuke dehenshins and falls to the ground.

Kiriko and Otta run over and try to get him to wake up. Otta listens to his chest, but his heart… Belt-san is offline. It’s not looking good.

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It is then confirmed on screen. Metropolitan Police Department, Special Investigations Division Officer, Tomari Shinnosuke – Killed in action.

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Episode Thoughts

How dramatic! Dead silence in the preview for Episode 33. (Even for 32 at the end of 31 lol) It’s funny, I don’t seem to remember such silence when Gentarou or Kota died. (And now I see dying main Riders is a common go-to plot point lol)

But these two were still good episodes I think. Mainly because we finally got a little tidbit on the Roidmudes and what their purpose to exist in this story even might be.

The show actually did more to explain 001’s motivations in a few episodes and in a good way than they have with the Roidmude idols in 30+ episodes. Yikes.

The whole idea of 001 manipulating the police to allow his Roidmude friends to work in the shadows to reach an ultimate goal is believable. And Ultimate Evolution is a reasonable endgame for the villains. But it only feels like that applies to 001. Heart, Brain, Medic and previously Chase went along with really no reason to be causing trouble. And even now, we’re not really sure if they even know what they’re doing.

Collecting human emotions to evolve and become the superior beings to rule the world? Sure. That’s fine. But all that came in just the last few episodes. They haven’t even really suggested a motivation (that could always evolve or just be a misdirection). So this big reveal actually comes off a little too typical.

And if anything, it seems that this big reveal is only to lead into whatever new thing we’ll get in Episode 33. I think we all know Shinnosuke is not dead, yes? At least, he’ll be resurrected. Unless, this really is Kamen Rider Chaser and not Drive? lol

At least these episodes did a better job of using the case of the week and the idea of fathers and protecting memories as a way to move the main stories of the series as well as Shinnosuke’s development. Much better than that crazy lady and Gou. And I accept 001’s master plan. That’s actually one of the few stories that has had a successful build up.

On the flipside, I really don’t see Nira’s purpose other than be yet another comic relief character. And they squeeze in the idea of Otta also being hit with an ice needle, but don’t even show him with a scar. That doesn’t explain why he’s been able to work with the SID all this time and actually be aware of the Roidmude, unlike everyone else in the city. His wrong pronunciations don’t seem to have anything to do with 001’s abilities other than “Oh, that’s just something we can explain away by saying it’s just a side effect.” Um, okay.

Plus, it doesn’t appear Tooru needed an antidote to remember his father, just a bite into some delicious bread. So really, the point of that Mad Doctor scene was to show Shinnosuke is somehow special and maybe “superhuman.” The Promised One Number perhaps? Who knows, since we don’t even know what a Promised Number even is.

Anyway, I don’t think I’ve ever been so critical or negative or regularly disappointed about a toku show I actually still enjoy and have fun with. Usually, if I’m critical, it’s because the show actually sucks. (Hello Power Rangers Samurai and Megaforce. But while Drive has dropped a lot of balls and potential so far, I’m still pretty excited to watch the show every week. Hmm… very interesting. Maybe I too have been hit with an ice needle. lol

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