Ryuga refuses to believe Katsuragi’s bombshell. But Katsuragi says it’s true.
He goes on to explain that Soichi had a confrontation with Katsuragi who wanted out of Faust. Instead of letting that happen, Soichi knocked Katsuragi out, killed the real Satou Tarou who arrived for the drug trial and then switched their faces.
Soichi then took Katsuragi and called the police to have them arrive just as Ryuga arrived in the apartment with the dead Katsuragi-faced Tarou.
Sento refuses to believe any of this. But Gentoku says Sento’s fragmented memories are also Soichi’s doing. Sento’s Katsuragi memory was erased by Soichi before being injected with Nebula Gas.
Katsuragi laughs and reiterates that Sento really is the Devil’s Scientist who didn’t care about human life if it meant the advancement of his science.
Katsuragi leaves, but hopes Sentakumi will be able to return to his side at Faust.
Misora wakes up, heaving heard everything.
Meanwhile, Soichi stings Papa Prime Minister to allow Gentoku to slip back into the role.
Back at the lab, Sento tries to take his mind off what he’s just learned by working. But Ryuga is upset and takes issue with Sento being so calm about the situation, considering he is apparently responsible for the deaths of so many people, including Kasumi.
Misora is helpless as Ryuga challenges Sento to fight. They head outside, Ryuga intent on want to unleash his anger at Sento.
They both henshin, Sento reluctantly so.
During the battle, Sento is distracted as he remembers the different times where he seemed to slip into a Katsuragi Takumi-type of personality. That allows Ryuga to deliver a powerful hit.
Ryuga wants Sento to fight him for reals. So Sento goes Sparkling and a Sparkling Finish kick forces Ryuga to dehenshin.
Sento also dehenshins and says Ryuga is right. It was he who killed Kasumi. It was he who hurt so many people.
Sento walks away, but Ryuga seems even more upset.
Misora approaches Sento who apologizes for not telling her about Soichi. Misora says he should be thinking about his own troubles. Sento recalls being so worried about not remembering his past and doing everything he can to regain his memory. Now, it’s a different story.
Trying to cheer him up, Misora says no matter what, the Kiryu Sento she knows is a narcissistic, egotistic hero of justice.
Over at Touto Palace, Gentoku is meeting with the other prime ministers and showing them they have safely recovered Pandora’s Box. But he quickly gets blunt with them and says he knows they all want to obtain the Box’s energy in order to achieve world domination.
Gentoku confronts the two prime ministers, saying it wasn’t the Skywall that divided Japan. It was their own selfish ambitions. And now it’s time to decide which of them will lead a reunified country.
Next day, Sento is still wandering around the city, thinking about how everything has been a lie. At the lab, Misora asks Ryuga why he is so mad at Sento. But Ryuga can’t even explain it himself.
Downtown, Sento comes across two Smash flanked by Guardians as they terrorize the locals. Sento quickly henshins and fights them off. But Sento is again distracted by his thoughts of guilt. The two Smash force him to dehenshin.
Ryuga arrives just in time and he henshins. Sento expresses his guilt, but Ryuga says while he did design all those experiments, Sento still put on the belt to save and protect people. That wasn’t Katsuragi Takumi or Satou Tarou. That was Kiryu Sento!
Sento laughs, not believing that of all people it is Ryuga giving him this pep talk. He gets up and says he remembers who he is now: a narcissistic, egotistical hero of justice.
Sento henshins and he and Ryuga make quick work of the Guardians and two Smash. They dehenshin.
Ryuga says this does not mean he’s forgiven Sento. Sento says he knows.
Sento collects the Smash element from the two men, wondering who could have turned them into Smash. Gentoku appears and says it was the Hokuto government as they have declared war this morning.
The Hokuto prime minister watches from her war room and thanks Soichi as Blood Stark for the help.
Meanwhile, a trio of new guys also watch the proceedings as a Rider-looking person lays waste to Guardians by the Skywall.
After the initial surprise(?) of last week’s revelation, Sento being Katsuragi isn’t that much of a shock anymore. Especially when remembering little things in past episodes and the very predictable explanation of how Soichi orchestrated, at the very least, Katsuragi’s fake murder.
So in that sense, this episode was a little bit of a disappointment.
First, what I did enjoy the most was seeing Sento and Ryuga’s relationship being used very effectively here. Ryuga’s conflicted feelings toward Sento makes more sense when thinking about what they’ve been through together and his growth thanks in part to Sento rather than Ryuga being upset at the “Devil’s Scientist” who created the Rider and Smash systems.
Ryuga’s mini-speech to Sento during that final battle in the episode was pretty great and wouldn’t have worked as well had their relationship/bromance not been so effectively established in the first 15 episodes.
Along with that, Misora was also used well as support to that relationship and a sort of outside observer who cares about her two friends.
On the other hand, I’m disappointed she didn’t get some meatier material from the confirmation of Soichi being Blood Stark. I guess one character having an existential crisis (Sento) is enough. Lol Still, I was hoping for a little more dramatic moment from Misora. Looking back though, I guess last week’s excellent scene between her and Soichi and her breaking down was probably that “moment.”
Sento and Ryuga confirmed it, but she didn’t need any more confirmation than what she saw with her own eyes last week. So with that, I think it was enough. And it allowed her to slip into that support role this week as Sento and Ryuga took center stage.
This episode was basically two parts. First, Gentoku’s exposition. And second, Sento wrapping his head around the very real possibility/truth.
I guess there could be other ways to have revealed Sento is actually a face-swapped Katsuragi. (And even then, you can never be 100% sure of course lol) But it appears the show wants to get that out of the way as they move on to the next arc with those new arrivals at the end of the episode.
Again, Sento being Katsuragi makes sense. It explains a lot. Now, what the show does with that revelation and where Sento’s character goes from here I think will ultimately determine how creatively successful this season will end up being. There’s plenty of material that could be mined from this. But just as many ways to drop the ball.
Oh and Soichi tossing that knife in Satou Tarou’s back was pretty crazy!
Overall, it was a fine episode. I might have been expecting a little more, but it was okay for what it was and accomplished what it appears to have set out to do.