Ark returns to Horobi’s body and henshins. He completely overpowers Aruto and with an All Extinction finisher, forces him to dehenshin. Isamu tries shooting at Ark, but it doesn’t even leave a scratch.
Ark swipes Isamu’s blaster and points it at Izu, quickly pulling the trigger. Aruto struggles to reach her, but Jin quickly zooms to her and knocks her out of the way.
Ark flips Jin in the air before slamming him back to the ground. Aruto runs over to him.
Jin says Ark has grown too powerful for humans and tells them to run for safety. Jin hides around the corner to give himself enough time to transmit Ark’s combat data somewhere.
Ark dehenshins and says no Humagear can ever defeat him. He leaves Horobi’s body and takes over Jin’s once more.
Back at Hiden Manufacturing, Aruto and Isamu get bandaged up. Aruto feels a little helpless even though both Izu and Isamu feel Jin was fighting back against Ark’s control.
Aruto admits that he is scared as he never thought about how terrifying an uncontrollable, evolved AI could really be.
Back at Daybreak, the MetsubouJinrai crew again pledge their undying devotion to Ark as it fashions a Driver and Japanese Wolf Key for Naki. Ark tells Naki to pay a visit to Gai.
Over at the hospital, Yua speaks with Ai-chan who tries to comfort her. Ai-chan says Yua was just acting on good intentions and has a strong sense of responsibility.
Yua admits causing so much harm as a member of ZAIA and feels especially guilty for how much she’s hurt Isamu. Ai-chan asks if she wants to apologize to him.
Over at ZAIAHiden HQ, Gai tells VP Jun that on the day of the RaidRisers’ release, they will intentionally corrupt all ZAIASpecs in order to drive people to purchase RaidRisers as a defense against the rogue tech.
VP Jun is concerned about people possibly getting hurt by corrupting ZAIASpecs. But Gai says a little sacrifice is necessary to be successful in business.
Later, VP Jun visits Aruto to ask for help in organizing a successful hostile takeover of the company in an effort to remove Gai as president. VP Jun is surprised by Aruto’s defeatist attitude.
VP Jun says Grandpa Hiden entrusted the company’s ideals to him and he will not stand for Gai’s nonsense any longer. VP Jun admits he took too long to make the right decision.
SVP Sanzo rolls in a Humagear and Aruto activates Shesta. VP Jun asks Shesta to help them collect evidence of Gai’s wrongdoings.
In the ZAIAHiden parking garage, Gai is walking to his car when Naki and Ikazuchi appear. Naki holds out the Dodo Key and Gai says he will be recovering his company’s property.
But Naki henshins using the new Japanese Wolf Key and zooms past Gai in a flash. Before he knows it, he is standing in just his boxers after Naki sliced all his clothes off.
Naki says Ark, who has revived and become a Kamen Rider, wanted to send its regards to Gai.
Naki and Ikazuchi leave. An enraged Gai calls on his A.I.M.S. men to mobilize.
Isamu visits Yua at the hospital to keep her updated. He asks what’s troubling her.
Isamu is caught off guard by Yua apologizing for saying his normal life was boring. But not only that, she regrets essentially betraying and abandoning him when she joined ZAIA.
And for that, she feels truly terrible.
Yua, feeling awkward at the situation, says Ai-chan told her to say that. But Ai-chan tells Yua to just speak honestly from the heart, especially as she was on the right track to a great apology.
Isamu smiles about how good Ai-chan is. Yua agrees and says she can’t really consider Ai-chan just a mere tool. Isamu turns to leave and says he does want Ai-chan back later.
Meanwhile, Gai orders his A.I.M.S. troops to spread out as they wait for Ark and Co. Back at ZAIAHiden HQ, SVP Sanzo and Shesta are in the president’s office to collect all the information they can use against Gai.
Ark lets out the horrifying shrieks of despair which instantly incapacitates all the A.I.M.S. troops.
MetsubouJinrai arrive with Ark in the Driver on Jin’s body. Ark declares Gai will be eliminated.
Horobi, Ikazuchi and Naki all henshin alongside Ark. Ark says humanity is nothing but a tool to him.
Across the country, all ZAIASpecs suddenly malfunction, causing their users to begin to rampage. Isamu, still at the hospital, does what he can to yank the ZAIASpec off all the hospital staff attacking patients.
Over at Hiden Manufacturing, VP Jun thanks Aruto for helping with reviving Shesta to get the information they need. Aruto thanks VP Jun for believing in Shesta.
VP Jun points out that it feels like Aruto is the one that lost hope in Humagears. Aruto isn’t so sure, but he remembers Jin’s words to him earlier.
VP Jun says if Aruto, of all people, can no longer believe in Humagears, then who will? Grandpa Hiden created Humagears and Aruto’s father was one of them.
VP Jun says the Hiden family taught him about the potential future that Humagears have for humanity. And that he has never met anyone who loves Humagears more than Aruto.
Aruto bows and thanks VP Jun before hurrying out.
Horobi and Ikazuchi take care of two A.I.M.S. Raiders before joining Naki against Gai. Gai is able to knock them down with a Jacking Break and he turns his attention to Ark.
Gai’s moves don’t work as well against Ark which allows the other three to deliver finishers to break him down. Ark tells Gai that a tool shouldn’t think for itself.
Ark delivers an All Extinction finisher at Gai, forcing him to dehenshin. Gai stumbles away, saying he has not lost yet.
Aruto arrives and faces Ark who says nothing Aruto can do will change the outcome.
Aruto admits he is terrified of Ark, but he will no longer run away.
Aruto holds off an attack from Ark and is able to leap up and slash down on it.
Ark stumbles back and Jin calls out to Aruto.
Ark stifles Jin, telling him not to resist. Instead, Ark delivers an All Extinction finisher at Aruto, forcing him to dehenshin.
Ark approaches Aruto, but he stops and turns around, suddenly walking away.
Back at ZAIAHiden HQ, a completely mangled Gai stumbles into his office where VP Jun, SVP Sanzo and Shesta show him the data they have that they can use against him at a board meeting to force him out of the company.
Gai says that is 1000% impossible, especially when there is no one else that can run the company but him.
VP Jun says he can definitely think of someone else…
Ooo! I very much liked this.
My favorite thing about this episode was really just how serious everyone was. We had a few lighthearted moments with SVP Sanzo’s goofy face, but every single character had a moment this week that was important to the story and their own personal development. It was exciting and dramatic and great to watch.
For Aruto, the episode was the typical “I doubt myself” episode for our title hero that usually happens right before the final arc. And it was handled pretty well. Aruto has been positive all this time about the potential for Humagears and AI technology, despite everything that has gone wrong. But getting the brunt of the Ark’s real power and seeing Jin and Horobi, whom he also had faith in, so easily controlled by Ark could be very disheartening for him. It’s easy to feel defeated. Thankfully, he’s got good people around him to remind him exactly what he, himself taught them when it comes to Humagears and even humanity in general.
VP Jun’s almost abrupt turnaround from power-hungry comic relief to a sincere connection to Grandpa Hiden for Aruto and ultimately getting Aruto to snap out of his defeatist stuper is a little off. But I can overlook such a shift like that when everything else works so well. It’s a good full circle moment for VP Jun, but I feel like they could’ve played around with Gai pushing VP Jun harder to get him to wake up.
Yua and Isamu’s little conversation at the hospital was also good. I’ve harped on how annoyed I’ve been by what they did to Isamu. And during the horrible clip shows, the show seemed to further make Isamu the butt of a joke by way of Yua’s comments. It was very interesting then in this episode how Yua apologized for essentially mocking Isamu these last few weeks. But also a nice moment when she essentially admits, as much as she can, that she turned her back on someone who may have had her back all along. We were introduced to them as partners and they worked well together, even if they butt heads sometimes. So it was a nice moment between them, even though I again think they could’ve done a little more with it.
I screamed with Jin saved Izu. Lol I loved it! Last week, I mentioned that I was worried what they were going to do to Jin’s character. But I am so relieved with the Jin we did get here. He looks firmly anti-Ark and expressed very emotional pleas to Aruto a few times during the episode. Not to mention him sending data to a green-lighted someone or something. If any of the MetsubouJinrai can break free, it’ll be Jin. And that would be very much in line with his character development.
That said, I’m kinda sad about where Horobi’s character is heading. I will hold out hope that after Ark, he’ll regain his footing as a leader in some way.
Next week appears to be Gai’s big redemption story. Or however close to a redemption story can be reached for Gai. I may be setting myself up for disappointment, but I have high hopes for Gai’s big backstory.
It just seems like we’re so far removed from the worst of Gai’s behavior that it almost seems like a thing of the past. So this supposed-to-be climactic battle between Gai and Ark felt very anti-climactic. The week after week of Gai getting his ass handed to him also kind of diluted the potential impact for a climactic embarrassment of a beat down like this one or possibly next week. But we’ll see.
I have no idea how to climax Gai’s story. Either his backstory is so amazing that he actually has a chance at redemption despite his evil acts. Or he digs himself deeper into the pits of hell. OR! We’ll be completely disappointed. Eeek! Let’s hope for the best! Lol
Also, we can’t ignore Gai in his boxers. Toei seems to like getting their leading men out of their clothes lately. (lol) But I will half-assume they were trying to sell those ZAIA boxers. And I have to say it worked. Because I definitely want a pair for myself. Are they on sale at the Kamen Rider Store Tokyo?
Overall, a great and exciting episode with lots of developments. Just the right kind of episode to keep the momentum going.