While George observes the Gifu pulsations becoming more frequent, Happy Spa has been turned upside down by the quick-tempered and scary Vice and a clumsy Juliamaki. After Daiji scolds both, he notices Sakura looking a bit bothered. But she says she’s alright and excuses herself.
George walks in just as she’s about to leave. He puts her arm around her and implies that he knows she’s been meeting with the sketchy Ushijima Family.
George says he’s found a way to switch Ikki and Vice back, but before he tells them, he’d like to take a nice bath. He invites Papa Igarashi to join him.
While Papa Igarashi scrubs George’s back, George asks about the scar on his chest. Papa Igarashi says he doesn’t know how he got it. George remembers seeing the medical report showing Papa Igarashi has no heart.
Meanwhile at Mannequin HQ, Olteca admires the Demons Driver and is eager to maximize its full potential. He orders Aguilera to fetch George so he can find out more. But Aguilera balks at being ordered around. Olteca instead stamps an acolyte to turn her into a Giftarian and do the job instead.
Olteca tells Aguilera that unlike her, he will do everything to achieve his goals. Aguilera storms out.
Back at Fenix, George says that the longer Ikki and Vice remain in this situation, the more Ikki is in danger of starving to death. Which would also mean Vice dies as well. George explains that they can use the Rolling and Rex Vistamps in a reverse way in order to get Ikki to regain his position.
Vice is skeptical, reminded of how George used Hiromicchi as a lab rat. George asks Ikki what he thinks and Ikki asks for a bit of time to think. After George leaves, Ikki tells Vice that he understands where he’s coming from.
On a rooftop, Sakura recalls her meeting with Papa Karizaki Masumi, the leader of Weekend. Papa Karizaki acknowledges George has kept Sakura and her siblings busy and admits that it was he who gave Ikki the Rolling Vistamp. Papa Karizaki says Ikki’s relationship with his demon has gotten a bit sketchy. And he hoped Ikki would be able to suppress the demon. But because demons and Gifu have a strong, unbreakable connection, it is difficult to accomplish that.
Papa Karizaki said the Igarashi siblings know better than anyone that that is the truth. Sakura does not understand. But Papa Karizaki says your future depends on what you can learn from the past.
Hikaru approaches Sakura on the rooftop and says Weekend is waiting for her response to their invitation. Just then, George pops up and says he would like to know more about the organization’s secrets. Especially when his supposedly dead father is involved. Hikaru says he never expected George to have figured it out so quickly.
George explains how he was able to figure it out since only one person could’ve repaired the Libera Driver or create the Rolling Vistamp.
Suddenly, the Giftarian appears and tries to attack George. Sakura henshins to help him and Vice quickly runs in to help as well. While they are battling, Olteca appears and approaches George, saying he would like to ask for a favor.
George says he’s busy at the moment. Olteca replies that he’ll just have to use force then. George tries to pin Olteca to the railing and says he is no slouch himself. But Olteca says he’s not here to play games. He punches George in the stomach and whisks him away.
Vice and Sakura work together to finish off the Giftarian and its energy feeds into the Gifu coffin.
Vice and Sakura suddenly dehenshin.
Over at Fenix, Daiji is experiencing a bad headache as Kagerou pops in to taunt him about having continually grown stronger recently.
Olteca has George chained up by the wrists at Mannequin HQ. Olteca orders George to unlock the Demons Driver’s full power. George is surprised he knows about that, but Olteca says someone George knows very well informed him.
George laughs and says fine. His scientist senses are tingling and he too wants to find out what hidden powers are contained in the Driver his Daddy Karizaki made.
George says connecting to Fenix’s servers will reveal their location, but Olteca says that’s fine.
At the Spa, Sakura is having trouble reaching Daiji. Vice says why not try and figure this out themselves. But Sakura says Ikki will die without Karizaki-san. She angrily asks if Vice cares about Ikki or not. Vice says of course he does, he loves Ikki. But he is afraid George will use Ikki like he did Hiromi.
Ikki pops into the Gundephone to say that he can’t agree to do anything unless Vice is 100% on board. But saving George is a different story.
Just then, George calls Sakura to give her his location. Vice and Sakura hurry over. Weekend watches their every move.
Vice and Sakura are shocked to see George standing with Olteca when they run into them. Olteca explains that George helped reveal the Demons Driver’s true power. He henshins, as does Sakura. George says he did it since he wants to stay alive for now.
While Olteca and Sakura battle, Vice and Ikki have a talk. Ikki suggests making a new contract with Vice. They are one body and one soul. Ikki says he doesn’t trust George 100% either, but without him, they wouldn’t be able to continue helping people. So Ikki asks Vice to believe in him who believes in George.
Vice says of course then and asks Ikki to let him out on his own from time to time. Ikki says they can talk about that later.
Ikki and Vice use George’s plan earlier to use the Rolling and Rex Vistamps. And that does the trick. Once they henshin, Ikki takes over the body and they officially henshin to Jack Revice.
Ikki and Sakura work together to battle Olteca. Olteca tries the Demons Driver’s new power. But it is no match for Ikki and Sakura’s finishers. Olteca does not understand what’s happened
Ikki dehenshins and Sakura welcomes him back. Ikki thanks Vice. But something strange happens as Vice seemingly still has control over Ikki’s body.
Even George is shocked as he watches Ikki and Vice being able to take turns being in control of the one body.
Over at Weekend, Papa Ushijima asks Papa Karizaki if he knew this would happen. But Papa Karizaki says no.
At Mannequin HQ, Olteca is upset that George got to one-up him. But the Demons Driver says it was he and he alone who decides how to fight. And he realizes it’s time for him to “return home.”
Well that preview definitely has me excited for next week! But let’s focus on Episode 24 for now. And it was a great episode.
First, they “solved” (not really) Ikki’s predicament. And as much as the twist offers up a lot of interesting potential, I am most excited by the fact that we’ll get to see Kentaro Maeda acting as Vice for a while! Seeing the quick tease of that at the end of the episode already got me hyped. But I am very excited to see more of that in the coming episodes. (And I do mean episodes. I hope!)
In the way Wataru Hyuga has been so great as both Daiji and Kagerou (and it looks like we’ll be getting more of eyeliner-wearing Wataru Hyuga in the coming weeks too), I know Kentaro Maeda will be the same with Ikki and Vice.
In similar exciting acting news, I loved seeing that quick face off between Olteca and George. I actually wanted to see much more. It’s always fun to see two sneaky, cutthroat characters face off like that. Both Hayata Seki and Noritaka Hamao have been so good as Olteca and George, respectively. Especially when they play up that sinister sketchiness. But seeing that quick moment of them in each other’s face, I hope we get lots more confrontations in the future. It was very fun.
Not so fun was seeing Juliamaki now the season’s comic relief character and Aguilera suddenly seeming like she’s appalled by Olteca stamping that blindly loyal cultist as if she had no problem stamping people all over the place as long as the husband she never met got revived.
In more interesting developments, the faceless Papa Karizaki is great as there’s still a lot of mystery surrounding him and the Weekend too. Kind of sad, but also liking at the same time that the Ushijimas are not an actual family I guess. Sad because I would’ve loved to have seen a sketchy shadowy family working with the mad scientist. But I also like it because them pretending to be a family is so odd and also says a lot about this strange, secret organization.
Anyway, this was a good episode overall. Good and interesting developments. The show is keeping a good, steady pace with everyone involved somehow. But that preview is definitely very intriguing. I’ve always felt the season will have the Igarashis at the heart of the story. And it looks like a big episode for them next week.