Daiji and Sakura try to get the rampaging Revice under control. George arrives with the Thunder Gale Stamp which he says could erase one or both of Ikki and Vice for good. But he will put his trust in Ikki and Vice’s relationship for both of them to survive.
“Our actions are what defines us!”
To help, George decides he will henshin himself. He declares that it is finally time for him to surpass his daddy.
George henshins to Demons and works with Daiji and karate girl to subdue not-IkkiVice. Daiji stamps Revice with Thunder Gale and after a hesitant pause, Revice sparks and falls to the ground.
Daiji screams for his brother.
Ikki wakes up and finds himself in front of Happy Spa. But he is absolutely terrified as he walks in to this horrifying version of his family’s home, complete with odd versions of his mother and siblings. He makes his way to the baths and finds Giftarians enjoying a soak and seductively waving him over to join them.
George says Ikki must be fighting for his life inside his mind. And outside of his mind, the Gifu coffin continues floating toward them. Aguilera screams at the wooden slab until a hand emerges from it. She is ready to savor her husband-to-be’s touch for the first time. But the Gifu hand instead backhands her across her face.
Aguilera is flabbergasted. Sakura feels sorry for her. Olteca laughs that Aguilera is no longer worthy of being Gifu’s vessel. Unlike him.
Olteca says it will be him that fuses with Gifu today. In fact, he will transcend even Gifu himself. George comments that Olteca is now a Phase-4. They battle as Juliamaki runs over to Aguilera, trying to comfort her.
George does very well in his battle, but is forced to dehenshin after delivering a good hit on Gifulteca.
Back in Ikki’s mind, he stops himself from joining the Giftarians for a soak when he hears his father calling him. But it’s actually Vail in his father’s body.
Vail enjoys being back in Papa Igarashi’s body and says Ikki has no chance against him without his demon partner. Vail laughs at the suggestion that he is scared of the Igarashi’s happiness.
Vail says that the Igarashis cannot be happy so long as Gifu DNA lingers inside them. That makes the siblings demons themselves. And one day, Vice will become just like him. Vail suggests Ikki just forget Vice and his family and enjoy life here.
Ikki does not care about enjoying life or suffering. All he cares about is being able to protect his family.
Vail says Ikki and his family can burn in hell together then.
Ikki is suddenly transported to another room that contains the Gifu slab and…
Vice approaches Ikki and punches and kicks him to the ground. Ikki remembers all the happy memories with his family. He says Vice has protected him all this time and also accepted his broken soul. Thanks to Vice, Ikki was able to avoid being crushed by the trauma of the fire.
Ikki thanks Vice. But now, it’s Ikki’s turn to protect him. And he does so by slashing at Vice across the chest.
George, Sakura and Daiji watch and are shocked as Revice takes the Thunder Gale Stamp and uphenshins.
IkkiVice take on Olteca and easily defeat him with a Revice Strike.
Olteca and the Gifu slab are forcibly separated.
The Gifu slab lets out its tentacle hand and grabs Olteca. Olteca flashes back to all memories of him and the other two Deadmans before accepting that perhaps the world was never meant to be his.
Gifu gobbles Olteca up and then shoots up into the sky.
George says Gifu must not be interested in humans.
Ikki and Vice dehenshin and are back to normal.
Aguilera quietly stands and walks away as Juliamaki cries and begs her not to leave him. Sakura yells over to her. Aguilera pauses, but then continues to leave.
Elsewhere, Buu-san helps a weak Papa Igarashi who may have gotten all his memories back.
Sakura brings George to Weekend HQ and the daddy and son come face to face. George asks his father why he didn’t tell him he was alive. Papa Karizaki says once he becomes a parent, he will understand.
Papa Karizaki compliments George on Thunder Gale and asks his son to join him in finding a way to defeat Gifu. Sakura says they need to join forces now that Gifu is truly back.
Papa Karizaki bows and begs George who just turns and walks away. “Don’t become like me,” Papa Karizaki says.
Sakura says she will stay and help and asks what she can do.
At Fenix, Director Akaishi commends Daiji for returning and calls him a valued member of the organization. Daiji snaps back and says he’s only here to eliminate the rot that is infecting it.
At the spa, Mama Igarashi and Ikki are cleaning up while Papa Igarashi’s letter to them is read. He says he has chosen to go into hiding for now and apologizes. Now that he has gotten his memories back, his mind is all messed up and he promises to return home one day.
I gotta be honest. I was very much underwhelmed. I feel like this episode is meant to be the climax and conclusion to this arc of the season. But I just wasn’t ~feeling~ it. It wasn’t as impactful as I think it should have been. And because the season has been so great and on point most of the time, the expectations are raised. I honestly don’t think they were able to clear the high bar they’ve set for themselves.
If we’re talking about this arc, the signature episode was definitely Episode 25 with the reveal about Papa Igarashi and Vail. Absolutely perfect. I guess this arc was meant to flesh out the dynamics between a human and their demon. Show us many different examples of that “relationship” between a human and their demon, both good and bad.
While they did a solid job introducing Vail to us and teasing us about Papa (and Mama) Igarashi’s past, I think the show dropped the ball with pretty much everyone else. That includes the unceremonious end to Olteca. (huhu more on that later). That includes the rushed bye bye to Kagerou. And it also includes the almost half-hearted attempt at giving us a climactic moment in Ikki and Vice’s relationship in this episode as well.
This episode absolutely should’ve been focused mainly, if not solely, on Ikki and Vice. First of all, they modified the Happy Spa set and brought in red spotlights, but barely even utilized them. Ikki traveling through his mind and then coming face to face with the “humanized” Vice should be a whole episode on its own. Heck, it deserves an opening credits-less episode at that.
The way they had Ikki appear very conflicted and defeated since the revelation about Papa Igarashi, but then not really going anywhere is very disappointing.
Ikki wanting to be Vice’s protector? Wonderful moment. I liked it. But it wasn’t as impactful or emotional as it should have been. And it really should have been considering Ikki and Vice’s relationship (aside from the Igarashis of course) is the central pillar of this season.
Remaining very honest, I laughed out loud when Gifu backhanded his former wife to be. And no, I wasn’t laughing at a woman getting slapped. I was laughing at the absurdity of that moment. That honestly was Saber-level wacko. And it just took valuable time away from what should’ve been the main focus of the episode and that is, again, Ikki-Vice.
Aguilera having an existential crisis is another plot development that should get its own episode as well. Especially if it were to include touching upon the love triangle with Juliamaki and Sakura as well as whatever the hell they were doing with Olteca and the coffin.
The slap was just so random and really illustrative of where their story has gone, to be honest. (Read: downhill)
I think I’ve been spoiled too much by Zero-One having given their antagonists deep stories and character development. And also memories of being let down by such underdeveloped, yet promising characters (and actors) such as the Roidmudes in Drive and the Megido3 in Saber.
I was holding out hope Makolteca would survive somehow, but I was also fully expecting he’d be donezo sooner rather than later. Of course, we don’t know that we’ve seen the last of Olteca. Who knows where the hell the Gifu slab zoomed off to. (Really, WTF was that? lol) So hopefully, Olteca pops up and pops out of their Papa Gifu in the future. But I still felt very sad as Olteca delivered his final lines before getting gobbled up by a tree thing. Seki Hayata did great there and absolutely deserves better material.
Again, all of this extra stuff with the Deadman3 and Gifu, I could’ve done without. There were much more relevant and interesting things to have focused on in this episode instead.
For example, that scene between Ikki and Vail was excellent. I wanted more of that. Why not have Vail taunting Ikki more through the hellish version of Happy Spa? I know this isn’t the conclusion to Papa Igarashi/Vail’s story. But why not have more of that confrontation?
Why not have Ikki interact with the hell versions of his mother or his siblings more? Have those interactions break Ikki down more so that his final face off with Vice would have more meaning and impact.
And why not have Ikki and Vice actually talking to each other. It was certainly a waste of an opportunity for Kentaro Maeda to give us some meaty and juicy performances.
Like I mentioned earlier, Ikki wanting to protect Vice was a great moment. But I didn’t get what the point was with the Kentaro Maeda Vice being all aggressive and threatening to Ikki before Ikki slashes at him. What was that supposed to signify or express? And what does any of that have to do with George’s deus ex machina Thunder Gale Stamp?
For a new power-up like this, it really should have been a bigger and more explosive episode.
Speaking of George though, I loved seeing him henshin. He was very fun as Demons. Though I certainly hope a Kamen Rider fanboy like himself will design and develop his own suit in the future. Come on now. lol
That’s another thing that should’ve gotten a bit more focus and room to breathe too. George henshining and fighting for the first time should’ve been a big moment. And then to connect that with his meeting his not-dead father for the first time, it deserves more than just throwaway scenes in a rushed, cramped episode like this was.
Talk about rushed, Buu-san whisking Papa Igarashi away and then the abrupt scenes of the family at the end were all just part of the salty icing on top of this underwhelming cake.
A positive and maybe one of the few scenes I did love was Daiji being all snippy with the director at the end. I would love for Daiji to be the one that gets rid of the creepy director for good. Imagine having to suffer through the director making creepy skeevy faces every week instead of having Hiromi or Olteca instead. That’s Saber-type of buffoonery lol
Anyway! We’ll see what’s next for Revice. The preview for next week looks like the typical breather episode after a climactic week. Though I don’t actually feel like I need a breather since this episode wasn’t all that heavy anyway.
Revice has done very well overall and set their bar very high. Even if the season’s worst is still better than what other season’s might have attempted in the past, I still have high expectations. Unreasonable, maybe. But having such a strong season overall and one that has proven itself very much in just 28 episodes, I really expect them to be on point more often than they have been recently.