The Donbros are at Donbura where Tsuyoshi is on the floor, apologizing to them for having allowed himself to turn into a Hitotsuki. He offers to leave the Donbros as punishment. But Master Kaito says he cannot do that without enough Kibi Points or until they finish all their work.
Tsuyoshi asks Tarou to punch him instead. But Tarou says he does not hit people. Haruka says Tsuyoshi should not worry much since everything is alright now.
Tarou points out that ordinary people make mistakes. But the good thing is, people can learn from those mistakes.
Jirou comes running in, apologizing for being late to the meeting since he’s not really a morning person. He introduces himself to Tarou and tells them he is happy to have joined the team.
Tarou acknowledges that Jirou is “part of the reason I was able to come back.” Jirou says he’d do anything for Tarou. The others, however, say that Tarou’s return is actually all Jirou.
Tarou understands, but wants to thank all of them for their help. He takes his hat off and bows in gratitude, much to everyone’s pleasant surprise. Tarou says it’s only the right thing to do in this situation. Haruka excitedly asks Tarou to repeat it, but he refuses.
Anyway, Jirou has invitations to a welcome party for himself and hands it to his new teammates.
Later, Shinichi and Haruka express their concerns about Jirou’s true, potentially scary nature. They tell him about Jirou proposing to kill them last time. Tarou says in the end, Jirou did not hurt anyone and he helped him return. So it’s alright.
Shinichi and Haruka also tell Tarou about Sonoi having been key in helping.
Tarou heads to work and Jirou decides to shadow him as a new Shirokuma deliveryman, hoping to follow in every single one of Tarou’s footsteps. Jirou says he respects Tarou so much and wants to learn as much as he can from him. Jirou asks if there’s anyone Tarou looks up to. When Tarou says he does not, Jirou decides to begin looking up to the other Donbros.
First, Jirou attempts to become a mangaka like Haruka. But when he brings up her plagiarism accusations, she rejects him.
Next, Jirou tries out a haiku with Shinichi. Shinichi asks if Jirou understands wabi-sabi aesthetics and Jirou replies that he really enjoys wasabi and how it makes one’s nose twitch. Shinichi is amused enough to allow Jirou to recite his haiku.
Look at the blue sky
Wow, man, look at the blue sky
Look at the blue sky
Shinichi gives Jirou’s haiku a huge X.
Jirou moves on to “helping” Tsuyoshi with a project proposal to a potential investor. But when Jirou lays down ten yen coin, it ends up sabotaging Tsuyoshi’s pitch.
At Donbura, Tsuyoshi scolds Jirou for ruining his presentation and tells him to leave him alone. Jirou asks Tsuyoshi if there’s something bothering him. When Tsuyoshi begins to mention Miho, Jirou assumes it’s a bad relationship and suggests Tsuyoshi break up with her.
Tsuyoshi screams of course not!
Meanwhile, a Hitotsuki has taken over a struggling gamer and he begins to rampage downtown. Tsubasa appears and henshins, but the Hitotsuki manages to get away when Jirou pops up out of nowhere.
Jirou wants to introduce himself to Tsubasa and has a nice bowl of dog food for his new teammate. Little puppy Tsubasa instinctively begins munching on the treats, but catches himself. He then lets out his paw when Jirou asks for it. Annoyed, Tsubasa leaves.
Tarou finds the Hitotsuki and they battle. But Sonoi arrives and charges at Tarou who dehenshins before he gets slashed in the neck. Tarou would like to speak with him.
Tarou asks what is the meaning of Sonoi helping to bring him back when it was he who killed him in the first place.
Sonoi says he would rather not answer that question. Tarou understands and says that is a good answer. When Tarou says that is all, Sonoi leaves.
Over at the Kijino apartment, Tsuyoshi asks Miho if she ever thought about breaking up with him. Miho scoffs at the idea and says of course not. She tells Tsuyoshi to stand up and puts their foreheads together. She wants to encourage him by telling him “[He] can do it!” ten thousand times.
At the restaurant, Tarou is the only one who has come for Jirou’s welcome party. Tarou says the others returned their invites because Jirou was being a pest. Jirou says he was only trying to be helpful. Tarou says he understands Jirou wanting to be liked. But sometimes his actions to make that happen can come across as selfish.
Jirou says it doesn’t matter then. He’s at least happy that Tarou is here and promises to work hard to become Tarou’s eventual replacement. Tarou says that is absurd since there has never been anyone like him, there is no one like him now, nor will there be anyone like him in the future.
Jirou asks what that makes him then. And Tarou says Jirou is an otomo/companion. Those words seem to trigger something inside Jirou as he goes from red to white hot flames.
Haruka is walking down the dark driveway behind Toei studios when she is surprised to come across Jirou.
Jirou seemingly begins to recite the legend of Momotaro in a menacing way before he henshins and tries to attack Haruka. She also henshins, but Jirou swipes her glasses, taking her powers from her and leaving.
Jirou does the same to Shinichi and Tsubasa, continuing to recite the legend of Momotaro as he takes their glasses and power.
Next day, Tarou battles with the Hitotsuki. But Jirou appears, concluding his recitation of the Momotaro legend. Only this time, adding that a new hero named Jirou descended from the heavens to deal with the young Tarou who had become too arrogant for his own good.
Haruka and Shinichi come running to warn Tarou about Jirou having taken their powers. Jirou uses Tsubasa’s glasses to henshin into Inu Brother before then transforming into Saru Brother. Because Jirou is in the form of his teammates, Tarou seems to hesitate in attacking him decisively.
Tsuyoshi comes flying in to help Tarou and is able to force Jirou out of the Saru henshin.
Jirou is about to use the Oni Sister glasses. But Haruka walks over and slaps him across the face. Jirou drops all the glasses as Haruka scolds Jirou, saying how dare he uses their powers against Tarou.
Jirou dehenshins and appears to have snapped out of his dark stupor, unsure of what’s just happened. Haruka glares at him. But Jirou grabs Haruka out of the way when the Hitotsuki runs at her from behind.
Jirou says the Hitotsuki must have tricked him. Fired up, Jirou henshins and then uphenshins to Don Doragoku Alter to wear the Hitotsuki down. He then delivers a Lighting Dragon Flash finisher at the Hitotsuki to finish off its first life.
As the Hitotsuki embiggens, the other Donbros quickly form Don Onitaijin to finish it off for good.
The Hitotsuki’s Gear falls into Jirou’s hand and it is purified into a DragonRanger Gear.
Back at Donbura, Jirou is on his knees apologizing to everyone for what’s happened, even if he can’t remember. Tarou says Shinichi and Haruka were right about Jirou being a bit sus. They ask for an apology and he obliges. The others are again pleasantly surprised by humble Tarou.
Oooo! I love it. Thank you Donbrothers for existing at this time. Yes, I am thankful that the Donbros have been able to provide me much more joy and excitement in place of Revice every week. But I’m also just really enjoying how refreshing this season has been so far.
I’ve gotten used to the season’s quirks already even if I still lament the CGI Donbros. But just the way they have developed the characters and the story is so different from the norm, and really, anything I’ve seen in a Sentai so far. So it gives it that extra bit of excitement for me. You don’t know what’s ahead.
And I’ve mentioned before how it feels like a serialized drama. A lot of plot threads running concurrently aside from the main themes, but never feeling overwhelming. And when those threads sometimes intersect, it’s resulted in some pretty great moments. The way they continue to weave in elements from the Momotaro legend is also fun.
This episode was certainly focused on giving us more about Jirou. And I definitely did not see any of that coming! darkJirou was so unexpected. But I enjoyed it. It’s a very interesting development for him. Especially after he’s had a pretty good debut so far. But I suppose this split personality (?) plays a part in *spoileralert* Jirou having two “forms” or colors or whatever. But considering he’s also a peach baby, again, I hope there’s also more story there as well.
Seeing Jirou basically being a Tarou fanboy who also wants to knock him off his throne was an interesting dynamic already. But having this darker side to him opens up some nice possibilities for the future. Especially when it is a contrast to his aww shucks kind of personality. (When he is not proposing to kill them all of course lol)
Now, usually I would be sideeyeing a season’s lack of emerging endgame or clearly defined goals. Especially by Episode 16. But the Donbros themselves have been engaging enough characters to carry the weight of the season on their own. And again, because of this unique direction in terms of storytelling, I’m perhaps a bit more understanding and willing to go along for the ride.
Maybe it’s my Korean drama and soap opera-watching experience that allows me that mindset going into Donbros.
I’m of course also careful to temper my expectations because I’ve definitely been burned by the Toei tokus many times in the past. Obviously as currently as Revice. So, I am definitely enjoying and, yeah, I guess loving Donbrothers. But I’m holding myself back from joining in Tarou’s entrance fanfare just yet. lol
Overall, another great, enjoyable and fun episode with more brand new tidbits to munch on like Tsubasa on dog food.
Non-CGI Donbro of the Week
Yay! Another week of physical Inu Brother. I just realized though, what happens when it’s the penultimate episode/finale helmetless roll call? I hope they don’t just put Tsuyoshi and Tsubasa’s head on top of a CGI suit. Yikes! lol