Spanner finishes off the Malgam and catches the Chemy Deepmariner in a card. Houtarou excitedly goes to thank him, but Spanner ignores him and goes straight with Rinne. With a big smile, he hands her the Chemy Card as a present.
Houtarou says Spanner wasn’t this nice back at the kendo-jo. But while Spanner commends Houtarou for being decent in fighting off Malgams, he still doesn’t acknowledge him as a Kamen Rider.
Next day, Ryo catches up to Houtarou to tell him about the rumors of the mysterious hero that has been saving people from monsters. Houtarou is excited to hear that everyone is raving about him.
At the Academy, he tells Rinne about it, but she says “Good for you.” He asks if he’s done anything wrong to make her be so cold to him. She says No, so he invites her to their restaurant so he can make something unique for her.
Before she can answer, Renge and Sabimaru come to ask if they can borrow the Kamantis Card from Houtarou. He doesn’t feel right about swapping Chemys like they’re trading cards. But Renge says it’s just to help them capture Chemys with a powerful Card. Anyway, she offers Sasukemaru and Energyl Chemy Cards in exchange since she knows Houtarou would like to get to know them more.
Houtarou agrees to the temporary trade.
Minato-sensei comes in to introduce Spanner who will be helping them capture Chemys since he is a top rank alchemist sent to them by the big bosses.
Spanner makes a beeline to Rinne and happily greets her. But Spanner reiterates to everyone that he is not here as a student. In fact, he and Minato are equals.
Later, Houtarou asks Rinne if Spanner’s smile means he really likes her. But she doesn’t answer. Instead, they get an alert that there’s a Chemy nearby so they hurry over.
Spanner’s smile disappears from his face as he watches them run and repeats someone’s sentiment that the wheels of fate have begun to turn.
Houtarou and Rinne head into an abandoned warehouse where they are met by the Meikoku Sisters. And they have gotten hold of Antrooper Chemy.
When Houtarou asks what they want with the GotcharDriver, Atropos says the Chemy are miraculous and powerful things that they are just using in the “correct” way in order to open the “final door.”
Remembering the mysterious man’s words, Houtarou says the Sisters are lying and will never hand the Driver to them. Atropos tells Lachesis to take it from here. Atropos and Clotho leave Lachesis to use Antrooper to transform into a Malgam.
Houtarou quickly henshins in order to save the Chemy. But Lachesis somehow transports them to a strange underground labyrinth. Rinne tries to use alchemy to shield them from Lachesis’ attacks. But Houtarou tells her they have to run.
Rinne is able to use alchemy to bury two base Maglams. But Lachesis shoots at Houtarou from behind, forcing him to dehenshin.
Lachesis agrees with Houtarou that Rinne’s alchemy is amazing. But for Lachesis, that is not a surprise considering “he” taught her. That “he” refers to Rinne’s father whom Lachesis knows is a traitor.
Houtarou is shocked when Lachesis explains that the man who gave him the Driver was Kudo Fuga, Rinne’s father.
Rinne demands to know where her father is. But Lachesis cackles as she says they’ve killed him. She loves seeing Rinne’s despair and transforms back into a Malgam. She shoots at them, but Houtarou is able to whisk him and Rinne away with the help of Sasukemaru.
Rinne asks Houtarou if her father being dead is true. He explains how Papa Kudo protected him from the Sisters after he gave him the Driver. Rinne falls to the floor, distraught at never being able to see her father ever again.
Rinne recalls how when she first told him she wanted to become an alchemist, he taught her that the most important thing was to follow the rules. Which is why she cannot understand how her father, of all people, broke the rules himself and disappeared. Her father not only betrayed the Academy, but her especially. Rinne decided she was going to let him have it if they ever met again.
Houtarou says it’s time for them to go. But Rinne refuses, saying unlike Houtarou, she has nothing to live for. He asks what alchemy is to her. Rinne replies that it is simply her duty.
Houtarou says his duty is helping at the restaurant. His father had started it, but now his mother is taking care of it. So he’s gotta return so he can help at the shop and see his mother’s smile.
Rinne flashes back to memories with her father when she tells him her dream of wanting to make people happy like he does. Rinne begins to cry, remembering how she loved seeing his smile as well.
She says sorry, but she believes that her father is still alive. Houtarou says if that’s what she thinks, then he will believe it too. Saying again that they have to get out of here, Houtarou puts his hand out and Rinne grabs it. But they are met by two base Malgams again.
Houtarou asks Sasukemaru and Energyl to show him what they’ve got. He uses them to henshin to EnergyMaru and easily takes care of the first Malgam. Rinne tosses the VenomDake and DeepMariner Cards to Houtarou to help him finish off the other one.
Lachesis pops up and grabs Rinne. She demands Houtarou hand over the Driver or she’ll cut Rinne’s head off. Rinne tries to stop him, but Houtarou tosses the Driver over.
When Lachesis grabs the Driver, Energyl pops out to punch Lachesis to the ground. Rinne grabs the Driver and returns it to Houtarou who henshins.
Houtarou is able to defeat the Malgam, releasing Antrooper and Lachesis. Houtarou safely catches Antrooper in a Card.
Lachesis leaves and Houtarou and Rinne are back in the warehouse. But it begins to collapse. Rinne tries to use alchemy again, but nothing happens and she thinks she’s used up too much of her power. They try running out, but get trapped.
That is, until Spanner arrives and tosses Madwheel Chemy Card in. Using it together with Pilets, Houtarou uphenshins to MadPirate. Rinne hops on and rides him out of the rubble.
Houtarou again thanks Spanner, but Spanner grabs the Card from him and goes straight to Rinne. He tells her that he is happy she’s okay and then just walks away.
Later at the restaurant, Houtarou is surprised when Rinne walks in. She says she asked Minato-sensei for the address. Mama Ichinose welcomes Rinne and Houtarou is excited to whip up something special for her.
Houtarou serves up a Kudo Special of chicken, rice and egg. But after she takes a bite, she says it’s a bit off. It’s a No Gotcha.
No Gotcha? YES GOTCHA! I love this episode. Definitely my favorite of the season so far.
My favorite part of the episode was definitely the scenes with Houtarou and Rinne in the labyrinth. Really great moment between them. It’s fun seeing the guy be the one softening the heart of the moody, brooding girl instead of the other way around. Hehe.
And it certainly fits with Houtarou’s character. One thing about having this hyper, goofy, kind of carefree character is that it can be awesome having moments where they get serious. Like how Houtarou was in this episode. And also with his personality plus already seeing the scenes with his mama, we know he is very sincere in the scene with Rinne after she learns about her father.
So the scene really just hit all the marks from a character perspective. It of course helped to develop Houtarou’s relationship with Rinne. And make clear what they’ve been setting up regarding Papa Kudo and the emotions that Rinne is carrying inside of her.
Meanwhile, a couple more tidbits from Spanner and the interesting interactions he has with Rinne. Also a little scene with the not-twins Renge and Sabimaru. (Why do I feel like they should’ve just made them twins in the first place hehe). And also some tidbits from the Sisters, but just enough to keep them a lingering danger or threat without revealing everything about them now.
Overall, just a great episode. I feel good after watching Gotchard. I don’t know how to explain it. But it has a nice, homey feel to it. Like a comforting feel where I just enjoy watching it. Fun characters. Fun moments. Nice action.
So again, I just know they are lulling us into a false sense of security before they absolutely yank the rug out from under us for some emotional chaos later on. And I’m looking forward to it!