The Sisters are with Gurion and present him with the Neminemoon Chemy Card which he then combines with a doll of one of their older brothers who Atropos says was so disgusting and vile that he had to be contained. Adding in some gold, Gurion is able to manifest the Malgam Madwheel.
Gurion excuses himself to move on to his next experiment.
Minato-sensei walks into the dark classroom where he stumbles upon Gurion who is waiting for him. Gurion says it’s been a while since he’s visited here, though not much has changed. He still feels the brimming hope of youth and says Minato is the same save for being a professor now.
Over at Kitchen Ichinose, Houtarou and Mama Ichinose are serving Rinne, Renge and Sabimaru a special New Year’s dish. Houtarou, however, can’t help but think about the terrifying new enemy as well as the orange Gotchard.
Sabimaru takes a bite of the lotus root and it is very spicy. Renge asks Houtarou what he put in the dish, but Mama Ichinose sent him out on a delivery.
Houtarou stumbles upon the Magwheel Malgam on his delivery run and quickly henshins to take it on. But the Malgam is able to use the shadows to suck people in and to outsmart Houtarou.
Gotchard Daybreak arrives and is able to drive the Malgam away as it escapes into the shadows for some sleep. The orange Gotchard tells Houtarou that he is unable to defeat the Malgam as he is now as it was created by Gurion himself. The orange Gotchard warns that Houtarou will be in the middle of something terrible soon. And that he will lose faith in someone he trusts.
The orange Gotchard says Houtarou must choose between two options: Accept that future or fight against it. Either way, the moment truth will be upon them.
Elsewhere, Supana thinks about Houtarou’s performance as a Kamen Rider. But he has to catch Prof Kyoka when she collapses from hunger while working on her research. Supana gets her some food and she regains her strength.
Kyoka-san wants to give Supana a bite with some extra coriander, but he refuses. He says he is not a child anymore. She says he still is in her eyes. Supana looks at the scar on her arm and says it’s been ten years since she saved his life.
Kyoka-san says she raised him until he became an A-ranked alchemist. But she also roped him into this mess by having him investigate what the Union is covering up. Supana says he decided to do that of his own volition.
Kyoka-san tells Supana he must continue to keep an eye on Rinne in order to find Papa Kudoh and learn of the secret he took with him. She is sure he will reach out to his beloved daughter. Supana vows to find out who is responsible for the death of so many alchemists ten years ago. And in doing so, will be able to repay Kyoka-san for what she’s done for him.
Supana denies that he is in a slump though. She says he won’t be able to use the new Driver in his current state, especially when he is not like Houtarou. Supana asks if he needs to be more like him. But Kyoka-san says to just be himself.
Supana gets an alert and hurries downtown. But he runs into Minato-sensei who says they must talk.
Meanwhile, Houtarou finds Rinne, Renge and Sabimaru on the ground looking at shadows and hoping to find the sleeping Malgam. Rinne says she can’t use her alchemy yet, but she can still use a Card to fry the Malgam out. The Malgam hops out of the shadows, but just yawns at the sight of Houtarou.
Houtarou remembers the orange Gotchard’s words to him, but he will still give it a go against the Malgam. Houtarou henshins and they battle. Houtarou goes UFO-X and is able to save the people sucked into the shadows earlier. Rinne, Renge and Sabimaru help them get to safety.
But Houtarou is still struggling against the Malgam who sends an attack toward the other three. Orange Gotchard flies down from the sky to swat the attack away from them. He turns to Rinne and asks if she’s okay.
The Orange Gotchard powers up and takes on the Malgam. Houtarou refuses to give up though as he uphenshins to X-Rex. He delivers a Shining Fever finisher at the Malgam and it seems to blow it up.
However, the Malgam regenerates and says he’ll be back to kill Houtarou.
Orange Gotchard says I told ya so to Houtarou. He advises Houtarou to change himself if he is to change his future. The Orange Gotchard is about to tell Houtarou more, but they hear a commotion nearby. They run over to find Supana shooting at Minato-sensei, confident in his own skills. Houtarou remembers Mr. Orange’s warning earlier.
Minato-sensei demands the kids all hand over their cards. Supana screams not to do that as they will have their memories erased. Minato-sensei says what happened with Kugimiya was the last straw. After Level 10s have begun rampaging and high-ranking alchemists turn into Malgams, drastic measures have to be taken in order to maintain the natural order. That includes expelling them from the Academy for being such poor students and closing it for good. The responsibility of collecting Cards will be given to a new group of people.
The Meikoku Sisters suddenly coming walking up in alchemy uniforms.
Houtarou-tachi cannot believe what they are seeing. Houtarou tries to plead with Minato-sensei. But their former professor remains stoic and demands they hand over their rings and the cards in their possession.
Minato-sensei tells the Sisters to stand down and says he will handle this himself. He slaps on the Dreadriver and henshins. Supana henshins as well and they battle. But Minato-sensei is able to force Supana to dehenshin with a Dread Breaking finisher.
Minato-sensei collects Supana’s Cards and asserts that Supana will never be able to defeat him. Before Minato-sensei can take Supana’s ring, Sabimaru hands Supana a Card that can whisk them all away.
Gurion watches from the classroom while the Orange Gotchard surveys the city from the rooftop.
I whined about King-Ohger 43 feeling like one of those episodes that insert stuff from a movie most of us haven’t seen yet. And then here’s Gotchard Episode 17. Lol
At first, I was a bit annoyed during the opening credits and was all “Well, thanks for spoiling Rinne and Supana’s new Rider forms!” But then during the episode, they started seemingly referencing stuff that hadn’t happened yet. So then I became even more annoyed and realized, Oh great, this must all be from the movie! lol
And sure enough, the movie turns out to be quite consequential to the events of the series. A bit sad about that. But oh well.
I’ll have to set that aside for now and just go along with it all. And in doing so, I of course still enjoyed this episode a lot. It definitely feels like a new chapter in the story. And the mystery is definitely building up even more now.
The show is now focusing on big picture ideas. And that is good after having used the MOTW/humans of the week up to last episode to lay the groundwork for now exploring these season-long-type of big picture stories.
From the mystery of Houtarou’s past to the identity of Mr. Orange to whatever the Incident from ten years ago was and its profound effect on Supana to Minato-sensei now becoming a puppet of Gurion to the Sisters potentially being set up for a shocking betrayal in the future I think…
A lot of good teases for what’s to come in this next section of Gotchard. And this episode did a great job of laying out the pieces on the table and preparing us to start figuring out the puzzle in the episodes to come.
I will say though, the way I said “ewe” so loud when the Sisters came walking up in those uniforms. Lol They’re good villains for sure. And how awesome Houtarou-tachi have been to meet and root for, that scene was definitely one of those moments where, “Hey! How dare you!” lol You don’t deserve to wear those clothes! Lolol
It all adds to how fun and enjoyable the season has continued to be so far. And things are now getting even more exciting!