The beginning of the battle between Behemoth and Kogarasumaru. Kogarasumaru enters the arena and are split up into their respective cubes. Onigiri, Kazuma, Buccha, Ikki and Agito face the Gorgon Bombshell, Iron Clock, Hecatonkheir Bomb, Cyclops Hammer and Super Beast respectively.
The episode focuses primarily on Buccha and Kazuma. Buccha struggles (loss) and Kazuma loses.
Since the blog started just a couple of days ago, I’ve already watched episodes 1-16. . thus resulting in no opinions of those at the moment, lol. I’ll have a post covering 1-16 in a few days anyways.
On the topic of Air Gear’s Episode 17, this episode marks the start of the battle between Udou’s Behemoth and Ikki’s Kogarasumaru.
More… The Behemoth arena is located in an old abandoned factory. Since Ikki challenged Behemoth, the battle takes place here in a Class-D Cube instead of Agito’s desired dash setup. As each member travels down the paths of pipes, each pipe branches off to a separate opening (cube) where a member of Behemoth awaits. Right off the bat, Onigiri dashes for an opening with flaring nostrils. As expected, his opponant turns out to be none other than Gorgon Shell Ryo Mimasaka, the only female member of Behemoth’s elite.
I guess we can’t expect anything less from the most perverted member of Kogarasumaru afterall eh? The battle begins with Gorgon Shell stripping off her clothes. Little of this battle is revealed in episode 17, however, we can assume that the her strategy involves enticing male opponents with her beauty and “sexiness.” This is the second time a female skater has capitalized on her looks as a weapon, lol.
Following Onigiri’s actions, Kazuma and Buccha both enter their own portals to meet their opponents.
Buccha continues to become stuck in the tunnel pathway and we are treated with a cut of his opponent going at him. Kazuma also enters his cube to find it empty. Suddenly, the video of the battle cuts to a rolled up Buccha. The announcer, thinking that it is a Behemoth victory, rewinds the video to find an equally damaged Hekatonkheir Bomb Goshogawara Fuumei. We are then brought into a flashback during the training period prior to the battle. Agito had discussed strategies with each member of the team and explicitly stated that Buccha, due to his girth and strength, may be the only member who can withstand Hekaton’s attacks.
With this, Buccha takes Hekaton to their cube where Hekaton reawakens and begins attacking Buccha with a renewed vigor. It turns out that Hekaton’s limbs are unnaturally long, allowing him to whip opponents from a long distance. Buccha is pushed back, but also fights back with a punch (ah, the laws of shounen).
Kazuma, on the other hand, cannot see his opponent besides being in the cube. It turns out that his opponent is also a speed-based skater by the name of Iron Clock Sano Yasuyoshi. Kazuma is initially baffled by the Clock’s abilities. As a result, we are treated once again to a flashback of the pre-battle training. In contrast to Agito’s advice to Buccha, Agito provides no advice to Kazuma and simply assumes that he will be defeated soundly. The truth behind the Clock’s ability is rather simple however. Due to his speed, he is able to create the illusion of stopped time and literally disappear from his opponant’s sight.
Kazuma, begins running and disappears from the cube as well. The Clock’s speed is still too overwhelming, resulting in Kazuma recieving various blows. The blood from Kazuma’s wounds creates trails all over the cube, allowing him to locate the Clock by viewing the blank spots on the walls. The two trade blows, but Kazuma is eventually overpowered. We learn from Spitfire that the Clock was actually the former King of the Flame Road. In defeat, Kazuma still displays his fighting spirit with none other than… yep, a middle finger.
While all this is going on, Ikki and Agito continue on into the tunnel. They reach a fork and both depart on their ways to meet their opponents. Ikki faces Cyclops Hammer Bandou Mitsuru while Agito faces his nemesis (current holder of Agito’s Fang Road Regalia) and leader of the Behemoth: Super Beast Udou Akira.
Let me first take a minute to express that I am quite impressed by how the anime follows the manga version. Granted that there are subtle changes, the general story (as well as art) has followed the manga surprisingly well.
All in all, this episode provides the beginning to yet another one of Kogarasumaru’s battles with a team that obviouslly outclasses them. Similar to Ikki’s former battle with Buccha, Kogarasumaru will probably initially struggle, yet prevail through some manner or form.
I have to say though, I’m interested in seeing…
(MANGA SPOILER: Kazuma as the Flame King. It’s ironic how in this instance, we have the past, present and future Flame Kings all gathered in one location. END SPOILER)
Even so, we need more Simca and Ringo. @_@ The next episode will provide their time anyhow, so I suppose there’s no need to rant about this.
I personally thought that this episode was pretty good. It’s nice to finally get treated to some heated battling once again. I thought that Onigiri’s reactions to Gorgon Shell were hilarious (the result is even more bizarre), but Buccha and Kazuma were obviously showcased in this episode. I personally like the character of Kazuma, since he obviously grows from Ikki’s shadow in the beginning of the series to take a much larger role later on in the story. My only question involving the series is… what the heck happened to the Welcome to Nightmare wind regalia that Ikki got way earlier in the series? I guess we’ll find out later.
Episode Rating: B+