As Kotetsu talks with his daughter, Kaede on the phone she tells him to stop treating her like a kid and his mother goes on to tell him that it would be better if he was around more. Not that long after this Mr Lloyds pressures him to take some time off, and while Kotetsu doesn’t think it’s right to take a day off he thinks that Barnaby should be able to hold the fort for a few days.
So with his time off he plans to visit his daughter outside of Stern City and gives in to sales ploy for a particularly creepy stuffed toy known as a Mad Bear. Following this all the heroes are all shown happily spending their time off and after a night spent investigating possible leads Barnaby finds a face that matches the one from his dream, belonging to a now imprisoned criminal NEXT, Jake Martinez.
However as Kotetsu makes his way across the bridge he learns that a Mad Bear was the least Kaede wanted and if things couldn’t get any worse a bomb goes off on the bridge, stopping traffic completely as Kotetsu springs into action, to Kaede though this is to be expected he never keeps his promises. Since he was the closest Mr Lloyds calls him to tell him his time off has been canceled and when he calls Barnaby, Kotetsu tells him that he can count on him and to go ahead with meeting his parent’s killer. Once he’s changed into his suit Kotetsu finds himself and the other heroes against multiple powered suits. Taking one out however he finds that they’re manned by of all things, a Mad Bear which appears to have a mind of it’s own.
The others appear just as baffled as he is but things only get worse as a shady woman is shown manipulating the Mad Bears with her ability to orchestrate multiple bombings across Stern City, dividing the heroes into groups of two while Kotetsu handles things on the bridge. In the face of this everyone considers canceling the broadcast in case things don’t exactly pan out well, however due to the risk of the public losing faith in the heroes they continue. Eventually though the heroes find themselves pinned down and just as Origami Cyclone manages to get some rescue points, he’s smacked into the background. Back on the bridge though Kotetsu takes down powered suit after powered suit but prioritises saving a civilian with his wires. As the people watch the increasingly worsening situation they cheer the heroes on.
Reminded of how he leaped he leaped in front of him before, Barnaby decides to save his partner, even wondering if he’s lost weight and sure that Jake Martinez isn’t going anywhere. But just as they prepare to fight back to back the powered suits suddenly launch the Mad Bear’s heads into the air causing cards with Ouroboros’ symbol to rain from the sky as the woman from before hijacks the broadcast. Holding all of Stern City hostage as she demands the release of one of their comrades and if not they’ll crush the bottom level of the city under it’s own weight. Of course this comrade is none other than Jake Martinez, who inside his prison cell puts the finishing touches on something he’s been working on.
Initially I just expected this episode to focus on Kotetsu’s relationship with his daughter Kaede and how he hides what his real career is, but seeing Ouroboros hijack the episode and make their positions as the villains in the story known was a nice surprise. If anything I should have expected it, everyone was shown acting far too happy before hand.
As it doesn’t matter what way you look at it, in their line of work if the characters are all shown happily spending their free time doing the sorts of things they don’t really get a chance to do. Something big will happen to interrupt it all, as if they were taking it for granted, and Kotetsu finally being able to possibly spend time with his daughter was one such thing, I was expecting it to be interrupted but not before he could actually show up. Through this it was also good to get an understanding of just how Kaede views her father, we may know him as the veteran hero who’s always there to give fatherly advice, while to her he’s nothing more than the absent father who breaks every promise, treats her like a little kid, and has the nerve to try and buy her over with gifts. It’s kind of a shame but it has me hoping to see whether or not she’ll actually find out about who he really is and how she’ll take it. On the topic of Kaede’s character though I must also admit that I’m still surprised at how young Rina Hidaka is, she’s only like sixteen and has already handled a fair number of roles.
Other than that the action in this episode was pretty decent and the idea of having the powered suits/mechs piloted by the same sort of stuffed toy that Kotetsu had earlier picked up was kind of amusing, with one even appearing to taunt him and purposely fall off the bridge when he found out about it. There was also quite a bit of tension towards it, the heroes may have been able to hold them at the bridge but they soon found their forces continually divided as more attacked around the city. During all of this though it was fun to see Origami Cyclone/Ivan finally break out of the background to get some points by saving Scarf-tan and even have Blue Rose/Karina call Dragon Kid/Pao-Lin out on stealing points. Aside from that it was nice to see that things between Kotetsu and Barnaby were still going well as the latter chose to save the former when the opportunity to get to his parent’s killer was right in front of him.
If there was anything that the multiple attacks suggested it was that they weren’t just simple terrorist attacks, that there was someone or some group organising them, so for it to be used as Ouroboros’ proper entrance as the villains into the story was great this far in with fourteen to fifteen episodes left in the series. Not to mention that so far it’s thrown a few more villains into the story, for which Jake Martinez, voiced by Keiji Fujiwara looks like he’ll be a big one even if we were to forget about the connection he has with Barnaby. However if there was one thing that stood out about Ouroboros it was how grand their acts were, in order to pull them off they would need some serious financial backing, so perhaps of the members of the board that Lunatic/Yuri is on actually back them from the shadows.
Finally it was also interesting to see the short “pilot episode” that came with the first Bluray volume, what the team behind the show must have used by the staff to gain support early on in the development stage. Allowing us to see to what Karina, Kotetsu, and Barnaby looked like before their designs were finalised, and while the latter two remained mostly the same (only lacking their logos and a few colour changes), Karina and her Blue Rose outfit were quite different, almost as if she was freezing her hair. What stood out the most about it though was how it was all voiced in English, there may be tons of things that imply that everything is already in English but it just felt weird.