Tiger & Bunny 14

Ten months on from defeating Jake and saving the city the Tiger & Bunny duo give an interview about how prominent they’ve become in the rankings, with Barnaby taking 1st place and Kotetsu 4th at the end of the previous season. As the other heroes watch this during one of their training sessions, Karina is pissed for some reason.

Shoot, and another Figuart sells out in an insanely short space of time.

New Opening Theme:

“Missing Link” by NOVELS, download.

And as she denies the idea that she likes Kotetsu she gets a call from Agnes about a compilation show with Tiger and Bunny, of course she will also have to teach them how to dance for it. So because of this the three of them rehearse the routine together and just as they arrive, Mr Lloyds appears to have a totally different opinion of Kotetsu, considering him to be more of a commodity than  a spare hero.

Following this Karina looks back on it and wonders if it’s love as she talks with her friends at school, wondering if she really likes him after what he’s done, and while they reassure her that it isn’t it’s just their way of telling her to be more honest with herself and making sure things work out. During their later rehearsals Kotetsu still appears to be one step behind, and when he decides to take a break Barnaby assures her that he did this for them as well along with that he’s the type of guy who thinks more about others and will come through for them in the end. And just in case she didn’t believe this, when Kotetsu comes back he gives her a towel to replace the one he wrecked.

When they’re alone he also asks if she’s free later but it’s just so they can get some extra practice in, and as she later heads home some  heroes are shown chasing after a the same guy that Apollon intended to have fill in for Barnaby earlier. These heroes happen to be in a secondary league to the main characters which handles the minor crimes, and aside from providing security for the show they also happen to be chasing after a backstage thief. And while they all look up to Kotetsu and Barnaby, Antonio feels slightly left out for being the lowest ranking hero, but Kotetsu reassures him it’s just because they couldn’t recognise him. Following this the backstage thief sneaks into Karina’s dressing room just as the show’s about to start using his ability of invisibility and as the show goes on without a hitch, they find out afterward that he stole her bag and with it the towel Kotetsu gave her. So due to this they team up with the secondary heroes to catch the thief.

Soon after this Kotetsu, Barnaby, and Karina manage to get a lead on him with Kotetsu using his ability first to chase after him while Barnaby and Karina follow behind. During this he’s able to recognise the thief from before who blames him for putting him on this path, of course it really has nothing to do with him, and as he chases after him something strange happens to Kotetsu. The amount of power he has somehow increases but at the cost of the amount of time he has to use it being cut back, however even though the thief escaped his grasp because of this, Rock Bison appears at the end of the tunnel to hit him like a brick wall.

With the thief caught Barnaby and Karina think that Kotetsu let him get away so that Antonio/Rock Bison could regain his confidence and Karina tells him that she’ll treasure the towel, and when he and Antonio go on to their usual bar he wonders whether his powers could be evolving.

New Ending Theme:

“Mind Game” by Tamaki, download.

Next Episode:

Looks like Sky High may finally get his episode.

Thoughts:

There may have been a time skip but I was slightly disappointed to see things overall take a backseat to Karina’s infatuation with Kotetsu, I still like her/Blue Rose and through things like the return of certain fill in character and Antonio/Rock Bison being given a chance to shine it still turned out to be an all right episode. But I think it could have been toned down a bit.

It’s just the sort of thing that hasn’t really played much of a role in the series so far and because of that I also think that it managed to slightly benefit from it being that way, but most of all I just found the idea of Karina liking Kotetsu in this sort of way kind of weird and tacked on because he’s the main character and her the main heroine. There were signs to suggest it and quite a few things that have led to it but with the way Kotetsu treats her, their relationship seems more towards one between a father and daughter than anything romantic. And I don’t really expect it to head in that direction either, Kotetsu just doesn’t comes across as someone who would be interested, he still keeps pictures of his wife around that we’ve seen him occasionally look at after all. Despite that however, given the way that Karina could be considered the main heroine and third in line as the protagonist after Kotetsu and Barnaby (she was the only one besides them who appeared in the pilot), I think it’s still possible that things could head in that direction, slightly.

On the side of all of this I also liked how Antonio/Rock Bison finally got his chance to shine, even if it was just for a moment. Being one of the few heroes that still haven’t had an episode devoted to him he easily comes across as the character who’s been getting the short end of the stick. Let alone now that Kotetsu’s moved up and Ivan/Origami Cyclone has started acting as a hero should, he now sits at the bottom of the rankings. He just hasn’t really got a lot going for him at the moment, his sponsor was even considering firing him if he didn’t manage to turn things around. So I liked how in the end he was able to save the day and still with quite a few episodes to go I really hope he gets an episode focused around him, as even Sky High looks to be getting one next week.

Other than that I also liked how things have somehow turned around for Kotetsu, at the start of the series he was a veteran on his way out of the business but now he’s managed to turn things around, now sitting in a safe position and having quite a few fans. More notably even Mr Lloyds doesn’t regard him as a throwaway hero now, he used to threaten him that he would fire him but now he’s at his beck and call whenever he considers quitting, it’s a nice reversal of roles to see that Apollon’s gamble has paid off and they not only have the only duo but through their combined efforts, two of the most successful heroes. However while all of these things may have been a lot of fun to see what was probably the most interesting thing in the episode would have had to be Kotetsu’s power up, earlier I had speculated that Jake’s two abilities could mean a look towards the origin of NEXTs and because of that I hope we’re able to further see into it. I’m just wondering what could possibly trigger this change, both Jake and Kotetsu are fairly old so it could possibly be a further mutation of their original one that’s developed over time. However it still doesn’t remain clear so I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Finally it was also interesting to see a new opening and ending theme in this episode, the ending theme doesn’t really come across as all that much and I kind of prefer the old one but it’s still fairly nice how it shows all the heroes hanging out together and still shots with a bit of text about them. The opening theme however I think easily managed to overshadow it, working as an overall step up from the previous one as far as the animation is concerned while building up Lunatic as the possible final boss. Most of all though the thing that I’m interested in the most is how it suggests that Kaede will figure out her father’s secret by having her flick through Kotetsu’s phone, it’s something that I’d really like to see at some point as well as whether she’s starting to develop her own NEXT ability.

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