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Monday, January 28, 2013

Kamen Rider Wizard Episode 19 Review: The Roar of the Beast

In this episode of Wizard things get rather tricky, during the struggle Beast kidnaps the Gate and the Phantom gets away. Will Kousuke finally learn what happens to the Gates when a Phantom appears and when he does will he let his own life on the line for much longer?
Going on with Kousuke he does learn the truth and he is still at a struggle. Even with not knowing fully he never wanted to kill the Gate since all he wants is the Phantom. His life is on a thread and everyday he lets time pass by he could die anytime. I talked about this in the past review where he is on a neutral side of the battle. He only fights for his life cause of Crimea and there is the fact he doesn't know anything about the other Mages and the fight between the Phantoms. He does go with the better side of things and decides to help the group to save the Gate. By the end of the episode, Shunpei thought of a good idea regarding Crimea. Since it's a Phantom it can be defeated and Haruto can use Engage to actually confront it. Haruto tries to give him the Engage Ring, but Kousuke rejects the offer cause it's weird to get a ring from a guy and he wants to keep his inner beast. The last thing is that Kousuke still calls Haruto his rival since I bet he will not hold back when things get serious for him. So he is still on the side of good, but will still take much bigger steps for his own life. Again Kousuke is a friendly rider like Date, but has the tones that many anti-hero riders have. Overall I am happy with his character cause of these mixed ideas and somewhat reminding me of Godai (Kuuga).
Now for the main character and how he dealt with this huge issue. From the last episode he was getting ticked off and that part of him did stay. Again their ideals were clashing and thanks to Haruto it made Kousuke fight for good. Kousuke is live or die, but Haruto puts other lives before his. This is very memorable since it's very similar to the original Kamen Rider who fought with a power he was forced to have. He has to fight the Phantoms as he is now used to it and wants to protect people ever since that incident in his past. Another thing is that this is completely a switch compared to the last rider series, Fourze. Gentaro was the man who was brought into the action and didn't bring much twists to the series. While Meteor was the more complex character and now Haruto is complex with Kousuke being more simplistic. So far I am very happy how the riders are interacting with each other as I can't wait to see how much they can do together.
We did get more focus on the Gate in this episode as he was a nice character. I was hoping more for his story to be similar to the situation. He is a very depressing guy though who lives alone as he can only find his wife in a painting he made. What this is similar to is Rinko's story with her connection to her father. They only have something close to them to remember them. In a way I think the series is already making callbacks to itself which is nice. Now this does kill some of the uniqueness for this Gate, but he wasn't the main focus for the episode. Now a part I bet people will hate is when Haruto didn't show the letter to the man when he just found it, but I think he kept it for when the worse happens. The man was saved from despair thanks to Kousuke, but he was still freaking out. I think Haruto would have gave it to him when things were safe. So this wasn't the best Gate, but there were episodes like this before where the Gate's part of the story isn't the main purpose.
Onto our Phantom who was still unnamed like some past ones. This plant guy actually got the jump on the heroes which I loved. Usually he jumped into the scene hoping to just get him, but that failed twice. When he found out that both Mages were around already he stayed in the shadows and learned about the Gate. A good approach for a Phantom to do as this guy adapted to the situation. More importantly the new Phantom was in the background watching Wizard fight. For some reason I can tell he is not following certain orders from Medusa since we never seen him meet up with her yet. He could be working with Wiseman though since he just gave Wizard new powers. He easily catches my interest since he could be with Wiseman or on his own, but why?
He reminds me of when Enter (from Go-busters) was actually a good villain
Onto the fighting now and boy we got two big reveals. First was Wizard changing into the Land Dragon Styles and I really like this form. It could be my favorite of the Dragon forms since the color scheme is very different compared to past designs. The darker yellow really works when it's the most noticeable color and I really love the claws he gets. They are an actual prop and now I am not saying the other parts made with effects are bad, but I do love seeing a prop look very convincing. With this new form Wizard also gains the Gravity ring as I love attacks like that. It's a strong spell that holds the enemy down to the ground, now I do wonder if Wizard can change the gravity to be lighter or harder. Then Beast got to summon Chimera for the first time in the Underworld and it is very different from Wizard's Dragon. Chimera is more basic as Beast just rides on him without a machine. The fight was very good as the inner Phantom looked very impressive and I love how it could split into more bats. Then the finisher were great as Chimera can use beams from all the mouths and make a magic head appear to chomp on his foes. The claw finisher from Wizard was okay as it was just a basic slash finisher, but what do you expect from Claws. Another great part of the action was Kousuke doing out of suit action as the actor did his own stunts. It was short, but I always like seeing actors doing more than just acting.
This is just another great episode as the series keeps giving me things to love. If the series really keeps up like this it will easily be in my top five. Wizard keeps it's past methods and is adding more comedic value thanks to the secondary rider which is usually the opposite compared to when other secondaries appear. This episode poked at some very good ideas and used them well as the action was at a very high point. Then I really enjoyed the scenes with Kousuke since he starts to learn things now and works to redeem himself. The Gate wasn't that unique, but the main purpose for this episode was to have Beast be on the heroes' side. I easily give this episode an A.
Next Time: Phoenix?


  1. Well, it was a damn sight better than last week's episode (which was awful I tell you). But I still wouldn't give it higher than a B+.

    One thing that I noticed but that they failed to mention in the episode is that Kousuke can sustain himself by eating the beasts INSIDE of the gates. Contrary to what Medusa implied, he will NEVER run out of food if he doesn't let gates become Phantoms. He can just enter them using the Engage ring! So all he has to do is find a way to seek out more gates!

    Also, I thought the Phantom this week was a sea anemone...but I guess he could be a plant. He's got find and what looks like an anemone's base in his back, but he also has fins and what look like seeds in him. Could go either way I suppose.

    Bah. I don't like what they did with Chimaira's name. He's clearly a Chimera. So why did they go with ki-ma-i-ra instead of ki-me-ra? It's a direct transliteration ffs. They didn't mess with the names of any of the other mythical creatures on the show. Phoenix, Medusa, Dragon, Unicorn, Cerberus, and Kraken are all as-is. What gives? It sounds dumb.

  2. Well I think the inner phantoms can only come out when they are released by the despair of their owner. Because every time a rider has went into the underworld was when a Gate was in despair. This leads the cracking in their underworld which releases the inner Phantom. Also for the Chimera it's just Japanese spelling turned into English.

  3. Then more thing is that I still liked the last episode because of the callbacks they used and mixed it around with the new ideas of this series. Even though the action was lacking that really only controls like the "-", the neutral, or the "+" of the episode unless it's right down terrible with so many flaws like bad effects or when the props wear out or get loose. Fourze had this errors and so did Double, but those were so little that it barely affected the episode. I know these series are action, but I always put plot first.

  4. I always put plot first too. I had serious objections to last week's plot. Kousuke acted like a complete imbecile, they used lazy storytelling techniques to rush his backstory, and completely ignored the characterization of the Gate or the Phantom of the week. As much as I enjoy the action in Wizard, it's second fiddle (unless it's really bad, as was the case in many Ryuki episodes).

    As for the Chimaira thing, I'm not talking about how TVN handled the name. I mean how the JAPANESE handled it. They could have directly transliterated it as "ki-me-ra", which is exactly how Chimera is spelled and mostly how it is pronounced. Instead they used an 'ai' sound in the middle...which sounds very strange indeed if you know what it's supposed to be.

    1. Then I go back to what I said in my last review, Kousuke didn't know everything about the situation. Just cause someone is a monster doesn't make them fully evil. How his backstory was handled was much like Gentaro from Fourze. He just comes into the story and uses powers to fight the villains. It establishes how Kousuke is not connected to many things, but this shows us that magic is much older and there are remnants around. Then again I bet Toei just made a little fun name more marketing and for the kids.