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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Ressha Sentai Toqger Episode 2 Review: IT'S TIME TO DU-DU-DU-DUEL!

Again I'm sorry for not covering much of Toqger even though I did start the episode reviews for this series. Now the big reason is that Godzilla was out and before that I was watching many Godzilla films, maybe next month I could just do Godzilla Month. Well with Toqger the show continues with the team finding out they are good as dead, but what does that mean?
Alright this episode was boring, I'm sorry I'm just getting it out of the way. How the episode starts is the team reacting to hearing Ticket saying they are good as dead. We don't need to focus on that aspect though as Wagon arrives... I can already hear Akiba Red falling in love with her and having problems dealing with that. Wagon easily reminds me of another female robot, Colon and I bet she won't be anything like her. High chance she is just going to be the coffee lady from Den-o as we get creepy shots of a female robot! It didn't happen yet, but I have seen screenshots of her and its just weird. I will say the voice actress is fine and can express her vocals well, but this was just a distraction. I know they are just teasing it, but tease us with something that is interesting, not guys eating lunch. At least Hikari starts to talk and discuss about the situation as he is not thinking positively. Hikari actually believes that they are good as dead since they have no memories other than the ones from their childhood. I will get to their explanation later, but first the team encounters the Shadow Line.
The Shadow Line is a way for the villains to spread their darkness and we do hear why they are doing it as well. The villains want to bring back their emperor as they must spread out darkness around the world. Then the darkness comes from human hearts so the monsters that are sent try to make the humans go into despair... sounds familiar. Well it's more than just despair as there is also anger, hatred, jealousy, etc.... The human heart can express some dark emotions and it is nice to see there can be many ways of getting that darkness. Wait a second; the villains are making humans express certain emotions, Kyoryuger?! This is not a good sign, not a good sign! Oh and the Kyoryuger similarities don't stop here as that express train just continues on. Anyways the idea of getting darkness is similar to Kyoryuger, but one episode did something more interesting than the whole previous series with that concept.
Last time the monster just stole children and made them cry and high chance the parents were in distress as well. This plan is much more extreme and I love that. The monster makes a part of town take part in duels. Before you make your Yu-Gi-Oh references, I already made one with the title so I win in that race even though I am reviewing this episode way after it aired, damn I lost. Either way this isn't a card duel, it's straight up face your partner and try to take them down with what you got. Most of the people have a weapon that belongs to the grunts. People hit the floor as well and they're not dead even though some got shot... I will say this was a bit of a little surprise as I would love to see the heroes forced to duel as they just find a way around it since the concept of duels can go other ways. Still the suffering people in pain and the people who hurt them start to feel bad as the darkness starts to fill the air. Also for a fun little effect, the monster throws a coin that grows giant and crushes the ground.
After the duel it seems people get punished for not dueling so the monster sees five people not doing it so he sends the grunts after them. We get the first fight as it reminds me of the first climax fight. The team just keeps their guard up, but this time they use more of their standard weapons. The sword can transform into a gun as well which is common ground that has been covered before in other series. Right also uses the Scope Ressha for his gun, so there are more than just the transformation Resshas. Scope is pretty basic as I bet there will be others like that, maybe there will be Stab or Slash Resshas for the sword functions. Then we get another switch around with the colors and then the unique weapons are used then. It's interesting to see how they fight with different weapons in the first episode and it's still nice to see now. Sadly they just play the old cards again as the whole strong girl running gag is going to get annoying, oh wait it is annoying!
Then we start to see more of Kyoryuger signs as Right for some reason thinks to be fast he needed to take back his Red Ressha and go back to his normal color just to defend a kid from the MOTW. So Right hogs the spotlight in his red colors and they easily could have had him in pink. I like the gimmick so why didn't the show try to break a little traditional ground with that. I would love to see saving the day be done with other colors than red. Right ends up in a tight pinch and to give him credit he did get a smart moment. The monster is punishing cowards for not fighting, but Right says that him and the others are new here and didn't know. Then the monster actually agrees with him and just leaves. That got a little chuckle out of me I will agree. So Right was right again. There was another moment with Right being right as Green brings up the issue about being good as dead. This is because the kid mentions it since the city will be destroyed by the darkness. Hikari goes on saying how all of them cannot remember other memories except the ones they share together which is pretty much being good as dead.
To my surprise, Hikari is the silent type and yet he is expressing more intelligence than Blue who is supposed to be the smart one. Literally Blue didn't get that good as dead is probably a metaphor. Hikari is also the one who is thinking realistically as he says he cannot imagine baseless things. He gets mad at Right for just moving forward and not worrying about the situation. The five of them don't have a past or future as they just ride on a train for the rest of their lives. He even says they might as well be ghost on a phantom train and then Right loves that idea. Right makes a metaphor then with the idea of certain ghosts returning to their home as he promises that they will get home. Everyone seems to agree except for Hikari, but Yellow stops him for a moment because it's pointless when Right is like this. I have to say for people who used to be friends they sure aren't acting like it. Maybe it's been a while and yes friends still do fight with each other, but I really don't feel any strong bonds between themselves. Really just being childhood friends doesn't help that much as they are older now and can be completely different people later on.
Hikari then breaks his smarts up during the next fight as the team start talking to him that Right is right. Well in the sense that he keeps the team moving on and he can go too far and drag others around, there can be some people to keep them grounded. Wait how is this a good thing? Right just goes on without thinking and could put people in danger, but it's alright because they are a team. This is the opposite of a team, the leader should be the one to keep them grounded and not the other way around and yes the others can help with this since leaders can lose their touch, but Right seems like he will never have it. Also Hikari says that they do exist... wait he didn't even understand that good as dead is just a metaphor? They have been talking with other people in this episode so why would they think they are even ghosts or non-existing beings.
We then get to Red fighting solo against the MOTW as it's a duel! To make things interesting the two take their duel on their trains and it's a CGI fest! Now to give some credit there are actually some shots of actual props of train models being used, but if they want to use the models at least have them in most of the scene. There is a way of doing this as camera tricks exist for a reason to make it seem that they are on top of a train. Now they did have to use the CGI when the tracks went into a loop and then the trains went in circles so Red and the monster did have to jump when they ran out of train to run on. It was a bit fun to watch and having Green help Red doesn't remind me of Kyoryuger and Red did mess up as Green had to save him, so hooray for teamwork! There was an actual funny moment in this episode as the monster messes up when the train goes into a tunnel as he had his swords up in the air. This causes his swords to break and then Red finishes him off. It was unexpected which is good for humor and seeing the monster mess up and just go "Oh..." was a nice reaction. Sadly the mech fight was pointless as it's a gun duel and that's it. The monster does the backstabbing tactic like usual and I do like how the mech separates to avoid the bullets and then it just shoots the monster down, fight over.
This episode was just boring in general as there are only little moments when I laughed and then there were some moments I was just confused. To make things worse the final scene confirms that the heroes could be survivors from a city that got destroyed by the darkness which is why they don't have their own memories, but Ticket says it's incorrect, it wasn't funny and at first I thought they were trying to not give answers again. The only parts I did like was involved with the MOTW for this episode as the duels he made people go through is rather extreme to get dark emotions. Other than that the heroes were boring and Right is making me think he's not a good leader as he just stays as a man-child. I give the episode a D+ as at least the series still had some interesting parts with the action and the monster was more entertaining than the actual heroes.
Next Time: Pink gets the spotlight... Oh god no


  1. Just wondering if the series never picks up, will you still review it?

    1. Of course, I can go through bad shows. I have seen far worse in general and sat through them more than once.

  2. Just a bit of information but the only Reassha the standard weapons get is the Scope Ressha

    1. Wow that seems pointless now

    2. It's actually used for both sword and gun modes

    3. Well that's an odd choice I would say, how does Scope work with a sword?