Ultraman Blazar ep 2 Review: Fishing For SKaRD!

After an action-packed debut, Ultraman Blazar return with a light-hearted episode to wind down from the intense monke action. We see the formation of SKaRD and establish the new team. But that doesn’t mean we don’t get some eye-candy ultra vs kaijuu. We got some comedic cooldown moments on the first half and engaging action on the latter.

I find the first minutes of the episode tense and amusing. Just the thought of Gento getting called by the chief of staff, Retsu Haruno, right after Bazanga operation while still looking beat up is quite relatable to me. It’s like when you’re done with your essay assignment and then asked by your teacher to revise everything that’s wrong with it. Also, the way they depict the Ultra as a gray entity instead of a hero who saves the day is interesting to me. While Ultra generally saves the day from a Kaiju, they’re still a giant being, so they could still be destructive in nature (as in, they could accidentally destroy some buildings). That’s why they still need to be investigated.

The opening is like what I expected from one of JAM Project’s member, Hiroshi Kitadani. Sounds so hype and blood-pumping just like what Masaaki Endoh did back in Ultraman Z. Speaking of Ultraman Z, its visual also gives me Ultraman Z vibes a bit. Is it because both of them are Taguchi-directed works?

This moment onwards focuses more on the forming of SKaRD. They made this part fast-paced with scene with one member jumping to another scene with another member, but still comfortable to follow along. Throughout this part we see the more casual side of each SKaRD member, which is really fun to watch. From Gento and Emi fighting on who should pay the bill, the awkwardness when Teruaki and Anri about to sign their paper, until the whole bit when Gento trying to find the last member, Yasunobu Bando, with how they scream every time they talk since it was so noisy there and Gento’s frustration to the chief of staff when the file given to him is outdated. Also, I like the fact that the members chosen by the chief of staff have relations to the Bazanga operation. Emi is the one who shot the Kaiju right at its weak point, Teruaki is part of the air support team, and Anri was listening to Gento’s actions from the comms.

These minor but fun to watch moments can also be found in the scene inside the SKaRD CP. From, the squad pointing out how all the budget for the team are all invested in the arsenal, Anri trying to mimic Emi by responding to command with “Wilco” but can’t, and Teruaki’s overreacting whenever something is sunk by the Kaiju. Gento also has his own moments, namely when he’s doing his paperwork and also push-ups while waiting for Teruaki’s updates, as well as him stressing out but still keeping it cool after being ordered to deploy by chief Haruno, despite the lack of personnel, weapons, and proper training. These moments give the casts more character and shows us what antics we could expect from them

The attack on Kaiju scene is still engaging and fun to watch as ever, whether it is the human part or the Ultra part. The human scene still carries the military protocol from last episode but not that intense with some wacky moments here and there (see the pattern here? It’s all about fun moments in this episode). One thing that I like to point out is how well Emi blends in with the fishermen as a member who specialized on gathering intel. She’s there complete with matching outfits and everything as well as having a natural interaction with them. Also, the way Gento contacting Emi while reading a manual on how to set up his new gear is interesting to me. When Gento arrives on the scene, the squad still waiting while analyzing for Kaiju’s weak spot, and the way they show it when the weak point is found is a bit… yeah… It looks like the Kaiju is farting.

Once the Kaiju’s weak point is found, it’s time for Gento to spring into action, after repping his catchphrase, “I’ll go (I’ve got this in EN dub)”. On the way to approaching the Kaiju, Gento saw an old man who seemingly has a lot of balls charging in to the Kaiju with a harpoon. I find the way Gento advise the old man to retreat quite casual and not too formal, which makes his character more grounded as a captain. Of course, when the Kaiju approaches them, the old man lost his consciousness. That’s when the Blazar Stone when hot and Blazar Brace appears on Gento’s hand. This is an interesting way to make Gento transform immediately. I assume this is Blazar going, “Dude, the old man fainted and the port is getting wrecked, let me out now!”. So, the trigger for Blazar to appear is when Gento is with people he just saved and them losing consciousness? Because, this is also what happened last episode. Thus, Gento put in the stone in the brace to transform, only to forget the other crucial step, pressing the button on the darn thing. Seriously, little moments like these that make this episode enjoyable.

The highlight starts now, as the rise sequence of Blazar starts. Speaking of that, it looks really good. The way the spherical light show from the DX Brace appears in the sequence is a nice touch. Another thing that I like to point out is how Blazar starts out without his red and blue lines at the start of the sequence. Blazar’s fight goes as hard and primitive as ever but with a faster pace than last episode. In fact, it’s so fast that the fight ends without Blazar’s color timer turning red. There are several things that I want to highlight here. When Blazar is running towards the Kaiju while dodging the laser, The Matrix style, shows what I like about Blazar’s fighting style, primitive yet agile. Next one is when Emi and Anri assisting Blazar when he’s strangled by the Gedos’ “head-tentacle-thingy”. Civilians assisting the heroes in fighting the monster is a nice sight for me, as long as they are really helping of course.

Lastly, the part that I want to talk about in length is what I like to dub “Gedos Fishing Session”. Blazar sends out his Spiral Burrade and turn it into a fishing rod complete with the bait at the end of string part. I find it amusing how Gedos fail for that bait, as it doesn’t even resemble any fish at all. The finishing strike is what sends me laughing, is when Blazar managed to fish out Gedos out of the sea, he skewered the darn thing as if it is a grilled fish. Yep, grilled fish special made by Chef Blazar. The fight ends, Blazar flies off leaving a red and blue trail.

On the last scene, we’re introduced to the last member of SKaRD, Yasunobu Bando, who is together with chief Haruno, and the giant mech used in this series, the Earth Garron. After that, chief Haruno gave his official order to SKaRD to eradicate the Kaiju faster than Blazar. This is an interesting take on Ultra and military dynamic for me. Instead of them working together, the military organization decides to have a competition with the Ultra on who can finish a Kaiju faster. Maybe this is to prove that they don’t need an outside force to deal with the Kaiju. Of course, the time will come when chief Haruno opens up to the Ultra and make the military force works together with the Ultra, right? Regardless, I’m looking forward for the next episode where we will see Earth Garon’s action.

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