RAINBOW: Nisha Rokubou no Shichinin – 20
After twenty weeks of K-ON and RAINBOW on Tuesdays, the two series are having an identity crisis all of a sudden. K-ON brought the emotion-filled tears with its take on the school festival, while RAINBOW brought the laughs with Kyabetsu’s search for a job that suits him. What the heck!? More specifically, it was all about Baremoto coming up with scams where Kyabetsu sells shoddy products, which backfired due to either the latter’s stupidity or his inability to control his strength. Comedy-wise, those failures were complete with timely pauses and goofy expressions. Amazingly, the jokes weren’t the only surprise this episode, as I thought Kyabetsu would be in way over his head for joining the yakuza, yet he somehow wins them over with his innocent kindhearted personality. What the heck number two!
Granted, the only reason Kyabetsu was in the Shonan reform institute to begin with was because of assault charges linked to drinking, which for all we know could have just been an inadvertent backhand with that superhuman strength of his behind it. Still, we’re talking about real Japanese gangsters who generally don’t let you waltz in and mess up without any consequences. If the intention here was to emphasize that Aritou truly is a chivalrous yakuza though, I’d say that it worked wonders in that department. His calm and composed demeanor as the young head of the Fukumoto Gang already commanded respect when he entered the room last time, whereas him lending Mario and the others one of their cars made him seem much better than Naoko compassion-wise. His decision to assign Tanaka (Furuya Tooru!!) to look over Kyabetsu turned out to be another kind act as well, since his subordinate isn’t nearly as bad as he looks.
Right from the get-go, it was pretty apparent that Aritou opposed the idea of having Mario, Suppon, and Kaybetsu join their gang since they didn’t seem suited for organized crime work. As such, I suspect he instructed Tanaka to get Kyabetsu to do miscellaneous cleaning chores around the residence to determine exactly what kind of person he is. I’d even go so far as saying Aritou intended to eventually tell Kyabetsu that he’s not suited to be a yakuza and get him to leave for his own good, had things not been suddenly thrown out of whack by a random attack from some deranged guy with a vendetta against the Fukumoto Gang. However, it was at that point that things started feeling like RAINBOW again, particularly with the way Mario was out to avenge Kyabetsu had he actually died in a gang war. Incidentally, Mario showed that he was probably the most suited to become a yakuza, by not flinching in the face of his own knife that Tanaka drew on him and exuding a willingness to throw everything away to avenge his friend.
In any case, I gather Tanaka only told Mario that Kyabetsu is working as a professional wrestler after seeing what kind of friend he is, since he and Aritou are probably the only ones in the gang who know Kyabetsu wasn’t killed off for calling an ambulance and the police to the Fukumoto residence. It wasn’t said specifically, but Aritou hinted at the very end that he reported Kyabetsu was killed for his act of stupidity, when he actually spared his life for helping save Tanaka’s and hooked him up with job in a manly line of work where he can eat all he wants. In short, we have a surprise happy ending all in one episode involving yakuza. If someone had told me that’s what I’d be in store for here, I would’ve called bullshit on them right away. I won’t lie and say I didn’t appreciate a swift turn for the better though. It’ll be interesting to see if we’ll see something wrap up as quickly next arc, as Baremoto’s one about a woman he’s fallen blindly in love with is coming our way.