Now that her secret is out, Nagi makes it very clear to Hayate that Wataru isn’t her boyfriend, but rather her fiancé. Hayate figures out that Wataru is being adopted into the Sanzenin family as a son-in-law, but it turns out that Wataru actually thinks very poorly of Nagi. The two of them start fighting, and the commotion soon causes Isumi to come to see what’s going on. Wataru immediately gets embarrassed when he realizes that Isumi is here, and Maria explains to Hayate that Wataru actually likes Isumi. Nagi knows all about it and wants Isumi to fall for Wataru so that her engagement to him could be called off. The problem is that Isumi doesn’t have those feelings for Wataru, though Wataru notices that she does seem to like Hayate. Because of this, he challenges Hayate to a duel before breakfast. Nagi thinks that Hayate should beat Wataru up so that Isumi pities him, but Hayate decides to intentionally lose so that Isumi is impressed with Wataru instead. Unfortunately, he stops Wataru’s sword with two fingers and pretends to be defeated in such an obvious manner that Isumi figures out that he intentionally lost in order not to wound the pride of the violent Wataru. Despite Hayate attempting to deny this, the damage has been done and Wataru is in tears.
After Wataru runs off, Hayate feels that he needs to apologize and inquires where Wataru’s mansion is. It turns out that Wataru doesn’t live in a mansion, but rather at the top of the Tachibana Group’s building in Shinjuku. When Hayate says that it would be faster if he took the train instead of a car to get there, he finds out that Nagi hasn’t been on a train and that Maria thinks the Shinkansen is the only type of train. In other words, none of them seem to know about the subway. Nagi decides that she wants to ride the subway, so she and Isumi leave with Hayate for Wataru’s home. Unfortunately, Isumi disappears before they even get past the sidewalk outside the Sanzenin mansion, so Nagi and Hayate have to go looking for her. Nagi feels that Isumi is definitely at the most subway-like place she could be, and so she leads Hayate to some unknown underground location. She gets afraid down there because it’s dark, but her loud voice attracts a horde of rats and forces Hayate to run away with her. By chance, they pass by Isumi in the tunnel, and Isumi surprises them by warding off all the rats with a charm.
This adventure meant that Hayate’s attempt to apologize got delayed, but he eventually sets out again, this time with a package Nagi wants him to deliver to Wataru. Hayate manages to run into Saki in the middle of the city, and she leads him to the Tachibana Group building despite her aversion to being touched by him. This building, however, turns out to be just a video rental store tucked between two taller buildings. Wataru initially is angry that Hayate is here, but he soon realizes that Hayate is returning the video Nagi borrowed. Saki explains that the Tachibana Group is doing poorly, so all they have left is this rental chain. Wataru openly admits that his parents are after Nagi’s family’s fortune with the arranged marriage, but he personally wants to make this store great and create his own fortune; then even Isumi can like him. Hearing this, Hayate questions why Nagi wouldn’t just buy the videos instead of renting them since she’s so rich, so Wataru reveals that these are rare like a DVD of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann. Because of Wataru’s determination to surpass Nagi with the power of money, Hayate apologizes and decides to apply for a membership. Unfortunately, Wataru finds that Hayate is already a member courtesy of his father who owes the store 1.58 million yen. Thus, Hayate’s debt grows further.
Let’s see, there was also the obvious InuYasha reference, and I believe this was supposed to be a reference to the Patlabor Griffon. What else…. The title of this episode (Otoko no tatakai) is a reference to the title of episode 19 of Evangelion, and I saw references to The Law of Ueki and more InuYasha in the video tape shelf behind Hayate when he was talking with Wataru. There was also the reference to Sakura Taisen when Nagi was asking Hayate about the subway.
The highlight of the episode for me was either watching Saki’s antics as she tries to keep from being touched by Hayate or the unexpected InuYasha fight. I always thought Wataru was a bit of a crybaby after the fight scene, though he does redeem himself with his determination to make the video store great. Speaking of which, respect may be hard to come by for Hayate next week when he’s forced to dress up for Nagi in a girl’s school uniform and as a catgirl.