Instead of himself fighting Hayate, Azumamiya Koutarou calls in his butler Nonohara Kaede to do the work. To Hayate’s surprise though, Nonohara starts out by kicking his own master and beating up on him because he doesn’t like to be relied on by a weak man who does nothing. When Hayate questions if it’s okay for a butler to act like that, Himuro explains that it’s a butler’s duty to guide their master in the right direction, and he points out that that’s the reason Hayate had been trying to teach Nagi the joys of sports. It is ultimately Hinagiku who steps in to stop Nonohara from smacking Koutarou with a shinai because she feels that she has to help a troubled student as the student council president. However, Koutarou now understands that he can’t be weak, so he decides to challenge Nagi to a kendo match since he believes that a master should fight a master and a butler should fight a butler. Nonohara actually approves of this way of thinking, but since Nagi can’t fight, Hinagiku decides to fight for her. Thus, the battle becomes Hinagiku and Hayate versus Koutarou and Nonohara.
Hinagiku ends up defeating Koutarou fairly easily, but Hayate has quite a hard time against the extremely powerful Nonohara who has his special fire-based attacks. Hinagiku is very surprised when Hayate and flames get blown past her, so Himuro explains that first class butlers have super-deadly techniques at their disposal. Hayate is quite impressed by Nonohara’s ability, but he knows that he can’t learn such techniques in the short time that he has, leaving him at a disadvantage. What does help Hayate is Himuro suddenly mentioning overlooking garbage, which causes Hayate to realize something just in time for him to escape Nonohara’s next flame attack. Koutarou somehow ends up being roasted instead, and Hayate appears behind Nonohara to get the hit that wins the match. Afterwards, Nonohara admits his defeat and is impressed with how Hayate picked Koutarou off the floor and used him to take the attack. Nonohara wants Hayate to learn his own deadly techniques for the next time they meet so that they could fight more seriously. As for Nagi, she thought that Hayate and Hinagiku looked cool, but she doesn’t want to return to the kendo club because the equipment still stinks.
When it comes time to part ways for the day, Hinagiku asks Hayate what he’s going to do. She thinks that he needs to learn a deadly technique and train, and she wants to see it when he’s done. Back at the Sanzenin mansion, Nagi decides to help Hayate in acquiring a technique by sending him into a tiger cave for special training. And of course, just as Hayate suspects, it is Tama waiting for him inside the cave.
This episode was actually divided into three parts, with the first two being actual plot and the third being comprised of four parody shorts. In order, they were Matsuoka Shuuzou‘s Kuishinbou! Bansai -> Klaus’ Kuishinbou! Mansai!, Sekai no Shasou kara -> Zen Sekai no Shasou kara, Kyou no Wanko -> XX no Wanko (the Xs standing for what’s covered up), and Watanabe Atsushi no Tatemono Tanbou -> Klaus no Otaku Tanbou. Other references I caught included the Tatsumaki Senpuukyaku attack from Street Fighter, Kamen Rider (both weapons that hit Koutarou), Akado Suzunosuke, and the preview for next episode has Hayate uttering a phrase from Pumpkin Scissors.
In any case, I enjoyed the episode since it was funny in a rather over-the-top kind of way, with all the talk of deadly techniques and training reminding me of shounen series like Bleach and Dragonball Z. Hayate has a new objective now, and if this were a regular shounen series, he’d go through many trials to acquire the techniques before another decisive battle with Nonohara. Maybe he’d even get to fight Himuro down the road. This is, however, Hayate no Gotoku!, and next week looks to be about Nagi dressing up a maid.