I could tell Satoru was having fun writing that river fight. I know Saichi’s the Immortal Sugimoto but that was still risky, fighting Botaro on his own surf. GK was really getting its epic game on when Sugimoto knifed a ride onto those sturgeon. Sorry Shiraishi, glorious attempt, but the sturgeons are the standout heroes of the day.
We see a continued trend with Sugimoto saving rather than killing, lending a hand to Botaro. While Sugimoto and Botaro agree to cooperate in finding the gold river, I don’t see how that will pan out. Botaro’s a pirate and he wants to establish his own country- I doubt he’ll be willing to share the gold and Asirpa is not going to be donating excessive quantities of gold to fund someone else’s nation building. What’s in it for Botaro?
Sugimoto is right- it’s still smart to search for the skins. If they suddenly stopped searching, that would be a huge tip off that there’s another way, which you can bet would get real messy, real fast. Not that where things are headed are going to be any tidier- a shitstorm is about to go down in Sapporo. However, having two irons in the fire will give Asirpa’s group a nice back door to the gold that will when everyone else is distracted in the scuffle over the skins.
Botaro reminded me of a nosy auntie, trying to play matchmaker with Sugimoto and Asirpa. It is true that they mean a lot to each other- it’s a perfectly natural bond to form after coming to trust and depend on one another in life or death situations. It doesn’t necessarily have to be romantic- Sugimoto’s over-protectiveness could just as easily be that of a father or brother as a potential lover and Asirpa is passionate about sharing and passing on her Ainu culture to anyone who will take it seriously. Is Botaro making a mountain out of a molehill? Asirpa’s ears reveal more than she might want to think and she certainly doesn’t protest those assertions. However, for all that the duo’s personal feelings may or may not be, I don’t know that I’d see things developing in that direction. For one thing, Asirpa’s dedicated to championing the cause of her people and wants to stay focused on that, which she straight up said to Botaro. For another, I don’t know that Sugimoto would allow himself to see Asirpa in that way- he’s got responsibility for his friend’s wife on top of dealing with the demons of his past.
I’ve heard of rap battles before, but leave it to GK to come up with fap battles. I would never have imagined sleuthing as Usami giving himself a murder job (ending it with a “Neigh-hay” in reference to his first experience- hilarious). I never thought a GK character could seem almost normal, but Kikuta certainly does compared to what happened here. Only GK could imagine such a face off complete with Usami look-alike sperm followed by a gun and horse chase- and against a Jack the Ripper no less- it had me dying at the sheer outlandishness. Poor Kikuta got an eyeful, but at least he can identify him by the spot on his willy- the strangest identification mark I’ve ever heard of in a murder case. I will never be able to look at Jack the Ripper the same way again.
When it comes to disguise, any of the characters in GK would be terrible at it, for the pure fact that they’re so bizarre nothing could cover that up. Which is indeed the case when Hijikata’s crew attempts to disguise themselves but their muscles and weird street acts announce them from a mile away. Ogata deadpanning it with the fake piggyback costume was my favorite. While there on Hijikata’s business, Kikuta runs into Ariko and offers him an interesting proposition to become a triple agent for the government. Ariko’s better off not triple agenting for the government- the government’s fooling themselves that they can off Tsurumi in the end. No way in hell are they going to get the better off of the guy who’s been playing the government’s agents and their children like Koito in the palm of his hands.
That was a significant tidbit that got dropped at the end. The kidnapping story got buried beneath the Jack the Ripper-ish headlines, but it certainly caught Shiraishi, Sugimoto, and Asirpa’s attention. The perpetrator in question being the Candy Man, who I knew had to show up again somewhere. And where is he heading? You guessed it- Sapporo- everything leads to Sapporo. This episode was so delightfully outlandish, I’m not sure how next week will top it- but I’m sure it will go out with a bang, leaving me both excited to see what happens and sad that another season of GK will be over so soon.