[NOTE: Missed the last Rider Battle? Click on the massive Rider Battle banner above. For this week's, click on the subtitle.]
Going to be completely honest with you guys. This should've been posted last Saturday. The whole reason why I'm doing this episode by episode is to prevent a delay on a self imposed timeline. However a few things last week got in my way that I just had to put the pause on this. Things like volunteering for an anime convention and meeting the likes of Kyle Hebert and Kara Edwards (very nice people). My birthday, which like a vast of my birthdays wasn't celebrated because I lost the spark and other more depressing things.
I try not to write when I'm feeling like that as it might sound droning and depressing through work that's totally unrelated. But anyway, you didn't come here to hear my life problems. So without further ado...
Anyway, this week Dragon Knight and Ryuki go at it again. This time armed with their second episodes. Whose will be victorious? Whose will not bore me? And more importantly, who will buy me a post-birthday present?
*DING* *DING* *DING*
Kamen Rider Dragon Knight - Episode 2 (Contract With The Dragon)
Ok, who thought it was a good idea to have a "previously" segment go on longer than it's opening title sequence? Seriously, this thing clocks in at 1:48! Rule number one: don't waste a viewer's time. (Ryuki's clocks in at 48 seconds if you're wondering.)
Avoiding a deadly dragon from last episode, Kit and Douchebag unintentionally split to get back to their dimension.
Meanwhile Maya acquires Kit's wallet in an attempt to uncover a series of mysterious disappearances. It's nice to see the journalist aspect managed to translate to Dragon Knight but rather than an actually newspaper its a blog. A conspiracy blog. A paranormal conspiracy blog. She convinces Kit to help him find his father.
Again, she runs a paranormal conspiracy blog. Just pointing that out.
Another thing I never touched on was the transformation effect in Dragon Knight. Visually they're better. Spinning circles surrounding the rider fading in the rider form. I'll say it now, when they're not using stock footage the show looks impressive. The constant use of stock footage makes it look very cut/paste. But as I said last week I'm not judging it by it's use of stock footage. I write this hoping that someone who is planning to bring another Kamen Rider into the west should happen to read this. HINT HINT!
Kit apes Spider-Man 1 trying to transform and fails. Contracts with a dragon and BINGO! Dragon Knight. From there we hit the ground running and I think thats a good thing. It seems they want to keep the audience in their seats.
...Oh and there's something about another Kamen Rider entering the fray at the last minute. Nothing important.
Kamen Rider Ryuki - Episode 2
Question: Did Ryuki step up his game this episode? Yes but more in the rider department. Deformed, it still remains uninteresting unless they're giving foreshadow. Ryuki's rider system is a bit more complex than Dragon Knight's. In mirror world Dragon Knight can pick any reflective surface to get to and from it. Whereas Ryuki's requires you to find the "door" you came through to get back. In addition they also have a limited time in Mirror World which makes for an interesting plot device down the track I'd imagine.
This episode is pretty much Shinji struggling whether or not to become a full fledged rider. But once he realises too many lives are at stake, he accepts with open arms wanting to get to the bottom of why people go missing and what's causing all the Mirror Monsters to exist in the first place. Yeah, Kit's father is missing but thats not the reason he became a rider. In fact Kit's reasoning doesn't even exist in the second episode. Because he wants to help people or because he wants to find out why his father is missing, its never established.
Anyway we're also introduced to Ren, a.k.a. Kamen Rider Knight, a shady figure who'd rather not let Shinji in on the fun. Same as Douchebag in Dragon Knight. But again, Ren one ups his western version because he's more than a guy in shades demanding the return of an advent deck. There's a hidden agenda that gets made crystal clear by the end of the episode where he attacks Shinji in his proper Ryuki form, spoiler alert.
There really not much else to bring up in any other department because they just ended up being boring office chats. Slow paced to get to a major plot point like a lady being kidnapped in a change room, which is the final straw for Shinji to become a rider. But I guess I can't be THAT upset, its still creating a universe for the series.
Despite my nit picks into slow pacing, Ryuki managed to be better than it's first episode and what a relief that was. Don't want to watch it go down hill just yet.
I have a strange feeling that those words will come back to haunt me.
The Edge: Ryuki
Action VS Reason. Reason won. There's a stated purpose for Shinji to become a Kamen Rider. A pretty light show may be impressive and believe me Dragon Knight's light show is very impressive. But we don't know why Kit became a rider which makes me struggle as to why I should invest in the entertainment, which is also good minus some bad ADR cases.
An even playing field is about to get uneven as next week will have another instalment of Rider Battle!
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