This is the episode we’ve all been waiting for. Cross-Z’s introduction was hyped up since the first catalogue scans. And, after 11 episodes (and even more name-changes), he’s finally here. Let’s find out what his introduction was like.
The episode starts at the cafe, where Sentou details his plans to turn the Cross Dragon into a henshin device for Ryuuga to use. They hear about a SMASH attacking at a cliche tokusatsu warehouse and go over to investigate, despite the dragon bottle’s danger. Sentou and Ryuuga arrive at the warehouse where they find Night Rouge. Sentou uses the Dragon and Lock bottles to transform but they over-power him. Ryuuga tries to use the dragon bottle to transform but he can’t, this is later revealed to be because Ryuuga can only transform when he wants to help someone. To be completely honest, this just seems like a lazy way to stop him from transforming until the end. Considering what his motivations are, they’ll probably forget about this later in the series.
Back at the cafe, Misora notices Sawa try to place another bug. She tries to confront her about it but she leaves, and alerts Nanba that her cover may have been blown. Later on, Misora tries to warn Sentou about Sawa. He gets a message from Sawa with a video of her being turned into a SMASH. Even for Faust this seems a little harsh to me. One possible screw up and you’re a SMASH, they don’t even know if her cover was definitely blown yet.
Sentou goes to fight the SMASH but ends up being overpowered by the bottles again. Ryuuga comes in and takes the bottles and uses them to become Kamen Rider Cross-Z. I really like Cross-Z’s design. It looks a bit like an upgrade for Build, but considering it uses mostly the tech I don’t really have a problem with it. The colours work great with each other and his sword, the Beat Crosser, is one of the coolest in the season (and this season has some pretty nice swords). He defeats the SMASH and rescues Sawa, who reveals to him and Sentou that she’s been a spy this whole time.
This episode was okay. Personally, I think that a secondary rider introduction should be a little better. It would’ve been nice to see more of Cross-Z or at least Ryuuga trying to get used to the suit or something first. It also would’ve been nice to see a brand new character become a rider but we still have Grease to look forward to. The episode works fine on it’s own though, just slightly underwhelming for what is meant to be an information to a new rider.