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Kamen Rider Build Episode 26 Review

When last we left our heroes, Sento had attacked Misora. As we pick up, Misora’s bracelet is able to purify Sento’s hazard form, and deactivate the transformation. Misora is ok, but Kazumi begins to suspect that there is a mole inside the combined force of Touto and Hokuto’s Kamen Riders. The obvious suspect, at least to me, is Sawa. Sawa has been shown before to be colluding with Nanba Heavy Industry, and is likely a Child of Nanba, the same way the Washio brothers are.

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The scene cuts to the Prime Minister of Setio standing over Pandora’s Box, plotting to open it. He claims to need Touto’s Full Bottles to make that happen, and the Prime Minister of Touto refuses to hand them over. Back in the cafe, the team debates the probability of a spy, with Kazumi and and Ryuga arguing like they always do. They are interrupted by the news that Seito has called for a ceasefire, while they prepare for a second proxy battle.
This time around, it will be three rounds of one on one combat, with the total annexation of Touto and its Bottles as a prize. Kazumi offers to join the fight on Touto’s side, and preparations begin. For Sento’s part of this, he begins developing a machine that will allow him to retain his mind while in the Overflow State created by the Hazard Trigger. The power, he theorises, comes from Misora’s bracelet, and he asks for her help in developing the item.

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Misora is strapped into a VR headset, closes the door to the purification chamber, and old footage from earlier episodes begins to play while Sento begins to explain how Full Bottles and Best Matches work. They discuss that Best Matches come primarily from combining Organic Item Bottles, such as Rabbit, with Inorganic, such as Tank. Ryuga, in his curiosity, asks the question, “Can Organic or Inorganic bottles be combined with another of the same type to make a Best Match?”

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No immediate answer is given, but Sento begins to think.
The scene cuts to Sawa answering a phone call, and then back to the lab. Sento’s excited hair spike makes a return as he claims a new bottle, this time white instead of the usual black on top.

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This is, for those who follow the toy catalogues and scans, the prototype version of the RabbitRabbit Bottle.

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Sento attempts to test the new mix, and the Bottle explodes in his driver, destroying it. A modification needs to be made, he says, and Sawa enters, claiming to offer help.

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The show isn’t exactly subtle, in these moments, about who the traitor is, but at least the exchange is brief as we cut to Kazumi mourning his lost friends.

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He stands before a makeshift grave at the base of the Sky Wall, with ribbons in red, blue, and yellow tied around it. Matching dog tags find their way to a small hole in the ground, and Ryuga shares a bonding moment with Kazumi at long last, bringing the two closer together as a team. Ryuga then suggests that he and Kazumi begin training, in order to raise each other’s Hazard Level. He finds a microphone inside the Dragon Full Bottle, and we cut back to Sawa and Sento.

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Sento reveals to Sawa that he did some digging into her past, and finds that no one with Sawa’s family name Takigawa was killed in the incident. Sawa, without hesitation, tells Sento that she changed her name to her mother’s maiden name following her father’s death. Again, the show is heavy handed here, but not undeservingly. The camera angles, music, and acting in this scene all come together to paint the clear picture that Sawa is up to something. As Sento talks about ending the war, Sawa looks flatly, straight ahead at the wall.
The next shot is the matchups on the fight card for the event that makes up the proxy battle. It breaks down as follows:

  1. Sawatari Kazumi (Kamen Rider Grease) vs Washio Rai (Engine Bros)
  2. Banjo Ryuga (Kamen Rider Cross-Z) vs Washio Fu (RemoCon Bros)
  3. Kiryu Sento (Kamen Rider Build) vs Himuro Gentoku (Kamen Rider Rogue)

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We enter a large open room, the arena for the fight, and a drone camera begins to broadcast round one. The leaders of both sides are shown watching, with Chief Nanba backing Seito. Back in the lab, Sento and Sawa have finally finished the RabbitRabbit Full Bottle as we see it in the magazine scans and toy listings.

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The battle begins between Kazumi and Washio Rai, starting with a transformation.

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The ref calls for them to begin, and as the drone follows the pair around the room, they are bathed in light from its camera. We see the actual fight from multiple angles, as Misora and Ryuga look on, as well as snippets of flashback scenes to the training given to the Washio brothers as children. Sawa is clearly seen among their ranks.

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This establishes the Children of Nanba as a group of child soldiers, with Nanba Heavy Industries having a borderline religious status in the minds of the group’s members. We cut to Sawa uploading the data on RabbitRabbit to Nanba’s server from Sento’s computer.

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Back in the battle arena, Kazumi takes a finishing move at full force, and manages to get back up, giving Washio Rai a lecture about the value of friendship, and the necessity of passion to protect those friends when fighting.
After several punishing hits, Kazumi pulls off a flashy, cinematic finishing move, forcing Washio Rai out of his transformation and pinning him to the ground with a heavy boot. Kazumi is declared the winner, and Sento arrives with RabbitRabbit in hand.

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It is at this point that Sawa is finally outed (again) as a traitor. Ryuga enters the arena, and finds that his opponent has been changed slightly. Washio Fu now his brother’s Full Bottle, creating a “Funky Match” and becoming a new Hard Smash called HellBros. The episode ends on Ryuga’s terrified reaction to the new combination.

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What did you think of this week’s episode? Are you excited to see the next two rounds of the proxy battle? Leave a comment below!