Pandora’s Box has been opened, and Pandora’s Tower nears completion. Picking up where we left off, Evolt readies the Evol Trigger, a device very similar in design and use to the Hazard Trigger, and Vernage, through Misora, enters the battlefield to steal away Sento and Pandora’s Box. The power of the Bottles on each panel seems to have been drained away, as each bottle is now clear with a white cap, as if empty.
We learn more about Pandora’s Tower, and the way it destroyed Mars in the past. As it turns out, Evolt is from a race of beings of its same type, and Vernage stood alone in fighting it in the past. She gives the team a dire warning not to let Evolt reach its final form, and then with the power of the gold bracelet, restores all of the drained Bottles.
Through a flashback, we see that Vernage’s presence has been felt in the background of the series since the very beginning. The tension of the scene is undercut by Kazumin being overly awkward towards Misora, and they move onto Gentoku making his exit.
At this point, Kazumin has been around Misora long enough that his awkwardness, in any normal person, would have disappeared. This is a small complaint in an otherwise amazing show, but it is an issue the show needs to address. Kazumin has so much depth in every other aspect of his personality, so why not this one as well?
As Sento begins to analyze Pandora’s Box in more detail, he begins working on something to push the Rider System to its limits. This is likely the beginning of his research into the final form we have seen pictures of previously. Before we can learn too much about that, though, Kazumin is able to gain some of that much-needed depth mentioned above, challenging Gentoku to a classic samurai-style duel to avenge the death of Akaba, with the stakes being Gentoku’s subservience to Kazumin. The goal here is revenge, yes, but also humiliation and dishonor, and fits nicely with Gentoku’s arc as a modern Ronin.
An emotionally charged scene between Sento and Misora later on manages to establish a great deal of continuity for them, taking away much of the ambiguity of their relationship while channeling the more dramatic side of what a late-stage Kamen Rider show with a well-established lore and characters can do. Often, in past series, a romantic connection between the main Rider and the female lead has been implicit, at best, and though it is still not concrete here, Misora’s powerful and intense response to Sento’s latest attempt to get himself killed via Rider System upgrades shows a level of care beyond the typical companion.
The final push into Touto begins, with Evolt leading the charge, and in the fighting, Sento prepares to sacrifice himself, using a piece of Pandora’s Box directly in the Build Driver for his latest upgrade. No form change occurs, and he remains in TankTank, but the Box shard allows him to reach Hazard Level 6, seemingly impossible for a normal human. Evolt’s goal, in starting the war, has been to use human technology to refine the Rider System to the point where a human body could use the Evol Trigger without destroying itself, and that goal has seemingly been reached. Evol pierces Sento’s body with an armoured fist, trying to drain energy, and leaves Banjou behind.
Sento’s Build Driver explodes, and is destroyed, allowing Evolt to take possession of his body. Here, with Sento in a white wig that looks a little too obvious, we see Evolt obtain a new form, Evolt Rabbit, to complete Phase 3. Next week, according to the preview, sees Banjou and Sento reverse roles compared to this episode.
What did you think of Kamen Rider Build’s latest episode? Leave a comment and let’s discuss!