Samurai Champloo, Episode 25 Recap: “Evanescent Encounter (Part 2)”

Original Toonami Airdate: June 25th, 2016

The end continues.

Evanescent Encounter, part 2 - Jin Kills His MasterPicking up from last week, Mugen begins his fight against Kariya, but despite his fast and erratic movements, Kariya is able to gain the upper hand and knock Mugen into the ocean. He then sets his sights on Jin, wanting to test the man who killed Enshiro Mariya. Jin is somewhat thrown off by how he knows that he killed his master, but Kariya immediately begins fighting again, and Mugen eventually joins back in for bit. The fight’s somewhat interrupted by the arrival of one of the assassins (the deformed-looking one named Denkibou) who tells our heroes to go to a church on the other island, or else bad things will happen to Fuu. After debating for a bit, Mugen agrees to go to the island while Jin stays behind to fight Kariya, during which Jin manages to piece together Kariya’s identity and history. As it turns out, Jin’s master Mariya once discussed with Jin the possibility of turning their dojo into an assassin training academy under the request of Kariya, but Jin stubbornly refused. When Mariya reported this to Kariya, he commanded him to slay his own pupil in the middle of the night. This did not go as expected, as Jin quickly but unexpectedly disposed of his master when attacked, forced to carry the burden of his deeds ever since.

Before they continue their fight, Jin and Kariya discuss their motives and their place in the current world, feeling out of place given both of their life circumstances. Then the fight picks back up, with Kariya appearing to gain the upper hand. Jin tries one last particular move out of desperation, and the two lunge at each other directly, and while blood spurts are shown, a victor can’t be easily discerned. Back out on the boat, Mugen is surprised by Denkibou’s presence, and despite being told to do nothing until they get to the island, he attacks Mugen. The two fight, maneuvering as best they can in the boat’s enclosed spaces, until the fight ends up underwater and Mugen stabs Denkibo directly through the chest. He eventually makes his way to the island and comes across the church, desolate and broken down, where he finds the assassin with the chain-sickle (Umanosuke) physically assaulting Fuu. When confronted, Umanosuke asks if Mugen remembers him, and when he says no, he fills him in on the details. In a surprising reveal, the assassins (all brothers, including the wheelchair-bound one named Toube) were in charge of security on, of all places, the raw sugar ship that Mugen and Mukuro (see Misguided Miscreants pts. 1 + 2) savaged and took over before Mukuro left Mugen for dead. The assault left all three brothers crippled and deformed in some way, and they’ve been out for revenge ever since, especially because they were never able to work government jobs due to their failure. Umanosuke agrees to free Fuu if Mugen gives up his sword, which he does, throwing it at Fuu and freeing her. Mugen tells her to leave and go find Seizo Kasumi, promising he’ll take care of Umanosuke, and she quickly exits as the fight begins, with Mugen quickly sustaining a few lethal blows. As Fuu makes her way to the house, Kariya approaches by boat, with the reveal that he managed to slay Jin, and the episode ends with Fuu standing at the door to the house where Seizo Kasumi, the Samurai Who Smells Of Sunflowers, must reside.

 

One more to go. One last episode until the series ends, but it can’t end without a couple of curveballs being thrown in our heroes’ way. As it turns out, the characters of the “week” (well, mini arc in this case) all have uncomfortably specific ties to our two lead samurai’s pasts. This is to be expected as their past as managed to creep back up a handful of times across the series, but it’s interesting to see our heroes forced to confront the demons of their past. They’ve spent their whole lives running and trying to escape, but there’s only so long they can for before having to eventually settle things. This contrasts quite nicely with Fuu’s overall progression across the series, as her character’s sole motivation is all about pursuing and confronting her past, which she is about to finally do when she opens the door to that house. The finale is soon, and the journey will finally come to an end.

Note: there will be no Samurai Champloo episode next week, as there will be a Hunter x Hunter marathon airing over 4th of July weekend.

What did you think of the episode? Let us know down in the comments below.

 

Samurai Champloo airs every Saturday at 1:00 AM, only on Toonami.

 

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