So, starting with the Den-O (re)watch.
Personally, I didn’t realize before the link between Den-O and Ryuki, but now I do, and Ryuki being my favorite it’s inevitable that I’m going to be drawing conclusions, the first of which involves Ryotaro himself and the ways in which he is like Shinji, and the ways in which he’s not. Obviously, they’re both “Fail!Riders”, but their attitudes are very different. Ryotaro is resigned to be bullied, both by other people and by the universe itself, really, while Shinji kind of… just creates his own shenanigans, but meets everything with what can only be called feistiness. But really, even in this first episode, the real similarity between them is their drive to do the right thing. Shinji gets involved in things that are not his business out of his sense of justice, and Ryotaro, even when kicked to the curve, is always all about doing the right thing… to the point protecting those that have wronged him. And there’s kind of an innocence, I think, in that, in their overpowering goodness.
But anyway, thoughts while watching ep 1:
- Upon my first rewatch of a Rider series, I always find that I don’t remember the very first image or scene from the first episode (well, except for Decade, because come on, Rider War was epic). Den-O is no exception. Although I did remember that Ryotaro’s first scene involved him stranded on his bike up on a tree…
- The OP mostly makes me realize that I’ve missed Kamen Rider these past few months. Also, dancing Momotaros!
- Ryotaro’s reaction to the Denliner kills me. He’s dumbfounded to the point where you’d almost think he’s taking it all in stride. XD
- I love Momo’s first scene, how he’s starting his whole “Tell me your wish” speech only to be run over by an oblivious Ryotaro on his bike. :D
- Another comparison to Ryuki: the Milk Dipper somehow reminds me of Atori. I mean, obviously there’s other Riders with cafes or restaurants being an important sort of “home base”: Kuuga, Blade (sort of) and Kabuto, but these two somehow share a vibe. And amusingly enough, Ozu will also feature a cafe.
- Momo’s smack talk cracks me up. XD
- And Den-O has the funniest first henshin. Ever.
Finally, one last observation about Kobayashi tropes… it struck me while watching Momo fight the Imagin as Den-O that his whole speech about how he doesn’t care about the Imagins’ goals, how he was bored but was simply fighting whoever because it was fun, that at least as a starting point his motivations were really similar to Asakura’s and Juuzo’s, who were also driven just by their desire to fight.
Of course, the difference is that Momo actually has a heart that isn’t a shriveled little black thing, and whether or not he was being completely truthful about his motives then (which he wasn’t, because he was also driven by self-preservation, at least), his association with Ryotaro is going to change him and redeem him… if he even had to be redeemed in the first place, while Asakura and Juuzo were always past the point of no return.
Funny how the Imagin is more human than either of them, isn’t it?
Anyway, comments are welcome. :D