The previous episode was like a FILLER! It was about Asirpa and her dream to preserve the Ainu culture. Sugimoto tried his best to stop her, but I don’t think so Asirpa can be stopped this easily. She has changed a LOT! Let’s see what this episode has in it for us.
Lt. Tsurumi has reached Noboribetsu. Ariko and the others informed him about the Masseur and the skin they had just obtained. Ariko also told him that he realized that there is a connection between these Tattoos and the Ainu Tattoos. Later on, we see Ariko jumping from the window covered in wounds. The masseur we all thought was dead accompanied him and they were running from the soldiers. I guess Ariko BETRAYED Lt. Tsurumi, but why?
Both of them kept walking with the Masseur guiding Ariko. Before all this, Ariko can be seen searching for a box. Apparently, this box contained the Skins Lt. Tsurumi possessed. However. Tsurumi was one step ahead of him. He realized that the Skin Ariko gave him did not belong to the Masseur and that he had teamed up with Hijikata Toshizou.
He threatened Ariko to become his Double Agent and gather information from Hijikata. He let him take all of his skins. However, he couldn’t let him escape without any wounds, so he let Ussami beat him to a pulp.
The reason Tsurumi let Ariko take all of his skins was that they were not REAL but fake copies made on human skins by a skilled artist named Edogai-Kun. Tsurumi thought that he had out-witted Hijikata. But DAMNNN he was wrong! After seeing Ariko’s condition, Hijikata realized that he was working as a double agent for Tsurumi and that these skins are fake. Everything was going according to his plan.
Meanwhile, Sugimoto and the others were on their way to meet Lt. Tsurumi. On their way, they had to drop Enonoka back at her village. Cikapasi and Enonoka had gotten particularly close. She didn’t want him to leave. However, Cikapasi promised her that he’d come back.
As they were leaving, Cikapasi suddenly realized that he should be with Enonoka and the Old Man to protect them. However, his bond with Tanigaki was also at stake here. He was confused. So, Tanigaki took the BIG STEP! He told Cikapasi that he should stay back with Enonoka. He also gave him his gun so that he can hunt using it. It was really EMOTIONAL!!
Everything Was Pre-Planned!
After reaching Oodomari, Tsukishima realized that Lt. Koito doesn’t seem too happy with meeting Lt. Tsurumi and inquired about the reason. Koito replied by saying that he was concerned about what Ogata had told him. Ogata told him to ask Lt. Tsurumi about the South Manchuria Railway Company and his connection with it.
Long story short, Tsukishima told Koito that Lt. Tsurumi is the most competent man he has ever seen. Everything he does is well-planned and sorted out. His ULTIMATE GOAL is to capture Hokkaido and establish a Military Government. Tsurumi had pre-planned everything including Koito’s kidnapping and even meeting him. This made Koito even more obsessed with Lt. Tsurumi.
He also told him that Tsurumi was the one who saved him using underhanded tricks just because he wanted to use him and that he shouldn’t trust Ogata as he’d do anything to CRUSH them.
The following day, Shiraishi came back drunk with a prostitute. He punched Sugimoto right in the face telling him that he is not thinking about Asirpa. He’s just thinking about himself. He has gotten soft and is now looking for a reason to LIVE. And that reason is to protect Asirpa.
He should just let Asirpa do what she wants. If she wants to protect and lead Ainu, he should let her do that!
This episode was a MASTERPIECE! Ariko’s Betrayal, Koito’s Doubt, and Sugimoto’s Resolve, all of these were executed PERFECTLY!
Ariko’s betrayal was kinda unexpected but yeah! It was good. Basically, everything in this episode was unexpected. Can’t wait for the next one.