You really feel the length and breadth of the journey Togame and Shichika are undertaking when you have to wait a month for each episode. The scale of the Japan they traverse it largely on foot is felt too, as well as the pace of life in a different age.
Each month has had a different flavor, from straightforward one-on-one battles to this month’s extremely cerebral and zen-like, riddle riddled battle that isn’t even a battle, save against Togame’s and Shichika’s own psyches. This episode also used not one or two but every one of the opponents Shichika initially lost to, including his sister.
I was worried there would be recap, but these characters were brought back for a specific and original purpose as part of a greater illusion by this month’s opponent, a ‘holy man’ with the form of a mischievous child. Since this is the third to last episode, more is revealed about identities, objectives, and motivations, and it portends a great deal of clashing between Togame, the Maniwa, and the princess with the guns. Rating: 3.5