This week focused more or less on Sen’s bodyguard Hanzo. With Sen now able to transform into a master samurai, Hanzo questions her usefulness. When an invisible, Cerberus-like beast terrorizes the dojo, her super-trick glasses are the only thing that can detect it. (This being the present day, heat-sensing goggles for everyone are just a couple eBay clicks away…but then again, the beast’s arrival was unexpected).
Once out in the courtyard where the beast can be seen due to the falling rain, the time comes for Hanzo to kiss Muneakira and become a master samurai herself – but she just can’t do it. The rain stops, and she decides to try to sacrifice herself by holding down the beast so Sen can kill them both. Naoe summons water with her mallet and Sen dispatches the beast without harming Hanzo, and she reiterates that their relationship isn’t just servant and master, but best friends as well (who, you know, occasionally licks her leg). They’ve known each other for ten years, and Hanzo was her only real friend at school.
Hyakka Ryouran hasn’t exactly distinguished itself in the character development department, but this was a nice episode for both Hanzo and Sen, as well as Naoe, who seems to have smoothly integrated into the gang as Sen’s new foil…or Jubei’s pet dog, depending on who you ask. The icing on the cake was an excellent battle against a quick and intelligent enemy. We’re left to assume it was sent by Sen’s brother, but we don’t actually know. That’s okay, there’s 5-6 more episodes to sort that out. Rating: 3