ha ha ha ha ha YES.

Of all the ways I expected this post-death spotlight on Kento to go, the absolute last way was Kento Watches A Recap Of “Kamen Rider Saber” And Realizes What A Pain In The Ass He’s Been. (I sort of hoped that we’d come back from the title screen and it’d be Tassel saying, “Oh no! He died! Here’s Blades instead!”) It’s such a fantastically self-aware addition to Kento’s story, and it both entertains despite its clip-show format, and maybe slightly improves Episode 13 while it’s at it.

It’s a lot of old clips, though. Befitting its side-story placement, we’re really only getting new footage from two rooms: the recuperation room, and the Sword of Logos entryway. (Well, and an alleyway from Rintaro and Mei’s Calibur-hunting date, inexplicably.) Everything else is just clips of Kento’s journey from mopey friend to poisoned friend to dead friend.

It doesn’t do a great job threading the needle of filling out scenes from the first few episodes (Sophia watches Rintaro leave to retake Touma’s book and sword, and then immediately tells Kento that Touma can stay in the guild), but it’s gratifying to see Kento finally get it, you know? It’s nice to see him look back on his dedication to uncovering the secrets of his father (Espadad), and just now noticing that no one ever wanted him to give up his happiness and safety in pursuit of that goal. Even Ogami’s like It’s Not A Big Deal, and that dude was actually around for Calibur’s rampage 15 years ago. It is incredibly charming to build out an entire bonus feature around a pre-death Kento figuring out that he’s a weird, emotional burden on his supportive friends, and deciding to be a better person.

That’s about all this episode has, but it’s plenty. It’s just Kento wanting to be there for his friends in the same way they’ve always been there for him, with whatever time he has left. It’s a sweet little epilogue for this stage of Kento’s story.



I TURN MY CAMERA ON



“I’ve never won anything before,” Rintaro said.

It was a thing people said, but it was rarely accurate. Minor awards in grade school, consolation prizes from a fast food purchase; there was always some exception to the expression. Rintaro wasn’t one for exaggeration or hyperbole, though. If Rintaro said it, it was a fact.

He’d had a good life, but it was a serious one. He studied. He trained. He researched. He assisted the Sword of Logos in whatever capacity was required. But he didn’t play games, or win prizes. He’d never gambled, or been awarded something for his luck or his mettle.

It must feel nice to have won. Mei hoped he was happy with it.

“It was nice to win something. It makes me happy,” Rintaro said to Mei. He held the camera out in front of him, taking it in with pride. It was light blue, which Mei had said meant he was destined to win it.

Mei smiled at Rintaro’s typical corny honesty. She’d raced to join him, when he said he’d be scouring the city for Calibur. She didn’t know much yet about the guild that Touma had so abruptly been drafted into the other day, and she was hoping that Rintaro would share some secrets. She’d thought of ways she could surreptitiously probe for details. She considered different tactics to gain his trust.

It turned out, all she had to do was ask.

Rintaro happily provided answers for all of Mei’s questions, as though the thought of lying to her about the Sword of Logos or about his life would cause him physical pain. Whenever she’d tease him about some ludicrous detail or another – they were almost exclusively ludicrous details, so she needed to pick her shots – he’d get flustered and apologetic, like he’d committed some inexcusable faux pas, where once the guild found out he’d be expelled on the spot. She kept having to tell him she was joking, and then he’d laugh politely at his own anxiety. It was a little adorable, she had to admit.

They’d stopped at the raffle table in the alley, just after she’d gotten her fruit drink. (She’d offered to buy one for Rintaro, but the amount of sweets on top of the cup made him blush and stammer so much that the manager had to ask them to leave.) Rintaro’s attitude changed immediately, his curiosity replaced with steely determination. She honestly thought Calibur might’ve been manning the table, for Rintaro’s speed in approaching it.

Rintaro paid the fee and spun the wheel, the winning ball coming out on the first try. It was such a rush, watching Rintaro win. He was so button-down, so proper in all of his mannerisms. But there he was, winning an instant camera from a cheap raffle, and you’d think they’d saved the world. Rintaro was bouncing in delight, as Mei cheered on his good fortune.

Even now, as they’d resumed their search for Calibur, Rintaro’s excitement hadn’t seemed to abate. He kept smiling at the camera, doting over it. It was cute, but it was starting to get a little weird.

“You know what that is, right? It’s just a camera,” Mei said to Rintaro, with as little chiding humor in her voice as she could manage. (It was very difficult with Rintaro.)

“Of course,” Rintaro turned to her and replied. “It’s an instant camera. A Fujifilm Instax Mini 11. Usually retails for around 9000 yen. A solid camera for young adult Homo Sapiens.”

“Oh, uh… wow, okay, you definitely know your cameras,” Mei said with amazement. “You a big photography buff or something, Rintaro?”

“No,” Rintaro said, his attention back on the camera. “I’ve never had a camera before. I’d read about this one, but I’ve never thought to own one.”

“Well, lucky boy with his lucky blue camera, you own one now. What do you think you’ll shoot first?”

Rintaro stopped walking, and stared at the camera in his hands. “I’ve read that this camera is most useful for taking pictures with friends, or with family. I’d very much like to take a picture with my friends.” He smiled slightly. “With my family.”

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