Tiger & Bunny

March 4, 2012

Have you ever thought of getting a job as a Hero? Yes, the kind of hero where you get to fight bad guys and protect the city you love in the name of justice. You get to wear super cool Hero suits (some may look at it as an embarrassment), pull off cool moves and manoeuvres and perhaps come up with your own great catch phrase. Seems like a dream come true, eh? Well, in Tiger & Bunny, being a Hero is one of those full time jobs that you can get provided if you have some sort of super power. And like the over-used super hero movie line, “With great powers come great responsibilities”. Initially I thought this show has something to do by ushering the new lunar Chinese New Year. You know, it came out in April 2011. Just a couple of months when the year of the tiger has turned into the year of a rabbit. However there are no relations whatsoever to it.

In the fictitious city of Stern Bild, your typical metropolis that has everything that it needs that makes it a city status. The towering skyscrapers, the high technological facilities and amenities, the 20 million population and the crime rate. Oh yes, it sure is a city alright. Reminds you of the Big Apple that is New York, eh? Furthermore, I find that the multi-levels of the city are somewhat amusing. I guess they lack space so that’s why the city is ‘stack’ up in several layers, making it look like a layer dessert/cake plate. I wonder if those statues serving as support pillars are strong enough to hold it up. Of course they should. Don’t want everything to get crushed below, eh? Ahem, back to the blog. So in this era, there are 2 kinds of people. Those without power (ordinary folks like you and me) and those with super power termed NEXT. Gee, I thought it was a funny acronym for something. Perhaps New Evolutionary X-factor Things. Just kidding. I guess the word ‘mutant’ has been taken and trademark. So what better than to call the ‘next’ evolution in mankind as NEXT. Get it?

With different NEXT wielding different powers, there are those who use their powers for evil. But don’t despair, there are those who equally use it to uphold justice and protect the weak. That’s why with great powers come… You get the point. However another amusing thing sets this series apart than your typical superhero series. Heroes as we know here are another kind of job. Though the action in catching and fighting criminals are real, they are subjected to the cameras and videos. Yup, being a Hero here means show business and via Hero TV, everyone can watch their favourite Heroes in this so called reality programme channel. You get points for arriving on scene the quickest, saving citizens from danger and apprehending the felons. And the highest point scorer earns the MVP (Most Valuable Player) Award at the end of the season. Wow. With all the big sponsors chipping in, this is really a huge money spinning business with audience and fans guaranteed to be glued to the screen. Man, this has got to be better than the World Cup.

Episode 1
Hero TV is bringing you live the Heroes in action taking on crimes right to your living room. Three robbers are on the getaway. First Hero to arrive on scene is Fire Emblem followed by Rock Bison, Dragon Kid and Origami Cyclone. Though Dragon Kid arrests 2 of the robbers, another one flees and takes a monorail hostage. Hero TV producer, Agnes Joubert wants Wild Tiger to move in 30 seconds after the commercial but he doesn’t listen because he feels Heroes should only care about keeping the peace. He uses his super strength to bend the rail and when he smashes in, the robber somehow escaped and boarded the airship. The people’s favourite, Sky High makes his entry as the robber tries to slow them down but his missile is causing the blimp to crash. While Sky High saves the civilians, Wild Tiger goes to apprehend the criminal. Yeah, he too gives up but wants to be arrested by Sky High instead! The airship is going to crash into a passenger ship when super idol Hero, Blue Rose freezes the ocean. The robber changes his mind in getting arrested and starts shooting, making Blue Rose flee. Wild Tiger powers up but it seems his Hundred Power’s 5-minute limit is up, causing him to turn back into a normal human. Just then a mysterious new Hero shows up and saves him and at the same time saves the civilians. He lifts his mask much to the audiences’ delight as the programme ends. Later Wild Tiger lectures him about showing his face to the public but the new guy thinks he is old fashion and walks away. Wild Tiger is being reprimanded by his manager, Ben Jackson about the damages caused and being reminded that it is the sponsors that made him a Hero. As the Heroes line up for the MVP Award, as expected Sky High tops them all. Then the CEO of Apollon Media and president of OBC, Albert Maverick turns up for his speech. He introduces Barnaby Brooks Jr (that mysterious Hero) as a newly approved Hero by the Justice Bureau. Maverick makes a comparison between Barnaby and Wild Tiger’s similar power but only difference one of them is old. Wild Tiger leaves the ceremony as Maverick continues his speech on NEXT, individuals with super powers who suddenly appeared 45 years ago due to a mutation. Peace in this city has been upheld thanks to these people working as Heroes. Wild Tiger’s real life alter ego, Kotetsu T. Kaburagi isn’t impressed seeing Hero trading cards of himself unsold. It’s a huge stack as compared to Sky High or Blue Rose sold out. Yeah, even that remark as a veteran Hero making his debut 10 years ago. Feeling old, isn’t he? Better buy them up! Back home he gets a call from his daughter Kaede reminding him about her recital. Then his mom talks to him, warning him to be careful and not lose his life or else she’ll have to tell Kaede’s his true occupation. It seems he has to keep his work a secret from his own daughter. Kotetsu goes to his agency and to his surprise, a notice of closure. Ben tells him they have been bought out since they’re struggling with funds. He gives him the contacts of his new boss and doesn’t want him to worry since he’ll always be a fan of Wild Tiger and not seeing him fight as a Hero is much worse. As Kotetsu goes to his new workplace, he helps a kid with his balloon stuck on the tree. He drops his own trading cards so the kid misinterpret he is a Wild Tiger fan and gives him his own Wild Tiger card since he doesn’t need it and is a fan of Sky High. Feeling unwanted? As Kotetsu talks to his new boss, Lloyds, a Steel Hammer Statue wreaks havoc at an industrial area. Kotetsu has to go into action and reluctantly work with his new owners. He can’t be picky because Lloyds always tells him he can quit. Plus, he has to wear a totally new and enhanced suit and will be working with a new partner. He thought it was Rock Bison but it turned out to be that Barnaby guy.

Episode 2
While the statue continues to bring carnage, Tiger isn’t happy Barnaby is trying to locate the other Heroes’ whereabouts so as to time his grand entrance. As they both go into action, Tiger isn’t used in using his new string equipment so much so he blunders and ties them both up! Don’t they look comical in that position? The statue is about to smash them and all of a sudden it stopped. It has been that ever since for an hour. Kotetsu gets an earful by Lloyds that he’s supposed to be Barnaby’s foil and his assistant. You can tell Kotetsu isn’t happy. Besides, the mechanic is angry with him too. Yeah, the very soft speaking mechanic Saito that you can’t hear the f*ck his says. But when he speaks through some communicator, he sounds very loud and rash!!! Don’t underestimate people with soft voices. As the person who developed his suit, Saito demonstrates how crappy his old suit is compared to his new one. Doesn’t it make you cringe seeing your old suit blown to bits? He has also taken into account his 5 minute power limit and has equipped the new suit with a… Clock?! Yeah, it keeps track when his power is running out. You thought it was something super, didn’t you? Kotetsu is obviously late for his daughter’s ice figure skating competition. She knows he won’t make it but he insists he will. She is also excited that Isaac, the junior champion is entering the competition. True enough, the alarm sounds as the statue resumes moving. Looks like he’ll have to skip the competition. Heading on scene, they see a child on the statue. Barnaby deduces that he must be a NEXT and the culprit but Tiger doesn’t care about that crap and wants to save him. Barnaby warns him that it was his rash judgment that got them into a predicament the last time and doesn’t trust him. Flashback reveals there was a robbery-cum-hostage at a bank. Mr Legend barges in to save the day. A robber takes a kid (Kotetsu) as a human shield but Kotetsu starts glowing and repels the guy away. Kotetsu feels down as he can’t touch anyone when he’s shining like this and his powers hurt power. But Mr Legend says he saved him and that makes him a Hero. Those words cheered him up and gave him encouragement. In present time, I don’t know how but the duo are stuck in the statue’s hands. Yeah, it stopped moving again. They start arguing as Tiger calls Barnaby “Bunny” because he ‘hops’ around and his long metal things resemble like bunny ears. Yeah, Tiger childishly repeats Barnaby’s words. Tiger then uses his power to free himself and leave Barnaby behind (he has his 5 minute power limit too). Then a Lion Statue goes on a rampage and Agnes doesn’t want Tiger to damage it since it is considered a cultural artefact. Unless he doesn’t mind paying the high price. Tiger sees that same kid riding the lion as it crashes into the skating rink. While Tiger lets the other spectators escape, he sees Kaede lying on the rink. Debris are threatening to fall over her as he races over. However he was too late as the debris crush her. No way! Thankfully, Barnaby was there to take her away from being squished. The duo confront the kid, Tony who is doing this because the other kids left him out for having such powers. Even Isaac agrees it is creeping them out and wants him to go away. Tiger understands how Tony feels and relates the same experience when he was young. He persuades him that his power will be useful when he’s older but first he must apologize to everyone and go to the police. Tony believes him and turns himself in. Suddenly the building’s top is falling off (oh, why is that Isaac in it). All the Heroes try to hold the structure but Tiger’s power is reaching its limit. Tiger wants Tony to help out. Though reluctant at first, he finally uses the statue to lift the structure. Everyone applause at how cool he is. Before Tony is being taken away by the police, Tiger tells him he is a Hero because he saved them. Barnaby talks to Maverick and he isn’t happy working with Tiger but Maverick says this is his chance to sell his name. While Kaede isn’t happy about her dad’s no-show, Kotetsu insists he’ll still save her if he was there. But to add salt to wounds, Kaede mentions how Barnaby saved her has become his fan. Oh dear.

Episode 3
Tiger and Barnaby are yet in another war zone. Yet in another argument. While Tiger insists on his instincts, Barnaby would rather rely on his theories. Till Tiger gets shot. Then it’s revealed this is just simulation. Barnaby is fed up of Tiger and can’t work like this and leaves. Flashback reveals how Lloyds reprimanded Kotetsu for being unable to get along since their Hero team is the agency’s selling point. Thanks to Barnaby, their stock prices have been skyrocketing. He wants Kotetsu to guide Barnaby since he is young. Perhaps a simulation. If he doesn’t like it, he can always quit. Agnes and her crew are interviewing other Heroes on Barnaby. They all sing praises for him except for Tiger. Agnes isn’t happy his attitude is ruining her show and even comes up with words just for him to say on camera. The Hero TV crew even makes a visit to Barnaby’s home, calling it an in-depth interview as fans want to know about his private life. Later Barnaby remembers reading a newspaper article how his parents were assassinated when he was young and was left all alone. Agnes continues her filming on Barnaby and wants Tiger to take him out to town as part of the scenario. He has to, or else. Acting naturally like what they usually do, Barnaby is a hit with the kids and chicks while nobody is even looking at Tiger. Then they head to the newly opened Fortress Tower. Upon entering a lift, Tiger sees a suspicious repairman exiting though the latter insists he was just oiling the elevators. At the top, Tiger tries hard not to be a jerk but it’s tough trying to be serious when you’re not interested. Suddenly the alarm goes off and a security guard rushes to tell Agnes and the Heroes there has been a bomb detected but its location unsure. Tiger remembers the repairman and rushes to the lift while cool Barnaby directs the crowd to evacuate. Climbing to the top of the lift shaft, Tiger sees a real C9 bomb. Agnes wants to film them all the way but Tiger tells them they should evacuate too and not fool around. I guess she wouldn’t listen to him but Barnaby. Yeah, he suggests that Tiger do the filming for her. The duo go to diffuse the bomb but with Tiger’s hands full with the camera, Barnaby will have to handle this himself. He asks Tiger how he knew where the bomb is. Tiger mentions about the repairman and the dead giveaway was this building was recently opened so it’s odd to have repairs. Secondly, he was too clean and not dirty. Barnaby sarcastically praises him. As Barnaby is done with most of the work, the final hurdle is to cut one of the wires, top or the bottom one. The wrong one will of course blow up the building. Are we going to rely on Tiger’s guts? If Barnaby had a theory, he wouldn’t be in dire straits. Better hurry, the clock is ticking fast! Oh sh*t! Ten seconds left! Tiger yells “Top!”. And in the aftermath we see the Heroes still breathing and the building still intact. This was what happened. Barnaby didn’t cut the top part. Rather when both of them start to glow, Tiger destroyed layers of the building to create a gaping hole to the sky. Then Barnaby uses his kick to send the bomb flying and exploding in the air. Kotetsu meets Antonio Lopez (Rock Bison’s real identity) at the bar and they talk about the incident and Barnaby. Due to the good words he said about his partner on TV (most likely he was made to say it anyway), Antonio thinks they’re getting along well. The pianist at the bar, Karina Lyle (Blue Rose) sees Kotetsu applauding at her. She didn’t seem happy and turns around, much to Kotetsu’s bafflement.

Episode 4
Karina’s mom is telling her daughter how she should put more enthusiasm in her catchphrase. But you know teenagers in their rebellious years. Tiger and Barnaby chase a criminal running away in an armoured vehicle. That is considered a civilian vehicle? Tiger scares the felon when he climbs up on the vehicle and says hi. Effective enough to put stop him dead in his tracks. But he escapes. He is running towards Blue Rose’s direction. As she is halfway through her catchphrase, the felon starts firing, shocking and throwing Blue Rose off her balance. Luckily Barnaby was quick enough to save her as Dragon Kid make a lightning arrest (pun intended). Later Blue Rose notes Barnaby’s nasty attitude so Tiger mentions she isn’t paying enough attention due to her side job. He says he can’t be a Hero this way but she tells him to shut his trap since he hasn’t scored any points this season. Plus, he’s lame. Karina’s normal life is hectic because she has to attend supplementary classes and can’t hang out with her friends (they don’t know she’s a Hero). Then meeting her boss, he is lecturing her about that embarrassing stint that made their rival earn points. Karina blows her top about risking her life to win battles all for the sponsors’ sake. She mentions that she doesn’t want to be a Hero in the first place and the reason she is one now was because the company said it was a requirement if she wanted to debut as a singer. Karina takes out her complaints to Nathan Seymour (Fire Emblem) so Kotetsu steps in to say that they’re not risking their lives just to be appreciated by someone. She has the last straw when her mom mentions about Barnaby’s noble words (which is what Kotetsu exactly said) so she wants to quit being a Hero. Mommy is shocked. What about being a singer? She can always do that at the bar. As Karina plays her piano at the bar as Kotetsu ‘bugs’ her and gives her a dollar as tips because her singing is good. Karina asks him why he continues being a Hero so he asks her why she sings. Because she loves to and wants everyone to hear her. That’s the same answer Kotetsu gives her. Because he loves saving people and it doesn’t matter if people acknowledges him or not. Back home, Karina’s dad goes to talk to her. Not about her quitting but rather her half-assed attitude that will lead to disaster. He thinks she should quit. She then gets a call to replace a singer who couldn’t turn up but at the same time, the Heroes are being called. Which to choose? The mission today is to search and rescue at an oil rig which is being engulfed by flames. As usual, Tiger doesn’t listen to Agnes’ orders to wait and wants to head in and rescue. Barnaby also has the same idea but he’s doing it for the points. Karina chose to go singing at the bar when she notices a bunch of drunk men criticizing the Heroes and making a bet if they can rescue the victim. Karina gets pissed off and tells them off about Heroes putting their lives on the line. Tiger, Barnaby and Rock Bison are holding up a heavy beam so that Sky High can swoop down and save the victim. They are barely holding on and the structure is going to collapse on them. But what do you know, it freezes and it’s about time Blue Rose shows up. She returns her answer to Tiger that she wants to save those in trouble. Then to her dismay, she finds out Tiger had betted if she’d turn up or not with Barnaby but the latter insists he never betted. But with that, she feels better (albeit still disgusted with Tiger) and puts more effort in her catchphrase.

Episode 5
Kotetsu is in court and once again his agency will have to compensate for the damages he made. Outside, Barnaby tells him off that he has had it with his destruction, causing trouble around him and meddling in his private affairs. Suddenly a lady goes up to Barnaby to ask his autograph for her son who is his biggest fan (he’s just an infant!). She wishes him happy birthday for tomorrow but accidentally drops her pen. Kotetsu tries to pick it up for her but accidentally kicks it away and a truck goes over it. He’s just trouble, isn’t he? Because Barnaby isn’t in good mood, Kotetsu thinks he is depressed about his birthday. He wants Karina, Nathan and Antonio to throw a surprise birthday bash but they’re not interested seeing that they’re rivals. But when Keith Goodman (Sky High) agrees in doing so, the rest wholeheartedly joins in! He even said the same words Kotetsu did! Kotetsu needs to get Barnaby a present and bugs him what kind of fashion clothes he wants. Annoying. Finally he just says he wants that diamond currently being displayed at the Central Museum. Seriously? But a fat baddie, Pauly is eyeing on that diamond. Yup. He’s a NEXT who can change his skin into hard diamond. Kotetsu is out with Bunny. Bunny the stuffed doll! Haha! He’s even doing falsetto voiceovers for Bunny! They’re supposed to catch some robbers when one snatches Kotetsu’s handbag. Chasing him and cornering him at an alley, they are cornered but several robbers and their boss. The robbers fire their gun and “Happy Birthday” banners came out. So, this is their birthday surprise? The gang dressing up as robbers? Yeah, they feel pretty confident in pulling it off. While Pauly manages to steal the diamond, Kotetsu calls Barnaby to meet him. He does but isn’t interested in playing along, putting a damper on their plans. The ‘robber’ snatches Kotetsu’s bag and Barnaby still isn’t interested. They lose sight of him when they bump into a woman and her trolley. Kotetsu still doesn’t give up and drags Barnaby to find the ‘robber’ at the alley. Unknown to them, they meet the real Pauly in cloak but Kotetsu believes he is part of the play. Of course things didn’t go as plan as Pauly fires a real bullet, barely breeze past them. Then he escapes via getaway car by his henchmen. When Barnaby learns of this surprise thingy, he chides Kotetsu for meddling once more. Soon a call from Agnes to go into action. Barnaby says he will handle this one himself and under the notion that they’re not a team. Sky High, Blue Rose and Fire Emblem apprehend the underlings but Sky High say to leave the big fish to the duo since it’s their special day. Due to Tiger’s blunder, Pauly knows their power is running out soon. He lets them punch his diamond body all they want. With time running out, suddenly a part of Tiger and Barnaby’s limb transform into a bigger and super cool power up as they smash and crack Pauly together. They thought this amazing feature called Good Luck Mode boosted their power but was being told that it was their teamwork that finished the job. The feature is only for them to look cool! Of course the duo still deny that they are working together. Tiger lets Barnaby arrest Pauly as his birthday present. He wants the points, right? Sure, Barnaby may still be mouthing off about his meddling thingy but he still took Pauly in. What happened to the bunny? Antonio got arrested because the cops think he’s the real robber.

Episode 6
Remember those criminals Barnaby arrested when he first debuted? They’re sitting nicely in jail but they get suddenly burnt by a mysterious flame! WOAH! Barnaby is in a photo shoot. Kotetsu reads the newspaper and learns those criminals are dead. However Barnaby’s indifferent attitude to death has Kotetsu raising his voice. Criminal or not, it’s a person’s life. But Barnaby isn’t happy he is shoving his values down his throat. Lloyds gets a call and sends Kotetsu over since he is ‘free’. Tiger is getting burnt by Fire Emblem’s intense heat. Seems they are doing an experiment and recreating a scenario of that murder seeing Fire Emblem has been suspected as the killer. No other Hero uses flames like he does, right? Plus, if he’s a suspect, he’ll be suspended from the programme and that’s not good. Tiger isn’t too happy he has to do this over and over again. Can they use a dummy? Well, Saito wanted to show off the durability of this suit. Suddenly a prisoner in the field gets burnt quickly before the other inmates’ eyes. Kotetsu, Nathan and Agnes rush over but he is badly burnt. Kotetsu thinks he spotted the culprit but looks like he slipped away. Barnaby is going around asking people about a certain mark known as Ouroboros. He has been doing this ever since young after his parents were killed but of course nobody knows of it. This is why he hates fire and he can’t remember the culprit’s face who killed his parents before his eyes. The only clue is that mark on his hand. After Nathan drops Kotetsu off a few blocks from home, Kotetsu is suddenly attacked by a mecha. He runs for his life and tries calling Saito for his Hero suit but he doesn’t reply. As for Barnaby, he thinks this is one of Kotetsu’s pranks. I take it he’s not coming. Amazingly Kotetsu managed to escape the hail of bullets and catch up to Nathan. Then arguing for that fire guy to use his powers, the mecha reduces Nathan’s car into smithereens! Just when they thought it was out of bullets, it then spews flames. Could this be the murderer? Nathan isn’t amused that there is a more powerful fire weapon than his. He distracts the mecha so Kotetsu could rip it off. Inside it, someone piloting it. Hey, isn’t that the repairman? Once Barnaby arrives, the culprit uses a flash bomb to escape. As they discuss, seems Kotetsu can’t remember from where he has seen this guy! Unbelievable! Wondering why Saito didn’t answer his call, he mentions about being trapped in an elevator (he’s claustrophobic it seems). This has Kotetsu remembering who he is. Barnaby realizes his intention is to wipe out those who have seen his face. This means Agnes and her cameramen are in danger. As they rush to the scene, true enough, the repairman attacks Agnes. The Heroes arrive in time to save her as Barnaby puts him out of commission. Then he sees the Ouroboros mark on the back of his neck and gets rough on him while interrogating him but he doesn’t answer. Because Tiger and Fire Emblem tried to calm him down, the culprit takes Agnes as hostage. Tiger wants to know why he killed those prisoners but he has no idea what he is talking about. But he may not be that murderer because a mysterious figure from afar burns him and vanishes in the blink of an eye.

Episode 7
Barnaby becomes enraged and tries to go after the culprit but loses sight of him. He blames Tiger for stopping him back then. He can’t calm down seeing that Ouroboros killed his parents. Back in the trailer, Barnaby is visually upset. But there is nothing more he knows about Ouroboros. He wants to be left alone. Next day, Nathan shows Kotetsu a newspaper article on Barnaby’s parents’ death, the reason for him acting this way. Nathan deduces if Ouroboros is a crime syndicate, then it may be trying to wipe out its members to silence them seeing all the burnt victims are criminals. They can’t contact Barnaby because he can’t be reached. Even Lloyds is puzzled on his behaviour and never thought that this super star could get cranky. So I guess Tiger has to team up with Blue Rose to take out another bunch of criminals, save the hostage and then later a charity concert (Blue Rose steals the show in all aspects by the way). As Tiger takes a break, a kid comes up to him unhappy why he arrests criminals instead of killing them. Yeah, for nothing Tiger gets his shin kicked. Later Maverick visits Kotetsu to show his appreciation (at least somebody appreciates that veteran). He brings him to Saito who has finished creating a prototype oxygen chamber for them to test out. Barnaby is also here since Maverick called him and he couldn’t turn down his saviour’s request. Maverick understands how frustrated Barnaby is but if he gives up now, he won’t achieve his goal. Both the Heroes enter the chamber to rest. Barnaby wakes up from yet another nightmare of seeing his parents killed. Again he can’t see the murderer’s face. But it seems this time there is a call for the Heroes to go into action. This isn’t show time but the real deal. A group of criminals hiding out at an abandoned church. Agnes and her crew got approval to work with the police and shoot live footage so as to increase their studio’s reputation. While standing by, Tiger tells Barnaby what Nathan told him. Before Agnes could give the signal, the mysterious figure pops up and burns the church and blacks out the area. Barnaby loses his cool and goes after him while Tiger assures him that everyone else has this place covered. The initial goal to arrest the criminals has turned into one that saves them. However the flame was too intense so none of the criminals survived. Barnaby continues to chase hard but it seems the NEXT guy is toying with him. Then he speaks all over the city. Saying how their form of justice is weak and frail. They can’t save or punish anyone. Introducing himself as Lunatic, seeing that their justice is fake, he will follow his own code of justice. Once Barnaby catches up to him, the first thing he asks if he is part of Ouroboros. He didn’t give a definite answer but if he was, what is he going to do about it? They say action speaks louder than words. Yeah, Barnaby goes straight to tear him apart. He was about to finish off Barnaby when Tiger uses his strings to bind him. Tiger ticks him off about his sense of justice which makes him no different to committing massacre. Lunatic isn’t amused and will remember him as he breaks free and disappears. Barnaby thought it’s over but Tiger says they still have hope. One of the criminals is still breathing thanks to Rock Bison reviving him. Kotetsu and Barnaby are at the hospital and though they find out the crime syndicate isn’t Ouroboros, all they have to do is wait till he regains consciousness and interrogate him. The judge from the Justice Bureau, Yuri Petrov comes out of the ward. He doesn’t mind the trouble doing these kind of things and would like to know if there is anything he can help them with. Say, doesn’t he sound very close to that Lunatic guy…

Episode 8
Because of Lunatic’s act of killing murderers, the people are starting to like him and doubt the Heroes’ capabilities. All the Hero agency’s CEOs and Yuri meet in an emergency meeting to deal with this problem. Maverick suggests winning back public support and rebuild the trust in Heroes via Hero Campaign. That’s right. The Heroes are doing public charity work and as for Tiger, Barnaby and Origami Cyclone, they’re visiting the Hero Academy. When taking a break, Kotetsu is surprised that Ivan Karelin (Origami Cyclone) is a lot more negative than his Hero self. Then the principal comes in to see his ex-students, Barnaby and Ivan and is glad they are doing fine. Tiger and Barnaby give motivational speeches to their respective groups. Erm… Points are important to a Hero? Destroying building is okay so long you protect the people? But Origami’s speech on pleasing the sponsors did not sit well with the students. Later Ivan sees several students demonstrating their weird powers to Tiger. Erm… Sweat a lot? Able to stretch cheeks or neck? I doubt they can be Heroes with this kind of power. Looking more like circus freaks! Ivan remembers back when he was a student in this academy and his best friend Edward had all the ingredients to be a Hero unlike him. Ivan calls Kotetsu to demonstrate his powers: To shape shift into other people. However he laments he can only copy their looks but not their powers and isn’t cut out to be a Hero. Kotetsu is sure there is something his power is capable of handling but Ivan notes how his best friend once said that to him. He still thinks Edward should’ve been a Hero and not him. Later Kotetsu talks to the principal to find out more on Edward. Though he was a top student, there was an incident that left a very bitter memory for them. There was hostage incident and Edward wanted to save the lady though Ivan was scared and didn’t want to since it is against academy rules to use their powers outside. But Edward couldn’t wait and sneaks up on the baddie and grabs his gun. A struggle ensues as Edward calls for Ivan’s help. Before he knows it, Edward accidentally shoots at the hostage. Since then, he has been to prison and ineligible to become a Hero. So is he still there? Actually, he escaped a few days ago. Speaking of which, he appears right in front of Ivan and is going to kill him, blaming him for ruining his life. Luckily Kotetsu and Barnaby arrive in time so Edward backs off. Ivan feels he should’ve died to make Edward feel better since it’s his fault for ruining his life and guilty for not helping him back then. In that case, Kotetsu tells him he has to stop him since he committed a crime because of him. Is he going to let it happen again? This was enough to motivate Ivan to find Edward. It isn’t long before they find each other (he’s trying to kill him, remember?). However a warning shot from Lunatic streaks across them. Lunatic is going to punish Edward for escaping from prison without repenting. Fearful Edward flees for his life but is cornered. Ivan needs to do something drastic to save him. He morphs into Edward and tries to convince he is the real one. Since Lunatic doesn’t do mindless slaughter, he asks this ‘Edward’ if he is willing to repent. He does. Lunatic points his weapon to the real Ivan because he knows true sinners are cowards. Ivan rushes to Edward and asserts he will protect him. Thus Lunatic is going to kill him too since he is defending a criminal. Tiger and Barnaby arrive in time to battle him. Though he mentions his mission to bring atonement upon evildoers, seems he is not with Ouroboros. Tiger takes a shot meant for Barnaby and even manages to land a punch on Lunatic’s face! Lunatic doesn’t want to quarrel with Heroes and asserts his own justice of giving murderers what they deserve. So Tiger says in that case, his justice is to arrest idiots like him. Amused, he shall see where his sense of justice leads him and escapes. In the aftermath, Edward is taken into custody but thanks Ivan for saving him. Ivan becomes more motivated to doing more Hero-like things. And yeah, Lunatic is that Yuri guy.

Episode 9
The manager of Huang Pao Lin (Dragon Kid) thinks she should put up more charm and be more feminine. Of course she is quite tomboyish nevertheless to say and didn’t like the flower hair accessory gift her parents just sent. Kotetsu gets an emergency call to meet at the training centre by Agnes. Actually, he is put in charge of babysitting the mayor’s baby, Sam. Why not hire a real babysitter? Recently there are thugs who target wealthy family so he thinks of leaving it in the hands of Heroes. Well, Kotetsu’s got a 9 year old daughter so I guess that’s why he was called in. His wife? Unfortunately, an illness took her 5 years ago. However Sam not only starts crying when Kotetsu gets near him, everything seems to start flying! Oh, Sam is a NEXT too and has telekinetic powers. The other Heroes try to pacify him but he only stops crying in the arms of Pao Lin. How unexpected. Kotetsu and Pao Lin temporarily stay at Barnaby’s place. Just when Sam throws another tantrum, Barnaby saves a precious toy his parents gave him. He then gives it to Sam to play. Kotetsu teases the flower pattern so Pao Lin isn’t amused. Barnaby advises she should treasure the things her parents give her. Then another tantrum drops the controller to reveal all the newspaper cuttings Barnaby has amassed on his parents’ murderer. But Barnaby turns it off quickly. After Pao Lin and Sam are asleep, Barnaby shows Kotetsu those data and has been desperate for the last 20 years. When a criminal with that mark was sentenced to 250 years in prison, the only reply Barnaby got was Ouroboros. However he gone mad and died in prison so he lost his only lead and he still can’t remember the murderer’s face. Kotetsu tells him he should relax because you can’t remember something just because you want to remember it. Because the guys have been sleeping in the hallway and reeking of alcohol, Pao Lin decides to take Sam out for a walk. She got kidnapped by a bunch of sisters. Agnes drops by to see how the baby is doing (it’s the mayor’s baby so they better be doing a fine job). The kidnappers want Pao Lin to contact her parents so when they made the call, Agnes picks up and they think she is Pao Lin’s mom. She is to bring a million bucks to some warehouse if they want to see them alive. Barnaby has a plan. Agnes will act as the mother since they only heard her voice and the guys will barge in to save Pao Lin and the baby. Two of the sisters meet Agnes but they can smell she is a fake. They escape so the guys try to chase after them. Meanwhile Pao Lin learns that the sisters are behind the spate of kidnappings, though they prefer the term babysitters but with high fees. The sisters are NEXT and have a type of smell sense as their power. One of them could smell money, the other sniff out lies while big sister can sense danger. Big sisters mention how the marigold pattern on Sam’s cap represents health and knows the child is loved very much and thus will pay any amount to secure their release. Pao Lin reflects all the gifts her parents sent to her and realizes their importance. Big sister senses danger in Pao Lin when she tries to break loose with her lightning powers. Her other sisters come running back and they need to escape. They want to leave Pao Lin behind and take the baby but that’s when Sam starts crying. So loud that it causes the warehouse to burst into flames! They don’t trust Pao Lin to take off her cuffs to pacify Sam so she busts out herself to rescue the baby. Then she scares big sister so much that she passes out! Her sisters then surrender. The guys arrive too late but no worries since everything has been taken care off. Barnaby sees Tiger and his position with the fire in the background reminded him of the scene how his parents were killed. He got so traumatized that he breaks through the roof. Sam is handed back to his parents (I thought daddy look like Obama) in good hands. Kotetsu notices Pao Lin wearing her flower hair accessory. She looked up its meaning and discovered it meant “thinking about you always”. Kotetsu calls Kaede and wonders if she is wearing the hair clip he sent her. Yup it is being worn every day. By grandma. So disappointed… And Barnaby thinks hard to remember that killer’s face and we may have a glimpse of how this mad guy looks.

Episode 10
Kotetsu calls Kaede and you know, she’s not happy he is treating her like a kid. Well as grandma said, she’s upset probably she lost her favourite stuffed animal. Lloyds gives Kotetsu a surprise paid vacation since they don’t want to be seen in violating labour laws. But Heroes never take a day off! He can quit if he doesn’t like it. Oh yeah, Barnaby will be holding the fort then. So with his day off, Kotetsu goes to the toy store and was convinced by the store staff to buy some ugly stuffed teddy bear called Mad Bear for Kaede. Barnaby is doing research on serial killers when he stumbles upon the profile of Jake Martinez. Suddenly his face becomes clear to him and realizes that he is the murderer. He was apprehended by Mr Legend and now serving time at Abas Prison. Kotetsu drives along the bridge and as usual, Kaede knows he isn’t really coming back even if he insists he is. Plus, she even knows what kind of present he bought her and doesn’t want that ugly toy! So looks like Kotetsu has to break his promise once more when the bridge ahead suddenly explodes. Yeah, looks like his paid vacation is off and now he has to go into action. Heroes never take a day off, remember? As for Barnaby, he is heading to Abas Prison so Kotetsu allows him to go and will take care things here with the other Heroes. But the Heroes find themselves confronting heavily armed mechs in what it looks like a terrorist attack. Do Heroes handle this kind of war too? Tiger destroys one of the mechs and finds a Mad Bear piloting it! Plus, the bear is moving by itself! Seems a NEXT lady is controlling it and she has that Ouroboros mark around her place. More and more bombings occur throughout the city as the Heroes spread out but are overwhelmed by the sheer attack. Agnes is in a dilemma whether to continue or cut the broadcast as the crew don’t want another repeat whereby people lose confidence in the Heroes like Lunatic’s case. But Maverick tells them to continue since they have to believe in the Heroes. What good will it do if they don’t trust them? Though the Heroes are having a hard time, the people watching are cheering them on. Tiger is having it tough, out of power, trying to save a lady trapped in her car from being dropped into the sea and fending off those firing mechs. Somehow he manages to pull it off but is sent falling into the sea. He is saved by Barnaby (probably he was moved after seeing his fearless feat on screen). Seems Barnaby has learnt Jake has been sentenced to 250 years in prison so he can see him any time. Before the duo can get into action, the Mad Bears eject from their seat and explode in mid-air, releasing cards bearing Ouroboros mark. A blimp passes by and a voice, Kriem announces she has control of the city’s major traffic routes and has been completely cut off. In short, the 20 million citizens are now their hostage and in exchange for their lives, she wants her fellow comrade in prison to be released: Jake. Otherwise, they will destroy half the support pillars and sink the city. So much for the hard work in finding out the murderer and then suddenly this sh*t happens. And that Jake guy happily finishes his forest mural in his cell. See the death symbol between in the picture?

Episode 11
All the Heroes are on standby as the mayor and his committee meet to discuss their next step. Suddenly those mechs destroy one of the pillars. This is a warning from Kriem that she hasn’t heard a favourable answer from them and the next attack in an hour will be severe. Agnes orders Sky High and Blue Rose to evacuate the public but Kotetsu doesn’t want to wait any longer, ignoring her orders. The mayor is really panicking and unable to make any decision so Maverick says to release Jake to ensure the public’s safety. He will take full responsibility. Kotetsu and Barnaby barge in to tell them off about protecting their own self-interests (Kotetsu can’t pronounce that word?) and to make saving people’s lives top priority. However an Ouroboros members, Hans Chuckman comes in with a hostage and forces the mayor to make a decision or else. The mayor soon announces the release of Jake as he walks away coolly out of prison to Kriem and the helicopter piloted by Chuckman. However this is part of the big plan. You see, the real Chuckman has been beaten up and tied up. It is Origami who is posing as that pilot. Barnaby takes it out on Chuckman but was told to calm down by Kotetsu. Jake is suspicious of Chuckman so Kriem introduces him. Though he is not a NEXT, he believes in their cause. It doesn’t help this ‘Chuckman’ is sweating and nervous. As Kriem is going to order the release of the hostage, Jake tells her to hold the bus as he realizes her method of getting him released. 30 minutes later, the mechs haven’t been withdrawn yet. Then Jake pops up on screen and he isn’t going to release the hostages. I mean, if he’s got their lives under his thumb, he can request them to do anything, right? The press hounds the mayor for answers but he has entrusted everything to Maverick (since it was his idea and he volunteered). Maverick then holds a press conference and tells the people to direct their anger at Jake instead. He also reveals a Hero patiently waiting to fight these terrorists: Barnaby. Flashback reveals Maverick called Barnaby to reveal his past to the public so as to get them inspired. With Barnaby acknowledging everything from his parents’ death are true, the public rallies behind and supports him. Origami has infiltrated Jake’s hideout and reports back to his mates. The hard part now is to look into the secret behind those powered exosuits. Shortly after he terminates contact, Jake approaches him and starts asking him things. Then he shows a picture of a Hero and if it is his power ‘Chuckman’ would like to have. Of course Origami is unable to give a straight answer because the Hero Jake showed him is Origami.

Episode 12
Jake knows this guy is a fake and nullifies Origami’s power. He tries to escape but do you think anyone can from this guy? Thanks to Origami, the Heroes now know Jake’s location as they prepare on standby. Barnaby offers to scout the hideout first alone. Tiger wants to come along but Barnaby wants him to trust him on this one. When Barnaby arrives, he sees Jake in the warehouse and powers up. However Tiger grabs Jake away and tells him to calm down. Unfortunately this is a trap set by Jake as the ‘Jake’ Tiger caught is Origami. Jake demonstrates his power by shooting out beams by the snap of his finger. Man, it’s a big explosion! In the end, Jake got away. Barnaby lashes out at Tiger for interrupting. He knew it was Origami all along and had waited for this chance and now it’s up in smoke. Just when he thought he could trust him as he partner, this happened. He won’t trust anyone who doesn’t trust him. Well, it’s Kotetsu’s bad this time. All the while he’s been talking about being a team but in the end he didn’t have faith in him. Maverick thinks their only choice now is to release Chuckman and use him as a decoy to track Jake. But that won’t be necessary because Jake busts into the room and reveals that he has killed Chuckman for he needs not a weakling who gets easily captured. He is here to deliver a message. Seeing that NEXTs are being uses by inferior beings and to an extent reduced to a side show, he is going to wreck them all on behalf of NEXT for such embarrassment. He is going to organize a little show. Soon broadcasted to the public, Jake is going to host a series of 7 matches. The rules are simple. A random Hero will be picked to fight Jake one on one. If the Hero wins, he’ll call off the mechs. Otherwise the city collapses. The first hero drawn is Sky High. As he arrives in the stadium, Jake continues to be cocky, bored and rude to the Hero. Sky High unleashes a barrage of wind projections at Jake. It seem Jake has taken the hits but with a flick of his finger, Sky High is sent flying away. Well, Jake didn’t get hit at all because all Sky High’s attacks are deflected by his barrier. Once again, the blame goes to Tiger for giving the wrong info and jumping to conclusions about his beam because in fact he doesn’t shoot them but makes barriers which he uses to attack. Sky High is chained high up a monument as the people start losing their confidence that their King of Heroes lost. Next is Rock Bison. He is going to use his strength to break through but he lost instantly! Same hanging fate as Sky High. Next is Tiger but Jake didn’t want this dipshit so he picks another one and to his surprise is Barnaby. Meanwhile Origami is in hospital and tells the committee how the mechs are being controlled. Something about they are following orders from Kriem via communicator. This means they need time to set up jamming signals. Seems Tiger go to face Jake. He thought he could take him down with speed but he is mistaken. Then he runs out of power as he wonders why he can’t land a hit. Jake says he can hear everything. But Tiger continues to fight despite without any power. In a fluke shot, because before Tiger goes temporarily unconscious, is able to land a kick on Jake’s head! Because of that, Jake becomes furious and pounds him till he is unconscious! Agnes then persuades Jake to take a break for TV rating purposes and resume tomorrow morning. This is so that they have enough time to place the jamming signals. Actually Agnes is in awe with the high ratings… Morning comes, Jake ups the ante by saying since they are halfway through the show, if this Barnaby guy loses, he’ll level half the city. As for Tiger, he is being rushed to ICU. I wonder why he wasn’t dangled like the rest.

Episode 13
Well, it seems Sky High and Rock Bison are in the hospital ward too. Jake makes an ambush for Barnaby. But Barnaby didn’t use his power and gets beaten up by Jake. He can’t even touch him. Agnes contacts Blue Rose, Fire Emblem and Dragon Kid as they must race to the mechs and destroy them as the jamming signal will soon be up. Kotetsu wants to go to but was being told off by Blue Rose that he will only be a nuisance. Instead, he should think of a way to help his partner defeat Jake. The jamming signal activates so the trio go into action. However when they touch the mechs, they go into self-defence mode and attack them. This is going to take a while. Because Jake is rather bored and disappointed after pounding Barnaby numerous times (he’s still able to get up?), he hints to Barnaby that God has bequeathed him 2 powers. This has Kotetsu think and remembering what Jake said to him, he realizes his mind reading power. Because he needs to tell this to Barnaby, his determination was so great that he activated his powers to heal his wounds fast! Then he goes to Saito for a favour. Everything now rests on Barnaby because if they fail, the entire city may be destroyed if Jake finds out their plan. Barnaby is knocked to the top of the roof. He is about to give up on his fate when he is surprised to see Tiger. He tells him Jake’s second power as super good hearing and hands him an ultrasound grenade to wreck his ears. Barnaby still doesn’t trust him and will do it his own way. But no time to bicker because Jake wants that bunny to come back NOW! Jake could ‘hear’ Barnaby’s thoughts about his super hearing and knows he is way off. Barnaby throws the grenade so confident Jake avoids it and blasts Barnaby followed by the grenade. However it is a decoy as the grenade gives out a bright light. Tiger yells to Barnaby that this is his chance now. Barnaby is able to land him a powerful kick right up to the roof and break his ribs! Barnaby is about to strangle him to death but after seeing Tiger, he releases him and would rather have him repent for his sins. Barnaby isn’t amused Tiger lied to him but if he had told him the truth that it was a stun grenade or Jake’s ability to read minds, Jake would’ve found that out too. Plus, he realized it when Jake called Tiger by his real name then, something which he never revealed to the public. Still, Barnaby isn’t amused because there is a chance he might not have trusted him. Tiger’s answer? He believed he would trust him. That’s a big gamble but hey, that is what trust is, right? Kriem is going to have them release Jake and escape in her helicopter. True to their villain status, they’re not going to let the city free. Unfortunately for them, our other Heroes have finally taken out the mechs. Jake panics and tries to jump into the helicopter but Tiger binds him with his wire. Jake tries to free himself and shoots his barrier but it hits the helicopter as it goes crashing onto him. Well, a befitting end for this evil-doer. In the end everyone praises Barnaby’s name and the city is safe. It’s back to the hot-cold relationship of Tiger and Barnaby. But it is slightly better now because for the first time Barnaby calls Tiger by his real name.

Episode 14
It’s been 10 months since the terrorist incident. Tiger and Barnaby are now appearing on a special TV programme to acknowledge their achievements. Lot has happened. Barnaby took 1st place while Tiger got 4th in last year’s Hero TV season. They prevented Lunatic from taking more casualties. Kriem is in custody but has yet to make any statement (she jumped out of the helicopter then but is in coma). Tiger and Barnaby are so close to each other that they praised each other instead of themselves! Blue Rose is punching the bag harder than usual so Fire Emblem can tell that she’s jealous or missed that old guy. She sounds like a tsundere denying it all but Fire Emblem knows the complicated heart of a woman. Since Blue Rose is going to debut her next single with Tiger and Barnaby, she has to teach them how to dance! Seriously?! Well Tiger would rather quit being a Hero than do this but as Lloyds said, HE CAN’T QUIT NOW! Oh, how Lloyds has changed. Tiger shows her his robotic dance moves that sucks but his intention was to make her laugh. In school, she is confused and wondering if she’s in love but even so, that guy is a doofus. A friend of hers confirms she is but the other one doesn’t think so (because she is afraid that Karina may screw up herself since she isn’t honest to her feelings). Kotetsu and Barnaby practise their dance with Karina but as usual Kotetsu is a beat off and takes a break. She wonders his attitude so Barnaby lets her know that after working with him, he realized he is a man who thinks about others before himself. He believes he’ll get it right before the concert. Kotetsu returns with a new towel for Karina because he accidentally spilled his coffee previously. Not that she likes it but since she has no towel, I guess she accepts (tsundere!). Then he asks her if she is free tonight. Could it be? Turns out that he wants her to give him private practice on his dance. Disappointed? Kotetsu thought she’s upset because her boyfriend would think she’s hanging out with an old guy (he meant it as a joke). But she denies having any boyfriend and goes off. Definitely tsundere. On the day of the concert, Agnes introduces Tiger and Barnaby to a group of amateur Heroes. Due to the popularity of the Heroes, the league has been split into 2. The first division whereby the veteran Heroes will tackle major crimes while the second division with new Heroes will take on minor ones. So happen there is a backstage thief and they are having a hard time catching him. Why not? He is a NEXT with invisibility powers and snuck into Blue Rose’s room to steal her handbag. Yeah, he cross-dressed as her and looked so horrible. After the concert (it was funny to see the guys in the suit dance), the newbies report that Blue Rose’s room has been ransacked. Tiger and Barnaby will also help search for the criminal and this will go on air. What about the encore? Tiger says retrieving her back comes first. She realizes inside the bag is the towel and remembering her friends words, tears stream down her cheeks as she realizes she is really in love with him. Tiger and Barnaby come back and soon they realize strange movements in the room. Like as though there is a ghost. They realize the culprit and chase after him. Tiger uses his power to go after him and wants Barnaby to reserve his in case anything happens. During the chase, Tiger notices his powers greater than usual as he is faster, stronger and could jump further. He is confident in catching the thief but he loses power even though he has 30 seconds left on his timer. In the end it was Rock Bison that nails the sicko. Barnaby and Blue Rose think Tiger was being kind as always, pretending to lose power so that Rock Bison could get the credit. Plus, Rock Bison was undergoing depression seeing he finished in last place last season and his manager was thinking about firing him. Of course Tiger knows he didn’t do it on purpose but Barnaby praises him for his amazing work and Blue Rose will forever cherish this towel. Huh? While Kotetsu drinks with Antonio, he thinks his powers may be evolving.

Episode 15
Keith is feeling down because of his recent drop in rankings due to Tiger and Barnaby’s boost in popularity. While taking his dog, John out for a walk, he meets a white haired lady sitting on a park bench, Cis. You can tell from her body language and speech she is not normal. Keith gives her an apple but she crushes it. He thinks she’s a NEXT who just found out about her powers and has difficulty controlling them. Meanwhile Kotetsu is pumped up thinking about his power evolution. But he and Barnaby are having tight busy schedules. So tight their schedule that they do a photo swimsuit and an interview together! Kotetsu didn’t like doing all these stuff having to smile in front of the camera and not doing their Hero job. But Barnaby feels he prefers it this way since it’s better than living a life of revenge. Plus, isn’t it a good thing since they aren’t called up by Hero TV. Which means no crime, right? Nathan, Karina and Pao Lin think Keith’s depression is due to his slump but he reveals it’s more of love. They find it hard to believe. So our trio ladies (yes, Nathan considers himself to be one) give him their love advice on how to tackle a woman’s heart. Smile, compliment and physical touch. He did all but Cis wasn’t really moved (literally too). Tiger and Barnaby are in an interview conducted by kids. The little ones aren’t interested in Tiger’s boring answer about his most admired person (Mr Legend, by the way). But Barnaby’s answer how he looked up to his scientist parents who create robots to save people caught their attention. On their way to another interview, Kotetsu is surprised Hero TV is on but they are not called. Lloyds mentions their busy schedule and had permission for them to be exempted. Plus, they have those amateurs so it’s nothing to worry, right? Oh, Hero TV ends with Sky High in a big blooper. How the heck did he have his head stuck into a wall? Didn’t see where he was going? That night Keith sees Cis at the same spot in the park again and pours out his woes and complaints and his dip in form. But Cis only replies “Why?”, forcing Keith to realize that he was just giving excuses. After he leaves, Cis’ acquaintance Rotwang finds her and picks her up. Kotetsu and Barnaby are cruising along the highway when a billboard nearly smashed into them! Looks like Cis is destroying a poster of Tiger and Barnaby. The duo save Rotwang before he gets pummelled by Cis and while powering up to fight her, they realize she is an advanced android as her ‘skin’ disintegrates to reveal her steely exterior. Cis is even stronger than the duo. Rotwang explains that he is her creator and is making androids that will surpass NEXT. As for going after Heroes, that is a malfunction. In order to surpass them, she has data on all the Heroes. A few days ago as he was transporting them, a lightning strike their truck and she ‘escaped’ when the truck crashed. Thus her system appears to have been damaged by the electrical shock. Rotwang thanks Barnaby for his parents because he based Cis on their research and believes they would be proud of it. But Barnaby refuses to believe that this is what his parents want. Rotwang warns that unless they destroy Cis, she will continue to destroy the city since it is filled with Hero posters. Yeah, anything Hero, just smash! Tiger’s power runs out before the due time so as Barnaby chases her, Sky High catches her and drawing his inspiration from Cis, he breaks her into 2. With that, he gets his confidence back and it’s the reverse for Tiger (who is wondering about his power’s instability) and Barnaby (about his parents’ wish). Keith is going to thank Cis and buys a big bouquet of rose. He arrives at the park and obviously she is not there anymore but he continues to sit around. Waiting or does he already know? Lastly, Ben is working as a taxi driver as he meets up with Kotetsu. He seems to know his power boost and drain. The problem? His powers are declining. Though rare, some NEXT gradually lose their powers. Before that happens, they become more powerful. His not joking, right? Has Kotetsu ever looked this worried?

Episode 16
Flashback sees how Yuri killed his drunk abusive father when he couldn’t stop beating his mom. That’s when his powers awakened. Tiger and Barnaby are chasing after a criminal but they come face to face with Lunatic. However he didn’t put up a fight and escapes when the duo manage to prevent him from causing another death. There goes the ratings. At least for Agnes… At the party, Maverick makes a congratulatory speech that Barnaby has broken Mr Legend’s record of raking up the most points for this quarter. Yeah, he’s the runaway leader on the scoreboard. Noticing Kotetsu down, Barnaby talks to him and thanks him for his support. He also lets him know how Maverick is like a father figure to him since he and his parents were very good friends. Maverick always took care of him whenever his parents were busy doing research. Even after they are murdered, he took him in and raised him up as his own child. To the extent of suggesting him becoming a Hero despite knowing he was out for revenge. He is grateful to him and now his new dream is to make a Hero world that Maverick built become bigger and more exciting. Kotetsu’s dream? Get his kid to say he’s cool. Well, only if she knew who he was in the first place. Yuri remembers another of those abusive days from his dad. Seems his mom is living with him but she is acting as though daddy is still around. When Yuri reminds her dad is dead, she becomes violent and blames him for killing him. She was certain that he would turn over a new leaf. Instantly she becomes afraid when Yuri gives her a scary look and she fears he will kill him. Kotetsu kept the time on his declining powers. Sad to say, the limit is getting faster and faster. He gets a call from Ben to meet. He has discovered something shocking. Seems Mr Legend also experienced the same power declining thing. What about his record then? All other Heroes were told to collaborate so that Mr Legend will get all the credit. Records that didn’t make him look good were erased (the reason there weren’t any on Jake). Mr Legend didn’t like this idea too so he drowned his sorrows in alcohol. Ben wants him to think about his future and though he doesn’t want him to quit but he can’t be doing this forever. Kotetsu is adamant that he still can go on. Oh, here is another shocker: Mr Legend is Yuri’s father!!!!! I guess everything make sense, eh? Yuri sees a vision of his dad as Mr Legend and being asked if he was right in killing him. Yuri asserts that he is punishing evil-doers. Kotetsu hears a lady screaming for help. He goes to help her before the serial lady killer (literally), Benoit Depardieu could kill her. Realizing he’s a Hero, he tosses the lady away so Kotetsu could go save her and buy himself time to escape. But Kotetsu is able to save her and catch up with Benoit. Unfortunately his powers run out so he gets mocked by Benoit to quit being a Hero if he can’t catch an ordinary person. Kotetsu is sent falling below and the pile of garbage bags break his fall. Benoit is going to choose another target when Lunatic appears to put an end to his killings. Benoit feigns surrendering but each time foiled but when he truly wishes to surrender, he realizes Lunatic isn’t a Hero and bam! He’s dead. Kotetsu sees the news of Benoit’s death but the latter’s words of quitting rings in his head.

Episode 17
Kotetsu manages to get a paid leave from Lloyds to return to his countryside hometown. Barnaby will be okay handling things by himself and wants him to spend time with his daughter. Besides, she’s one of her precious fans, isn’t she? Kotetsu returns to his home, nothing much changed. Mom is there but Kaede is out to school. Mom is surprised when he first called saying to come back but I guess she wasn’t THAT happy to see him that she needs to hug and kiss him. Kotetsu looks through Kaede’s drawer and it is filled with pictures of Barnaby! Yikes! Then Kaede returns and she didn’t like daddy going through her stuff. Aside from being called a pervert, he gets ejected from her room. Even during dinner, she isn’t on talking terms. Kotetsu apologizes but she’s not buying it. Time to use his secret weapon: An autographed book of Barnaby! That did the trick! She’s so happy. But that’s about it. Oh, he still has to stay away. Dang. Later he goes talk to his brother, Muramasa at his sake shop. He is reluctant to tell the reason for his return. Eventually he lets him know about his power decline and the dilemma he is facing. Muramasa offers him good advice that he needs to rest because worrying won’t change anything. That’s why he came back, right? Plus, even if he loses his powers, it’s not that his life is over. Kotetsu watches TV and sees Barnaby continue to dominate the scene and rankings. He remembers visiting his wife Tomoe on her death bed. He had to leave due to his Hero’s call but Tomoe wanted him to promise her to be a Hero. And thus he went on his life-saving, building-destroying Hero act when he gets a call about Tomoe’s death. Kotetsu feels he can’t keep his promise anymore. Next morning, he is rudely awakened by Kaede about grandma collapse. Though she did, it wasn’t anything serious as she just hurt her back. Kotetsu tries to assure Kaede that grandma is alright and wants her to go to school but Kaede gets upset and yells he doesn’t understand anything. To top it, she now hates him. Kotetsu prays at Tomoe’s grave and is at a loss on what to do to a 10 year old with raging hormones. Muramasa comes by to tell him the reason about why Kaede was so upset. Grandma is the all she has left. So by losing her, she’ll be all alone. She has been living with that fear every day since she had an experienced with her mom. That’s why she gets upset even at the slightest thing. He isn’t trying to blame Kotetsu for this because he too has his own life to live. Kotetsu goes home, noting he really doesn’t know anything about Kaede when he is shocked to see mom doing gardening! Well, her back pain is gone so I guess you can’t keep a stubborn old woman down, eh? Kaede goes to the shrine on her way back from school to pray for her grandma’s wellbeing. A sudden storm passes by so she seeks shelter inside. A lightning strikes several trees blocking the door and the building is sitting precariously on the edge. Chances of a landslide? Somebody better hurry up and save her! What could possibly go wrong? Oh, no handphone signal. SOMEBODY!!! Of course the grownups sense something wrong so Kotetsu and Muramasa go searching in the rain. Kotetsu then uses his power to hear Kaede’s voice (I didn’t know he had this power). He does and rushes straight there to clear the trees. Unfortunately his power runs out but that didn’t stop daddy from drawing his inner father strength to reunite with his daughter. They emotionally reunite and make-up just in time before the shrine is washed away. Next day, Kotetsu is heading back but will be back soon because he is handing in his resignation and made a promise to Kaede. Leaving by train, Kotetsu realizes Kaede is a NEXT when she runs alongside the train to hand him her drawing of her family. This brings tears to his eyes so he can’t break Tomoe’s promise and feel he still can go on being a Hero.

Episode 18
Kotetsu returns back to the city and his Hero mates are happy he’s back. They sort of missed. It’s just different without him. Even tsundere Karina can’t make excuses about that. But where’s Barnaby? Seems he’s got a call from Justice Bureau that Kriem has awakened from her coma. But Kotetsu gets a call from mom, reminding him to hand in his resignation quick and to come home as soon as possible because Kaede’s NEXT’s power is wrecking the home and anything she touches! Kotetsu then confidently tells Barnaby he’s quitting. A poster of Barnaby, that is. Haha. Then he goes to meet him at the hospital but still can’t bring himself to say it. Then they enter the room to see Kriem. Barnaby asks her about Jake’s motives in killing his parents. First off, she praises Jake for saving her then goes on to reveal her past whereby she was shunned by everyone just because she’s a NEXT. Even her parents didn’t love her. One day she was kidnapped by Jake as ransom but in the end, her parents never turned up with the money. Feeling that she’s better off dead, she wants Jake to kill her. However upon learning she’s a NEXT, he manages to convince her that they are superior beings to humans and the weaklings are just out to crush people like them. He sets her free and that’s when she followed him ever since because he’s the first person who accepted her existence. She blames the duo for interfering or else Jake could still have been alive and living in their ideal world of NEXT. But Kotetsu says that will make them the same as the persecutors on the humans. Her reply that is given since humans are weak. To defend Jake’s honour and to let Barnaby live with this torment for the rest of his life, she tells him that Jake isn’t his parent’s murderer because on that day, she was kidnapped by him. Barnaby is horrified as Kriem continues that they are just a small part of Ouroboros and unplugs all of her life support. After all that spasm, she dies so she could rejoin Jake in the afterlife. Outside, Barnaby is obviously confused and feeling dismal. It’s like back to square one. Kotetsu has no heart to tell about his resignation. He tries to reason that Kriem was lying but Kotetsu mentions there are newspaper articles about her being missing so it’s true. Because Barnaby is still adamant Jake is the killer, Kotetsu takes him to rewatch videos on Jake during the 7 match series. This is to see if that mark is on his palm. Well, there is a clear shot that it isn’t. Barnaby rationales that he might have had surgery to remove but there isn’t any sign that indicates he had one. Barnaby’s mind starts going crazy as now he sees several faces in place of the murderer that includes Maverick, Rotwang and his housemaid, Samantha Taylor. Then Kotetsu’s mom calls again. Hurry up with the resignation already because it seems Kaede now has magnetism powers! She wants him back now to do something about it before something bad happens. But as Kotetsu finally summons his courage to say, Barnaby misinterprets that he wants to leave early because of Kaede’s instable powers. Then he calls Samantha and questions her on the night his parents were murdered. She was in a bed with a cold. Kotetsu didn’t like the way he is interrogating a nice old lady so he hangs up the phone for him. Depressed Barnaby is so confused with his messed up memories, he doesn’t know what to believe in anymore. He drops the bombshell by saying he will quit being a Hero since he isn’t confident in this confused state. My, this is getting more complicating, hasn’t it? So once again Kotetsu begs to Kaede for forgiveness that he can’t return and as usual he gets an earful. He tries to change the subject about her multiple powers but she mentions she only has 1: That is to automatically copy the powers of the NEXT she touches. At least that’s what Muramasa told her. And if he isn’t coming home, she’s not going to talk to him anymore. Hmph! Ah, back to square one here as well. Barnaby’s mind goes crazier when he sees more faces as the murderer. Lunatic, Kotetsu and… Himself? I wonder if he can handle this.

Episode 19
The messed up memories are really getting to Barnaby. He’s feeling so frustrated with the ever changing faces so Kotetsu suggests retracing his steps on that day to help remember the murderer’s face. The duo are at the park where Barnaby spent Christmas Eve with Maverick on the night before his parents were killed. He remembered everything they did so clearly. From buying a Santa hat to taking a picture together. Still, Barnaby breaks down upon knowing he’ll be tormented for the rest of his life. Kotetsu offers to stay by his side and support him till this case is solved. I guess Barnaby is so relieved that he collapses. Kotetsu brings him to hospital as once more Barnaby dreams of that horrifying nightmare. But this time the Ouroboros mark on the murderer’s hand vanishes. Then he wakes up and goes looking for Kotetsu. Kotetsu calls his mom and once again tries to give excuse of his delay to return home. Unfortunately, Kaede is fed up with his lies and tells him off never to come back again. Barnaby overheard all that and wants an explanation. Obviously he knows his partner too well to know about that aging crap and thinking of getting a steady job lie. This is not the Kotetsu we know, right? This has Barnaby conclude that the reason why he wanted to stop him from quitting was so because it would make it more difficult for him to say he’s quitting. Then it’s that issue of “You don’t trust me ah?” again. Barnaby is obviously upset that he believed in him so he tells him off he can quit and can handle everything himself. But he crosses the line when he says things will be better if he retires. Well, Kotetsu slaps him. Better than a manly punch, right? No? Later Barnaby goes to see Maverick and tells him the problem he is facing and that his parents’ murder isn’t solved. He agrees to help research on Ouroboros when Samantha calls to inform him that she remembers what happened on that day. She lets him know of a photo that she stumbled upon and she too is stumped. Barnaby asks Maverick about the day they spent together at the park on Christmas Eve. He assures him he was there but Barnaby shows the picture that Samantha found: It was a picture of young Barnaby and Samantha. Pestering Maverick of why he would go so far to lie, Maverick replies he should be grateful he raised him and didn’t finish him off with his parents. He was impressed with his powers and wanted to make him a Hero. When he first started Hero TV, only his parents supported him in making the Hero suits and all. But ratings weren’t good as people were still sceptical about NEXT. In other to boost ratings and make the Hero business thrive, he teamed up with a crime organization and set up flashy crimes. Then on Christmas Eve, his parents met him and are furious that he was using their nano-metal technology behind their back and giving it to criminals. Their strong sense of justice wanted him to make everything public and atone for his sins. And the rest is of course history. But he wasn’t the murderer in Barnaby’s memories so who did all this fit? You see, Maverick is also a NEXT and is able to plant new memories within people. So now it all makes sense. And he is so confident telling Barnaby everything because well, he’ll forget it soon. As Barnaby is paralyzed in shock, Maverick prepares to alter his memories once more. Kotetsu is hanging out at the bar and sees a special interview whereby Barnaby indirectly praises him for working his ability with great pride and hopes to become like him. And he doesn’t mean being clumsy or rash like him. Get it? Kotetsu calls Barnaby but obviously he isn’t picking up.

Episode 20
Now Maverick may be targeting Kotetsu seeing he learnt that he too was with Barnaby when they went to see Kriem. The other Heroes are worried about Barnaby seeing Agnes called them about Barnaby’s duty to host a dinner. They think it’s Kotetsu’s fault due to his body reaction but he can’t tell about that slapping incident. He is saved by the phone. It is Maverick and he wants to see him in his office immediately in private. Maverick tells Kotetsu about Barnaby’s strange call last night. Something about he can’t trust anything anymore and is missing ever since. Of course tells the truth on what he knows about the unsolved case of Barnaby’s parents’ murderer and their decision to reinvestigate it. Kotetsu sees a matching pin he bought for Barnaby at the park on the carpet but thinks he dropped his and picks it up. Maverick has drugged Kotetsu’s coffee but each time he is going to sip, something stops or distracts him. Frustrating, isn’t it? Then he gets a call from Samantha wanting to show him that photo so Kotetsu leaves. Maverick then makes an important call. Want to bet that call is for a terrorist explosion at a mall? Kotetsu thought he could see Samantha at the office but Lloyds tell him to jump straight into action and will keep Samantha waiting. While the Heroes easily save the people, Samantha has been kidnapped by Maverick’s MIB and thrown into some dark room. Kotetsu rushes back after done with his saving but finds Samantha has left. Barnaby wakes up in Maverick’s villa and his memories have been completely altered. Yup, Jake killed his parents for the money. Kotetsu enters his jeep to find another pin. Then he realizes the one at Maverick’s office belongs to Barnaby. He calls Maverick to tell him about it. But being a fool, he thinks Barnaby was in his office when Maverick wasn’t around. He plans to go to Samantha’s house to see her about the photo. Of course nobody is in so he enters and waits. Wait and wait and wait… With the new events unfolding, Maverick has come up with a new plan. He gathers his staff the Heroes and Agnes to tell them about some super secret project that will make Tiger the star. He also assures them that Barnaby was just tired and currently resting. Without rushing into details, he has everyone toast but then, their drinks are drugged. Maverick goes to see Samantha and burns that photo. He can’t have her bringing up the past. Doing things like this are only going to make him suffer and sometimes there are truths that are best left unknown. Normally he would just alter her memories and let her go live her normal life but he has an important new role for her. Oh no. See that fear on her face? Something tells me she isn’t going to see tomorrow. Morning comes and Kotetsu finds himself dozing off in Samantha’s home and she has not returned. Going back to the office, he sees Lloyds but he doesn’t know who this idiot is. Kotetsu thinks he offended him somehow but Lloyds isn’t joking. Even the security guy doubts who this guy is though Kotetsu has a staff pass. Not even putting up the Tiger mask could convince him. I mean, he’s got lots of fans lately who tried sneaking into the building. Suddenly Hero TV announces that today’s arrest will be the fugitive Kotetsu! There are reports that he murdered Samantha as fingerprints are found all over her home. Now the security believes he is the real Tiger. But he is so scared pointing his gun at him that his hands are shaking. Kotetsu uses his power to escape. Soon the entire city and all other Heroes are hot on his trail as Kotetsu goes into hiding. Barnaby is saddened to hear Samantha’s passing and even worse learning that Kotetsu is the one that killed her. The news even spread to Kotetsu’s hometown and poor mommy and Kaede got the shock of their lives.

Episode 21
Everyone sure now recognizes the murderer. What a way to become famous, eh? And Maverick has all data on Tiger wiped out from the network servers. Kotetsu calls Agnes but she doesn’t believe him and since his position is revealed, Sky High chases after him. Kaede still believes that her dad is innocent so grandma tells her that daddy is a Hero. The Hero named Wild Tiger. Surprised, she looks through some of the magazines and makes sense of some of the events like when he came to save her at the shrine. What is she going to do now? She breaks her piggy bank to head to the city. I hope she has enough change. Meanwhile Yuri tries to look for info on Tiger but it’s either there are no records or access denied. He smells something fishy alright. Maverick sees Barnaby who is feeling much better. He tells him that the new upgraded Hero suit has finished developed for both him and Tiger. Kotetsu bumps into the other Heroes who of course only remember him as a criminal. Plus, nobody knows Tiger’s real identity or his real face (which is partly true in reality). He is cornered by Blue Rose and tries to remind her about that towel he gave. Did it work? Well, the wall behind blew up and he is face to face with… Tiger?! Hey, he’s in a new cool suit. They fight but Kotetsu knows he is no match and makes a run. Suddenly Lunatic pops up and is going to pass judgment on the killer. He creates a wall of fire for Kotetsu to escape.  He reasons by allowing him to be captured by the hands of false justice goes against his justice ideal of passing judgment on those who are truly sinful. Kotetsu disguises as a homeless and is surprised to see the news report. A contradicting statement by Maverick that Barnaby is staying at his place when Maverick told him he didn’t even know his whereabouts. He manages to get a ride in Ben’s taxi. At first he thought Ben too forgot about him but rest assured, he’ll always be his number one fan. To prove that, Ben throws him a suitcase containing his old Tiger outfit. With the buddies giving out a good laugh and remembering the good ol’ times, Kotetsu gets down to serious business. He knows he is being framed and Maverick is behind all these but unsure if the memory lost is done by him or some NEXT. Yeah, that old geezer went as far as putting some impersonator as him. He is going to make them remember who Wild Tiger is and for that plan, he has all the Heroes gather on the rooftop of Apollon Media. Well, almost everyone except Barnaby is here. So hello everyone. Do you remember this old Tiger? Kaede has arrived in the city and is outside her dad’s workplace. She chances upon Maverick and feigns looking for Barnaby but was told he was too busy. Maverick leaves in his limo and Barnaby is with him.

Episode 22
So what is Tiger’s plan? Doing funny trademark poses to get everyone to remember?! Not working. Then he proceeds to tell the memories he had with each one, like that babysitting and hairpin thingy for Dragon Kid, Blue Rose’s ambition to be a singer and that stint at Hero’s Academy with Origami. He also reveals some personal, private and embarrassing habits that they have. Their conclusion? He’s a stalker! Okay, one final try. “Do I look like a someone who would kill?”. Everybody: “Yes”. Haha! You’re screwed. However Blue Rose slightly believes Tiger because if he is the culprit, why is he trying so hard to prove his innocence? But it’s not enough as the Heroes prepare to make an arrest when Kaede enters the scene. She pleads for them not to hurt her dad. Giving out a loud scream, suddenly her NEXT powers are activated. A white ball of light emerges over her and in a flash, the Heroes regain their normal memories back though they are still puzzled on treating Tiger as a criminal. So father and daughter the usual conversation. He apologizes for not telling he was a Hero all along. She doesn’t want to be treated like a kid. Realizing she copied the powers from someone else, he learns that the last person to touch her was Maverick (he patted her head before he left). He tells the other Heroes that Maverick was behind all this and tried to frame him by altering their memories. Perhaps Blue Rose was trying to confess (or say sorry) but Tiger thanks her first for being the only one who tried to believe in him. On the other hand, he chides Rock Bison for trying to really treat him like a criminal. Yeah, he feigns his fuzzy memory. How convenient. Then Barnaby (black bunny?) arrives on scene and he is real mad believing Tiger really killed Samantha. No amount of persuasion would do so it’s up to Kaede to work her magic. Unfortunately, she starts flying. Remember seeing Sky High pat her shoulders? Dang. There goes their only chance. The Heroes try to restrain and reason with him but it’s no good so Tiger teases him to chase after him. Tiger crashes into Saito’s lab to get his new suit (not the upgraded one) but to his surprise, Saito remembers him. Seems everyone who watched the telecast got their memories restored. I guess Barnaby was the only one left in the dark, eh? After suiting up, Tiger and Barnaby go on a high speed chase on their respective bikes. He still tries to remind him about the things they do, the place where they first met but as we all know, it’s futile. They zoom pass the vehicles as everyone recognizes them as the Heroic duo of Tiger and Barnaby. So really, Barnaby was the only one who wasn’t watching. As the Heroes wait for Tiger’s return with Kaede, the imposter Tiger shows up. He doesn’t look friendly. In their Good Luck Mode, Tiger and Barnaby’s epic clash continues as they play chicken over a raised bridge and a ship passing underneath. How epic is this going to get?

Episode 23
Well, Good Luck Mode breaks upon the high impact so it’s back to that good ol’ fists and kicks. In the end, Tiger knocks Barnaby’s helmet off. He doesn’t want to go on anymore and remembers the slap he gave him. Thinking it would jolt his memory back, he gives Barnaby that ‘pain of friendship’. Did it work? Barnaby thought he pulled off that cheap shot when he’s off guard. Now Tiger has turned into a punching bag. Persuasion didn’t work before so why is Tiger trying to reminisce the old times when they first met? I mean, yeah sure, he didn’t like working with this young smart ass but as time passes, he felt natural being his partner. Not even his tears can make that mad bunny stop. Tiger thinks he is done for but the next thing he knew, he’s still alive. How? Well, Tiger called his bunny nickname and Barnaby instantly rebuked how he hated it. That was enough to return him back to normal?! Unbelievable but thank goodness. So relieved that Tiger hugs him and wants to smooch him (just kidding on this last bit). Barnaby apologizes for turning against him and realizes he has been used by Maverick all these years. Ben then comes by in his taxi, worried about Tiger. But you know he is fine. He offers to give them a ride to anywhere but Saito picks them all up in his trailer. Saito mentions he did not develop the upgraded suits. Tiger thinks of having Agnes broadcast Maverick’s true colours but Saito says this isn’t possible. Seems when Saito talked to her, she was still under the impression that Tiger is a baddie. Either she didn’t watch the bright light or she got mind controlled again. Then they receive a call from Maverick himself. He has got all the Heroes in has palm and Kaede too. He wants them to come to Justice Tower. Riding to the top, they confront the imposter Tiger. The real Tiger unmasks him and to their shock, it is an android, H-01. What’s more, it is Rotwang who developed it as he has been working under Maverick. Rotwang is confident they aren’t able to defeat this upgraded H-01 since they have a hard time fighting Cis. Plus, even with the combined effort, all the other Heroes weren’t able to stop it, thus led to their capture. Maverick’s new plan is to have this android replace all NEXT as Heroes as he views them as the perfect embodiment of justice. He wants the duo to fight it to their heart’s content and the data from the battle will be used for future references. Unless they can defeat H-01, they can’t protect anything. You think using Kaede as a threat is going to make that father shrivel in fear. Exact opposite effect, man. Meanwhile all the other Heroes wake up in a separate room filled with spikes and a weird collar around their neck. Through a TV, Rotwang announces the end of their era and H-01 as the new Hero. The Heroes realize he is a NEXT hater. They assert it can never replace them as Heroes because androids are just weapons that only move on command. Plus, they listen to the cries of the people, being Heroes makes them human and they wouldn’t have become one if it’s not for the bond and trust for each other. Rotwang is going to put their trust to the test. Informing them the collar is a bomb, he will only save 1 of them and that is the one who is fastest to flip the deactivation switch on it. By doing so, that 1 person is saved but the bomb will explode for the rest. They have until Tiger and Barnaby’s defeat to flip it, failure in which will result in all of them blowing up. And if they do anything funny with their powers to get it off, Rotwang will manually blow it himself. So their battle starts as soon as Tiger and Barnaby start with theirs.

Episode 24
Saito is trying to find a way to reboot the android seeing it was developed based on Barnaby’s parents’ design. Of course Ben couldn’t understand a single thing he said. So do I. H-01’s powers are too much for the dynamic duo to handle. With that laser gun and sword, you don’t want to mess with it. In addition, their powers ran out so they need to stall for time till it replenishes. How? Run around! Just hope they don’t get hit. Easier said than done. Elsewhere the committee are worried that they can’t contact the Heroes. Yuri remembers when he let Kotetsu run free, the faces off with the imposter Tiger and vows to reveal its identity and the real mastermind. Unfortunately the imposter was quick enough to evade Lunatic’s flames and fire a shoot and injure his shoulder. Maverick comes in to assure everyone the Heroes are fighting a terrorist together. Just like that Jake incident, eh? But his real intention is of course to have them all die and give an excuse that they died honourably in the line of duty. Yuri feels something amiss. The other Heroes are starting to feel the strain and doubt. Rotwang broadcasts Sky High’s words to the rest. He was pondering if it would be better if one should survive rather than all to perish. This has the Heroes doubting each other and at any moment they could give in to the temptation to press the button. Yeah, Rock Bison nearly did it but was tough enough to refrain himself. Unknown to them all, Rotwang plans to have them all killed so anyone who pushes the button will blow everyone up. Finally Tiger and Barnaby got their powers back so they go into action. But even with the combined effort and their Good Luck Mode, H-01 still stands. It’s like it’s not even scratched. While the Heroes watch with baited breath, Blue Rose finally makes her decision. No, not to push the button. She is going to believe in Tiger and Barnaby. They will never lose and will trust them till the end. Her words regain confidence in the rest so they too start putting their faith in the duo. Kaede isn’t going to sit around till Prince Charming shows up. Since the last person to touch her was Blue Rose, she materializes an ice pick to cut herself free. Tiger manages to grab a hold on H-01. Now the only choice left is for Barnaby to use that laser and fire through it. What about Tiger? Just shoot! No time to be thinking about anything else so Barnaby pulls the trigger. I wonder how many walls the laser break through. The good news: H-01 is destroyed. Bad news: Where the hell is Tiger? Rotwang is totally upset that H-01 lost so he plans to manually blow up the Heroes. Fortunately Kaede shoots her ice pick and destroys the controller. Then she freezes Rotwang and destroys his command centre to free the collar off the Heroes’ neck. Everyone breaks out and rushes to meet their saviour. Barnaby finds Tiger badly wounded. His suit is vaporized. I don’t know if he had time to jump away but his powers ran out then. Barnaby learns of his declining power and realizes the events that happened. The old guy doesn’t want the young kid to worry about him. Then Tiger starts talking like as though he is saying goodbye. Thanks for everything. NOOO!!! DON’T GO!!! When the Heroes and Kaede arrive, they are shocked to see ‘the calm on sleeping Tiger’s face’ and in emotional Barnaby’s arms.

Episode 25
Too bad they won’t have time to mourn because the big bad wolf shows up. He still has his trump card. No, he’s not going to alter their memories again. Looks like he has massed produced H-01 androids and they’re attacking the Heroes on his command. If they can’t handle 1 previously, what makes them think they can handle a bunch of them now? Death of a comrade? Doesn’t look any different. Barnaby won’t forgive Maverick but he tells him to blame his parents instead for creating the androids. Of course he knows this is not what their intentions to create these androids are for. The Heroes were seconds being blasted to smithereens for good when suddenly all the androids stop functioning. Seems Saito has managed to reboot the system. Maverick is going to restart the system but Rock Bison destroys the bridge. Rotwang is holding dear to his life on Maverick’s leg. The old geezer has no further use for the scientist since the development of H-01 is complete. He reveals he is a NEXT before kicking him down and let him fall to his death. One bad deed deserves another. The Heroes confront Maverick at the system and he is confident that he will get away scot free. He has friends in high places and nobody will dare question him. Don’t forget his NEXT’s power. As for Tiger’s death, Barnaby killed him, right? Man, this guy is smooth. He is fit to be a politician. But bragging like that has its downfall because Agnes has recorded everything he said from her helicopter. Surprise! She too regained her memories after seeing that bright light but decided to play along. With the broadcast now resumed all over the city, this is the highest rating she’s ever got. Yeah, everyone is watching. Still, Maverick doesn’t know how to give up. Now he takes Kaede as hostage and plans to escape in Agnes’ helicopter. Suddenly a zombie creeps up from behind him! Oops, sorry. Tiger actually as he knocks that heartless bastard out. That’s for trying to mess with his kid. So did he come back from the depths of hell? Actually he didn’t die. He just passed out. Hey, nobody checked his pulse, right? The emotional reunion is cut short once more when Maverick (yes, this damn guy again) isn’t going to be turn himself in. He believes he has not committed any sin. What he has done is to make the public accept Heroes in which they saved the people from despair. But still, he is finished, right? He mentions Ouroboros will never be finished. Knowing this is the end for him, he uses his own powers to alter his memories and turn himself into a vegetable. As Maverick is taken away, Kotetsu apologizes to Kaede for getting her involved. He finally gets his dream when she says how cool he was. Saito meets Barnaby to show him an equation which was the password that stopped the robots. Barnaby doesn’t understand what it means though it was the password his parents used. When everyone learns of Kotetsu’s declining powers, Kotetsu takes this chance to inform he is retiring from the Hero business. Barnaby also express his wish to resign since there is no point going on without him being his partner and being a Hero was just a setup by Maverick. The security escorting Maverick is ambushed by Lunatic who then kills Maverick.

A year has passed and we see some of the Heroes incorporating changes to their life. Pao Lin becomes more feminine, Ivan thinks of incorporating sumo to his routine, Nathan trying to hit on Antonio, Blue Rose already debuted her single as Karina is reading a book on how to hit on single fathers! But still, the usual 6 Heroes continue their routine of stopping crime on Hero TV. Yeah, the Second League Heroes are still running around catching minor criminals. But wait! Isn’t that Tiger running with them?! He’s back in the Hero business after retiring? Because these amateur Heroes don’t get much screen time like the regular ones, I guess Kaede won’t get to see much of papa on TV, eh? Barnaby pays a visit to his parents’ grave. Then he realizes the meaning of the equation. It consists of his parents’ birthdays and his birthday and weight on the day he was born. This has him to remember how they told him they will protect him forever. As for Tiger, he has renamed himself as Wild Tiger 1minute and is not afraid to let others know of his limited power. Lloyds works under Ben who has become the CEO of Apollon Media. As Tiger is trying to apprehend a lowly criminal, he crashes through the roof but Barnaby catches him. Barnaby thought he retired. We learn Tiger came back because Kaede thought he was uncool for being a couch potato at home. Tiger says he realized you don’t set your own limits. Even if he loses all his powers, get mocked, ridiculed, he’s not going to let that stop him or give up. He’s going to be a Hero till the end. And if Tiger is back, this means Barnaby is coming out of retirement too? Yeah, it’s because he is his partner. So the first thing they did? Argue who should pay the fine for the damages! That’s the team we know! I guess Tiger’s popularity has increased so that Sky High fan kid who thought Kotetsu was a Wild Tiger fan and gave his card to him, yeah he buys a trading card of Tiger and Barnaby now. But as the wind blows his dollar away, we are left with another baffling teaser. The picture on the dollar upon getting soaked in the puddle transforms into an Ouroboros mark! Are they saying that crime organization runs the city or it’s just a safety and security mark on the bill?

Who says being a Hero is easy?
Wow. I didn’t expect to find myself to enjoy this series. Firstly the action was engaging enough for me to glue my eyes to the screen like all those audience watching Hero TV. Maybe it’s because that the Heroes do not pull off their powers needlessly and thus avoiding the pitfall of repetitive moves. Yes, the Heroes do not own an arsenal of unlimited moves and so you can guess they are most likely to pull off that same move whenever they fight against baddies. The other interesting bit is the interaction between the Heroes, especially Kotetsu/Tiger and Barnaby. At first the duo didn’t really like each other, getting in each other’s way. Surprisingly they are able to maintain their cool most of the time and not break into any serious physical fistfight though the sarcasm still flies. I mean if they both are going to be partners for a long time, might as well try and get used to it.

Like the opposite ends of the polar, both Kotetsu and Barnaby see the essence in working together for the greater good. It’s just their method of doing so differs. It is admirable that there are still people like good ol’ Kotetsu sticking hard to his ideal way of justice. It may not be economical (since it involves destroying buildings and monuments – things that will COST you money!) but you can’t replace a human’s life as compared to all those structures and construction. I don’t know, I wouldn’t say his way of thinking is old just because he is a veteran in the Hero business for donkey years. Maybe it’s just that with lots of new and younger Heroes, his way of thinking may not be ‘trendy’. But heed his words because what he says are usually words that make you think so and so. Barnaby may be a young cock and certainly is lucky to have Kotetsu around to guide him and the err of his ways. But can you blame him for wanting revenge after watching his beloved parents murdered in front of his eyes? It’s a good thing he still manages to keep his calm composure in front of everyone (and the camera) only when he doubted Jake was the murderer, that he is close to breaking down. Otherwise his ways of getting things done via his theories are commendable. That’s why Tiger and Barnaby both complement each other. They are after all not only partners but friends for life.

It is also nice to see that the other Heroes are given a little focus of their own albeit not much and Tiger and Barnaby are still pretty much involved in a way. For instance, Karina’s singing dilemma, Ivan’s old school buddy and the babysitting incident with Pao Lin. Even behind the masks, the Heroes are still human and face their own set of problems just like any other ordinary humans. Each of the Heroes has their own unique personality and it makes the ragtag team of Heroes a colourful bunch. From transgender Nathan to tsundere Karina and the tomboyish Pao Lin, it’s never a dull moment. Notice how when Keith talks, his hands start moving too? Your typical ‘American Hero’, good looking and upholding justice, but Keith can be a little ‘dumb’ or rather comical at times. For example, he should have guessed Kotetsu wasn’t a villain when the latter mentioned about his secret way of sucking eggs on fried rice. I don’t think that’s the problem, right? Besides, everyone is on such good terms that it’s like going out to catch the baddies in their respective agencies is like as though they’re just putting up a show. Where is the intense rivalry? Friendly rivalry, yes. But not to the extent that there will be jealousy and sabotage. These guys are truly the Heroes they are.

You thought Kaede finally be on good terms with her father, eh? Well, it was just such a short spell. Even if Kotetsu can handle and chase after bad guys, he still can’t handle his own daughter. Being a father is a much tougher job than being a hero. So Kotetsu got his dream come true that his daughter finally acknowledges the cool Hero he is but I guess he has to stay being a Hero if he wants to keep that reputation up. Maybe she can be the next generation of Heroes seeing that she did play pivotal roles in the final arc, saving the city and even the Heroes from a certain death. Ben is a true friend for Kotetsu and he stick with him at all times. So I guess it’s only timely that he deserves to get back his original job as a Hero CEO but in a bigger company. Agnes isn’t a bad woman, just that she puts TV ratings as her top priority.

Many of the villains here live up to their tag as baddies. They are really despicable. I guess if you have one who isn’t rotten, it’s either that person is an amateur or isn’t one at all. Jake and Maverick were equally dastardly. The former was more direct in his crimes against humanity whereas the latter prefers to cover his tracks. Truthfully, I had a feeling that Maverick was going to turn out to be the culprit or villain simply because… He has got the looks of one. Call it stereotypic but I mean, a big corporation boss with some sort of keloid or big protruding mole on his forehead (can’t avert… eyes… away from it…), that doesn’t make him exactly Buddha, right? Lunatic may be playing the antagonist but I don’t see him entirely as a villain. Sure, killing bad guys may seem like you are no different than the baddie themselves but if the person most important to you got killed, I’m sure you want the perpetrator dead at all cost, right? Besides, just like Barnaby, Yuri comes from a broken family, what more a father who is supposed to be the most famous Hero of all time. So can you say he is totally wrong or right in his actions? This is of course debatable and everyone is entitled to their own opinions of him. If not for Tiger and Barnaby thwarting each attempt, the crime rate may have gone down, Stern Bild a safer city but then again, Hero TV may not have enjoyed high ratings with no criminals to catch. But I learnt in Madoka that even without ordinary or super power criminals, evil will still exist in another form :). Because Maverick became the main villain towards the end of the series, Lunatic’s role was somewhat redundant because I thought there would be some epic clash with the Heroes as well. He is only reduced to an observing role (due to his shoulder injury) and the only ‘important’ thing he did at the end was to eliminate the former Apollon Media boss. And the end of the TV series left us with that Ouroboros teaser. So what is this organization exactly? If they ever make another season, my bet is that perhaps this group will take centre stage as the antagonist and hopefully Lunatic too.

The theme of this series I feel is about trust and believe. This is important in any team or partnership. Otherwise the city would have fallen into chaos and mayhem if everybody were selfish and looking out for their own interest. And even if there are those powerless and aren’t able to do anything, at least the most they can do is to put their faith in the Heroes and cheer for them to go on. Perhaps Tiger’s phrase of “I believe that you will believe in me” would catch on like Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann’s Kamina’s “Don’t believe in yourself. Believe in me who believes in you” expression. So do you believe me that this is one cool series? Believe it, dattebayo!

The production of this series is very Americanised. So much so you may think that this is an American production. Heck, every word in the show is in English. You may be forgiven if you are seeing shades of New York landmarks like Central Park or Empire State Building. Even the Stern Bild dollar resembles closely to the American note! But this isn’t so bad as Panty And Stocking With Garterbelt (PSG) because in PSG, every damn thing is so Americanized that the only ‘Japanese’ thingy left is the dialogue. Even so, PSG is riddled with profanity and immoral jokes unlike this one. At least the music and songs are still sung in Japanese and though we have some characters looking very much like Americans, people like Kotetsu and Pao Lin still do have that Asian look, if not at least looking like an anime character. On a trivial note, the next episode preview is either narrated by Kotetsu/Tiger or Barnaby. The amusing part is when they read the next episode’s title. Though Barnaby can pronounce the words smoothly but heavily accented, Kotetsu has a hard time pronouncing, fumbling at each word because it sounds so foreign to him!

As seen on the outfits of the Heroes, there are several real sponsors. I’m not sure if they really do sponsor this series but I guess just like show business, these sponsors realize the importance of product placement. It isn’t the case whereby in order to avoid lawsuits, they purposely misspell popular brand names (like a certain computer operating system or an internet search engine. If you have watched many animes and have a keen eye, you’ll know what I mean). So in this series, we see big names like Bandai, Pepsi, Ustream and Calbee among the many real life brands. Speaking of Pepsi, since Blue Rose’s agency is their main sponsor, every episode in the mid-intermission, we see a short advertisement of her promoting the Pepsi NEX soft drink. I have a confession to make. I am not a Pepsi fan. Get what I mean? And with all the merchandise for each Hero, this is more than just a reality TV. I guess it isn’t a bad idea that Heroes = Idols.

Because Hiroaki Hirata is the voice behind Kotetsu/Tiger, each time I can’t help think that he may burst into his other famous role as that ladies men cook in One Piece, Sanji. Or maybe he would even unleash a Black Leg Style attack! After hearing Bleach’s Ichigo Kurosaki’s voice, it never crossed my mind that Masakazu Morita would be the voice of Barnaby in this series. I mean to me, Ichigo was always shouting and screaming in his fights, full of angst. And if he isn’t, he is like some sort of a guy with few words. So when he voices the calm and cool Barnaby, it really was a surprise. Other casts include Go Inoue as Keith/Sky High (Miura in OreImo), Minako Kotobuki as Karina/Blue Rose (Tsumugi in K-ON!), Kenjiro Tsuda as Nathan/Fire Emblem (Inui in Prince Of Tennis), Mariya Ise as Pao Lin/Dragon Kid (Stocking in PSG), Nobuhiko Okamoto as Ivan/Origami Cyclone (Accelerator in To Aru Majutsu No Index), Taiten Kusunoki as Antonio/Rock Bison (Uruoge in One Piece), Koji Yusa as Yuri/Lunatic (Lau in Kuroshitsuji, Gin in Bleach), Nobuaki Fukuda as Maverick (Chouza Akimichi in Naruto), Keiji Fujiwara as Jake (Sven in Black Cat), Michiko Neya as Kriem (Melissa in Full Metal Panic), Yuko Kaida as Agnes (Ryoumou in Ikkitousen), Rina Hidaka as Kaede (Last Order in To Aru Majutsu No Index) and Katsuhisa Houki as Ben (Jimbei in One Piece).

So there you have it, Heroes continuing to protect the city and unsung ones that go unnoticed every day. They may not be perfect like in fairytales but at least they have what is most important. Just like how Manhattan is to Spiderman and Gotham City is to Batman, it’s safe to say that the dynamic duo of Tiger and Barnaby will ensure baddies to think twice if they ever want to mess around in Stern Bild. I might want to try handing in my application to be a super hero but I guess the only thing I am good at is watching animes and stare at the screen all day long.

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