Monday, October 29, 2018

Kamen Rider BLACK! Episode 8 - The Devils Trill. Summary/Review

It is I, Kaiser Sensei and I am back from my mini-Kaisercade holiday (yup, only lasted the weekend), meaning that I didn't get the latest Kamen Rider Zi-O review up...  Oh, well!  I'll just have to do double Zi-O this Friday.  Don't feel too sad though as I'm not completely Kamen-less today, I still have Kamen Rider Black covered.  (Click on "Read More" to read the full article).


This episode opens up with a girl named Yuri having private violin lessons while her teacher is watching.  Yuri plays very well but her teacher incites that she'll need to sell her soul to the Devil before she can play the perfect note AKA The Devil's Trill.  Yeah, I'm starting to suspect that her teacher might be a member of Golgum. Yuri tries to play the Devil's Trill but fails to do so, leaving Mr. Golgum Music Teacher very upset and reminds her that she'll need to sell her soul in order to play that note.

The Golgum Music Teacher storms off and locks Yuri in the room leaving her feeling scared for her life.  Things get worse, a weird buzzing sound can be heard and then a mysterious door opens up and out comes a monster! If you're familiar with my reviews (or the show for that matter) then this monster is about as ruthless as the rest of them.  The Monster chases Yuri and once it has her, it murders her by stabbing her in the neck... DAMN!  Yeah, that's pretty scary shit even if there is no blood and/or gore shown.

It's the next day and Kotaro is riding around on his bike until he notices a girl playing some beautiful music.  Yup!  The girl none other than Yuri!.. Looks like I was wrong about her getting murdered, now I'm worried that something worse has happened to her.  Kotaro is nearly hit by a paper airplane, he picks it up and gives it to Yuri.  Turns out the paper plane is from a friend of hers whom is resting in the hospital.  Nothing much happens in this scene other than basic plot set up and truth be told, the dubbing in this scene is terrible, there are spots where the audio does not match up to what the characters are saying at all and when Kotaro takes his helmet off, the sound for the visor being pulled up plays before the b****y visor gets pulled up.

Next we get a weird music montage that features kindergarten kids singing a nursery rhyme, a guy on the street dancing around with a boombox on his shoulder, and a marching band.  All of this does fit the theme of the episode but it is still a bit confusing as to why this montage is put in the episode... Until the next scene plays.  Turns out that it's the Golgum who are studying people that are enjoying music and their grand plan for the week is to use the music to brainwash people.

Back to our main characters, where we find out that Yuri was practicing for a contest, where the winner will go on a trip to Europe and learn with the music meisters…  She doesn't win and is very upset with herself and Kotaro turns up and tells her that there's nothing to be sad about as she still plays incredibly well.  Just like every perfectionist, Yuri runs off crying and ignores the praise.  Yuri runs until she is all alone and is then confronted by a mysterious stranger that's trying to tell her that the contest was rigged and asks if she wants revenge... Yeah, I wonder what group would ever dare to take advance of someone feeling down? No point in asking, you already know what the answer is.

Next scene we see people driving in their cars and listening to radios, where the Golgum use their monster to send a special signal that's causes the peoples brains to scramble and they all end up crashing in the streets in a very over the top action film style, full of flips and explosions.  The signal gets stronger and spreads to more people and the people just fall over in pain while the music is messing with their heads.  Kotaro shows up to help people but then starts to feel pain from the music and starts to search for the origin point and finds himself in shock as it is Yuri that is causing the brain scrambling music with her violin. *GASP*  Kotaro chases Yuri into a forest but Yuri starts playing that damn hip hop music... I mean, Yuri plays her violin and starts scrambling Kotaro's brains.  Kotaro tries to talk Yuri out of it but is then attacked by the monster of the week and this week it's a weird Grasshopper-Mosquito-Herecross-Grinch looking thing.

The Grinch Bug starts trying to kill Kotaro with his needle nose but Kotaro manages to get it off of him.  Kotaro is trying to avoid all of Big Bugs lightning attacks, while trying to convince Yuri to stop (who said that men couldn't multitask).  Kotaro transforms into Kamen Rider and this time we don't get any special transformation scene, Kotaro just rolls behind a tree and comes out the other end as Kamen Rider.  Not a bad special effect actually, adds a bit of a breather to the show and hope to see more transformation scenes like this in future episode.  Anyway, Kamen Rider starts fighting the monster but gets himself into a bit of the pickle as when Kamen Rider hurts the monster, it also hurts Yuri as Yuri and the monster are bonded though some mystic force... KINKY.  Yuri and the monster runaway and Kamen Rider is left concerned.

Remember that paper plane throwing kid in the hospital who's name is Hideo? Me neither but we cut to a scene of him lying around in hospital and is feeling lonely because he hasn't seen Yuri in a long time.  Hideo looks out the window and spots Yuri and gets excited, Yuri on the other hand is too ashamed to meet him and runs off.  Hideo gets so excited that he runs out of hospital and chases Yuri.  After that we cut to Kotaro whom has been informed that Hideo has ran away from the hospital and he wastes no time and starts searching for Hideo and Yuri.

Kotaro manages to find Hideo and Hideo tells Kotaro about where Yuri is and that she isn't her usual friendly self.  AGAIN! Another scene where the audio does not match well with what the characters are saying and it is very distracting.  Kotaro then searches a building to find Yuri and while he is searching, Yuri is in a secret room with the Golgum and they are impressed that she can play the Devil's Trill.  The Golgum actually do something that makes sense for once as they intend on recording Yuri playing the Devil's Trill which gives them much more opportunity to cause more chaos...  Although, if you'd asked me, playing the Hamster Dance on the radio 24/7 would be enough to drive anyone to kill themselves.

Kotaro manages to find the room and takes a peek at what is happening but only to hear the evil notes, which makes his head hurt and he falls into the room, blowing his cover.  Kotaro gets up and tries again to convince Yuri that she is being manipulated but things aren't going well until he throws her one of Hideo's paper airplanes which helps to get Yuri thinking clearly.  The Golgum members start laughing, they've got Kotaro right where they want him.  Next we get a very spooky scene involving some fog and a creepy shadow in a window because Big Bad Bug is back for another round of Kamen Rider Wrestling.  Big Bad Bug uses his brain lighting to control Yuri and all of the other hostages to play the evil notes (yup, there's more than just Yuri in the room), so the monster can have advantage over Kotaro.

Next we have a very silly transition where Kotaro, the monster, and all of the violinists are outside in a forest leaving me with more questions than answers.  How did Kotaro escape from the room?  How did Kotaro get to the forest really quickly? Most importantly, how did all of the violinists reach the forest first?  A scene of Kotaro running down a hall would've been a nice thing to have instead of suddenly having him at a forest.  The violinists start playing the brain melting music and the monster starts beating Kotaro up even more.

IT'S HENSHIN TIME! Kotaro manages to get to a safe spot and transforms into Kamen Rider and his first move is stealing all of the violins and smashing them in order to stop the music (talk about rock 'n roll).  Kamen Rider starts to beat up the Big Bad Bug Monster but remembers that if he hurts the Monster, he'll harm Yuri.  Creepy mind games kick in as the controlled Yuri gets up and starts taunting Kamen Rider that she'll die if the Monster is killed, leaving Kamen Rider confused as to what to do.  The Monster knocks Kamen Rider to the ground and starts drilling though his armor with his nose, trying to pierce Kamen Rider's heart.  Kamen Rider figures out the secret to the Monster's mind control, it turns out he has a third eye that's controlling them, so he smashes it.  It works! Kamen Rider beats up and defeats the monster!  Everyone is saved, Yuri is forgiven, and everything is back to normal and that concludes the eighth episode of Kamen Rider Black.


This was a pretty okay episode, nothing all that great happens but nothing all that bad happened either.  The music idea is very stock one but it worked, I did find myself mildly enjoying the story and characters.  This episode does have problems such as bad dubbing over scenes, an awkward transition that left me baffled.  Some of the characters were so forgettable that I had forgotten who they were after the scene they appeared in had ended, making me confused as to who they were when they returned.

There wasn't many remarkable things about the filming of this episodes, it was full a lot of plain shots but what was done well was of all of the shots of the monster.  All of the monster scenes did a very good job at making it feel like what it's supposed to be... A MONSTER.  All of its introduction scenes felt like it was straight from an R rated horror movie and did give me some chills.  I also liked how it acted much worse than it looked, it was a very ruthless creature that would kill you and your family if it had the chance to.

Not much to say about the special effects but the special effects we got were pretty awesome.  I did like the brain lightning, the killer needle/drill nose, the over the top car crashes, and the first act transformation scene where Kotaro rolls behind a tree to become Kamen Rider.  I also liked how it didn't take away anything from the story, it actually enhanced what was going on.  Sadly, all of the fights are special effect driven to where it harms the martial art/hand to hand combat parts of the battle and we get very few action in that style in this episode.  When we do get some martial art stuff, it isn't great, only a few punches and maybe a throw but nothing much was going on.

Overall, this is far from the best that this series has to offer but it certainly is far from being the worst as well.  It is a harmless episode that will keep you entertained but it won't an episode that you'll remember for the rest of your life.  I'm giving this episode a six out of ten.  I'm Kaiser Sensei and I'll see you next time for some more Kamen Rider Black.  HENSHIN!

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