Rocky Horror Picture WHAT?
A very flamboyant Tatsumi Kanji appears on the Midnight Channel as Yu and Yosuke watch with no small discomfort. Yu, Yosuke, Chie and Yukiko return to the Shadow realm, and though they try to enlist Kuma’s aid to find Kanji’s location, he is at a loss. The foursome decide to withdraw for the time being to return with something that has Kanji’s scent for Kuma to track. Unfortunately, they find he hasn’t been home lately but in the process also learn that he also had his reasons for taking on the biker gang. To their greater surprise, they discover he actually has a caring, compassionate side that belies both his intimidating appearance and reputation.
Borrowing one of Kanji’s handmade crafts, they prepare to reenter the Shadow realm when they encounter Naoto in the lobby of Junes. Naoto suggests Kanji is probably hiding a complex he wants to keep secret from others. When the group returns to the Shadow realm, they bring the trinket to Kuma, who with renewed confidence in his tracking leads them to the dungeon where Kanji is located: a bathhouse, “Men’s Only,” of course.
Yu and Yosuke balk, with Yosuke in particular protesting on grounds of “losing something important.” Spurred on by Chie, the group enters and immediately finds Kanji’s Shadow, whose obscenely florid posturing provokes both Yu and Yosuke to summon their Persona on reflex. Chie restrains them at first, until the Shadow’s antics prove too annoying for her as well and eventually even Yukiko, when Chie draws a comparison between the two.
When they pursue the Shadow to the inner “Tropical Paradise,” predictably, no one wants to open the doors to a potentially mind-scarring Pandora’s Box that almost certainly lies beyond the doors so Chie volunteers the guys into taking the initiative, shoving them through.
They are met by the sight of Kanji, demanding answers, pinning his Shadow to the ground in a somewhat compromising posture, filling them all with profound regret for having walked in on the sight. Kanji, realizing their presence, becomes flustered as his Shadow begins a new round of taunting and eventually tricks Kanji into denying his inner self. The Shadow begins transforming into its true form -a colossal, hulking monstrosity, accompanied by two… well, whatever you call these two:
The three-fold Shadow threat demonstrates amazing resilience to any direct onslaught and easily repels the combined efforts of all four Persona with powerful electric attacks. Meanwhile, Yu and Yosuke are subjected to an altogether different “attack” administered by the two bald titans. Later, Yu encourages Kanji when he calls kanji’s handmade crafts “cute,” giving Kanji the resolve to take down the Shadow, and earn his Persona. Later, Kanji joins the team, lending his aid in the investigation.
… … …Yaranaika? I know I’m repeating a joke I used last week but Kanji is so exploitable.
With Not-So-Tiny Tim on their side, the Gang of Four become a Gang of Five. Anyway, Kanji’s Persona looks totally badass. There are huge advantages to having a juggernaut who can be summoned at-will at your disposal though still, Yu gets all the really cool toys for himself. That Wild Card is pretty sweet. One thing that seemed strange was Naoto still has yet to be officially introduced by name, but he strikes me as the kind of character who likes being mysterious.
Note: Since more than half the episode takes place in Kanji’s Shadow’s bathhouse dungeon, most everything is cloaked in a thick fog of humidity. It made getting reasonably clear snapshots a real pain but what can you do.