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EPISODE 10:
DEFEAT BUG, THE USER OF DARKNESS!

ORIGINAL AIRDATE:
04/09/1986
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SYNOPSIS

Rom, Leina and Jim arrive in Yearn City to look for a friend of Jim's named Vilion but are ambushed by the locals. Rom battles Vilion while Jim and Leina find Jet and Drill. Jet helps subdue Vilion, who explains the town is under constant attack from a gang led by someone with the same fighting style as Rom. While they're talking the gang strikes the town again. The travellers confront them and Jim recognises the leader of the gang as Bug Newman, a former student of Kirai. However, he is using the lethal and forbidden Poison Fist technique and defeats Rom, infecting him.

They try to treat Rom in Yearn City while Bug is contacted by Diondra and told of Rom's survival. Rom wakes in the night, sneaks out while everyone is asleep and receives a vision from Kirai imparting advice on how to beat Bug. Meanwhile Bug raids the town's quarry. Jet and Vilion confront him and Bug demands a showdown with Rom. His gang has been joined by Gyandlar Metal Sand robots who take Vilion hostage. Having meditated and realised how to beat Bug, Rom arrives - summoning Kenryû and freeing Vilion. Bug combines with one of the Metal Sand robots and buries Kenryû, but Rom summons Baikanfu to destroy the machine. A defeated Bug is captured.


NOTES

Vilion is a Drill Heli. His right-hand man is a Missile Robo. Yearn City is Jim's home town. Bug's gang includes a Buggy Robo (who drives Bug around), a Battle Robo, two Supercar Robo (one is killed by Bug, largely to make a point), a Highway Robo, a brown Buggy Robo, a green Ambulance Robo, a yellow Ambulance Robo, a Countach Robo and others of a generic design (including a white robot with a pink heart on it).

Bug recognises Rom, Drill and Jet; during his training he was considered the equal of Kirai. The Poison Hand technique melts opponents at a touch. Rom is strong enough to resist an instant death, however, and seems to be able to overcome the poison altogether. Bug can also throw capsules of the poison with tremendous accuracy.


TRIVIA

Cronos Tribe Featured: Leina Stol, Rom Stol, Kirai Stol (flashback), Bug Newman .

Battle Tribe Featured:
Triple Jim, Rod Drill, Vilion, Missile Robo, Buggy Robo, Battle Robo, Supercar Robo, Highway Robo (cameo), Ambulance Robo, Countach Robo.

Jet Tribe Featured: Blue Jet.

Gyandlar Featured: Gadess, Grujios, Diondra.

Anime Clichés: Rom kicks a missile out of the sky. Bug's multiple waving hands when trying the Poison Fist on Rom are hilarious. Leina sparkles in the moonlight.

Errors: The population of Yearn City attack Rom before witnessing him using his fighting style. Bug kills the Supercar Robo in his gang for no apparent reason when he could have at least tried to kill Rom, Jet and Drill - it obviously happens to demonstrate the poison fist without harming a regular, though why they didn't use one of the townspeople I don't know. The others just stand and watch as Bug kicks the shit out of Rom.


REVIEW

Decent once again - the show wears its' Western genre influences on its' sleeve in the first half and Bug's a passable villain. The second half is a bit more uneven, with long stock-footage sequences of Kenryû and Baikanfu and a mystical interface with Kirai that skirts around what exactly Rom learns. There's also an anticlimactic ending - what happens to Bug?

It's also a bit of a shame there's the need to tie Bug into the Gyandlar with a visit from Diondra that doesn't really go anywhere - he was more fun as a plain bandit.