Samurai Flamenco: Episode 22 – “Samurai Flamenco Naked!!”

Samurai Flamenco is an anime that focuses on two characters: Hidenori Goto and Masayoshi Hazama. Hidenori is a police officer who takes his job seriously, while Masayoshi is a male model who has wanted to be a superhero for years and has taken on the identity of Samurai Flamenco. After having the Flamenco Girls joining him on adventures, everything changes with the arrival of King Torture. After Masayoshi and Hidenori are able to defeat King Torture, Masayoshi reveals his true identity to the media that have arrived. Masayoshi also became a member of the Flamengers, and was Flamen Red.

Episode 22 opens with Hidenori having a lengthy flashback about his girlfriend’s disappearance and how his habit of sending himself text messages as his girlfriend evolved. Once this finishes, we hear the gunshot that ended Episode 21. However, we quickly hear Haiji say that he doesn’t want to kill Hidenori; instead, he wants Hidenori to kill him so Masayoshi can be scarred for life. In order to trigger Hidenori’s “crazy switch,” Haiji begins deleting all of the text messages on Hidenori’s phone. When he reaches the final message, which is the last message Hidenori received from his girlfriend, Hidenori begs him not to delete it as Haiji taunts him. Haiji deletes the message, and Hidenori goes berserk.

Meanwhile, Masayoshi learns from Konno that Haiji’s parents faked his death due to his request. After getting this information, Masayoshi finds Hidenori as he keeps yelling that he’ll kill Haiji. Masayoshi confronts Haiji, and Haiji throws the Samurai Flamenco suit at Masayoshi; it turns out Haiji had taken it before causing the explosion at Masayoshi’s apartment. Haiji insists that Masayoshi puts it on, and at first, it appears Masayoshi will do it. However, after stripping down to his underwear, Masayoshi refuses.

From here, Masayoshi starts doing some unexpected things, and the episode reaches its climax. The last few minutes of the episode takes place six months after the end of Masayoshi and Haiji’s confrontation.

Well, this quite an… interesting way to bring Samurai Flamenco to an end, for lack of a better word. There were times during Masayoshi and Haiji’s confrontation where Masayoshi would do something that make me think, “WTF?” However, I guess it wouldn’t be Samurai Flamenco without those kinds of moments.

Samurai Flamenco was definitely quite a trip, and as it progressed, I really had no idea what to expect with each story arc. There was the abrupt tonal shift when the series hit the King Torture arc, but once that arc was done, I had adjusted to the change in the series’ tone. My main disappointment with the series is the fact that the quality of the animation had noticeably decreased rather early in the series’ run.

Both Masayoshi and Hidenori both went through major changes as the series progressed. While Masayoshi may have still been reckless at the end of the series, but he was nowhere near as naïve as he was when we first met him back in Episode 1. And it turned out that Hidenori was hiding a dark secret and wasn’t quite as stable as he appeared early on in the series.

Overall, though, I did enjoy Samurai Flamenco. At such a time that this series is released on home video, it’s one I will definitely be considering to add to my personal anime home video library.

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