The episode sees the mayor of Stern Bild being pressured into doing something about NEXT, and it’s quickly revealed what it is. The mayor issues two orders: that all NEXT are to be evacuated into various zones away from the regular population, and that superhero activities are suspended and the heroes need to turn in their suits and other superhero items. And since our main characters are no longer superheroes, they can’t arrest people or do any of the other superhero things that they used to do. It’s also not surprising to learn from Agnes that Hero TV has been taken off the air, since superhero activities have been suspended.
A lot of the episode is spent focusing on the heroes as they try to make peace with what’s happening to them. The most striking of these scenes, at least to me, was when Kotetsu and Barnaby return their suits and items, and we see Saito looking sadly at his inventions being returned to him. As I watched this scene, I realized we hadn’t seen Saito at all this season up to this point, so it was nice that he made this brief appearance. During the turmoil of their hero activities being suspended, Barnaby finds a silver lining in it all, because it gives his leg a chance to recover.
Meanwhile, Magical Cat gets a call from her mother after she hears the news, and she wants to have a meeting with her daughter to ask her about her future. Why was it not surprising that her mother cared more about her daughter’s future plans than her daughter’s feelings about what’s happening? And Thomas makes a surprising revelation to Subaru near the end of the episode. There’s also a scene where the heroes are gathered together after they’ve turned their suits in, and they see a news report on how crime is on the rise now that there are no more heroes, and that the public is unhappy with law enforcement’s response. Well, I guess that answered at least one of the questions I had after watching Episode 16.
While most of the focus of this episode is on the heroes and their reactions to events, we also get scenes of Gregory and the woman from Ouroboros, as well as a scene with Yuri at home. With Gregory, we learn how his partnership with the woman from Ouroboros came to be, as well as getting to see the interactions these two have. There’s a post-credits scene with Gregory that lets the audience know that the mayor’s plan for separating out the NEXT is going to be a disaster.
As for Yuri, he has another vision of his late father, Mr. Legend, after the heroes are disbanded. It’s not helping that his mother, who has mentally declined, keeps insisting on bringing up Mr. Legend. Yuri is definitely starting to crack mentally, which is being illustrated through these visions he has of his father. The visions seems to be leading Yuri toward bringing back Lunatic, and it’s going to be interesting to see if Lunatic comes back, and if so, how.
Tiger & Bunny 2 has definitely taken a darker turn with this episode, and it’s upping the ante for the story quite a bit. It’s going to be interesting to see how the story progresses over the remaining eight episodes.
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