Welcome to Week 3 of Baki recaps! With all the chicanery that went into Friday’s episode, I’m pretty sure you can’t wait to dive back in with me today.
Dorian is still a hunted man by everybody who’s ever heard of Shinshinkai for his savage beating of Koto, but after being – for all intents and purposes – kidnapped and brought to an amusement park to face the wrath of the Shinshinkai, he (I think) kills strongman Atsushi Suedo by throwing him out of a moving roller coaster. I say “I think” because I’ve thought a lot of people have been killed thus far and, honestly, I don’t think a single one has wound up dead. Maybe Spec, but he’s also 97 years old and had a good run.
We were left with Dorian coming face to face with Katsumi Orochi and Kaioh Retsu where Retsu connects some pieces of his past and realizes that Dorian is a legendary Kaioh from his old dojo. He immediately drops the need for vengeance and shows respect to Dorian by telling him that it’s a pleasure to finally meet him.
This has basically become Kaioh Dorian’s show – especially since HE DRYHEAVED OUT A GRENADE AND PULLED THE PIN BEFORE ANYONE COULD EVEN REALIZE WHAT WAS HAPPENING – and this new development cements that he’ll play a major role in today’s episode as well.
Still waiting on anything having to do with the guy the show is named after…
Season 1, Part 1, Episode 11: Tiger Slayer
Dorian and Retsu. Here they are. Face to face. A couple of silver spoons.
That may not be an entirely accurate description, but just roll with me here.
Dorian actually compliments Retsu saying it was probably ten years after he had left the training ground that he began to hear of Retsu as a child prodigy who would go on to be a Kaioh. He offers to go another round with Retsu, but Retsu declines stating that the rules of Kung Fu prohibit fellow students fighting. Obviously, Retsu has never had to come face to face with the villainous Mr. X.
Katsumi is fucking pissed and basically calls Retsu a Mudblood. If Retsu won’t do fight Dorian, he will. But before Katsumi can even pull up his pant legs to get a little more movement, he’s pulled back by the master and his father: Doppo Orochi.
Doppo reminds Katsumi that he’s the master and found of Shinshinkai and that he also has a receipt to give Dorian since the Kaioh clean cut his hand off with the magic science wire. Shit about to get really real for real right now. To prove his seriousness, Doppo gets naked so he can fight unencumbered. I don’t blame him. I don’t do that to fight, but I also enjoy being unencumbered. I’m unencumbered right now. We’re really doing this.
Doppo goes in for the attack and during one of his body blows, the cast on his left arm – the one missing the hand – shatters into pieces. It is then that…wait. Are you…hold up.
So Doppo reared back with his left arm and punched Dorian right in the grill piece, but…his fucking hand has grown back.
HIS MOTHERFUCKING HAND HAS MAGICALLY GROWN BACK!
OK, we need to take a Zack Morris timeout here.
OK, I am willing to accept a great many things. I have looked the other way when guys had their throats slit and still didn’t die. I have accepted that one guy can pretty much fart in his hand and then press that hand over your face to knock you the fuck out. i took it in stride when one guy is out slicing dudes with hoops of razor sharp dental floss, but our boi here, Double Main Man Doppo, just re-grew a motherfucking hand!! And then he flexes it and says, “Ahhhhh, feels good!”
Wait! They’re actually going to show us how he got his hand back?!
Oh! Oh! You’re gonna love this shit. He (Doppo. Pronouns, pal.) was in walking distance of an underground surgeon’s office like you’d expect some crime lord in an episode of Gotham to waltz into and basically says, “give me the usual.” The surgeon to the stars here takes a big swig of bourbon or whatever the fuck he’s drinking and is like, “alright, have at it, hoss, but anesthesia is not in stock so you do you.”
I cannot believe this shit is real.
The doc gives us the play-by-play as he’s getting going. Gotta reconnect the bones, the capillaries, all the good stuff. He actually makes this sound as routine as getting your tonsils out which, let’s call a spade a spade: it is most certainly not. The doc reattaches the hand and bandages up Doppo after about 11 minutes and tells him to relax for three weeks before punchsizing any faces.
Three weeks and we gucci. Once again, I’m pretty sure this is John Cena’s doctor hookin’ it up.
Now that three weeks(!) have passed, Doppo feels indestructible just like how I feel when my eyebrows are on point. I’m going to be honest here: Dorian’s about to get his shit pushed in and we all know it. Doppo attacks Dorian with a magnificent punch to the gut that forces Dorian to dryheave up another weapon: a glass bottle of acid.
I’d ask what he thinks he’d need a bottle of acid for, but I’ve already seen what he did with a fucking hand grenade, so I’m sure that now I have no doubt that he does indeed require the acid and also has at least a few different ways in which he’d apply it to fights based on the situation.
We cut away sharply and…hey! Baki still exists! And he’s drinking a soda! He’s out with Kozue and they’re trying to figure out relationship stuff meanwhile dudes is out here dying because of a tournament where everyone wants a shot at Baki. This time, the man stalking him on his date is his own father: Yujiro Hanma. We’ve touched on him only slightly before and let’s just say that I don’t believe he’s going to prove himself to be Dad of the year at any time.
Back to our fight, Doppo is laying into Dorian, but Dorian is pulling his hypnotizing trick on Doppo who is really just fighting thin air while Dorian looks on with laughter. Katsumi tries calling out and getting his attention, but Doppo is entranced by the moment, tiring himself out while Dorian waits to pick his spot. Doppo, however, finds some way, not to break the hypnosis, but to have the illusion match up with reality. In his mind, Doppo is still unstoppable, but now it’s against the real Dorian.
Dorian begins pulling out all of his tricks, his weapons and moves, but they are all being blocked aside by Doppo. Dorian begins a voiceover, he realizes the power and talent of Doppo Orochi, the Japanese God of War and tiger slayer. Dorian sounds almost…excited. He may finally get his wish. His wish…to taste defeat.
Yo, man. I honestly have no freaking idea what the hell is happening anymore. None.
But this man had a hand reattached and came back to to fight one of the baddest dudes that’s ever existed just three weeks post-op. We toss around terms like, “grit” and “toughness” all the time in sports, but show me another athlete at a world class level who came back to compete at the upper levels of their profession after having their hand reattached in an underground clinic.
I don’t get the tournament or the brackets or even how you win, but you know what? I don’t give a fuck anymore. These fights are insane and that’s all I need. Each episode is leaving me with my mind blown by what is going on and yo: that’s entertainment.
It doesn’t have to make sense. It’s not trying to be realistic. This is a collection of some of the most wicked fight scenes I’ll probably ever see in this kind of animated setting and I get fired up for each episode.
Thank Cena these episodes are only a half hour because I don’t know if my heart can handle any longer. I’m just all about this right now. I want more. I wanna see Dorian taste defeat. Fuck him up, Doppo!
Until next time.