There are two episodes of Kamen Rider OOO left to air this month, before the series is over. The series should reach 48 episodes, from 2010 to 2011.
I have to be honest - I wasn't entirely sure what to make of the series at first. The drifter/hero of the series, Hino Eiji, seemed likable enough - but his innate desire to help people at first appeared too naive; but over the course of this year his character has been revealed to be an incredible character study in desire -- or the lack of desire, as is the case with Eiji.
Eiji's selflessness, in using the powers of OOO to protect people, has verged on self-destructive, and this month a shocking twist was revealed-- that Eiji is turning into the very enemy he fights, a "Greeed" - a creature of pure desire, and nothing but. Being a container for the Purple Core Medals has slowly been taking over.
Add to that the increasingly dangerous relationship Eiji has had with Ankh, the Greeed who has for the course of the series been acting as an ally, has now become his most bitter enemy. Ankh had fought and won back control of his missing body; he was previously only able to revive as a disembodied hand, relying on possessing the body Detective Shingo Izumi.
For a moment it seemed like the Detective was free, but when Eiji was forced to destroy some of Ankh's Core Medals, Ankh has repossessed the Detective's body and has joined the other Greeed again.
Dr. Maki, the eccentric scientist who betrayed the Kougami Foundation to pursue his quest to bring about the end of the world - has, like Eiji, become a container for the other half of the Purple Core Medals, and has fully embraced becoming a Greeed.
Date Akira has also had an interesting journey during the series. At first he took on the mantel of the technological Kamen Rider "Birth", doing so apparently only for money; it later turned out he needed that money for a very risky and potentially fatal medical procedure to save his life. His ailing health finally caught up with him, and it seemed like Date was going to die. He survived, though, and got the money he needed for the procedure.
Date's protege, Shintaro Goto, began the series as an over eager officer in the Kougami Foundation. When Date left, Goto took over the role as Kamen Rider Birth. Goto has done well in this new role, but it looks like Date is coming back, alive and well, for the finale of the series.
This is really one of my favorite moments in watching Tokusatsu (Japanese Special Effect) series. When you can look back at the entire year's worth of a series, and see the long journey we as viewers have enjoyed - and seeing how it all ties together as a whole package. The theme of greed and desire was ripe for building character stories around - and I feel very lucky to have been able to watch the series this past year.
I want to point out as well how incredible the music of the series has been as well. This week I received my copy of "Kamen Rider Full Combo Collection" - which features the themes to all 7 of OOO's powers. In a great bit of inspiration, all 7 songs where also combined for an incredible mixed track of all the tunes together, switching themes in and out, like OOO's powers. Usually the songs of Kamen Rider only release as singles (which is deeply annoying for someone buying music from overseas) So I'm very pleased to have gotten the chance to get such a decent amount of music for only $25.
Anyway, I also wanted to share more of the images I've collected from the series. You can also find images from my previous posts on the series as it was airing, Kamen Rider OOO, Kamen Rider OOO Images and Info
Putotyra is the final form OOO takes on in the series. It's dinosaur themed, because the Purple Core Medals represent desires that no longer exist. These core medals are the antithesis of all the other powers in the series, as they erase desires, rather than consume them. Eiji at first lost all control over himself, attacking friend and foe alike. He was able to reassert his control over the abilities and harness them. It combines Ptera (Pterodactyl), Tricera (Triceratops), and Tyranno (Tyrannosaurus)
This image is labeled as coming www.modxtoy.com
Tajador, the bird themed powers. These powers come from using Ankh's Core Medals. It combines Taka (Hawk), Kujaku (Peacock), and Condor.
Latorartar, the cat themed powers. They combine Lion, Tora (Tiger), and Cheetah
Sagouzo, the large animal themed powers. They combine Sai (Rhino), Gorilla, and Zou (Elephant)
Ankh, at the beginning only able to revive as a disembodied hand, discovered that his main body survived and developed a personality in his consciousness' absence. Once the child-like new personality matured, it tried to absorb Ankh and become complete; erasing Ankh's personality. Eiji fought to prevent that, and succeeded - but it resulted in 3 of Ankh's 9 Core Medals being shattered, driving Ankh to turn against Eiji.
Goto, an ernest and eager young man who is taken under Date Akira's wing, who eventually succeeded him as "Birth".
Detective Shingo Izumi for a time was free from Ankh and back with his sister Hina.
Dr. Maki, always seen with his eccentric trait of having a doll alongside him. His transformation into the Purple Greeed has given him the path for his ultimate goal - bringing about the end of the world.
Gamel, the ultra powerful, but childlike Greeed
Kazari is the first Greeed to obtain all of his Core Medals and fully revive.
Kousei Kougami, the eccentric President of the Kougami Foundation has been the one connecting the dots for Eiji about the origins of OOO and the Greeed.
Kougami's researched discovered that the Greeed and Core Medals where created with Alchemy by an antient King, who as OOO went power mad, trying to absorb all the powers for himself.
It was during the middle of the season that Kamen Rider, as a franchise, had reached it's 1000th episode. A wacky special ensued.