These three episodes show how strong character development and interesting storytelling makes for a fantastic cartoon. Can’t wait to see what will happen next!
I know you are wondering why wait so long to do a Samurai Jack Review. Well As I watched these three episodes I saw a theme. A question was posed.
Can Jack save an enemy sworn to kill him?
A question that not only brought us full circle in episode 6 but brings us closer to the end of this epic journey of Samurai Jack. That’s right folks. Just four more episodes before we come to a conclusion.
In the belly of the beast Jack once again and his duty of honor gets the best of him. After dispatching Aku assassin daughters save only one Ashi, he fights his way out of this huge beast. What is funny his evil version of himself spoke what I was exactly shouting at my screen to Jack. Just leave the girl! She wants you dead. Yet he saves her at every turn. While she scorns him and even tries to kill him. Jack stays the course of truth and justice. At the end we see both of them out with Ashi thinking hard about her view of Jack.
This episode right here was just pure nostalgia joy. It begins with the return of the Scotsman, along with his MANY daughters (I choose not to ask…) and an entire army at his side to try and kill Aku. You knew he was going to fail, but I think all of us were curious on how it would end. Did he fail. Everyone died. Except his daughters. Aku literally vaporized him. Only to come back by Celtic Magic. Imagine that.
But truly though, this episode was about Ashi learning the real truth about her “father”. And who better to be her guide than Jack? This episode went far in showing not only how brainwashed Ashi was, but also that Jack was just as harmed by the truth as she was. You believed her when she begged Jack to tell her what to do to fix this, and yet, you believed Jack wholeheartedly when he said there was nothing to do, that hope was lost, and that Aku couldn’t be stopped.
So with all that hopelessness we have a small victory for Jack and Ashi in this episode. Where they found a village where the children were taken. When Jack and Ashi found the children only to discover they have been brainwashed to be killers. It was a tough battle for Jack not to harm the children while being savagely attacked by them. While Ashi is being tortured by a “Sith Lord”. After she defeated him Jack watches all of the children on the ground lifeless. Thinking them for dead Jack finally gives in to the green samurai. His guilt of dead children is to much. Even though they are not dead which if he just waited for a few seconds would realize they were alive. Ashi now see that Jack isn’t such a bad guy is left wondering where he could have gone.
We are now full circle. The last two episodes brought us to this point. Jack is now MIA because of guilt. The sassy, smooth-talking assassin, Scaramouche, from the first episode is still alive. Knowing that Jack has lost his sword, he’s searching for Aku to tell him about it.
Ashi is now on the same journey to find Jack but this time not to kill him but to save him. This episode has no action in it but makes up for it with great character development. Ashi now realize how Samurai Jack has touched so many lives. We already know that she has come to the realization that she has been brought up by lies all of her life.
You can see a completely different Ashi once she learns that Jack is actually a good person. It’s sort of a weight off of her shoulders since she doesn’t have to carry the burden and task of killing him. It’s also a testament for her knowing that there are good people out there. Growing up, all she knew was hate and anger. Now, after some soul-searching, she knows who Jack is, and most importantly, who she is.
She even changes her entire appearance, signaling that she’s completely left her other life behind.
When we finally meet up with Jack we see him ready to take his own life. Ashi reminds him of all the lives he have saved. All the while the Green Samurai tries to silence her. When she told Jack that the children are alive he slowly snaps out of it. Just as the Green Samurai had enough of Ahsi interfering Jack saves her and cuts away at the dead guilt ridden Samurais. Finally Jack comes to terms with his decision he seems more focused. At the beginning of episode 4 the question was asked. Can we save her? Not only did he save her. She in turn saved him. The final four episodes will prove to be epic.