It’s episode 8 of Nijuu Mensou no Musume, and the mysterious lady and her large sidekick go off in search of Chiko, hoping that she can show them to Twenty Faces’ legacy, something which they hope will allow them to finalize research on a weapon which was started during the war.
- The big guy in the robot suit turns out to be a guy who has been subject to human experimentation by the mysterious lady. However, after her funding was cut off, she runs with the man and uses him to steal more money to continue the research. However, he man doesn’t exactly seem happy about this, but he needs the chemicals that the women is using on him to survive. The woman then reveals why she wants to find what Twenty Faces left behind: she believes he had the information she needs to fully conduct her experiments.
- At her house, one of Chiko’s other uncles, Genji arrives to see her after not seeing her for over two years. He seems to want to ask her something, but decides that it wold be better to ask Akine, the P.I. who found Chiko.
- The trio goes to see the CEO of Kiyonami PHarmaceuticals. The CEO asks them to find two of his researchers who went missing 3 months prior with all of their research materials: Kayama Nozomi, who is the mysterious woman, and Tsuya Takashi, who I assume is the now-mutated man. Apparently the pair was researching a type of weapon.
- At school the next day, Chiko finds a piece of paper on her desk with “I’ve come back to get you” written on it, supposedly from Twenty Faces, but it turns out that it was written by one of the girls in class. Shunka wants to see it, so Chiko throws the paper at her, but it has nothing written on it. Shunka demands how Chiko learned something so slight-of-hand, but Chiko doesn’t tell her.
- When Chiko leaves school, a young boy runs up to her and gives her a note and runs off. This time, the note says that “he’ll” be waiting for her in front of her house at 10, and this time Chiko recognizes the mark on the note is definitely Twenty Faces’. However, Chiko immediately doubts the authenticity of the note, since telling her where he would be like that would be too obvious. Chiko tosses the note away, and Shunka picks it up.
- That night, Shunka stands in front of Chiko’s house pretending to be Chiko when Kayama shows up and says that she’s a messenger for Twenty Faces and picks her up. Meanwhile, two girls from school who saw Shunka pick up the note trail her and watch her get picked up. Suddenly Chiko shows up, but the car has already driven off, but the two girls tell Chiko what they saw.
- On the way to wherever Kayama is driving, she gets a good look at Shunka when they pass a street light and Kayama realizes that Shunka isn’t Chiko and stops the car. Kayama chides Shunka, and tells her that she can get her some expensive toy if she’s board, but Shunka just says that she wants some adventure before she turns 16, since she’s set to have an arranged marriage then. Kayama decides to drive on to her destination.
- Chiko runs and fetches Akine, telling him that there’s been a kidnapping and he, Chiko, and the two girls who were witnesses drive off to find Shunka. Meanwhile, Kayama and Shunka near their destination but find it surrounded by cops and Kayama surrenders. Soon after, Akine and the others show up.
- Tsuya, the mutated man, sees Chiko outside and bursts out of a warehouse in his suit of armor, his mind being warped from all the experiments and being on the verge of death, and chases Chiko. Meanwhile, Kayama explains to the CEO that she’s after the research data from the war – data she’s sure Twenty Faces was in possession of – research that they never had a chance of testing on a human due to losing the war.
- Just as Tsuya has Chiko cornered, Kayama, who has obviously been experimenting on herself as well, smushes Tsuya into a wall. Tsuya asks Chiko how he can turn his body back to normal, but Chiko tells him that she doesn’t know. Hearing this, Kayama warns Chiko that many people are after her, then gets away, leaving Tsuya behind.
- Afterwards, Shunka is impressed with Chiko, and remarks that it will never be boring if she hangs around her…
This was quite a different type of episode from the past ones and seemed almost more sci-fi-ish given Mr. Mutated Man, as he kind of reminds me of Mr. Hyde from LXG or something.
The mystery behind what Twenty Faces was after gets even deeper in this episode as well as Kayama and Tsuya are obsessed with “Twenty Faces’ Legacy,” something which either worries Chiko or has peaked her curiosity.
We also now learn a reason for Shunka to run off with Chiko later: an arranged marriage which Shunka is hardly thrilled about. She is also interested in seeking adventure, so it’s clear that she may be a good match as a partner for Chiko, assuming that her search for adventure doesn’t make her reckless (and there is already evidence that it will).
Meanwhile, the two girls that went along with Chiko to search for Shunka seem to be afraid of Chiko now after witnessing what she’s capable of – something which may lead to Chiko’s departure from school sooner rather than later.
I think I predicted last time that I thought that the school story-arc would last 3 or 4 episodes, and I still think that after this episode, if for no other reason than it’s not like Chiko to sit there and allow her enemies to come to her. I think by Episode 10 or so, we’ll be saying bye to the school.
Overall, I have to say I liked the episode with Chiko hanging out with Twenty Faces better than episodes like this, but given that I think this arc will be relatively short, I think what happens after this arc may be the determining factor in how good this series really ends up being.
One final note, I’ve been trying to pin down for a while exactly when this series took place. I couldn’t tell if it was in the 30s, 40s, 50s, or whenever. We know that there was a “great war,” but now we hear that Japan lost that war in this episode. The only international wars which I found that Japan has list was the Second Sino-Japanese War and World War II, both of which ended nearly simultaneously with World War II. That being the case, assuming this great war being described in the series isn’t fictional, the series probably almost certainly takes place either in the late 1940s or early 1950s, though most of the original stories were based after World War I, so until and unless we get a definitely answer from the anime, I still can’t say we know for sure when this takes place.