GARO 01 – Picture Book

Garo

Where there is light, shadows lurk and fear reigns. But by the blade of knights, mankind was given hope.

The episode starts off with an old museum owner hearing a strange, creepy laugh in the storage basement filled with boxes and paintings. While looking for where the noise was coming from, he sees a box with a piece of old ribbon tied up like a present, and opens it. It’s a blue painting of a young, naked women and he thinks it looks beautiful. All of a sudden, the picture of the women comes to life and pops out of the painting, giving out a demonic aura to the viewers. The women, with her arms seductively wrapping around his neck, asks if the old man likes young girls and he, awkwardly, says yes (pedophile! xD). The women says that he’s just like her and then precedes to turn into a demonic looking monster, revealing tentacle-like things from its body and precedes to kill and possess the old man.

We then see a young, man training with his sword in an unknown, dark place.

After we see the title screen, we then get a narration from a women as we see a little girl reading a picture book in the woods. The women says that whenever she brings up her earliest memory, her mind always remembers that picture book and the golden knight in it that would would continuously and heroically defeat the repulsive monsters. But, when she turned to the last page… it was empty. All of a sudden we see a scene that shows a demonic-looking creature emerging form the ground.

The girl, scared and frightened, was surrounded by a bunch of silhouette-covered monsters. Just as a monster lashes out at the little girl, all the monsters are suddenly cut in half and killed. The little girl seemed to have been saved by the same golden knight, wielding his golden sword, in the picture book.

After that, the girl, now a women in about her 20s, wakes up and finds that it was all a dream. She’s sleeping on a couch and gets up. She looks down at the paper on the desk next to the couch and starts to draw.

In the next scene, we see her in an art museum, putting up the same picture on the wall (now fully colored and everything) which seems to be an advertisement. She thanks the owner, the same one we saw at the beginning, for exhibiting her art, which fills her with joy. When she wasn’t looking, the old man looked at her very hungrily. He says that there’s one more thing to do to finish this all up. He then(forcefully) tried to pull her into the basement. Surprised, the women gets a strange feeling and runs out of the museum, apologizing to the owner. Catching her breath, she wonders what just happened back there.

Shortly after, we see the young man again, still skillfully training with his sword around swinging axes.

After that, we see a nice, white house. The women tells the man in the room that she’s been having some strange dreams about a golden knight and monsters in the picture book her dad drew long ago. She wonders why he drew that picture book and says that the last page seems to trouble her because it’s blank. The man asks if she has the picture book right now, but she replies by saying that the original and all the copies no longer exist. The man says that the last page of the book seems to be a key to this mystery. He says that perhaps she desires this picture book to exist, so her mind created it for her. The women, whose name is Kaoru Mitsuki, says that the man, Ryuuzaki-sensei, that he’s probably right. Since this is her first time exhibiting her art in a gallery, she’s not confident that she’ll get good reviews, so she’s being tormented by a monster named “anxiety”.

We skip back to the museum again, hearing another young women saying that Kaoru just draws strange pictures and tells the owner that she’s just in the way. The old man says that he understands and says they should have a talk about it leisurely, over dinner, while rubbing her arm pervertedly. The owner than pulls the young lady away. As she tells him to stop, he exclaims that he’s starved, and actually eats her.

Once again, we see the young man from before practicing his combat skills with his katana. All of a sudden, we hear the voice of his butler call him, “Kouga-Sama?”. He tells him that it’s time to work. As Kouga walks up to his butler, his butler bows and gives him a red envelope. Kouga says it’s been a while say “they” gave him work and he says that the timing’s good, he’s all warmed up. He takes out a lighter emitting green flames and burns the envelope, strange words appear around him.

There are signs of calamity. The yin of the Horrors which feeds upon human pride… shall be cut down immediately.

The words disappear and we see Kouga, now in a white trenchcoat, outside the museum building. A talking skull-shaped ring tells him that it’s close, it can feel a strong presence of evil. Kouga precedes to walk in.

We see Kaoru running in, shouting out good morning. However, the owner doesn’t seem to be there and she runs into Kouga. He pushes her into a nearby pillar, pulls out his lighter, and turns on the flame in front of her face and looks into her eyes. She doesn’t seem to be his target. Hearing the owner call her name, Kaoru, frighteningly runs behind him.

The owner asks if he could help Kouga with something. He says he’s looking for someone, but it looks like he had the wrong person. The owner says that if he doesn’t have any business, he should kindly leave. However, Kouga says he’s thinking of buying one of Kaoru’s paintings. Kaoru is excited, but the art sale display isn’t until the next day. However, the gallery owner allows him to. Kouga sees a painting with a landscape in a kingdom, and says he likes it and wants Kaoru to deliver it to him by tonight.

Kouga asks if there are more beautiful paintings. The owner says there are more in the basement. While there, the owner tells Kouga that he hopes he will find something pleasing among the selection. Kouga sees a box, with an old ribbon hanging down from it, and asks what it is. The old man says there’s nothing inside, it was always just a box. Kouga then asks it he ate it up… or was he the one eaten…? The old man turns around and sees that he’s facing Kouga’s green lighter. In his eyes, Kouga confirms that this man is possessed by a Horror – his true target. However, literally with the speed of light, the old man escapes.

The gallery is covered in a barrier and Kaoru notices that she can’t get out. Kouga’s ring tells him that this is the Horror called Angry. Kouga relaizes that it’s the women-eating horror that he despises. The ring tells him that it appeared using an evil picture as a gate. It also says it uses traps.

All of a sudden, two red phantoms with spears popped out of some paintings and started fighting Kouga. After a show of some pretty slick martial arts skills, Kouga impales both of them with his katana and they disintegrate into blood.

Waiting in the gallery, Kaoru sees the gallery owner. He says that Kouga was just a swindler. Kaoru is surprised, he says he’s already called the police and everything is okay. He then insists on taking her home, forcefully pulling her to the exit. Suddenly, Kouga’s voice is heard. He said the traps were fun. The old man hears him, annoyed, and asks him if he’s a Makai Knight. As he says this, Kaoru notices the pupils in his eyeballs have disappeared and becomes frightened.

The man grabs her and then starts spiting a bunch of acid towards Kouga, all of which he dodges skillfully. He pushes Kaoru away and then starts to attack Kouga. After outsmarting the possessed old man numerous times, the Horror suddenly bursts out of the old man’s body in a very bloody scene. The Horror turns into a shadow and slides up and down the walls until it hides in a painting. Kouga scans the room, examining each painting. When the flame of his green lighter reacted, he blew the green flame into the painting and it started to pulsate. Kaoru is frightened, and Kouga tells her to run, immediately. Remembering that all the doors were locked, she hid behind a nearby pillar.

As the painting began to take the shape of a demonic creature, Kouga unsheathes his katana and raises it into the air. A light is seen above him and as the monster lashes out at him, he transforms into the golden knight Kaoru saw in the picture book and smacks the monster away with his golden sword.

After a short while of fighting with the Horror, the golden knight slashes it in half. As it dies, the Horrors’ blood had splattered on Kaoru. Kouga turns to see this and tells her that she should’ve ran, because when a human is stained by a Horrors’ blood, they must be cut. As Kouga, in his golden knight form, raises his sword and Kaoru faints, the scene blacks out.

We see Kouga, in his human form, carrying her home, saying that the blood soaked on her body would attract more Horrors and if he used her as bait, his hunting will be more easier.

As Kaoru wakes up on her coach, she thinks for a moment that it was all just a dream. However, Kouga is beside her, saying that it was all real. Surprised, Kouga assures her that he won’t kill her. Kaoru angrily asks who he is and why is he in her home without permission, which annoys Kouga because he says that he was the one that saved her and carried her home, and he shouldn’t be the target of suspicion. He says she was quite heavy, and Kaoru takes offense to that. Kouga figures that pep of hers means she’s all better, so he begins to leave. Kaoru tells him to stop, saying that she was going to have an art exhibition tomorrow and now her first chance as an artist is ruined, so how can he just coldly leave? He apologizes for deceiving her, but one thing is true – he liked her painting and it reminded him of the landscape in the town he grew up in. As he promised, he would buy it. As he goes out and takes the painting, Kaoru is left dumbfounded – what about the money?!

As she narrates the end of the episode, she says that the golden knight from the picture book appeared before her eyes on that day. However. she says it’s only the beginning of a new knight’s legend.

Impression

Oh lawd, I love this series. Along with its awesome special effects and fighting choreography, this series escapes the mold of most live-action henshin shows by cruelly having no mercy for the “victims” in most of the episodes, this show’s not afraid to show blood or sexual situations – appealing to the teen and adult demography. (; I found the soundtrack quite awesome, especially the instrumental version of the opening played during the episode previews.

Along with Kouga having a completely awesome and cool actor, his Madou Ring (Zaruba) is voiced by Hironobu Kageyama, which is pretty damn awesome.

Next Episode

Don’t tell me you’d all depend on a Horror? They’re always looking for a chance to get into your hearts, you know. Next time: “Yin Self”! In your hearts, there is a shadow.

Yin Self 陰我

One thought on “GARO 01 – Picture Book”

  1. WOW, this is so awesome with lots of screen capture…GRRRREAT JOB! Thanks for sharing this excellent show with a class of its own!

    Yeah GARO rocks even for mature audience like me and no I’m not a fan of this kind of drama at all. But this one is really good, very well executed, very intriguing story and one of the most sensible reason why the heroine will always be a damsel in distress and need our knight in shining golden armour to save her every time! Their romance have such a fairy tales element to it with a much darker tones and so bittersweet! Loved everything about this drama especially the romance between Kouga & Kaoru..simply GREAT!

    You should really visit this blog by MITRA, she is so seriously obsessed with GARO that she write such fantastic analysis of this show here in multi-languages:

    http://mitra-water.blogspot.com/

    Hope to read your comment there too! Thanks again and hope that you will complete the whole 25 episodes & the Special as well!

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