Episode Guide to Saiyuki Reload GUNLOCK
#3: Swift Current ~against the stream~ (Gekiryuu)
Script: Touko Machida (also wrote Saiyuki RELOAD #3, 7, 9, 17, 18, 19 & 23);
Storyboards: Hiroyuki Shimazu (also storyboarded Saiyuki RELOAD #11, 16, 18 & 25);
Episode Director: Kunitoshi Okajima (also directed Saiyuki RELOAD #3, 9, 16 & 21);
Animation Supervisor: Kensuke Aiba (also supervised Saiyuki RELOAD #21 and co-supervised #9)
First broadcast in Japan 4/15/2004
Directly from manga: Saiyuki RELOAD vol. 2, Act 6 "against the stream-1", Act 7 "against the stream-2" and first few pages of Act 8 "against the stream-3."
Goku and Gojyo are complaining about the heat, Goku saying how he'd love to cool off in a river somewhere. Hakkai checks the map: as it happens, they're just about to come to one. And so they do, but there's no bridge, nor boats available. A local kid tells them they won't be able to cross the river, but dashes off without saying why. Sanzo, fed up with saru/kappa squabbling, grazes them with a couple of shots and stalks off with Hakkai to seek a way across, snarling that those two should be tied to stones and tossed in to drown.
At Houtou Castle: the old youkai 01, playing chess with Dr. Ni, is saying that rivers can't be underestimated; they may look calm on the surface but have powerful currents below, reminding humans how weak they are. And speaking of rivers, wasn't there a child named Kouryuu...? Dr. Hwang storms up, saying this is no time for Ni to be playing games: Lady GK is breathing down their necks about Kougaiji's progress and the need to acquire the sutras. Ni, moving his knight, casually says that something will surely happen soon. You're so sure of yourself, but you'll trip and fall flat on your face one day, she mutters. He thinks not. Nothing can trip me--I'm a ghost, he says. [--heh. Japanese ghosts have no feet, remember?]
A local [judging by the piles of nets in his house, a fisherman] explains to the SI that a year ago youkai took over the river, and have destroyed any boat that tries to cross. But we're traveling west and have to get across, says Gojyo. Well, if they drive into the mountains, they'll probably find a suspension bridge...but it'll take them about two months to reach it. Well, that will never do. ==Ah, says Hakkai, so that's why that boy we met said it was impossible to get across. You met Kon?--says the man in surprise, and tells them that the kid is from the village on the other side. He came here on an errand for his parents, and has been trapped here by this village's refusal to send out a boat. His mother and little sister are waiting for him across the river...Really a shame, says the man, and he's so young.
Goku finds Kon skipping rocks across the water, and remarks that he's never been on a boat; even though he's a strong swimmer, he says, he doubts he could get across a river this wide. I told you guys there's no way across, replies the kid, sad and angry; I've asked many times, but the
reply is always the same. It's hard, says Goku sympathetically, to see something right in front of you and not be able to reach it. ===Sanzo says that he has no intention of wasting time crossing mountains, and Gojyo yells to Goku that they're getting a boat. Goku grins: you'll come with us, right? he asks Kon, who gulps in alarm.
The ikkou buys the fisherman's boat; the man says uneasily that no one in the village will be their steersman, and the ikkou all look expectantly at Gojyo, who, it turns out, knows how. =) Soon enough they're headed downriver [with the cliffs so steep, they apparently have to go down aways to find a place on the far side to land], Goku excitedly enjoying himself and Kon thanking them for bringing him along, while Gojyo grumbles about doing all the work. (Hakuryu seems especially pleased to be a passenger for a change. =) The current is calm and Gojyo thinks they'll get there soon, but a whirlpool suddenly opens up under the boat--so they've come, says Sanzo grimly. Youkai lunge onto the boat, gleefully yelling 'food!' Kon slides overboard and is grabbed by Goku; they both go over. Goku manages to plant one end of the nyoi-bo in the bank and he and Kon hang on while the boat is swept downstream, Hakkai calling to him that they'll have to regroup later. The ikkou-minus-9 find their boat surrounded by dozens of angry water-youkai, but fight back in good style, capped off by Sanzo's summoning the sutra's powers (without pronouncing the usual chant) to throw them all clear of the raiders' grip. As they cling dazedly to various debris, unable to think of a way to leave the river (there's literally nothing but sheer rock walls on either bank), they're greeted by, of all parties, Doku and Yaone, calling down from the top of the cliff. Surprised to see their foes, they politely ask if the SI happen to have seen Kougaiji. While Sanzo fumes at being caught by their arch-enemies in such an embarrassing predicament, Hakkai just as politely replies that they have not; whereupon they apologize and depart (as Gojyo tries to find out what's happened to the prince, and Sanzo indignantly yells that they could have helped the ikkou out of the river first =).
Goku, Kon and Hakuryu, however, have scaled the cliff and are at last on the other side of the river. Goku reassures the kid that the others are probably fine and will soon catch up if they can go and wait at his house. Kon runs eagerly ahead, saying his mother and sister will be very happy--this way, onii-chan!
But the village they reach is a deserted ruin--windows broken, trees bare, things lying discarded in the street. Kon runs into a house, calling for his mother and sister, but there's nothing there but overturned furniture. What am I going to do? he desperately asks Goku. It looks like a demon attack, they must already be dead-- Goku calms him down, pointing out that while he's probably right about the attack, they're seeing no bodies or blood. The townsfolk must just be in hiding, so let's go find them, he reassures the kid.
Kon heads for the cave where the villagers used to shelter from floods, and sure enough they're all there, including his mom and sister. Touching reunion ensues. The villagers confirm it was a youkai attack that drove them here, and say they're planning to go back soon; but a demon horde is already massing on the
cliffs above, gloating over having flushed the villagers out of their hiding place.
And while Hakkai notes that D&Y appear to know the newcomer, the cloaked youkai says "Lady Gyakomen never trusted you two in the first place," and announces that his objective here is the assassination of the Sanzo-ikkou. They stand up, ready to fight. Yaone cries out "Be careful! don't look into his eyes!" but it's too late for that, and they find themselves seemingly transported to a dark place
lit by candles and heaped with skulls. I have you now--you can never escape from my world of illusions, laughs the youkai. [Yup; it's Zakuro.]
Go on to next episode.
They pause uncomfortably. Well...begins Yaone; and then a voice interrupts: 'that's enough'. He walks into the impromptu camp, a lilac-haired youkai with green eyes, dressed in a ragged purple cloak. Do you plan on betraying us, Dokugakuji and Yaone? he asks.
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Kon heads for the cave where the villagers used to shelter from floods, and sure enough they're all there, including his mom and sister. Touching reunion ensues. The villagers confirm it was a youkai attack that drove them here, and say they're planning to go back soon; but a demon horde is already massing on the cliffs above, gloating over having flushed the villagers out of their hiding place.
And while Hakkai notes that D&Y appear to know the newcomer, the cloaked youkai says "Lady Gyakomen never trusted you two in the first place," and announces that his objective here is the assassination of the Sanzo-ikkou. They stand up, ready to fight. Yaone cries out "Be careful! don't look into his eyes!" but it's too late for that, and they find themselves seemingly transported to a dark place lit by candles and heaped with skulls. I have you now--you can never escape from my world of illusions, laughs the youkai. [Yup; it's Zakuro.]
Go on to next episode.