Samurai Jack: Episode XCIII (5.2)
Samurai Jack’s final season got off to an amazing start with its premiere episode which delivered some of the best action sequences and emotion I’ve seen on television in some time – but Episode XCIII was even better.
Samurai Jack: Episode XCIII begins on a lighter note than the premiere as viewers are treated to Aku’s first scenes of the season where we find that much like Jack, Aku is suffering in his own way. You see, while Jack is haunted by his past and being stranded in the future all these years, Aku is haunted by Jack still being around after all this time. It becomes apparent after a hilarious opening scene (which sees Aku acting as his own therapist) that the samurai’s immortality has become a nuisance to him, leaving the master of darkness restless and eager to see him gone for good. I’d like to take a moment here to praise the acting of Greg Baldwin who has stepped in to replace the late Mako Iwamatsu as Aku, as he does a fantastic job of bringing the character back to life in a way that only he could after doing the same in Avatar: The Last Airbender when replacing Mako’s character Iroh.
Following on from Aku’s seasonal introduction are the Daughters of Aku, who have managed to catch up to Jack and start a battle that kept me absolutely gripped throughout the entire episode. In the middle of all the intensity, Jack finds himself having to hide from them as he clearly was not prepared at all for the battle, or how strong and ruthless these girls are. It’s at this point in the episode that the emotion really kicks in as Jack is once again haunted by a hallucination of his past self, this time trying to convince him to end his own life to rejoin his deceased family. It’s the absolute brutality of scenes like these that’s got me gripped on this season, and I just know this isn’t the peak of Jack’s emotional journey.
There is also a side story being told this episode which focuses on a mysterious white wolf which is seen fighting a pack of ferocious tiger-like beasts, which I believe is meant to parallel Jack and his current situation with the Daughters of Aku. I really hope we see more of this in the coming episodes, as it was one of the most beautiful uses of symbolism I’ve seen on television in so long and an absolutely gorgeous scene to behold. I can safely say after only two half hour episodes of Samurai Jack’s fifth and final season that I am absolutely gripped and not one to miss.
Samurai Jack airs Thursdays at 12am on FOX.Powered by Sidelines