Welcome to Anime Asterisk. For today’s episode , I shall be covering Deca-Dence Episode 5 – Differential Gear!
Differential Gear begins with Natsume and the other gear warriors shipping out for the Gadoll’s nest. On the battlefield, Natsume and the rest of Team 6 head for the Gadoll’s nest as Kurenai and the others fight off the smaller Gadoll. In another part of the battlefield, a purple avatar named Dotkin (who resembles Donatello from Episode 2) slashes his way through a group of Gadoll with his squad mates. Finishing off the lot, Dotkin contacts the system to get a status update. Noticing the list of defeated rankers, Dotkin remarks that its strange since the mission they were assigned is a C-ranked mission.
Meanwhile, Natsume’s team makes it to the nest. Moving in, the squad comes across a single Gadoll surrounded by dead gears. Noticing Team 6, the Gadoll (Gadoll Alpha) releases its barrier and immediately goes to attack them. Fighting back, the first wave of warriors get instantly defeated by the Gadoll who deliberately aims for their tank. Unsettled, Mindy orders Natsume and Mendy to fall back. However, Natsume loses her cool once again and zooms straight towards the Gadoll.
Despite her best attempts to fend it off, Natsume gets slammed into a wall by the Gadoll. Suddenly, Natsume hears Mundy call out Mindy’s name and opens her eyes to see an injured Mindy right in front of her. Holding her, Natsume asks why Mindy did that. Weak, Mindy replies that she was just sick and tired of watching kids charge in and die. Turning to Natsume, Mindy tells Natsume not to blame herself before passing out.
Raising her head, Natsume looks towards the scene of defeated warriors. Watching the scene, Mundy and Mendy both remark that they will be defeated at this rate. Not deterred, Natsume hands Mindy’s body over to Mundy and charges at the Gadoll again. Quickly gaining the upper hand, Natsume manages to pierce the beast with one of her needles. However, the Gadoll easily pulls it out and heals its injuries. Holding the needle with its tail, Gadoll Alpha throws it at Natsume. Before Natsume can be killed, however, Kaburagi arrives and blocks the blow.
The scene then changes to an hour earlier in Chimney Town. Kaburagi is sitting on the bench when he sees Natsume leave with The Power on the screen. Shocked, Kaburagi instantly rushes to log in and grab supplies from the Gear level. Loading up his car, Kaburagi contacts Minato and asks if Gadoll Alpha can be stopped without the system knowing. Minato replies that of course, it can’t and asks what Kaburagi is planning. Kaburagi lies and tells Minato that he is going to warm up by battling some of the weaker Gadoll. But before Minato can rebut, Kaburagi ends the call and drives off into the snowy wasteland.
Back in the present, Kaburagi engages Gadoll Alpha. Firing some needles with his gun, Kaburagi manages to pin the beast down to the ground. Using the chance to escape, Kaburagi pulls Natsume out of the battlefield using the fog for cover. Outside the battlefield, Natsume insists on going back for her squad mates. But Kaburagi insists against it , stating that they cannot beat the Gadoll and doing so would be suicide. Frustrated, Natsume tells Kaburagi that she swore to always push herself to her limits and heads back into the battlefield. Motionless, Kaburagi recalls Mikey saying the same words and chases after her.
Inside the Gadoll’s barrier, Mundy, Mendy and the rest of the squad are about to lose all hope; when they spot Natsume and Kaburagi attacking the Gadoll. Leaping over to Mundy’s location, Natsume tells everyone to withdraw, while Kaburagi distracts the Gadoll. During the fighting, Minato contacts Kaburagi and demands to know what he is doing. Apologizing, Kaburagi declares that he cannot let the Tankers die, especially Natsume. Minato warns Kaburagi that this is a bad idea and that he could be scrapped if he continues doing this. Shoved against a wall, Kaburagi reveals that Natsume is a bug to Minato and declares that she is the one who saved him. Kaburagi then activates his limiter release mode and demolishes the Gadoll.
At the Deca-Dence’s command center, Minato and his team are trying to process the situation. Without warning, one of the female staffers announce that the air pressure is returning to normal, causing Minato to panic. Out of the blue, a quake occurs and a gigantic hand rises out of the ground. Crushing the Gadoll’s nest, the hand blows away all of the nearby warriors as a massive Gadoll rises up from the mountain.
Safely outside, Natsume stares up in shock. Meanwhile, Chimney Town is in panic mode over the scenario change. In the Solid Quake control room, Sully and the other admins are trying to fix the situation. Minato then pops up on the screen and orders Sully and Sonny to withdraw the Stargate Gadoll. Sonny yells that they can’t and demand that Minato resolve the situation on his end. Minato orders the staff to release the Deca-Dence’s main weapon, while the warriors distract it. Meanwhile, Hugin has discovered Kaburagi’s insubordination.
As everyone attacks the Stargate, one of the Stargate’s bubbles starts pussing and leaking oxyone. Suddenly, the Stargate starts charging up its oxyone levels. Reaching full power, the Stargate fires a massive beam blast that almost destroys the area. Noticing it, Kaburagi realizes that the creature is incomplete. Stealing a weapon from a nearby Gear, Kaburagi uses it to destroy the Stargate’s leg, before it can fire on the Deca-Dence. Fully charged, the Deca-Dence then attacks the creature with its gigantic fist, decimating the creature and the mountain behind it.
After the battle, everyone watches the sunrise together as they tend to their wounded. Watching the sunrise with delight, Natsume notices the grim expression on Kaburagi’s face. Asking about it, Kaburagi tells Natsume to just be quiet. Minato then contacts Kaburagi and tells him that he is in big trouble this time. Knowing that he will not get off scot-free, Kaburagi replies that he is prepared for any punishment. Suddenly, the barrier disappears, revealing a massive field of various Gadoll. Stunned, the Tankers start despairing as the Gears celebrate the birth of a new stage.
Seeing the sight, Natsume collapses to her knees and asks Kaburagi if he knew about this. Kaburagi just quietly tells Natsume to take care of Pipe for him and departs. At the top of a nearby mountain, Kaburagi meets with Hugin who tries to get him to say that bugs are unneeded. Smiling, Kaburagi declares that bugs are needed as Hugin’s crow (Mugin) shoots Kaburagi, knocking him out.
It also seems that Solid Quake Corporation has indeed been making the Gadoll after all. It’s not a very surprising reveal, since it was revealed earlier in the season that the world is manufactured. But now that the story scenario has been changed, I’m interested in seeing the direction the story will head from now on. Natsume is also taking the revelation particularly hard. Now that she no longer has Kaburagi to guide her, Natsume may have trouble coming to grips with the fact that her battles may never be over. But, while this may be a despair event horizon for her, I’m sure she will come back stronger from it. I’m also hoping that the two will meet again soon.