We left off last week with the intense, scary gaze of Goku gone berserk, and that’s exactly where we pick up this week. Goku rips a few people apart before the Merciful Goddess comes in and knocks him out. Touten orders the soldiers to kill the four of them, so Konzen runs off with Goku, with Kenren and Tenpou taking the Dragon King hostage to stave them off. When Goku wakes up, he attacks Konzen, but Konzen speaks to him, and Goku’s power inhibitor comes back. The four of them decide the only way to protect Goku is to send him down to earth.
They start making their way. In some underground tunnels, they are attacked by a group of giant monsters, Nataku’s failed predecessors. Kenren stays behind to fight them, and is eventually eaten. They get back above ground in a storage room, and Tenpou goes to take out the guards, getting killed in the process. Konzen and Goku make it to the gateway that leads to earth, but they are cornered by Touten and his soldiers. They are attacked, but Konzen manages to get the gate open. They make a run for it, but Touten presses a button to close it before dying. Konzen tries to keep the gate open with his body so Goku can run through, but Goku refuses to leave without him. Konzen is crushed to dust by the door, leaving Goku to collapse in anguish over all that remains of his friend.
The Merciful Goddess finds Goku still in that position a long time after everything ended. He attacks her, but she embraces him and he loses consciousness. Goku has his memories of heaven erased, except for one that they couldn’t get rid of: his name. He remains alone in his prison on Earth for 500 years, until the day Sanzo found him. Back in the present, the guys continue on their journey, Nataku has disappeared, and the Merciful Goddess senses a storm brewing.
I’ve seen Saiyuki: Gaiden, so I knew what was coming, but it was still a gut punch of an episode. We learn a little about Goku’s true form and name. The raw, powerful feelings they all have for each other are what hits hardest, especially when you watch as, one by one, each of them sacrifices themselves for Goku. And seeing Konzen confess his feelings to Goku in the moment of his death, followed by Goku’s face is absolutely heartbreaking. This was a great episode. Knowing all of this background is sure to amp up what happens in the rest of the story to follow, so be sure to join me next week for episode 7!