Golden Kamuy Ep. 7: Boner defeated

We know that Tetsuzou will lose his life. The only question is if Retar will also survive. 

— I feel like this should be an easy fight with Shiraishi’s help, but unfortunately, the guy can barely handle a dog on his own.

— Shiraishi finally gets his hands on a rifle, but Tanigaki somehow manages to take Asirpa hostage. I wish we could’ve seen how that happened. I guess he just snuck up on her.

— Tanigaki drags Asirpa away so that she doesn’t have to see her partners-in-crime die at Tetsuzou’s hands. In the meantime, boner guy ties Sugimoto and Shiraishi up. He conveniently forgets, however, that Shiraishi is the notorious Escape King, so our heroes quickly free themselves easily… within seconds of being tied up, too.

— Tanigaki can’t even get far without walking right into a trap. Asirpa could’ve just left him behind, but she’s too kind. She’s willing to help the guy out even though he’s after Retar. Even if she can forgive this, there’s still no reason to assume that he’s a good person.

— There’s apparently no antidote for the poison, so she ends up just having to carve the affected chunk of flesh out of Tanigaki’s leg. Brutal. He doesn’t even get painkillers to cope with the pain. Luckily, they have a lot of snow around them to keep the swelling down.

— Because she stuck around to help the soldier, it’s Tetsuzou’s turn to take Asirpa hostage. Welp. Personally, I would’ve run. I wouldn’t have helped Tanigaki, but I guess she’s a better person than me.

— Why are these guys so confident that Retar is the last wolf? I’m especially confused that Asirpa believes this, because didn’t he leave her to specifically live with his own kind?

— Well, I obviously hope the wolf won’t die. We’ll see what happens, though.

— A new challenger has appeared! I guess Japanese wolves aren’t extinct after all.

— Maybe what they meant was that he’s the last silver wolf in all of Japan or something, but whatever. This isn’t really that important in the grand scheme of things.

— Still, I’m surprised to see Tetsuzou go down within the first third of the episode. I assumed that it would take all episode for the good guys to overcome the beastly hunter. After all that talk about his boner, you’d think it would put up a better fight.

— Well, doesn’t this just make your heart melt?

— Oh hey, look at all of Retar’s babies. The wolf has been keeping itself quite busy ever since it stopped living with Asirpa. I’m kinda surprised that Retar has never taken the girl to see his family and vice versa.

— Now she remembers why Retar left her in the first place?

— I don’t really get the sad music being played here. Is it supposed to be a tragedy that Tetsuzou died or something? I have no sympathy whatsoever for the guy. He was a nasty man who hunted just for the thrill of it. I don’t have anything against hunting for survival, but the man clearly did not need anything from Retar.

— Our heroes end up taking Tanigaki and the dog all the way back to her village. I say “all the way back,” but I really have no grasp of the distances between all these locations. It actually feels kinda odd to me that the entire story seems to be unfolding within such small radius.

— According to Asirpa, the shiba wouldn’t abandon its owner unless they take him with them. They really should just adopt the dog.

— It wouldn’t be a Golden Kamuy episode without a stew. Granted, the world around them is blanketed in snow, so there really isn’t any better option than yet another damn meat stew.

— Yes, Sugimoto, tell us how delicious the food is.

— I-is she actually trying to pull a reverse psychology on miso?

— Man, that bear is so cute. Too bad the village will kill it in two years.

— The Ainu hang slices of salmon off of a tree until it freezes, so when they finally get aroudn to eating it, the flesh melts in their mouths. I love salmon, but I dunno if I’d enjoy that mouthfeel.

— I guess Tetsuzou died early so that we can learn more about Ainu history/folklore. The biggest revelation here is that the hidden cache of Ainu gold might actually bigger than we had initially believed.

— You really can’t get too greedy, or you’ll just shoot yourself in the foot. A ton of gold sounds cool, but how would you transport it? How would you trade all of it without alerting people’s suspicions?

— Tanigaki has regained consciousness, so we now get some backstory on Tsurumi and the 7th Division. Basically, everything is the government’s fault. Tsurumi is still an unhinged, cruel bastard, but his bitterness is justified to a certain extent. Only a certain extent, though. Unfortunately, he doesn’t just want justice for his fallen soldiers. He also wants power. He wants to install a military dictatorship with himself at the very top. As flawed as the current government might be, I doubt the country would fare much better under Tsurumi.

— Plus, he doesn’t even have the people on his side. That’s why he needs the hidden Ainu gold so badly. He literally needs a pie in the sky scheme to work out in fund his insurrection. Even if he manages to overthrow the government, his rule wouldn’t likely be very stable. Plus, do you really want these arms dealers to have all the money?

— Yeah, fuck his burden.

— Our hero assures Shiraishi that he’s not gonna quit now. But honestly, if there really is that much gold, Sugimoto doesn’t need all of it. He just needs enough to fulfill his promise to his former partner. He could easily leave the rest to the dogs. Asirpa doesn’t really want the gold either. The only person who seems to be interested in being wealthy is Shiraishi — not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Uh, okay.

— Towards the end of the episode, we get to see what Hijikata has been up to. Maybe he’ll finally meet Sugimoto, since I don’t believe those two even know that the other person exists.

— That’s… interesting.

— Unfortunately, Shiraishi carelessly runs into Ushiyama at a brothel. The latter is so fearsome that he can throw a horse to the ground with just one hand. As his last resort, Shiraishi sics some of the 7th Division soldiers on Ushiyama, and that’s where our episode finally comes to an end. But you can probably safely assume that the dude will easily survive this encounter somehow. Maybe their bullets will all bounce off his weird forehead.

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