Emu Hojo is both a trainee doctor and also a lover of video games. These two sides to his life come together in an unexpected way one day when he discovers the existence of a deadly virus threatening humanity, known as the Bugster. Now he’ll have to battle the viruses’ monstrous manifestations as the gaming doctor, Kamen Rider Ex-Aid!
Actually, it’s about Medics in Games Journalism.
Zigg’s verdict: Life Support
As I say every year, it’s pretty tough to judge what’s going to be a year-long season from one 22 minute episode. That said, wow this was pretty bad. Emu himself seems genially bland in the way many modern Riders are, and they lay some intriguing seeds for the future what with the prospect of multiple Riders showing up rapidly. That’s not enough to excuse the multiple other sins on display though. The videogame motif somehow manages to make the entire thing feel even more merchandise driven than before, something i didn’t actually think was possible. Ex-Aid’s chibi form seems like the kind of dumb joke you’d pull up for a filler episode halfway through the show’s run and I can’t say I’m particularly enamoured with his ‘proper’ form either. Even the fight’s are lame, the cool martial arts action buried beneath a flurry of shitty special effects and logos flashing on screen. And the less said about the giant CGI poop monsters the better.
Iro’s verdict: Dead On Arrival
I’m not sure who thought doctors and gamers go together, and it turns out the result was bad! Who knew? The gaming angle is insultingly surface level (barring a gag where Kamen Rider Ex-Aid blows into his power-up cartridge before slotting it in, a joke that’s 10 years too old for the show’s target audience), and the doctor thing doesn’t look like it brings anything to the party either. Add in terrible suit designs and terrible CGI poop monsters, and there’s just nothing here that makes me want to keep watching. Guess I’ll look towards the past if I want to watch a Kamen Rider show…
Euri’s verdict: Emergency Bypass
It is almost fascinating just how awful this first episode was. I really don’t have many positives to mention, but I’m going to try:
- The director and his dumb faces are pretty okay.
- Ex-Aid’s level two form looks pretty swish. I love how it screams of 80s video game advertising.
- Ex-Aid blowing into the cartridge before transforming was literally the best thing in the entire episode.
Unfortunately, that’s all I’ve got. Perhaps I’ll give episode two a watch, but I really think this show is dead on arrival. And, as was the case with Ghost last year, Megwin did Ex-Aid better: