Samurai Jack – Episode XVIII: Jack and the Ultra-robots

by Alan Rapp on April 7, 2020

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: Samurai Jack – Episode XVIII: Jack and the Ultra-robots
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Samurai Jack - Episode XVIII: Jack and the Ultra-robots television review

Throwback Tuesday takes us back to the adventures of the time-displaced samurai and his quest to make his way home. Following a trail of destruction, Jack (Phil LaMarr) discovers multiple villages and cities destroyed by a cadre of Ultra-robots designed by the scientist Extor (Jeff Bennett) and powered by the evil of Aku (Mako). The structure of the episode allows for a long lead-in with Jack putting together the pieces of what has occurred from survivors of the attacks and finally from the scientist himself who was tricked into believing that in helping Aku he would save his own village from destruction.

The robots are an interesting mix of ancient and modern, not unlike our hero, and provide a visually-appealing foe to be vanquished (especially in the early scenes where they are slowly revealed). Writers Bryan Andrews and Brian Larsen honor Marvel Comics by having Extor craft his murderous robots out of the fictional metal adamantium (known for giving one of the most famous X-Men his claws). Jack’s inability to defeat the robots (at least initially) without the help of a “cybernetic, synaptically-linked dinodextric isometric poly-durataniam power gauntlet” marks one of the few times Aku’s robots were a match for the samurai. On calling on his ancestors, and ultimately vanquishing his foe, the show offers a look back at the creation of the sword (which would be heavily expanded on this years later in Jack’s search for the missing sword in “Episode XCVIII”).

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