Hokuto no Ken Episode 4
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Attack the Bloody Cross!! Secret Technique, Ju Hazan
-From Rage Quitter 87's Fist of the North Star site


For a detailed overview of this episode, click here.

Kenshiro encounters Heart, a gigantic martial artist.
Original broadcast date: 1st November 1984

Contents
1) Synopsis
2) In the manga...
3) Notes
4) Errors




Synopsis

Heart and his army have been assigned to find and kill the man with seven scars. Heart himself walks into a bar and stops some of his men from killing a bartender, only to cut his hand on some glass. Seeing his own blood sends him into a frenzy and he kills everyone in the bar. Meanwhile, Kenshiro finds out from Lin that the truck she was hiding in was later attacked by a gang, and she was taken to Dorado city. There were about 30 more people taken prisoner with her and they were all put into a certain building. Ken decides to rescue them and head to an outpost, where Ken defeats the guards and then releases the prisoners.

Meanwhile, King is trying to impress Yuria by giving her jewels, but she rejects his gifts and says she can only see the suffering people went through to get them. As she walks off, King is not happy as he cannot get Yuria to open his heart to her. He then finds out from Joker that Heart should soon find Kenshiro. Out in the desert, Ken, Bat and Lin are trying to lead the freed prisoners to safety, when a motorbike gang appears. Bat and Lin lead the prisoners as Kenshiro fights the punks off, but the two encounter Heart and another gang. Heart's men kill the prisoners, whilst Bat and Lin only just escape with their lives.

Ken defeats Heart's gang and then fights Heart himself, only for his punch to get stuck inside Heart's body. Heart gleefully tells him that his body is like rubber and that it can cushion him from any attack, and then he smacks Kenshiro into the ground. He says that only King's fighting style, Nanto Seiken, is the only style which can defeat him. Kenshiro knows of this style, but he says Hokuto Shinken is invincible and uses a technique called Hokuto Ju Hazan to soften Heart's body up. He punches him again and this time, his fist hits a pressure point which kills Heart. Ken thinks that this man known as "King" is actually someone else...the man he crawled out of hell to defeat...Shin!




In the manga...


-The manga version of this episode starts with Ken and Bat watching some prisoners been taken into Southern Cross to be branded with the bloody cross symbol (burnt onto their bodies with a red hot poker). This is where Ken recognises the symbol, rather than the flag they used in the anime.

-And yeah, things are pretty different between the manga and anime at this point. Lin is not present, she doesn't come back until the God Army arc. Ken and Bat are in Southern Cross, Shin's city, whilst in the anime they don't get to Southern Cross until right near the end of the first chapter.

-The scene in the bar was slightly more violent in the manga, as one of the clubs goes through a punk's eye when Heart launches them at everyone. The anime added a small extra scene where Heart crushes two guys into a wall, which wasn't present in the manga.

-The manga has no plot about Ken rescuing prisoners -as soon as Ken sees the above mentioned symbol branding, he runs straight towards Shin's fortress.

-In the manga, Ken faces Heart inside Shin's fortress, and Shin himself is there to witness the battle. In the anime, Ken faces Heart in a desert and Shin is not present. The battle basically goes the same way in either media, but Shin sets Heart off on a rampage in the manga whilst Joker does it in the anime.

-Speaking of Joker, he was never in the manga -he is an anime exclusive character.




Notes

-This episode has an awful lot of stock animation in it. The animation of Ken ripping open the cell bars was from the first episode. The animation sequence of the punks throwing their clubs is used twice, there is a downright lazy edit of Ken used twice when fighting some guys, characters sometimes look off-model (especially King) and yeah, not one of the highlights of the series, animation wise. Bad Toei.











Errors

-Some of the prisoners are children. These kids mysteriously vanish during the trek through the desert.

-Due to the stock footage, several punks seemingly die twice in this episode...unless everyone of them has an identical twin brother.

-When Heart bounces down the hill, Ken is drawn with his jacket on, when he ripped it apart earlier.







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