Episode 15: Winning Through Intimidation (Rend the Darkness! Sealing Swords of Light)
[Note: For US broadcast, Episodes 14 and 15 were edited together and shown as one episode. This recap is based on the complete episode included on the US DVD release.]
Joey is impressed by Yugi's smooth move—he caught one of Panik's most powerful monsters, and now he's got two magic cards on the table, to boot. (There's no dialog in the Japanese. And Yugi's field still shows all three magic and trap cards face down, even though Spellbinding Circle has been played.) But Panik says, so what? Yugi captured his Reaper, but that's only one of his powerful monsters. (This is the shot of Panik that was added to the end of the previous episode in the US version. Japanese Player Killer wonders what card Yugi set. Can it be a trap card?)
Now it's Yugi's turn to taunt Panik, saying he may not have launched an effective attack yet, but that will change soon. He renews his promise to beat Panik in five turns. Now Panik's the one getting nervous. Yugi tells Panik he's got four turns left. (Cut from the US version is this shot of a whole bunch of 4s rushing at the screen, followed by a big, bright numeral four.)
(Also cut is a bit of the the split-screen that follows, showing the Player Killer above and the "4" below.)
Four turns before Yugi drags Panik from his shadows and shows him up for the bully he really is.
Panik is mad now, asking if Yugi's forgotten who he's facing. He's Panik, the Eliminator! (The Japanese Player Killer keeps calling Yugi "Kozou," which means "boy" or "kid.") He turns on the flames again, but Yugi just stands calmly between them, asking if that's supposed to scare him. (Japanese Yugi says it's the Player Killer's turn, and tells him to hurry up and draw.) Téa says Yugi's' playing with fire—she hopes he knows what he's doing. And Joey agrees—Panik's playing for keeps. Oh yeah, Mai says, Panik enjoys breaking people down, watching them sweat. For him, dueling is just an excuse to practice his cruelty. (Japanese Anzu says Yugi's overcoming the Player Killer with words. Jounouchi asks Mai if that's really Yugi's "trump card," and she says yes. The Player Killer has the advantage of the darkness, but he's also being played around by Yugi's words. Now he's in a bad position. Good going, Yugi!)
Yugi tells Panik he can't stall forever. With a trembling hand, Panik draws his next card. But then he laughs triumphantly, and announces that this beast will win the match for him. He summons King of Yamimakai (Supreme Ruler of the Dark Demon World) (2000 ATK).
Powered up by the field power bonus, it's far stronger than Yugi's creature. He orders King of Yamimakai to attack Yugi's Curse of Dragon. But Yugi smiles, as King of Yamimakai's Shock Attack veers away and destroys Reaper of the Cards instead. (The Japanese Player Killer has the kanji for "yami," or "darkness," on his cap, which is removed in the US version.)
The gang cheer as Panik's life points go down to 494, and Panik curses Yugi's Spellbinding Circle, which drew in his monster's attack. Yugi says Panik's monsters don't do well when they step out of the darkness.
Now, Yugi activates Swords of Revealing Light, dispelling the darkness hiding Panik's monsters. Panik cowers from the brightness, saying, stop it! He can't stand the light. The light forms into shining swords around Panik's monsters, exposing them. Tristan cheers that no one keeps Yugi in the dark, and Téa adds that Panik's cards are revealed, as Yugi's readout of Panik's side of the field clears. Three turns left, Yugi says, and then Panik's finished. (And, in the Japanese, here come the flying 3s!)
Yugi adds that he didn't use Swords of Revealing Light just to reveal Panik's monsters—it also causes them to be frozen, preventing them from attacking for three turns.
Panik's getting a little twitchy now, but tries to reassure himself, thinking that Yugi's only monster on the field is Curse of Dragon, while he still has three strong monsters—Barox (1380 ATK, raised to 1794 by the field power bonus), Dark Chimera (1610 ATK, raised to 2093), and King of Yamimakai (2000 ATK, raised to 2600). (As before, Barox has the purple background of a fusion monster in the US version, as the real card in the videogames does, but it's a normal monster in the Japanese.)
After three turns, they'll be free again, and Yugi will beg him to end this duel! (Japanese Player Killer thinks that Yugi's Curse of Dragon can destroy Barox, but even if he loses that monster, the others will be safe.) But Yugi tells Panik he's stalling, and asks if he's afraid to draw his next card. Panik grumbles to himself that Yugi continues to goad him. Usually, his opponents are sobbing and broken by now, but Yugi's not like the others. He'll relish crushing Yugi's spirit. (Japanese Player Killer thinks that if Yugi uses fusion to summon a high-attack monster....)
Panik draws, then laughs, and tells Yugi he can forget his foolish delusion of beating him in three turns. He's drawn the Chaos Shield (this is the Japanese name of the card—the real card's English name is Yellow Luster Shield, and it's been given a slight redesign in the US version),
which he lays down on the field. Yugi realizes that this card puts all of Panik's monsters in defense mode, and raises their defense by 300 points. Panik says that he can combine this card with his Castle of Dark Illusions to project a defensive shield over his entire area. A shield of light forms around the Swords surrounding Panik's monsters.
Mai says now Yugi can't get near Panik's monsters. Téa asks what that means, and Mai says Panik's untouchable, while Yugi's a sitting duck! (Japanese Mai says that Yugi's enemy is no ordinary person.)
Panik gloats that as long as the Chaos Shield is in place, Yugi's monsters can't touch him. Does he still think he can beat Panik in three turns? (The pan of the field is moved here in the US version. In the Japanese, it comes at the end of Player Killer's gloating, right before Mai speaks. These scenes are shifted around because of the commercial break that was added here to the US version. In the US, there are three commercial breaks per episode, but only one in Japan, which makes the episodes about two minutes shorter when they're aired in the US. A lot of little cuts are made to the aired episodes to accommodate the shorter US running time. This lost footage is added back to the US DVD releases.)
The Shield has raised the defense points of all of his monsters—the Castle of Dark Illusions now has a defense of 3200, while Dark Chimera, Barox, and King of Yamimakai's defenses all rise to 2600. Yugi thinks Panik's right—that shield protects against any attack, even from Yugi's strongest monsters.
Panik laughs, and Mai, her hand shaking, says Yugi doesn't stand a chance. Panik is brutal, ruthless—everything the ultimate duelist needs to be. Bakura says she's become so cynical about Duel Monsters, and she doesn't understand Yugi at all. There's much more to him than meets the eye. Tristan grabs Joey by the shoulder, saying that Yugi can win this, can't he? But even Joey isn't sure what Panik's chances are. (Japanese Mai notes that the Player Killer has increased his monsters' defenses—he's concentrating on consolidating his defense capability. Bakura agrees, saying that Yugi's strategy is mostly to attack. But when the opponent consolidates his defense capability, Yugi can't boldly attack. Honda asks Jounouchi if there isn't any other way for Yugi, but Jounouchi says, how should he know? Mai wonders how Yugi will respond to such a comprehensive defense network.)
Panik demands that Yugi give up and admit defeat. (Japanese Player Killer tells Yugi it's his turn.) Yugi, though, isn't worried. He just laughs, saying Panik wins through intimidation, not through skill. He figured out Panik's strategy the minute he saw what kind of man Panik is. He knew Panik would play Chaos Shield—cowardly bullies always try to hide behind something. Panik's losing it, sweating and shouting at Yugi to shut up, but Yugi says Panik's whole strategy is nothing but hiding and cowering. Furious, Panik turns the fire jets up to maximum and blasts them at Yugi, but Yugi casually shifts out of their way and continues to taunt Panik, while Panik seethes.
Téa warns Yugi that Panik's dangerous, and he'd better stop stirring him up, but Mai tells her not to interfere, saying Yugi's just using Panik's own tactics against him. It's a psyche-out war. Joey nods to Tristan.
Panik threatens to burn Yugi to a cinder, but Yugi says that would prove Panik's a coward. If Panik's not afraid, he should stop hiding and play the game with honor, or Yugi will rip his pathetic fearsome facade away. Panik says Yugi's bluffing, but Yugi says there's only one way he'll know for sure—play out the game. They'll know in two turns. (Attack of the flying 2s!)
Does Panik have the courage? Panik rants that he'll crush Yugi and wipe out his life points.
Mai says Yugi really shook Panik up. Psychology is half the game. (Japanese Mai says he's safe for now. But the battle of life and death starts here.)
Yugi draws, then summons Gaia the Fierce Knight (2300 ATK). Panik is practically foaming at the mouth, calling Yugi an idiot, asking him if he thinks a monster that weak can break through his Chaos Shield. Yugi flips his remaining set magic card, telling Panik to read it and weep. It's Polymerization, which Yugi uses to fuse Gaia with Curse of Dragon to form Gaia the Dragon Champion (2600 ATK). Then he ends his turn, saying Panik is finished.
Panik can't figure out what Yugi's up to—the Castle of Dark Illusions is still much stronger, with a defense of 3200. (The monster stats are added to the shot in the US version.)
There must be more to Yugi's plan than that, or he wouldn't be so confident. He can't risk attacking, he thinks, but if he waits one more turn, the Swords of Revealing Light will wear off. Then he'll deactivate his Chaos Shield, and all his monsters will be free to attack Yugi at once. He draws, and plays Metal Guardian (2150 DEF) in defense mode. The field power bonus raises its defense to 2795 points. Any attack against his monsters is impossible!
Yugi tells Panik he's cowering again. His strategy is nothing but putting up defenses. Panik tells Yugi to shut up—next turn, the Swords of Revealing Light will be extinguished, and he'll hit Yugi with everything at once. Yugi says it will be too late—that was Panik's last turn. (And I bet you know what's coming next.)
Yugi summons Catapult Turtle (1000 ATK), saying slow and steady wins the duel. He can use it to launch Gaia the Dragon Champion and shatter Panik's defenses. Catapult Turtle raises Gaia's attack power to 3200. Twitching, Panik says his monsters' defense power is still too strong. Yugi can't touch them.
But Yugi's not attacking Panik's monsters. He's attacking the Castle of Dark Illusions. Mai gasps! And Panik calls Yugi a fool, saying his Castle is still invincible. Yugi says they'll see, and launches Gaia the Dragon Champion. The Dragon Champion is destroyed, and Yugi's life points go down to 300. Tristan says Yugi flushed a lot of points with that maneuver, and Joey says that Yugi sacrificed his Dragon Champion. Bakura says that's an awfully big loss, both in life points and monsters, and Joey adds that if the attack didn't work, next turn Panik will wipe out the rest of Yugi's life points. (According to the manga, Yugi sacrificed Gaia the Dragon Champion to Catapult Turtle's effect, at a cost of half of Gaia's original attack points. Which should bring him down to 306, but they're just using the points from the manga, where the duel has gone a little differently, and Yugi had 1600 life points before launching Gaia.)
Yugi stands confidently watching as the smoke clears. The Castle appears to be intact at first, but then the ring around it cracks and falls. The rest of it remains in the air, though, and Téa exclaims, oh no! it's still floating. Panik laughs, saying that for all Yugi's threats, his Castle is unharmed. Yugi's attack only knocked its flotation ring off. And now that Yugi's attack has failed, he'll eliminate him once and for all! (This shot of Yugi is added to the US version, and a bit of the previous scene is repeated. This scene, like the one above, is rearranged a little around the the commercial break in the US version.)
Still laughing, Panik says it's been five turns and he's still standing. His monsters are still contained and protected within the Chaos Shield. When this turn is over, Swords of Revealing Light's magic will vanish, and he'll attack with all four of his monsters.
But Yugi says there will be no next turn. This duel has already ended. Doesn't it seem strange that a Castle that's lost its flotation ring is still floating? The Swords of Revealing Light are all that's holding it up now, and once Yugi's turn is over, the Swords will disappear.
Giving Panik a thumbs down, Yugi ends his turn. The Swords disappear, and the Castle of Dark Illusions begins to fall. Panik cries out to his monsters to run out of the way, but Yugi says it's no use—the Chaos Shield is trapping them inside. The Castle slowly sinks, crushing Panik's monsters. Panik's life points drop to zero.
(Okay, here's how that would have worked in the real game. Catapult Turtle is a an effect monster which allows the player to offer one of his monsters as tribute in order to inflict damage on the opponent equal to half the tribute monster's attack power. Gaia the Dragon Champion had an attack of 2300, so the attack would have done 1150 points of damage to Panik, wiping out his remaining life points. Yugi wouldn't have lost any life points at all. If Catapult Turtle had raised Gaia the Dragon Champion's attack to 3200, and Gaia attacked the Castle, which had a defense strength of 3200, the attack should have ended in a stalemate—no monsters destroyed, no life points lost. And all that nonsense about the flotation ring being destroyed and the Castle crushing Panik's monsters was, well, nonsense. You can't destroy part of a monster, which is what happened when the Castle's "flotation ring" fell off.)
A sore loser, Panik says he may not have beaten Yugi, but he can still eliminate him. He smashes his fist into the controls for the flame jets, activating them all, and engulfing the whole dueling platform in fire. Yugi's still trapped by the shackles and can't escape. Panik sends one final blast of flame right down the middle of the field at Yugi. It looks like Yugi's toast! But his Millennium Puzzle activates, shielding him from the flames. As a cyclone of flame surrounds the dueling arena, Panik faces Yugi inside it, astonished that Yugi survived. Yugi Mind Crushes Panik, sending him to oblivion. ("I'll show you the real power of darkness," he tells Player Killer in the Japanese.)
The flames dissipate, and Yugi's dueling station lowers him to the ground, where the gang greet him with cheers and relief. Tristan says Yugi's Millennium Puzzle has more power than they thought, and Joey adds that not only did it save Yugi from the fire, it saved all of them, too. (Japanese Honda asks what that light was, and Jounouchi says he thinks the fire caused a glitch in the 3D virtual system.)
Yugi walks up to Mai and offers her her eight Star Chips back, but she refuses, telling him she fights her own battles. Téa says that Yugi battled for her, and risked his life for her. Mai says she knows, but.... Joey says there's no point in arguing. He grabs the Star Chips from Yugi's hand, saying if Mai would rather be booted off the island, he'll take them. Mai gets steamed, and tries to grab them away from him—and he cheerfully lets her have them. He tells her, didn't she learn anything from this duel? She can't always keep your defenses up, because they'll just get between her and the people who are trying to be her friends. (Japanese Jounouchi tells Mai that if her pride won't let her keep the Star Chips, just throw them in the sea. It's her choice. But in her place, he wouldn't do it. He wouldn't lose the Star Chips and his dreams.) Yugi nods, and Mai gives it some thought.
Then Joey laughs, saying he's such a sensitive guy! As they walk away, Tristan says, yeah, when he's not being a pain. And Téa adds, which is most of the time. (Japanese Jounouchi says, it's time for sleep. Honda teases him for his soft words to Mai, and Jounouchi tells him to shut up. Bakura says, "Maa, maa," which means something like, "Now, now" in this situation.)
Mai calls out to Yugi to wait. He turns, and she says she'll pay him back for what he did today. As far as she's concerned, these Star Chips are still his, so she owes him. And when they finally do face each other in a duel, it will be an honorable one.