Duel is an anime episode of Afro Samurai that was released on 01/25/2007

Ninja Ninja kicks off the episode by mocking the unmoving body of Brother #1 from the Empty Seven Clan, as Afro Samurai stands across from Kuma, a samurai with a teddy bear head. Ninja tries to dissuade Afro from attacking a teddy bear with a kimono and swords, saying "that shit ain't natural." Afro responds by blowing smoke in his face, and ignoring his protestations.

Kuma draws out two swords and assumes a battle stance as Ninja continues to warn Afro, but Afro keeps his own sword sheathed. Kuma wonders why he hasn't drawn his sword, saying that if Afro wants to fight the Number One then he will have to fight him. He strikes with both swords, but Afro dodges his attacks and tries to run around him. Kuma simply chases him down before he can get far, audibly sobbing as he attacks.

Kuma starts insulting Afro, and continues attacking him in the wreckage of an old ship, but Afro still won't draw his sword. A streak of blood colors Afro's face as Kuma leaps up into the air for a final strike.

Suddenly, a flashback pops up where the swordmaster is explaining to a young Afro, Jinno, and the other students that there is no one correct style of fighting. Later, while eating fish, Jinno talks about his preference for using a two-sword style, and how he wants to one day teach at the dojo. Afro excuses himself to go outside and picks up his father's sword.

Sometime after that, young Afro encounters a group of thugs who are also looking for the Number Two headband. Neither side admits to knowing where it is, so they attack. Jinno jumps in with a pair of wooden swords and helps Afro fight. After defeating all of them, the last thug tells Afro that the Number Two "is quite near." After the fight, Afro drinks a bowl full of lemonade, while Jinno begs Afro to forget about revenge, and to go on with a new life with him and Otsuru. The two of them head back home and watch the fireworks.

The next day, Afro hears a shopkeeper mention that "a sword master" owns the Number Two headband. Jinno sees the swordmaster wandering around outside that night, and wonders if everything is alright. The master responds that he killed a man in self-defense during the night of the festival with the fireworks.

Soon after that, Afro and Jinno graduate from the dojo, and Afro asks the masteroutright if he is the current Number Two. The sword master gives him a meeting spot for that night. At midnight, the master wears the Number Two headband, and tells Afro to choose whether to kill him, or to let go. But if he wins, Afro will know "no friend, no joy, no love" from the influence of the headbands.

Before Afro makes his choice, the two are interrupted by the other students who want to know what's going on, and then by several thugs who have come to fight for the headband as well. The swordmaster walks past Afro and attacks the thugs, telling Jinno to take everyone and run. The swordmaster puts up a fight, but he becomes wounded during the fight, coaxing Jinno and the other students to fight alongside him. Even so, the students are killed one by one, and Otsuru is seen lying in a pool of blood. Afro rushes in to rescue them, but it's too late.

Afro makes his decision, kills his wounded master, and takes the Number Two headband. Jinno begs for an explanation, as he balances on his own sword and asks why he chose revenge over the master. Afro responds he did it "for my...true father." Jinno can't believe it, then swears he will never forgive Afro before falling off a nearby cliff.

Back in the present, Afro appears to have dodged Kuma's last strike, while some other voice is commanding Kuma to finish Afro off quickly. Kuma responds that he doesn't care about the headband, but he wants Afro to suffer. Kuma's teddy-bear head opens and falls off to reveal a cybernetically-enhanced Jinnosuke underneath. He claims that his tears "have never stopped falling since that day." Afro mutters a word of recognition before Jinno angrily charges at him with one of his swords.

Characters & Voice Actors

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Otsuru ( x ) ( x ) ( x )
Tara Strong ( x ) ( x ) ( x ) (English)
Jinnosuke ( x ) ( x ) ( x )
Yuri Lowenthal ( x ) ( x ) ( x ) (English)
Ninja Ninja ( x ) ( x ) ( x )
Samuel L. Jackson ( x ) ( x ) ( x ) (English)
Afro Samurai ( x ) ( x ) ( x )
Samuel L. Jackson ( x ) ( x ) ( x ) (English)


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