The Best Episodes Directed by Hiromichi Matano

Body and Soul

#1 - Body and Soul

Golden Time (2013) Season 1 - Episode 5

After finding the photo of him and Linda, Banri runs to the bridge where the accident that caused his amnesia occurred to remember more, but cannot. Unbeknownst to him, the spirit of the eighteen year old Banri Tada watches him, and explains that the fall caused his eighteen year old spirit, and all his memories, to leave his body, and that he cannot be seen or heard by the current Banri. After returning to school, Banri meets with Kōko, who gives him a mirror that matches hers to commemorate their friendship. The next day, Banri and Mitsuo run into Kōko, who begins to act overly cheerful and dramatic about her friendship with Banri. Linda, who was helping Kōko register for classes, soon joins them and meets Mitsuo, while later inquiring about Kōko and Banri's joining the Festival Club. Kōko answers that both of them will join, while Banri wonders why Linda has not mentioned that she knows him from before. At their first dance rehearsal, Kōko demonstrates she cannot dance, which causes her to be depressed and cry. After calming down, she apologizes to Banri for her behavior, and confesses that she is still recovering from being dumped by Mitsuo, but he reassures her it is fine, and reaffirms their friendship by using the mirror she gave him. That night, Banri recalls the memory from when he escaped the hospital; he had seen a flashing light from his window, and when he snuck out to see what it was, he discovered it was Linda, and as the two talk, it is revealed that she was the one who inspired Banri to come to Tokyo. Banri wonders why Linda has not mentioned any of this to him, and the spirit of Banri laments that he cannot tell the current Banri how important Linda was to him.

star 10.00
60 votes
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Trouble Party

#2 - Trouble Party

Golden Time (2013) Season 1 - Episode 11

Banri discusses going as a couple to the beach over summer break with the upperclassmen of the festival club and is told he needs money first. When he tells Koko he wants to work, she rejects his idea, saying they would have less time together. However, behind Koko's back, Banri and Yanagisawa accept a job from Nana-senpai, and...?

star 10.00
60 votes
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Black Bellweather

#3 - Black Bellweather

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 1 - Episode 43

Kamui is concerned when Aichi stops coming to Card Capital after the tournament. Aichi continues to be haunted by Kai's words and finds himself unexpectedly at the door to the PSY Card Shop. Aichi enters the shop and is greeted by the members of Ultra Rare where he asks them if he was strong in the last tournament. Everyone is then surprised when Ren enters the shop. Confronting Aichi, Ren explains what has been happening to him lately and the nature of the power, PSY Qualia. Ren tells Aichi that Kai will only acknowledge strong fighters and that he must get stronger. Ren then gives Aichi a Shadow Paladin Deck, the dark opposite of his Royal Paladin Deck. Seeing through PSY Qualia, Aichi is nearly overwhelmed by the deck's power and believes this new deck makes him invincible. Kourin believes he's being arrogant and challenges him to a duel with her Royal Paladin Deck. In the match, Kourin is easily and soundly defeated by Aichi using Blaster Dark and his new Shadow Paladins, demonstrating the fearsome power of PSY Qualia. All the while, Ren watches from the shadows, smiling and encouraging Aichi to embrace his new dark power.

star 9.76
33 votes
Fateful Showdown

#4 - Fateful Showdown

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 1 - Episode 57

Although happy that Aichi woke up, Kai thought of the time when he was still young. He wanted to get Ren out of his Pysqualia self, but then Ren's image was so bad that Kai left him defeated. Now that Kai changed, he vowed to rescue Ren from his PSY Qualia addiction and is bent on winning!

star 9.76
33 votes
Two Powers, Side by Side

#5 - Two Powers, Side by Side

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 1 - Episode 63

The final battle between Ren and Aichi begins, with Ren initially using his PSYQualia to overpower Aichi.

star 9.75
32 votes
Light and Nothingness

#6 - Light and Nothingness

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 2 - Episode 38

The final battle between Aichi and Leon begins, with the latter predicting via Psyqualia that he will win when his Glory Maelstrom attacks Aichi's Blond Ezel. Signs show of the nothingness that is Void slowly destroying the dimension and creeping its way to Aichi. The darkness eventually affects Aichi as he falls unconscious and loses the will to fight. However, he remembers his loved ones and then hears a familiar voice, both of which help Aichi to stand up and continue the battle. He activates the Limit Break of Blond Ezel to superior call an astral form of his original avatar card: Blaster Blade Spirit. But even with that, Leon withstands Aichi's attacks and then crossrides Glory Maelstrom...

star 9.75
32 votes
Feverish Seoul Stage

#7 - Feverish Seoul Stage

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 2 - Episode 14

The Seoul Stage of the VF Circuit begins with Team Q4 coming across Team Movie Stars, the local favorite favored to win the Seoul Stage. The teams head into the cardfight area where they learn special rules will be applied in this stage. Team Q4 faces off with Team Seven Seas, who are all pirates who use Granblue decks like Team Handsome. Aichi's special rule is to have a drive check for rear-guards, Misaki's rule is all turns must be completed within 30 seconds, and Kamui's rule is you can't see what you attack. Aichi trails 4 damage to 2 when he summons Incandescent Lion, Blond Ezel and places 2 grade 3 units in the rear-guard zone. This means he gets a minimum of 6 drive checks. His opponent guards twice, but thanks to 2 stand triggers, Aichi manages to pile up the damage and wins 6-4. Misaki memorizes her opponent's hand and makes it where he can't guard with a timely bind allowing her to win 6-2. Kamui keeps missing his opponent, but through the process of elimination, he destroys all the rear-guards and eventually gets to his opponent's vanguard. Kamui manages to stand three of his rear-guards to win 6-2. They go to watch Team Movie Stars match only to find out it has finished. Team Movie Stars has been defeated by Team New AL4 consisting of Ren, Asaka, and Kai. The second round is set with Team New AL4 battling Team Q4.

star 9.72
32 votes
Burn! Hong Kong Stage

#8 - Burn! Hong Kong Stage

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 2 - Episode 22

Team Q4 and friends head to the Hong Kong Stage of the VF Circuit, hoping to advance to meet with Takuto. While in front of the stadium, before the fights start, they have a short run-in with three males, one big, one normal-sized, and one small. Shin vaguely remembers seeing them before, and it is then that two identical girls appear. They tell him off by saying how that group is actually a powerful team before taking their leave. The Hong Kong Stage officially begins. The unique attribute of this stage is that each cardfight will be 2-on-2 tag-battle style; the first team to deal 9 points of damage instead of the usual 6 to the opposing team is the victor. However, Kamui cannot comprehend the numerous difficult rules, leaving Aichi and Misaki to pair up and take on Team Lao (the group of three men who they met earlier) in the first round. Throughout the fight, the special rules are exhibited and explained: the fighters must only attack the player standing in front of them, they are forbidden to consult their partners and show the cards in their hands to one another, but they are allowed to call guardians from their hands to block for their partners and share damage for Counterblast uses. Team Lao's Terence and Felix both use Tachikaze decks; Terence's Raptor units deliver major damage to Aichi early on in the fight. Using her new Witch deck, Misaki compensates for Aichi by riding Scarlet Witch, CoCo and using various skills to draw more cards, empty her vanguard's soul, and subsequently gain benefits from it. On the sidelines, Shin finally recalls that the members of Team Lao are actually three brothers who therefore have great teamwork with each other. Can Aichi and Misaki overcome the Lao brothers' team synergy and win?

star 9.72
32 votes
Assemble! Japan Stage

#9 - Assemble! Japan Stage

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 2 - Episode 30

It's time for the last leg of the VF Circuit, the Japan Stage. Taking place in an amusement park, many familiar teams have gathered. The aspect for this stage is that each team member will individually fight others in three separate stadiums. Each victory that a cardfighter gets will earn his/her team 1 point; the team with the most points by the end is the winner of the entire Japan Stage and will go on to face the previous stages' winners at the Final Stage. What's more is that "special reserve" cardfighters like Team Unknown (composed of the masked trio of King Z, Queen Y, and Joker X) will participate and act as obstacles for all of the teams. With the rules fully explained, Aichi and Q4 resolve themselves to win the Japan Stage. And so, the fights begin. Misaki and Kamui win their respective matches. On the other hand, Aichi is in a close fight in a rematch with Team Jurassic Army's Gunji Ryudo. Against the threatening Limit Break of Ryudo's new ace card, Destruction Dragon, Dark Rex, Aichi successfully defends himself, using a lot of his cards in the process. Despite the odds, Aichi stays determined and utilizes the Limit Break of his Blond Ezel twice, superior calling more units from his deck and gaining power from them, which forces Ryudo to not guard against Ezel's attack. As a result, Aichi is victorious. After saluting him on his win, Ryudo warns Aichi of what's to come in the Japan Stage. Behind the scenes, Joker X is confronted by Kyou and Team Avengers, who plot to take Team Unknown's masks and assume their roles. However, Kyou is defeated by Joker X, who reveals his true identity to Kyou and shocks him. Soon after, Kamui awaits his next opponent, who turns out to be none other than Nagisa, clad in a bridal gown and eager to marry him right now.

star 9.72
32 votes
The Curtain Rises! The VF Circuit!!

#10 - The Curtain Rises! The VF Circuit!!

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 2 - Episode 5

Q4 arrives in Singapore. While sight-seeing, they run into their friendly rivals, Team Caesar. Kenji and his friends take them to a local university, SIT (Singapore Institute of Technical Studies), where students learn about specific studies in Vanguard and where Kenji hopes to attend when he graduates from high school. They then meet three young boys, Christopher Lo, Ali Pajeel, and Lee Shenlon, who are students of the university despite being the same age as Kamui. The SIT boys get into a heated discussion about how they got an early start in attending SIT and how there's little to no hope for those who attend later than they have. After leaving the university, Aichi sees Takuto and follows him trying to get an answer. Kourin arrives and lets him know the only way to meet with Takuto is to win the VF Circuit. Before leaving, Kourin gives Aichi a card, Incandescent Lion, Blond Ezel. He returns to the hotel and reorganizes his deck with his friends and with cards that Shin purchased in Singapore. The next day, the VF Circuit begins. Q4 learns that Chris, Ali, and Lee are the members of a rival team, SIT Genius, in the VF Circuit, and the worldwide broadcast of the Circuit begins.

star 9.69
32 votes
At the End of the Battle

#11 - At the End of the Battle

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 1 - Episode 50

Kai rides King of Knights, Alfred to give Aichi some damage. However, on the next turn, Aichi declares "Final Turn", attacking with Phantom Blaster Dragon and Blaster Dark attacks but Kai successfully guards against both of them. Failing his Final Turn, Aichi is shocked and forced to end his turn, giving Kai the chance to show Aichi what true strength is. Kai declares "Final Turn" as he rides Alfred Early, a more powerful form of King of Knights, Alfred. Through Alfred Early's skill, Blaster Blade is Superior Called from the soul. Blaster Blade makes Aichi realize that relying on PSY Qualia isn't real power and how Aichi always wanted to have a Cardfight with Kai. The fight is called off, and Kai gives back Aichi's Royal Paladin deck.

star 9.58
33 votes
Don't Tease Me!!

#12 - Don't Tease Me!!

Ah! My Buddha Season 1 - Episode 11

The Christmas special. Ikkou tries to exorcise a spider-spirit without awakening but fails. Later the gang is assigned by Jotoku to exorcise Santa Claus on Christmas due to a train accident 45 years ago. Sakura's recantation of the sūtra does not exorcise Santa and is forced to allow Ikkou to awaken. The gang eat cake afterwards.

star 9.00
84 votes
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Don't Haniwa Me!!

#13 - Don't Haniwa Me!!

Ah! My Buddha Season 2 - Episode 4

Hinata, Ikkou, Chitose, Sakura and Kazuki go on a haniwa excavation together. Kazuki shamelessly seduces Ikkou but is constantly thwarted by her fanboys. In a rage, Kazuki accidentally releases an evil spirit, a giant haniwa. Hinata is forced to make her little demon into a monster to destroy the spirit.

star 9.00
84 votes
Don't Cry!!

#14 - Don't Cry!!

Ah! My Buddha Season 2 - Episode 9

A baby is left abandoned at Saienji's gate. The gang plus Kazuki attempt to pacify the baby in Jotoku's absence. Kazuki uses the pretext of calming the baby to seduce Ikkou. Haruka, who has a natural talent for calming the baby, is reminded of Miyako looking after her in the past.

star 8.50
112 votes
The Stranger

#15 - The Stranger

Parasyte -the maxim- Season 1 - Episode 5

Running late to school, Shinichi sees Nagai in trouble with some punks. When Shinichi steps in to help, he meets a high school student, Kimishima Kana. Shinichi and Satomi share a close moment when she tends to his injuries, but his life is about to take a sudden turn with a single phone call from his father...

star 8.34
331 votes
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Life and Oath

#16 - Life and Oath

Parasyte -the maxim- Season 1 - Episode 23

With no chance to survive, Shinichi pulls off a desperate move.

star 8.10
230 votes
Let's Go Together

#17 - Let's Go Together

Killing Bites Season 1 - Episode 10

Hitomi is knocked unconscious. Taiga tries to break Kido’s scales but is tricked and loses his right arm. Taiga is saved by Ichinosuke, whose attack leaves Kido vulnerable long enough for Taiga to claw out his right eye. Despite this, both Taiga and Ichinosuke are impaled by Kido. Yoko happily declares her victory for the Mitsukado. However, Hitomi suddenly and explosively awakens and transforms further into her monstrous honey badger form. Shidoh reveals that while most hybrids are genetically modified humans, Hitomi was born with Hybrid DNA, making her an Origin Beast, a perfect fusion of human and animal. A flashback to seven years ago reveals Shidoh first encountered Hitomi living like a wild animal in Hong Kong. By feeding and spending time with her he gained her trust and named her Hitomi, despite numerous injuries to himself. Shidoh’s co-worker, Shibayama, ended up shooting her with a tranquilizer, causing her to collapse in an area controlled by the Liuman Mafia. They are eventually saved from the Mafia by match overseer Shinozaki and Hitomi begins to develop feelings for Shidoh for protecting her. Back in the present Hitomi attacks Kido with vastly superior strength and speed than her previous attacks.

star 7.81
32 votes
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Everyone's Night

#18 - Everyone's Night

Haikyu!! Season 4 - Episode 9

On the first day of the New Year, Daichi is disturbed by a foreboding dream that burdens him as the time to head to the Spring Tournament draws near. The Karasuno team finally departs to Tokyo for the nationals tournament where nerves and excitement begin to arise as the players prepare for their first games and reunite with old friends.

star 7.81
93 votes
The Adventure of the Dying Detective

#19 - The Adventure of the Dying Detective

Parasyte -the maxim- Season 1 - Episode 17

Having determined Tamura to be a threat, Kusano's group moves to eliminate her. Meanwhile, Kuramori moves to avenge his family's death by abducting Tamura's baby. With her baby in his arms, Kuramori faces Tamura and threatens to throw the infant down a steep slope--what will Tamura do?

star 7.73
220 votes
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The Blue Bird

#20 - The Blue Bird

Parasyte -the maxim- Season 1 - Episode 11

Kana's feelings for Shinichi grows day by day, and so does Shinichi's apprehension about Kana's ability. As ordinary life returns, Satomi struggles with her mounting suspicion that something has changed in Shinichi. Meanwhile, a new parasite appears to wreak havoc in a local gang hideout. Everyone's lives are about to get shattered yet again.

star 7.60
249 votes
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You Have No Feel For The Game

#21 - You Have No Feel For The Game

All Out!! Season 1 - Episode 11

Gion and Kamo have arrived at Ryoin Academy to spy on the team. Among the Ryoin team that overwhelmed its opponent, twin flankers Kirishima Sekito and Kokuto stood out from the rest!! Along with their 92 centimeter 98 kilogram ace Zanba Ryujin, the two feel firsthand just how amazing Ryoin Academy is. Gion's path has become clear to him, while Kamo is overwhelmed by the amazing prowess of Ryoin. On their way home, they stop by a sporting goods store where they run into Sekito and Kokuto...

star 7.52
29 votes
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What's Lacking

#22 - What's Lacking

All Out!! Season 1 - Episode 5

The Jinko rugby club's training camp has begun. As the team engages in intense practice, a lone man appears and tells them they're wasting their time. The harsh words of former national team coach Komori Shingo leave the team at a loss. Meanwhile, Sekizan asks him what the team is lacking. Will Komori become the savior of the leaderless Jinko rugby team?

star 7.50
26 votes
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It's a Birthday Party, Dajo / Iyami's Great Discovery

#23 - It's a Birthday Party, Dajo / Iyami's Great Discovery

Mr. Osomatsu Season 1 - Episode 6

The Matsunos are invited to Hatabou's birthday party, becoming surprised to discover he is living the rich life.

star 7.38
16 votes
Abduction

#24 - Abduction

Young Black Jack Season 1 - Episode 2

Abruptly abducted in the dead of night, a loan shark offers Hazama and other captives the option of wiping their debt clean, at a cost--they must offer their heart to a certain man of means. However, the black market doctor goes AWOL and the heart transplant is no go…

star 7.35
17 votes
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The Gruesome Chronicle Part 3

#25 - The Gruesome Chronicle Part 3

Young Black Jack Season 1 - Episode 11

Hyakki's has changed his appearance, which shocks Hazama. He attempts to persuade Hyakki to turn himself in, but Hyakki refuses to forego his pursuit of vengeance...

star 7.29
7 votes
Non-Player Killer

#26 - Non-Player Killer

I'm Standing on a Million Lives Season 1 - Episode 8

After escaping the cave, the party splits into two teams, with one pursuing the Deokk soldiers and the other searching for ways to complete their quest. The team of Yotsuya, Tokitate, and Kahvel catches up to Kamilto and his men, but if they jump straight into battle, it could cause a war to break out between Deokk and Kahvel's homeland of Cortonel. So Yotsuya comes up with a plan...

star 7.26
47 votes
VS Imaginator 2

#27 - VS Imaginator 2

Boogiepop and Others Season 1 - Episode 5

In order to go to high school in Japan, Kirima Nagi's half brother, Taniguchi Masaki, returns to Japan. Masaki gets advice from his sister to not stand out as much at school, but ends up gathering some grudges from some of the kids at school. He gets surrounded by some students and a girl calls out to them. Orihata Aya seems to be offering herself up in Masaki's place. Because of this encounter, the two of them start to get closer, but...

star 7.02
41 votes
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Battle Royale

#28 - Battle Royale

Atom: The Beginning Season 1 - Episode 10

With Six back and ready, he's not the only one joining the fight. Dr. Lolo and her robot Mars are joining the battle too. She calms that her robot will fight everyone. Meanwhile, Six starts to think about the people around it and comes to a decision. Soon, the Deadly Taurus, Drum Shoulder, Hell Scissors, Six, and Mars begin their battle. However, as the battle goes on Mars beats off the other robots with relative ease. He cuts through them like butter until it's down to just him and Six. As they both prepare for the battle that's coming, it becomes clear that Six is not just a robot. For he asks why Mars fights and wants to talk with him.

star 7.00
8 votes
The Return of the Ninja Master

#29 - The Return of the Ninja Master

Cardfight!! Vanguard Season 1 - Episode 37

A tournament is being held again at Card Capital, but it is now a team fight due to the large number of participants. Team Q4 fights and moves all the way up to the final round, with Kai not participating in the team fight. Q4 discovers their opponent to be Team Overthrow which consists of Miwa, Yūta, and Katsumi, who is dressed up as Ninja Master M, since the costume was donated to him by M, since he decided to not participate in tournaments anymore. In the first round, Katsumi faces Misaki and completely loses due to his deck being full of grade 3s. The second round features Kamui and Degozaru's secret weapon, Princess Maiden, who is actually Emi, who wanted to participate in the tournament. Because of Kamui being unwilling to give his all against Emi, she defeats him using her Bermuda Triangle/Oracle Think Tank deck. Now it is Aichi's turn, and his opponent is none other than Miwa!

star 7.00
3 votes
The Chaos Witch and the Successor of the Razor's Edge

#30 - The Chaos Witch and the Successor of the Razor's Edge

Sorcerous Stabber Orphen (2020) Season 1 - Episode 4

Orphen remembers more of his past at the Tower of Fangs and a time when he and Azalie ventured back to the orphanage where they grew up. Back in present time, Orphen finds a couple of stowaways...

star 6.78
27 votes
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Ran and Princess Teru

#31 - Ran and Princess Teru

Atom: The Beginning Season 1 - Episode 7

Ran and her friends at robotics club at Tokyo Perfectural Sanpoji high school add finishing touches to their robot Teru Hime (Princess Teru) as their entry for JRRC Junior robot rescue competition which tests disaster management robots where the robots have to cross a damage inflicted sites obstacles find the dummy, report its location and cross the finish line in minimal time. While Ummataro and Hiroshi remain unmoved and disenchanted by the invitation to robot wrestling competition Hiroshi calls its banal and uncivilized while Ummataro believes that six is already the strongest and needs no proving while Motoko is thrilled. Hiroshi and Motoko visit the robotics club to check on Ran there Ran's club members seek out Hiroshi's advice on to deal with Ran as she is extremely smart and innovative but remains adamant on her ways to which Hiroshi advises them to take action to something which the firmly believe is right. While returning Hiroshi get a mail from Moriya asking him to reconsider his offer, at the competition almost all the robots get stalled at some level only one manages it but due to robots crashing the infrastructure hosting the competition stats losing its integrity, one robot manages to clear the course during Teru Hime's she clear most of course flawlessly but due her humanoid forms flexibility and poor quality materials used to make it her joints lock up seeing this the rest of the club members pull out a hidden ace and transform their robot but the building starts to collapse sensing this Six takes the necessary action rescuing the robot the girls despite winning forfeit the award. Dr. Lolo shows up to Ummataro and Hiroshi asking whether the got their invitation to Robo wrestling finally revealing the mummified humanoid to be her robot MARS.

star 6.50
12 votes
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Tosei's Abilities

#32 - Tosei's Abilities

Big Windup! Season 1 - Episode 19

(Nishiura-2 vs. Tosei-2[Motoyama & Shimazaki]: bottom of the 5th – bottom of the 6th inning) Tosei continue their attack plan, concentrating on hitting Mihashi’s curveball, and manage to get in one run. Nishiura gets into a little mishap, because Mihashi gets a nose bleed, making Abe worry about Mihashi’s condition and whether or not he can pitch. However, it was lucky that this didn’t happen until after the 5th inning, so Mihashi was able to rest for a bit while the field underwent maintenance. The 6th inning doesn’t progress much better for Nishiura, as Tosei ties the score.

star 6.00
4 votes
Return to Yesterday

#33 - Return to Yesterday

Golden Time (2013) Season 1 - Episode 17

In a building near the riverbed where the summer festival will be held, Banri arrives early to help prepare for a festival club party.

star 0.00
0 votes