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The Pandora Box (パンドラボックス Pandora Bokkusu) alternatively spelt Pandora's Box, is an extraterrestrial artifact which was used by Evolto and Blood Tribe to destroy numerous planets across the universe. According to Vernage, it originated from the Blood Tribe's homeworld. Following its use to destroy the civilization on Mars, it was discovered by the human astronaut Soichi Isurugi and became the origin of the Sky Wall Disaster when he returned to Earth.
Description and Function
The Pandora Box is comprised of the box itself and six Pandora Panels (パンドラパネル Pandora Paneru), which encase the inner box and were ejected when Evolto attempted to open it after first arriving on Earth, leading to the Sky Wall Disaster. Each panel has ten slots to insert Fullbottles; Fullbottles that have a Best Match being placed directly across from each other, resulting in five Best Matches per panel. Each nation of Japan is represented by two panels of a specific color, with Touto being teal, Hokuto being blue, and Seito being red.
When a panel with all slots occupied by Fullbottles is placed on the inner box, a section of the Pandora Tower is constructed. When all six completed panels are united in this way, the Pandora Tower is completed and the inner box opens to reveal the Evol Trigger.
Later in the series, Sento Kiryu uses one of the teal Touto panels to create the Genius Fullbottle. Shortly afterwards, Evolto places the Evol Trigger in the five remaining panels with all 60 fullbottles, resulting in the creation of the black Last Pandora Panel (ラストパンドラパネル Rasuto Pandora Paneru) in place of the missing Touto panel. Unlike the other panels, the Last Pandora Panel holds Lost Fullbottles and has the power to defy the laws of physics. When a Lost Fullbottle is taken from a defeated Smash and inserted into the Last Pandora Panel, it turns black and gold. When Evolto inserts ten of these black Lost Fullbottles into the panels and absorbs it, he is able to assume his Monster Form, granting him warp travel.
When the Hazard Trigger is placed in the five normal panels, a white Last Pandora Panel is created in the same manner as the black version. When both the white and black Last Pandora Panels are united along with the Lost Fullbottles, using the essence of the Genius Fullbottle for the process, two parallel universe versions of the Earth are brought into the same space and a new one is able to be created. During this event, a distortion in space-time is created between the two planets. In order for the process to be successful, Evolto must be present in this space upon its completion. If this does not happen, both versions of the Earth are destroyed. If successful, the two parallel Earths are fused, creating a third that is entirely unique. In this new world, objects and people that only exist in one of the parallel Earths are erased, while those with parallel counterparts will seamlessly fuse together. The only exceptions to these rules are Sento and Ryuga, who survive the merger with their memories intact.
Pandora Box was a powerful weapon used by the Blood Tribe to annihilate countless civilizations and their native planets. When the Blood Tribe targeted the planet Mars, they were successful in utilizing the box's might to its full potential by raising Pandora's Tower that completely wiped out most if not the entire Martian civilization. The queen at the time, Vernage was vainly successful in stopping their streak of destruction by separating their souls from their bodies. However due to the innate biology of the Blood Tribe, they were able to save themselves by storing their souls inside the Pandora Box, which was kept on the Planet Mars for an unspecified amount of time.
Discovery and Activation
Soichi Isurugi, an astronaut who was a crew member of the Kiwami Project, an expedition team sent out by INSET on the exploration vessel Prominence, had discovered the Box during a survey of the Martian terrain. Upon being touched, it reacted to the human by shedding its stone encasing to reveal its true form, but at the same time, Evolto was released from the box and possessed Soichi. During the journey back to Earth on the Prominence with the box on board, the rest of the souls possessed the remaining members of the Kiwami Project, Kengo Ino, Mitsuomi Gobara, and Ryoka Saiga. Initial research had claimed that the Pandora Box was technology from part of an advanced civilization on Mars, which was later proven to be false.
Later, Evolto had forced Shinobu Katsuragi to create 60 Fullbottles, which would be outfitted on the interior of the box's panels to allow Evolto to easily execute the box's full might and raise Pandora's Tower during the celebratoral return ceremony later on. Unfortunately for him, the box was not the only foreign object that was brought back from Mars, but also a golden bangle belonging to Queen Vernage herself, as she explained. She revealed that because she spent the last bit of her power separating the Blood Tribe members' souls from their bodies, it inevitably destroyed her own body as well, and her soul was trapped inside a golden bangle, which is also set to be displayed at the ceremony alongside the Pandora Box. As Misora Isurugi stumbled upon the items looking for her father Soichi, the astronaut who found the Box, Vernage latched herself onto Misora and used her body to remove the essences of the Fullbottles from Pandora Box, subsequently hindering Evolto's plans, who during the ceremony, dashed forward and tried to activate the box in an attempt to raise Pandora's Tower. However, due to Vernage tampering with the box beforehand, the tower did not rise, and a bright flash of light emanated from the box, generating the Sky Wall instead, which divided Japan into three sections. On the day known as the Sky Wall Disaster, the box generated a huge amount of raw Nebula Gas that exposed the audience to the unshielded effects of the gas, turning them increasingly aggressive in their later developments. As a result, the country itself was torn apart into three districts, each with their own capital and government pursuing different aims: Hokuto, focusing on social welfare; Seito, focusing on economic recovery; and Touto, focusing on traditional pacifism. The Pandora Box was later kept in a vault in the Touto Institute of Advanced Matter Physics, where it was studied so as to find a possible way to resolve the Sky Wall crisis.
The Rider System
- Main article: Project Build
As Shinobu Katsuragi continued to research the Box, he discovered that he could manipulate it into providing a useful source of power to fight against the box's main creators, the Blood Tribe. By harnessing the Nebula Gas that it emits, Shinobu had created the Build Driver that would allow the user to utilize the Fullbottles of the Pandora Box to create a battle suit capable of extreme combat. However Shinobu was forced to leave Touto and left the remainder of the research to his son, Takumi Katsuragi, who would continue developing it under the direction of Faust and (unknowingly) the Blood Tribe themselves for the sake of their plan to ignite the Japanese Civil War.
Faust later recruited Misora Isurugi to have her restore the essences of the Fullbottles, due to her being in possession of Vernage's bangle, which Vernage herself had removed the essences of the Fullbottles during the return ceremony. After Misora backed out of the project, her father Soichi had "rescued" her, along with retrieving one of the panels of the Box, a completed Build Driver, and several Fullbottles, and escaped to Touto to his cafe, Nascita. Takumi Katsuragi would later become Sento Kiryu due to Evolto and be indoctrinated into a "hero of justice", which he would unknowingly contribute to the war by having Misora purify more Fullbottles and utilizing the Pandora panel on their wall, which Sento had initially believed it to be a special compartment to test Best Matches and nothing more.
Sento investigated footage of the Sky Wall Disaster and discovered the existence of the multiple layers of panels that are interlocked to form the Pandora Box. Gentoku Himuro revealed that two of the panels were stolen three years ago, and suspected that either Seito or Hokuto were in involved in the theft. He had also suspected Soichi Isurugi, the astronaut who had dashed forward and activated the box itself, thus causing the disaster in the first place.
Later, one of the two stolen panels was revealed to be in the possession of Faust, recognized by one of their captives Masahiro Nabeshima who noticed that it was regularly used to test Best Match combinations of the Fullbottles. When Sento brought him to his lab at Nascita, Nabeshima had also noticed that Sento had a similar compartment on his wall. Sento decided to break apart that section, which was revealed to be the second of the two stolen panels. As Soichi returned from his work as Blood Stalk, Sento confronted him about the panel. Soichi revealed that he was the one who started the Sky Wall Disaster, but lied about why he did it and kept his identity as Evolto in the dark from him.
Transference between parties
Seeing it as an opportunity to incite a war so as to push for Touto's use of the Kamen Rider system for military purposes, Gentoku Himuro/Night Rogue began an operation for Faust to infiltrate the Institute to steal the Pandora Box. Though the operation was slightly deviated due to Blood Stalk's intervention, Night Rogue eventually reclaimed the Pandora Box and kept it in a hidden location, unknown to even Blood Stalk himself.
The location turned out to be in a secret basement of one of Namba Heavy Industries' laboratories. Blood Stalk managed to regain possession of the Pandora Box, much to Night Rogue's anger. Blood Stalk, having become Namba's new working partner, kept the Pandora Box in a storage facility belonging to Nanba Heavy Industries. Build managed to overpower Blood Stalk and claim the Pandora Box using his newly attained OctopusLight form, bringing the Box back to nascita, though the Box would end up back in Nanba's possession yet again due to it, along with the Fullbottles, being taken by Soichi, who turned out to be the true identity of Blood Stalk.
It turned out that Soichi had made use of Sento's transformations into Build as well as Misora's power of purifying Fullbottles so as to fulfill his plan of obtaining 10 pairs of Best Matched Fullbottles so as to open up the Pandora Box. Juzaburo Namba, CEO of Namba Heavy Industries, planned to harness the energy source within the Pandora Box to create a weapon more powerful than nuclear arms. However, upon finding out that most of the Fullbottles stolen were nothing more than just fake replicas created by Sento, Soichi decided to confront Sento at the place where they first met each other. Transforming into their respective forms, Build eventually managed to overpower Stalk using his new RabbitTank Sparkling form, created using a component of essence from the Pandora Box. Soichi then decided to leave the Box with Sento once again, saying that he could take it back whenever he wanted to.
War for the Pandora Box
- See also: Japanese Civil War
With the Pandora Box in the possession of Sento's team, Gentoku is alerted to the location of the team and raids Nascita, however he finds nothing as the team has already evacuated to an abandoned warehouse along with the Box. Soichi Isurugi leaks the hideout information as well Sento's true identity as Build and Takumi Katsuragi to Gentoku, and Gentoku leads a raid there. After a battle between Build and Cross-Z with Night Rogue and a couple of Smashes, Taizan Himuro arrives in time to break the battle up and secure the Pandora Box at the Touto Government Office.
Losing the Touto Fullbottles secured at official residences to Hokuto, Gentoku deduced there was a Hokuto spy in Touto and came up with a few contingencies: pretend to store the Pandora Box at the abandoned Namba Heavy Industries Research Institute's basement in an attempt to distract Kazumi Sawatari and the Three Hokuto Crows, and to have Ryuga lead a Touto squadron to Hokuto. Before his plan could come to full fruition, however, Gentoku was overruled by his father Taizan Himuro, whom had made a surprise recovery from his coma. Exiled from Touto, Gentoku revealed himself as Night Rogue and attempted to escape with the Pandora Box only to be intercepted by Build, who recovered the Pandora Box as Gentoku only just got away.
However Hokuto threatened to attack Touto should they not give the Box up. Therefore a 1-on-1 Proxy Battle was held between Touto and Hokuto, with both Build and Grease fighting for their country, and the winning country would get to keep the Pandora Box. Sento Kiryu's victory for Touto secured their keeping for the Pandora Box, however it inevitably allowed Seito to invade a now weakened Hokuto, and gave rise to the birth of Seito's newest ally, their own Kamen Rider. Later as the new Rider Rogue is revealed to be a defected Gentoku Himuro, he broke into the Touto government offices and stole the Pandora Box from his father and ran off, causing Build, Grease, and Cross-Z Charge to chase him to the outskirts of the Sky Wall. Both sides fight for the Box, until the intervention of Misora, who as the queen Vernage flung Gentoku and his troops over the Sky Wall, re-securing the Pandora Box for the team. They however hide it in a secret location, guarded by Akaba. However a mole Touto allowed Gentoku Himuro to find the "secret" location and take the Box from them. Akaba is killed in the process, and Build, Cross-Z Charge, and Grease fight Rogue, only to ultimately be defeated as Gentoku escapes with the Box.
With the 3-on-3 Proxy Battle over and Touto having declared victory over Seito, Masakuni Mido is then killed by Evolto and Juzaburo Namba, who takes over as the new "Mido". Seito publically announces the results of the battle, saying that Seito and won. From that point on, Seito had formally declared war against Touto. Beginning with an all-out raid onto Touto territory, Evolto used the 27 Fullbottles in his possession to raise the first level of Pandora's Tower. The Box itself and the tower is set up with a security detail. The three Riders allied with Touto, Build, Cross-Z, and Grease make their way to the tower in an attempt to retrieve it once again. Several times during the battle, Evolto uses the Box to summon Hard Guardians as well as change the scenery. After a long battle that resulted in Ryuga showcasing Cross-Z Magma for the first time, and Evolto's defeat, the team manage to secure the Box back and return it to Taizan Himuro's office with Kazumi guarding it. However Kazumi receives a call from Seito, where they leverage his family in Hokuto for the Pandora Box. Kazumi refused, but luckily Gentoku had saved them and sent them to the Touto offices where they meet up with Kazumi. Scrapping the leverage plan, Seito sends the Hell Bros to lure both Build and Grease away from the Touto offices while Evolto and Rogue make their way to the Box. Cross-Z arrives and fights Evolto, while Rogue breaks into the office and threatens his father for the box. However he reveals the box isn't there and subsequently escapes while kidnapping Taizan. The box safely makes its transit to the team's lab.
Later after Evolto regains his Evol-Driver and poisons Sento, he leverages the team to give up the Pandora Box and all their bottles in exchange for the antidote. The team later puts the box in the central building of the Touto government offices, just in time before Evolto breaks into the lab in an attempt to steal it. Showing mercy, he allows Ryuga to take him to the location of the Box, until he refuses and was willing to fight Evolto for the right to keep it. After the battle concluded, Evolto possessed Ryuga and accessed a new form, Evol Dragon and proceeded inside the central building to take the box. A now cured Sento chases after him, but is utterly defeated and Evolto returns to Pandora's Tower with the box.
Realizing that Evolto requires one last Fullbottle that is in Gentoku's possession, the team agree to work with him to protect it before Evolto arrives and superspeeds everyone to the center of Pandora's Tower. Evolto demonstrates how he raises the tower by inserting a full panel of bottles into the Box, unleashing a massive wave of energy that rose the tower to Level 2. Evolto and the Riders transform to fight each other, with the team planning on grabbing the Fullbottles from Evolto. After a long battle that resulted in Gentoku and Kazumi being defeated, and later Sento, Evolto takes Sento's bottles and proceeds to insert the remaining panels onto the box and ultimately raise the third, fourth, and fifth levels of the tower. The box sucked out all of the bottles' essences and created the Evol-Trigger, albeit unworkable. Vernage appears and teleports herself, Sento, and the Pandora Box back to the lab. Vernage then proceeds to restore the essences of the bottles, shocking Sento.
Sento later realized that to defeat Evolto, he'd needed to borrow power from the Pandora Box. After restoring one of his father's files that was previously deleted by Evolto, Sento was able to condense a panel into a working device compatible with the Build Driver. Sento later took it out to use against Evolto, which raised his Hazard Level but could have potentially killed him. In the end, Sento succumbed and was possessed by Evolto. Evolto proceeded to return to nascita in order to retake the box, but Vernage sensed him coming in time and relocated the shop. Evolto then called Ryuga and leveraged Sento in demand for the box. The two parties met with the Pandora Box and the bottles at stake, however Evolto was successful in reaching his final form, causing the team to strategically retreat. Evolto proceeded to use the Evol-Trigger to create a new black panel and the Lost Bottles. The panel in Sento's possession was successful in creating the Genius Fullbottle.
The team later used the Hazard Trigger to create a new white panel in opposition to Evolto's black panel.
Behind the scenes
- The object's name is a reference to the similarly named Pandora's Box, a dangerous object from a story in Greek Mythology said to contain all the evils of the world. The Pandora of which the box is named after was the first woman created, who was told by the Gods to guard the box but never to open it. However, curiosity got the better of her and she opened it, resulting in entities that embodied pain, death, hate, sickness, sorrow, and so much more to be unleashed upon the world.
- The lack of the "apostrophe-S" in the name may either be a stylistic choice to make it stand out from the story's version or a mistake stemming from said grammatical construct not being present in Japanese.
- The evils released from the box are similar to the Smash created from the Box's unknown power.
- Some variants of the story note that "Hope" remains in the box after all the evils are released. This could be symbolized by Sento, as Build, being the hope of the country against the Smash, and how his power is fueled by the defeated "evils"/Smash through their conversion into Fullbottles.
- In GoGo Sentai Boukenger, there is also a Pandora's Box that is coincidentally assigned a different kind of Hazard Level.