|This article is about a/an episode in Samurai Sentai Shinkenger.|
|WARNING: This episode contains scenes of blood and bloodshed. Viewer discretion is advised!|
The Eighteenth Head of the Shiba House (志葉家十八代目当主 Shiba Ke Jūhachidaime Tōshu) is the forty-fourth episode of Samurai Sentai Shinkenger. It is a prelude to Shinkengers' endgame story, and features a shocking revelation around Takeru and the truth about the head of the Shiba Clan.
During a New Years celebration, the arrival of a special Kuroko and a fire-manipulating Ayakashi forces Takeru into a battle where his greatest secret is finally revealed...
At the Shiba House, everyone gathers for a New Years party, the first lively one in years. But while Jii provides calligraphy pens as his Otoshidama, he sees a strange Kuroko with a letter bearing the Shiba House crest. As the others practice, Takeru reads the letter and tells Jii that they will continue as planned and that he will handle it when the time comes. Meanwhile, at the deserted Rokumon Junk, Shitari is glad to see Dayu returning as he confirms to her that Dokoku sank into the Sanzu River and that he shall return once he finally fills up in the water.
Until then, Shitari summons the Ayakashi Yomotsugari to kill off the eighteenth head of the Shiba House, giving her the Onibidama bullets to fight Shinken Red's Fire Mojikara. When she attacks with a group of Nanashi to bring the Shinkengers into the open, Shinken Red is protected by the others against his wishes. Having had enough of his vassals getting in his way, Shinken Red uses the Inromaru to finish the fight, barely surviving as he slays the Ayakashi with the Mougyu Bazooka. Shitari is perplexed as to how Takeru has endured the Onibidama attacks as Shinken Red gives Shinken Blue the Inromaru to battle the revived Yomotsugari. The Shinkengers form Daikai-Shinkenoh to fight until Yomotsugari manages to disrupt the combination. The Shishi Origami suddenly attacks the Ayakashi on its own as the others realize that Takeru is not the one piloting it.
After Yomotsugari is destroyed, the vassals help Takeru before seeing another Shinken Red, whose retainer Toshizo Tanba appears as well. That Shinken Red ends the transformation and is introduced by Tanba as the eighteenth head of the Shiba House: Kaoru Shiba.
- Takeru Shiba (志葉 丈瑠 Shiba Takeru): Tori Matsuzaka (松坂 桃李 Matsuzaka Tōri)
- Ryunosuke Ikenami (池波 流ノ介 Ikenami Ryūnosuke): Hiroki Aiba (相葉 裕樹 Aiba Hiroki)
- Mako Shiraishi (白石 茉子 Shiraishi Mako): Rin Takanashi (高梨 臨 Takanashi Rin)
- Chiaki Tani (谷 千明 Tani Chiaki): Shogo Suzuki (鈴木 勝吾 Suzuki Shōgo)
- Kotoha Hanaori (花織 ことは Hanaori Kotoha): Suzuka Morita (森田 涼花 Morita Suzuka)
- Genta Umemori (梅盛 源太 Umemori Genta): Keisuke Sohma (相馬 圭祐 Sōma Keisuke)
- Kaoru Shiba (志葉 薫 Shiba Kaoru): Runa Natsui (夏居 瑠奈 Natsui Runa)
- Hikoma Kusakabe (日下部 彦馬 Kusakabe Hikoma): Gorou Ibuki (伊吹 吾郎 Ibuki Gorō)
- Toshizo Tanba (丹波歳三 Tanba Toshizō): Kazuyuki Matsuzawa (松澤 一之 Matsuzawa Kazuyuki)
- Secret Lantern Daigoyou (秘伝提灯ダイゴヨウ Hiden Chōchin Daigoyō, Voice): Kōichi Tōchika (遠近 孝一 Tōchika Kōichi)
- Dayu Usukawa (薄皮 太夫 Usukawa Dayū, Voice): Romi Park (朴 璐美 Paku Romi)
- Shitari of the Bones (骨のシタリ Hone no Shitari, Voice): Chō (チョー)
- Juzo Fuwa (腑破 十臓 Fuwa Jūzō): Mitsuru Karahashi (唐橋 充 Karahashi Mitsuru)
- Shinken Red - Super, Saishuu Ougi
- Princess Shinken Red - Hidden Shield
- Shinken Blue - Super, Shin Samurai Gattai
- Shinken Pink - Hidden Shield
- Shinken Green - Hidden Shield
- Shinken Yellow - Hidden Shield
- Shinken Gold - Sushi (Sushi Changer), Ebi (Ebi Origami)
- This is the first Super Sentai episode to air in the 2010s.
- As part of Super Hero Time, this episode aired alongside Kamen Rider W episode 16, The F Afterglow/Reclaim Your Partner.
- Key Title Kanji: 主 (Lord; the title used for the leader of the Shiba clan, both for Takeru as well as for Kaoru, the true leader)
- This episode marks the introduction of Kaoru Shiba, the true head of the Shiba House who also holds the distinction of being the first female Red in Super Sentai history.
- Viewership: 2.5%
- With a rating of 2.5%, this was the lowest rated episode of Shinkenger, 3.4% below the series average.
Home video releases
- The third volume of the Samurai Sentai Shinkenger Blu-Ray Box Set comes with episodes 34-49, and was released on June 13th 2014 at a cost of 20,790 yen.
Samurai Sentai Shinkenger DVD Volume 11 features episodes 41-45: Act 41: The Sent Words, Act 42: Two Centuries' Ambition, Act 43: One Last Sword, Act 44: The Eighteenth Head of the Shiba House and Act 45: The Impersonator.