Headscratchers / Samurai Jack

  • Jack only uses a sword. A melee weapon. A weapon totally useless if the given opponent is outside his reach. So why doesn't anyone ever just try sniping him in the head while he sleeps or dropping bombs from an aircraft half a mile above his head? Aku not doing this is justifiable because he's Stupid Evil and generally a total moron, but why don't any of the innumerable bounty hunters seeking Jack's head try anything like that?
    • It's pretty well established that Jack always hears the projectiles coming.
    • One, what that guy said. Two, then the show would be over in a rather depressing way.
    • Jack spent the latter half of his battle with the three blind archers (Episode 7) purely using his hearing to dodge their rain of arrows, with virtual impunity, while blindfolded. When the sense is that good, combined with his excellent reflexes, bullets don't pose the same threat level to him as they should. Plus the average bounty hunter is simply not that strong or skilled (likely smart either) compared to him... one episode had him defeat four simultaneously in the instant it took a drop of water to fall.
    • Sniper rifles and saturation bombing haven't made any appearances in the series. It's possible that these technologies never developed (remember, we're in an alternate 'bad' future) - but more likely that they've been suppressed so that they won't be used against Aku's forces.
    • It seems that in the new season, Jack has lived long enough in the future that he has no problems using guns.

  • Why does Jack constantly not take a chance to return to the past in favor of defeating an evil threatening some people, when doing so would allow him to eradicate the source of all the evil? Bring up Lawful Stupid or Failure Is the Only Option and you'll regret it.
    • Because every time he can, theres a catch. In one instance, there was a chance that the space ship he was riding would be destroyed by enemy fire with him and innocent civilians on board, so he opted to guarantee the safe passage of the civilians over the chance of dying and failing. In another, a wishing well was revealed to be ruled by a malevolent spirit, so he decided to destroy the spirit rather than fall victim to yet another a trick. In nearly every case there's a clear and logical reason for Jack doing what he does other than simple altruism, although that is probably a large factor in his decisions.
    • That aside, unless Time Travel in that universe can create Alternate Timelines, won't all the people Jack has saved throughout the series essentially vanish once he goes back in time and beats Aku? Assuming it will create a second parallel timeline (the alternative is way too morally dissonant), Jack has to beat Aku twice, once in the future and again in the past.
      • Actually, based on what similar plots have done, if he defeated Aku in the past, the people of the future would be the same except more prosperous because they were never under Aku's heel.
      • I always thought it had something to do with his own personal code of honour: he simply can't ignore innocents in peril to go back in time because he places too much value in the life of innocents, and cannot simply sacrifice even one innocent person to achieve his ends, even through inaction. There's also the fact that he actually has TIME to save them: assuming Aku doesn't intervene, Jack can simply return to the past at the same point he left and finish the job, thus he can go back from any point in the future he likes, thus sticking around and sorting out the current crisis is no problem to him as long as he finds a way back in the end. Essentially, Jack's world doesn't run on San Dimas Time.
      • It still makes no sense; going back to the past completely would undo his actions in the future, unless his presence in the future would somehow create a duplicate version of him that would appear and fix the same problems in an Aku-less world. I honestly doubt that Genndy Tartakovsky planned that. Also, going back to the past and killing Aku would prevent thousands of years of suffering under Aku's reign from ever happening and would generally help the world on a much wider scale compared to, say, saving a group of generic Asian warriors - it's a much more benevolent action if you think about it. Jack's way of thinking seems illogical: "See, I could use this portal to prevent Aku from ever taking over the world, thus creating a brighter future. Or I could avoid doing that in favor of saving a small group of innocents. Yep, I'm sure that's the right thing to do."
      • You phrase it like he had much time to think about it. If memory serves, lots of problematic things were happening at the time when he saved said Asian warriors. He might not have been thinking straight.
      • It's psychological. Jack could just leave those people to their death, go back in time, kill Aku and rain happiness on the world, but it's just psychological that those people died when he could've protected them. Also, how does time travel solve paradoxes anyway? If it's alternate universes, then he really did just leave those people to die. Yes, he's saving trillions if he kills Aku, but he actually knew those people. Plus, he's a samurai, with honor and all that.
      • So knowing someone makes them more valuable? Jack has fallen prey to compassion he could go back into the past and Aku's world would never have happened, but compassion prevents him from doing what needs to be done.
      • I believe there's something you all may have overlooked - Jack has a feudal level of education. How in the world would he even be able to conceive of alternate timelines, or these people being utterly different thanks to Aku having never been there when he goes back in time? He had a struggle with the relatively simple though of being flung forward in time-so how would he be able to think of possible paradoxes or such from time travel.
      • Even if he knows about the possibility of alternate timelines, Jack wouldn't know if it were true anymore than we do. Yes, going back might prevent the Bad Future from happening, but there's just as much of a chance that it would cause a second one to form while the people in the first were still in danger. Without being certain that defeating Aku in the past would prevent the Bad Future, Jack won't risk leaving someone in danger if he has the opportunity to save them.
    • I think he's staying so he can get a few dozen extra levels so that when he goes to fight Aku in the past, it'll be even easier than the first time. I mean, look at how easily he does when he runs into him in the future.
      • This is partially confirmed in one episode. Jack is about to go back to the past when the portal's guardian stops him with a vision of his future self and tells him that he needs to get to that point before he's ready to go back and defeat Aku. To put it in perspective, this is what he looks like. "A few extra dozen levels" indeed.
      • Minor correction: Jack was out cold at this point, and the Guardian was talking to himself.
    • There's no guarantee that any of the method's he's found to return to the past would've actually worked. So, suppose he did ignore an innocent victim in order to exploit a device that failed. And later found out that traveling forwards in time is easy, but traveling backwards in time is impossible. Perhaps he can't afford to take that risk.
      • Or the risk that he'll successfully go back to his time of origin and lose anyway. Past-Aku may not have legions of robots and mutants and whatever to fight beside him, but he's no pushover either. Jack hopes he can erase Aku's Bad Future, but he can't guarantee he'll succeed.
    • Also, it might be that if Jack left Future Aku around when he was next to the portal, Future Aku could also use the portal at the same time, travel back as well, and team up with Past Aku.
      • You're assuming that Aku is the source of all evil. He isn't, he's just the most powerful evil on the block. In addition to other points made about time travel not being guaranteed. The source of your potential time travel is evil? Well then look before you leap. The alien armies are attacking and you have a million to one chance that they will interrupt your time travel, which may not work, and innocents may die. Well not worth the chance is it?
    • Isn't it possible that he's afraid? Think about it, if Jack went back and killed Aku then this timeline wouldn't have existed for him to be sent to. So maybe he realizes that if he goes back he'll fail. Alternatively he just wants to deal with future Aku on the off chance an alternate timeline is created.
    • He may be aware of the chance that going back in time could create an alternate timeline. In that case, he'd basically be abandoning the world to Aku, with nobody to stand up to him.
    • Another possibility is that, even if Jack managed to, somehow grasp the concept behind time travel, he's still not 100% positive that he will defeat Aku, if memory doesn't fail me, he's been shown to still have doubts and uncertainties, so it's a possibility. He, however, is positive that he can make the difference for the people in distress now, so he chooses this option.
    • I made this same observation to a friend while we were watching this once, and his answer was the best one and probably the most accurate to Jack's characterization: that even though Jack knows, on an intellectual level, that he might keep those people from being hurt or suffering by using the time portal, on an emotional level he cannot get past the fact that he is leaving people to die when he is capable of doing something to stop it. Basically Jack cannot rationalize his humanity into being quiet and letting him do the logical thing.
    • When he was a child, he ran from his country and his father when Aku arrived. While it wasn't of his own volition, he must have felt that because he ran, his father and countrymen suffered for decades under the will of Aku. When he confronted Aku again, he hesitated and was flung into the future, dooming them again. Jack likely has a mental barrier preventing him from leaving people behind, especially if it's possible for him to do something about it. It's also understandable that he might also know that in the universe, there's a lot more ways back into the past. He only needs one portal to set him back to the time he needs to be. Also, as someone else mentioned, Jack may have indeed gone through portals already, just that they deposited him in random places in time, so he might risk losing one chance at going back in time because he knows it might not even be the right one, but he knows that those he sacrifices now will indeed die.

  • The above makes me wonder; Jack won't take a way back if there are innocents suffering, and innocents will suffer as long as Aku is around, so why doesn't he retry to assassinate Aku? Thinking about it, it bugs me that Jack hasn't realized that as long as Aku is around he can't in good conscience return to the past, not to mention that Aku has infrequently snatched or destroyed his means of doing so. So why wander around searching for time travel trinkets when his real mission (not a sidequest) ought to be to kill Aku.
    • Because Aku doesn't want to be found. He's capable of moving his castle, disguising it, hiding it from view, etc. The closest he ever got to assassinating Aku was that episode with the gangsters. He was this close to finishing Aku off when the gangsters sap'd him from behind. After that, Aku moved his castle; who knows where he went? TL;DR, It's a lot easier for Aku to find Jack then for Jack to find Aku.
    • Jack may be eons behind the times, but he's not stupid. He attacks targets of opportunity. He doesn't waste time trying to assassinate Aku because for the majority of the series he has no idea where Aku is. So he spends most of his time fleeing bounty hunters, performing random acts of heroism, and searching for ways to travel back to his own time. Notice though that in "Jack and the Gangsters", the very femtosecond Jack senses an opportunity to get close enough to assassinate Aku he immediately drops everything and seizes it (and comes damn close to succeeding, too).

  • Why is it that over the several thousand years that Aku had the Earth enslaved, those gods that made Jack's sword never thought to, I dunno, make another one? Or, God forbid, they get up off their butts and lay the smack-down on Aku themselves?
    • Well, they probably think Aku is a human-solvable problem. They were battling what amounted to an Eldritch Abomination of infinite evil and darkness of which Aku is but a small hammy fragment. The Scostman's sword can probably kill Aku, and several of the magical doodads encountered on Jack's journey could harm him as well. Jack himself has already been a hair's breath away from killing him at least a dozen times as well, it's mostly act of plot that no one else (that we know of) has gotten close enough to try.
    • Or it could be that many people have gotten swords, as shown by the Scotsman. It's just that those people always lose and/or Aku keeps flinging them through time. Once in the future, they try to make their way, kill themselves, or some thug/Aku finds and kills them. Perhaps Jack is just lucky to have survived Aku's fight, as well as emerging into the future. Or perhaps there are hundreds more like him, phasing in time, living out their lives as rebels, and eventually dying. Aku's reign has apparently lasted thousands of years, so that's a lot of lifetimes.
    • The Scotsman. Aside from that, those Gods have the entire universe to look after. In the big scheme of things, Aku might not be a real threat.
    • Considering the many, many threat's Aku's thrown at Jack, it's not a big assumption to say that a lesser warrior wouldn't have a prayer of lasting long enough to get near the Big A, let alone defeat him.
    • If the portrayal of Ra in "Jack in Egypt" is any indication, the gods in the Jack-verse are clearly the mysterious kind. Whatever plan(s) they may or may not have, they're not sharing it/them with us mere mortals.
    • Jack trained all over the world for years before returning to face Aku, most of the people he learned from are dead. Another thing is that the Gods helped defeat Aku the first time because it was their fault for not checking. They left it up to Jack's Dad to defeat Aku because he'd given him a physical form. They helped stop Aku the first time because it was their fault he existed in the first place. But the second time, he'd been set free in a completely different way that the Gods aren't responsible for. So the simple fact is, as mentioned before, they've got a huge job of watching over the universe, they helped took care of Aku once because they were responsible and after that, it was no longer personal enough for them to get involved.
    • In "Birth of Evil" we've been shown that the "tiny" fragment that would later become Aku is the size of a meteor, and the weapons the gods were using to fight the shapeless blob of evil Aku came from caused damage to MUCH bigger sections. If the gods were to intervene in the fight on Earth, or anywhere else, the collateral damage would be completely unacceptable. As in, Earth shattering kaboom, unacceptable. Forging the sword out of the Emperor's soul might have been pushing it, as it is.
    • It's also possible that the gods - being, y'know, gods - have some measure of perception of Jack's personal subjective future, and already know he's going to find his way back to his own time and defeat Aku. In which case, they don't need to make another sword, just wait for the first one to (eventually) fulfill its purpose.
    • Another possibility is that when Jack's father tried to kill Aku he changed the nature of the evil involved. After all he tried to kill a mass of evil using poison and fire, which gave that evil a mind of its own that seems to have incorporated the poison and fire into itself. In effect Aku became a mix of cosmic evil and human evil from Jack's father, so only the blade forged of the opposing good qualities can destroy Aku.

  • In "Jack in Egypt", the Minions of Set were originally sealed away by the power of Ra. It's also revealed that he can easily destroy the Minions. That makes me wonder: why did Ra seal away the Minions of Set instead of killing them the first time?
    • Who knows, the gods of this world seem to be clueless. And as many people have already asked before, why haven't the gods killed Aku themselves, if they were able to destroy that space blob he was made from?

  • When Jack is about to slay Aku, why is it that he (Aku) has the energy to hurl him thousands of years into the future, but not vaporize him?
    • He's stupid? He shows this many times in the future.
    • We don't know how Aku's magic works. Maybe flinging open random portals takes up less "mana" than his eye beams do. Maybe he was desperate and just used the first spell that came to mind. Or maybe he thought forcing Jack to live in a world that was neatly wrapped around his finger would be more satisfying than just killing him.
    • Aku had attempted and failed to kill Jack several times through out the fight. Jack was essentially bypassing all the attempts on his life with minimal effort, thus Aku was able to discern that killing him at the current time was impossible. So he did something Jack would not expect. Considering the course of the fight already, if Aku had attempted to simply kill Jack then Jack most likely would of evaded or stopped the attack and finished him off.
    • Also, the 'fling him in the future' trick worked up pretty well: as soon as he arrives, Jack is hit by three different flying cars and nearly gunned down by a fourth before he can even start to understand where he is and what's happening precisely because he has no idea where he is and what's happening. Then Jack starts understanding where he is and what's happening... And nearly had an Heroic B.S.O.D. when he learns that Aku rules and, as far as the three guys he's speaking with, it's always been that way. A lesser man would have been killed by the cars or broke down upon learning how bad he failed...
    • What if that "flung" actually was his "exit-strategy"? Just imagine some Gollum-ish Scene with Aku trying to deal with the sword he knew could hurt him, and which he was unable to find after defeating the man who originally wielded it:
      Aku(worrired Voice): What shall we do if someone ever finds the sword and steps forth to oppose us?
      Aku(mischievous voice): Then we´ll just kill him!
      Aku(confident voice): YEEEES! WE´LL JUST KILL HIM!
      Aku(worried Voice): But if we can´t?
      Aku(another worried voice): Yes, what if we can´t?
      Aku(bored voice): Argh, can´t we just deal with this later?
      (Realises what he just said)
      Aku(mischievous voice): Yeeeeessss...we´ll just deal with it later ... muahahahahahahaHAHAHAHARHARHAR!!!!
    • In this (fake) context, the time travel would be a back-up plan Aku prepared BEFORE the battle, just in case it would come to the exact situation that forced him to send Jack away. Of course he could have made that prepared spell a lethal one as well, but assuming he wouldn´t be able to kill him before, a different approach(trying not to loose instead of winning) would make this a very logical choice.

  • Just what is Jack's name?
    • It's deliberately never stated. In the first episode he takes up the nickname Jack, however he never states his real name, and quite possibly for good reason: considering how much time travel tech Aku has stolen/destroyed, it's possible Aku now has his own methods of going back in time. Therefore, knowing Jack's real name would mean Aku could just go back in time and kill Jack when he was a child, thus preventing him from ever rising up against him, and ensuring that he rules for all time.
    • But Aku already knows Jack's father is the Emperor - if he really needed to know Jack's real name all he'd have to do is ask.
    • It seems to be more honor related than anything else: Jack had spent his entire life preparing to kill Aku and take his homeland back, but just couldn't finish the job when it counted. He failed so badly that the entire galaxy suffered under Aku's reign for thousands of years. He doesn't reveal anything about his name or homeland because he feels that he's not worthy of taking his birthright until Aku is dead.
    • The only clue this Troper found was in the episode, "Jack Under the Sea", when Jack is about to introduce himself to the Triceraquins. He says that his name is, "G-...Jack.". It starts with a G.
    • Japanese Emperors change their names when they are named Crown Prince, and again at death. Jack's father pledged Jack to the quest to defeat Aku, but we don't know if he ever formally named him Crown Prince; it could be that Jack only has his childhood name, and isn't sure if it's appropriate to change it now that he's an adult if there's no Japanese throne anymore.

  • Whatever happened to those guys whose essence was stolen by that major Aku minion, Demongo? We see him getting creamed by the numerous essences of the guys he stole over the years, I kinda wished they'd bring them back at some point...
    • Well, considering that Aku finished off Demongo, those guys probably moved on to the afterlife.
    • This troper was interested to note that one of the creatures assaulting Jack in the graveyard bore a strong resemblance to Demongo, who was quickly dealt with by Jack.

  • Why is it that this is a dystopian future where the planet has been stripped of all resources... and yet the most common scenery on the show is huge stretches of pristine wilderness?
    • Because Humanity and its various offshoots, uplifts and variants are mostly gathered into centralized areas where they can be tightly controlled. As long as the remaining areas are too low-tech to threaten Aku, he doesn't care what refugees huddle out in the wilderness. Consequently those areas are relatively unpopulated and have returned to their natural state over the thousand years or so since Aku conquered the world. (Not that that situation makes good strategic sense, but as stated above Aku gets by on pure brute force, not brains.) The "resources" stripped away are probably mostly metals and fuel, and trees can grow without iron and coal deposits under them.
    • Hm. I wonder if this is the real reason the Gods never appointed another champion to deal with Aku (see the previous discussion)... he may have slain billions, but he's good for the environment!
    • Perhaps Aku lets areas heal every so often so he can destroy them again later.

  • The end of the "No! Jump Good!" episode. Or rather, the lack of it. It's kind of annoying that Failure Is the Only Option was just taken for granted by that point.
    • True, but consider that the episode began with Jack failing to capture the same time portal doo-hickey and being left humbled and humiliated on the ground as Aku flies off with it. If the episode ended the same way, with Jack suffering a similar humiliating failure despite spending the entire episode learning to jump good, that would be quite the Downer Ending. The real problem with this episode is that it's rather pointless from a narrative perspective. Jack learns how to "jump good" in order to help him capture the time portal, and then...fails to capture the time portal, making the whole "jump good" training montage a pointless exercise. The monkeys learn how to fight and defend themselves from the gorillas, but they're never seen or mentioned again so seeing them learn to defend themselves was also entirely pointless. This episode would have worked better if it had aired right before the episode "Jack and the Monks" where Jack becomes crippled with depression after suffering multiple crushing failures and has to be reminded what he's fighting for.
    • I think the issue is that the episode ends with Jack catching Aku completely off-guard, in such a way that it looks like he's on his way to finally succeeding in his quest... and we never hear anything about it after that; the next episode is back to status quo, with the implicit assumption that no, he failed again.
    • I always assumed it was due to Anarchic Order. That the Jump Good Episode was actually the last in the series, where Jack finally succeeded, and everything else happened before it, but was shown after. (There are probably plot points proving me wrong, but I don't care, because Jack totally deserves to make it that time.)
    • It's entirely possible that the time portal jumped Jack back in time, say, five hundred or a thousand years...or had some sort of catch preventing him from using it to get all the way back to his own time, similar to the (evil) magic well in an early episode.
    • It's also entirely possible that he beat Aku, who retreated, then the portal turned out to not be something that suited his needs. For example, it might have been a portal in space rather than time, which is certainly useful, but it won't send him back in time. Also, most time portals appear to have some sort of thing about them making them not a 'quick fix', the guardian of one portal and the evil nature of another. So beating Aku may have not been what it took to use it, maybe he needs to find a spell of some sort or something to use it. That and the ability to Jump Good was actually used quite a bit after that, so Jack did get use of it.
    • Up until this point, Aku's been trolling Jack- you can see it here. Then, after Jack learns how to Jump Good, we never see Aku screw around with Jack that blatantly ever again. Jack may not go back to the past that episode, but the way he defeated Aku was enough for Aku to remember why he was afraid of him in the first place.
    • Sicne Aku was holding the portal, it would have been easy for him to throw it in panic. Either far away or throwing it down so it smashes and breaks.
    • I always assumed the portal was just Schmuck Bait for Jack that never actually did anything that Aku just used to delay and screw with Jack. So at the end Jack got the portal just to find out it didn't work, and Aku still gets the last laugh.

  • I was just watching Jack and the Zombies, and something bugs me. Aku's watching Jack through his magic mirror, sees Jack throw a stick to determine what direction he'll go in, and Aku telekinetically moves the stick. Okay...if he could that through the portal, why doesn't he do the same thing with his omega beams and just fry Jack while he's asleep? Or just send a never ending stream of minions through the mirror, directly to Jack's location?
    • The first one likely wouldn't work. The second is what he does all the time. Jack just keeps killing them.
    • Maybe because it's not a reach-out-and-touch-someone kind of portal? If it was, Aku would probably have no problem doing just that...except that he likes to play with his food, so to speak. Anyway, telekinesis only requires that you be able to focus on the object you're trying to move. In other words, you only need to be able to see it; kinda the point of telekinesis, don't you think?
    • I dont think it was even telekinesis, it seems like Aku can slightly alter probability at a distance.
      • Aku clearly moved the stick after it had come to rest on the ground.
    • Perhaps Aku's destructive eye-beams don't work the same way as his telekinesis? The mere fact that all you've seen him move telekinetically was a stick suggests his powers are very limited in that way.

  • In the episode with the warrior trapped inside the rock golem... Why didn't the warrior try to leave the mountain, attack Aku's troops, and die in battle that way? He gets to go to Valhalla, and get some small revenge on the demon who trapped him in a And I Must Scream position. Nothing ever shows that he is tied to the mountain or anything...
    • Doesn't make for a very good episode though. I guess the golem was there long enough that if he could leave he would. Since by that point in time he hadn't we can reasonably assume, for whatever reason, he couldn't. I'm sure there is a great explanation for why this is but explaining all that wasn't important to the story, would you prefer an entire episode just explaining in detail the minute specifics of a curse cast on some poor one episode character?
      • More to the point, Aku is a sorcerer. An immensely powerful one. He wouldn't have fought - he'd have just smashed the warrior into atoms and sent him back into the rockbed and made sure he stayed that way.
    • I don't think he knows Aku is still alive and is currently in control of the world.
    • The Warrior isn't capable of leaving. He's trapped in the mountain by Aku's spell, which prevents him from leaving. Sure, he eventually gained the ability to (magicially? telekinetically? I'm not sure) move the rock around him to create a body and death course, but it's limited to a certain distance. If he eventually became capable of leaving he no doubt would have, either to hunt down Aku or find a warrior that could kill him, it would have been a lot easier and quicker than what he did do.

  • Why exactly didn't Jack and/or the Scotsman just cut off the handcuffs in episode XI, instead of waiting for the humongous bullet?
    • Cutting a chain in half is not easy. Not even (I would imagine) if you're using super-duper magical swords to do it.
      • ...harder than cutting through armored, solid metal robots on an hourly basis with no apparent difficulty? The sword's cutting ability has only ever once been questioned, that I can think of, and that was against revolutionarily advanced war robots.
      • Yes, harder than cutting through armored, solid metal robots (potentially). Chains don't sit still when you hit them, and that blunts the impact. Also, it would have been an awkward angle to cut from. Also also, we have no idea what kind of super-awesome un-cuttable metal alloy those chains might have been made of.
    • Another thing, both of them wield two-handed weapons. The power of a stroke from a double-hander is from changed angle of your hands as well as the swing of your arm. The two of them being chained would have little arm swing and no hand angle, reducing or eliminating their cutting power.
    • Maybe they couldn't agree on who should be the one to cut the chain because neither one of them trusted the other not to, say, chop the other guy's hand off.
    • Rule of Cool: Jumping up and letting a huge bullet shatter the chain is way cooler than just cutting it.
      • This is most likely the reason. Given what both of these swords are capable of cutting through, a simple draw cut would have almost certainly gotten through the chain with any kind of logic and consistency applied. But that isn't as flashy.

  • What was it that freed Aku from being sealed by Jack's father? At first I thought the seal weakened on its own after a few centuries, but Jack was shown to have been born just prior to Aku being defeated the first time. Aku is then shown coming back when Jack looks to be about four or five years of age. A really short amount of time for the swords effects wearing off enough for Aku to break free. I also don't recall it ever being mentioned someone intentionally freeing Aku. On a related note why didn't the Emperor just kill Aku in the first place instead of making him Sealed Evil in a Can? The sword seems to have the ability to destroy him permanently.
    • I always assumed it was part of some elaborate Gambit Roulette on Aku's part. Maybe he tricked Jack's father into thinking he was dead by sealing himself into the tree until a set of astrological circumstances were met. That way he can use the time in the tree to recharge his mojo, same as he did to jack, and then catch Jackdad off guard. O.K. not that brilliant, I just like to think that aku and jack are 12th level intellects and that the shows non-sequiturs are part of the elaborate chess game they play with one-another. Jack never get's back in time because Aku has put multiple levels of blockage in place that make most methods of time travel ineffective. Aku can't be assassinated because Aku's lair cannot both exists in a sub dimension and has it's entrances shuffled around the universe randomly, and aku never leaves said lair without everything planned out. Wow, I'm way off topic.
    • About the Emperor not killing Aku, he explained it in the very first episode: he thought that the sword would do all the job, and all he managed to do was to seal Aku away. When Jack expressed a similar view, he immediately corrected him, warning him that it was only a tool and that his mind would set the path to slay Aku in spite of his deception. Long story short, the Emperor tried and fucked up, but realized where he failed and told Jack how to do the job.
    • The first episode opened with an eclipse and the Aku-tree reacting to it in some way that undid the seal, setting him free.

  • Speaking of Aku and Jack's father: what was with that poison arrow that brought Aku to life? The monks gave it to the emperor with the promise that it will finish the threat once and for all, so I guessed that it was blessed by the gods or something, but no: it was just some mysterious liquid without any explanation whatsoever. Giving consciousness to an all-powerful genocidal demon as a possible side effect seems like a pretty serious oversight on their part.

  • In "Jack vs. the Lava Monster." I was totally waiting for the Viking to, as the Valkyries took him to Valhalla, say to Jack something along the lines of "I will save a place for you in the mead-hall, my friend. I eagerly await your coming." But it didn't happen!
    • He knew Jack wouldn't die in battle, as we seen Jack will surely die from old age after ruling the his kingdom after beating Aku, that still surely wont prevent him visiting, though, with enough titles as he already has.
    • Jack isn't a Viking for one, and doesn't follow the Norse faith. Most likely there are three afterlives since there are three gods shown in the series, it's likely that Jack's people worship the Vishnu stand-in.
      • Just because three deities were shown, it doesn't mean that they're the only ones who exist in this show's universe; you're forgetting that the Greek Titans were also shown. Also Vishnu is a Hindu god, and doesn't have much of a following in Japan. The Japanese people worship the Shinto/Buddhist pantheon.

  • During the quest to get the time travelling jewel, Jack falls into a pile of quicksand. Why didn't Aku just let him sink? Aku explicitly tells Jack that he destroyed the stone to prevent Jack from going back through time. Well, he would have a hard time travelling back to the past if he is drowned by sand.
    • He's stupid?
    • Perhaps he has some degree of respect for Jack? Letting him die in quicksand probably would've been an 'unworthy' death for his ultimate opponent. There's also the possibility that Aku simply believed Jack could've got himself out of there. If he hadn't helped him, then Jack might've realized the trick, escaped, and now known Aku was tricking him, ruining the plan.
      • Think about it this way: By this time in the series, Jack has spent, let's say, a couple months in the world run by Aku. That means his fight against the dark lord could inspire others to tamper with time and wipe Aku's reign away. Remember, Jack was the only one who knew the location of the gem, and the test required to use it. As long as that crystal remained, so did the threat of Aku's destruction. Additionally, it could be that Aku doesn't want him dead yet; he wants him broken spiritually beforehand. Killing Jack in battle (letting him die while on a quest to stop him) would make him Martyr Samurai Jack. Convincing the warrior that his is a fruitless effort would be a grander victory (and almost happened in a later episode).
    • Kill him? Without seeing the expression on Jack's face when he realizes he's been tricked and used? I think not!
    • At that moment, before Ikra pulled him out, the look on Jack's face was one of rejection, not impending death. He was sad that Ikra seemingly abandoned him (she didn't miss a beat while running off into the distance). He probably had a way out of it, and Aku knew. This is the same guy who survived being hit by a car and blown up on a regular basis.

  • Okay, so why doesn't Aku, upon the very first time he has difficulty with Jack after having thrown him into the future, throw him further into the future? Any time Jack gains allies, Aku could throw him into a future in which those allies have aged to death. Any time Jack learns a skill, Aku could throw him into a future wherein that skill has effectively become obsolete due to the latest technology. Any time Jack's questing after a MacGuffin that'll get him back to the past, Aku could throw him into a future in which Aku's already found it and dealt with it. No, it probably wouldn't make good storytelling, but it'd make a modicum of sense; just saying, it'd be nice if they could at least provide some explanation as to why this doesn't happen, other than just assuming Aku's an idiot.
    • Maybe Aku can only use that spell once, or once per person. Of course, that's a pretty weak answer, so I submit the following as well. The first time Aku used that spell, he was on his last legs, and caught Jack completely off guard. Also, Aku seems to need to be there in person to cast that spell, let's just say that he does confront Jack again, and he tries doing what you say, Jack might be expecting it this time, and he would be able to react to it better than the first time.
    • Without knowing the default rules for time travel in the SJ universe - and without knowing the rules of Aku's particular style of black magic - how can we know the limitations of either? The fact that he doesn't is the only evidence that he can't. No, the real nasty move would have been to get Jack's sword from him - it was managed a few times - and then hurl the sword into the past.
      • That kinda happens in issues #11-15 of the comic books (or book 3 of the collection) and the result of jack not having the sword pretty much sends every single assassin and bounty hunter after him and his situation is pretty dire to say the least.
    • The time portal was a last ditch effort by a beaten foe on an opponent far stronger than him, Aku CAN do it again, but he'd have to get close to Jack to do that, and Jack wont fall for the same trick twice.

  • Was "Seasons of Death" a WTF? episode, or was that just me? Yes, some of it was very coolio, but what was with the whole spring part? Did anyone get that?
    • It might have been a Secret Test of Character, to see if anything can distract Jack from his quest. It might have been an intentional parallel to the "Summer" segment that began the episode - unlike that segment, the antagonist isn't a mirage and could very well entrap some other unlucky traveler in the future. It might even have been intended as something of a Subversion of the typical Jack formula; the nature sprite is one of the few antagonists that Jack never defeats/kills; he brushes the whole thing off as a hallucination.
    • Its just a visually interesting story, it doesnt have any deeper meaning.

  • In the opening narration, Aku mentions that he unleashed an "unspeakable evil". It sounds like he's talking about an Eldritch Abomination, but the image is pretty much Aku. So he unleashed himself from a prison?
    • Aku IS an Eldritch Abomination, so yeah, that's exactly what he did.
    • The "unspeakable evil" refers to his actions. Not an entity.
  • Was it supposed to be obvious that Ikra was really Aku because I'm not really sure honestly.
    • First time watching it I had no idea. The second time however, it is pretty obvious. Ikra shares the same colors as Aku (black, green, and red), the person Jack talks to at the start warns of great evil just as Ikra arrives, and the shape-shifting toward the end was a good giveaway (even first time viewers started to catch on by then). However this episode set up Aku's transformations and made them easier to spot down the line, making it more obvious now.

  • Is Jack's sword harmless against an innocent, or is it useless in the hands of evil? I've seen it described as both on TV Tropes and I'm trying to figure out which is correct (yes, they're not mutually exclusive, but I doubt it's both).
    • If I had to guess, I'd go with "harmless against an innocent." While not the best reference, in The Aku Infection Jack (being possessed by Aku's evil) slashes at several of the salamander monks, but none die. However because Aku's evil is possessing Jack, if the sword was useless in the hands of evil, it wouldn't do any harm at all. To add to this, earlier in that same episode Aku-Jack killed an innocent robot, so the sword is able to harm at least some things when used by evil. It just can't kill innocent people I guess; the real question is "what is considered innocent?"
    • I remember the quote as "In the hands of evil, it can never harm an innocent." Meaning only a good person could harm an innocent with it, but an evil person can harm non-innocents.
      • This. If you think about the episode named The Aku Infection, Jack killed an innocent robot without any effort whatsoever, while when Aku was in charge, he couldn't even make a scratch on the monks defending the portal. (Not to mention the case of X9.)
    • As I recall there was one episode where Jack tries to kill a deer for food, and it turns out the sword can't cut it. So it's probably just that it can't harm the innocent no matter what the morality of the one who wields it is. Also, I think killing an innocent robot is allowed because the sword doesn't recognize it as a living being. Or maybe because the sword was forged long before robots were invented.
      • Or maybe, the sword could cut through that particular robot, because it was not actually innocent?

  • The entity that spawned Aku. Bizarre as the question may sound, is there any indication, besides superficial, that it was even evil in the first place? In those brief scenes that featured it, it was just roaming through cosmos, minding its own business, and those three gods chased it for no good reason! It even tried to escape, and only retaliated after being attacked. Couldn't Tartakovsky have it devour some planets or something, so that we would at least know it deserved being brutally murdered? Because otherwise I can't shake off a hilarious assumption that it was perfectly harmless or at least not overtly malicious, and Aku only came to be such a terrible being because those Jerkass Gods killed his parent, so he's taking revenge on their domain.
    • So in the comic that continues the story, Ra tells Jack (long story there) that the big black thing was a formless void of ultimate evil, and later he also use the word corruption when talking about it. Seems like they weren't guessing that the thing was evil, but did what the Aku pool did on earth, just on an intergalactic scale. We just never see that.
    • In "Birth of Evil," the formless entity was not just "roaming through the cosmos, minding its own business." It actively lashed out at the gods, grabbed one, and tried to corrupt/consume him. Had he been alone, it would have succeeded. It's only because there were three gods working together that they had a chance, and even then, all they could do was whittle it down, a little bit at a time, for a very, very long fight, during which a "tiny" piece escaped destruction and crashed to Earth.

  • Aku's fingers. Sometimes there's four of them on each hand, sometimes there's five. Is it simply an instance of Off Model, or am I missing something?
    • I can dismiss it as "...I, Aku, the shape-shifting Master of Darkness..."

  • Why is Aku constantly referred to as a male? I highly doubt that an immortal being of darkness would care about such puny human concepts as gender.
    • That's the point. Since Aku doesn't care, he won't bother himself by correcting any wrong assumptions people have on that matter. Also, his beard and his voice are things usually associated to males, aren't they?
    • Maybe because he refers to himself as male? When challenging Jack to a duel, he explicitly says "man to man." Are you going to tell the Eldritch Abomination he can't be male?
    • To be fair, there's nothing saying an Eldritch Abomination can't be male in the first place.

  • When Jack first met the Scotsman, the two crossed paths on a bridge too thin for them to keep walking in opposite directions. They started arguing about who should walk all the way back to the side they came from, which escaladed into a three days long fight. Thing is, to deal the first blow, Jack leaped higher than the Scotsman's head... So ,why didn't he just jump over him, which would have allowed them both to keep on walking towards their respective destinations ?
    • Given episode chronology, this had most likely happened before Jack learned to jump good, so he might have been afraid of accidentally missing the bridge and falling to his death (the Scotsman is not an easy fellow to jump over). Alternatively, since the behaviour of the Scotsman so far has raised some serious issues about his combat ethics, Jack might have suspected that he would pull some trick on him or just rudely dismiss the idea like he rejected his previous one.
    • The bridge didn't seem to be very resistant and some boards were easily broken during their fight.
    • Most likely a case of Honor Before Reason, especially since this scene is likely an homage to when Robin Hood first met Little John. Plus, Jack had suggested clinging to the underside of the bridge so the Scotsman could pass over, but the Scotsman shot that idea down on the grounds of he's wearing a kilt.

  • Aku's robots have shown emotions like: self preservation, sadism, fear, happiness, and a sense of humor. Yet its said in X9 episode, the titular Hit Man Witha Heart was the only to receive an emotion chip, and thus have a sense of preservation. How does this work?
    • It could be that the regular robots have pre-programmed routines to follow, whereas X9 has the freedom to choose how he feels. Aku's robots enjoy the same destruction and cruelty that Aku indulges in; they fear death just like Aku does. X9 can form attachments beyond his programming; he's willing to take on a suicide mission to save Lulu.
    • X9 is an old, outdated robot. My impression when he said he was the only robot with an emotion chip is not that he's the only one who ever had one, but he was the only one at the time. In other words, X9 was the first robot with an emotion chip.

  • How would Aku not know that Jack lost his sword? Last time I checked, Aku has 24/7 surveillance on him (with the exception of holy/sacred locations).
    • After 50 years and who knows what happened when he lost the sword Aku probably lost this ability, there might be a reason why we don't see him in person.
    • We see Aku in episode 2; he's apparently very withdrawn and even depressed over the fact that Jack hasn't died of old age by now, as was apparently his plan. It's to the point that he's decided his obsession with killing Jack is unhealthy and he's taken a very hands off approach to it, and isn't even keeping up on surveillance anymore. Apparently all efforts directed towards killing Jack are being taken without his direct instruction at this point.
    • However, he apparently is aware that Jack has grown a beard, which is somewhat strange as the flashback indicates Jack lost the sword before he grew his Beard of Sorrow. If he was watching Jack long enough to find out about the beard then he should also know about the sword.

  • Is the robot bounty hunter named Scaramouch or Scaramouche?

  • How does Scaramouche play a flute if he's a robot? Does he have lungs/ventilation valves like X-9 (a robot who can play a saxophone)?
    • He doesn't seem to be talking using a speaker so he probably can exhale in some way.
    • Also the flute was magical, the robot itself could've had some magic in it as well.

  • Why was Scaramouche unable to run away when Jack was slowly walking over to him with the scimitar? Was it due to his sense of pride or was he too injured to get away?
    • He was probably too damaged to get away quickly.

  • According the season synopsis, apparently all of the time portals and artifacts that could return Jack to his original time are destroyed, but what about the Time Portal which is defended by the Guardian in episode XXXII? Surely the portal would still be intact?
    • Yes, kept by the Guardian and Jack doesn't have his sword anymore. So it's not something that could return him if he has to fight an unwinnable battle.
    • It's entirely possible that Aku killed the Guardian. Jack being able to beat Aku and not being able to beat the Guardian doesn't equate to the Guardian being able to defeat Aku. We've got no reason to believe that any weapon that the Guardian possesses is capable of harming Aku the way Jack's sword can, and without that, it doesn't matter how strong and skilled and tough the Guardian is, he can't beat Aku.
    • Or Jack just thinks that portal was destroyed. He probably got ground down after 50 years of searching for a usable portal and just assumed there weren't any left.
    • Also keep in mind in that episode Aku never once made any attempts on that portal. It could be he either doesn't know it exists or he figured it was a moot point. Aku never was the most reliable info source after all.
    • It's possible that portal is still open and operational, I'll grant you, but we have no particular reason to believe it is, either. With both Jack and Aku claiming that every time portal has been destroyed, I'd think the implication is for us to believe them. Jack seems certain to the point that I would believe he's checked. And Aku not being featured in that particular episode doesn't necessarily mean anything; there were several episodes that didn't feature Aku because he wasn't source of the conflict in every given episode. That doesn't equate to him not being aware of that episode as we also don't have any indication that his ability to remotely view Jack was being disrupted during that episode.
    • There's every chance Aku missed a few. Evil and powerful as he might be, he's been shown time and time again to not be omnipotent and is prone to the same errors as anyone else. He hasn't even realised that Jack's sword is gone for crying out loud. However, even if all the time portals are destroyed that doesn't necessarily mean they are gone forever. In The Aku Infection, the lizard monk tells Jack that while the portal of the episode was destroyed, the nexus still exists and in time it could be rebuilt. Of course the same may not be the case for all the time portals, but it's a possibility. Since Jack essentially has all the time he wants (and has already gone through 50 years of it), there should be some time portals that have been rebuilt/remade by now.

  • Why does Jack wear such a tall helmet in Season 5? Wouldn't that make him a bigger target?
    • It doesn't really matter much, Jack's a One-Man Army. Besides, the big helmet/mask serves a dual purpose: protecting his head and concealing his face (identity).

  • Aku has his floors vacuumed? Couldn't he just use his eye beams to instantly clean them?
    • Well he is acting like an Orcus on His Throne. Why do menial tasks like cleaning when you have minions to do that for you?
    • Even a God of Evil likes to keep a tidy lair.

  • How did the Daughters of Aku locate and identify Jack so easily?
    • Scarily Competent Tracker is a thing. If I had to guess, they tracked down rumours about "the Samurai" saving that village in the first scene of episode one and followed the trail off his bike until they found him.

  • Regarding the killing of one of the Daughters; Hasn't Jack killed people before? It was never particularly explicit, granted, but I'm sure there were a couple episodes in the original series where he definitely killed bounty hunters who weren't robots.
    • Perhaps Jack is more shaken by the fact he had actually killed a young woman. In Episode 44, he did fight Princess Mira, but he spared her and wiped out the rest of the bounty hunters.
    • Up until recently Jack's magic sword was determining who was innocent and who was evil with absolute magical certainty, he's in a very delicate mental state with his own subconscious pushing him towards suicide and regular vivid hallucinations brought on by some pretty severe combat for fifty straight years, and as mentioned above unless they proved to be irredeemably evil he's always had something of a soft spot for women in general. This and his little Madness Mantra of how Aku's machines couldn't beat him because they were "just nuts and bolts" has just been completely blown out of the water.
    • According to this interview with Genndy Tartakovsky, the bounty hunters survived or weren't fully human. He admits he completely forgot the episode, though.

  • After being recognized and referred to by name in Season 5, I wondered... how often has Jack been referred to explicitly by others as "Jack" without him offering the name himself? Rather than just "The Samurai"?
    • I recall kids calling him that in an episode where he broke his shoes, granted he was singing the intro song too.
      • Yes, his reputation precedes him to not just kids, but a whole Japanese family in "Jack's Sandals", episode 26, and technically a group of robo-bikers ran over his footwear while he soaked his tired feet in a lake- Jack only wrecked up the shoes that a generous salesman was trying to replace them with.

  • In Episode XCIV, Jack plummets to the ground, and he's barehanded. So why does he suddenly have a spear when he wakes up in episode XCV?
    • He started off by fighting the Daughters of Aku with several wooden spears in the previous episode, and had who knows how many spares on hand hidden in the snow for surprise ambushes. He also dropped at least one out in the open in the fight, at which point, he started using the Daughters' own weapons against them and made no attempt to go back for the spear as the fight escalated to the treetops. He was probably lucky enough to fall where he could retrieve one.
    • Because he never actually had a spear in the first place, notice how the spear disappears when he yells at the crows, along with Ashi's body, and the blood trail? It's a subtle way of showing his fragile mental state.

  • Why the hell did the Scotsman and his army of rebels think it was even remotely a good idea to directly attack Aku himself? Not only is it common knowledge that Aku is virtually indestructible and can only be hurt by one weapon they don't have, but the Scotsman got 99% of his troops (including himself) massacred while achieving nothing even close to resembling a victory. This could only be chalked up to the Scotsman's fearless bravery getting combined with senile stupidity.
    • Aku hasn't been seen nor heard from in over fifty years, and the Scotsman assumed (correctly) that he was too afraid of Jack to be proactive anymore. Given the Scotsman's usual temperament, waiting fifty whole years to overthrow a cowardly, apathetic demon was showing phenomenal restraint on his part.
    • Also, while Jack's sword may be the only thing capable of killing Aku, there wasn't any proof that other weapons wouldn't at least hurt. He may have wrongly assumed that enough firepower would affect Aku like pepper spray or a taser; painful enough to utterly ruin someones's day, but short of death.
    • More from a practical standpoint, they would be able to take care of Aku's mooks while distracting Aku himself. The Scotsman never really directly fought Aku (to my knowledge), and had likely assumed that his own magic sword would be capable of harming Aku (as many fans had also assumed). Basically, as long as they were not holding him back it was better to have them there than to leave them to twiddle their thumbs at home.
  • How the hell did Aku have sex with the High Priestess without killing her? He is literally made of evil, oil and is practically a tree. Any reproductive fluid he has should be toxic as hell (to humans at least). Then again, this is a woman who walked off giving birth to seven kids one by one.
    • It's just a name, she probably had septuplets with some random guy and said they were Daughters of Aku. She probably doesn't even want to meet Aku, giving it kind of kills her whole dark cult when the guy complains like an old man.
    • Why the hell does anyone still think that "Daughters of Aku" is a literal name, when it is totally metaphorical? The very first episode of the season already established that they're just ordinary humans without any superpowers. If they really were Aku's offspring, they would look demonic and inhuman.
    • Well for one, The High Priestess has never mentioned anyone else being their father, leaving Aku the only potential patriarch. Second, The High Priestess at one point says "You will again honor us with your presence", which heavily implies Aku dropped by at one point and had his way with her.
      • No. That statement only implies that they've been waiting a long time to have an audience with their god, not a sexual encounter. As stated before, the "Daughters of Aku" is not only a figurative title, but they're normal humans, with no evidence of unholy hybridization.
      • While we have no idea who their father is, another (far more likely) theory is that they're somehow the offspring of Samurai Jack. Which is a potential (if cliched) plot twist that they could possibly reveal.
      • Jack is a potential father. The High Priestess could have seduced him; he is a normal man, albeit an extraordinary one, and a very lonely man, so for a beautiful woman to seduce him over the course of a few days is hardly impossible, or even far-fetched. Why would she do such a thing? Because she believes that only children of his get could become great enough to kill him. Judging by how much closer they came to killing him than anyone else, this belief would seem to be true.
      • It's also possible that we won't find out who their father is because he's irrelevant to the story, if he isn't Jack.

  • Apparently, Ashi and her sisters weren't wearing black jumpsuits (or any clothes for that matter), but had their skin covered in burning hot charcoal. So.... Why don't Jack, the Dominator, or anyone Ashi met in Episode XCVII notice she's completely naked the whole time?
    • Also, since Ashi and her sisters covered themselves neck-to-toe in hot ash and charcoal so deep into their skin that Ashi had to remove it with a rock, wouldn't they eventually die from skin suffocation? Yes it's a real thing look it up.
      • That's a myth and they should be more worried about potential overheating.
    • Also why is her body not covered in scars or marked in some way? When she scrubs the ash off, her skin looks perfectly unblemished. The only logical explanation is that burning coal had magical properties.
    • I think it was tar (or a supernatural tar-like substance) and she was screaming more from the horror of the situation rather than burning. My guess is they boiled the tar to liquid and then let it cool off to a steaming sticky solid. Tar would stick to/stain the skin semi-permanently and dry so it doesn't wipe off. (Though her skin should be raw and red from scraping it off) And I like to think after the first go around the head priestess realized she hadn't fully thought this through and let them wear tiny black g-strings the next time.
  • Who is that character who helps Ashi find the graveyard where Jack is preparing to commit seppuku? Is it Kuni (the girl from the Haunted House episode)?
    • That seems the most likely to me, but I've seen people make a bunch of different guesses.

  • Why are Scaramouch's eyes white in episode XCVII? (They were originally blue in XCII.)
    • Dude got de-bod-ified, as he'd probably say. I think enough serious freaking damage was done to him that something shifting color isn't too far fetched? (That said, it could be a 'low power mode' or something.)

  • Does Jack know Ashi's name?

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