The Swamp of Sadness (悲しみの沼 Kanashimi no Numa) is episode 39 of Ultraman Gaia.
An old experiment by the government to turn people into deadly bio-weapons comes back to cause trouble for Gamu.
Two robbers, hide out in an old abandon shack in the Ren Village swamp next to the water. However, in the middle of the night they hear a melody playing, and fear someone will find them. The two crooks find and an old man, named Harino, playing a music box for some one he calls Kondo. Undaunted, the two crooks confront the man and prepare to kill him, despite his warning that should leave. Before the old man could be hurt, strange tentacles shoot out from the swamp waters, and drag the robbers beneath the surface to their deaths. Harion then attempted to sink the robbers stolen money.
The next morning, Gamu Takayama of XIG arrived at Ren Village to investigate the swamp's level of pollution. He was joined by two detectives who were searching for the robbers, believing them to be hiding in the swamp due to a legend of a yokai called Tsuchikera living in the swamp, keeping the locals out of the swamp. They find Hirano over looking the swamp, and question him if he had seen the robbers. Hirano denies knowing anything about the two missing men, and demand that they three men leave the swamp. However Gamu discovers that the swamps water has high radiation levels, and the detectives notice the robbers' money floating over the swamp's surface. The detectives try to arrest Hirano to question him further, but the strange tentacles, of Tsuchikera, return and attack the detectives. Hirano manages to save the men by playing his music box which seems to calm the tentacles.
XIG's Team Falcon and hazard team are sent over to the swamp to destroy Tsuchikera. However Gamu remembered how Hirano refereed to Tsuchikera as Kondo, and asks him to explain the monster's history before XIG would be forced to exterminate it. Hirano resent to Gamu referring to the creature as a monster, and insists that he is his friend. Hirano tells Gamu that both him and Kondo were once part of Japan's Military Research Unit during the Pacific War. Together they made many discoveries and hoped that their research would end the war and return peace to Japan.
However, the Research Unit accidentally created an artificial bacteria, which had the ability to mutate humans into bio weapons. Kondo was very against the use of the artificial bacteria, but the Unite's superior officers were in favor of using the bacteria. And because of Kondo's defiance, it was order that he would be the first test subject. Hirano was unable to save his friend and witnessed his horrible mutation. Kondo broke free and killed every one of the research Unit members, except for Hirano, before destroying all of the research.
Kondo then retreated into the swamps, were Hirano followed him. Kondo was a single father of a young girl named Chei, who Hirano made sure Kondo was able to see after his personal exile, by taking her to the swamp to play together, while Kondo would watch them from the swamp's water. However the young Chei died in an air raid, leaving Kondo with nothing, and due to his mutation, he was unable to commit suicide. Since Chei's death, Hirano vowed he would stay and watch over Kondo until his own death.
After Hirano finishes Kondo's story, Gamu realizes that Hirano had spread the rumor of the yokai Tsuchikera, to keep Kondo safe and in peace. Gamu then receives a transmission from Atsuko Sasaki and Georgie Leland at XIG's Aerial Base, they found that the swamps are polluted with a toxin from underground. Hirano then notes the Kondo has been acting more violent then usual, Gamu then realizes the toxin is an after effect from XIG's Ground Penetration Missile and that it is poisoning Kondo's mind.
Tsuchikera then grows to a giant size after absorbing so much of the Ground Penetration Missile's toxin. Team Falcon then begins to evacuate the area, while Gamu transforms into Ultraman Gaia. As Team Falcon try to evacuate Hirano from the two giants' fight, the old man breaks away from them to go play Chei's music box again to Kondo. As soon as Kondo hears the music, he stops fighting Gaia to look towards the sky and begins to weep. However, the toxins in Kondo's mutants body begin to take their toll on him causing him to bleed through his head. Tsuchikera then loses all his senses and almost kills Hirano, then he attacks Gaia. However seeing the man's pain, Gaia turned into his SV form and uses a more powerful version of his Calmer Ray, allowing Kondo to regain his senses and finally pass on to the after life. Before ascending, Kondo thanks Hirano for always staying with him, and that because of his friendship he was able to keep his heart.
- Ultraman Gaia
- Version 2
- Supreme Version
- Tsuchikera (First and only appearance)
- Ultraman Gaia Volume 10 Features Episodes 37-40.