WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Episode 3 of SSSS.Dynazenon, "What is a Traitor?," now streaming on Funimation.
Fans of SSSS.Dynazenon are trying to work out how the series connects to SSSS.Gridman. The new series uses similar backgrounds and designs to the previous one, but it is still unclear if whether the show is foreshadowing or recycling. However, Episode 3 features a lot of callbacks to another Gridman show.
Rather than SSSS.Gridman, it actually calls back to 1993's live-action tokusatsu show Denkou Choujin Gridman. The final episode of SSSS.Gridman revealed that the show was set in the same universe as the original show, thanks to the appearance of Electron Animal Anosillus, a monster from the original Gridman. Episode 3 of SSSS.Dynazenon took this further by featuring many direct callbacks to the 18th episode of Denkou Choujin Gridman called "The Legend of Dragon."
This episode revolved around a 5000-year-old Chinese Mummy on display at a museum. This mummy was part of a myth about a man who could control dragons. The man used these dragons to protect both his country and the princess he loved. However, the princess' family was scared of the man and his power, so they betrayed and poisoned him. The princess, distraught by the loss of her love, filled the coffin with grave goods and then killed herself. The villains of Denkou Choujin Gridman, Takeshi and Kahn Digifer (who have a relationship similar to the one Akane and Alexis had in SSSS.Gridman) decide to use this grudge to their advantage and resurrect the mummy while sending another monster to attack the digital world.
The newly awakened mummy causes chaos in the museum, but things get complex when he mistakes Yuka, a member of team Gridman, for his princess and tries to kidnap her. Thankfully, Gridman destroys the second monster with the newly created Dragon Cannon weapon and, when this monster is destroyed, the mummy returns to rest.
Interestingly SSSS.Dynazenon's Gauma wears bandages around his wrists and across his chest, something that seems a little too weird to just be a fashion statement, especially as these bandages are yellowed like mummy bandages. At first, this may seem like a coincidence, but the episode featured several more allusions to this Gridman episode.
During this episode, Juuga, one of the Kaiju Eugenicists, meets Yomogi and talks a little about the group's relationship with Gauma. Juuga explains that Gauma used to be a Kaiju Eugenicist and one that Juuga personally looked up to. However, Juuga says that Gauma betrayed them 5000 years previously. Which seems far too specific of a number to not be a direct callback to the Gridman episode.
Much like the original Gridman episode, this Dynazenon episode features a theme of resurrection. During a conversation, Gauma reveals that he died 5000 years ago. Gauma also explains that he is trying to find the woman who entrusted Dynazenon to him. Meaning he is a lot like the mummy from the Gridman episode, as its first action upon being resurrected was to search for the princess. On top of this, Yume wonders if kaiju could bring people back from the dead before a Kaiju Eugenicist comes back to life after being crushed. However, the Kaiju Eugenicist seems confused by his sudden and unexplained resurrection.
Finally, one of the most overt references has been sitting in plain sight since the series started. The dragon ornament used to summon Dynazenon is near identical to one of the dragons among the mummy's grave goods. In fact, in the Gridman episode, Yuka tries to calm the mummy by giving it the dragon. She also lays it on the body once the mummy returns to rest.
We'll have to wait to find out if these references mean that Gauma is actually linked to the mummy from Gridman or if this is merely a thematic allusion that hints towards the plot's general direction. But, as SSSS.Dynazenon progresses, it seems that we can look forward to more references to both SSSS.Gridman and the original Denkou Choujin Gridman. And if this series directly links to the original Gridman, Yomogi and his friends should look out for some powerful monsters.