I was a big fan of Ultraman when I was a kid. In the early ‘90s I discovered there was a new “Ultraman” show, but unfortunately I was more interested in acquiring episodes of the old show on VHS than I was episodes of the new one. Somewhat later I discovered that there have been many, many “Ultraman” series over the years, rivaling Doctor Who in its longevity. A brief search of the internet yields the following results (but I’ve probably missed a few).

Ultra-Man 1966-67
Ultra-Seven 1967-68
Ultra Fight 1970-71
Return of… 1971-72
Ultraman Ace 1972-73
Ultraman Taro 1973-74
Ultraman Leo 1974-75
Ultraman 80 1980-81
Ultimate Hero 1995
Ultraman Tiga 1996-97
Ultraman Dyna 1997-98
Ultraman Gaia 1998-99
Ultraman Cosmos 2001-02
Ultraman Nexus 2004-05
Ultraman Max 2005-06
Ultraman Mebius 2006-07

Ultra Galaxy Mega Monster 2007-08
Ultraman Retsuden 2011+

We’ve been discussing other tokusatsu series in this forum lately, and because those series were produced later than Ultraman, I expected them to be technically better, but I ended up being somewhat disappointed in Super Robot Red Baron and Iron King. I enjoyed them, but I didn’t like them as much as I hoped to. Now I’ve started watching Ultraseven, and it’s everything I hoped it would be.

As the liner noteson the DVD set point out, “the difference in the overall quality in production between Ultraman and Ultraseven was marked, and made the show memorable 45 years later. According to Wikipedia, “Such is his popularity that Ultra Seven (or simply 'Seven') has appeared or at least made cameos in nearly every Ultra Series following his own and has had far more exposure than even the original Ultraman (though the original Ultraman is without a doubt the face of the Ultras).”

My wife and I disagree about the relative merits of Ultraseven in comparison to SRRB/IK. I would like to start the discussion with a look at the opening title sequence and music, then open the floor for rebutal.

The title sequence of Ultraman, as you will recall, looks as if it had been spelled out in a can of paint, slowly stirred, then run backwards. Ultraseven looks more like it had been spelled out in brightly colored confetti, placed atop one of those old electric football games, shaken apart, then run backwards. Whereas the soundtrack of Ultraman is jazzy, that of Ultraseven shows more of a classical influence.

Here is the English translation of the lyrics…

Seven… Seven… Seven… Seven…

Seven! Seven! Seven!
Seven! Seven! Seven!

A distant star was once his home
Ultra Seven! Fighter Seven!
Ultra Seven! Seven! Seven!

Onward to the edge of the galaxy
Use your Ultra-Eye and… STRIKE!
Seven! Seven! Seven!
Seven! Seven! Seven!

Dan Moroboshi is his borrowed name
Ultra Seven! Hero Seven!
Ultra Seven! Seven! Seven!

Defeat the great fire-breathing monster
Use yout Ultra-Beam and STRIKE!

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"kun" is an honorific typically used between men of equal or lesser rank, i.e., you would use it on an equal or a subordinate, but it would be disrespectful to use it on a superior.  

You may also get women using it for effect. 

The Baron said:

"kun" is an honorific typically used between men of equal or lesser rank, i.e., you would use it on an equal or a subordinate, but it would be disrespectful to use it on a superior.  

"You may also get women using it for effect."

I'm sure that's the case with Moa. I thought of it as everyone else calling him "Rick," and her calling him "Ricky" (or something like that).

The movie was my favorite episode of "Geed" and led to my personal discovery of a favorite Ultraman. Orb. My favorite is Ultraman Orb. As soon as Gai appeared, I paid closer attention. When his theme song played, I was tapping my toes. 



Apparently, the way to bring others to the geekdom is saturation.

ULTRAMAN JACK (Urutoraman Jakku):

Return of Ultraman is the third in the series (fourth if you count Ultra Q) of “Ultraman TV shows. The initial idea was to make a direct sequel to the original Ultraman, set decades later. Ultraman would have returned to Earth to combat a new wave of monsters and alien invaders. Shin Hayata, now retiired from the Science Special Search Party would entrust the Beta Capsule t a new human host. But TBS (the Tokyo Broadcasting System) and their sponsors requested an all-new Ultraman that could be marketed and merchandised.

That led to “New Ultraman” who merged his lifeforce with Hideki Go, a young racecar driver who died while saving a boy and his dog from a monster attack. Go then goes on to join MAT, the Monster Attack Team. (New Ultraman was not given the name :Ultraman Jack” until a contest in 1984.) The basic premise is the same as Ultraman and Ultra Seven, yet is as different from Ultra Seven as Ultra Seven is from Ultraman. Notably, whereas Hayata was a human whose life outside the SSSP was never shown, and Dan Moroboshi was a creation of Ultra-Seven, Hideki Go is an everyman with a life, a girlfriend and friends separate from the MAT and Ultraman. He doesn’t need a Beta capsule of glasses to transform; he simply wills it. But sometimes Ultraman Jack doesn’t respond if he thinks Jack is using the power unwisely.

This series has 51 episodes, so I don’t know if I’ll be posting about them all. But I do know in advance that this series will feature quest appearances by the original Ultraman and Ultra Seven (along with their human identities), presenting the very first team-up of Ultras. Prior to this series, the other shows were separate, but Return of Ultraman introduces the concept of a shared universe.

I can;t find the actual opening credits, but here is the theme song.

You, too, see it...the Ultra Star

Far away from the earth alone

On a mission to destroy monsters

After burning a city a little later

Listen to that roaring cry

He has returned, he has returned

Ultraman

The enemies aiming at the crosses

Are gifted with finishing blows

A Meteor Punch flying over the ground

An Ultra Chop for standing close

To defeat the heinous monsters

He has returned, he has returned

Ultraman

A monster collapsed in flames

The morning comes after the fight

That shining star from far away

That is, that is, his hometown

To protect justice and peace

He has returned, he has returned

Ultraman

I'm not looking forward to 51 episodes of this. I am looking forward to seeing multiple Ultras.

Come on, now, you made it through all nine billion episodes of P:CBH!

Tracy of Moon-T said:

I'm not looking forward to 51 episodes of this. I am looking forward to seeing multiple Ultras.
I also made it through the horror of MH, MH, but you know I complained about it the whole time.

...and still complains to this day (see above for case in point).

Unlike Ultra-Seven, Return of Ultraman features combat over social commentary. Many fans consider the show to be the peak of the franchise’s success with regard to kaiju, featuring new versions of classic monsters alongside all new ones. The first episode, for example, features Takkong (the oil monster) as well as Zazarn (the sludge monster).

Below is Takkong (which Tracy dubbed “Squidball”).

I will endeavor to dub more of the monsters similarly. "Squidball" is just the first.

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