Another tokusatsu. Blame Jeff Pl.
Episode 01: "Secret Messenger of the Morning Wind"
1)The opening and closing themes are OK, but not particularly distinctive.
2)Our hero is Gentaro Shizuka, a "laughing daredevil" type. A skilled fighter, he is capable of Ken Kurenai style "improbable leaps". He's got a magic stick that seems to serve many of the same functions as Daredevil's billy-club. Also, he sings and plays other people's guitars. I suspect that I am going to have fun not liking him.
3)His sidekick is Goro Kishima, sent by Professor Tsushima to help Ken Gentaro. He is vaguely Gilliganesque. In times of trouble, he uses IRON SHOCK! to transform into...
4)Iron King, a giant Ultraman knock-off. Gentaro recognizes IK and says "But I wonder when Professor Tsushima completed Iron King...", which implies that IK (and also Goro?) is an artificial being. IK has an analogue to Ultraman's "color-timer" - a flashing light that indicates when his water level is low. This is important because "Iron King loses his ability to fight when he loses his bodily water." This gives him a limited time to fight, and also mean that Goro is thirsty all the time, a clue which any five year old could pick up on, but which will no doubt come as a huge shock to Gentaro when he discovers it around Episode 25. So far, IK's special moves include IRON KICK!
5)Whilst wandering in the forest, they encounter Yukiko Takamura, who is vaguely reminiscent of Miss Land O' Lakes. I'm guessing that she's either a potential love interest for Gentaro, or a shady character.
6)The chief enemies are the Shrianui Clan, who have bene plotting to conquer Japan for 2,000 years, which seems like an awful long time to have not apparently achieved all that much. There seems to be about ten of them, and they don't fight alot better then the Gargoyles or Mecha-Robos did. How they expect to conquer Japan is beyond me. They do have giant robots, which they appear to be conveniently sending out one at a time. They're not very distinctive-looking. The one is this episode is Vacu-mirah the Vacuum Robot, whose power is that it both sucks and blows, to steal a line from Bart Simpson. It is controlled by a Mecha-Robo Shiranui posing as Evil Grandma. It battles IK inconclusively, and is blown up when Gentaro hits it with its own control badge, which seems a bit of a design flaw.
7)Fun quote: "Impudently, the National Security forces have discovered us." Yeah, how dare the National Security forces discover a threat to national security!
8)Next Time: Gyro-gesu the Slicing Robot!
9)Ending scene: Gentaro laughs like the hopeless fool that he is!
Overall: So far, so good. This shows promise to be mildly amusing.
"Featuring the Monster Robot Tonga Zaurus", essentially a giant brontosaurus.
On Earth-J, Tonga Zaurus is (somehow) Dopey from LotL all grown up. Whenever it came on screen, Tracy and I both hummed his theme music (and don’t let her tell you we didn’t!).
The"bronto tank" is sufficiently goofy.
Would this not have been the greatest toy ever? Kids love things that turn into other things, but a cybernetic dinosaur that opened up and disgorged little “Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch” baby dinocycles would have been the ultimate in cool.
The fight scene between Gentaro and the POP in the club looked for a minute like it was going to breakout into a dance number.
I’m not exactly sure what was going on in the act they interrupted, but I would have paid to see it.
"Is golf that much fun?"
The only other golf game I’ve enjoyed as much is when James Bond squared off against Goldfinger on the links.
This is weird, even for a tokusatsu.
Here’s me two seconds into the action: “What? WHAT!?” This is gloriously bizarre! Here’s my explanation of how the head floats. When the POP bio-engineered it, they made the neck too long to support the head (especially with the added weight of the mouth guns), so they needed to install antigrav units. (Don’t ask me how/why it’s able to fire cannon balls from its neck.) Too bad IK can’t speak. I would have loved to hear him say, “I’m gonna rip off your head and…” Oh, never mind. Gentaro in the decapitated cyber-dinos mouth was surreal.
Just as the AI from SRRB wasn’t all that different when they were revamped, so too is the Phantom Opposition Party not all that different from the S-clan, right down to their hand-held control devices. They don’t remind me of the Punisher’s emblem, however; given the name of the organization, I see more similarities to Lee Falk’s well-known “Ghost Who Walks.”
"Gentaro, are you alright?" No, you idiot, he's just been stabbed.
In a fit of passion she stabs him in the arm?
Tonga-Zaurus is my favorite critter in this up to now.
Mine, too. Absolutely.
"Featuring the Monster Robot Jurass Don", which looks a bit like someone mated Anguirus with a chihuahua.
I think it looks like a bat’s head grafted onto an armadillo’s body. (With that huge body and tiny head it looks as if it might be the kind of creature Rob Liefeld might design.) When it sprouts it’s second head, it looks more like an armadillo crossed with a kangaroo. The girl this episode looked a little like a Japanese Susan Foreman, I thought.
We’re still an episode ahead of you. No spoiler, but I will say that the monster in episode #15 is Tracy’s favorite so far.
I hadn't made the "Dopey" connection - that's pretty funny.
"Nostril Needles" sounds like a Dick Tracy villain.
Episode 15: "Marathon monster Capri-Gon"
1)"Featuring the Monster Robot Capri-Gon" - I beleive this is the first jogging monster I've ever seen.
2)"He seems committed to interfering with our revolutionary plans." Ah, you noticed that, did you?
3)Ah, yes, "Needle Nostirls". And horn cannons.
4)Does it never occur to Gentaro to wonder where Goro goes during fights, or where IK is most of the time, or how IK knows when to show up?
5)I keep expecting to hear "Yakety Sax" during the chase scenes.
6)The scenes where they're running along in open spaces somehow makes it more obvious that it's just two guys in funny suits running across a field.
7)Goro, take your hat off at the table!
8)"I don't want you to die." Well, that makes one of you.
9)When they're running side-by-side, it looks like a scene from the weirdest love story ever.
Overall: Another fun story. You know, considering the number of these shows that were done, it must've been hard coming up with original critters each work.
Even the dialogue in this episode points out that the bad guys are inconsistently referred to as, alternately, either the Phantom Militia or the Phantom Opposition.
I beleive this is the first jogging monster I've ever seen.
The scenes where they're running along in open spaces somehow makes it more obvious that it's just two guys in funny suits running across a field.
These are the scenes that had Tracy shouting and laughing with glee.
My advice to Capri-Gon is to close its mouth when it runs. Not only will doing so reduce wind resistance, but it’ll catch fewer flies that way.
Yeah, the "They're also known as the Phantom Militia" line seemed a little "Friendly Neighborhood Exposition-Man" to me.
The Wiki says that Goro transforms into IK “by touching the medals on the sides of his funny red Turning Hat and shouting "Iron Shock!" when danger threatens.” I totally didn’t get that. Could anyone wear the hat, touch the medals and transform into IK? I don’t know, but Goro does it with such flair.
Episode 16: "Destroy Tora-Girosu!"
1)"Featuring the Monster Robot Tora-Girasu!" - a sort of bipedal stegosaur with a goofy face and a weapons system built into its back.
2)Should a giant cyber-monster be doing the "owie" dance?
3)"Has her embrace made you stupid?" No, that was a pre-existing condition.
4)So they have baguettes for supper?
5)OK, Gentaro knocked a guy out with bread. Must've been pretty stale.
6)Hey, the POP has a Mustang!
7)"I attached a magic buzzer to their car."
8)For some reason, I laughed out loud at the sight of the kid in the sack.
9)Goro's getting better at fighting.
10)Great, now Gentaro's molesting a nun. I have a sudden flash of the Ghost of Sneery-Face appearing, and shorting Gentaro's brain out.
11)And then, Goro and Gentaro have a slap-fight. I'm long past wondering why neither of these guys appears to have a girl friend.
12)"I hope you get trampled by the monster robot and die!" Then, it's unanimous.
13)IK destroys a monster by himself for once!
14)"I must say I hate you very much.:
15)Ending Scene: Our heroes bicker off into the sunset.
Overall: Actually, I found this episode pretty amusing,
“Tora-Girosu” is Japanese for “poor man’s Godzilla.” Tracy thinks it looks like a Slitheen, but I don’t see it, myself. Maybe from a certain angle.
Now that I’m looking for Goro to touch the medals on his hat, they all of a sudden change the stock transformation footage!
"Has her embrace made you stupid?" No, that was a pre-existing condition.
I was gonna say that.
OK, Gentaro knocked a guy out with bread. Must've been pretty stale.
I was gonna say that.
"I hope you get trampled by the monster robot and die!" Then, it's unanimous.
I was gonna say that.
Hey, the POP has a Mustang!
That’s a ’65 convertible, too. Sweet!
Great, now Gentaro's molesting a nun.
Not only that, but he tried to hit her in the next scene (and would have, too, if Goro hadn’t blocked him).
And then, Goro and Gentaro have a slap-fight. I'm long past wondering why neither of these guys appears to have a girl friend.
That was the gayest fight over a woman I have ever seen.
The aerial closing shot of them running on converging roads was symbolic.