Note: The disks I have are in Japanese, without dubbing or subtitles. I only know about twenty or so words of Japanese, although many of those are words that are likely to occur in tokusatsu. The challenge I am setting myself is to see whether I can follow what's going on in these without knowing what's being said.
We start with what my disk set calls an "Intro Movie", although it's only about 25 minutes long.
Our Hero, who seems to be called "Yamashiro", is having a nap, and has a bad dream about being stuck in room. He hears a cry for help ("Tasukete!") and rescues his sister (Well, she calls him " oneechan", so I'm assuming she's his sister) and a kid (Nephew? Kid Brother?) from a gang of thugs dressed like Grey Bird-People (GBP). He switches to Spider-Man and fights them, but they literally vanish.
He is observed by Internal Dialogue Mustache Man (IDMM). Yamashiro gets a disturbing phone call, and then we see Spidey doing a lot of climbing. (Seriously, there are tons of climbing shots in this. Plus, the camera has a tendency to linger lovingly on Spidey's butt.) He breaks into a room, and IDMM is there. I believe IDMM is a cop - at least, he says "Interpol" alot. IDMM shows him footage of kids and young women at a pool. (I think IDMM knows Spidey's ID.) He also shows him footage of Fish-Headed Guy (FHG) firing torpedoes at a ship. I assume that IDMM has successfully recruited Spidey, as we see them shake hands. Spidey battles some GBPs, but it's a distraction as IDMM is kidnapped! Mystey Woman With Hat (MWWH) observes. Spidey finds a note stuck to a wall, which I assume is a ransom or a threat.
Now I want to hear the theme from the 1967 cartoon show sung in Japanese!
Remember Henry? He once sent me a couple of Ds of soundtrack music from that show, including a version of the theme song sung in French.
Here is a link to where I found the lyrics. It's also an interesting look at the Toei seriers overall:
At the bottom of that site, in the comments section, someone posted a link to an episode guide that's supposed to be in Japanese and English. I can access the site (by copying the link to my browser), but it's only in Japanese. If anyone reading this knows how to change to English, please post the secret here.
Here's the link.
I looked at the site you linked to. The parts that are in English are more "Engrish".
Here's a somewhat limited Episode Guide.
I'll let you know if I find a more detailed one.
Episode 12: I found this one a little harder to follow than most. As near as I can tell, a college kid is being set up in such a way as to convince the general public that he is Spider-Man, possibly as part of a plot by Professor Monster and Amazoness. There's one interesting scene where Spidey slips on the side of a building that happened to be wet. Did that ever happen to Peter Parker. The monster in this one looks like a sort of giant half-melted candy bar. He is dealt with in the usual way. There's a number of scenes in this with Takuya eating. I guess being Spider-Man gives you a hearty appetite. There's another good scene where the heels hijack a prison bus only to find that Spidey has already snuck on-board. In the end, Fake Spidey is reconciled with his girlfriend.
Overall: OK, I guess, as far as I could follow it.
“I found this one a little harder to follow than most.”
Your interpretation jibes with mine.
“There's one interesting scene where Spidey slips on the side of a building that happened to be wet.”
Was that water or was it oil? I thought it was a trap. My favorite scene was when the bad guys were running down the outside spiral staircase and Spider-Man was pacing them wall-crawling down the bars encircling it. There’s no way they wouldn’t have been able to see him, but it made a good action scene.
“Did that ever happen to Peter Parker?”
I think there have been surfaces he couldn’t stick to from time-to-time, but I can’t think of any specifically offhand.
“The monster in this one looks like a sort of giant half-melted candy bar.”
Yeah, that’s a pretty good description. (Better than what I was going to say.)
“He is dealt with in the usual way.”
That’s really getting old. Villain grows to giant size; Spidey summons Marveler; Marvel transforms to Leopardon; Leopardon throws sword, defeats foe; battle over.
Yeah, you'd think there'd be one of them who'd think, "Screw it, I'm ducking when he throws the sword!"
Episode 13: We see two groups of kids fighting. One group is wearing Badges for Mathematical Excellence (BME), the other kids have balloons. Amazoness sends a gang of hardhats to lock up the balloon kids. She then poses as a cop and threatens the locals. The BME kids provoke the heel into chasing them. Elsewhere, we see Tak watching Hitomi take photos. They then go into a cafe owned by Japanese Mister French. (JMF) The BME kids pester Tak while he's eating. (I gather Tak is something of a celebrity even in his civilian ID) There is an earthquake which magnetizes the clock. JMF is angered and throws them out. Tak's bike won't start, and Hitomi takes off in a huff. The BME kids prank him.
Later, Spidey watches as Hitomi and Shinko walk. He spies on old people, and startles JMF. There is another earthquake. The BME kids encounter some GBPs. Spidey comes to the rescue, and apparently deputizes the BME kids. Elsehwere, Professor Monster has invented the cake dish. Amazoness looks bored. ("God, why did I swear myself to the service of this guy? He's so dull!") The BME kids rat their parents out to Spidey. He leaps alot, then infiltrates a GBP base. Amazoness laughs at the captive Balloon kids. Spidey frees them while she is using the cake dish to deliver a vital component to a sort of Tricked-Out Mechonoid (TOM). Amazoness send TOM after Spidey. TOM catches him, Spidey frees himself and TOM turns into Catfish With Legs Man (I s*** you not.) As a side note, popular myth in Japan says that earthquakes are caused by a giant catfish. CWLM is the goofiest monster yet. Spidey sends the Balloon kids home, then summons GP-7 and fights CWLM, CWLM grows giant, Marveller, Leopardon, Sword of Vigor, blah-blah-blah...We end with the BME kids and the Balloon kids joining forces as Spidey looks on.
Overall: An OK episode. CWLM's legs are...disturbing somehow.
I enjoyed this episode a bit more than you did because I equated it to a Joe Simon/Jack Kirby “kid gang” set-up, specifically the guardian and the Newsboy Legion. I suspect that the BME kids are the “Boy’s Detective Group” mentioned in three of the episode titles. Specifically, I think this one is “The First Tin Plate Evening Star and the Boys’ Detective Group” based on the fact that Spidey himself is apparently made an honorary member, sporting a BME of his own in the final scene.
“The BME kids pester Tak while he's eating. (I gather Tak is something of a celebrity even in his civilian ID) “
I think, like the Newsboy Legion and beat cop Jim Harper, the Boy’s Detective Group suspects that Tak is really Spider-Man. They just can’t prove it. While they were pestering him, one of the kids rolled up Tak’s sleeve in an attempt (I believe) to reveal the Spider-bracelet. (Unfortunately, he rolled up the wrong sleeve. Some boy detective!
“Japanese Mister French” was great. The beret was a nice touch.
“Tak's bike won't start, and Hitomi takes off in a huff.”
They were doing so well up until that point. Then she reverted to b*tch mode.
The “Tricked-Out Mechonoid” reminded me of every Doctor Who robot from the early years that was not a Dalek. Specifically, it reminded me of an evil “Chumbly” posessed by the devil.
“As a side note, popular myth in Japan says that earthquakes are caused by a giant catfish.”
I did not know that!
“[Catfish With Legs Man] is the goofiest monster yet. “
I rank him second behind Mushroom Guy, but that's the episode that would not play for you.
Thanks again for holding up to accommodate my schedule.
That could be, but I seem to remember seeing somewhere that Tak was supposed to be a motocross champion or something, which might qualify as a celebrity.
Oh, yes... that's true, too.