News Stay At Home With ULTRAMAN| Ultra Science Fiction Hour on YouTube

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Kai "the spy", May 1, 2020.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I'm reminded of the progression of Godzilla universes. The original Showa kaiju films were originally self-contained (numerous different ones treated their giant monsters as unprecedented) but eventually knitted into a loose shared continuity through return appearances and team-ups of the various monsters, so that everything from 1954-75 was essentially one universe. Then in 1984 they did a gritty, mature reboot that ignored everything but the original film, and over the next decade they made a total of seven films in a single continuity with recurring characters and eventually a recurring organization (and after that they did a separate trilogy of Mothra films in a different, Godzilla-less continuity). Then from 1999-2004 they did six films that were set in five different continuities (though all included the '54 original), but the last three (the last two universes) partially reintegrated elements of Showa continuity. Although the analogy breaks down there, since they never fully returned to Showa, and indeed the past decade has brought us two new Godzilla universes (three if you count the Legendary Monsterverse) that completely ignore everything that came before, even the original film.

    And don't get me started on Kamen Rider/Super Sentai "continuity."
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
  2. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    So the Rebirth of Mothra movies aren't set in the Godzilla universe? I've been thinking about checking out once I get a chance, and I had just assumed they were since they came out right in the middle of the Heisei series.
     
  3. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    No, Rebirth of Mothra is separate from the Heisei Godzilla continuity or any other Godzilla universe. It features its own distinct version of Mothra and her backstory, and in place of the miniature twin heralds known as the Shobijin (Showa/Millennium) or Cosmos (Heisei), it has three non-identical sisters (two good, one evil) belonging to a tiny race called the Elias. It does feature two monsters that are variants of King Ghidorah, but no other monsters in common with the Godzilla franchise. It was aimed more at children than the Heisei or Millennium Godzilla films were.
     
  4. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Oh, I see now, thanks.:bolian:
    Mothra is one of my favorite Kaiju, but I somehow managed to overlook those when I was going through the Heisei and Millenium movies years ago.
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Yeah, they're probably not as well-known. And they weren't that good, especially the second one.
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Missed this before... Heisei Godzilla ended in 1994 and the Rebirth of Mothra trilogy was 1996-8, between the Heisei and Millennium series. Toho had suspended doing more Godzilla series at the time, since attendance and profits were falling. Their plan was to hold off for a decade while TriStar made an American Godzilla trilogy, then come back with a new series for the 50th anniversary in 2004. But the '98 TriStar film flopped and any sequel hopes were abandoned, so Toho rushed the Millennium films into production 5 years ahead of schedule.
     
  7. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Oh, I don't know where I got the idea they came out earlier.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I hadn't realized the captain on the first Ultraman was the same actor who would later play Tobei Tachibana, mentor to the first several Kamen Riders. That was a nice surprise.

    This was a weird one, with the annoying friendly monster. But it was interesting to see one of the main characters voice a thought I've had from time to time, that Ultraman always beating the monsters makes the human military team seem kind of useless. Although I guess the human team does contribute to the victory in a number of the Heisei-era episodes I've seen, e.g. devising some means to negate a kaiju's advantage or defense so that Ultraman can blow it up, or figuring out the right tactic (or realizing the monster is innocent and should be spared) and yelling it at Ultraman.

    I think I'm starting to get tired of the sameness of the formula, the protagonists always being members of an armed defense force. Kamen Rider and Super Sentai manage to come up with a wider variety of identities and civilian roles for their protagonists. Like, the last five Kamen Rider leads have been a ghost hunter, a doctor, a genius scientist, a high school student, and a failed stand-up comic turned corporate executive.
     
  9. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Look, behind you!
    If it's variety from that formula you seek, may I suggest Ultraman Nexus, UltraSeven X, and Ultraman Ginga. I've discussed Nexus and its variation from the formula before.

    UltraSeven X has the secret identity of the Ultra being a man with amnesia working as an agent of a MiB-like secret organization in a dystopian alternate universe with a conspiracy serialized plot.

    And Ultraman Ginga is set in another alternate universe where Ultras and monsters have not existed before, and the characters are more ordinary young people. The sequel series Ginga S went back to having a toy-etic anti-monster team, though.

    But there also were the two seasons of Ultra Galaxy Mega Monster Battle, which are space adventures of the crew of a small freighter, one of who has a device allowing him to call upon and control several kaijus (this show was an adaptation of a popular trading card game using the Ultra Kaijus).

    And, of course, there are Ultra Q and its revivals Ultra Q: Dark Fantasy and Neo Ultra Q, which aren't superhero shows at all, but follow reporters and scientists investigating paranormal events, most of which turn out to involve giant monsters. These shows are more in tune of the Toho kaiju and horror films.
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    That actually sounds kind of interesting.
     
  11. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    I heard that it’s basically the Japanese version of “The Twilight Zone/ Outer limits.It’s in the vein of those kinds of show

    It was before Ultraman was created. It’s got a lot of experimental filming techniques and reused Godzilla monster costumes

    This looks like a series you can discuss in film class.

    The history of Japanese kaiju or something like that

     
    Kai "the spy" likes this.
  12. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Look, behind you!
    ^Huh. Even I learned something from that video. I had never heard about the backstory of the title based on the Olympics.

    The next episode is listed, it's episode #15 of "Ultraman Max", the 2005 show that followed the darker "Nexus" and had a more fun-oriented spirit:

    Episode #15 is titled "Miracle of the Third Planet" and features a rebooted version of the classic (and very weird) kaiju IF, which follows the physical law of every action having an equal reaction. One of my personal favorite episodes of the Ultra Series, so I highly recommend it.
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    That's odd to hear, because this one was incredibly dark. Okay, the ending was kind of nice, but things got downright cataclysmic before it got there.

    And it was so unnecessary, because it required the characters to be idiots. "Hmm, there's a totally inert, harmless object here. Let's blow it up!" "Oops, it turned into a monster that duplicates every weapon we shoot it with. What should we do?" "Shoot it with more kinds of weapon!" And in the grand tradition of the worst Gamera movies, a whole organization of skilled adults is unable to think of the obvious solution that a child can figure out.
     
  14. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Look, behind you!
    Sorry, that comment was about the series as a whole, which was probably not the best choice to introduce the episode. That was one of the darker episodes. It was preceded by a two-part remake of a classic UltraSeven adventure, and followed by an outright comedy.

    I have to disagree with you there. When they first tried to blow IF up, they didn't know it was alive, all they had was a gigantic obstacle in the landscape in a populated area. Yes, they probably should have studied it more, but if you want to measure that for realism, there would be huge pressure from local politicians and officials to remove the unmovable object. As it's a half-hour kids' show, it makes sense not to show that.
    Once they had attacked it, it took until after the second attack before they realized the monster was mirroring their weapons, and at that point it was already moving about and attacking structures. And when Max used his specium beam, it looked like IF was destroyed for good. They could hardly foresee it re-assambling. And after the fight with Max, there weren't any further attacks.
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Yes, but once you realize it mirrors what you give it, the obvious next thing to try is to not attack it but attempt some kind of peaceful gesture. It shouldn't have taken the whole episode to see that; it was the immediately self-evident next step. If it was necessary to keep it from the buildings, then Ultraman Max could've used judo or aikido, redirected its force without attacking it.

    Just in general, too many of the UM episodes I've seen across several series have the defense teams shooting first and asking questions later. Given how often the monsters turn out to be misunderstood, you'd think they'd catch on that they should wait to confirm belligerence instead of just presuming it. Indeed, isn't that a rule of the Japan Self-Defense Force in real life? At least in the '90s Gamera trilogy, they weren't allowed to shoot first, only to retaliate if an enemy attacked first.

    Although I read that in Cosmos (the next series for me), the title Ultraman was unusually peaceful, defaulting to nonviolent options unless forced to do otherwise. If so, I might like that one.

    Anyway, I kind of feel that instead of "IF," the monster should've been called "THEN." :D
     
  16. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Look, behind you!
    Next Sunday's episode is listed. Episode #33, "Lady of the Blue Fire", from the 2006 series "Ultraman Mebius". This was the 40th anniversary show that returned to the universe of the Showa shows:
     
    The Lensman likes this.
  17. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Look, behind you!
    And the episode of Sunday, May 31, is now listed on YT:

    This is from the Ultraman Taro show, which was aimed more at younger kids with a rookie Ultraman who looked up to his older brothers. These are guest-stars in this Episode #34, "The Last Day of the Six Ultra Brothers!". But be aware, this is the second part of a two-episode story.
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Ah, I should've been able to guess that from the name, which more or less suggests "Ultraman Boy."
     
  19. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    I recognize one of the characters. He's part of meme I see.

    https://ultraseries.fandom.com/wiki/The_Return_of_Yapool

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    Ultraman Z had their press conference recently

    Tsuburaya posted a special video that was aired during the live streamed cast presentation. (which you can still watch on their Youtube channel) we get our first preview of the show's opening theme.

     
    Kai "the spy" likes this.