Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Kai "the spy", May 1, 2020.
In episode #12 of "Mirrorman", there is a series of mysterious jewel robberies:
Episode #30 of "Ultraman Cosmos" introduces a new variant of our hero:
Masanari Nihei, who played Mitsuhiro Ide in the original Ultraman series (he was one of the SSSP members, specifically the comic relief one) has died of pneumonia at age 80
I didn't particularly care for the character, but the actor did as good a job as anyone could have with the source material, and the few times he got good material he did well with it. RIP
Nihei was a delight, a man with a truly expressive face and an infectious smile.
Before he played Ide, he appeared in Ishiro Honda's "Mothra" and "Gorath", and three episodes of "Ultra Q". He returned to the Ultra series as a voice actor for "The Ultraman", and later appeared in "Ultraman Zearth", "Ultraman Cosmos: The First Contact", and an episode of "Ultraman Max". His last appearance was a cameo in "Superior Ultraman 8 Brothers" in 2008.
In episode #31 of "Ultraman Cosmos", Chaos Header infects Musashi's old childhood robot:
Trigger #6 just ended, and I happened to start watching the livestream at just about the right time (about 6-7 minutes in) that I could jump over the commercials and titles and be just about caught up to real time by the end. Although the episode started in mid-battle for Trigger, so for a moment I wasn't sure if the stream hadn't jumped forward without me.
Decent premise, about an unstoppable killer robot that advances for an hour a day and the effort to find a way to beat it, with Ignis getting involved to help the team out, seemingly out of benevolence, but really with an ulterior motive now that he knows Kengo is Trigger. It ultimately felt a little superficial, though. In the older shows, the puzzle of how to defeat the robot would've been the whole story. Here, it's kind of rushed through so they can get around to the story-arc stuff with the recurring villains and Ignis. The problem with serialized TV is that it's too easy to fall into the trap of being so devoted to the whole that you neglect the individual parts. What started out feeling like a really massive threat ended up being just a sidebar in the latest inconclusive clash with Hudram. (Which did end in an insanely huge explosion that the pyrotechnicians clearly put a lot of work into, though it seems it would've done a staggering amount of damage to the city.)
And here is "Ultraman Trigger", episode #6:
Episode 7 of "Ultraman" was the first time a presence of Ultras on ancient Earth was hinted at, something later shows like Tiga and the current Trigger built heavily on:
In episode #13 of "Mirrorman", an international security summit trying to come up with strategies against the Invaders is an obvious target for the Invaders:
In episode #32 of "Ultraman Cosmos", a new tranquilizing weapon is planned to be tested on monsters from the sanctuary:
And this week's entry in the 55th Anniversary Campaign is episode #8 of... "Ultraman Z"?! Well, I guess it qualifies, but honestly, I've seen this one three times since it first aired about a year ago. But if you missed it or want to watch it again, here it is:
In episode #33 of "Ultraman Cosmos", a high-ranking Defense Force officer takes it upon himself to kill monsters:
Episode #7 of "Ultraman Trigger" has Ultraman Z dropping in on Trigger's universe:
Thanks for the link. I think this is the first time I've forgotten to watch it the night it aired.
So it looks like Z has a different relationship with his host, more Firestorm (both personalities sharing the body) than the usual Shazam-like relationship (the hero identity displacing the host entirely). Although Kengo's relationship with Trigger is a bit unclear, since we do see him inside the white space with Trigger's face superimposed faintly on his. So does that mean it's Kengo's personality but just in an Ultra body?
Anyway, kind of a fun episode, with a lot of humor, but a bit confusing to someone unfamiliar with Z and its characters and situations. The giant battle choreography was very clever and fun. I loved the monster picking up cars and throwing them at the Ultras. And it was an interesting idea to give the last season's Ultra the ability to henshin using the current Ultra's system, although of course they surely just did it so that they can sell an Ultraman Z Original key along with the Trigger keys. It was fun that they didn't know how to work it at first.
And it looks like it's a 2-parter, surprisingly. Or maybe not surprisingly, given how serialized everything is these days.
In episode #8 of "Ultraman", the SSSP team once again leaves Japan to find monsters in secluded regions. This time, they go to an island inhabited by monsters, including Red King and the benevolent Pigmon:
I find it interesting that both Ultraman and JAKQ Dengekitai (the second Sentai series) give the heroes' organizations nearly the identical name in Japanese, Kagaku Tokusou Tai in the former and Kokusai Kagaku Tokusou Tai in the latter, but they use different English translations and acronyms -- Ultraman renders it as Science Special Search Party (SSSP) and JAKQ translates it as International Science Special Investigation Squad (ISSIS). Since JAKQ was about a decade later, I wonder if they were homaging Ultraman. They're both reasonably literal renderings, though I think "Investigation Squad" is the better translation of the two, since "search party" refers more to a temporary group than a permanent organization. Hmm, I wonder if JAKQ had to use a different acronym for trademark reasons, since the Ultraman merchandise probably had "SSSP" printed all over the toys and such. (But man, the ISSIS acronym has not aged well.)
See also Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger, literally Special Investigation Squadron Detective-ranger, whose English name in the show is Special Police Dekaranger (SPD, an acronym the Power Rangers adaptation had to keep since it was all over the costumes and tech).
In this week's episode #14 of "Mirrorman", Kyotaro receives a telepathic message from his father, warning of the coming of the King of Monsters (no, not that one):
Episode #34 of "Ultraman Cosmos" sees the return of Doigaki's crush, archeologist Yoshii Yukari:
This week's entry in the 55th Anniversary Campaign is episode #43 of "Ultraman Dyna":
I'm getting near the end of Return of Ultraman on ShoutFactory, and it's taken an unexpected turn in its final third. For most of its run, it was focused mostly on Earthbound monsters, like the original Ultraman. But starting at around episode 35, it suddenly switched to Ultraseven's format of focusing exclusively on alien invaders. Which is not a format I'm that fond of, because it's easier to buy that there are plenty of different giant monsters living on a large planet like Earth than it is to believe that so many different alien races simultaneously want to invade or destroy Earth that it comes under weekly attack, and yet they never seem to team up or get in each other's way. Also, a lot of their invasion/extermination plans are ridiculous, like trying to eradicate Earth's entire female population by turning them into vampires one at a time, or randomly causing car crashes around Mt. Fuji as if that would somehow terrorize Earth into surrendering.
Also, I'm past the episode that brought back both Ultraseven and the original Ultraman for cameos, establishing for the first time that the so-called Return features a different Ultraman after all (eventually retroactively named Ultraman Jack). It was weird -- they went to the trouble to bring back the lead actors of both previous series, but only for like a 30-second dialogue-free scene where they meet, smile, and shake hands, with no explanation for how Shin Hayata is bonded with his Ultraman again. It hardly seemed worth the trouble of bringing them back.
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