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. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    Also today, TokuSHOUTsu's YT channel uploaded the full episode #21 of "Return to Ultraman":


    And Tsuburaya continues "UltraSeven" with episode #13:

    In hindsight, I should have known why they didn't upload an episode last week, as it would have been episode #12's turn, which is the show's banned episode. Though they could have just uploaded #13 last week.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    In my idle musing about the worldbuilding of the Ultra franchise, I realized something. I've wondered why it was that some of the Ultras from the original Land of Light universe needed to bond with human hosts to survive on Earth (Ultraman, Jack, Ace, Taro) while others could simply disguise themselves as humans (Ultraseven, Leo, 80, Mebius). But it just struck me that the four in the former category merged with their hosts in order to revive them after they were killed. So maybe it wasn't that they couldn't disguise themselves as humans, just that they chose to merge with humans to save them, then continued the partnership by mutual consent because it was beneficial to both Ultra and host. (Though I believe Shin Hayata was comatose throughout with Ultraman controlling his body, because he had no memory afterward, something we've only seen since with Zero's host in his second movie. Also because Hayata was a cipher with much less character development than the rest of the cast, as if he were just Ultraman's facade.)

    It does seem, though, that Ultras from the Land of Light (or their cousins (?) from Leo's homeworld L77) are nearly the only ones who can shapeshift to disguise themselves as human, or at least are shown doing so. A couple of later Ultras have the ability -- Ultraseven 21 in Neos and Ribut in his Trigger appearance -- but Neos and Seven 21 are apparently native to the Land of Light (since they're dispatched to that show's universe by Zoffy), and Ribut is apparently meant to be from there as well. The only other ones I can think of that definitely have the ability are the Ultra-Ancient Giants in Tiga and Trigger. (I'm discounting Ultras who are humanoid in their native form -- the U-40 Ultras from the anime, the O-50 Ultras from Orb and R/B, and the half-human Geed.)
     
  3. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    Titan Books is going to publish "Ultraman: The Official Novelization" by Pat Cadigan based on the 1966 series, to be released in May 2023. I've pre-ordered it at the comic shop, and I'm quite curious how this will be structured. Maybe it will be a bit of a James Blish-style short story collection adapting a "best of" the episodes, with the first and last episodes as narrative framing?

    UltraSeven helps out his younger Ultra Brother on New Year's Eve in episode #39 of "Ultraman Ace":
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2022
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I thought there was going to be another recap episode this week because of New Year's, but there's nothing on the YouTube channel. Is it actually supposed to be next week? Having a two-week break in the middle of the climactic arc would be even more obnoxious.
     
  5. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
  6. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    Even by Showa standarts, this is a weird one; a super-fast man in a black cape steals stuffed pandas all over Tokyo, in episode #40 of "Ultraman Ace":
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    The last Marluru/Hotta clip show was tonight, so it's yet another week before the Decker finale arc resumes with its penultimate episode. This was the usual mix of clips from Trigger, Decker, and elsewhere, starting with the duo reflecting on the near-destruction of the world at the climax of Trigger, then the return of Megalothor and Trigger's team-up with Decker, then segueing to Dyna's recent team-up appearance, and then into what Marluru has "heard" from Deban (the narrator of Trigger's clip shows) about Dyna's battles in other dimensions, specifically the events of Ultraman Saga where he merged with Zero and Cosmos to become Saga. I wonder if there's a specific reason they included that; maybe the finale will somehow involve Dyna, Decker, and Trigger merging into a tripartite Ultra.
     
  8. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    There's also going to be a Decker movie in February, with a simultaneous release in Japanese theaters and on Tsuburaya Imagination. And I'd expect a pay-per-view release internationally similar to last year's Trigger movie, considering they bothered with an English-language version of the poster:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Here's episode 7 of The Destined Crossroad:


    The focus shifts to a rescue mission to The Kingdom consisting mostly of secondary Ultras from various series: Astra from Leo, Ultraseven 21 from Neos, Ultraman Justice from the final Cosmos movie, Ultraman Xenon from Max, Ultraman Hikari from Mebius, and Ultraman Victory from Ginga S -- plus Andro Melos, title character of an obscure miniseries of short episodes that was also the source of the villain Juda from earlier in TDC. Belial and Tregear finally stop standing on the sidelines and get into the action.

    Astra apparently has some kind of special tracking ability that lets him identify The Kingdom's coordinates and is the team's only way to escape to their own dimension (supposedly -- why not just take Zero with them and use his dimension-crossing power?). This seems to be a newly introduced ability, since Astra's never been given much attention or personality before. In Leo, he was just a deus ex machina who occasionally showed up to help his big brother Leo and then left again (and for at least part of that he was being impersonated by Barbarue Seijin), and since then he's pretty much just had cameos alongside Leo.

    Hikari determines that The Kingdom's energy tower is unstable and destroying the planet, explaining why the Absolutians want to conquer the Land of Light. I'm betting the resolution will involve the Ultras making peace with the Absolutians by repairing the energy tower or helping them find a new homeworld. Although I suspect that won't happen until the two main Absolutian villains are killed and the more honorable Titan takes over.

    We briefly see Mother of Ultra healing Ribut in much the same way she's previously been shown to bring Ultras back from the dead, so maybe he did die? Although the Wiki just says he ran out of energy.
     
    Kai "the spy" likes this.
  10. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    Episode #14 of "UltraSeven" is part one of the two-parter introducing King Joe:
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I just realized the metatextual reason why the task force to rescue Princess Yullian consists almost entirely of secondary Ultras -- because Yullian was Ultraman 80's secondary Ultra, though she only made one significant and one token appearance in Ultra form. Although it's odd that they omit Ultraman Agul, pretty much the only remaining secondary, in favor of Victory, who was already featured in the first few episodes.

    Thinking about that, though, I figured out that this miniseries omits every main-series 1990s Ultra -- Great, Powered, Tiga, Dyna, Gaia, Agul. The only 1990s Ultras it includes are the joke characters Ultraman Zearth and Ultraman Nice. (Also technically Neos and Ultraseven 21, since that miniseries was filmed in the '90s but released in 2000.) It also omits Ultraman Max (aside from a cameo in a screen graphic), though his superior Xenon is included. Great, Powered, and Max were in The Absolute Conspiracy, so that leaves Tiga, Dyna, Gaia, and Agul as the only live-action Ultras I know of who haven't appeared in any of the Ultra Galaxy Fight miniseries (other than Trigger Dark and Decker). I wonder why that is. Were they off-limits to avoid conflicting wtih the plans for them in Trigger, Decker, and the rumored Gaia anniversary series? Or is it just that they're getting enough exposure there that Sakamoto wanted to focus on everyone else instead?
     
  12. The Lensman

    The Lensman Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2001
    Location:
    The Lensman
    1 hour until Shin Ultraman! I hope it’s awesome!
     
  13. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    Decker #24:


    Ace #41:
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    So finally, we get back to the Decker endgame in progress. This was a good one, a strong climax to Agams's story arc, and a surprisingly final one. And we finally get an explanation for what that "Trees, ocean, land" recitation was -- it was Laelia practicing her Japanese to prepare for going to Earth. Since toku aliens always seem to speak Japanese anyway, it didn't occur to me that that could be an issue.

    They pretty much ignore the whole "3-minute limit" rule these days, don't they? Decker's Color Timer started blinking red almost instanly due to the Sphere infection, and Trigger's was red from his battle in progress with Mother Spheresaurus, but they were both able to keep fighting for several minutes more.
     
  15. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    UGF: Destined Crossroads, episode #8:


    And, with episode #15 of "UltraSeven", the conclusion of the King Joe 2-parter:
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    So we finally get a real introduction for Ultraman Regulos, who's an Ultra defined by martial arts mastery and has the Ultra equivalent of irezumi tattoos. He also seems to be from the same origin as Leo and Astra, which I figured, since Regulus is the brightest star in the constellation Leo, and since there's a resemblance between them. And there are references to his mysterious backstory, which I assume will be revealed in his own upcoming web series, which we probably won't get to see on the free site for a while yet.

    So the secondary Ultras have finished their mission and get conveniently sent away. Looks like the final battle features the new guys, Regulos, Ribut, and Zero, along with all the Showa Ultras minus 80 and plus Mebius. I wonder why poor 80 got left out.
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    News on what will be airing once Decker ends:

    https://tokusatsunetwork.com/2023/01/ultraman-new-generation-stars-coming-january-28/

    It sounds like it's another of those "series" that are just pure clip shows, using the "lost memories" gimmick as a frame to recap scenes from the New Generation shows.

    It's annoying that we get new Ultra content for only half the year when we get it year round with Toei shows. The least they could do is save the web series like Ultra Galaxy Fight for airing during the breaks between the main series.
     
  18. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    Yes, they do these clip show series each year in-between the proper new shows. I'm not going to complain about the Ultra shows these days having fewer episodes, as I still remember the days when there were years without any new shows. Besides, there is still more stuff I'd like to watch but won't for lack of time in the current media environment, like the Toei shows you mention.
     
  19. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Lost in Time and Space
    After the original Ultraman battled the snow mountain protective spirit monster Woo back in 1966, a new Woo battles alongside Ace against another ice mountain monster in episode #42 of "Ultraman Ace":



    And then, it is time for the grand finale, Decker #25:
     
  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I found the Decker finale somewhat disappointing. The joint operation against Mother Spheresaurus was disappointing. What exactly was the plan, and how was it supposed to help? Trigger takes energy from Mother's core and passes it to Decker, who attacks Mother ineffectually with just his usual tactics? And Kengo falls out of the sky in human form and somehow lands safely, while Kanata runs through a field of fire before transforming instead of transforming before entering a lethal battlefield? They didn't even fight together, or debut any new form for the climax. And they said at the beginning that the Nursedessei and Terraphaser were too badly damaged to join the fight, and then they just join the fight anyway. It just seemed like filling time until the climax.

    The idea that Sphere's intention is benevolent, to assimilate everything into a uniform mass so there's no more conflict, is the callback to Dyna's version of Sphere that I've been waiting for, but it was too cursory, introduced too late and resolved too quickly with a single volley of shouted heroic speeches. It would have been better if Sphere's true goal had been introduced earlier in the season, if maybe there had been a character who was their agent and had argued their case in an ongoing debate with Kanata.

    Still, it had its moments. Ichika got a nice dramatic scene when she confronted Kanata after learning he was Decker. Although I was surprised that the Captain was surprised by that announcement -- I'd gotten the impression he already knew, as the captains usually do by the final episode.

    Overall, this was a considerably better season than Trigger, with better character work, and I'd say it's one of the better series of the New Generation era, but probably not the best, and not on a par with Dyna.

    It looks like there's a "finale" movie coming next month to Japanese theaters and Tsuburaya Imagination, featuring a new Ultra called Ultraman Dinas, identical to Decker Miracle Type but with a female human form. Also featuring a bunch of returning monsters and King Joe. I hope it shows up on the free site eventually.