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

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    Well, the Shout! Factory DVDs, BluRays and Streams have been going for years now, the full episodes with English subtitles on YouTube begann three years ago, I'd say Tsuburaya must have enough data by now to base further decisions on. I don't know about mainstream, but the fact that Blazar is getting an immediate English dub when just three years ago we were very happy to see Ultraman Z episodes getting streamed in a timely fashion on YouTube with English subtitles, I guess the numbers must be good. I don't know about mainstream, but the international profile of the Ultra Series is growing, so that's nice.

    Hm. Does this mean merch will get less expensive? Would be nice.


    Edit: Actually forgot to post this week's uploaded episodes.

    Taro #12


    Seven #38


    Dubbed Z #23


    Dubbed Z #24
     
  2. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Ultraman Blazer pre release special

     
  3. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

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    ^Blazar. ;)

    Taro #13


    Seven #39


    Dubbed Z Finale
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Something I wasn't expecting: Ultraman Regulos First Mission episode 1 is now on YouTube. The English subtitles aren't showing up yet, but hopefully that will be fixed soon.


    Apparently this picks up where The Destined Crossroad left off.

    EDIT: Okay, the subtitles are working now. It's more of Sakamoto playing around with his favorite characters and story arcs -- Regulos joins the Galaxy Rescue Force, Alien Reiblood is the big bad, all five English-language Ultras (Ultra Force, Great, Powered) arrive as a team to back up Regulos, and there's even a character from the Ultraman Zearth parody movies.

    Also, this appears to be a 2-part special, and part 2 will be aired on Sunday in Japan, so Saturday in the US.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2023
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    More news: TokuSHOUTsu has added a few more bits and bobs to its nearly-complete Ultraman collection:

    https://twitter.com/tokushoutsu/status/1675928000599330817

    They've got Ultraman: The Next (the 2004 gritty-reboot movie that was retroactively tied into the same continuity as Nexus), The Superior 8 Ultra Brothers (a weird crossover movie set in a parallel universe with alternate versions of characters from the first four Showa series and the first three Heisei series, plus the real Ultraman Mebius), the two Zearth parody movies, and the Ultraman Kids anime series featuring chibi versions of Ultra characters. Still no sign of the English-language shows or Heisei Ultraseven.
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'm at a hotel this weekend, but fortunately they have YouTube on hotel TVs now. It took me a while to figure out the controls, but I got to see the premiere of Ultraman Blazar on a big screen. Which is appropriate, since it was a pretty cinematic debut. The opening scene borrowed from The Avengers, but overall it felt like a sequence from one of the more serious Godzilla movies, with the whole episode devoted to a military operation against a rampaging kaiju. Effective stuff, doing a good job setting up Captain Himura's reputation and personality (including what's evidently going to be a standard thing where he visualizes potential options before deciding on a plan).

    Blazar is very unusual, a much more primal, feral Ultraman, and very nonverbal. We've had plenty of silent Ultras before, but usually there's some initial communication with the host where they agree to connect, verbally or just through some kind of silent communication of intent like with Dyna or Decker. Here, Blazar literally forces Himura to activate the henshin. Although it comes across quite clearly that Blazar chooses Himura for his selflessness in protecting people, and Blazar is very protective of humans too.

    Blazar's introductory moment is very well-directed, a gradual, ominous reveal. Although it involves Blazar righting a toppling building, which undermines the illusion. If a building's foundations have crumbled, you can't just straighten it up and have it be okay again.

    Because of all the advance trailers and ads, this is the first time that I've already recognized the Ultra's action theme music the moment it's first used. It's effective that way.
     
  7. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Televi-Kun has announced the release of an Ultraman Blazar Manga. A preview will be shown July 28th but in the meantime here a picture from the Televi-Kun twitter


    [​IMG]
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'm curious about the comments from the producer that Blazar is (or at least was originally?) meant to be a "primitive" Ultra, more of a primal warrior. In several continuities, Ultras are what humanoids evolve into when exposed to a hyper-advanced energy source. So how can primitive Ultras exist? Were they irradiated by some more advanced civilization?

    Then again, I guess Ultras can have other origins, e.g. how Ultraman Gaia and Agul were chthonic spirits of the Earth.

    Well, I guess maybe we'll find out more as we go. It's interesting that they said "astronauts" have legends about the Ultraman being sighted, so it seems Blazar or others of his people have been around the Sol system for a while (unless Earth has interstellar capability this time, which is hardly unprecedented in Ultra series).
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Fairly short concluding part to Ultraman Regulos First Mission:



    Pretty straightforward bunch of fights, not much story. The whole "search for Ribut" angle ends anticlimactically when Ribut just shows up, having returned from his visit to Trigger's universe that we already knew about.

    This is only a 2-part special, but it ends with "To Be Continued," so I guess the plan is to do more later. Hopefully there will be some actual story eventually, like delving into Regulos's missing memories. Though I guess that's not really the brand for these things.
     
  10. Redfern

    Redfern Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    [​IMG]

    A piece I staged for friends upon a private board. Basically, how might it look if a species of sapient felinoids adapted "Ultraman" for their popular entertainment. What would be a truly disturbing and uncanny kaiju for them? "UltraMogg" must somehow thwart "Pugzilla"!

    :wtf: :shrug: :wtf: :shrug: :wtf:

    Uh...I'll just my coat and let myself out.
     
  11. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

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    And for those who've missed it:

    This feels more like a prologue, and the preview for the next episode shows that the basic set-up of the show will come together there.
    For what it was, I liked it a lot. Very mature, very cinematic. Also less toyetic than usual Ultra shows, though we knew that from the previews (and the upcoming mecha is probably making up for the lack of colorful uniforms and futuristic vehicles, as was the case with Ultraman Z). I guess they really want any new fans who watched Shin Ultraman to stick around.
    Looking forward to episode 2.

    Meanwhile, ...

    Taro #14


    Seven #40
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Blazar #2:



    Well. So much for the people who were expecting a dark, gritty series like Nexus. This one was very light-hearted, focusing on Gento assembling his team with a lot of slice-of-life humor, and with the climactic fight featuring Blazar using his weapon in a rather silly way. I wonder if the typical tone will be more like this or more like episode 1.

    I do like the element that Gento's boss, Haruno, is unsure if Blazar is friend or foe and charges SKaRD with investigating him. I've often felt it would be an interesting twist if the commander of the defense team mistrusted Ultraman or saw him as a threat. It briefly looked like the Australian Ultraman: Towards the Future series was going there with its captain, but it was dropped after the first episode.

    Interesting that it's Blazar who decides when it's time to come out by triggering the coin and the Blazar Brace. I think Ultraman Jack worked that way sometimes; Go was the only host who didn't have a transformation device, and it often seemed that Jack just came out when Go was in imminent danger or when things got bad enough, without Go necessarily seeming to have control over it.
     
  13. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    After that episode I'm hungry for grilled fish.
     
  14. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

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    There certainly is some tone shift from the first episode, though the humor is mostly on the mature side. I felt the banter was a bit misplaced, though. These are characters who just met each other, but they're talking to each other as if they'd been friends for a while. But as it was, the banter was relatively funny.

    Although, while it was Blazar who made the Brace and coin appear, it was up to Gento to actually trigger them. It appears that Blazar forcing Gento in the first episode was more about showing him how it works, and leaving the transformation as a suggestion to Gento in the second episode. It would mean (and the rest of what we've seen so far seems to corroborate this) that Blazar cannot communicate with Gento verbally or telepathically.


    Meanwhile:

    Taro #15


    Seven #41
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, yes, of course. He had to force it the first time since it was the only way he had to communicate how it worked.

    What concerns me is that when the Ultra and host don't communicate, there's little exploration of their relationship, or what it means to the host to be joined to an Ultra. There's quite an interesting situation here, with Gento being joined without consent or communication (though he seems to be okay with it) and not really understanding what's going on, but how much will they be able to explore his thoughts and feelings about all this if he can't communicate with Blazar, or can't tell anyone about what he goes through?

    The ideal thing would be for at least one other person to be in the loop, which has been a fairly common thing in the New Generation era. But so far this is feeling like something of a throwback to the Showa-era shows in some respects; at least episode 2 felt a lot like a Showa homage.

    I mean, my question is, how much of what Blazar does is Blazar, and how much is Gento? The howling and threat posturing are clearly Blazar, but there was that moment in the premiere where he looked at himself in confusion, which seemed to be Gento's mind coming through. So was it Gento that saw the endangered soldier and prompted Blazar to intimidate Bazanga into backing away? Was it Gento who decided to use the Spiral Burrade as a fishing pole? I get the feeling there's a mix of both personalities in play, that Gento's will is influencing Blazar, but it's mainly Blazar in control. Which might be why it feels dreamlike to Gento, if he's somewhat dissociated during the merger.

    I think I actually kind of miss the "inner space" of the previous NG series. It was introduced as a way to show off the toy gimmicks, but it helped give insight into the hosts' POV and mindset and their relationship with their Ultras (where applicable). I can understand the desire to stop using the gimmick, but it does remove a useful tool.
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Just watched Blazar #2 again, and I noticed a cute little bit of subversion. When Gento first ordered the team to move out, Emi said "Wilco," and for a moment we thought that was going to be one of the distinctive English acknowledgment phrases that Ultra-series defense teams tend to use, like "Roger" or "Got it," but then Anri stumbled over it and just fell back on Ryokai, the standard Japanese acknowledgment (essentially "understood"), and Teruaki did the same. So "Wilco" isn't a team phrase, it's just Emi's thing. (Apparently she spent a lot of time in the English-speaking world, according to her bio.)
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Blazar #3: "The Name is Earth Garon":


    Aaaaahh!!! I love it when the giant robots are treated pseudo-realistically with a support team and an elaborate launch system and all that -- Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla 2, Evangelion, Go-Busters, etc. Ultraman Z had that to an extent, but this is even cooler.

    I guess they are adopting "Wilco" as the standard acknowledgment for SKaRD after all. Oh, well. It is interesting to see how they're feeling their way toward becoming a team. Ultra series tend to skip over that part. Usually the team is already in place and the Ultra/host is the newcomer, or is already a member beforehand. Seeing the whole team be equally new is something I don't think we've seen since Mebius, and the '79 anime is the only other instance I can recall.

    It seems we're getting the origin story in bits and pieces. I'd assumed that Blazar chose Gento as host upon seeing him risk his life to protect the other soldier in the Bazanga attack. But the flashback here reveals that the initial contact occurred earlier, in unclear circumstances. It can't have been too much earlier, since the Bazanga attack was clearly the first time he'd transformed.

    Also, it looks like Gento has a wife and kid. Interesting, since I saw a comment on Twitter the other day that Gento had the manner of someone who just wanted to get off work and get home to his family. I guess they were perceptive.

    Interesting to see that Blazar has vulnerabilities -- he was hampered fighting Taganular because it was simply too hot to touch. I was actually kind of expecting Earth Garon to have to come to Blazar's rescue. I guess it did that to an extent, though of course it usually has to be the Ultra that delivers the finisher blow.
     
  18. Kai "the spy"

    Kai "the spy" Admiral Admiral

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    And they managed to put a sky beam into the finale. ;)

    Enjoyed the episode very much. They seem to have assambled a great team before and behind the camera for this series.

    I do wonder when we'll get to see Gento's family.

    Next episode appears to be focused on Emi and her work as the team's field investigator.
    Previous shows usually had the whole team, or at least the Ultra's host and one other member, do field investigations as part of their overall jobs. This show appears to take a different course, with Emi as sole field investigator (even going undercover) with it being her main job on the team.


    Meanwhile:

    Taro #16


    Seven #42
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I liked the approach Ultraman X took, where there was a combat team and a science team, and the Ultra host was part of the science team for a change.

    And I particularly liked the approach of Ultraman Gaia, where the defense force was this really big organization with multiple specialized teams featured in different episodes, rather than just five or six people doing everything. I'm glad they did Blazar instead of a "New Generation Gaia," but it would've been nice to see another organization like that.
     
  20. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    By the way... Does the existence of Ultraman X and Ultraman Z imply the existence of Ultraman Y? And if not... Y not?