Sunday, September 29, 2013

Kamen Rider Wizard and Gaim

Just wanted to point out, on my other blog, I have pages up, with images and info, about Kamen Rider Wizard (which recently ended), and Kamen Rider Gaim (which is about to premiere)

Kamen Rider Wizard

Kamen Rider Gaim

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Toy Collection

I began watching Akibarangers - and as I'd imagine like many others, the background toys and memorabilia seen in the Secret Base is cause for excitement, seeing all sort of wonderful toys collected together. I recently got a few new figures and trinkets, and decided I might take photos of them and of the rest of my collection and share them with you.

The quality isn't that great, but I tried the best I could with what the iPhone was capable of.

Here's the big spread, showing most of my collection. A mix of Japanese products and Power Ranger toys. (Warning, these images are large)

Here below are some close ups. I included DVDs, and other Tokusatsu products.

One of my biggest regrets was, before I really knew much about Super Sentai, I got rid of many of my original Power Ranger toys. (I'm speaking of the original Megazord, and the Thunderzords) Boy, does it hurt knowing I gave them up at a garage sale! But, of the survivors, are these morphing figures. (I remember being so excited to find these toys, all on sale at the same time, when I was very very young. Getting the whole group was quite catch.


One Lord Zedd Putty survived, and the later releases of the White and Green Ranger.

 The S.H. Figuarts have become an important new goal in my collecting. The finely posable figures really exceed expectations, of what an action figure can be. Here are Geki and Burai, along with the recently released Metal Megazord. (Warning, first image is large)

Samurai Ha-Oh has got to be the jewel treasure of my collection. During the airing of Shinkenger, I slowly bought up all the robot toys -- directly from Japan. This photo had an awesome shine to it, all by accident.

 S.H. Figuarts actually released Shinken Red and Shinken Gold directly to Toys R Us one year. It became a chore to find them, but they where well worth it. (They are even better, now that I have Fiugarts stands, to display them with.)

Power Rangers Jungle Fury holds another special place in my heart - as its through this series (and youtube), that I was exposed to its original format: that of Juken Sentai Gekiranger. Luckily, the toys released in America stood in very well for the original characters.

Power Rangers R.P.M. nicely stood in for Engine Sentai Go-Onger toys.

Power Ranger Mega Force toys (at least the robots), likewise where good substitutes for the original Japanese figures of Tensou Sentai Goseiger.

This little toy is of the robot from Bioman. It was from a blind box of Sentai Robots - so I was pretty pleased with what I got.

Here's the result of a blind box purchase that didn't turn out like I was hoping for. Instead of a mini Ultraman - I got one of his monsters. Cute little guy, though!

This little guy didn't come in a blind box - I knew what I was getting. I just got this and the Ultraman monster today; so I'm pretty happy to add them both to my collection.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Super Sentai, Kamen Rider, and other Tokusatsu in the US!

I did not expect this to happen... really, ever -- but, unless this is a big mistake, news is that Toei is launching a "Toei Japan Channel" - which will feature Tokusatsu shows in America. It's described as a pay service -- and English Subtitles will NOT be included for at least a year. (It would be coming, though. Right now, they want to focus on Japanese viewers living abroad)

This... this is a really unbelievable! Totally in a good way! But I'm still a little flabbergasted, that a true and legitimate way to watch Super Sentai, and other Tokusatsu programming, will be offered in America.

Thus far we've had to rely on the likes of TV Nihon -- who I'm very curious to see what their response to all of this is. They had stated before - that if these shows where offered in America, with English subtitles, then they would discontinue their translating efforts. The one lone release of the updated Kamen Rider movie is an example of this -- being removed from their site once it was licensed and brought over to America.

This, however, is not a single movie: this is... well... EVERYTHING! I don't know wether classic series would be translated as well - but even just doing the current series would be exceptional, and deeply gratifying to see available to an American audience.

This could literally change the face of Tokusatsu on the internet forever!

I'm of course excitedly leaping to conclusions -- but, if offered with subtitles, I would definitely subscribe to this channel. I think a whole lot of people would as well.

I really never thought Toei would actually do this. It's like a dream come true. But there have been small steps that have indicated that these companies are aware of Western interest in their shows. Actual Japanese products have been brought over to America (not through websites - but actually landing in American stores, via ToysRus) Shinkenger S.H. Figuarts came out in ToysRus a while ago -- and just a few weeks ago I saw Shinken-Oh (the Japanese version) on the shelf of a small mall ToysRus; Japanese packaging and everything! I would have been dragging that big box home, if not for the fact I bought the Japanese version many years ago. Super Sentai music was released on iTunes (still waiting for Kamen Rider ^_^) - but it was another encouraging sign, that the Western market place was becoming a more viable reality for real Tokusatsu products.

This could turn out to be a bust -- but I don't believe it will be. There really is a serious interest in these shows - so I would expect this Toei Japan Channel to be a success.

There could be changes coming!

Really, really interested to see what TV Nihon does. I think they would be glad to step aside, if Tokusatsu was offered like this. BUT would they still translate shows that don't appear on the network? Are they still going to operate, as is, until english subtitles are offered? If so - it might mean Kyouryuuger would be their last dubbed series, with only ssome of the next Super Sentai done -- assumedly, the next series would be cut off once Toei begins translating. (Would we see Kamen Rider Gaim translated all the way through, or just most of it, since its beginning next month?)

OR - TV Nihon might stop their dubbing immediately?

Its also worth noting - that, even with English Subtitles being offered - unless Toei hires people from TV Nihon - we likely won't see as good, or quality a translation as we might now be use to.

There sure are a lot of scary propositions coming out of this announcement! BUT - for a chance to see Super Sentai and Kamen Rider, in an official and above board manner -- it's change that will be welcome.

What do you think of this news? It seems like a dream come true -- but there are still a lot of unknowns, wether and how this all happens. How much would you be willing to pay, each month, if you where able to get episodes of the latest Super Sentai and Kamen Rider? Would other Tokusatsu shows be offered? Akibaranger? Would the quality of videos be good enough -- if everything is streaming? Would other languages be made available down the line?

All in all - this is a good thing. Tokusatsu is such an original and landmark product of Japan - and I'm very happy to see them finally sharing this product with the world -- unfiltered and unedited. However TV Nihon and other subtitling groups react - the ball will ultimately be in Toei's hands, especially once english subtitles are provided.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Wonderful 101

I wanted to point out and direct anyone interested, I put up a post about Wonderful 101, the upcoming game from Platnium Studios, which is packed full of Tokusatsu inspired characters and themes. The game has some potential downsides - which I try to address - but also put up reviews and info about the game - to let people know what the game is actually about, and why I think it will still be a fun title to buy.

BTW - not only does this game heavily take cues from Super Sentai, and other Tokusatsu series - but has been announced that it will also contain the Japanese voice tracks, in addition to the American voices.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Dinosaurs, Images and Figures

I added a profile for KyouryuuViolet, and am adding a few more images. Kyouryuuger, being a very bright and colorful show - has, for me at least (and probably other people), been a hard show to get into. The addition of more and more new Rangers has certainly kept my eye on the series - but largely I've had a hard time getting into it. I hope that changes -- I'm catching up on some episodes. Has the series gotten better, or remained the same from the first few initial episodes?

Also been catching up on Zyuranger. It occurs to me, that every Dinosaur inspired series in Super Sentai has had a sense of humor and levity. Zyuranger can get serious -- but you can't watch the Dinosaur Eggs episodes, on Delos Island, and not be surprised by the abject wackiness of the storyline. Abaranger, certainly, took wacky moments to new heights -- with Kyouryuuger similarly following suit. Why no serious Dinosaur Sentai series? (Just thinking out loud.)

Speaking of Zyuranger -- I've had the pleasure of seeing a lot of good merchandise released for the series. With the 20th Anniversary of Power Rangers - a new Metalic Megazord was released, with word of a Dragon Zord due to come out next year. I've also begun building the Zyuranger cast with S.H. Figuarts figures; TyrannoRanger is an awesome figure, and DragonRanger is expected in the mail soon. PetraRanger is releasing later this year -- with the remaining three members already announced. (With both a male and female TigerRanger/Yellow Ranger!) I'm very excited about it all!

You can find these images added here: KyouryuuRed Profile

You can find this image added here: KyouryuuBlack Profile

You can find this image added here: KyouryuuGreen Profile

You can find these images added here: KyouryuuPink Profile

You can find this image added here: KyouryuuGold Profile

Many-Faced High Priest Chaos
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Gokaiger Previous Sentai Powers
You can find this image added here: Previous Sentai Powers Page 2