How I Think Kamen Rider Kuuga Revolutionized Kamen Riders of the Heisei Era
Well since I feel like I haven't given Kamen Rider Kuuga enough credit so I'd like to credit it for actually defining the basic styles of how to write Heisei Riders.
The way the multiple forms are introduced.
Kuuga avoided the being too episodic and decided to focus on introducing these forms in a way that is more "realistic". Yuusuke doesn't immediately learn to use these forms and plus, each form carries a plot tied to the story better done than when it was during the days of Black RX. Each of the forms were handled in a J-Drama fantasy style for me. So pretty much, Arakawa doesn't want the hero to be "high and mighty", rather to be "more human" which I think is good, so pretty much the template left by Black RX with multiple forms was put to good use.
The allies are far more involved.
Okay we got that introduced in Black RX but it was a rough draft, Kuuga had its time to let the allies become more involved as a better mold to them. Women get to show even if they can't henshin, they are still a necessary driving force to motivate the hero to go on or to organize plots. So pretty much it's the real sandpaper that smooth up the surface of rough draft of allies being more useful that Black RX made. Just made me think Naruhisa Arakawa might want to try J-Drama writing.
Not so standard Kamen Rider villains of Showa era.
Looking at Kamen Rider as of recent, the villains in here are pretty much deviant from the standard but in a good way. For example, it takes at least two episodes before the monster of the week is destroyed and then each episode ends with a dangler, that is in the way that has turned Kamen Rider into a J-Drama for me though for its fans, it's still Tokusatsu at heart. For me, it's both. Grongi wasn't your typical organization, it was pretty much based on civilizations though other Heisei Riders like W still dealt with organizations instead of civilizations. The Grongi apparently brought the issue of racist villains in Kamen Rider and the monsters of the week weren't involved in silly plots, rather they were acting like villains in a fantasy drama.
Overall, Kuuga though it's not my top favorite still deserves to be credited for how it molded the Heisei Kamen Rider era while showing there's always room for improvement for every season. Now only if the current writers will try to check how to do better stuff in Kamen Rider with this series' character interactions by examining this series.