Posts

Showing posts from 2016

Is Kuroto Dan Running A Killer Bored Gemn?

Image
This week's Kamen Rider Gaim has Kamen Rider Gemn's identity getting revealed to the others. Kuroto Dan revealed his identity as Gemn first to the audience then to the protagonist riders. While he appears to be a nice person but he's really a sadistic madman who gathers Game Data of Death from others to create what could be a Resident Evil type of game called "Dangerous Zombie". This reminded me of one villain from Abaranger. If you haven't watched Abaranger yet then I suggest you do. Imagination Station has already finished subbing it. I know it's already 2016 but it's still a fun show nonetheless.

One of Abaranger's villains is also a professional doctor known as Mikoto Nakadai. He's bored and wants to have some excitement at the cost of other people's lives. Mikoto accepted the dangerous power of Abare Killer and had Top Galer as his companion. He's always making everyone's lives miserable for both the Abarangers and the Evolien…

The Possible Reason Why Taiwan And South Korea Air Japanese Tokusatsu While They Localize Japanese Manga Or Anime Into TV Dramas

Image
I find it funny how Japanese Tokusatsu could click so fast to certain Asian countries but they decided to localize Japanese Anime and Manga into live shows. Just to make it clear, according to Globalization and Language Association this is what localization means:

Localization (also referred to as "l10n") is the process of adapting a product or content to a specific locale or market. Translation is only one of several elements of the localization process. In addition to translation, the localization process may also include:
Adapting graphics to target marketsModifying content to suit the tastes and consumption habits of other marketsAdapting design and layout to properly display translated textConverting to local requirements (such as currencies and units of measure)Using proper local formats for dates, addresses, and phone numbersAddressing local regulations and legal requirements
The aim of localization is to give a product the look and feel of having been created specifica…

Kamen Rider EX-AID's Taking Over My Mind!

Image
Is it me or am I showing my guilty pleasure of extreme favoritisim? So it's just been eight episodes of Kamen Rider EX-AID and I think my mind is already getting taken over by this show. I may have never been a fan of medical shows but I enjoyed the Taiwanese drama "The Hospital"... I didn't expect myself to get EX-Cited for the next EX-AID episode. So what's with the plots? It's not going to be easy as the Bugsters and the whole Rider Game may have something bigger involved. Sure it has cartoony designs but that's just the package.
So what's up with Taiga Hanaya beign an ex-doctor and what's the whole story why he got fired? I think there's going to be something either predictable as malpractice or unpredictable as a frame-up. I don't know. the show should still be allowed to do its moderate pacing. Why is he after all the Gashats and what will happen to the winner of this game? How many more Kamen Riders will appear? Emu Hojo and Hiiro …

My Taste Fatigue Cycle With Japanese Tokusatsu Series And Taiwanese/Japanese/South Korean TV Drama

Image
One of my most nostalgic moments was when I actually took a momentary break from Tokusatsu. It's something to think about that back in my College days, I still think about the moments I wanted to take a short break from Tokusatsu as a whole. There was a time I wanted to see more Tokusatsu even as an adult. Later, I thought that sometimes taking a short break from what you like is necessary when taste fatigue develops. Super Sentai has been there for 40 years and after some time I wanted to focus on nothing but Super Sentai (even I didn't want to check out more Kamen Rider whether it was Showa or Heisei) but the inevitable arrived. It's Super Sentai taste fatigue. Eating too much of one's favorite food can develop taste fatigue you know.
The first time I took a rather short break from Tokusatsu was so last decade. The invasion of Taiwanese, Japanese and South Korean TV drama was a huge hit. I remembered watching Meteor Garden and I got magnetized into TV dramas that we…

Recovering From The Decade Meltdown Since 2009 Up To 2016

Image
It's already 2016 and yet I still can't forget why I really don't bother to rewatch most of Kamen Rider Decade except for the crossover with Shinkenger. Decade felt like an interesting concept. It's the tenth entry of the Heisei era of Kamen Rider hence its name. It was going to feature other Riders but instead we have Alternate Reality. The more I watched the show the more I just wanted to think about it, "Well Saban's Masked Rider made its return with a sequel. It's got better acting, special effects, action scenes and it's no cheap flick. On the other hand, the writing is almost as bad if not it's just as bad as Saban's Masked Rider!" That's why I love to call Decade as the pseudo-sequel of Saban's Masked Rider.


The only redeeming point the show has had is with its crossover with Samurai Sentai Shinkenger and nothing more. I almost didn't watch it because I thought Mako was going to get sick. Fortunately, she wasn't sic…

I Feel Kamen Rider EX-AID's Getting More EX-Citing

Image
It's no joke that Kamen Rider EX-AID gets me EX-cited (pun intended). I started the first four episodes and it's pretty standard with all the necessary introduction and, "Buy our toys." At the same time, there's this mysterious black version of EX-AID known as Gemn who's aligned with the Bugsters. The show introduced newer concepts with Kamen Rider such as combining video game skills with saving patients while the show's theme is to save patients without using continues. Because in real life, there are NO continues.  
The show addresses the medical field. It presents the moral dilemma from cop shows and medical shows. The latest episode features Hoji Emu's being too soft while his rival doctor Hiryu Kagami/Kamen Rider Brave is too focused on getting the job done. I feel that both Hoji and Kiryu are meant to display different principles to why people are in the medical field. Hoji has a lot to learn on what it means to balance one's life as a doct…

Uncontrollably Fond Of Suzy Bae

Image
I've just finished watching Uncontrollably Fond while waiting for more releases of the weekly Zyuohger, Kamen Rider EX-AID and hopefully more Changeman, Flashman, Timeranger and Janperson subs will be coming out. But I could talk about the 20 episode series with each episode ranging up to one hour.

The plot of Uncontrollably Fond involves Kim Woo Bin as Shin Joon Yong who does a pretty good job playing as a stuck up jerk who still has some goodness left within. Joon Yong has brain cancer and he's doing his best to survive. He's estranged from his mother who has some mental issues, trying to keep all her feelings to herself and his biological father has no idea that he exists. Suzy Bae plays Noh Eul a producer who tends to be money hungry just so she could support her younger brother. I admit though letting Suzy play a 28 year old character when she's only 22 feels awkward. It's like as if Samhwa Networks could have phoned Maaya Uchida for a little more age accurat…

So What's The Deal With South Korean TV Drama Based On Japanese Media?

Image
While watching South Korean drama, I could remember how some Super Sentai seasons were purposely skipped because they were "too Japanese". These shows are Hurricanger and Shinkenger but they're airing Ninninger. Ninninger had a South Korean idol named Shin appeared in one episode of Ninninger. Did any Toku fans who also watch K-Drama notice it? I simply didn't but I thought he was familiar. I thought he was just a Japanese guy who looked like the actor.

Just like Taiwanese TV drama, South Korean TV Drama also localizes or adapts Japanese shows. That is where they base the script of the show on an existing Anime or Manga then they produce localized versions of the characters. One example was City Hunter which was based on both an Anime and a Manga. The story got Koreanized for South Koreans with everything filmed from scratch. The setting and just about everything was given for Korean audiences. There's no reliance of a single footage from the Anime or J-Drama as …

I Don't Feel Much Of A Generation Gap With New School Heisei Kamen Rider

Image
While not all of the Heisei Kamen Riders are that good, some are better and some come out pretty bad for me. As of late, I noticed I don't feel much of a generation gap or any of that gap at all. While post-Go-Busters Super Sentai season may leave me that feeling of having a generation gap, I don't feel it with Kamen Rider. Even if I didn't like ToQGer's crossover with Kamen Rider Gaim but I still feel like the latter fit me more. So what's the issue?

From Japan Info, here's what it says about Kamen Rider:

With different themes for every installment, Toei made the story line quite dramatic with unexpected events and plot twists to cater to older audiences, while at the same time making the series as educational as possible so that the kids in the audience will learn something after watching the series. Taking latest Kamen Rider GHOST as an example, the theme of Rider power-ups (a Rider’s special abilities) have been based on famous historical beings (eg. Newton…

Wishful Thinking: Slicing Like A Ninja Themed Kamen Rider!

Image
As much as I don't like Ninninger for how it turned out but I thought the ideas revolving around the Final Shuriken and the Last Ninja aren't bad ideas. Just that, Super Sentai may have been trying to stay afloat after ratings dropped from Go-Busters up to ToQGer according to @Wiki. I thought about this one... Naomi Takebe was responsible for some of my favorite Kamen Riders namely Kamen Rider Kiva, Kamen Rider OOO and Kamen Rider Gaim. For Go-Busters, I would think she's got her lackluster performance there and even if I'm among a few who like the series, you can't deny that she's not cut out for Super Sentai.

Yamaji Touha/Jiraiya appeared, as a guest star in Ninninger as the main event. Metal Hero had one ninja themed show, Super Sentai had already three ninja themed shows but Kamen Rider had no official ninja themed Kamen Rider. I think it would be good to try and revive the ideas of the Final Shuriken and Last Ninja in another Kamen Rider battle royale or …

My Thoughts On Kamen Rider EX-AID's First Episode

Image
Even if Over-Time decided not to sub EX-AID (I hope they do finish subbing Timeranger) but we've got EXCITE Subs doing the job of subbing the series. Now I'd like to give my thoughts on the series' first episode. 
The main protagonist Houjo Emu is a pediatrician intern. He's also a gamer. What I find funny is that why is he using something like a retro-gaming gadget than a PS Vita or any current generation handhelds? Again, these are all fictitious devices are left for the show.

Announcement: Over-Time Won't Be Subbing EX-AID But A New Fan-Subbing Group Will!

Image
It's so upsetting to hear that Over-Time wouldn't be subbing EX-AID right? Here's what they said:
Regarding Kamen Rider Ex-Aid, we won’t be picking it up and instead put that time towards working on stuff we’ve left neglected for a while, which, as it stands, is a lot of stuff. Sorry guys.

Our encoder GuSTaVauM will continue to post Ex-Aid raws as usual.


That sounds like bad news right? But don't worry, there's the new fan sub group to make up for it called EXCITE. Yes, it's time to be EXCITEd for those Kamen Rider EX-AID subs.

What's my speculation behind Over-Time deciding not to pick up Kamen Rider EX-AID? They're working on the Timeranger subs which had a very slow pace. Recently, we have 26 subs and I'm glad I'm seeing more clearer copies of the Timeranger subs (I saw Timeranger with bad quality) while waiting for their weekly Zyuohger subs. It was fun to see them sub Kamen Rider Ghost at a weekly basis but I think they want to finish Timera…

I've Seen More Heisei Kamen Rider Than Showa Kamen Rider

Image
With Kamen Rider EX-AID coming out next month, I want to recall how much of the Heisei era of Kamen Rider I've seen (which feels like a J-Drama). I still remember how hesitant I was to watch the newer Kamen Rider because I was "stuck on Showa" and I didn't really see much of Showa. Talk about personal biases there before actually seeing the shows huh? 
The Heisei era of Kamen Rider deviated from traditional writing since Kamen Rider Kuuga. If you've seen some Showa era Kamen Riders (I've only seen Black, Black RX, Kamen Rider Amazon and some episodes of the first Kamen Rider) you may notice that they have different writing styles. Showa Riders operated like Super Sentai villains: they always prepared deadly but absurdly stupid plans to achieve world domination. All that went down the drain with Kamen Rider starting from Kuuga up to present.

I'm In Love With Qiong Yao's Old School Soundtrack!

Image
It's ironic that while I really can't find myself to relate to Qiong Yao's old school series because Liu Xue Hua is old enough to be my mother, I still find the soundtrack nice to listen to. Just because I can't relate to anything that's really that old doesn't mean I couldn't enjoy the soundtrack. What's better is that with the digital age retouching a lot of old school music, you can listen to them in clear digital format than just what I'm showing above.
As a person who loves classical music, I don't see any reason why I can't enjoy old school entertainment soundtrack from Qiong Yao's world. True that I usually prefer modern Chinese or Taiwanese television drama but any good quality music is good quality music. Classical music are centuries old but they're still nice to hear. With the wonders of the digital age, one can listen to old school songs with better quality than what people during their era had.

Celebrating Kamen Rider's 999th To 1,000th Episode

Image
With Zyuohger's upcoming 2,000th episode, I'd like to give a review on Kamen Rider OOO's 999th to 1,000th episode. Both of these episodes were written by Shoji "Patrick Star" Yonemura. While I did enjoy Kabuto but let's just say, Yonemura's gotten worse as time passed by.


The 999th episode had Kougami plan in making a "reboot" of Kamen Rider OOO. It has a throwback to Kamen Rider 1 (which I am yet to see). It has Eiji cast as Takeshi Hongo. I do find this funny considering that Kamen Rider 1 is that old school. In terms of Showa Riders the only ones I've seen from start to end are Kamen Rider Amazon, Kamen Rider Black and Kamen Rider Black RX. I've seen most Heisei era Kamen Riders so I can't comment too much on the Showa era.

Early Thoughts On How Kamen Rider Ex-AID May Turn Out

Image
So here's what Kamen Rider EX-AID's plot is from Toei
Plot Summary 
Computer game viruses have spread in secret around the world. The virus, known as Bugstar, infects a human host before taking over the body and mutating. These Bugstar seek to undermine the world and dominate the human race.

To defeat the Bugstar, a gamer Kamen Rider is needed! Humans have developed the Kamen Rider system with the power of video games to combat the Bugstar. With cooperation from the Ministry of Health and other national institutes that manage public health, the Genmu Corporation created the game machine called the Gamer Driver. By inserting the game software known as Rider Gashats into the Gamer Driver belt, the wearer becomes a Kamen Rider!

Four doctors have been chosen to become Kamen Riders meant to defeat the Bugstar virus! A never seen before “Bugstar vs. Game Rider!” and “Doctor vs. Doctor!” game battle is about to kick off!!


It's Dark! It's Brutal! It's Kamen Rider Amazons Season One!

Image
I've just finished watching Kamen Rider Amazons. For some reason, the show tried to look like an old school film while the clarity and cast shows it's new school. I didn't like the color mode used but the writing was so good I didn't mind it that much. It was written by Yasuko Kobayashi who I assume has managed to spring back to a certain extent. This is a mini-series THAT'S NOT FOR CHILDREN compared to the 1975 Kamen Rider season called Kamen Rider Amazon. No, it's not a sequel to Kamen Rider Amazon. I prefer to view it as its own continuity which tries to take the concept from Kamen Rider Amazon to a whole new level of brutality combined with new school special effects. It just isn't your typical Kamen Rider as it deviates so much that it's pretty much its own show.

How I Wish Kamen Rider Decade Could've Been Handled...

Image
It's a nice relief that after Kamen Rider Decade, there have been a series of Kamen Rider seasons that were miles better. Kamen Rider W, Kamen Rider OOO and Kamen Rider Fourze were really fun deviations from what Kamen Rider used to be. Kamen Rider Wizard was for me not so good. I can't stop praising Kamen Rider Gaim for succeeding where Kamen Rider Ryuki failed. Kamen Rider Drive helped me cope up with my personal distaste of Ninninger though their crossover was pretty good for me. Plus, I never realized that a lot of Kamen Rider series were doing better than the Super Sentai of that year like I never knew how good Kamen Rider Agito was compared to another of my favorites in Super Sentai namely Gaoranger. Though I'd still watch Boukenger over Kamen Rider Kabuto and Shinkenger over Decade.

Why am I bringing Decade up? I say the show had that potential to become a great anniversary season like Gokaiger but it ended up creating a disaster. I guess the whole reason why the s…

What I Think Of Kamen Rider EX-AID's Updates!

Image
From UkiyaSeed, here's the news:
The official TV-Asahi Kamen Rider Ex-Aid website has unveiled the staff for the upcoming series that celebrates the franchise's 45th anniversary.

The series will be produced by Toei's Takahito Ohmori (Kamen Rider Drive, Zyuden Sentai Kyoryuger) and TV-Asahi's Sasaki Motoi, who will also serve as the show's chief producer. Writing the series is Yuya Takahashi (Eight Ranger, Lupin III Part 4), making this his first major tokusatsu project. Takahashi previously wrote Kamen Rider Drive's Type Tokujo specials. Finally, serving as the series' head director is Shojiro Nakazawa(Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, Kamen Rider Wizard).

The series, which is described as a "Battle game with twists happening in the real world" and will revolve around a Rider who fights video game viruses called "Bugstars" that manifest themselves in the real world. Lastly, the show will go all out with its video game theme as it will feature vide…

Early Thoughts On How Kamen Rider EX-AID May Turn Out

Image
It's too early for me to say whether or not I'm about to like a certain season of Kamen Rider over a certain season of Super Sentai. While I don't expect any more darker and edgier Kamen Riders because I don't think it's a feasible idea for the younger audience anymore even if Kamen Rider Kuuga and Kamen Rider Agito were huge hits. Considering 16 years has passed since Kamen Rider Kuuga, the behavior of the Japanese children's market may have considerably changed as much can change within a decade or so. 
My current expectations is that we're either going to get a well-balanced Kamen Rider or a comedy Kamen Rider. After Kamen Rider Kabuto, I felt like darker and edgier is already a vanishing trend after Kamen Rider Kabuto ended. By the looks of EX-AID, I'm expecting a comical Kamen Rider or a well-balanced Kamen Rider instead of a serious one. My early impression is that the cartoony designs with Tokusatsu are done on purpose because it sells better no…

It's Okay To Like Korean Entertainment But Don't Give It Too Much Credit

Image
I agree there's some Korean drama shows though as of late, I really find myself in the position of utter stupidity for simply wanting to watch "Uncontrollably Fond" because of Suzy Bae. In the past, I remembered how I really stuck through "Autumn in My Heart" and could have gone hospitalized over the tears when Song Hye Kyo's character died. I'll admit there's been a few stuff about Korean culture that I like over Japanese culture. Kimchi, kimbap and a lot of their foods taste better than Japanese food. But I could talk about Korean dramas.

Some South Korean shows like "City Hunter" (based on a Japanese Manga of the same name) or "Forbidden Love" do have great action. But before one can ultimately conclude South Koreans are the best with action scenes, one must think have they seen the other East Asian dramas or any Asian drama in general? Japanese have karate, Chinese have kung fu and Koreans have taekwando as their trademark m…

I'm More Into New School Chinese, Japanese And Korean TV Drama Series Over New School Super Sentai Series

Image
I admit that while I do have my bad habit of watching shows for attractive females but I always had it in mind, "A bad show can't be saved by good eye candy while a good show gets overappreciated due to eye candy." I'd like to talk about Chinese drama (whether it's Taiwanese, Hong Kong or from China itself), Japanese drama and Korean drama to why I'm not having much trouble adjusting to the newer series and why I want to stay updated with it. You may see me writing about Heisei era Kamen Rider here (because it feels more like a J-Drama with Tokusatsu elements than the formula Showa era Kamen Riders had) but I'd like to focus more outside the Henshin phase for Chinese, Japanese and Korean Drama.

Why do I have more problems adjusting to newer Super Sentai and maybe to an extension, Kamen Rider? Even if the members of F4 and the cast of Meteor Garden aren't getting any younger, newer faces are already coming out but why is it that I can still enjoy the …

So You're Trying To Give The Fate Of Humanity A Rider Kick?!

Image
After rewatching some classic Heisei Kamen Rider series and remembering Gaim around two years ago,  I felt like some Kamen Riders were very atypical in some way. What were they? Here they are.

Warning there are spoilers ahead so read at your own risk!


Kamen Rider Agito 

Kamen Rider Agito's entire season first appeared to be typical. The Lords appeared to be a bigger threat than the Grongi but they seemed very selective about who lives and who dies. The Grongi had more indiscriminate killings than the Lords who were simply trying to keep the balance. Long ago, two Lords were involved in the creation of humanity. One was the Overlord of Light and the Overlord of Darkness who both carried the Yin/Yang symbol. Like Prometheus and Epimetheus, they were involved in the creation of mankind but both of them couldn't agree on anything. One day, Light decided to give the Seed of Agito to humanity with Darkness feared would only cause humankind's destruction.

Taiwanese Dramas: Remakes Of Taiwanese Drama VS. Adaptations From Foreign Shows

Image
While watching Taiwan dramas, I found out that some of those I'm enjoying were not really originals. Again, how many percent of shows I'm enjoying are actually contemporary remakes of older Taiwanese films or localization of foreign shows. That was really the case when I started watching Meteor Garden. I had no idea it was an adaptation or localization of a Japanese series called Hana Yori Dango. The story got localized for the Chinese audience giving everyone Chinese names that were pretty close to the surnames of the F4 in Japanese. Like Tsukasa Doumyoji was renamed as Dao Ming Si because Doumyoji has the same Chinese characters as Dao Ming Si. 
When I found out Meteor Garden was actually an adaptation or localization of Hana Yori Dango, I had mixed feelings about it. Should I still watch it? The more I watched it, the more I thought it was still worth it even if it's not the original source. Meteor Garden had a great cast of actors who really knew how to do their part.…

My Top Ten Favorite Heisei Era Kamen Rider Series

Image
After several shows from Kamen Rider Kuuga up to Kamen Rider Drive, I'm about to write my top ten favorite shows. Here they are from lowest to highest. This list may also surprise how much my opinion has changed in some way. It's time to move on from my personal top ten pics.


10.) Kamen Rider Faiz

It may be surprising to why this made it to this list. But I still give it a low number. Sometimes, I feel like I'm better off watching Power Rangers Time Force than Kamen Rider Faiz. This was known to be Toshiki Inoue's darkest work. So darker and edgier it was that this work really works itself to becoming more depressing than interesting. Sure Timeranger was a darker and edgier series but it didn't feel as bad as this one. The plot of the human vs. Orphnoch war was an interesting attempt to do X-Men's plot into Kamen Rider. It's better in the darker and edgier but sometimes, lighter and softer can be done better. That's why I'd watch Time Force over thi…

The Seven Highly Nightmare Fueled Heisei Era Kamen Rider Series!

Image
In the past, I remembered watching Kamen Rider BLACK and there was a lot of scary stuff in that show. There were the Gorgom monsters which didn't look too much like rubber suit villains. There were a great deal of scary stuff to think about. I can't forget the times I hid under the blanket when there were some scenes that were really generous amounts of nightmare fuel. Its sequel Kamen Rider BLACK RX may have been lighter and softer but some Crisis Empire scenes were still all that scary.
Now it's time to explore the Heisei era Kamen Riders. While some of the Heisei era Kamen Riders are on the lighter and softer side, it wasn't always like that. Sure Super Sentai went more on the fun side since Gaoranger but Timeranger was anything but lighter and softer. I could name at least seven series that really had high amounts of nightmare fuel!

Warning: Reader's discretion is advised. Some Kamen Rider series aren't as warm as friendly as they are today! Read at your ow…

Is Kamen Rider Ghost Trying To Make A Japanese Version Of Danny Phantom?

Image
During the run from Kyoryuger up to Ninninger, I've been skipping them in favor of Kamen Rider. Kamen Rider Wizard was more of a guilty pleasure for Medusa's actress Erina Nakayama. Kamen Rider Gaim fixed a lot of errors that were in Kamen Rider Ryuki. Kamen Rider Drive came in my dream of a police-themed Kamen Rider. Then we presently have Kamen Rider Ghost. While I was expecting a Yuu Yuu Hakusho inspired show, I want to call it as Japan's attempt to try to create their own version of Danny Phantom.
The attempt to make a Japanese version of Danny Phantom seems to have already been already done during Kamen Rider Kiva's run. While watching Kamen Rider Kiva, I can't help but make fun of the show's comical situations. Some fans of the show may call it Twilight meets Kamen Rider. I called it Kamen Rider Danny Phantom because of the existence of Western-style horror movie characters set to a world of rainbows and teddy bears. Kiva had the Fangire World going on w…

Wishful Casting: Kamen Rider Agito's Hojo Toru

Image
While doing a Kamen Rider Agito rewatch, I thought that some cast members weren't all that good. So I'd submit this wishful thinking post with Hojo's casting. So what's my beef?

Sorry Yamasaki, you just aren't cut for Hojo...
Considering that Hojo's meant to be the show's conflict, I thought Jun Yamasaki wasn't really ALL THAT good in carrying that part. Sure, he's meant to heckle or to add conflict to the show but the actor isn't all that good. Here's what Shogo B'Stard has to say about the actor himself:
While I'm talking about the G3 side of the show, I'd like to say that there's really only one thing that I think can be tedious upon Agito rewatches: Houjou's antics. It's really depressing to find out that Inoue considered Houjou his favorite character in the series, but I guess not all that surprising since he does favor asshole characters like Kusaka and Kiriya. (Some would say Gai, but those people should shut up.…

Heisei Kamen Rider Doesn't Get Better Or Worse Every Year

Image
It's stupid to think that anything gets better or worse every year. Kamen Rider has its ups and downs like every franchise. Considering I've basically watched Kuuga, Agito, Ryuki, Faiz, Blade, Hibiki, Kabuto, Den-O, Kiva, Decade, W, OOO, Fourze, Wizard, Gaim, Drive and I'm currently watching Ghost... I'd like to give my thoughts on the Heisei era Kamen Riders. I'd divide the discussion with some set eras to avoid straining the readers.

Part 1 - From Kamen Rider Kuuga to Kamen Rider Decade

The whole start was pretty good with Kamen Rider Kuuga. If you recall, Kamen Rider Black RX became the last Showa Era Kamen Rider. It wasn't popular enough to spawn another series after it. Then we had a couple of Kamen Rider movies but no Kamen Rider series until two years after the death of Shotaro Ishinomori. Naruhisa Arakawa entered big time in his first job as the head writer for any of Toei's Tokusatsu series. The show introduced a new formula where the villains were…

Why I Love Trying To Establish A Possible Connection Between Kamen Rider Kuuga And Kamen Rider Agito

Image
So it's been some time since I've been calling Kamen Rider Decade as something that's almost as awful if not just as awful as Saban's Masked Rider. I'll try to address this new issue called the controversy of the possible connection between Kamen Rider Kuuga and Kamen Rider Agito. Here's something I thought could be possibly used from The Center of Anime and Toku:

You're free to enjoy Agito as a continuation of Kuuga if you so wish, or imagine it takes place in a parallel world, if you so choose. I appreciate this may sound like an asspull, however, so I guess I would say that while Agito takes place '2 years after #4 destroys the Unidentified Lifeforms', it is not a sequel to Kuuga, so take to the show with that in mind.

Some Members Of The Meteor Garden Cast Could've Been Used In A Remake Of "The Unforgettable Character"

Image
After thinking of how Jerry Yan and Barbie Xu-Wang both had the Chin/Liu chemistry, I felt like the Meteor Garden cast could have been for the Qiong Yao Television series. As I love to say it, Jerry Yan as Chin Han's charisma (plus I feel like he's can play as the son of both Chin Han and Liu Xue Hua) and Barbie Xu-Wang would have made a better Yi Ping than Vicki Zhao did. I felt that while watching a few scenes from "The Unforgettable Character" especially it took place in a school in a basketball game, some characters in Meteor Garden could've been used.
So who can play as Jerry's parents? I'd pick either Liu Xue Hua or Zhen Xiu Zhen as the mother and make Chin Han his father in the script. Gu Yin can play as Barbie's mother for a more age appropriate casting reprising her old role. Tang Qi from go from Jerry's majordomo to becoming his paternal grandmother and from Chin Han's grandmother to being Chin Han's mother for more age appropri…

This Song From Lavender Still Fills Me With Tears

Image
Even if Lavender ended with a bad ending, why do I still want to rewatch it? I really love the writing and the musical scores. The opening song was really nice, this ending song is nice but it really has a sad meaning. It's so sad how the baby also dies with the mother. It's really sad to see how two childhood friends get reunited only to have a very short marriage together.

What's sad about this scene is that it's played with Yi Shin dying. Yes she's dying and I really felt sorry for the mother seeing both her daughters die at the end of the drama. I can't blame Leo for crying at the end of the scene. I'd be as sad as him if I were in his place. Tears, more tears and I still remember the sad way Lavender ended in a very predictable way.

Recalling The Time I Finished Watching The TV Series "Lavender"

Image
I remembered how often I wasn't all that fond of sad stories but Lavender was one TV series that had me hooked for a reason. Was it because the main protagonist Yi Shin (played by Tammy Chen) was really that pretty? Maybe. Was it because even if knew it'd turn out to be a tragedy it was well-written with good character development? Maybe. But I can't really give all the explanations in the world why I even bothered to sit through it. But I guess it's a combination of good and bad reasons why I even bothered to finish watching Lavender.
The time I watched Lavender, I remembered a few tears that I cried watching it but not as much as I had them watching Dolphin Bay. I remembered crying in the starting scene when Yi Shin was frequently bullied and how the leading guy Qing Chuan always stood by her. It's sweet childhood that worked itself to adulthood but it's expected to be met in tragedy. Seeing Yi Shin's older sister die was bad enough, seeing her die in th…

How Often Are You Willing To Journey Into Qiong Yao's World?

Image
After reading this entry by Jole Cole, I am wondering is it really that worth it journeying back and forth into Qiong Yao's World or stories that somewhat follow her style? My first exposure to Qiong Yao's World was the 2001 version of Romance in the Rain prior to the 1986 version. While the 2001 version of Romance in the Rain wasn't all that bad but the 1986 version really had some issues. Worse, the novel has been pretty much a story focusing on what goes around comes around.
So much of the stories actually show what's wrong with Chinese culture back then compared to today. Even while watching the 2001 version of Romance in the Rain, it can be shown how double standard was common among men. The story involves Lu Zhen Hua who freely marries then divorces any woman he desires then later, he beats his latest wife Xue Qin up when he discovered she had an affair with a smuggler named Wei Guang Xiong. Even if Xue Qin's affair was not justifiable but she certainly had …

Is It Me Or Is Kamen Rider Ghost Not That Good?

Image
I did like some the episodes of Kamen Rider Ghost but I'll admit that I may still have had a hangover from at least two shows namely Kamen Rider Gaim succeeded by Kamen Rider Drive. Gaim was responsible for filling my void when neither Super Sentai nor Power Rangers could fill it that time. Then there was Kamen Rider Drive which IMO drives miles better than Ninninger (which I felt made dead ninjas glad they're dead) and now it's time for Kamen Rider Ghost.

So what's with Ghost? I really felt like maybe I'm not really liking it, it's not good or is soft spot for Kamen Rider Kiva causing it? While I was excited for yet another what could be a "Danny Phantom" like season but unlike Kiva, I don't feel too excited for Ghost even if it is kind of entertaining. Although I watched Kiva much later in my life but I'll admit, I found myself entertained even by Kiva's first 20+ episodes even if I hear some criticisms.

I feel like I might be expecting t…

What If Jerry Yan And Barbie Xu-Wang Redid All Of The Chin/Liu Qiong Yao TV Series?

Image
After watching some Qiong Yao series both new and old, I decided to reimagine what if Jerry Yan and Barbie Xu-Wang became Qiong Yao cast members after Meteor Garden II. After watching Romance in the Rain's two versions namely the 1986 version and the 2001 version, I really thought Jerry and Barbie should've been Shu Huan and Yi Ping. But what if they became a couple for all six TV series let's say Romance in the Rain happened in 2002, no Meteor Garden II and we'd be having Jerry and Barbie play the characters that were once assigned to Chin Han and Leanne Liu/Liu Xue Hua. These TV drama shows are Romance in the Rain, The Unforgettable Character, After Many Red Sunsets, Seagull's Home, Courtyard and Red Love.

Starting with Romance in the Rain (which I'm most familiar with), the two might get more or less a softened down version of the sadder versions of the story. Barbie as Yi Ping would be able to deliver more or less the same performance as Leanne did in the …

Was Kamen Rider Drive Meant To Be A Robocop Style Kamen Rider Show?

Image
Last year's Tokusatsu year wasn't so good for me with Super Sentai so I really decided to stick through some Kamen Rider. So I'd like to discuss about my road trip with Kamen Rider Drive and how it really affected me as a just flying through Tokusatsu fan.

Hearing that Riku Sanjo would do Kamen Rider AFTER Kyoryuger triggered me the panic button. I felt like that "Oh no! It's going to be a disaster." I've always had some biases towards Kyoryuger and no matter how much its fans think that, "It's the best dinosaur Super Sentai ever." I'd pick Abaranger or Zyuranger anyday. While Kyoryuger was horrid but there was some Kamen Rider Gaim to keep me occupied and entertained so I don't go completely backwards with Toku watching. Then it came, Kamen Rider Drive was one show I wanted to give a chance even after Kyoryuger left a bad taste in my mouth.

You Thought The Leading Lady Would Die In The End But She Didn't!

Image
Are there times you watch a Taiwanese or Korean TV series and you think that the leading lady was going to die? I guess it's because people got too used to tragedies but there are some cases where the dying leading lady got a happy ending instead. Was it meant to be a happy ending all along or did executive meddling change the ending?


100% Senorita had its leading lady Fei Xiang getting some kind of infection that could hit her heart. During that time, she decided that she would use whatever remaining ounce of life she had left to get revenge on Peter. The plot almost made me think that she would die from the infection. So I thought that I wouldn't want to finish it. In the finale, it's revealed that she survived the two operations and came back pretty fine.

My No. 1 Beef Against The Romance In The Rain (2001) Is... NOT ENOUGH CHEMISTRY?!

Image
While watching Romance in the Rain (2001 version) and the 1986 version, I really could raise the issue of NOT ENOUGH CHEMISTRY. I did learn that Qin Han and Liu Xue Hua were the leading stars of "After Many Sunsets", "Romance in the Rain", "Seagull's Home", "The Unforgettable Character", "Courtyard" and "Red Love". That was six whopping series where the chemistry stood out. Now it's time to discuss my bigger problem on the chemistry with Leo Ku and Vicki Zhao.

I'm a fan of Vicki Zhao but I really have all the trouble in the world adjusting to Leo Ku's performance as Shu Huan. Just seeing him as Shu Huan was not my type. Sure the show got some awards and Vicki deserved them. But Leo Ku? I really couldn't help but poke at him too much with his role as Shuhuan. After seeing the 1986 version, I really have to say that as much as I prefer most of the cast of the 2001 version but there was really a serious lack…

Why I'm Glad Meteor Garden III Never Came To Be

Image
When Meteor Garden started out as a 19 episode TV drama based on the Japanese Manga series series known as Hana Yori Dango, it became a big hit. Jerry Yan and Barbie Xu really had a great chemistry, most of the cast was great and even after Meteor Garden ended after two seasons, I still watched their other TV series. Vic Chou improved greatly as an actor, Jerry Yan has a lot of charm as an actor and Barbie Xu cries so beautifully on-screen.

Meteor Garden became so popular for so many reasons. The cast of F4 really make the characters come to life. I always felt like Barbie Xu's acting was really better than Mao Inoue's. Jerry Yan really makes the complicated character of Daoming Si come to life. The rest of the cast was really well done. The actress Zhen Xiu Zhen really knew how to make her character Daoming Feng as the most scary version of Kaede Doumyoji - she made Kaga Mariko look so mild! There was really a lot of good acting that made Meteor Garden memorable. The popular…

How Kamen Rider Gaim Filled My Void During The Post-Gobusters Era Of Super Sentai

Image
It can't be denied that after Gobusters, Kyoryuger came and then came Kamen Rider Wizard. Considering Kamen Rider seasons these days premiere around September to October, then it's normal that Kamen Rider Gaim aired during Kyoryuger's broadcast and ToQGer's broadcast. It would also be normal that Kamen Rider Drive aired during ToQGer's broadcast and Ninninger's broadcast... while Kamen Rider Ghost airs during the second half of Ninninger's broadcast.

Kamen Rider Gaim had a lot of what Power Rangers Samurai, Power Rangers Megaforce, Kyoryuger and ToQGer didn't have which was hard to imitate, high quality writing. I felt the concept of fruits was just stupid so I didn't want to watch it at first. The first episode wasn't all that interesting but I wanted another Battle Royale season and this show gave it to me and it gave me more interesting stuff. Kamen Rider Ryuki could have become better if it wasn't for all that unnecessary executive medd…

Ryuki VS. Gaim: Which Battle Royale Rider Series Is Better?

Image
While watching Kamen Rider as of recent, I thought about two series that did the Battle Royale theme. One was Kamen Rider Ryuki (February 3, 2002 - January 19, 2003) and Kamen Rider Gaim (October 6, 2013 - September 28, 2014). I'll give my few shots on what I thought of them.

The truth is that a Tokusatsu show has these three outcomes. The first outcome is that next series can really get better than the last. That's what I believe happened in between Kamen Rider Kuuga and Kamen Rider Agito. I felt like Agito had a more complex, interesting storyline. THe second is that the series can be just as good as the last. I felt the same happened while I was watching Kamen Rider OOO and Kamen Rider Fourze. Both series were pretty good in their own way though I can't help but still think Kuuga and Agito are better. The third is that the next series can be worse than its predecessor. The successful Kamen Rider Black was replaced by the inferior sequel of Kamen Rider Black RX though I s…