3 RIDERS VS GENERAL DARK (Or, “Yes, People Knew About Kamen Rider In 1984″)

Talk about rare finds! A couple of years ago, I’d heard of this US Kamen Rider fan-film featuring Oriental Cinema‘s Damon Foster, fandom pillar August Ragone and (apparently) some suit-work by Steve Wang, but I’d believed it lost to the ages. Shows what I know, because it’s been posted on YouTube in two parts for your viewing pleasure! Say what you will about the quality but damn if this isn’t impressive for its time!

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An Open Question To Plex

Hey there, Plex.

Remember when you guys created Victory Mars or Ryuuseioh? Do you have any recollection of intricacies that ignited the fantasies of the kids everywhere (in Japan)? Because lately, now more than ever, I’m curious as to whether or not you’ve any idea what you’re doing anymore with these Super Sentai mechs. Especially when seeing this latest contraption for Goseiger….

….and realizing that, holy Tezuka, you’ve truly sunk to the bottom of the barrel: You’re actually ripping off of yourselves.

There have been people who believe that Goseiger is just a buffer year for Toei, flying under the radar just enough to make money for next year’s series. That would make sense, given its incredibly bland presentation, but look at Go-Onger‘s utter travesty of mech design, or Shinkenger‘s Samurai Haoh (which ultimately got spammed and took away from my initial excitement in its appearance). This isn’t just a case of bad execution; there’s no challenge anymore. No innovations. Nothing to make them more than lumps of interlocking plastic that you’ll eventually sell off on eBay. The art of Super Sentai mech design has dumbed down.

The sad part isn’t that Plex and Bandai are going to get away with this, nor is it that there’s really nothing I can do about it, save me getting a job within their ranks. It’s the fact that once again, there’s something that used to be creative and awe-inspiring that has been simplified where it didn’t need to be. I know it sounds dramatic, but I do sort of feel bad for the future in that case.

Rather than the inner child who grew up playing with the likes of the Galaxy Mega and Oh-Blocker, it’s the aspiring designer in me that just wants to know, “When the hell is it going to get fun again?”

Kamen Rider: Remastered!!

Ever wanted to see the Original 98-episode Kamen Rider TV series but lacked time or money for it? Well good news for you guys and gals…if you’re in Japan anyways. Starting this October, Kamen Rider will be broadcast on Toei Channel in a brand new HD Remastered Edition!

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According to Mainichi News, during an event hosted by Hiroshi Fujioka (Kamen Rider 1 himself!), it was announced that Kamen Rider will start broadcasting on Toei Channel on Mondays at 4PM, starting October 5th. The series will be touched up from the original 16mm prints, with all dust and scratches fixed up, to create a new digital HD master. I’m honestly getting a Dragon Ball Kai vibe from this so don’t be too surprised if a few months from now, we hear about a Kamen Rider Special Edition Blu-Ray Memorial Box.

(Now here’s a quick edit and an interesting thing to note: Patrick Macias mentioned that there’s been a standard definition remaster before…which actually looked spectacular. The first DVD releases were using touch-ups of the old 16mm prints as well but they hadn’t been digitized. Looking elsewhere, apparently there have been complaints about the audio bitrate or something along those lines. With this in mind, this could either mean that there isn’t much tech involved here, saved for audio restoration and finishing touches, and this is indeed just part of the Anniversary Project……or further evidence of an excuse for Kamen Rider Blu-Rays. Take your pick, I’ll have to do a comparison when the series starts airing.)

It seems like NOW Toei is hung up on the Heisei Rider 10th Anniversary. How do I figure? Firstly, with Double being touted as part of the “Heisei Kamen Rider 10th Anniversary Project”. Same goes for the Toei Channel broadcast of Kamen Rider Dragon Knight, also happening in October. That’s right, Kamen Rider Dragon Knight is going to get the Japanese Power Ranger treatment: Japanese actors dubbing over the American cast, with some voices from the original show coming back. In this case, Satoshi Matsuda, the original actor of Kamen Rider Knight, will be coming back to voice Wing Knight.

My only problem, shouldn’t they have done this with, y’know, the program that was designed to be an anniversary project? Regardless, this is an awesome thing that they’re doing with the HD Remaster. Maybe a fansubber group that is A.) Competent and B.) NOT TV-Nihon (Sorry guys, I’m just not fans of your work) can take a crack at this for the sake of the new wave of fans out there. That or, lord forbid, Bandai ups this on the forthcoming Bandai Channel when it goes live. In the meantime, time to break out the scarf and belt and run around in the rock quarry in celebration.

Passing of the Torch (in a Perfect no Sekai)

Instead of bringing you Friday ACE this week, I figured I’d post the following:

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On /m/ (where apparently, they know I roam there enough to refer to me as /m/ike Dent), somebody posted this short story to compliment the above artwork. It’s actually kind of cool so I figured I’d post it here for those not brave enough to tread through 4chan.

“Wait, you don’t have to go! Please, you still can have more episodes!” Cries Cure Peach, as the tears stream down her face.
“I’m sorry, but my journey continues elsewhere, while another’s journey begins here,” Decade says, as he wipes a tear from her eye. He turns to Red, who extends a brofist. Decade bumps it.
“Well, it was fun. I guess… I’ll see you in a few weeks?” Red says.
“I’ll see you when I see you. Take care of yourself,” Decade replies. Decade turns to W, who sits side legged on his bike.
“This is all yours now. It can be rough sometimes. Some will hate you, kick you, spit on you, but you keep your head up. Your the Rider now,” Decade says, as he extends his hand for a handshake. W looks down and reaches to connect, but Decade quickly lifts his hand, and lets out a little laugh. He hops on his bike, and starts it.
“Please, don’t go!” Cure Pink shouts, falling to her knees, crying even harder now.
“Sorry. I’m just a passing through Kamen Rider.”
Decade’s bike roars to life as he rides into the sunset.

As Decade’s bike flies across the open field, a similar blue colored fellow pulls up next to him.
“Where you heading?” Asks Diend.
“Same place you are, I figure,” Decade replies. Between the two bikers, a black clad Rider pulls in, his red scarf billowing in the wind.
“Follow me,” says the Rider.
“Where to?” Decade asks.
“Where all Riders who have finished their missions go. It’s time to rest, boys. It’s time to rest.”
The three Riders continue towards the sun, until they cannot be seen no more.

Cue opening theme. The end.

After this, I don’t need to wait til December!