Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Hyakujuu Sentai Gaoranger - First Impressions

Hello once again, people. At this moment, I'm suddenly starting up on watching Gaoranger.

First off, my impression is at least the fight scenes were pretty good from the 1st 2 episodes, the 'attack names' appearing when they attack is kind of similar, but less silly than the ones in Kakuranger. But I really could see shades of Gingaman when they fight. I mean, drag your enemy on the ground and smash them somewhere? Really reminds me of Ginga Yellow's style. Also, Gao White and her 'drop down from tree and scratch' REALLY reminds me of another style by Ginga Pink. Haja Hyakujuuken will be something different, though from what I heard, I probably would expect that they go back to the usual cannon finisher. But a giant sword finisher is a good concept.

As far as character goes, the characters I'll definitely watch out for would be mainly Gaku (Yellow) and Sae (White). From what I heard from that youtube video on Gaku's Engrish, his barrage of Engrish probably won't come until 21, but I'll have the chance to grasp on his other characteristics. I really have no say on Kai and Soutarou, or probably Kakeru, but I'm definitely checking them out.

Since I watched Linkara's HOPR and got to Wild Force, I actually smiled when I see Kakeru trying to 'speak with the Orgs, but fail because they have no heart', since it reminds me of that one section Cole attempted the same to WF Orgs. I'll stop comparing, but I'll know that some things similar would make me smile. No say on who's going to be better, but I've got decent expectation on Kakeru.

The music is... a mixed bag so far. I'm normal with the ending song, but I... don't like the opening. It's just... ugh, hard to describe on how it's like, but I don't like it. But it's stuck in my head like an ear worm! Gah, maybe it'll grow on me, like the Hurricaneger song? Whatever. But of course my favorite piece is whenever they do their role call, the one later used in Gao vs SS. It was TRULY the awesome piece from Gaoranger, and when I write my fic and it's time for role call, I put on that music for more epic feel. It's just THAT good.

I'll keep watching, and who knows, it can impress me very much and I may add further stuffs from Gaoranger in my fic.


Thursday, January 19, 2012

RIP Megaupload

Yeah, I am not kidding when I say this. Megaupload... is dead. The site used to host MANY RAW episodes of Sentai for us all to enjoy. But now it's dead, the founders arrested by US Department of Justice. And you know what's horrifying? This is before that SOPA passed. It happened at January 19th 2012.

This is a bleaky era for us internet user, with government waging war against us, and of course a very bleaky era for Toku fans like us...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

My revised Top 10 Blue Sentai Warriors

Yep, Blogger Come Back!

Ahem, excuse my Gaku/Gao Yellow impression a bit, but I'm back with another Top 10. Previously, I got off with Pink, but now I'm gonna tackle my favorite color: Blue. Here we are, you may once again be pissed at my choices.

10. Yukito Sanjou (Abare Blue)

First off, we get to Sentai's most obvious 'Jerk With A Heart Of Gold'. Yukito got a really nasty mouth, but his heart just doesn't match. Even if he mellowed down, it still stuck until the end (he's charging Ryouga with a lot of money for dragging him to the whole Abaranger mess... yeah, you ain't tricking us with that jerkassery, Yukito, we know you're grateful!). His past is pretty fine, having a dad that overshadows him a little bit big. Also another thing I like about him is that he is not afraid to use his chiropractor skills into some dangerous things like breaking bones... a deadly doctor at that! Though I think that being a fellow medical guy, he'd make a good foil to Mikoto, but well that arc are more reserved for Ryouga. But still, for what he is, I do like Yukito a lot to make him on the 10th spot.

9. Shun Namiki (Mega Blue)

And ninth place, we got the Teen genius Shun. While his development mostly come at the beginning, from that sacrificing his dreams for friends, I like it that he sometimes act like a jerk, but still at times find time to have fun rather than being super uptight like Koichirou. While he mostly ignores Miku, when push comes to shove, he shows that he does care, which speaks a lot for him. I think his greatest moment is during the Nejiranger arc, executing that one plan that later T.J in Power Rangers In Space would repeat, about painting the other Megarangers into blue. Well, if you've got the brain, better use it. And that's probably why he's on the 9th spot.
8. Shouji (Tenma Ranger)

Yes, Dairanger is not yet finished in my watch list, but on 40 episodes, I think I can safely say that Shouji got his place at the 8th. He's a delinquent, looks like it and overall a fun boisterous guy to go with. Kinda like how he tricked Ryou into waking up like the Crying Wolf, although that bit him in the ass later. I will also admit that I like his overarching arc with the Three Gorma Stooges, especially one where it's revealed that the reason he bothered so much was because it reminded him of his young self, especially when the other rangers thinks he's just wasting his time, it does show dedication underneath that rough dude with attitude outlook. As of power, yeah, Gravity/Weight control is nice. I realize that Shouji rarely got into people's Top 10 blue lists, and I'm a sucker for underdogs so... yeah, Shouji really is one underrated guy who deserves his place at 8th.

7. Akira (Blue Mask)

Aah, Akira, one of the Blue warriors that got in my childhood. Always full of energy, wacky, but can be serious at times. It's always good to fight for his mother and his cockiness at times shines when he adds up in teasing. He's got quite the big spotlight after Takeru in Maskman, but when he does, sometimes it gets REALLY dramatic like the Unas saga, when he's possessed and proceeds to kick the rest of the Maskman's asses. 'Twas a scary thought, but this does has a depth in him, which was... unfortunately not so touched after it's revealed. So a combo of funny, short smartass and some dangerous stuffs gives Akira a spot in the 7th place.

6. Nanami Nono (Hurricane Blue)

For the most part, I thought she was overhyped. But once I finished Hurricaneger, I can safely and confidently say... Nanami LIVED UP to that hype of hers. Her 'idiocy' comes up in some innocence and cheeriness that it does balance out from Yousuke's hyper determinator idiocy and Kouta's straight man. The voice delivery really gets into the cheerful part which adds up to her fun, which includes some really funny awesome moments like that one time, after constantly mistaking combat commentaries into food commentaries (complete with 'down' and 'up' montage), into punching a cockpit window after waving 'Hi!'... just to draw scribbles on the face. Of course, behind that are also two things: an unbridled anger when she's pushed way too hard as Furabijou found out (you don't mess with a girl who always wanted a fellow female friend, b****!), and an equally tender heart which does make her cry when things really go to south, like in the finale when she started losing nearly every of her friends. Buut back to cheeriness, I'd say that Nanami completely lived up to my expectation so I give her... #6.

5. Youhei Hama (Blue Turbo)

So yeah you may be asking what the heck is an old school guy being here. Was it because he's my blue rep in my fanfic? Well, in the first glance, you can say that. However, the one thing I'd say that Youhei could've been one of my favorite Turborangers is that for a comic relief guy, he seems to have a lot of pasts sprayed here and there, like when he had his childhood friend move because of a Bouma residing in her house, or his favorite teacher leaving him. Even if he's the comic relief, getting into trouble here and there, I think if I wanna say who's the most tragic of all Turborangers, it would've been Youhei. Not only past losses, he also suffers present losses, like that one time he fell in love with a Bouma girl... and said girl got killed by Jarmin. It's just a pity that it's not him who offed Jarmin. But aside of that, he provided a lot of humors in Turboranger and keeps a cheery face despite his misfortune. That and I do also have nostalgia factors in Turboranger, therefore Youhei gets #5.

4. Joe Gibken (Gokai Blue)

Newest guy with real cool stuff. Joe really got a nice style in swords, and hey, I like swords better than guns. He usually fills in the 'cool guy' role very nicely with his overall cool, aloof attitude which is still different with Marvelous' brand of cool. And I bet he's pretty packed with all those push-ups and sit-ups in his spare time. His backstory did great to me, he symbolizes that there are just some limits good men in a bad company can do, as long as one has their goodness and not tossing them away, they always have a chance for redemption. Which then led to the backstory with Cid. It was quite the sad one that he ends up realizing he couldn't totally save him, but well he found an alternative and closure for it, and he went through it just fine. So for his overall badassery, swordplay despite the pretty boy look, I'd say Joe deserves to be at #4.

3. Saburou Aoyama (Goggle Blue)

And nostalgia hit in again. While he wasn't as much as sticking out like Miki and Kuroda, I'd say Aoyama is a good mix of humor and occasional badassery. He probably has one of the unorthodox weapons (a normal, non-bladed ring), but boy does he know how to use it. His growth as a fighter is a good thing to watch too, the first time he got into a solo fight, he was terribly owned, but around 20 episodes later, he is capable on owning the monster single-handedly. Admittedly, one of the favorite episodes involving him would've been the jetpack episode which also highlights his second desire aside of a hockey player, an inventor. His partnership with Kijima is pretty badass and fun to watch, in both efficiency, humor (mostly provided by Kijima, but he's still responsible) and the drama. And this being the first Sentai I watched EVER, Aoyama probably taught me how to like the color blue. So, without further ado, I'd say he's on the #3 spot... no matter what you say!

2. Ryuunosuke Ikenami (Shinken Blue)

TONOOOO!!! Yeah, who could forget that one hilarious yell. I'd say Ryuunosuke is also quite underrated. Sure, he starts out hyperactive annoying, but take a few episodes and you'll see that he lived up his placement as Takeru's second-in-command and he's just as capable as the rest of the Sentai, with some of his annoyingness toned down to make an admirable character. What was once an annoying type of funny becomes a genuine type of funny, and when he hams up the scene, he hams up nicely. His existence as a hammy hyperactive dude makes a good contrast to the to-the-point, serious Takeru. And when drama kicks in, he showed genuine anguish and even the usually loud and annoying scream can become something really heartwrenching as proven in some of the final episodes, which shows his conflicting loyalty in great detail. He can be dismissed as an annoying dude, but if you can get past that, Ryuunosuke is a dude that is really awesome and deserving #2.

1. Hoji Tomasu (Deka Blue)

And just like the rest of many of you guys, my #1 spot is for Hoji. I mean, what else can I say? He hits on nearly everything well. Badass, Development, Drama, Humor... you name it. Badass, as in his sheer determination and hard work that in a short time, he CAN master boxing and beat the crap out of an underground fighter on drugs while unmorphed. Humor due to his broken Engrish at times which can make things also look awesome, or his constant bickering with Ban, although that proves to be a point for his development later. Development due to his change from a jackass high and mighty perfectionist officer humbled with some failures and despite the bickering, eventually accepting Ban as his 'partner'. Drama for... well, the buttload of dramatic episodes that he carried on, from his friend turned evil, choosing law over love by killing his lover's criminal brother.... The one thing I can say 'pity' is that his partnership with Jasmine was only touched in the very end, I kinda ship those two. But... yeah, I think it's really safe to say that the #1 spot is unchanged from the previous one, it's still Hoji. Super Cool. Perfect.

Welp, thus concludes my list so I hope you had a good time reading! Maybe Red or Yellow are next...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Thoughts about Hurricaneger

Happy New Year! And just to open up New Year, I just finished Ninpuu Sentai Hurricaneger. Overall, my opinion is very positive about it, but I'll just detail over it anyway...

First off, I gotta question how the series is spelled. Is it Hurricaneger or Hurricanger? (no 'e' between the 'n' and 'g') Well I'm just gonna go with Wikipedia and call it the former. I'm not gonna go over the plot summary since I say everyone else did a good job in covering it.

At any rate, many call this a spiritual successor to Liveman. So yeah, not only we got Academy students, start out with three members, the blue one is a chick and appears to be the 'smartest' (Megumi was the top class student, Nanami got a grade up first than the rest even if she started out at the bottom like the rest), they're joined with two more members eventually, the villains has some evaluation system, etc. It managed to be different and not just a carbon copy with Liveman set on the new age. For instance, rather than focusing on brains and smarts, it's more on the ninja in Hurricaneger. Then, while in Volt, evaluation system is like a serious business, in Jakanja, only Furabijo did that and it wasn't taken seriously. And lastly, back then, Tetsuya and Jun'ichi were immediate allies and obviously good guys from the first time they met. Ikkou and Isshu were a lot more antagonistic at start, and weren't accepting at first, before they realize their destiny and be more friendly. So it's a lot different.

Plot-wise, there's quite a bit silly moments here and there, and many would say this could be lighter than the already dark Liveman. However, I do say that once the finale hit in, it took a dive in dark and edgy... seriously, allies dropping like flies and the reactions were really spot on. Especially when it comes to Shurikenger and his master (and later Ikkou and Isshu, even if it's rectified in the end), the reactions coming from the Hurricanegers were pretty spot on and conveys quite the emotion.

Now as of characters, Yosuke pretty much standardizes the 'idiot hero' we've seen quite a lot and the one thing he develops from is probably his skills. He is still the brash guy, just also heroic. Nothing much to say. Kouta has some familial stuffs which got him in trouble at times, sometimes with his grandma, sometimes with his sister, but I like it that he's pretty calm most of the time. But... well...

Then there's Nanami. My God, people hypes her like hell and my opinion says... she pretty much lives up to that hype. No I'm not talking about how hot her actress is (Nao Nagasawa, although I do admit she's pretty hot), but I do like that she really adds up the girly touch in the team, and her personality is kind of a cheery, bubbly girl done right, added with some badass moments AND funny ones (like that one time with her taking her cooking for Gozen-sama into serious business levels). I dunno, maybe it's her voice that got it good. Although this isn't touched on, I kinda liked on how she evolved from being a lowly enka singer into a full blown pop star idol. Unfortunately, we never get a filler to show her evolution into this, would be a delight to see. But well, too bad. Also I do say that when Hurricaneger takes levels in darkness in the end, I really got caught onto how Nanami got really sad and expressed her fears. But overall I could say that Nanami definitely has the right to be one of my favorite Blue senshi out there...

... Wait, there are more heroes? Oh! Right, we're getting into that.

Next we get into Ikkou and Isshu. They at first got their no-nonsense attitude, and I find their development really beautiful. Beginning Ikkou/Isshu were totally different with final Ikkou/Isshu, seriously. Their brotherly bond is great, and I can't help but pity them with their dad. My God, I think I get the feeling that Ikki (Their father) is a gigantic asshole... Though it bugs me that despite admitting that their dad is pathetic, Isshu still clinged onto his memory one more time (the Kirai Maru episode). Why cling to a man who is known to be pathetic? The Ikkou-Manmaruba rivalry also adds up to the seriousness factor, and I do say it's pretty good.

There's then Shurikenger, who seems to be hailed as a gigantic badass thanks to Engrish speaking, disguises, etc. However, I'm just normal with him. His Engrish can be hilarious and one way to detect him, but I do like his final moments when he really gets serious in facing Sundahl. Lots of emotions there, and not taken for hilarity.

Now villains. I do say that the villains may look typical, but most of them prove to be different under certain circumstances. Tauzant look normal type of 'overlord sitting on his throne too many times', but his cruelty does shine when he grafted that one gun to Satorakura. Chuuzubou is too short lived, but did his part well (and once again, RIP to his voice actor Daisuke Gouri who died at 2010). Sargain is a decent villain, and once again I hear a familiar voice of Yoshinori Okamoto (Buuba, Dr. Ashura) once again giving his recognizable "Onoreee!" or "Koshakunaaa!" yells. Manmaruba can be scary with his Space Scorpion skill, and that's all I'm gonna say. Satorakura is the hyena 'laugh-all-the-time' type which is decent, but Shimada Bin's trademark crazy laugh just sells it. Wendinu sounds alluring and her obsession with beauty can be hilarious. Sundahl presents himself as some sort of noble villain, but is also pretty quick to show that he is also a scumbag on his own level. Then there's Furabijo. Sorry to say, but I don't quite like her and find her rather annoying. If Linkara says Vypra of PR Lightspeed Rescue got emotionless actress, I really can say the same to Furabijo. She tried hard to be 'cute', but she ends up to be dry most of the time, the emotions in her voice sound kinda lacking emotion. While she sometimes get some effective moments, I think I feel that her voice just eclipsed it... ugh.

The battle is at times pretty okay, it was good, but I don't think there's something super spectacular to note. The music is something that grew on me. I recall that first time, I don't like the opening due to the "Shuushuu to Sanjou!" part, but overall it grew on me and I like it for real. The instrument helps too. The instrumental version when fighting were also pretty good, could be one of my favorite tracks after Flashman's battle themes. And lastly... the ending. Man, so kickass! Of course, it's by Hironobu Kageyama, and I like JAM Project.

Overall, it's not my top favorite or something, but Hurricaneger is a solid Sentai series and lived up the hype of many.