Thursday, September 30, 2010

Kikaida 50

for my 50th post this month (this will taper off, what with working again and all now) I thought I'd talk a little about Jinzo Ningen Kikaida.

this is where I first learned of Kikaida.  it's a nice little article telling the readers of Famous Monsters how popular the show is in Japan.  there are lots of photos of our hero and some of the early villains (Carmine Spider, Green Mantis/Mammoth, Blue Kong, etc).

due to the main thrust of the issue, I thought that Kikaida was similar to Ultraman, a giant hero defending Japan against various other giant monsters.  several years later I learned he was not that, but a human sized hero defending Japan against robots of the Dark.

it wasn't until the 90s that I actually got to see an episode of the show (and the sequel, Kikaida 01).  these were unsubtitled and were a lot of fun.  by then, I had learned Kikaida had been shown subbed in Hawai'i and was a huge hit there.  naturally, I wondered if it would ever be shown again, in the age of VCRs.

well, to the surprise of many, it was! 

the subs turned out to be only adequate and the sequel was never re-aired.  the quality of the tapes tended to be less than stellar, but at least I could understand what was going on.

and again, several years later, Generation Kikaida brought the show back, both shows in fact.  then released them on DVD with loads of great extras (most by August Ragone).

I never would have thought it possible in 1976 that I would ever have seen this show.

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