Posted on Leave a comment

Kamen Ranger’s Ramblings: Clueless Godzilla Scientists

Do Scientists In Godzilla Know What They’re Talking About?

We all know this trope. Some unprecedented event is taking place – be it a natural disaster, alien invasion, monster attack or all three combined  – and there’s a scientist character on hand to explain to the rest of the cast how/why this has happened and you just know they’re making it all up.

In some cases, as with several Godzilla movies, they confirm they don’t know for sure, the most glaring example of this is in Godzilla vs SpaceGodzilla in which Dr Chinatsu Gondo proposes two theories to explain SpaceGodzilla’s existence without having any way to verify either. The theories involve black holes and white holes, neither of which are anywhere close enough to earth to make this plausible, which has led me to this conclusion: Scientists in Godzilla have no idea what they’re talking about.

It makes sense if you think about it. Even years after giant monsters are an established presence in these films they still know very little about them. I’d wager that any scientist with the great misfortune to find themselves in a situation involving a giant monster just makes up their theories and recommendations as they go along to keep their job.

I’d love to make a monster movie comedy where we follow the scientist in charge of studying the monster and coming up with ways to combat it and through a series of misunderstandings and hi-jinks ends up accidentally defeating the monster but then has to live with being constantly brought in to deal with monster attacks that he has no more idea how to stop than the intern getting him coffee.

The only scientist that comes to mind in Godzilla that knew what he was doing was Dr Serizawa and even then he was only an expert in killing lots of things horribly, oh and oxygen. Even Professor Yamane doesn’t know what Godzilla’s deal is for sure, though his theory is at least a little more grounded than Gondo’s Space Godzilla theory.

In short I’ve rumbled the racket that scientists in Godzilla movies have had going for years, they’re all hacks and frauds who have no idea what they’re doing. But let’s face it. It’s not like any of us could do any better.

What would you make up to explain a monster’s existence? Would you even stick around long enough? Let us know in the comments.

Posted on Leave a comment

Kamen Rider Build: Episode 2 Review

This episode did things I wasn’t expecting it to do. It’s not often that we get to see this sort of episode right after the first. Generally, I expect an episode 2 to introduce a new character, start their story arc and/or carry on the plot from episode 1; they took a lot of risks with this episode and they paid off magnificently.

Build looks like it’s going to be a great series. The concept is unique, the characters are likeable and the action scenes are perfect. I know that Ex-Aid seems like it could be one of the best series so far but I think Build will overtake it. The Neo-Heisei era is nearly over but, judging by the quality of Build and Ex-Aid, it looks like it’s going to go out with a bang!

The episode revolves around Ryuuga finding out his girlfriend, Kasumi, is being turned into a Smash. We also get to learn why Ryuuga was arrested in the first place and what led up to it. After some epic motorbike scenes, we meet Kasumi in her Smash form and we get to see an epic fight scene, leading to her defeat. I expected them to rescue her (like the Smash we’ve in the show so far) and make her into a side character; instead, she was killed off right in front of Ryuuga, unsaveable because of a previously established illness. You could argue that the “my girlfriend is dead” plot was copied off Hiiro from the previous season, however, in my opinion, it was done better here. With Ex-Aid, Saki had been dead for a while before Hiiro’s first appearance. While it is a tragic backstory, we don’t get to learn too much about Saki beforehand. Since Kasumi was introduced and killed off in this episode alone, we get to know more about her, making her death more meaningful and making us feel more sympathetic for Ryuuga.

I didn’t want to talk about this episode too much because it’s a fantastic episode that you should watch it yourself. If they take the same risks in the rest of the series, then we’re going to be in for a great series. Let’s just hope that they don’t give up after a few episodes…

What do you think is the most memorable death scene in Kamen Rider? Let us know in the comments!

Posted on Leave a comment

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger: Episode 29 Review

This week in Kyuranger, we find out what happened to the team on the Orion and we run into a new ally, so follow me and let’s talk about episode 29.

The episode opens much like any other, with a run down of the past few weeks. To recap what is happening to our team of saviours, we have Lucky, Garu, Hammie, Balance and Kotaro on present day Earth trying to bring Naga back to his usual, emotionless self, and the rest of the team travelling back in time to find out why Jark Matter are still a present threat even after Tsurugi defeated Don Armage over 300 years ago.

The opening scenes show the team on Earth looking over a crashed and beaten Orion ship. With no clue what happened to crew, Lucky takes it upon himself to travel to the past on his own, leaving Hammie, Balance, Kotaro and Garu to deal with Naga. After Lucky arrives in the past, he is greeted by the sight of his fallen team mates and a strange looking man. After a brief fight with a death worm, it is revealed this strange looking man is actually Orion, who stayed on Earth after he sealed Tsurugi on the Argo.

Tsuguri has a quiet moment with Orion and speaks of how Lucky could be even more of a legend that he is. After this, we are informed that Orion has a son in the Leo (Shishi) constellation; just who is this son and have we met him in the series so far? The team all agree with Tsuguri that fighting alongside Lucky is the right choice and they vow that they will take down Don Armage, no matter the cost.

An all out fight ensues with Lucky taking the charge against the Vice-Shoguns. Lucky and Orion fight extremely well together, even catching the eye of Houou Soldier. Suddenly, during the battle, a bright spark appears over the heads of Lucky and Orion. What could this be? Could it feature again soon? The team take down all but one of Don Armage’s best. Will this change the present day, and, if it does anything, what will happen to Naga?

With his Jark Matter subordinates humiliated, the dark lord himself, Don Armage, arrives. Our heroes fire an All Star Crash to defeat him once and for all and the scene is silent until Armage launches a small attack, piercing Lucky’s abdomen and seemingly killing him. As Lucky hits the floor, the shogun himself takes corporeal form, approaches the Kyurangers and reveals his true form.

What is going to happen to Lucky? What was the bright light and will Ryu Commander ever take things seriously? Stay tuned for episode 30 of Uchu Sentai Kyuranger!

Posted on Leave a comment

Pro wrestler John Morrison shares his honest opinion on Jason David Frank (JDF)

In a recent interview with RealSport, professional wrestler John Morrison (also known as John Hennigan, Johnny Impact, Johnny Mundo and others) was asked what it was like working with Power Rangers legend, Jason David Frank on the the upcoming Ninjak vs. Valiant Universe and the pro wrestling sensation did not hold back.

Ninjak vs. Valiant Universe is the story of Ninjak, a mighty warrior thrust into a gauntlet of Valiant’s most formidable heroes for a bloodstained battle royale torn from the pages of the largest independent superhero universe in comics. Those that have continued to follow the work of JDF since Power Rangers will know about Frank’s work with Valiant Comics, portraying their character, Bloodshot. Frank’s Bloodshot character is due to face off with Morrison’s Eternal Warrior in Valiant’s live-action webseries, due for release later this year.

When asked, Morrison stated that he was “really excited for Ninjak vs. The Valiant Universe” and expected a trailer release for the series soon. Having been asked for his opinion on the legendary Power Rangers actor, Morrison spoke very kindly of Jason David Frank, gushing that he was “super talented” and that the pair had become “become legitimate bros” since filming together.

Later in the interview, Morrison was also asked about JDF’s professional wrestling aspirations. He replied that Frank was “a fan of pro wrestling, he loves the business and he’d like to be a part of it.” Morrison went on to say that they were planning a Tag Team Match for JDF’s wrestling debut, either for Booker T’s Reality of Wrestling promotion or for Global Force Wrestling, John Morrison’s current employer. To conclude, Morrison put to bed the idea that JDF had WWE Championship aspirations, noting that he didn’t think he “wants to be a full time pro wrestler by any means” but that as a life-long entertaininer, JDF would find it “fun to do a match.”

You can listen to John Morrison’s complete comments about Jason David Frank here:

Are you excited for Jason David Frank as Bloodshot in Ninjak vs. The Valiant Universe? What do you think of Morrison’s comments? Let us know in the comment section below.

Posted on Leave a comment

Kamen Rider Ex-Aid Series Review: The Making of a Masterpiece

With September’s debut of our latest Kamen Rider series, Kamen Rider Build, Ex-Aid and the other doctor Riders lose their spotlight as our main masked heroes. Kamen Rider Ex-Aid’s run from late 2016 was definitely a memorable addition to the Heisei-era line up, but was it a good series?

Absolutely, it was. Kamen Rider Ex-Aid was a phenomenal series, and I would argue for it being one of the best Kamen Rider series in the entirety of the Heisei-era, from Kuuga through to now. But what made it that way? There are many factors that play into a television series of any genre that make it “good.” Ex-Aid had these qualities in spades. As the article goes on, I intend to delve in to all of the features that distinctly make Ex-Aid shine as a series, and why I believe that even in the future it will hold up as one of the best Kamen Rider series in general.

Characters: The Kamen Rider franchise is an exceptionally character driven franchise, and Ex-Aid was certainly no exception. It had a whole cast of colourful characters with very different personalities and motivations that made them all a joy to watch on screen. From our main protagonist, Emu Hojo, being the true force for good, with an indomitable spirit and an unyielding drive to help those in need and who are sick, all the way to Masamune Dan attempting to play god and take over the world via video game. What all the characters of the main cast of Ex-Aid have in common is one of the most crucial thing a series needs to have to maintain engagement: Development.

The show has been compared to Gaim for its number of Riders that the series portrays, but what this series did so much better than Gaim was character development. This has to do with the fact that it wasn’t just a select few Riders who actually got development… it was all of them. The transformation of Emu from a somewhat timid, inexperienced doctor all the way to him becoming this incredibly strong, confident man who would save the world, seeing Taiga overcome the horrors of his past and come to terms with himself and his actions, Hiro’s internal conflict of betraying the team at the cost of his deceased girlfriend and how he wrestled with the decision and the manipulation of Masamune.

Even the development of our villains was fantastic. In the early episodes, I thought Parado and Graphite in particular were very weak characters with poor writing that added little in the ways of enjoyment. Yet, by the end of the series, not only was I rooting for both of them, but come Graphite’s death and Parado’s near death experience and change from a villain to a full-blown good guy, it was emotional. I had seen the characters grow and change, for the better. What started with clichéd and dry writing finished in incredible form, and it’s one of the things that truly made this series so satisfying to watch.

Forms: Another one of the enjoyable things of this series were the Rider forms. When the designs for the 4 first Riders were revealed before the season aired, I admit I was hesitant. “Kamen Riders with anime eyes and hair?” I thought. The design was initially a big turn off. However, from the second I watched that first episode, saw the suits in action and how they tied into the theme of the show, I was in love. Again, like Gaim there are a lot of forms in this show. Emu’s transformation line, Hiro’s, Kiriya’s, Kuroto’s, and so on. There’s a large cast of main Riders, including the villain, and they all have multiple forms (save for Poppy being the exception.) Yet, what this show manages to do with them is keep them both interesting and entertaining.

One of the best examples of this is best seen in one of my all-time favourite forms from the series; Mighty Bros. XX.  From its debut I loved it. I love the theme of co-operative gaming, the clear influence from the Super Mario Brothers, the colours, the design, even the Gashat. Despite this, the initial run of the form was a mere 9 episodes before the show moved on to a better and more powerful form, as is the progression of Kamen Rider. Come episode 40 and 41, which are (in my opinion) two of the best episodes in the entirety of the series, the form that we thought was benched makes an electrifying, well written, and emotional return. With the “death” of Parado and Emu using this moment to teach Parado that there’s more to being villain and instead of playing the game to beat Emu, he could play the game with Emu, Parado is resurrected through the Mighty Brothers XX Gashat, and the two of them have some of the best fights in the series. They brought this form back not just to revitalize and old form, or to sell more DX Mighty Brothers Gashat toys, but because it was relevant to the story. They took something as simple as changing back to an earlier form, and made it one of the most exciting and impactful moments in the entirety of Ex-Aid – no doubt a mark of both brilliant storytelling, and effective use of the Riders forms.

Plot: The plot of Ex-Aid was, in my opinion, the worst part of the series but that’s certainly not to say that it was bad. Ex-Aid respected the plot. They made it simple, they stuck to it, but the simplicity of the plot is what allowed for so much freedom with the characters. It was a very basic concept of “bad guy tries to take over, heroes stop who they think the bad guy is, true bad guy reveals himself and they have to face and even bigger threat.” Simple as that. We started with Kuroto Dan as the main villain and CEO of the shady Genm Corp. He had the wicked Bugsters on his side, and seemed content with infecting and simply killing who he wanted. Yet, shy of the half-way mark, it’s revealed the Kuroto was a mere fall-guy for the main villain: his father, Masamune Dan.

With Masamune we’re given a true tyrant; a man bent on having the world bow before him as he acts as their god. With his ability to control time and the souls of the people killed in his world encompassing game, I’m drawn to imagery of Greek Mythology. Even the name of his Rider form is that of the Greek Titan and father of the gods, Chronus. He was a truly dangerous villain, who drove our heroes, and even some of our side villains, to their absolute limits in their battles with him. He broke them down, manipulated them, and demoralised them incredible effectively on his way to world domination. However, even with his fusing of the Gamedeus virus and the loss of his humanity in its entirety, our rag-tag team of doctors and developers proved to be more than a match, defeated him, and saved the day, all while effectively tying up individual character plot lines and development arcs. Yes, it was the simplicity of the story, and the writer’s willingness to not diverge from the simplicity that gave the show its freedom to be so character driven. That is more than okay with me.

Overall: If you haven’t watched Ex-Aid… Do it. With everything I’ve mentioned in the article, the series truly stands out as one of the best written and presented Kamen Rider series in the entirety of the show’s life span. I was one of the few who actually liked last year’s Kamen Rider Ghost, but this show was a refreshing and welcome addition after the production nightmare of Ghost. Up there with Drive, Faiz, and Kuuga, Kamen Rider Ex-Aid is a modern marvel of the Kamen Rider franchise, deliverying incredible characters, and gripping and engaging plot, and more than enough action to satisfy even the nit-pickiest of tokusatsu and action fans. While it does have its weak points, as every show will inevitably have, but they are few and far between, and in no way are enough to detract from the sheer quality presented by Kamen Rider Ex-Aid.

I’d rate it an easy 9/10, maybe even a 10/10.

How did you enjoy Kamen Rider Ex-Aid? Did you think that the series was as good as I made it out to be? Did you actually dislike it? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook/Twitter.

[Photo Credit: malecoc on Deviant Art]

Posted on Leave a comment

Why Kanpai Senshi After V Is A Must Watch Toku

Kanpai Senshi After V (or Cheers Warriors After V) is a tokusatsu parody series that started it’s first season in 2014, it’s second season (Shin Kanpai Senshi After V) in 2015 and is set to have a third season and movie after a successful crowdfunding that same year.

More specifically, the show parodies Super Sentai and focusses on the aftermaths of the battles rather than the battles themselves. In this world, our team of heroes is an official body much like Gorenger, Sun Vulcan and Ohranger. Many of the team, Pink especially, treat it like a run of the mill civil service job.

Each episode focuses on the after work drinking parties of our heroes as they discuss the day’s events or just things about their jobs that they’ve noticed, like how monsters have zips on their backs or someone wires pyrotechnics up in their battlefields before they get there.

The show also features the villains of the rangers who staff the restaurant that our heroes start the night in and, once that’s closed, follow them to the karaoke bar they frequent. We get to see how the villain’s commander isn’t really so evil despite his insistence and how he can genuinely care for his foot soldiers and even, to an extent, the rangers.

As a tokusatsu parody series and doubly so as a Super Sentai parody, it’s impossible to talk about After V for any length of time without comparing it to Hikonin Sentai Akibaranger which started in 2012. Personally, I prefer After V to Akibaranger (and I know saying that is tantamount to sacrilege). I find the “in universe” setting to be better for parodying the genre as opposed to the “real world” one Akibaranger started out with.

There’s only so much you can do with the premise of: “Hey this is a thing Sentai does a lot” and Akibaranger unfortunately uses that ad nauseam; it’s not that there aren’t plenty of jokes to be made with it but it can get a little stale. After V, on the other hand, takes the world implied by the genre itself and uses the premise of “What if Rangers were real and it was a job people could do?” This allows the show to take advantage of a much more diverse range of jokes in the process, like Pink’s constant skipping on the bill, for example. The humour comes not from them pointing out characters or things we recognise but by putting absurd characters like Sentai heroes and villains in a mundane situation and having them talk about their battles like it’s a day job.

If you’re an older fan of Sentai and/or Power Rangers or just a fan of the older shows like I am, this series will have you in stitches. While it’s not as ambitious or polished as Akibaranger was that works in it’s favour. It has a good low budget appeal that exaggerates the low budgets of the Sentais of yesteryear while still being respectful to the source material. Kanpai Senshi After V is subbed my MegaBeast Empire and I would highly recommend it to everyone.

What did you think of Kanpai Senshi After V? How do you think it compares to other comedy tokusatsu shows?

Posted on 4 Comments

UPDATE: English Localisation Confirmed For Kamen Rider Climax Fighters

Bandai Namco have confirmed that their newest PS4 fighting game, Kamen Rider Climax Fighters, will be localised throughout Asia, with an English language localisation in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and the Philippines. Although there are currently no plans to bring the game to the West, the English support means that it will be easier to play for those English speakers who import the game.

These announcements were made in the latest trailer release, available via the Bandai Namco Japan YouTube page.

Update Sept 11th, 2017:

For those that were skeptical about the news, a trailer was released today by Bandai Namco Entertainment Asia. The trailer was the same as the Japanese counterpart released on Saturday but featured subtitles in English, as well as fine print confirming that the game would be “released in English”.

riderclimaxeng

You can view the full trailer here:

Kamen Rider Climax Fighters will be released in Japan on 7th of December for the PlayStation 4.

[Source: Bandai Namco Entertainment Asia]

Posted on Leave a comment

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger: The Story So Far

Uchu Sentai Kyuranger is, at the time of writing, the 41st installment of the long running Super Sentai series and is in some ways quite a departure from what we’ve come to expect from Sentai, while still retaining familiar codes and conventions. This is little doubt, due in some way to the involvement from Bandai of America during this season’s development, that this series will become the next Power Rangers series, after Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel in 2018. As we’re more than halfway through the show’s run, it seems appropriate to recap the events leading up to this point in case some people have forgotten or not caught and episode of the series yet.

Kyuranger is set in a future where the evil Space Shogunate Jark Matter had conquered the galaxy and now rules it with an iron fist. The only force that can hope to oppose Jark Matter and it’s leader Don Armage are the ultimate saviors Uchu Sentai Kyuranger.

These Rangers are: Lucky (Shishi Red), Stinger (Sasori Orange), Garu (Ookami Blue), Balance (Tenbin Gold), Champ (Oushi Black), Naaga (Hebitsukai Silver), Hammie (Chameleon Green), Raptor 283 (Washi Pink), Spada (Kajiki Yellow) Shou (Ryu Commandor), Kotaro (Koguma Skyblue) and finally Tsurugi (Houou Soldier).

Kyuranger is structured in smaller mostly self contained arcs so to properly recap the show’s story it’s best to do so on an arc by arc basis. These arcs are:

The Assembly Arc

The first segment of the show is an arc in which the incomplete team of rangers (Lucky, Hammie, Garu, Spada and Champ by the end of episode one) must locate and recruit the remaining rangers. This takes up the first 5 episodes and features Eriedrone as the ranger’s most recurring villain. For the most part this goes smoothly, however, Stinger briefly aligns with Jark Matter in his capacity as a spy which throws off the plans of the other rangers. The nine rangers are eventually united and Eriedrone is defeated, bringing us on to the next arc.

Kyuranger Seiza Blaster

The Assassin Arc

The second arc involves the rangers battling Ikagen and Madako, two assassins sent by Don Armage to kill the Kyurangers, who are now operating mainly on earth for budgetary reasons. They aim to to solve the mystery of Don Armage’s interest in the planet. Shou’s two ranger forms are debuted in this arc as well, the first being the imperfect Ryu Violet and the second being his permanent ranger form Ryu Commander. The quest to recover the three Kyutama needed to summon the Argo ship begins in this arc also and provides a more solid goal for the team beyond simply saving the universe. The arc ends with Ikagen’s death and runs from episode 6 to episode 12.

Kyuranger Ryu Voyager

The Scorpio Arc

The Third arc focuses on Stinger, his brother, Scorpio, and, to a lesser extent, Champ. The two rangers leave the Orion in order to operate more independently and to track down and apprehend Scorpio, who now works for Jark Matter. The Argo plot is continued in this arc with the Kyutama needed to summon it changing hands a few times. Kotaro leaves for training at Rebellion HQ and Champ is destroyed while defending Stinger. There is also a crossover episode with DekaRed and Gavan Type G in an alternate universe. The arc concludes with the climactic death of Scorpio and the return of Kotaro and Champ. The Argo is summoned and Ohtori Tsurugi (Houou Soldier) is revived. This arc covers episodes 13 to 21.

Kyuranger Kyutama Set SP

The Phoenix Arc

The following arc is much shorter and serves to affirm the new team dynamic, introduce more lore in the universe’s history and establish a new goal for the rangers to achieve. Tsurugi and the others clash initially but quickly come to respect each other and work together as a team. Tsurugi reveals that, in the past, he believed he had killed Don Armage which sets up the following arc’s driving force. Three new villains are also introduced to antagonize the rangers. They are the Vice Shoguns and are much higher ranked than previous villains thus showing their progress so far. This arc lasts between episodes 22 and 23.

The Time Travel / Hebitsukai Metal Arc

The current arc involves traveling back in time to discover the secret to Don Armage’s survival. However, the rangers must also deal with a now evil Naaga, who has joined forces with a Vice Shogun to gain the emotions he’s been trying to develop since his introduction. He also debuts a new evil ranger form, Hebitsukai Metal, making use of the Dark Seiza Blaster and Dark Kyutama. The team decide, therefore, to split in two; one half will travel to the past while the rest stay behind to rescue Naga. This arc began with episode 24 and is still running, at the time of writing, to the current episode, 28.

That’s it for now! Kyuranger is not over yet, thankfully, and the current arc has yet to conclude after introducing some incredibly interesting backstory and lore. Furthermore, the saga of the Kyurangers is far from over; they have already made some impressive progress and we can only hope they keep this up and have more exciting adventures in store for us down the line.

What do you think of the Kyuranger’s story so far? How would you like to see it develop? And what do you think Don Armage’s secret is? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section.

Posted on Leave a comment

Power Rangers Ninja Steel: The Story So Far.

Power Rangers Ninja Steel is the 24th and current season of Power Rangers. It was adapted from the Super Sentai series “Shuriken Sentai Ninninger”. Next year, it was get a second season called ‘Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel’ which will celebrate the franchise’s 25th anniversary! Before then, let’s have a look at how the series is going so far. Just a warning, this will contain spoilers for the first 12 episodes of the series. If you haven’t seen any of these episodes, I would recommend catching up if you don’t want these episodes to be spoiled.

Ten years ago, a mysterious star shaped object called “The Ninja Nexus Prism” crash landed in the backyard of Dane Romero, Earth’s greatest ninja. Dane removed the metallic ‘Ninja Steel’ coating of the prism revealing the Ninja Nexus Star, a powerful shuriken. Not long after, the monster Galvanax came to search for the prism, so he could use the star’s power to rule the universe, attacking Dane’s son, Brody, in the process. He tells his other son, Aiden, to run away with the Ninja Steel and hide it. Dane goes to rescue Brody from Galvanax and uses the Ninja Nexus Star to transform into the Red Ninja Steel Ranger. However, he fails to defeat Galvanax and loses the Ninja Nexus Star to him. In a final attempt to defend the universe, Dane breaks the star into six pieces but sacrifices himself in the process. The six broken pieces appear in the Ninja Nexus Prism and they transform into six Ninja power stars. Galvanax’s general, Ripcon, captures Brody and makes him a prisoner on Galvanax’s ship.

Episode 1 – Return of the Prism

10 years later, in the present day, Galvanax’s ship goes back to earth to film his TV show, Galaxy Warriors, and find the Ninja Steel. After learning Galvanax’s plan, Brody escapes the ship with Redbot (a robot), Mick (the ship’s mechanic) and the Ninja Nexus Prism. However, they crash land with Brody and Redbot being separated from Mick. After they land, Korvaka (one of Galaxy Warriors’ contestants) follow Brody in hopes of finding the Prism. Brody gets attacked by Korvaka but Sarah and Preston, two students from the nearby high school, come to rescue him. Three of the stars inside the prism glow, Allowing Brody, Sarah and Preston to transform into the Red, Pink and Blue Ninja Steel Rangers. They defeat Korvaka and decide to go back to Brody’s old house to look for Aiden and the Ninja Steel.

Episode 2 – Forged in Steel

Meanwhile, Calvin, a car enthusiast, and his girlfriend, Hayley, find Mick while driving. Suddenly, an army of Kudabots try to attack them. Calvin and Hayley escape from the Kudabots and go to the high school. When they arrive, Mick gets mistaken for the new teacher. When Brody and his friends arrive at his house, they find a clue left by Aiden telling them where he hid the Ninja Steel: at the high school inside a trophy that his dad won. After telling Mick through his datacom, another contestant named Ripperat attacks Calvin and Hayley but the prism lands in front of them. Two more stars glow and Calvin and Hayley to transform into the yellow and white Ninja Steel Rangers. Brody and friends arrive at the school and they defeat Ripperat but he grows to giant size. The prism shows a vision of five Zords and, with five new power stars, they use the Zords to defeat Ripperat. They go back to the school and convert the out of order painting room into their new secret base. To close the episode, Sarah points out that one of the power stars is missing. It is then revealed that another one of Galvanax’s minions, Madame Odius, has the last power star.

Episode 3 – Live and Learn

While the other Rangers are studying for a quiz, Brody gets alerted by his datacom that a new contestant, Spinferno, has landed on earth. He goes alone to fight Spinferno using his datacom to help. He goes back to school for the quiz but he uses the datacom to cheat. He gets caught and puts the datacom into his bag. It later falls out of his bag so, when Spinferno comes back, they have to defeat him without it’s help. Galvanax summons a giant Skullgator to fight the Rangers. It overpowers the Ranger’s Zords but they form the Ninja Steel Megazord and defeat it. As an apology, Brody presents the Rangers with ninjacoms, a way to communicate with the team from long distances.

Episode 4 – Presto Change-O

After one of his magic shows fails, Preston discovers he can do real magic. Meanwhile, Brody discovers Galvanax has landed on earth. The other Rangers come to help him, but Galvanax retreats and summons another contestant, Slogre, to defeat the Rangers. Slogre attacks Sarah, Calvin and Hayley with mist but Preston scares him off using magic. Preston decides to try out his magic in another show but he ends up harming some of the other students. Meanwhile, Sarah, Calvin and Hayley discover that Slogre’s mist makes them slow down. Slogre steals their power stars but Preston uses his magic to get them back. He learns that he can only use his magic to help others and not for personal gain. He and Brody defeat Slogre and the rest of the team go back to normal speed. Slogre grows to giant size and the Rangers form Ninja Steel Megazord: Dragon Formation to defeat him once again.

Episode 5 – Drive to Survive

The team sees Calvin working on a new motorbike. After Sarah asks him if she could have a ride after him, Calvin reveals that he can’t drive due to a fear he has. So, Sarah offers to teach him. While Calvin is learning to drive, he falls off the bike and runs off. Meanwhile a new contestant, Tangleweb, captures the Rangers and eats them and Calvin’s new motorbike. When it is learned that the only way to help the team escape is to drive the motorbike out of Tangleweb, Calvin faces his fear and uses the bike to break the barrier to the exit. The Rangers defeat Tangleweb and he grows to giant size. They summon the Zords but Tangleweb traps them in webs. Luckily, the Prism creates a new Zord, the Rumble Tusk Zord, and manages to break the other Zords free. They form the Rumble Tusk Ninja Steel Megazord and defeat Tangleweb once more.

Episode 6 – My Friend, Redbot

Redbot is seen reading a fairy tale book about a ball. He asks Hayley whether she would like to go to the school dance but she declines, under the impression that he was joking. When she returns to the painting room later that day, she finds that Redbot is gone. She uses her dog, Cody, to help her find him but comes across another contestant, Badpipes. Badpipes uses his bagpipes to hypnotise her into giving him her Power Star but before she can hand it over, Redbot kicks him, knocking the bagpipes out of his hands. She tries to escape using Redbot’s rocket boots but they only get so far before they crash land. She recovers from the but Redbot and her ninjacom malfunctions.

Hayley sends Cody out to get help while Redbot reboots. She realises that Redbot wasn’t joking earlier and apologies to him. She follows after Cody but the Rangers arrive before she can catch up with them. Badpipes appears with Ripcon and uses his bagpipes to hypnotise the Rangers until Hayley arrives and destroys the bagpipes. The Rangers fight Badpipes while Brody Fights Ripcon. Ripcon retreats and the Rangers beat Badpipes. He grows giant but the Rangers form the Rumble Tusk Ninja Steel Megazord and defeat him again. It is then revealed that Madame Odius is keeping a prisoner that appears to be powering the Gold Power Star. Hayley, feeling bad for Redbot, dances with him back at the painting room.

Ninninger Gekiatsutou Ichibantou

Episode 7 – Hack Attack

Sarah is seen attending various clubs at the same time. Afterwards, when demonstrating a new upgrade for the Ranger’s Ninja Blasters, her teammates ask how she could be at multiple clubs at once. Suddenly, a new contestant, Hacktrack, attacks the Rangers and somehow makes Sarah disappear. The team goes back to the painting room to warn Mick about what happened, when they see Sarah sitting in front of a set of monitors. She explains that she’s been using holograms to make it look like she’s been taking all the clubs. Hacktrack then manages to utilise Sarah’s holograms to make multiple giant Galvanaxes appear.

Sarah creates four holograms of herself to try and find a new way to deactivate the Galvanax clones. Meanwhile, the rest of the Rangers try to stop Hacktrack. When her clones end up disagreeing with each other, she deactivates them and tries to stop the clones on her own. She creates a fake hologram projector that makes Hacktrack lose control of the clones. The team defeat Hacktrack and he grows to giant size. The Rangers summon their Zords but Hacktrack files into space. They catch up with him using the new Astro Zord and the Astro Ninja Steel Megazord. They defeat Hacktrack but the Astro Zord flies off to Galvanax’s ship. Madame Odius’ prisoner uses the last Power Star to transform into the Ninja Steel Gold Ranger and escapes in the Zord.

Episode 8 – Gold Rush

The Rangers go to an autograph signing event for the country singer, Levi Weston, when Ripcon attacks with Kudabots. Brody rescues Levi while the other Rangers fight Ripcon. Ripcon makes Levi’s manager trip, revealing the Gold Power Star in his briefcase. The manager escapes while Levi asks Brody to be his bodyguard. Ripcon retreats but captures the manager. Brody is getting burgers with Levi when he is alerted that Ripcon has captured the manager. The Rangers try to fight Ripcon but they get caught in a net. However, the Rangers manage to rescue the manager and the Power Star but he can’t morph and runs away. From out of nowhere, Levi enters and picks up the Power Star to transform into the Gold Ninja Steel Ranger. Ripcon retreats but a Skullgator appears in his place. The Rangers form the Ninja Steel Megazord to defeat it.

Episode 9 – Rocking and Rolling

The Rangers are attending one of Levi’s concerts when they notice frequent earthquakes. They go to investigate when they find that a new contestant, Stonedozer, is causing them so he can try to destroy the concert hall. The Rangers manage to stop the concert and rescue the people before the building is destroyed. Stonedozer tries to escape but Levi catches up with him and defeats him. He grows to giant size but the Rangers summon the Bull Rider Megazord and the Rumble Tusk Ninja Steel Megazord to defeat him once again.

Episode 10 – The Ranger Ribbon

The Rangers are seen at the ribbon tree, a tree that people tie ribbons around to commemorate special occasions. As the Rangers talk, some people arrive and threaten to cut down the tree, to make way for a new building. When learning this, the Rangers try to protect the tree. It is revealed that Preston’s father is in charge of the building, he argues with the team and then leaves with Preston. The rest of the Rangers put up flyers in an attempt to save the tree. Preston returns and a protest is started in an attempt to save the tree. Preston’s dad tries to cut it down anyway but a ribbon celebrating Preston’s day of birth falls down, causing him to have a change of heart. As the Rangers are putting up a sign for the tree, a man walks up to Brody revealing himself as his brother, Aiden.

Episode 11 – Poisonous Plots

As an army of Kudabots attack the city and the Rangers, with Aiden, go to fight them. During the fight, a new contestant, Toxitea, poisons Brody, offering the antidote in return for the power stars. While Mick tries to make his own antidote, Levi and Hayley takes the other team’s power stars and makes chocolate replicas of them in an attempt to trick Toxitea. The trick worked and Brody is cured.

Episode 12 – Family Fusion

Ripcon attacks the city. Levi stays at the school to work on a new star while the rest of the Rangers go to fight. Aiden investigates in an attempt to find the Ranger’s base. Levi is delivering the new star to the other Rangers when Aiden breaks into the base to steal the Ninja Steel; Levi tries to fight him off. Meanwhile, Brody uses the Fusion Star to weaken Ripcon but he retreats before he can finish him off. The Rangers go back to the base to find Levi fighting Aiden. Levi shoots a laser beam into his chest when it is revealed that he is actually a robot. The Rangers defeat Aiden and all of his memories are transferred into Levi, where it is revealed that Levi is actually Aiden with his memories wiped. Ripcon is grown to giant size and so the Rangers use the new Fusion Star to combine the Bull Rider and Ninja Steel Megazords into the Ninja Fusionzord and defeat Ripcon once and for all.

Overall, this season is disappointing so far. The acting, story and characters are a big downgrade compared to Dino Charge. However, I do feel that the series is improving. The latest episodes were actually alright and I personally didn’t see the twist with Levi actually being Aiden coming. I’m excited to see what the next 8 or so episodes will bring.

What do you think of Ninja Steel so far? Let us know in the comments!

Posted on Leave a comment

Kamen Rider Build Episode 1 Review

This week marked the start of Kamen Rider Build in Japan so I thought I would share my thoughts and views on the first episode. After the emotional roller coaster of Kamen Rider Ex-Aid over the past year, Build definitely had a tough act to follow and, during the lead up to the first episode, we all started to get a feel for our new rider through magazine scans and follow up information, which got the community more excited.

As soon as September 3rd arrived, we all awaited the subtitled versions to become available so we could get a proper feel for our new hero. The wait is now over and now, after watching the debut of Sento and his marvellous transformation, I would like to give a run down of all my thoughts.

The episode in general felt fresh and crisp; the layout and introduction of all the characters was very well executed, even though it feels like they are forcing our thoughts on who certain characters will be in the long run. The use of CGI is starting to be ever more present in Kamen Rider but I feel it adds more detail. For example, Build’s final attack looked amazing with the math equations surrounding the enemy.

There was an obvious nod to classic Showa era Kamen Rider, with humans are being experimented on. Turning them into monsters is a beautiful touch and something I look forward to seeing more of as the series progresses. The only thing I wasn’t too keen on was Sento’s amnesia; I understand why it’s being used but I feel that a genius scientist who built a transformation device, a phone that turns into a bike and a system to make use the Full Bottles would be able to make something to restore his memory.

The way the driver worked is simple yet effective and the way his suit forms around him reminds me of Gunpla model sets, which is a very nice touch in my personal opinion. Currently, we have only seen one weapon in use and even though I find the Drill Crusher kind of cool, I find the gun mode a bit of an afterthought. I’m all for weapons with multiple uses but I feel Kamen Rider as a whole needs to stop doing weapons in such a manner.

Overall, I’m looking forward to the rest of the series and the directions it will take. The first bat-based villain looks amazing and I can’t wait to see what they will do with him.

Comment below with how you found first episode and let me know what you think will happen in the series.