Kamen Rider W Case Files 2 of 5-Riderology-unKamenCast-RX! 013

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Claire, Grimmhelm, Mewzard and Ammit once again count up W’s sins and some of the show’s good deeds as well! We get deep into discussing Kirihiko, Wakana, Saeko and Terui, as well as where the mystery could be going. Do you have the courage to hear our judgments of Kamen Rider W 13-26?

RX 013-W-Q2 Save As… To Download|Episode Length: 1:34:03

Check out: Claire’s work and Tumblr! Claire’s notes on W 13-26

Ammit’s viewing notes.

Princess Wakana’s Healing Princess Show! There are 34 episodes, subbed by TV-N!

And these episodes Specifically cross over with the W show, being “in Universe”

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Kamen Rider W Case Files 1 of 5-Riderology-unKamenCast-RX! 011

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Kamen Rider W is held up as one of the best Kamen Rider series. Is it? The three hosts discuss the merits of the show as its story unfolded Doublet by Doublet. One of us loves it, one of us is sour on it and one likes it alright; listen in to hear us explain ourselves and count up our sins!

RX 011-W-Q1

Save As… To Download|Episode Length: 1:36:36

Ammit, Mewzard and Claire talk about Kamen rider W 1-12 + Begins Night from Movie War 2010.

Check out: Claire’s work and Tumblr! Also specifically, her viewing notes.

Tweet answers to @unkamenRX or send an email unkamencastrx@gmail.com

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Claw Knees- Doubutsu Sentai Zyuohger 2 -Laser Knees 02

5-Laser Knees-2016-LogoJoin us as we start on a wild ride through Dobutsu Sentai Zyuohger! Can Yamato lead his Zyuman friends through an adventure to save the human world from the Deathgalien? Find out how we think he’s doing as we share our thoughts on:

Dobutsu Sentai Zyuohger; Episode  2- Don’t Mess With This Planet!

CLAW KNEES CALL OUT Save As… to Download Episode Length 1:32:37

Before we start Sono is going to give credit where it is due:

Dobutsu Sentai Zyuohger; Episode 2 – Don’t Mess With This Planet!

Episode Writer: Komura Junko

Episode Director: Shibasaki Takayuki

This is the same duo as last week, so no need to rehash all they’ve done in the past, but I want to commend them on bringing this cast of characters and this world to life so quickly.

Animal Instincts – Overall Thoughts about the episode & it’s message

SONO- This episode was honestly almost too cute for me to handle. Leo, Amu, and Sela exploring and having fun was just too damn cute and I loved it.

I think the conflict with Tusk amounted to something in the theme of “we can do more if we work together”. They have a common goal, and splitting up will only make things harder. Once everyone was working together, they had no trouble defeating their enemy, but when Tusk wasn’t helping and Yamato fought on his own, it was too much for them to handle.

AMMIT- I’m really enjoying the fact that almost no time elapsed from the end of episode 1. The differences between Yamato and his Zyumen remain pronounce which nicely balances out the concept of equality with sameness. I was thrilled to see an alternate 3 mech combo right away and I’m curious if the Zyuohgers will be like the gokaiger who rarely had an issue dispatching their foes. I really enjoyed how inept the Zagnyack were in comparison to the Pirate Sentai and I’m looking forward to seeing how that will hopefully be subverted here.

ALEPH-And me?  I’m just super-excited about how much I like Yamato.  Yamato’s a good friggin’ dude and a classic sort of red and his message of interconnectedness is REALLY working for me and overcomes the many, many, many aggressive feels I have about how to do evironmentalist stuff well by just pounding home that it’s about the interconnectedness of people and, guys, y’all know I love me some Fourze, right?  Got some Fourze feels, which is making me warm up to it a bit more.  The Zyulanders are cool, too, but while this felt like it was going to be a Tusk focus, it really was just cementing Yamato.

Hackles Up! – Problems & Nitpicks

Sono

  • Collars and leashes? Why collars and leashes? Like it rubs me the wrong way on a meta level because two of them are women, but also on a contextual level because THAT’S SUPER DISRESPECTFUL TO THIS EQUALLY INTELLIGENT SPECIES. Like you put a leash on a dog so it can’t run into traffic, because a dog doesn’t instinctively get that a car could just come out of nowhere if it runs into the street, or that a person it encounters is or isn’t a threat or someone it shouldn’t just run up to and inspect. But like YOU CAN JUST. TELL THEM NO. SIT THEM DOWN AND TELL THEM NO. Like I get the gag but it just doesn’t work for me.
  • I really REALLY hope Naria will eventually get to do more than just pass out continues. She seems like she could be really interesting if she decided to flip this whole thing on it’s head eventually like “I don’t want to be the Booth Babe anymore I wanna go KILL A THING.”

Ammit

  • +1 on treating the Zyumen like animals. Are we equals or not?
  • Azald [Blue Cube] saying that Naria “the Girl” doesn’t understand the Blood Game
  • Halbogi’s very Aboriginal design feels a bit wrong in this context
  • Uncle Mario doesn’t have to be the animal to carve it, does he?

Aleph

  • The baddies need a thing to do and soon. The Gegeru worked because it was mysterious and audacious and personal.  The Blood Game not so much; they’re sentai villains.  Massive impersonal destruction is their whole deal.  Need some meat to it because they are so close to generic–a really gorgeous-looking generic, but generic nonetheless–and as I said last week, I really dig on villain politics in sentai.
  • Look, I am almost entirely sure I have seen the monster this week in another show.  I could not tell you which one, but I am SO sure I’ve seen it afore.
  • The weird sorta-Tarzan yells are starting to hit me weird. I can’t quite say why.  Imagine I’ll get used to them or not.

Tide Turners – Stuff you enjoyed.

Sono

  • I love that Sela is just as fun and excitable as Amu. Way too often you have the girls on a polar opposite spectrum and you’ve got the fun silly one and the serious badass who refuses fun, and honestly I’m just glad to see the “serious” girl getting to enjoy herself and have things she loves doing right out of the gate.
  • I also like that Mario’s animal impersonations are apparently SO GOOD that he legitimately fooled Sela’s sense of hearing. She thought it was a real seal. I just like Mario a lot. He’s goofy, but he loves what he does and I’m okay with his goofiness as long as he keeps imparting his wonderful old-man wisdom on the group.
  • Eagle-Tiger-Elephant has claw knees jesus christ I love it RIP HIM OPEN WITH YOUR KNEE.
  • I also like that even though Leo and Amu both have big claws as their power-up, they have very different attacks with them.

Ammit

  • Leo is so proud of his loudness while Amu has an extraordinary sense of taste and Sela has the very practical KEEN as all get out hearing
  • The other Zyumen all have this implicit trust that Tusk will be OK and call them if he is in need of helop
  • Uncle Mario and Yamato telling about his experience with the Eagle-Man to two parties simultaneously
  • Yamato’s insistence that all life is connected and that is why he will do all he can to help out those around him is gorgeous

Aleph

  • No, seriously, I love it.  The whole thing where it’s the Zyulanders being kinda mercenary about paying things back and then Yamato doing all the stuff to pay it forward? Love it.
  • Could still go either way on Uncle Mario, but finding out he’s an eccentric artist does push me into the liking him camp.
  • Mostly I just REALLY loved the Zyulanders’ body language.  The face and suit actors really bring a lot to driving home how like the animals we know they are, even if they’re also upright-walking versions thereof.

Evolutions – What do you think this show has in store for the future?

Sono- Amu episode next which may actually kill me with how cute she is, because man this episode came pretty close.

Ammit- Uncle Mario will get to help the Zyuohger by carving up some mystic cube shards into new Cubimals – yes I am talking about Mario going all Wajima up in this show!

Aleph- But beyond that, I am really looking forward to the head bad’n being, like, a dude with a giant metal snake tail for legs and also some more explanation of why the Zyulanders are so devil-may-care about all kinds of everything.

Quick Reflexes

Do you think Yamato got Tusk to change his mind about being part of the group too easily?

What do you think of each Zyuman having their own heightened sense, and which one they were assigned?

 


NEXT WEEK — EPISODE 3:  Can’t Go Home, Even Though I Want To

To share your thoughts with us or ask us questions about Zyuohger and Super Sentai in general from the jungle of the net, direct your instincts to our inbox, Submit a portion of your self to us on Tumblr or probe our souls with your pithy or verbose messages on twitter @unkamenrx.

Thanks Anglemeister, Jason and JuuoShark for sharing your thoughts with us.

NOTE: FYI There may be something up with the link for Anglemeister …it redirects to Tumblr in a weird way when it shouldn’t. If anyone knows what’s up and how I can fix it on my end please let me know. It could just be a Tumblr[dot]com thing though

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You can reach us individually

@TrialOfHeroes -Ammit

@NeedsMoreAleph -Aleph

@MamaFriesMeal -Sono

Keep Hailing- Ghost 18 -RX! 132

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Join us as we take a critical eye to Kamen Rider Ghost. Will Takeru save himself and the Kamen Rider franchise in the [72] days he has left on this blue planet? Find out how we think he’s doing as we pass judgement on:

Kamen Rider Ghost 18 Comeback! Fantastical Science!

Save As… to Download Episode Length 2:19:06

Before we start Sono is going to give credit where it is due:

Writer: Hasegawa Keiichi

Director: Morota Satoshi

Action Director: Miyazaki Takeshi

I gave some background on Hasegawa and Morota last episode, so I’m not going to repeat myself, but I need to say man THIS is the kind of work I love and want to see out of Hasegawa and I hope he keeps this up in any future episodes he does.

Let’s turn a discerning eye to what could be the Macro Message hidden in this episode of Ghost!

Ammit’s View Ghost 18

Overcoming our difference through mutual respect and by working towards a common goal makes us better people and if everyone had that attitude the world would be perfect.

Sono’s View Ghost 18

I feel like 18 is really an extension of what I was saying in 17. Just because your ideals are different than someone else doesn’t make either of you wrong and doesn’t make you mortal enemies just because. As long as you can respect why the other person sees things the way they do (And neither of you is outright hurting anyone), there’s still a lot that can be accomplished. Again, if everyone is the same not fighting or questioning ideas ever, there’s no way anything will ever progress and nothing new will happen.

This is also definitely running parallel to Takeru and Alain’s conflict of ideals, where Takeru is trying to understand Alain’s side, and Alain wants no part of it. Also the fact that Alain is definitely hurting people and doesn’t care, shows where this  idea of founding mutual respect can go pretty wrong, but I think it’s good to really drive home the concept of making a strong effort to find compromise (Especially if one side isn’t hurting people.) and then work from there.

Sarranecinan’s View Ghost 18

-N/A-

Aleph’s View Ghost 18

I’m on pretty much the same hook: making a counterpoint to the fact that some ways of doing things are just fundamentally incompatible by showing that the nature of the incompatibility isn’t just that two things are different, but that they really want things that are in opposition.  Our Heroes and the Eyecons all want the same thing, they just go about it differently.  Igor, Alan, Alan’s brother, and the rest of the Ganma seem to want outcomes that are just plain bad and their use of methods similar to those of Our Heroes (for example: science and friendship) don’t make what they want good.

The unKamenCrew’s Top 3 (Maximum) Woments from Ghost 18

Ammit

  • There is an Imperial Princess too! She’s even a nice person it would seem. Interesting
  • Alain is over 150 years old!
  • Takoyaki lady is so boss!
  • Kanon had some effect on Makoto despite the mind control
  • Onari’s care for Akari and calling her on her self-doubt
  • Akari’s pronouncement of faith in herself
  • Kanon making an effort to work with Prince Alain to find Makoto
  • How well Kanon took the news that Alain is not who she thought he was
  • Igor’s scaled down Mega Urourder

Sono

  • KANON IS THE MOST PURE AND PRECIOUS BEING ON THIS PLANET. Her scenes with Alain were the sort of thing I’ve really been wanting from her and I’m so thrilled. The whole exchange of “You were scary when we met.” “Am I scary now?” “Lol no.” was great and the scene where Alain has to grasp the concept of food and eating for the first time was hysterical to the point where I can let pass Fumi asking if Kanon and Alain were dating. (Also Fumi is an old woman and I expect this of her. It doesn’t give me uncomfy vibes about KAnon getting shoved into a love-interest role.)
  • ONCE AGAIN, AKARI AND ONARI!!! They really turned things around this episode to give Akari and Onari a chance to have been in the place the other was in 17 and drive home that their respect goes both ways. Igor called Onari garbage and Akari just LOST IT. The whole scene was so beautifully acted on her part. I also really love how they reflected this in Newton and Himiko, and it’s because of Akari and Onari’s feelings or respect and admiration for each other that Takeru was able to win.
  • Big Sister Ganma has really caught my attention, as did everything surrounding her. She’s the one who took in Makoto and Kanon. Kanon was not immediately an eyecon. Alain wanted nothing to do with them but his sister kind of laughed it off, not perceiving Alain as a threat to her new humans. We’re learning a lot more about not only Makoto and Kanon’s ordeal, but Alain’s relationship to his siblings. Digging the heck out of this exposition.

Aleph

  • Just gonna +1 a few other points real quick: Kanon as exposition vector is nice, Igor having his own eye-reader, and the return of Fumi.
  • I’m really happy that we’re getting some power of (familial) love to be a thing that is this close to saving Makoto.  That sort of thing is exciting for me.
  • I’m weirdly loving the Sanzo suit.  The implication that it’s got if not all the powers and abilities of the protagonists from Journey to the West, at least some of them could be really neat but on the other hand, there just wasn’t much of it?  I just lost my sugar a bit when I saw Sanzo’s companions built into the suit.
  • Akari throwing down with the even-more-upgraded Shiranui AND getting the great “Well, Takeru’s not here and if we don’t do this, more people will get hurt. Here we go.”
  • Okay, apparently you can just GO to Ganma-world.  Yikes.  That’s gonna be intense later on.

Sarracenian

-N/A-


You can reach us through @unKamenRX or the show’s inbox to submit any questions, suggest topics for future shows or just let us know how we’re doing.

This episode’s hosts can be reached @TrialOfHeroes for Ammit, @NeedsMoreAleph for Aleph, @CSarracenian for Cannibal Sarracenian and @MamaFriesMeal for Sono.

Our awesome intro/outro music is by our very own Sono! Her rocking just won’t stop.

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Let’s Go On Safari!- Doubutsu Sentai Zyuohger 1 -Laser Knees 01

5-Laser Knees-2016-LogoJoin us as we start on a wild ride through Dobutsu Sentai Zyuohger! Can Yamato lead his Zyuman friends through an adventure to save the human world from the Deathgalien? Find out how we think he’s doing as we share our thoughts on:

Dobutsu Sentai Zyuohger; Episode 1 – The Bustling Animal Land!

LK01-Zyuohger01-ShowImage-2 Save As… to Download Episode Length 1:45:18

NOTE: The Player doesn’t seem to be working right now, but the “Save As…” should get you the episode. I will work on this. -Ammit

Before we start Sono is going to give credit where it is due:

Episode Writer: Komura Junko

Episode Director: Shibasaki Takayuki

Komura Junko is our lead writer and has several past Tokusatsu credits, Co writing an episode of Go-Onger, and co-writing Go-Onger V. Gekiranger, several episodes of Goseiger and Gokaiger, about half of Akibaranger and Kamen Rider Wizard (as well as Wizard’s solo movie and the Wizard half of Wizard x Gaim), and a few episodes of Drive.

Shibasaki Takayuki is our lead director and has a number of past directing credits, mostly in Kamen Rider, directing at least a few episodes in every Kamen Rider from Kabuto to Fourze, with the exception of Kiva. He was also the head director on Go-Busters, though seems to have only directly been in charge of a few episodes. (This seems really bizarre to me?) as well as some directing on Drive and Ghost and a lot of Heisei Rider movies and DVD specials.

Animal Instincts – Overall Thoughts about the episode & it’s message

WEEK 1 – FIRST IMPRESSIONS

  Sono- I have high hopes. I’ve been avoiding most pre-show press due to how Ninninger ended up for me because of that, so I went in mostly blind aside from a few little things and I’m already in love with everyone. It feels fun and bright, but not overly silly. The villains feel like a threat, and the cast already all feels very heroic. I got SUPER emotional listening to the OP and during Yamato’s first big fight, and even a bit during the very cute dance ending. All around, it feels like really good energy and I’m excited to see where this show goes.

Ammit- I forgot how good it can feel to watch Super-Sentai. Yamato is really personable and the four Zyumen we met seem interesting. I like how the 4 guardians of the Link Cube are split male/female and there are each half dour and chipper. I think the dynamic will be really fun between them and I can already see arcs waiting to be travelled just from some key dialogue. The heroism is turned up to 11 and while the use of Invaders from Beyond isn’t great, that blemish is offset by the fact that Earth’s saviors are from a different Beyond and are NOT humans. Yamato’s ability to transform with Zyuman power also erases the artificial lines separating all life forms and sends the message that “we all are one” if not one and the same.

Aleph- Gonna be the one skeptic here.  It’s got legs, don’t get me wrong, and I think there’s a lot of good potential introduced here in the first episode, but there’s a level here at which I feel like it’s just this side of too traditional in structure?  All the boxes were ticked off, no doubt–sitcom scenario, baddies, first transformation, robot fight, even a hint at the sixth member of the team–but the whole time I kept thinking of a less-weird Jetman or Gingaman.  I look forward to being shown to be wrong and love the heck out of a zoologist as our Red and the designs are weird but carried out nicely, but the first ep feels just this side of too safe.  Which is a weird thing to say as it’s honestly such an abstract thing coming down more to gut than anything else because if you grilled me on what it was that made me iffy on it, I don’t know what I’d say.

Hackles Up! – Problems & Nitpicks

Sono

  • The Cube/Block motif feels so lazy to me? Like it’s a cube. It’s just. A square??? They’re also really bulky and it’s hard to make holding a square aesthetically appealing.
  • The suits themselves feel a little uninspired.  I like the helmets, but the body of the suit I feel is kind of dull? It’s different, but not all that interesting.
  • Gettin’ pretty tired of “5 Person Team. 3 Person Robot”. Just stick the other two on as arms. This isn’t hard

Ammit

  • Perfect Sculpted Lips because we don’t need to sexualize the ONLY female villain so far.
  • The Deathgalien names didn’t seem to match their aesthetics well. The cube guy wasn’t called Jag’d OR Kubar. Why not?
  • The Zyumen tails sticking around when they get their human faces because I can feel that getting really fetish-y really fast

Aleph

  • Wait, is nobody else gonna mention the rubber/plastic horse masks on like a third of the background Zyumen?  Because I was trying SO HARD to stop noticing them but there they were.  All the time.
  • Also that dude that Red’s living with had best have a thing he’s doing because for all “older dude the heroes live with” is well-trod territory in Sentai, the costume antics straight out the gate put me on edge.  Weird guy is great, weird guy I’m supposed to spend lots of time laughing at is not for me.
  • And, fine, I’ll be the guy who says it: the music was NOT working for me.  I’ve loved Sentai music before (I straight-up bought the Toqger soundtrack) but this one is gonna be a grower, I think.  It’s not “Kamen Rider Agito” bad, but it’s… I’m gonna need a bit.

Tide Turners – Stuff you enjoyed.

Sono

  • We had a lot of world building for just the first episode. We already know what pretty much everyone is about and got a lot of personality out of every member of our cast.
  • The animal suit designs are really nice (with the exception of any Horse people who are literally just THAT horse mask.) and I think they show a lot of personality of the characters. I feel like they’re even a bit above and beyond the ones in Gekiranger.
  • It reminds me a lot of GaoRanger, but not in a way where I feel like it’s copying from GaoRanger. It’s just a very similar energy and I like it.

Ammit

  • Yamato saying humans are animals because of all that can mean
  • Amu calling out the Contrivance Cubes’ uncanny ability to make things super convenient
  • Leo nuzzling Yamato after yelling “human” at him and raising his arms to cease him
  • The essential conflict set up between these selfish, self-pleasuring Gamer Villains and our Heroes who serve others as a profession
  • Flight of the ZyuEagle
  • Whip Sword

Aleph

  • Gonna +1 that whipsword.  That’s a good weapon.
  • I really enjoyed a lot of the design?  Like how the cube thing was built into at least a lot of the background of the animal world?  And if, as Ammit says, we can understand our heroes being contributing members of society fighting against a bunch of awful gamer-types, the fact that the baddies explode into pixels is just wonderful.  And seeing the foam cubes they toss on the robot at the end?  Wonderful.
  • Speaking of the baddies, the head bad guy with the glowy mouth? That was a good touch.
  • Hey, a scientist-hero!  I love that.  And the kid can act!  That’s been a really nice change from Ninninger which, while a decent enough show… whoof.

Evolutions – What do you think this show has in store for the future?

Sono- I’m hoping for an anniversary skit involving GaoRanger with a joke about Red and Yellow being switched, and Leo joking about taking over as leader. (Even though Sela is clearly the one in charge here.)

Ammit- Eagle will return to mentor or as the 6th ranger.

Aleph- No clue.  Aside from the return of eagle, I got nothin’.  Ask me again after episode 3, cuz that’s where even the slow-starting ones tend to make their stand.

Quick Reflexes

What do you think of the Block/Cube motif?

What do you think of the show taking on an environmentalist angle?

What are your opinions so far of the villain group?


NEXT WEEK — EPISODE 2:  DON’T UNDERESTIMATE THIS PLANET!

To share your thoughts with us or ask us questions about Zyuohger and Super Sentai in general from the jungle of the net, direct your instincts to our inbox, Submit a portion of your self to us on Tumblr or probe our souls with your pithy or verbose messages on twitter @unkamenrx.

Subscribe: RSS|iTunes

You can reach us individually

@TrialOfHeroes -Ammit

@NeedsMoreAleph -Aleph

@MamaFriesMeal -Sono

RX132 Preshow: Kamen Rider Ghost 18 Reactions and Questions

The deadline for submitting feedback for Ghost 18 for -RX! 132 is Today, WEDNESDAY, February 17, 2016 12:30pm PST, but we welcome feedback anytime after that as well in our comments section, in or inbox or through Twitter or on Tumblr.

Hello everyone, this is Ammit here. I have some thoughts about Ghost 18.

This show is officially holding to much back. Takeru went to Ganma World, but encountered no one and saw nothing of significance beyond the Monolith of Monoliths surrounded by smaller Monoliths… perhaps. The tease has gone on long enough that I’m starting to chafe and as it stands I’m about ready to feign elation and just be done with all the fancy movements the production is making. I wish Ghost’s Creatives could hear my frustration and give me more faster because that’s what I need. I do enjoy the bits reaching in to Prince Alain’s past and how the Fukami siblings met him and his here-to-fore-unmentioned SISTER. She seems interesting. We also finally learn that Prince Adel is his brother and the preview for the next episode got me thinking about how murky things are in the Ganma royal family. Who is the current Emperor? Where is their father? What about their mother?

Enough from me. We want to hear from you, so we have some questions for you to ponder so you can share your robust thoughts with us.

Bonus question: Are you frustrated with the pacing on the Ganma side of the show?

Let’s make this official:

The unKamenCrew wants to hear your thoughts, comments and questions on:

Kamen Rider Ghost 18 Comeback! Fantastical Science!

What are your bones to pick in Ghost 18?

What were the top 3 Woah-ments for you in Ghost 18?

On Eyecons

Do you think we’ll see the Knife Ganma Eyecon again?

In the preview we saw that Mob Ganma again, would it bother you if all the previous Ganma came back by way of Igor’s ability to load them into his Urourder?

Are you pleased with how the Heroic Eyecons are being united? Did it work with Himiko and Newton this episode?

Forcing Perspective

[Over-Time] Kamen Rider Ghost - 18SD [69C70969].mp4_snapshot_06.10_[2016.02.17_05.29.25]

Takeru was hardly in Ganma World. Was that a cop out from the show?

[Over-Time] Kamen Rider Ghost - 18SD [69C70969].mp4_snapshot_09.16_[2016.02.17_05.53.51]

Is Akari lacking any more development? Is she in a good place?

[Over-Time] Kamen Rider Ghost - 18SD [69C70969].mp4_snapshot_16.25_[2016.02.17_08.00.29][Over-Time] Kamen Rider Ghost - 18SD [69C70969].mp4_snapshot_16.34_[2016.02.17_08.00.38][Over-Time] Kamen Rider Ghost - 18SD [69C70969].mp4_snapshot_16.52_[2016.02.17_08.00.54][Over-Time] Kamen Rider Ghost - 18SD [69C70969].mp4_snapshot_16.57_[2016.02.17_08.01.02]

Do we need to see any more focus placed on Onari, like the treatment Akari got over these two episodes?

Generally

Do you have questions for us? Do you have any comments for us regarding Ghost?

 

Hail to the Queen- Ghost 17 -RX! 131

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Join us as we take a critical eye to Kamen Rider Ghost. Will Takeru save himself and the Kamen Rider franchise in the [73] days he has left on this blue planet? Find out how we think he’s doing as we pass judgement on:

Kamen Rider Ghost 17 Dazzling! The Ethereal Queen!

Screenshot_2016-02-11-12-20-15Screenshot_2016-02-11-12-20-11

Save As… to Download Episode Length 2:05:20

Before we start Sono is going to give credit where it is due:

Episode Writer: Hasegawa Keiichi

Episode Director: Morota Satoshi

Action Director: Miyazaki Takeshi

  • Morota Satoshi is our head director, and has done directing on Blade and Hibiki, as well as some on every Post-Decade Heisei Rider. He also has done directing on every Sentai from Boukenger to Goseiger, as well as Gingaman, GoGoFive, Timeranger, and Hurricanger preceding them. He has also had several cameo roles, the most notable being as Mr. Morota in Kamen Rider Fourze. So he has a lot of experience with both Rider and Sentai and seems to be a well-trusted director with Toei.
Ammit is adding this in because he liked look of these two episodes a lot
Episode 11: Magnificent! The Mysterious Eye!
Episode 12: Heroic! A Man's Resolve!
  • Hasegawa Keiichi has a lot of writing credits in Ultraman, and also wrote on Cutie Honey: The Live, but is probably most well known in Rider-centric circles for co-writing Kamen Rider W, Fourze, and Drive. He also has several anime credits including Zoids (both Chaotic Century and New Century Zero), The Big O, 2003 adaptation of Astro Boy, and Megaman NT Warriors, the last of which he was the lead writer for. Hasegawa, in Rider at least, seems to handle a lot of episodes about ally cast members.

What, if anything, is being said about the world and our place in it in this episode? Ghost deals with the idea of Icons and Great Men, in a way that makes focusing narrowly on obtaining tangible objects relating to them important, but what makes a person great? What does that mean?

Let’s turn a discerning eye to what could be the Macro Message hidden in this episode of Ghost!

Ammit’s View Ghost 17

Individuality is super important and shouldn’t be nullified to reach some “greater” end.

Sono’s View Ghost 17

They don’t specifically frame it this way or try to punch this message home, but the episode is very much about Akari and Onari and how their different beliefs clash but they still care very much about one another. They approach the goal of helping Takeru practically from polar opposite angles, but they still respect each other’s methods. They bicker about their different methods, but Onari openly admires what Akari does, and Akari openly worries about Onari when he gets hurt or feels down about his training. Both of them see the merits on what the other does. (Onari more openly than Akari, but Akari always seems to be more defending science rather than saying spirituality is wrong. This feels kind of reasonable, given that she’s in a spiritual setting with very spiritual characters.) They can care about each other in spite of their fundamental world view being different. Akari outright says that reason doesn’t trump individuality. She’d rather go back and forth with Onari and his different viewpoint than force everyone to be like her. I think that’s a great thing to put at the forefront of the cast.

Sarranecinan’s View Ghost 17

Also hey ho anyone noticed the lowkey sort of pro-women undertones in this episode? How the story is focused on Himiko, reiterating importance of Akari and her intellect and heroism, the villains being a serial killer who hunts young women and someone who uses them as puppets, and the Rider relying on Himiko’s power to save the day. Quite nice.

Aleph’s View Ghost 17

I think the thing I particularly enjoyed was the exploration of logic, reasonable argument, and rhetorical framing as things which are not static or neutral, but which can be put into use when awful people with awful ideas need to justify, rationalize, or hide behind something we all like.  Igor–and by extension Aran and the Ganma generally–start from a bad place (destroying freedom/individuality creates peace) and creates an internally-consistent, self-justifying, utterly vicious mindset; the kind of philosophy which is rife in the world or at least among certain strains of people on the interwebs.  The conflation of logic and cruelty is everywhere and I’m so excited to see this show say that it’s wrong and it seems pretty clearly to be building to saying how big a lie that is.  After all, Aran may think his world’s a utopia, but as Atwood observes: every utopia contains someone else’s dystopia.  You can’t hurt people happy and if someone thinks the destruction of the soul will help the world, I feel pretty safe in saying that they are wrong because we are all individuals and it’s pretty clear that the folks making the argument aren’t exactly lining up to become drones.

The unKamenCrew’s Top 3 (Maximum) Woments from Ghost 17

Ammit

  • Akari and Onari working so hard in their fields to help Takeru
  • Kanon and Makoto still being at Daitenkuu almost one week later
  • Onari attacking Knife Ganma
  • Injured Makoto going to save Onari and Akari
  • The Soothsayer’s possession by Himiko
  • Newton fleeing from himiko is super interesting at least as an unexplained concept
  • Himiko Vice-Pres chilling at the temple

Sono

  • AKARI. AND. ONARI. Oh my god this is really what I’ve been waiting for between the two of them, or the start of it at least because I’m really hoping for more. Their ideals are butting heads a bit, but this episode really goes out of it’s way to show how close they are. Onari has SO MUCH RESPECT AND ADORATION for Akari, and it practically makes my heart burst out of my chest. They both want to help Takeru, but Onari upfront in this episode says he can’t help like Akari can. He can’t figure things out that might be useful, so all he can do is try to help fight. When Igor starts insulting Akari, Onari PUSHES TAKERU OUT OF THE WAY to defend what she did for him. And Akari’s bickering is shown to be affectionate. When Onari doesn’t snipe back at her, she worries about him. And when Akari’s soul was taken, Onari stays with her and keeps trying to wake her up and tend to her. I’m just so incredibly happy with how this episode showed these two and their relationship, and I want more of it immediately.
  • I like the kind of multi-use Eyecon personality display we had in this episode. Himiko going Imagine Possession and talking through the eyecon at the end, Newton just flying around doing whatever he wants and sulking on the swings… I’d like this to keep up and kind of slowly have more eyecons doing stuff and interacting as cast members.
  • Necrom-Possessed-Specter is cool looking and an interesting route to go down. As we have Akari standing up for individuality and free will, we have Aran stripping that away from Makoto. Aran’s comment of “Now I can say we’re friends again.” also has interesting creepy implications, as if we didn’t already have plenty from Aran’s conversation with Takeru and Kanon about Ganma World being a “utopia” and Kanon uncomfortably agreeing with him.

Aleph

  • I really fear that we’re gonna be hitting a lot of the same points because, look, Aran’s… let’s say “cavalier” attitude toward individuality being something he’s comfortable with removing from someone supposed to be his friend?  LOVE IT.  It’s that thing where Aran’s worldview is such that of COURSE when he says “friends”, he has no friggin’ idea what it means.
  • Igor.  The hints we get throughout about how Ganmaworld views itself and how Igor specifically thinks it’s the scientific paradise that’s been a dream of so many thinkers for so long make me SO DANG HAPPY.  Not because I like it, of course, but it’s just this idea that they’ve used their perverse eugenics-style logic to build the “scientifically perfect world”, which makes it a Hell AND gives Akari a nemesis all her own.
  • Onari hearing Igor talk smack about Akari and making it so clear that he was NOT having it.  Seriously, this show is so good at handling having ‘normals’ in a superheroic narrative and it’s great.
  • Hey, Shiranui’s back!  And I wonder if the weird misfire onto Onari is gonna have some kind of mystic effects.
  • Also, real quick: wanna know why Newton’s running.  Dude loves weird magic stuff.

Sarracenian

  • Hey ho I really like how this show handles its plot mysteries. I’ve talked about this to death (lol) by this point, but this show really does a fine job at not only giving enough small chunks of what is going on at just the right frequency but also has mostly avoided any outright exposition scenes. Story hints are instead delivered through character dialogue and actions. It all feels natural and while probably not completely flawless, does demonstrate how this show handles its mystery plot thus far if not better than all the Neo-Heisei shows is certainly better than the last two years. (Again, Gaim’s mystery of “WHAT WAS THE HORRIFYING THING TAKATORA SHOWED IN HELHEIM TO MICCHY” and then not saying anything about it for FIVE episodes until finally unloading the whole thing in a clumsy grandiose exposition scene that amounted to a drab building and rock sofas (“OH NO NOT THE ROCK SOFAS!! EXISTENTIAL HORROR D:!!!!”) And while we at it, Igor so far feels like Prof. Ryoma done right. New villains are nice.
  • ‘Eyy Akari and Onari in the limelight is really good. Even if it only amounted to a joke, I’m glad they still gave Onari an inspirational speech of his own and show how loyal and dedicated he is. A good friend.
  • I am so glad this show and its characters very much recognizes that Akari is an important active character in the show, and does everything it can to showcase it with her deductions and science research and getting shit done just in general. It would have been so easy to just kinda lay her off when her new Shiranui isn’t working, but instead they had a scene of her actually theorizing why it doesn’t work which then led to a scene with Igor, who was so impressed by Akari’s intellect that he decides to share his worldview to her as a fellow scientist (which was the scene that revealed just what kind of fucked up totalitarian hellscape Ganma World is, again to reiterate how naturally the plot revelations and character actions go together in this show)
  • Also the way Akari was eyeing up Igor made me half-expect she was ready to kick in the balls at any moment, which would have been amazing.
  • (minor moment but somehow I found the scene of TAkeru almsot casually kicking the Knife Ganma away shortly after taking Akari’s soul funny for some reason)
  • Himiko was pretty cool for the short amount of screentime given. I dunno how but she does convey this presence of leader. Also liked the minor detail of how the drawing of Himiko specifically depicted her as a more elderly woman, since usually it would be more a younger “Hollywood-friendly” lady if you get what I mean.

Takeru’s Heroes

While each episode of Ghost has a small amount of notes regarding the Hero featured, we hear at the unKamenCast-RX! wanted to step it out and do some research of our own and share what we learn with each other and you, so with each new Hero Soul, you can expect a short presentation on the Hero behind the soul.

Queen Himiko

Queen Himiko is in a strange and interesting position of being somewhere between a historical and mythological figure. It seems as though she did really exist, likely in the early 200’ AD (Wikipedia lists her birth in 170 AD and death in 248 AD, with her reign from 189 AD until her death.) but a lot of very early Japanese historical texts deliberately omitted her.

Himiko occupied herself with magic and the occult, and was regarded as a shaman by historical texts. It’s said she gained a lot of popularity through this and it’s what attracted the people to making her their Queen.

In what I hope is some hilarious foreshadowing regarding our villain cast, it’s said by early Chinese historical sources that prior to Himiko, there was a man ruling the country and that resulted in 80 years of war and fighting, so the people said “Okay enough of this we’re letting a woman handle things.” and put Himiko in charge. Himiko was said to have one thousand female attendants and only one (or two, by another account) male attendants, though it’s also said that her younger brother served her as an advisor. I’m not sure if that one attendant was him, or if the count of two is taking him into account. But mostly Himiko seemed to just want to keep the men out of this.

It seems that Himiko had a relatively peaceful reign as Queen of Wa, and was regarded as an ally of the Wei kingdom in China, which is likely why the earliest accounts of her appear in the Records of Three Kingdoms, in the Records of Wei, of her sending several male and female slaves with textiles. They describe the culture of her reign as strict, with her palace being heavily guarded and surrounded by stockades, and Himiko herself as rarely seen (Though they don’t seem to give a reason why for any of this.), which reminds me a bit of our Ganma friends as well…

It was said that after Himiko died, a male ruler was placed in power but no one wanted to listen to him and there was rebellion and assassination attempts until they placed Iyo, a female relative of Himiko’s, in power which returned the kingdom to relative peace.

Like I said earlier, early Japanese histories seem to omit Himiko, particularly the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki. The Nihon Shoki does however quote the Records of Wei regarding Himiko’s communications with Wei, so it seems like any detailed information about her and her rule was deliberately omitted from the record. They do however include several female Shamans who are associated with Himiko that were connected to the imperial families and Shinto deities, but none seem to line-up properly with the time in which she lived and reigned so it is difficult to say if the figures in these accounts are meant to be Himiko. As such, Chinese and Japanese historians have struggled to reconcile the discrepancy between the different accounts.

Modern Japan seems ready to accept Himiko as a sort of mythological or folk-lore figure with open arms though as she appears in a lot of different modern media, from manga and anime, to games, to film and dramas, use Himiko as a character.


You can reach us through @unKamenRX or the show’s inbox to submit any questions, suggest topics for future shows or just let us know how we’re doing.

This episode’s hosts can be reached @TrialOfHeroes for Ammit, @NeedsMoreAleph for Aleph, @CSarracenian for Cannibal Sarracenian and @MamaFriesMeal for Sono.

Our awesome intro/outro music is by our very own Sono! Her rocking just won’t stop.

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