The culture behind a Megazord: which Sentai I’d recommend?

25 Lug

Welcome back to my blog.

So, a reader actually requested me this article. Now, he asked me a recommended order to watch them, but here’s the deal with Super Sentai: there is almost never a “correct” order to watch. I mean, the only season who’s a follow up of the previous is Sun Vulcan, so that’s the only one I wouldn’t recommend if you haven’t watched Denziman yet.

Now, it all depends on what kind of superhero is your favourite: do you like the more magical ones, or those who use technology?

Also, there’s the whole “starting from the ’70s” thing, so I will also tell you one Sentai per decade. Plus, there have been multiple Sentai with the same motif, so I’d suggest one of those as well.

Okay, let’s begin. Sure, this is just my opinion, but, should you ask me “which Sentai should I watch”, I’d recommend one of the following.

Goranger

Of course, what better beginning than the original one? Sure, finging subtitles for this is difficult, and don’t get me started with the English dub. However, I think you should at least try out the first episode, just so you know how everything began.

Plus, this is in line with the original Kamen Riders, sharing the same creator, and it still got its charm after more than 40 years.

I was also going to suggest JAKQ, but I think that the next one would be better fitting.

Battle Fever J

Battle Fever J

Super Sentai only retroactively introduced Goranger and JAKQ as part of the series, so Battle Fever J has been the original one during the ’80s, and I suggest it for one simple reason: the giant robot. This is the first Super Sentai and, being a Marvel co-production, it feels more like a superhero show, with the heroes being rectuits who have trained around the World to stop a mysterious organization.

Goggle V

GoggleV

Now, Goggle V is the most successful Sentai here in Italy, to the point that it standardized the dubbing of tokusatsu (Power Rangers is still dubbed in Italian like this series more than 30 years ago), which is one of the reasons why I love it.

Another is that the Rangers are aided by “The computer boys and girls”, who tell them how to do everything. If you are like me, then you hate how the Rangers seem to know how everything works as soon as they transform for the first time. I mean, I don’t like when there are situations like Daigo already know how to properly lead the roll call on Kyoryuger. I get it, we talk about a show for kids, but wouldn’t it be nice if the Rangers learn how to use something?

Here, you don’t have this issue, and it’s surprising how a team with a moveset inspired by gymnastics manages to be so innovative. Another thing? The monster doesn’t become huge, but it’s revived and put inside of a giant robot.

Bioman

Bioman

Bioman is the Sentai that made Haim Saban fall in love, so I’d watch it just to see how charmful it is, and what Power Rangers could have been. Plus, the English dub is easily reachable, so you wouldn’t even think “man, I don’t want to listen to Japanese while reading in English”.

Maskman

Maskman

This is the first supernatural season, and one of the best Sentai from the ’80s. Of course, every Sentai from the ’80s is good, but I’d go with the one that changed its genre. I mean, after years of technological advance, we have a Sentai who uses “aura power”. Sure, Changeman’s power set comes from the Earth Force, but they’re still technological and paramilitary.

Liveman

If you need to watch an anniversary Sentai, how about the first one, done before Goranger and JAKQ were part of the franchise? Liveman is a good story of friendship and betrayal, and it remains one of the best “wild animal” seasons ever.

Jetman

Jetman

Jetman has always been considered the best Sentai season ever, to the point that following seasons started losing viewers because they weren’t as good as this one. I’d tell you to watch it because, if you stick around in the fandom, you’ll end up wondering “What’s so good about this Jetman?”.

Zyuranger

There’s a high probability that you discovered Super Sentai thanks to Power Rangers, so take a look at the first adapted season, the one that started it all. Of course, with all the changes (the Yellow Ranger is male, they’re prehistoric warriors, “Zordon” is an old wizard and so on), you’d feel confused, but at least stick around for when the Green Ranger’s counterpart will show up.

Dairanger

After the Jetman craze was over, fans noticed that Dairanger was one of the best Sentai as well, and they retroactively loved it. Plus, for almost 20 years, it was the only Sentai whose suits were skipped, so I’d suggest it to see how different this is from the adaptation.

Hurricaneger

After Dairanger, I wouldn’t suggest another one from the ’90s (unless you loved a particular Power Rangers season and wanted to see the original Japanese version). Ninpuu Sentai Hurricaneger is my favourite among the “ninja” seasons, with the whole “team split in two” and even elements from Harry Potter and Naruto. Yup, Harry Potter: they managed to draw inspiration from them for a ninja season.

Dekaranger

Dekaranger is considered one of the best “recent” Sentai. I said recent with brackets because it aired 13 years ago, and, even though it is still recent compared to a 42 year old franchise, when was the last time you thought about 13 years ago as a recent time? I was 11 back then!

However, this is a nice space season with lots of homages to the Metal Heroes and other tokusatsu, and I’d suggest it for the whole “cosmic” part.

Gekiranger

If you’re into Chinese martial arts but don’t want to watch Dairanger, it’s fine: Super Sentai also made Gekiranger, which is also a wild beast season, probably even the best one in that aspect. This is the most adrenalinic season, which is what you’d expect if you have the main Rangers being martial art experts fighting as a tiger, a wolf, a cheetah and so on.

Shinkenger

The best one when it comes to Japanese culture. They perfectly nailed the whole “samurai” part and managed to use everything to make this the most “Japan” season. The mechas are origami, they use Japanese characters for their attacks and so on, including the Rangers descending from actual samurai clans and respecting their master, Takeru Shiba.

Gokaiger

At first, I wasn’t going to include Gokaiger, because it takes for granted that the viewer knows a lot about Super Sentai. The entire season is packed with easter eggs and references to the franchise, so you’d miss a lot if you watch it as the first. Of course, you don’t have the time to watch 34 Sentai, so this could be useful to know more about the franchise, but here’s a warning: many major plot points of the past seasons are referenced, especially the main deaths. Therefore, watch it, but don’t get mad if they spoil you a death.

Go-Busters

I suggest the following two because Power Rangers actually skipped them, so you can be left wondering how an adaptation would have been.

Go-Busters is an amazing show, and it’s sad that gets so much hate from the production. First of all, this is a season with lots of references to Power Rangers, which makes the whole “being skipped” part sad. I mean, imagine if you do something as a homage to someone, only for him to hate it and reject it. I don’t want to think about it.

Also, this is something very unique and different, and takes a more “believable” approach to Super Sentai by having them being trained for 13 years, an organization that maintains their equipment and even darker and more technological villains.

ToQger

The motif of this season is imagination. Plus, the Rangers have the Norikae Change, meaning that they’re not designed by their colours and can swap weapons whenever they want. There’s a lot more than just “being a train Sentai”.

NinNinger

ninninger

Now, listen to me: NinNinger is one of the worst Sentai ever. Then, why do I recommend it? Simple: the adaptation is currently on air, and Super Ninja Steel is about to celebrate the 25th anniversary. One of the reasons why I picked up both Goseiger and Gokaiger was that I wanted a glimpse of what would have happened on Megaforce. Therefore, watch NinNinger only if you’re a Power Rangers fan who wants to know what’s next.

KyuuRanger

How about trying to catch up with the current season? Be careful, because it’s something very different, starting with the whole having an actual dozen of active Rangers and a mecha who can change articulations every time.

Okay, this article could have been much more, but the problem is that, when I have to talk about something, I never know what can be considered a spoiler, and I hate making spoilers, so I say little to nothing about that stuff.

Sure, if you’d like something more detailed about a Sentai, just tell me. Meanwhile, see you, next time, here, on the Empty Blog!

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  1. The culture behind a Megazord: an entire month with this series! | Il blog vuoto - 31 luglio 2017

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