I am nearly four months late writing this, but better late than never. I will preface this by saying that prior to this I had never seen anything related to Ultraman. In fact, my experience with even the tokusatsu genre is extremely limited. Power Rangers is the closest I’ve gotten, and yet, it formed the basis for my love of superheroes as a child. The cool outfits, the poses, and the special moves. It’s like a rush for me.
For a while now I’ve wondered why American superheroes just don’t really click with me. So many people are riding the Marvel hype train, but the last Marvel film I watched was Doctor Strange, and before that Captain America: Civil War. I skipped the 2nd and 3rd Thor films, never saw the first two Captain America’s, completely missed the second Avenger’s film, and of course I never went to see Black Panther or the two new Avenger’s movies or either of the Spider-Man films. My interest in these heroes is just lacking. And while I’ve loved DC heroes since I was kid, that was mainly restricted to the animated series and the Nolan Batman films. Even Power Rangers I had limited exposure to, but turning on Dino Thunder, Ninja Storm, or SPD was one of the highlights of my day when it did happen. Seeing the Rangers suit up, fight the bad guy of the week, strike cool poses, it was fantastic for 9 year old me. Current 23 year old me, however, finds it difficult to watch Power Rangers, or any live action tokusatsu show,as they tend to feel kind of cheesy, not to mention I’ve been spoiled by the production values of Hollywood superhero films that watching anything older or lower budget feels like a chore. And yet, both SSSS.Gridman and Netflix’s Ultraman made it through the net and were extremely enjoyable, keeping me engaged from one episode to the next.
A part of me really wants to watch the entirety of the Ultra Series to truly understand Ultraman and related works. These are the kinds of heroes that I’ve long loved, but seen too little of. Perhaps Hideaki Anno’s Shin Ultraman will be exactly what I need.