Super Sentai Over the Years: A 40th Anniversary Special - Part 1: 1975 - 1985
Previous Review: Daimajin Kanon (2010)
1) Teams with Gimmick Dependent Arsenals
Gimmick, a word that has been commonly used by the Tokusatsu community in recent years. Super Sentai did not introduce the infamous annual gimmick until Engine Sentai Go-onger, with its Engine Souls. While there are different gimmicks every year, certain teams are totally useless without them. Why? When you have a changer, a weapon and a mecha that requires said gimmick to function, you know things are bound to go horribly wrong when said gimmick is rendered useless, especially when the heroes magically don’t know how to fight anymore. Naturally, gimmick teams are prone to have the…
2) “Gotta Catch ‘Em All” Plot
No, no, no, I don’t mean by them running around catching Pokémon. But if you want a Super Sentai series that is borderline childish in terms of designs ala Pokémon, there’s Engine Sentai Go-onger for you. The heroes are not only required to go hunt down these giant vehicular beings known as Engines throughout the series, but they are to also tame them in order to acquire them as partners. This plot would become a regular trend in future series due to auxiliary mecha becoming a norm in recent years.
3) Engrish Speaking Characters
Yes, Japanese speaking gratuitous English is funny, like the time when GaoYellow screamed “OH MY GOD!” or when DekaBreak thought everything was “Nonsense!”. But when you have characters who are claimed to be Europeans or Americans yet they speak contextually incorrect English, let alone repeating them like a broken record, it gets really irritating and a sore to the ears. You might as well get a gratuitous Japanese speaking white dude onboard instead.
4) Dancing ED Sequence
Ah yes, the dancing ED sequence. As the name suggests, it is a sequence where the heroes and heroines dance to the ending theme. Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger first introduced this insignificant feature, which quickly became a norm with future series, though there were a few series that didn’t bother to implement it. It’s cute to see the cast members doing something silly and upbeat, but not every series needed it. Take Shuriken Sentai Ninninger‘s ending theme for example. The song isn’t exactly a dance tune, yet they still make the actors and actresses dance like a bunch of idiots for no reason!
5) Recycled Motifs
Having run for 40 years without any hiatus, recycling past ideas and motifs are inevitable. However, it becomes even more glaring when it’s a team with the same set of vehicles or animals. Fans have been voicing out possible motifs that could be used in the Super Sentai franchise across forums, but sadly, none of them ever happened. It’s probably just one of Toei’s lame excuses to have a huge “same motif!” team-up for no reason other than fanservice, just like how all the dinosaur teams were gathered in Kyoryuger VS Go-Busters. C’mon, Toei, get creative. It’s sad to see that fans can come up with more innovative ideas than you can.