Starninger: Homages & References to Past Sentai


Rock never dies

Takigawa Kinji is Starninger, the sixth hero in the latest instalment of the Super Sentai series, Shuriken Sentai Ninninger.

Born in America to a family of Youkai hunters, Kinji saw his entire family murdered by an unknown Youkai when he was a child. The murder sparked his desire to avenge his family by becoming a better Youkai hunter, which led to him meeting Igasaki Yoshitaka. He was impressed by Igasaki’s ninja technique, which led him on the path to becoming Starninger. Takigawa Kinji/Starninger is portrayed by Tawada Hideya.

On first look, Starninger is an obvious homage to Tenpuu Ninja Shurikenger of Ninpuu Sentai Hurricanger, but upon closer inspection, we have discovered more references to past Sentai in Starninger’s design as well as Kinji’s personality.

Here’s what we found:

1) Jiraiya/Ninja Black


Kinji wears a very old Western cowboy-inspired outfit which is similar to Ninja Black/Jiraiya as seen when he first appeared in Ninja Sentai Kakuranger (1994), but that’s not the only similarity. Both Kinji and Jiraiya speak English and also had their families killed and swore to take revenge on the Youkai who did it.

Both of them are also known as American Ninja in their respective series.

2) Shurikenger


Starninger’s main weapon is the Star Sword-Gun as opposed the the main Ninninger’s Ichiban-tou. The Star Sword-Gun is a guitar shaped sword that also doubles as a gun, this weapon is very similar to the Ninjamisen Mammoth Guitar used by Shurikenger in Ninpuu Sentai Hurricanger (2002).

The Star Sword-Gun utilizes a dual element Furai Nin Shuirken as it’s main elemental attacks, one of Wind and one of Thunder, which we feels like another tribute to the Hayate-do and Ikazuchi-do ninja academies representing the Hurricanger and Goraijer. The wind elemental attack is known as Hurricane-ja and the thunder elemental attack is known as  Thunder-ja.

Aside from sharing a similar weapon, Starninger also tends to speak in English much like Shurikenger. Starninger’s constant exclaiming of ” YEEEHAWWW!” is reminiscent of Shurikenger’s “HI DEE HO!!!”.

3) Shinken Gold


Starninger shares the most similarities to Shinken Gold from Samurai Sentai Shinkenger (2009).

  • Both are the sixth member of their respective teams.
  • Both are Gold rangers with blue highlights on their suits.
  • Both built their own mecha, weapons and henshin item.
  • Both transformation items are based on stereotypical cultural foods, with Starninger’s being a Burger (American) while Shinken Gold’s being a Sushi (Japanese).
  • Both became heroes due to influence from their respective clans.
  • Both their motifs are elements that give light. Starninger is “Star” while Shinken Gold is “Light”

It’s almost as if they recycled Shinken Gold’s base design.

4) Oh Red & Red Puncher


Starninger’s star-shaped motif is heavily reminiscent of another hero, Oh Red from Chouriki Sentai Ohranger. Their helmets both have a star-shaped visor and their weapons are star-themed swords, the Star Sword-Gun and Star Riser.

The similarities even extend to their personal mecha, with Starninger’s Rodeomaru having a star-shaped head and a boxing stance while in combat, paying tribute to Red Puncher. Both mecha can also combine with their respective teams’ main robot.

A fitting tribute due to 2015 being Ohranger’s 20th Anniversary.

5) Takizawa Naoto/Time Fire


This is a rather vague similarity. However, when Kinji transforms into Starninger, he will pull out this changer and tosses his hat away in a manner similar to how Takizawa Naoto/Time Fire from Mirai Sentai Timeranger (2000) tosses his cap just before he transforms.


That concludes our list of Starninger similarities with other past Sentai!

Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments if you spot anything!

Flashback Friday #15: Gaoranger vs Super Sentai (2001)


Hyakujuu Sentai Gaoranger VS Super Sentai



Hyakujuu Sentai Gaoranger vs Super Sentai premiered in 2001, in conjunction with the 25th anniversary of the Super Sentai series.

The movie features the Gaoranger teaming up with five Sentai heroes from the franchise’s past: Red Falcon (Choujuu Sentai Liveman), Ginga Blue (Seijuu Sentai Gingaman), Go Yellow (Kyuukyuu Sentai GoGoV), Mega Pink (Denji Sentai Megaranger) and Big One (JAKQ Dengekitai).

With a fairly simple plot to carry things along, the show ramped up the nostalgia factor with stock footage, as well as the opportunity to see some past actors reprising their roles again.

Toku Cosplay Feature: Sean Berry + Andrew Provost

“It’s Morphinominal!”

That’s what Power Ranger/Super Sentai cosplay enthusiasts from down under, Sean Berry (SB) a.k.a. DekaMaster and Andrew Provost (AP) a.k.a. Blue Turbo Ranger, had to say about being Rangers themselves. Inspirational, entertaining and friendly, tokuAsia had a quick chat with these two incredible fans at Supanova!



Sean Berry as DekaMaster

Q: When did you start cosplaying as a Ranger?
The first time I ever cosplayed as a Ranger was at the Armageddon Convention in Melbourne 2012 or 2013. It was when Johnny Yong Bosch came down and myself and some other Ranger cosplayers were chosen to do a promo photo with him to advertise for the convention at the convention.

AP: I started cosplaying just last year in 2014.

Q: Favourite character to cosplay?
SB: DekaMaster/Shadow Ranger, he’s just so bad ass and in my honest opinion has the best looking sword ever. My first character was the Tiger (White) Ranger, he was my favourite as a kid and my next Ranger will be GokaiRed.

AP: It would have to be Blue Racer/Blue Turbo Ranger.  My first cosplay was Zhane from Power Rangers in Space and my next cosplay will be Billy from Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers as we are doing a team-up at our next con 🙂


Andrew Provost as Blue Turbo Ranger

Q: Favourite PR/SS character?
SB: DekaMaster, he’s an awesome character and in both (Sentai/PR) universes I thought his storyline was fantastic especially in Power Rangers S.P.D.

AP: It would have to be Christopher Khayman Lee (Andros/Red Space Ranger) and Melody Perkins (Astronema/Karone/Pink Lost Galaxy Ranger).

Q: What’s your favourite series?
SB: I would have to say it’s a tie (for Power Rangers) between RPM and S.P.D. is a favourite of mine purely because of the character development but when it comes to Super Sentai I have to say Go-Busters…it’s a series I always go back to for repeats as I’m not that big into cheesy or corny series.

AP: It would have to be Megaranger/In Space.

image (2)

Image belongs to cosplayer+photographer

Q: What do you like about PR/SS
SB: I love the giant robots and the character development in the shows, especially in the Super Sentai series. As a cosplayer who does charity work, I always try to capture the character for kids so that it makes them think the Rangers are real. I’ve done a few charity events as Power Rangers and the kids are always excited to meet a Power Ranger so it means a lot to me when I see them smile.

AP: I guess you could say the stories and the epicness that In Space brought with the story line and how it flowed into another series and team ups etc. I grew up watching Power Rangers I was 5 when Mighty Moprhin’ Power Rangers first came out.

Q: What’s your Power Rangers/Super Sentai dream?
SB: I would love to see a movie based on the war Doggie Kruger was in, that would be an awesome movie.

AP: Going to Power Morphicon 2016 and meeting like-minded Ranger cosplayers from all over the world.

Image belongs to cosplayer + photographer

Image belongs to cosplayer + photographer

Q: How has being a Ranger changed your life?
SB: It helped me break out and become someone else  and helped me to meet a lot of people that are in my life and people that I respect and admire for their work and commitment to the fandom.

AP:It’s a blessing, it’s what keeps me going besides working for myself. I’ve made a special bonds with fellow Rangers and we get to meet up throughout the year and a few of us are starting up charity events so that will be a blessing to help out where  can. I’m only a newbie but meeting new friends and talking about which Ranger/team-up cosplays we going to do next so every con is a new adventure, just waiting for when I can fly international for a con.


Q: If someone asked me about being a Ranger I would say:
SB: Find a Ranger suit that best suits who you are and remember they are heroes for kids, know your poses and have fun.

AP: I always told you superheroes didn’t exist, I was wrong I’m looking at one…”Let’s Rocket. ”

Are you a Tokusatsu or Power Ranger cosplayer or do you know one? If you’d like to be featured or know someone who should be, drop me at note at ASAP!