Parallelism Of Headwriting Works Done By Toshiki Inoue And Yasuko Kobayashi


Toshiki Inoue and Yasuko Kobayashi were both writers that both have developed some status in the Tokusatsu's writings. So I thought about writing on them and comparing their similarities in JEFusion.

Chojin Sentai Jetman vs. Seijuu Sentai Gingaman vs. Samurai Sentai Shinkenger

So what do Jetman, Gingaman and Shinkenger have in common? They really derive a lot from the era of Hirohisa Soda's era as a headwriter and more importantly Takeyuki Suzuki as the producer. Now let's move forward to these masterpieces which I think Jetman and Shinkenger are just plain overrated while Gingaman gets enough credit.

Inoue had done his contribution as a secondary writer for Flashman, Maskman, Liveman, Turboranger and Fiveman before he became Jetman's headwriter. During Kobayashi's term she was an importat secondary writer for Megaranger where she did big time but before that, she wrote one episode of Janperson and some episodes for B-Fighter and B-Fighter Kabuto. Then she became Gingaman's headwriter. Both Jetman and Gingaman became major hits during their airing.

Kobayashi would be involved again big time as a major contributor to GoGoFive before becoming Timeranger's headwriter. She would also be involved in other Super Sentai series as an important secondary writer for Boukenger before she became Shinkenger's headwriter. She was also the head writer for Sailor Moon, Kamen Rider Den-O and Kamen Rider Ryuki. Inoue was involved with Kamen Rider Ryuki. Shinkenger also become a monster hit that it really ended up having a post-TV special and was the first Super Sentai to have a crossover with Kamen Rider.

Mirai Sentai Timeranger vs. Kamen Rider Agito

Perhaps both the "Magnum Opus" of both writers, it was easy to follow a year apart. Inoue was involved more with Kamen Rider Kuuga which may have prepared him to become Kamen Rider Agito's headwriter. I guess that explained why he only wrote two episodes for Timeranger while I felt like he should've been a major contributor to it. So what's with these two supposedly magnum opus shows?

Timeranger ends up as a complex battle against fate itself. It had some mysteries and layers into it as not everything was so revealed immediately. As the series went on, some unsolved mysteries started to open then we had a not-so-good finale. Then again, neither Kobayashi nor Inoue really wrote that good a finale for most of their shows. I felt like Timeranger's finale was really had some gray areas like what was Captain Ryuya's role exactly as a time-manipulating version of Masato Kusaka? The finale wasn't really all that good IMO for a series that got a well-deserved post-TV series special in the form a clip show of the Timerangers featuring the 23 previous Super Sentai seasons. But unlike Jetman's Hero Encyclopedia, Timeranger's was not part of the series' canon.

A year later, we had Kamen Rider Agito which was even more complicated. Most of the battles of Agito usually focused on supernatural evolution. The real villain of Agito seemed to be more of mankind's destiny than the Lords themselves. During Agito it was easy to see some Timeranger influence on the battle of fate. One character in Timeranger was notable for me namely Hojo Toru who I felt was the show's version of Naoto Takizawa. A lot of Agito's plots weren't easily revealed on hand until the show unfolds everything later on. Shoudl I mention that Hojo Toru might really be the show's version of Naoto Takizawa?

Kamen Rider Faiz vs. Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters

This is when both shows where the writers either hit it or miss it. During Faiz, Inoue was basically still trying but ends up making some bad decisions like playing "pass around the Rider belts" in several scenarios. The show was trying to reclaim some past successes. One example of what might have annoyed me in the show or who annoyed me was Masato Kusaka. I felt like Inoue was actually trying to do his own version of Timeranger's Captain Ryuya. Like Ryuya, Masato was more or less manipulating everyone for his own convenience and ended up dying as a result of his own actions. Except that Masato was more active as a troll while Ryuya was more subtle about being a troll. The whole series really had signs of Inoue really burning out while giving his all. He was probably proud of his own work to appear in the finale!

After Shinkenger's success we have Kobayashi trying her best with Go-Busters. But unlike Power Rangers RPM, the show didn't really meet that much good reception. I wonder did Toei really want to milk on RPM's success for this show? She was trying to go back to darker and edgier plots but I guess executive meddling killed her scripts. Perhaps she wanted to cause the Messiah Virus to infect the world like the Venjix Virus did in RPM but Naomi Takebe and company intervened. Super Sentai was trying to go back to its more serious roots than the monster hit called Gokaiger. After several tries, she really showed she wasn't all cut out and her next script wasn't going to be any different.

Kamen Rider Kiva vs. Ressha Sentai ToQGer

During Kiva and ToQGer, both Inoue and Kobayashi were more or less like giving up in trying to write a good story. Both scenarios felt like trying to repeat the success of a past tandem. During Agito it was Shinichiro Shirakura and Inoue. During Shinkenger it was Takaaki Utsunomiya and Kobayashi. So we had Shirakura and Inoue with Faiz as well as Utsunomiya and Kobayashi with ToQGer in trying to reclaim a past success but may have failed. Both series might be best summarized as, "That's it, I give up."

Kamen Rider Kiva is pretty much hit or miss but I'm personally a fan of the series. Not so much on ToQGer. Both shows tried the "horror-comedy" approach with funny villains (Fangires and Shadow Lines) and naive protagonists. Wataru and Light were both naive protagonists but I felt like the former was miles better than Light. ToQGer was really trying to do Kiva's formula into Super Sentai but Kobayashi was also having that inevitable moment when a writer either gives up or gets a burn out or both. Both shows had some funny stuff going on with ghouls and ghosts but I felt like that the shows just had the wrong writer to handle them. I felt like Riku Sanjo could've done better with Kamen Rider Kiva and Naruhisa Arakawa with ToQGer.

Comments

  1. Here is another parallel that you also missed and right there it should have been the end of Kobayashi's career. The Battle Royale oriented Rider series of Kanen Rider Ryuki. As good if not better then the Rider series that are out today. Ryuki's nahilistic theme of killing and survival really turned fans off as a shift of viewers entered the spectrum. 555 was a return of the classic Rider series but unfortunately after episode 32 the point is off and yes the passing of the belt and the resistance that was to face the Smart Brain organization as a whole which is really pulling the strings with the take over and human massacre is replaced with the hustle with Lucky Clover and now the Arch Orphenoch. I don't mind the Lucky Clover as the Enforcers of Smart Brain or the second coming of the Arch Orphenoch. It wasn't explained as the main plot or Orphenochs are vampires that are out to eat human souls as the visual was more then just the style of executions! I was feeling 555 when it came out in 2003, eventually it was a disappointing let down similar to the end of that year as well!

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  2. Outside of Super Sentai and Kamen Rider, Kobayashi also wrote on Attack on Titan and Zero: Black Blood. Take note that AoT S1 aired in 2013, in between when Go-Busters and ToQGer aired. And as we all know, AoT became such a huge hit, so I gotta wonder was Kobayashi really that burnt out or what. Or, by the time Toei picked her up, once again, for ToQGer, she was already traumatized by the executive meddling she experienced in Ryuki and Go-Busters that she knew she knew she couldn't implement her writing the way she wanted it to be that she gave up writing a good story for ToQGer.

    As for Zero: Black Blood, which is a Garo spin-off mini-series which features Dragon Orphnoch as the titular Makai Knight, it aired at the same time as ToQGer. But I gotta wonder how she and Riria (since she was also in said mini-series) both that abd ToQGer. Must have been stressful for both of them......

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  3. Kobayashi seems to be busy still as she is writing the web series Kamen Rider Amazons which is a reimagining of the 70s series and has no connection to First or Next! She may have been burnt but still active and hope she delivers again!!!

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