The Tale Of Two Vul Eagles: Sun Vulcan's Two Red Rangers
While watching Sun Vulcan and when I first discovered its existence, I remembered that the show actually had a turnover of responsibility as the red ranger. From episodes 1-23, we had Ryuusuke Oowashi. By episode 23, we had the appearance of Takayuki Hiba as the replacement red ranger at the end. From episodes 24 up to the last we had a totally different red ranger.
During my viewing of Sun Vulcan, I thought Ryuusuke wasn't really all that standing out as a red ranger. The first 23 episodes weren't really anything special and I thought that he's pretty "wooden". I find it weird that I'd think he was wooden considering that I don't find Kenichi Akama "wooden" or that I did enjoy Go-Busters. Maybe, I just am playing my biases here with the first Vul Eagle. So why did he leave? It was said that it's because actor Ryuusuke Kawasaki was a singer. He left the set on purpose to focus on his singing career.
Rather than kill off the first red ranger - they handled his departure quite creatively. In episode 23, one of the Zero Girls died, the original underwater base was destroyed and we have Amazon Killer. In this episode, we see Ryuusuke still fully lead the others to battle. But after the battle, he's called by Commander Arashiyama were NASA has need for his piloting skills. With that in mind, we have Takayuki immediately taking over. The actor's name is Takayuki Godai. Hmmm... doesn't get any weirder than that huh? The write-off was an improvement from Diane Martin's departure in the middle of Battle Fever J which didn't feel too much of a split when Maria Nagisa was introduced. This was also given a shoutout in Akibaranger Season One when Nobuo Akagi was supposed to get "replaced" until they realized they were just part of a TV show.
During the second half of Sun Vulcan, we are introduced to newer stuff with the new red ranger coming in as well. Rather than just be what you'd call another "generic replacement" but he wasn't. Takayuki's term as Vul Eagle II presented a new long lasting tradition of red rangers and swords. He could turn his Vulcan Stick into a katana which he would perform his various movies such as the Hiba Turning Slash and Secret Cross Style Cut. He also had more badass moments out of suit which for me made Sun Vulcan more memorable during its second half than the first half.
Which Vul Eagle was your favorite? Comment!