Maskman Revisited

For Maskman which I read wasn't that popular or something but I enjoyed it much as a child with the dub names Michael, Leonard, Adrian, Eloisa and Mary Rose though now I prefer to affectionately refer to them in their real names as Takeru, Kenta, Akira, Haruka and Momoko.  Now for my memories...

The Maskman team was for me one of the deepest cast even if Kenta and Momoko didn't get that much episode focus or Takeru and Momoko didn't really talk much, just professionally though I later shipped them.  But at first, I was hoping Takeru and Ial to reunite.  For Takeru, he became my instant favorite or maybe because I tend to play extreme favoritism with red rangers or he does get a lot of focus as well or his rivalries with Igam and Kiros were also fun to watch.  For Momoko, she was easily my pink ranger crush before Kimberly of MMPR came to existence but I was delighted to see her actress act in Jetman as a guest character.  Kenta and Akira for me are fun characters with a good balance of serious focus episodes (ex. Kenta falling for a monster disguised as a woman, Akira's Fencer Unas arc) and for Haruka, hmmm she somewhat defined my ideal woman.  The show in itself with the concept of Aura power (which was later used in Dairanger, Gekiranger and to some extent Shinkenger) and how the Maskmen learn to harness its power in battle is one of the most fun factors ever.  With Director Sugata's help, these team of young people will eventually become saviors of the surface world as well as the underground.  Without these guys, I doubt it great shows like Gosei Sentai Dairanger or Jyuken Sentai Gekiranger will ever be born.

Maskman's love story of Takeru and Ial is one of the reasons why I think this show is pretty good.  Well I was baffled at the idea that Ial was sentenced to be frozen, I thought she died the first time around since I wasn't paying attention to Anagumas' words after Zeba sentenced her to that harsh punishment.  But later, I discovered she was still alive inside that ice coffin, for some reason people encased in that ice coffin somehow live while naturally, freezing people kills them!  I guess it's some kind of enchantment that sentences people to a painful existence until they eventually die but it wasn't explained.  As for the end of it, I thought it was pretty okay that Takeru and Ial split since they were too different and she had her responsibilities to face.  So did this concept create Timeranger's cryogenically frozen criminals?  Maybe.

There was me and the issue of the two robots.  So I pretty much thought it was at its experimental stage and since these two robots didn't combine, I wonder why a second robot was necessary back then.  But then hey, it's still in its experimental stage!  The Great Five was a good robot, I didn't like Galaxy Robo at first but eventually I grew to love Galaxy Robo better than Great Five especially with its backstory and cool fighting except the tit guns were pretty funny.  In fact, I like the fact that Galaxy Robo was the robot to show up in the finale!

Now for Tube.  I guess there are two things the audience knows that most of the characters in Maskman don't know.  First there is Zeba is being a monster, I already suspected he wasn't human from the very beginning even evidenced by the close up- I'll admit that he pretty much scared the shit out of me as a child with how cruel he can get.  Second there was Igam's gender- so people did have their disbelief to why the Maskmen were deceived into believing Igam was a guy when in fact it's obvious she's a girl, kind of like the Mulan situation.  For the most interesting villain has to be Prince Igam aside from her gender guise, she was furious at her sister Ial for loving a surface dweller and smearing the Igam name, to which Takeru is not aware she is a female though it's obvious (wish they didn't have her heels!) and why she felt sad about Baraba's death despite their open rivalry.  Baraba and Oyobur felt pretty standard to me while Fumin was more than just a catwoman, she was Igam's best friend!   As for Zeba, I thought that the slow revelation of him being a monster of sorts wasn't surprising considering even by looking at the closeup, he is obviously inhuman.  I think he ended up ruling Tube while Igam and Ial were but children so they weren't able to oppose his tyrannical rule, and two he may have brainwashed Igam into becoming his loyalist which also adds more interest to the latter.  The bitter irony was that Zeba was actually an underground monster and supposedly just a monster of the week but he he took over since his power was that great, only when the Igam twins are reunited can he be defeated.  I just thought also most of Tube's monster plots and execution were pretty scary except for that face-swapping one which was comedic.  The Mebius tunnel, the turning of humans into monsters, etc. were real nightmare fuel and the Unglers are plain creepy.

There came the in-between villain of Kiros who I practically think is the show's best villain ever.  He gathered up treasures as much as he could and he eventually found Ial to be his desire.  So pretty much, I was baffled to that if he likes hot girls, why didn't he attempt to flirt with Momoko or any other girls?  Maybe Ial's his only type though I think he's a pervert of sorts.  For me, he made the show more interesting than it already was especially when he baffles not only the Maskmen but also Tube since he desires Ial that much, I guess that's what kept him from molesting other girls though he's also played around with the feelings of another girl.  His rivalry with Takeru contrasted two very irreconcilable parts- lust vs. love.  His lust for Ial vs. Takeru's love for Ial was an interesting rivalry.  For his death?  Well, pretty much sums up a laser guided karma against him!

Overall, Maskman should get more respect and not be underrated.  If it wasn't for Maskman, I doubt it Super Sentai will get better.


  1. Your comment exactly, without Maskman there would'nt be a Dairangers or Gekirangers. I felt cheated in episode one of Gokaigers that they did not have Red Mask nor the rest of the team to fight or pose with the rest of Dai and Gekirangers as the two team was the only ones together. The series is also a Homage to Fighting General Daimos with the forbidden love affair between a earth hero and a alien princess and a giant truck robot as well. The Light will always Shine, Aura Mask!


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