How Much Of Old School Super Sentai Have You Seen Anyway?
Looking back at the time this blog started, I would admit I barely saw a lot of Super Sentai series, pretended to know everything and just relied on fan sites while I just merely started getting into Super Sentai itself and I would really just be a noobie during that time. Back then with my childhood up to my early teens, I can remember Goggle V, Bioman, Maskman and Jetman but later, I soon got into last decade's Super Sentai where I would still watch them on Youtube, later I had an external hard drive but I was still stuck with an old CPU, you know a lot of constraints or I just watched Super Sentai left and right without understanding the context. When I look back at that time I started as the fool who pretended to know everything about Tokusatsu and got 99/100 answers wrong in more than one instance... now I tend to ask myself the question, "How much of old school Super Sentai have you seen?" then later, I end up throwing the question at others after I ask myself that question.
How much of old school Super Sentai have you seen? I want to throw that question at people who think that Super Sentai gets better every year because how can they make the judgment that Super Sentai gets better every year unless they check out the older ones to judge the quality of progress because the quality goes up and goes down, like life is not always going up. Just because I usually prefer the older series, doesn't mean I won't check out the newer series then I give my critique. Some can say, "You're watching backwards!" but here's what I say, "There's much of old school Super Sentai I haven't checked out. I can't say which series is better or worse, unless I check out the old school Super Sentai." then of course, comes my list of series that I watched from start to end.
I am afraid but some people are just too stuck with the Gokaiger Hype, even to call it the best Super Sentai ever when I don't think it is, worse some of them can be forceful to shove it down into the throats of other fans. Sure, it had a lot of the old alumni coming back making a nostalgic appearance for older fans but I just feel that series is overrated. True that Naruhisa Arakawa is a great writer but I'll admit, I tend to pick Yasuko Kobayashi or Toshiki Inoue over him. I always enjoyed Arakawa's other headwriting works like Kamen Rider Kuuga, Abaranger and Dekaranger but I feel this - Gokaiger IS overrated and gets too much credit. Personally, I think Shinkenger is better than Gokaiger in terms of writing and execution.
Gokaiger is an anniversary but it does not really contain all you need to know about Super Sentai. It's more like a review class or an introduction where you imagine all 34 Super Sentai series get crammed into one big timeline. The more I watch it, it's more like introducing you to some old school stuff like the teacher says, "Goranger is the first Super Sentai." then think, the teacher does not discuss all the 84 episodes, how the Gorangers came to be or the death of Kiranger II. In the Jetman episode, it does not explain why Gai Yuki died, all that's revealed is that he's dead. In the Dairanger episode, no mention of Gorma was ever made. You know what I mean, where are the in-betweens shown n those episodes? You need to freaking watch them from start to end if you expect to avoid making more of my 99/100 error rate!
I think that a lot of fans who are calling Gokaiger as the best Super Sentai for me is an overstatement. Sure it's a nice anniversary but I like Boukenger (though Arakawa should be the head writer instead of Aikawa for better character development) and Gaoranger better, no offense. I felt like the Boukenger villains were better than the Zangyack or Gaoranger had tons of fun. The reason why I think it's an overstatement is because as I'd like to ask, "How much of old school Super Sentai have you seen anyway?" after that statement is made. I believe that a lot of people who are making that statement haven't seen much of old school Super Sentai to really make a solid judgment since it's just the tip of the iceberg.
When I mean tip of the iceberg, you haven't gotten lower than that. The iceberg is much bigger than you think especially when you dive lower. Gokaiger does tell you something about Super Sentai of the past but it's not enough to tell you everything. Besides, how many of the pre-Zyuranger era series have you seen anyway? In my case, I'll confess I am still loosely familiar with them. The ones I'm most familiar with are Bioman, Maskman, Liveman, Turboranger, Fiveman and Jetman. In short, there's still a lot for me to check out and I don't think I'll be able to watch all of them either. I really want to see more of Changeman and Flashman because they got me hooked but, come on where are the other subs for those shows? I'll admit I've tried watching them raw but what's the use really if I didn't understand the dialogue, right?
Also, saying that every year of Super Sentai gets better is just stupid as I mentioned earlier, I want to throw the question, "How much of old school Super Sentai have you you seen anyway to give that judgment?" Based on my random guesses, I am thinking that they may have not seen much at all. The idea that Super Sentai or any Tokusatsu franchise gets better every year is just downright stupid. If I don't like certains seasons of Power Rangers, it's not because it's old school or new school... the bottom line is writing quality and execution, not whether or not it was old school or new school.
The example I gave above is the picture of the three dinosaur themed Super Sentai. I do end up hearing people who say Kyoryuger is the best but the reasons aren't substantiated by something I could respect. I feel like it's stupid to say, "Hey Kyoryuger is better than Zyuranger and Abaranger because it's the newest dinosuar Super Sentai." but I wonder, how much of Zyuranger or Abaranger have they seen before they can judge and then say, "Woohoo! Kyoryuger is the best!" but what if they only had read some information or two, only watched bits and pieces. It's just like my mistake of random guessing and careless writing has led to one stupid event after the other. Likewise, every Super Sentai does not get better or worse by era but it's by its writing quality and who's in charge.
If anything, Ninninger may be an improvement from ToQGer (where Yasuko Kobayashi burned out beyond belief) and Kyoryuger which I still feel is a chore to watch. In due fairness, Takaharu may be an idiot but he's no attention grabber like Daigo Kiryu plus I'm seeing signs he's getting better. I think that while Ninninger is more of a toy commercial but hey, at least everyone's improving! Is it better than Kakuranger? No. But is it entertaining to keep me happy? Much of a yes. If there's any reason why I'm not having much of a good time with how Super Sentai is as of late is because of their lack of quality that the other seasons had. Besides, have they even heard of the word "preference"?
Watching more of old school Super Sentai helps develop a more solid critique with the newer Super Sentai. Besides, looking at past and present performance is the only way to assess what went wrong, what went better and what went worse. I don't want to blindly accept that Super Sentai is better because of whatever reasons other blind fans will have.