Time For A Lighter VS. Darker Shade Of Red
Well the friendly debate still resumes itself while Shogo B'Stard decides to do another two parter (Part 1 and Part 2) -- I'm going to do a one part reply once more. So let's get started, shall we? I thought about it that maybe Tatsuya IS my favorite character -- Naoto may have ended up as my second favorite character. It's almost like how I had Ryu as my favorite Jetman member -- whilst Gai becomes my second favorite in said show. Again, spoilers ahead to read at your own risk!
I'd like to bring some arguments about 6th rangers during the 20th century starting from Zyuranger up to Gingaman. We can take a look at Zyuranger where we had Burai/Dragon Ranger first appear in episode 17 and Kou/Kibaranger first appeared in episode 17 of Dairanger. Riki first appeared in episode 26 of Ohranger -- same went with Hyuga's return when he becomes the second Bullblack in Gingaman. But in the case of Timeranger, it's episode 28. Yup, it's the latest one and try to get it that no matter how good a show is -- it'll always have its flaws!
Here's the big difference between Tatsuya and Naoto. Tatsuya has always been trying to befriend his rival Naoto. Naoto is disgusted with how Tatsuya turns every opportunity for power. Naoto is dirt poor and tries to gain power by every means possible. I thought about how Naoto wants to fight fate and prove himself better -- which he soon gets by becoming Time Fire! The arc comprises of episodes 28 up to 30 which I think slowed things down. I even felt like Naoto should have appeared a little earlier if he's going to come in as a "necessary conflict" -- plus I tend to compare him to Hojo in Kamen Rider Agito to the point I wish actor Shinji Kasahara were signed up for Agito as well. Kasahara as Hojo would've been pretty badass!
So where's the difference between Naoto and Eric? I think about it that Naoto is indeed a bigger power hungry douche (yet he has a heart of gold within) than Eric who seems more tolerable. Eric does appear to be less of one since I doubt it cultural standards will even allow Eric to go that far. I think about Naoto as some kind of anti-hero that would come from Toshiki Inoue's book -- except he was written by Kobayashi! TBH, it didn't seem to matter at that time whether Inoue of Kobayashi were writing episodes related to Naoto -- they'd probably have only a few differences. In Eric's case, he kept the Time Force Rangers' secret a secret and he didn't try to take over the City Guardians -- pretty much the opposite of Naoto who wanted to exploit it and who tried to take over the City Guardians. I guess it's more of the fact that TV-Y7-FV ratings couldn't allow Eric to become such a huge douche while Japan's standard allowed it -- ironically Gaoranger up to this year's Super Sentai are significantly less serious and violent huh?