Dai Sentai Goggle V -- Introduction And Episodes 1-10
Well I guess I won't be really responding to Shogo B'Stard's Turboranger posts -- where he's talking about episode by episode in contrast to what he did with Chojin Sentai Jetman and previously, Kamen Rider Black. I decided some Goggle V marathon right now -- yes, I'm doing it but it doesn't mean that gone will be the weekly Lupinranger vs. Patranger episode reviews (and DO NOT expect me to give magazine scans since I'd rather see Lupin-X/Pat-X in action first).
Goggle V would the beginning of the Hirohisa Soda era -- while Fiveman would be its end -- both series have a "Five" in its title. It would also be the beginning of the era of Takeyuki Suzuki as a head producer for Super Sentai which lasted from 1982 up to 1995 -- a total of 14 installments! Soda wrote a total of nine series straight as its head writer where he inevitably started losing it during Turboranger and Fiveman was where things started looking dark -- until Chojin Sentai Jetman inevitably brought back ratings to normal.
There's one thing you can thin about Soda's era -- he has a love for science fiction and science related plots. Goggle V's plot is one as such where it shows this one truth -- innovation is a double edged sword. Innovation in the hands of Future Science Laboratory will benefit mankind. Innovation in the hands of Deathdark will bring destruction and chaos. Deathdark is an evil organization that has been leading the destruction of various civilizations.
1 -- The first episode begins at Castle Wolfsburg in Germany. Our main hero and soon-to-be red ranger Kenichi Akama (he became my instant favorite just looking at this scene) explores the castle only to discover something -- the time for Deathdark to invade the world has finally come! He meets Professor Hongo who has know much of the history of the Deathdark and their plan to use evil science to conquer the world. Realizing this -- he recruits Kenichi Akama and four more others to become the Goggle V team. These people are Kanpei Kuroda (a chess champion), Saburo Aoyoma (a hockey player), Futoshi Kijima (a zoo worker) and well one very underaged Miki Momozono -- an inspiring gymnast. Speaking of Miki, actress Megumi Okawa really looks like Kaho Takada who's playing Misora Isorugi in Kamen Rider Build!
The villains come in as pretty standard with the wall villain. Granted, I didn't see Goggle V (in its rather awful dub which I'm glad didn't continue) -- it confused me to how settings were. I would be a 15 - 16 year old confused teenager when I discovered the sequence of past Super Sentai series. The main villain Fuehrer Taboo was hiding behind a translucent wall -- a biology project gone wrong. Deathgiller's design almost reminds me of Darth Vader. Oh, I could even think of how Mazurka's design may have inspired Maribaron's outfit in Black RX a couple of years later. Not to mention, we've got both Igaana and Zazoriya.
The first episode does some basics and doesn't show off yet the raw power of the team out-of-suit. Is it me or are everyone getting too easily beaten up by mooks out-of-suit then they end up learning to fight them more often out-of-suit -- only suiting up when fighting the enemy general or the monster? The Goggle V introduce themselves to Shell Mozoo and the Madaramen and it's the very standard first episode fight. They show off their use of gymnastic style fighting with what I call to be very weird weaponry -- yet it's super effective in beating up the bad guys. What's even funnier is that they could actually duplicate their weaponry and everyone takes turns in leading!
What still WTFed me was also how the primitive Goggle V mecha worked aside from the obvious use of stop motion (which made mecha combining SUPER SLOW to look at). What I didn't immediately adjust is the idea that only three out of the five members will pilot Goggle Robo. Wait, aren't we Goggle V? Also, Shell Mozoo wasn't enlarged -- he was absorbed by Fan Kong! I remembered my fear every mecha will pilot a Fan Kong type which would be well -- BORING!
2 -- The episode starts with Goggle V meeting their first enemy Mazurka. She's a mistress of disguise and she may serve as a direct (or indirect) rival of Goggle Pink. The episode features the new monster known as Bird Mozoo -- a telekinetic monster who starts lifting up buildings with PEOPLE in them. Yes, that scene may have been that scary. Can you imagine your friend or loved one going to work and suddenly they died because of a Deathdark attack? That's what this episode shows.
It also shows that the Goggle V do have secondary weapons in their arsenal too -- which their default weapon turns into an upgraded one. The downside is that they can't replicate the secondary weapons for team attack uses. The team also learns more about Deathdark after they retreat. It shows that they aren't invincible either.
In this episode, we also see a bit of the experimentation stage in some way. Both Igaana and Zazoriya are trying to come up with the "perfect robot" to destroy Goggle V. We're introduced to Light Kong and Gorilla Kong. Good thing that those two scientists weren't too focused on brainlessly sending another Fan Kong. Their battle ends with Zazoriya's Light Kong defeating the Gorilla Kong. The Goggle V easily defeat Light Kong.
3 - This episode may have started to justify my reasons why Kenichi is my favorite member in Goggle V. Kenichi is trying to meet his mountain climbing friend Kaji and his sister Mariko. This one had me thinking so for two episodes -- why are we stuck with Mazurka as the lone field commander showing up?
What I love about this one was that the Deathtopia started showing itself head on -- yes that one! But it also somewhat gave a preview of Maskman's three part episode where it felt like a "finale". The Deathtopia starts showing its offensive. The Goggle Caesar files missiles at Deathtopia. It's almost like a finale battle! Not really -- we see Goggle Jet in action against some fighter jets by Deathdark. It was also interesting how this episode started defining Kenichi as a leader. I love how Goggle Yellow used his ball to save his leader. It shows how the leader isn't perfect and he needs his other members to form a formidable team.
Sidenote, I thought about the robot used to revive Octopus Mozoo after the battle. We saw Fan Kong and Light Kong fail. Now we see two more -- Gorilla Kong and Elephant Kong. Both scientists engage in petty rivalry which they may have to put aside.
4 -- This episode is pretty much pink-focused and perhaps one that shows strength isn't everything. It's focused on Miki who gets injured early on when they were trying to stop Deathdark's plan to plant a melon bomb planted by Spider Mozoo. Hmmm... is it me or is Deathdark really fond of idiotic but dangerous experiments? Miki shows her tenacity to survive even after she's wounded. She tries her best to stand up so she could prove that, "Don't underestimate me just because I'm a woman." She shows it best here!
This shows also that heroes don't have to be perfect. Did they make a miscalculation in choosing Miki? There's the flaw in everyone. Miki ends up encouraging Akane. Miki shows her strong resolve which allows her and everyone else to save the day. It was really something when she foiled the melon bomb plan by grabbing the bomb just when it's about to explode. Wow, talk about an unexpected attack when things go too smoothly for the villains!
The episode also introduced the last of the different Kongs -- Kongs that looked different from the monster. The Mammoth Kong is easily dispatched even if it really looked so fearsome!
5 -- The episode starts up with what I'd call early villain tantrums. Fuehrer Taboo loses his patience where he replays the destruction of the first four robots. I love how Igaana and Zazoriya are so terrified of their master! They have to create the new robot or else face his wrath!
Mazurka learns of the legend of a giant snake. She could use it to help Deathdark achieve its purpsoe and she kidnaps a storyteller. This episode also had Zazoriya and Igaana to create the Mantis Kong for Mantis Mozoo to pilot. Well, I guess producers found it too burdensome to create a different robot for each Deathdark monster to have, huh? Which I think really, REALLY makes sense if you made their robot suits have their SAME ability, right?
What I find weird though is that in spite of the failure of Igaana and Zazoriya -- why weren't they punished on-screen in this episode?
6 -- The first Goggle Black focus episode and the first time Deathgiller shows up. Deathgiller happens to be the frequent rival of Goggle Red -- though he has also beaten up the others too! This episode features an elaborate plot where they steal various jewels to create a laser that could kill the Goggle V team. They discuss about their gems which are ruby, emerald, sapphire, topaz and diamond. Gecko Mozoo has been stealing these and someone else is getting the blame.
We meet a wrestler who was dismissed for his actions. He's known as the Masked Wrestler acted by the late Kin Oomae who died last 2011. He acts as Santa Claus even when it's not snowing. Wait, doesn't that suit get that hot? He develops a friendship with Kanpei and hopes he can clear his name out of the accusation that he stole the jewels. It was amazing to see some raw power here. Too bad that Oomae had to die last 2011.
7 -- The first Goggle Yellow episode. Futoshi helps a boy whose father was presumed dead. This also introduced Dr. Igaana's first appearance to the Goggle V. What bothers me is that why does Mazurka keep showing up in every field battle? It seems she's always accompanied by someone. I guess she's an important field inspector. I like this Goggle Yellow episode for this reason -- it shows how a comic relief character can also be pretty badass as well.
This episode also features the teleporting machine which is helping Neko (Cat) Mozoo in his appearing and disappearing act. I just find it despicable for how Deathdark can turn innovation ugly. You can think of how they're forcing a scientist to his his teleportation machine to aid their monster. Fortunately, the plan was stopped and the scientist is saved.
8 -- The first Goggle Blue related episode. They meet with Sally Nakajima (who Saboru seems to have a crush on) who is trying to protect a project that will reduce the effect of catastrophes in the Vacuum project. This doesn't sit too well with Deathdark's destructive science. It's no surprise that Deathdark always goes after innovators -- for the reason that they want to monopolize it to their own ends and use it to rule over the world with an iron fist.
This episode also shows the problem of science without ethics. The real creators used Sally as a decay or a "small sacrifice" but sheesh -- that's just unethical. I don't know did Sally agree to it but it's because she's a cop -- she's ready to sacrifice her life but no one should take such a position for granted. But not to care about her? What were the scientists behind the Vacuum Project thinking? Sure, they could save a lot of lives but again, wasn't that too cruel? I really felt Saboru's pain and I can't blame him for his actions in this episode.
Also, this episode shows that Moth Mozoo's function wasn't related to some half-brained plot of the week. Instead, he was merely created to have a monster for Deathgiller and Mazurka to command along. Hmmm...
9 -- This episode is literally on SHROOMS and yes, the episode is on shrooms. Its latest monster is a tapir monster who's disguising himself as a village elder in a still primitive area of Japan. Yes' it's a samurai village. So how did that area even exist? He was actually using some villagers who have very little hi-technology to plant shrooms for whatever dangerous operation they were having.
This would also be the first episode for Miki to actually do her disguise thing. What Miki lacks in strength and age -- she makes it up with her wits. I like how she disguised herself and used her charm to fool Tapir Mozoo and reveal that he usurped the true elder's position. The whole scam was exposed and the village is freed. But seriously -- I hope somebody decides to bring in some new technology to that Edo-era village there soon.
10 -- This episode asks, "What's your motive behind pursuing innovation?" A friend of Kanpei known as Hideo Konuma has supposedly created a hybrid plant but he wasn't always outstanding. He's gaining attention left and right. But how did he even learn to create it? He's getting attention but again where did he get it?
It turned out that Hideo got the equipment from Deathdark. How he got it is left unknown but it certainly doesn't sit too well with Deathdark. How does it feel when their machine is caught? They were up to creating a deadly man-eating plant. To recover it, they create Mouse Mozoo to steal it back and create the human eating plant -- a very fake version of it. It doesn't even have that much nightmare fuel in that. So how did one child not get a single scratch after that rubber plant was trying to eating it? I guess they didn't want to make it too scary either -- compared to some later old school Super Sentai where bleeding happens a lot!
The episode makes you think about this one. Sure you need to innovate but why are you innovating? Using the machine of Deathdark and trying to pursue fame is definitely the wrong way. It also showed that Deathdark could have used that machine for good but instead chose to use its innovative properties for evil.