Toei's Toku Series Celebrating Their Big Anniversary This 2019

It's the first day of 2019 and it's going to be time for that annual role call for major anniversaries this year. I'd like to greet the following series that will be celebrating their major anniversaries this year!

40th anniversary


Battle Fever J

Battle Fever J was the first series to be called "Super Sentai" prior to the retroactive inclusion of both Goranger and JAKQ in the 90s. So why is this series important? It featured the arrival of the first giant robo or Megazord, it brought the yearly Super Sentai franchise back on track (after JAKQ got cancelled for its lack of popularity) and Super Sentai has been a yearly franchise ever since!

Skyrider

Skyrider is pretty much the reimagining of the Showa era Kamen Rider franchise. The show was succeeded by the less popular Kamen Rider Super-1 (and I'd actually pick Kamen Rider Fourze any day). I just had a thought that I wonder if a new generation of Kamen Riders after Zi-O would probably try to modernize his concept too? I'm watch the show right now but as said -- I just don't really care too much about old school Kamen Rider from the Showa era!

35th anniversary


Chodenshi Bioman

Bioman is my first childhood series and it turned 30 last 2014. I couldn't get over the nostalgia of Bioman and rewatching it in JAPANESE and ignoring that horrendous Filipino-English dub by Telesuccess was a huge relief. What bothered me were how often the Beastnoids just kept retreating and I actually liked it when both Messerjuu and Aquagaiger were killed off midseason. Also, this show also bothered me a lot because I once wanted to be the world's greatest genius and wanted to turn myself into a mecha human like Doctor Man did.

30th anniversary


Kosoku Sentai Turboranger

Coincidence? Last was the 25th anniversary of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers then the very first Super Sentai to feature teens with attitude celebrates its 30th this year. I know this show tends to get underappreciated by some due to the fact that Hirohisa Soda was already burning out yet I can't deny this show makes me forget Mighty Morphin' in spite of that!

Kido Keiji Jiban

The success of Robocop last 1987 (the same year of Maskman, Kamen Rider Black and Metalder) brought us Jiban two years later. However, Jiban is too mild considering that it's written by the late Noboru Sugimura which has the child of the week. Rookie cop Naoto Tamura is killed in action by a Bioron and is revived as Mobile Cop Jiban to fight against the Bioron Syndicate. Quite a coincidence that last year that Janperson the next Robocop-inspired hero by Toei turned 25.

25th anniversary


Ninja Sentai Kakuranger

The first ninja Super Sentai series though we did have the ninja-themed Jiraiya (which was a year before Jiban) and the missing "Sentai" known as Inazuma Rainbowman. It was the very first show to feature a female leader in Tsurihime/Ninja White. The show did feature the short-term appearance of Kenichi Endo who probably had his reasons for leaving said show. Sadly, much of its stock footage was badly implemented with Mighty Morphin' during its third season -- yet giving me another reason why I prefer not to watch Power Rangers.


Blue SWAT

Okay, I haven't seen Blue SWAT yet okay? But I hope I can see it from start to end one day. If anything, it's the sixth police-themed Metal Hero since we've had Jiban, Winspector, Solbrain, Exceedraft and Janperson.

20th anniversary


Kyukyu Sentai GoGoFive

Save the Earth! Save the lives! This is the first show that actually belongs to an ambitious era. I always called this show as "Chikyu Sentai Fiveman done right" where it combines the rescue theme of Winspector and family theme of Fiveman. I'm glad I could watch this show without thinking too much or anything at all about Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue one bit -- all except whenever I want to mention that Carter's coolheaded approach is always more welcome than Matoi's Drill Sergeant Nasty all the while I always say Nagare (a scientist) and Chad (a water sportsman) are too different from each other. Instead, I'm just thinking of how Toei managed to correct Fiveman's family theme with a  much better show.

15th anniversary


Tokosou Sentai Dekaranger

Whoever spreads the Power Rangers snob rumor mill lie that Power Rangers SPD is more popular than Dekaranger in Japan needs to get their asses kicked by the Galactic Police! I do have the Dekaranger hype a lot that I got excited over the Dekaranger vs. Gavan movie or that Kyuranger episode where the Deka Red and Gavan ran into Lone Starr errr Lucky -- SPD never got into those scenes. I admit it's been 15 years yet this series still holds a special place in my heart. I love how Dekaranger went against the status quo and tried to actually do a case of the week mixed with Super Sentai elements, where monsters of the week were more of criminals approved of deletion than the typical Super Sentai monster of the week. Also, Abrella's function as the recurring villain would pretty much be similar to that of Takaoka's role in Solbrain.


Kamen Rider Blade

Like it or hate it but I'm probably among the members of its fan following. I know the acting wasn't so good but it's not as bad as most Disney's Power Rangers era or Power Rangers Samurai! I do love the idea of the Battle Royale in this show and I'm actually a fan of it. I remembered watching this one awfully dubbed in Cartoon Network before I bought a new PC so I could watch the fan subs with Japanese audio.

10th anniversary


Samurai Sentai Shinkenger

I always have had the hype for this series and it used to be my top favorite in Yasuko Kobayashi's list of series until I watched Timeranger from start to end. I even wanted to call it the second to the last decent Super Sentai series while I think it's nearly as overrated as Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger itself. I just had a thought about how this series felt like it gave me a lot of childhood nostalgia such as a red ranger named Takeru, Kotoha's role is quite similar to Ako (though personalities differ), Chiaki being a runt among the guys, Ryunosuke's hammy tendencies making him either a reliable second in command or a terrible leader depending on the scenario and Mako is a team mom to everyone. Also, I'm just glad that GMA-7 decided not to air this one horribly dubbed in Tagalog -- hmmm make Rhian Ramos the voice of Mako anyone?! Not to mention, it was the first Super Sentai series that officially had a crossover with Kamen Rider. Oh yeah, those Power Rangers snobs who spread the rumor that Japan prefers Power Rangers Samurai are going to suffer the wrath of the samurai!


Kamen Rider Decade

People know how much Decade is still at the bottom of my list, right? But recently I stared reconsidering some of its positives. Sure, I've called it the unofficial sequel of Saban's dreaded old shame called Mashed Rider but it does things better in many ways. Better special effects, a better crossover than "A Friend in Need" and its movie as well as finale (the crossover with W) still puts the finale of Saban's Mashed Rider to even greater depths of shame. In spite of it getting canceled mid-year for some reason yet actor Masahiro Inoue still appears in later installments. Toei still has no reason to treat this as an old shame in contrast to Saban treating Mashed Rider as his old shame. At least, Decade was actually having some effort but just that things didn't go as well as they were planned.


Kamen Rider W

This is the first Heisei era Kamen Rider to air on the "-ber" months instead of late January to February and the tradition has changed ever since -- assuming that Kamen Rider Zi-O isn't destined to end together with the Heisei era this year. I thought this was where I actually do enjoy Riku Sanjo. Sure, I don't find myself all to fond of Kyoryuger but it was the reason why I actually was curious about how he'd do Super Sentai. I also like how this show brought forth many cool fight scenes one way or another.

5th anniversary


Ressha Sentai ToQGer

Like it or not but I've actually had somewhat of a change of mind and heart about this series after 2014. Sure, it's a burnout season for Kobayashi but if I could actually still have a heart for Fiveman which was Hirohisa Soda's worst season or for Kamen Rider Kiva which was Toshiki Inoue's worst season -- then why can't I have a heart for this show? After a bit of rewatch that I may not put it on top of my list but it still deserves the praise it gets from its fandom or the Railroad Day Award it got during its year. I know I've had some issues such as Kobayashi was really running out of ideas (though Emperor Zetto was fun to watch with how much of Large Ham he really is since I love HAM in any show) than a real Big Bad but I could still have a place for it in my heart after rewatching it at my own pace.

Kamen Rider Drive

While I was pessimistic (at first) due to how Sanjo handled Kyoryuger while I did appreciate Drive for how it'd turn out to be. It did have some issues such as how Takahito Oomori eventually caused some character decay issues to Kiriko but at least she was still useful in spite of it. I always wished that Shinosuke Tomari were a Kamen Rider x Robocop hybrid but it never happened. It had its crossover with Ninninger though personally -- I wish he had his crossover with the ToQGers. I still feel this is one of my favorite post-Decade Kamen Rider seasons until today!  

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So what are your thoughts on these shows?

Comments

  1. This anniversary is definitely a big part of me from being born in 1979, slightly discovering Tokusatsu in 1989 and also having a big change in my life during that year.
    Having a adventurous life and year in 1994 and having another life changing year in 1999.
    Incredible with a blink of a eye all these shows that where current and new are now a thing of the past.

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