Get your mops, brooms, and towels ready, because Superhero Time is about to experience a huge mess that will require some proper cleaning later on. In case you have guessed right, I am going to share my thoughts on the movie that brings Kamen Rider and Super Sentai together.
And due to a special event in Japan, Wizard will be taking a break. However, you are still getting a good helping of Kamen Rider in today's segment.
Will we end up with a good mess, or will it leave a nasty spot in one's place? Find out as I team up with the proud cleaners of Go-Busters to clean up Superhero Wars.
The lonely toku rundown
Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters Episode 37
The first thing that came out of my head for this week's episode was that it felt a little creepy at first. But then I realized that it could also be seen as an innocent little crush, since most students go through this situation at some point in their life. It's a good thing that Go-Busters is a kids show; otherwise, things might have went differently.
I guess that breaking Escape's precious pets didn't affect her fighting style so much, since her Avatar abilities allow her to repair her weapons, which is a convenient attribute for one composed of data. Never did I expect to see Escape infect herself with the Metavirus, but at the same time, that thought went through my head when I first saw Enter created a Metaroid in the first episode. And based on Escape's transformation, there's a chance that Enter might be planning the same thing with using Messiah as a medium.
One thing that's making this new arc interesting is that Enter is still gaining something from the fallen Messiah Metaroids. And once all of them fall, we will probably see the true colors of Enter's plan, which kind of reminds me of Akumaro's plan during the final segments of Shinkenger. Personally, I am excited for when that day comes, which will add more points to Enter's character.
The toku spotlight
When I first found out about Superhero Wars, I knew that this was going to be a movie that was meant to fulfill the fanservice of any Kamen Rider and/or Super Sentai fan. In fact, I was hoping that both teams would combine their budget into one huge action packed spectacle that would show the finest heroes of both franchises doing what they do best. As for the final product, let's just say that my expectations weren't met.
Starting off with the main gimmick of the movie, we begin our story with Marvelous wiping out the the classic Kamen Riders, which would then acts as Decade's motive in wanting to wipe out every single Ranger in existence. From there, we have a massive manhunt between both franchises as a few of the characters are trying to figure out Marvelous's motive for wanting to kill every Rider. To add to the mystery, both sides are teaming up with the resurrected main villains from both Kamen Rider and Super Sentai.
You would think that Marvelous's and Decade's action would be one of the film's biggest flaws, but it turns out that it's the least thing that you have to worry about. Superhero War's main flaws lies in the characters, pacing, and plot holes that haunt each shot in the movie. For starters, Joe's action were a bit too irrational for his character, since he was literally the second in command of Marvelous's crew in Gokaiger. Even though his captain's actions cause a bit of confusion in his ideals, his method of taking it out on the characters from the Kamen Rider side was a bit uncalled for. Then we have Diend's actions, which played an unnecessary role in the movie's climax, which felt a tad immature.
Besides most of the cast acting out of character, Superhero Wars was filled with a few confusing transitions. For example: there were a few fight scenes between Gokai Red and Decade where the movie would forget the fight so that it can transition to a different scene. In a way, this action felt like the production team forgot to brush up on the basic principles of film making.
And don't get me started with the film's plot hole, which they happen to be very major. First off all, the movie never explained how any of the villains came back from the dead. While the movie probably intended for viewers to assume that it was due to the alternate world elements found in Kamen Rider Decade, it still doesn't defend how each villain was portrayed. Then there was a certain scene that involved seeking the aid of the Den-O cast, which resulted in bringing Akaranger from the past. However, the movie pulled out an impossible twist where Akaranger turned out to be Marvelous in disguise. Since Marvelous cannot time travel on his own, the only possible explanation is that he arrived in the past with the Timeranger's help. However, the movie failed to give us any hints that would lead towards this possibility.
Back to my issue with the villains, it felt that they were only there by appearance, since their actions felt equivalent to those of the grunts found in both franchises. None of the villains use their unique abilities that made them formidable foes in their shows, and there were two villains on the Sentai side that acted as one of the biggest contradictions in the movie. While I would like to talk about them, it would require me to mention some spoilers that are related to Gekiranger and Shinkenger. However, I will talk about the latter, since it's something that's revealed in the beginning of Shinkenger. Long story short, the villains in Shinkenger are vengeful water spirits that reside in the Sanzu River, and one of their weaknesses is that they can only remain in our world until their bodies run out of Sanzu River water. Though I will admit that I am digging a little too deep into this element, since the viewers that have not seen those shows won't care too much about those characters. But it still doesn't change the fact that it feels like a waste of a good villain cameo if you can't portray them properly. While 199 Hero and most of the Kamen Rider movies were a bit guilty of this, they at least had a proper way to justify their actions. For 199 Hero, I assumed that the Black Cross King put a restriction on the resurrected villain's abilities so that he can remain in control. And as for the Kamen Rider movies, the villains shown tend to be random grunts mimicking their form.
Dare I say it, but it also felt like the director did not do his research with the franchise, since Marvelous had access to the Ranger Keys, regardless of the way how Gokaiger ended. Other contradictions involved Kamen Rider OOO having the Purple Core Medals, along with the other Core Medals, which goes against OOO's ending. And at the root of it all, Decade's alternate world elements probably act as the scapegoat for all of these issues. If not, then they are all there for the sake of fanservice and nothing more.
Despite Superhero Wars having such horrendous flaws, I was somehow entertained with most of the content found in Superhero Wars. Being a sucker for shout outs and fun fight scenes, Superhero Wars pulled off a few with some of the combos done between the Riders and the Rangers. Since the budget was saved for the big final battle in the movie, they did a fantastic job with the Go-Buster Oh using the Super Rocket Switch and Drill Switch. And of course, the scenes with the Imagins were priceless, since those guys always seem to make me laugh. It was also neat to see them perform the Superhero Time combos during the all out battle at the end of the movie. However, that's where all of the praise stops, which is still not enough to save the movie from grave that it has made.
So is Superhero Wars the worst tokusatsu movie of all time? Absolutely not, since there are a few movies that fill in this slot (*cough Turbo: A Power Ranger Movie). If one plans to watch it, then it is best that you don't take the movie seriously. However, that's still not enough to cover up the sheer amount of issues that keep the film from honoring the tenth anniversary of Superhero Time. On the bright side, this movie seems to be a special, so you won't have to worry about it causing a permanent stain in the Kamen Rider and Super Sentai continuity.
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