'Ultraman - The Complete Series'
(Akiji Kobayashi, Susumu Kurobe, Masanari Nihei, et al / 6-Disc DVD / NR / (1972) 2019 / Mill Creek Entertainment)
Overview: 'Ultraman,' a giant alien from the Land of Light in Nebula M78, enters Earth's atmosphere in pursuit of an escaped space monster.
In the skies above Japan he accidentally crashes into a Jet VTOL piloted by Hayata, a member of the Science Special Search Party (SSSP), an international research and defense agency that protects the world from monsters and aliens of all shapes and sizes.
To save Hayata, Ultraman merges his life force with the dying human and vows to stay and fight for peace on Earth. Now, whenever the Patrol faces a threat too great for them to handle, Hayata transforms into Ultraman to save the day!
DVD Verdict: Created by Eiji Tsuburaya in the 60's and brought over to the states in the 70's' 'Ultraman' is a show that's like a PG-rated prehistoric version of 'The X Files' ... with Godzilla monsters! Oh, and a GIANT super hero who saves the day every episode, and all the craziness cranked to 11!
To be more precise, in the then not too distant future of the early 90's, an international police group called The Science Patrol investigates strange phenomena like aliens and cryptids.
One night two lights - one red the other blue - arrive on Earth, but the red light accidentally crashes into the jet of Science Patrolman Shin Hayata killing him.
The red light reveals that he is Ultraman an alien from the Land of Light, in Nebula M78, beyond the 40th Galaxy and the blue light is an evil space monster called Bemular.
Feeling regretful for Hayata's death, and unable to survive Earth's atmosphere for more than three minutes at a time Ultraman fuses his life with Hayata's, and together (along with Hyata's fellow Science Patrol members) defeat Bemular; and then go on to face more aliens, and monsters with Hayata becoming whenever all hope seems lost.
Ergo, 'Ultraman' is classic 60's and 70's era sci-fi goodness, my friends. Every episode is like a 30 minute Godzilla movie with paranormal stuff like aliens, The Loch Ness Monster and more being the explanation for the monster!
It's hard to pick just one monster or episode I like more than another, because the show has a lot of good ones; one way or another.
I mean, from the very first episode which sets up the show and gives us a cool monsters (and Bemular), to the very second with Ultraman's most iconic enemies (the Baltan aliens), there is nothing but classic richness here to be viewed, trust me.
Perhaps some of my favorites of the series are the episodes with Jirass, because it captures the show in a nutshell. With the Science Patrol and Ultraman fighting The Loch Ness Monster (who turns out to be Godzilla with a frill!), as well, as the episode with Red King (that's like a 30 minute version of The Lost World with Godzilla monsters!), the complexity behind each monster and its myth is breathtaking for the era.
And the characters are all cool with both Hayata himself and Ito (the comic relief science expert) stand outs, for sure. Plus there's always some fun to be had watching guys in rubber alien and monster suits beat each other up for three minutes every episode!
Of course, Ultraman himself has some cool powers, like his signature Specium Beam and his shredding Ultra Slicer!
All in all, 'Ultraman' is a great show that if you like 'Godzilla' movies, weird stuff shows like 'The X Files,' 'The Outer Limits,' and superhero movies, in general, you will definitely LOVE this sci-fi hem, believe me!
In closing, copies of this series have been so rare to find, let alone watch outside of Japan, but now that Mill Creek Entertainment have brought this wondrous box-set out (along with 'Ultra Q: The Complete Series),' well, my long lost inner '60s child has come back home and is very content; thank you, Mill Creek. Thank you. This is a Full Screen Presentation (1.33:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
Complete, original Japanese broadcast edits - fully remastered and restored in HD
Lossless DTS-HD Master Audio
28-page collectible booklet
Digital Redemption on movieSPREE!