Haruo Nakajima, 1929-2017

20663700_674725719385595_4713927030550513171_n.pngHaruo Nakajima, the man inside the original Godzilla (and many other classic monsters like Mothra, RodanKing Kong, and various Ultraman baddies) passed away on Monday August 7th, 2017. He was one of the best and bravest performers in film history, bringing to life one of the most iconic and beloved characters of the last century.

Nakajima was a founding figure in the genre, having played Godzilla for the first twelve consecutive films.  Nakajima imbued rubber suit monsters with an impossible amount of emotion, personality, and humanity.  He didn’t just endure the hellish conditions inside the kaiju suits (more often than not at risk of drowning, asphyxiation, and/or burns from pyrotechnics), he thrived, using his expertise to coach his fellow suit actors and choreograph the creature brawls that have thrilled audiences all over the world.  He was The Man of a Thousand Monsters, and he’s directly responsible for some of the coolest shit to ever happen in cinema.

Fans from all over the world have stepped up and shared their favorite Nakajima stories, pictures, and tributes online, so I’ve collected some personal favorites here. Click through to check them out!

Continue reading

Advertisements

Ultraman Review Part 5: Episodes 11-13

tumblr_oiki9vLrt81vki3xpo8_500Let’s get Ultra, fools! I have no concept of how long it’s gonna take, but I’m determined to review every last episode of this show and after a couple months off I’m jazzed to dive back in.

If you haven’t checked out the previous installments or want a refresher, hit up Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4!

This month we get some of the (intentionally) funniest monster action I’ve ever seen, our creepiest antagonist since Baltan, and a fresh, funky formula shake-up! Pour yourself a nice tall glass of oil because shit’s gettin’ ULTRA in here!

Continue reading

Kaijuly Video Game Meltdown!

kaijuly17banner.png

Happy Kaijuly everybody!  If you’re wondering what the fuck Kaijuly is, wonder no longer! (or do, it’s a free country)

Kaijuly is one of those weird internet holidays like May the Fourth or Zelda Month, except you know, about kaiju instead of space aliens or forest-dwelling adventurers.

Obviously The Legend of Zelda (above left) is about eerie interplanetary beings, and Star Wars (above right) revolves around cute woodland dwellers.

From what I can tell, Kaijuly got its start over on Tumblr as an art challenge: create and share an original kaiju (or fan-art of an existing one) for every day in July! It’s been broadening every year since, including month-long discussion challenges (I’m doing one! Just posted for days 1-3!), and El Rey Network (the coolest channel almost no one gets) has run a “Kaijuly Roarth” Godzilla marathon for the last couple years!

G-Fest is in July too!  So yeah!  I’m ready to call Kaijuly “A Whole Thing”.  So much so that my Twitch channel, Super Apartment Friends, is going to celebrate by playing kaiju-themed video games all month!

saficon.png

Even if it kills me! Which it might!

Keep reading for the full (insane) list of games that are under consideration!

Continue reading

Ultraman Review Part 4 of ∞ Episodes 8-10

ultraman-logoMy in-depth review of the entire Ultraman series continues this month with some Ultra-tasty Ultra-selections! (If you haven’t already, check out Parts 1, 2, and 3!)

With this batch of episodes we get the introduction of three iconic Ultra monsters, a poignant visit from a VERY familiar face, and  Ultraman’s goriest kaiju kills yet! …Though they’re pretty tame compared to what will come later in the franchise! (big thanks to desro’saur 3300 for finding the clip!)

Grab your beta capsule, a pink ballon and hop into your monster-face shaped car because shit’s about to get ULTRA!

Continue reading

Ultraman Review Part 3 of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Episodes 6 & 7

0f87a18b64d420dd65b7eb366f22f7acHey look, more Ultraman! Welcome to part 3 of my on-going review series! February is a short slippery little month that kind of got away from me, so this time I’m only breaking down episodes 6 and 7. Click here for Part 1 (series intro and pilot episode review), click here for Part 2 (episodes 2-5), and click here to see a fat raccoon somersault down somebody’s hallway.

We’ve got a pair of rad adventures on the docket this month: a kaijuified diamond heist by the sea, and an ancient cult of Ultraman worshippers in an exotic faraway city! Both episodes push the show in exciting new directions, and as always, pack in some kickass, over-the-top monster-mashing mayhem!

Fire up the Corvair and grab your diamonds and your giant blue magic gems, because it’s time to make some jewelry save the world from killer kaiju! Two more times!

Continue reading

Ultraman Review Part 2 of ?¿? Episodes 2-5

ultraman_japanese_tv_series_title_cardMy Ultraman review series continues with episodes 2-5! If you haven’t already, be sure to read the intro section that goes over the first episode!  Now that we’ve laid the groundwork, we can dive into the outrageous adventures of Ultraman and his little orange buddies at the Science Patrol! In this batch of episodes, they tangle with a Creature from the Black Lagoon look-alike, a bloodthirsty flower, an electricity-slurping dino-freak… and one of Ultraman’s creepiest, most iconic villains!

Squeeze into your orange lycra, grab a couple million volts to munch on and fire up one of your many jets, it’s time to blast off with Ultraman and his Ultrafriends and Ultrafoes!

Continue reading

Step aside Superman! Move along Mega Man! Ultraman is!… ultra… here? (Part 1 of ???)

Ultra Man - American Version OpeningIt’s been a long time coming, gang! I’ve teased it the last few months, did a dry run (of sorts) with Redman, and even did some special scheduling and pre-planning to boost my chances of even pulling it off: this month, I’m punching myself in the wiener as hard as I can reviewing the original Ultraman series! All thirty-nine (Jesus Christ) half-hour episodes!

Or at least, that was the original plan!

The hectic holiday season and the sheer volume of content at hand means I bit off way more than I can chew here.  To give Ultraman his due, MONSTERS CONQUER THE WORLD is gonna do something a little different for the next couple months. To start, this post will provide a brief intro/background on the series and then take an in-depth look at the first episode.  In the coming weeks I’ll nibble away at the monumental first series in bite-size chunks until I’ve devoured every single episode of Ultraman!  (Too many food metaphors, sounds like you’re going to eat him.-Ed.)

Considering my time management skills, am I still biting off more than I can chew? Maybe! Is it ridiculously overdue and absolutely worth it? You bet your beta capsules, baby!

Alongside Batman and Star Trek, Ultraman forms a triumvirate of hugely influential science-fiction/fantasy television shows that exploded into homes in 1966. Eiji Tsuburaya, the special effects warlock that gave us Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra, and King Ghidorah (and therefore the Japanese monster boom of the 60s) birthed this bionic bad-ass and redefined the giant monster genre in the process. It’s a big ol’ slice of TV history… and a still-thriving multimedia/merchandising empire that rivals (and in some cases surpasses) Godzilla’s! Let’s find out what exactly is so Ultra about this man!

Continue reading