Monday, May 24, 2010
Arguements commonly used against Dekaranger
A couple weeks ago, I was reading the Dekaranger discussion topic on the Japan Hero forum. I was surprised at how many people on that forum berated the show. To me, Dekaranger is my favorite Sentai series that I have seen so far (I've seen roughly 5 either partially or entirely). If the topic wasn't four years old I would have created my own account to put my own two cents into it. Right now, for whatever reason, the forum is offline atm. Here were some of the common arguements that were used against Dekaranger.
The most common arguement was against Ban. Many Japan Hero members found Ban to be "annoying." I understand that a lot of Sentai fans are not too fond of a fiery red ranger, but personally I found Hoji to be more annoying at the beginning of the series than Ban. Hoji in the first 4 episodes or so has kind of an arrogant, I'm better than anyone else attitude, but that changed after he screwed up on an assignment in episode 3. In my opinion, Ban's fiery, passion for justice, chaotic attitude is what gives Dekaranger its spice.
Another arguement that I encountered was that there was "no main villian." This is only partially true. The alienizers generally were not led by a lead villain and attacked on their own will. Agent Abrella was basically the main villain, although he did not lead them except on a few notable occasions (such as episode 44 and the final battle). Generally, Abrella was just an arms supplier to the alienizers. Personally, so what if Deka didn't have a lead villain? With the space police theme, it was necessary to not have a lead villain. Its more believable that in order to fight crime, criminals committ crime at their own will instead of taking orders from someone else. Power Rangers SPD tried the lead villain route with this theme (emperor Grumm), which really screwed up the purpose of the Dekaranger theme.
Another arguement was the amount of the English language that was used in Dekaranger. Conversational english was never used, but most of the characters had english catch-phrases, with Hoji having the most. My response is so what? Dekaranger isn't the only Super Sentai to have extensive use of english phrases, nor was it the first. Gao Yellow used as much english if not more than Hoji did. Also, english is used in virtually all of Japanese pop culture, rather its in anime, jdoramas, or even in their music. Kids even have to take six years of english in Japanese schools. With increasing American influence (which I will discuss next week), english is becoming more valuable in Japan and is making its way into Japanese pop culture.
The last arguement that is used is that Dekaranger is that "Dekaranger isn't a true Sentai show, and would be better off as an independent cop show." Thats the great thing about Super Sentai, that it has different themes every year instead of using the same boring theme. Hurricanger was a ninja themed show, Abaranger was dinosaur theme, Dekaranger was a space police theme, Magiranger was a magic theme, Boukenger had an adventure theme, and so on. Furthermore, having multiple colored rangers, giant robot machines that could combine into one, and monsters to me qualifies it as a Super Sentai program.
Reasons why I like Dekaranger
After that long explanation here are my reasons why I like Dekaranger and why you should watch Dekaranger.
1. The Girls- Dekaranger has by far the hottest (Jasmine), and I would also argue the cutest (Umeko) girls in the entire Sentai series. This is by far the best heroine combo in all of Super Sentai. Besides these two, Swan-San is a lovely technician, and Marigold (only seen in the movie) is also beautiful.
2. Doggie Kruger- Doggie Cruger is one of the most bad ass rangers (and commanders) in the Super Sentai franchise. You have to see for yourself. He's like Arnold Schwartzenegger on steroids. Oh wait, Arnold did take steroids :P
3. The Cast- The cast & character development in Dekaranger is top notch. Some of Sentai's most likable characters (Jasmine, Umeko, Tetsu, Doggie, Swan) are in this series. Shinkenger also has good character development.
4. Story Writing and Diversity- Dekaranger storylines and episodes vary greatly, from touching tear-jerking moments (such as Jasmine's past problems with her ESPER powers, and the death of Tetsu's parents), tough moments (particularly Hoji having to delete his best friend and later his girlfriend's brother), and even some outright hilarious moments (Tetsu's bug boyfriend in episode 45). Boukenger also had some good story writing.
5. The Music- The music in Dekaranger is also awesome. I own the soundtrack and can listen to it all day. Some of the character songs admittedly aren't that good (specifically the ones sung by the boys), but its a two disc set. The first disc is filled with great songs, and both Umeko and Jasmine have good character songs as well.