DVD Corner's blog

News, dvd and blu-ray reviews

Kamen Rider Kuuga: The Complete Series Blu-ray Review

‘Kamen Rider Kuuga’ gets a thumbs up.

It’s no secret that the Japanese Tokusatsu multi-media franchise ‘Kamen Rider’ is right up there with ‘Super Sentai’ (The Japanese Power Rangers) and ‘Ultraman’ in terms of popularity. Not only has it endured for over 50 years now, but it continues to thrive. Back in 2000, the fan favorite ‘Kamen Rider Kuuga’ kicked off the Heisei Era and now (for the first time in the U.S.) fans can own all 49 episodes of the series thanks to this new Blu-ray release from Shout! Factory. 

‘Kamen Rider Kuuga’ revolves around the kind hearted man of many talents (and interests) Yusuke Godai (played by the personable Joe Odagiri) whose life is forever changed after an archaeological excavation. The excavation unearths a special belt that transforms its wearer into Kuuga (a super powered hero), but it also unleashes the villainous and murderous Gurongi (led by N Daguva Zeba) that are terrorizing Japan. The Gurongi creatures are made up of different groups (Xu, La, Me and Go) and are also playing a deadly game known as Gegel (you’ll just have to see what that is). Only Kuuga can stand in their way to save the day.

Other storylines in the series involve Yusuke adjusting to powers and different forms (leveling up as it were), Kuuga’s vehicles and weapons, Yusuke helping out humanity, Police Inspector Kaoru Ichijo cracking down on Gurongi and working with Yusuke, Sakurako Sawatari (a friend of Yusuke’s and a translator), Dr. Tsubaki, Hikari Enokida (head of the science department with the police), murders, Yusuke’s sister Minori, Yusuke having a health crisis, and mysteries of the excavation site. 

If you’re a fan of Tokusatsu series or ‘Kamen Rider,’ ‘Kamen Rider Kuuga’ is pure heaven. Although it does adhere to a monster of the week formula complete with action-packed climactic battles against often animal themed foes (Bat, Rhino, Grasshopper, you name it), ‘Kuuga’ is a serialized sci-fi series with an ongoing story. Over the course of 49 episodes, the writers do an immense amount of world building by delving into not only the titular hero and his allies but the villains and their dastardly plot. It’s presented in a way that is very binge worthy by today’s standards.

Some viewers may scoff at the cheesy low-budget look and feel and the dated special effects (even for 2000), but the show is not for everyone. At the end of the day, this was a series designed for children (although it can appeal to anyone). You either buy into this weird world full of people in fantastical costumes or you don’t. It’s no different than seeing people in superhero outfits. It’s merely sci-fi fiction that transports you to another world. For those that are invested, you’ll certainly want to embark on this journey with Yusuke.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 1.78:1 1080p. How does it look? Although the early digital video quality has not aged well for most any show or film, this transfer does present it in the best possible quality.

Audio Track: Japanese DTS-HD MA Stereo.How does it sound? A very solid track: Note: Viewers have the option of playing subtitles with or without Grongi (AKA what the villains are saying).

No extras have been included.

September 20, 2022 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: