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»KIKAIDA: A Viewer's Factoids
Author: August Ragone
"KIKAIDA: A Viewer's Factoids" appears with the full blessings and consent of JN Productions. I am grateful to be a part of this joint project on their fantastic KIKAIDA DVD series. For information on how to obtain your own copies, go to the official Generation Kikaida website [http://www.generationkikaida.com].
01: GRAY RHINO KING: HARBINGER OF EVIL
Original Japanese Title: "Terrifying Grey King Rhino Is A Messenger From Hell" (Kyofu-no Gurei Saikingu-wa Jigoku-no Shisha). Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: HIDEYUKI KITAMURA. Guest Stars: KO MISHIMA, SHIRO SUZUKI, IWAO DAN. Broadcast Date: 07/08/1972.
The dam location when Jiro first appears to confront Grey King Rhino was shot at Okouchi Dam in Okutama -- the very same location employed in the very first episode of MASKED RIDER (Kamen Raida, 1971-1973). Creative Producer Tohru Hirayama said that this was done as a "good luck" gesture in starting off KIKAIDA, since MASKED RIDER became such a hit for Toei TV Productions. (This was stated by Mr. Hirayama over dinner in Ochanomizu, Tokyo. September, 1990.)
This same dam (in reality a well-built miniature thereof) was spectacularly destroyed by the insectoid antagonist in the 1973 Toho Pictures production of GODZILLA VS. MEGALON (Gojira tai Megalo), directed by Jun Fukuda.
During Professor Gill's roll call of Dark Androids, two silhouettes are shown and named: "Scarlet Dog" (originally "Red Dog") and "Red Snake" -- based on the Medusa Sisters from Greek Myth. These android monsters never appeared in the series as introduced.
"Scarlet Dog" was converted into the more well-known and sympathetic Dark Destructoid, "Gold Wolf," while "Red Dog" became "Blue Dog" (later "Blues Kong"). The coining of "Gorudo Urufu" (Gold Wolf) seems to explain why "Goruden Batto" (Golden Bat) was changed to "Ogon Batto" (Golden Bat) -- between the time Episode #1 and Episode #15 were shot (in which the winged android finally appears) -- the use of the English word "gold" seemed redundant.
The Medusa-like female Destructoid, seen in silhouette, was originally conceived as "Purple Snake" and renamed "Silver Snake," before becoming "Red Snake." This Dark automaton was then redesigned into a lumbering, bulky and less graceful monstrosity, scheduled to appear as the-android-of-the-week for Episode #10 (but then replaced by "Scorpion Brown"). This Destructoid ended up becoming "Blue Electric Eel" who eventually appeared in Episode #31.
One of the more interesting Dark Destructoids to not make the final cut into the series was "Pink Elephant" (Pinku Erufuanto). That's right, "Pink Elephant" -- seriously, I'm not kidding.
According to the original Production Notes, Grey King Rhino (Gurei Saiking), the featured Dark Destructoid of this episode, was originally planned as "Grey Saiborg" -- a play on the Japanese word "sai" (rhinoceros) and the English word "cyborg" (saiboggu).
Making of Toei Heroes Part 2: The World of Radical Heroes (Kodansha, 1987), explains more than one suit actor used to bring Kikaida to life. Trampoline and acrobatic stunts were split between Osamu Kaneda and Kenji Takahashi of Sonny Chiba's Japan Action Club, while Toshiaki Kikuchi, of the Mishima Kenjikai (Mishima Sword Action Club), served as the primary Kikaida suit actor.
Likewise, all of Jiro's trampoline and acrobatic stunts were masterfully enacted by Ban's stunt-doubles -- Kaneda and Takahashi. As all of these productions were team efforts in those days, Takahashi and Kaneda were also called upon to perform the acrobatic and trampoline stunts for some of the Dark Destructoids, while all other scenes were performed by members of the Mishima Kenjikai. Grey King Rhino was performed by Mishima's Kou Hayami.
One of the founding members of JAC, Osamu Kaneda later became a featured action choreographer/director for Toei's Sentai (Task Force) and Metal Hero series during the 1980s, and is still working for the organization today -- now know as Japan Action Enterprises.
Kenji Takahashi would later change his stage name to "Kenji Oba" and become a leading actor in tokusatsu series, such as "Battle Kenya" in BATTLE FEVER J (Batoru Fuibaa Jie, 1979-1980) and "Denzi Blue" in ELECTRIC TASK FORCE: DENZIMAN (Denshi Sentai Denjiman, 1980-1981). His most famous role would be that of "Ichijoji Retsu," the secret identity of SPACE SHERIFF GAVAN (Uchu Keiji Gaban, 1982-1983), the first of the Metal Hero series. To this day, Oba is a popular star in France and Brazil, because of GAVAN.
Ko Mishima (05/20/1927), a former Toho character actor, appears as "Aono," the young dam engineer who is saved by Jiro. Mishima played a JSDF Naval Officer, who delivers the order that the ship carrying Kong cannot dock in Japan, in Ishiro Honda's 1962 film, KING KONG VS. GODZILLA (Kingukongu tai Gojira). Mishima also played gangster "Kishi" in THE H-MAN (Bijo to Ekitai Ningen, 1958), Detective Fujita in THE HUMAN VAPOR (Gasu Ningen Dai'ichigo, 1960) and appeared in GORATH (Yosei Gorasu, 1962). For Toei Tokusatsu series, Mishima appears as "Dr. Odaguro" in Episode #58 of MASKED RIDER (1971-1973), as "Professor Kankawa" in Episode #33 of MASKED RIDER V3 (1973-1974), as "Professor Shoda" in Episode #1 of INAZUMAN (1973-1974), and as "Professor Kawakami" in Episodes #15 & #16 of MASKED RIDER X (1974).
The hapless truck driver seen at the top of the episode was played by Iwao Dan (06/22/1934), a Toei character actor who enjoyed a long career and appeared in such films as THE EXECUTIONER (Chugeki! Jigoku-Ken, 1975) with Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba. His other notable Toei Tokusatsu roles include "Golem" in Episodes #33 & #34 of TRANSFORMING NINJA ARASHI (Henshin Ninja Arashi, 1972-1973), as "George Kamamoto" in Episode #14 of MASKED RIDER V3, and made appearances in Episode #11 of MASKED RIDER STRONGER (1975), Episode #2 (as a prisoner) & #11 in SKY RIDER (1979-1980), and Episode #19 of NEBULA MASK: MACHINEMAN (Seiun Kamen Mashinman, 1984-1985) as a bank robber.
If watched carefully, one might notice that the primary vinyl action suit for Kikaida, made by Kaimai Productions, is already showing extreme signs of stress and tearing (where the sleeves meet the torso), by the end of the shooting of Episode #1. The suit was repaired for Episode #2, and you can see that both shoulders are red. This was further repaired and corrected for use in Episode #3.
02: GREEN MANTIS: BIZARRE KILLING MACHINE
Original Japanese Title: "Mysterious Green Mantis Is A Murderous Felon" (Kaiki Guriin Mantisu-wa Satsujin'ki). Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 07/15/1972.
Dr. Ishigami, who is murdered by Green Mantis (disguised as Dr. Komyoji), was played by character actor Masahiko Arima. This veteran actor was also featured as a guest star in a number of superhero series including "Professor Tomoto" in Episodes #48 & #49 of P-Productions' SPECTREMAN (Supekutoruman, 1971-1972), "Dr. Okajima" in Episode #15 of Toei's MASKED RIDER V3 (1973-1974), the old bamboo cutter in Episode #32 of Tsuburaya Production's ULTRAMAN LEO (Urutoraman Reo, 1974-1975), and "Dr. Uragami" in Episode #9 & #10 of P-Productions' DENJIN ZABOGA (1974-1975).
Because of the damage that occurred very quickly to Kikaida's primary vinyl action suit, this episode is the first time the formfitting cloth costume for Kikaida was employed for stunt scenes. The repaired standard vinyl Action, and detailed Close-up suits, were used for establishing shots and dialogue scenes.
In this episode, the Androidmen begin sporting black spray-painted Converse Chuck Taylor high-top Basketball shoes (to cover up the white rubber toes and soles) replacing the lace-up wrestling boots sported in the first episode.
Likewise, eagle-eyed viewers can spot Green Mantis sporting similar Chuck Taylors in many scenes -- although in some shots (and publicity photos) the Dark Destructoid is seen wearing monster-style feet. But these, themselves, were built up upon Van's Topsiders -- Hang Ten, Mantis!
Green Mantis was played by the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami. Green Mantis, according to the original Production Notes, was originally planned as "Green Antis."
03: ORANGE ANT: CHALLENGE TO THE DEATH
Original Japanese Title: "Deadly Challenge Of The Accursed Orange Ant"(Noroi Orenji Anto-no Shi-no Chossen). Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: HIDEYUKI KIMURA. Broadcast Date: 07/29/1972.
Appearing as the lighthouse keeper, "Michio," at the top of the episode, is the late Akira Yamaguchi, who went on to play "Yuki Joji/Riderman" in Episodes #43 through #51 of MASKED RIDER V3 (1973-1974) and "Yutaka Daimon," the main protagonist in P-Productions' DENJIN ZABOGA (1974-1975). Yamaguchi's genre credits also include "Nuigetsu" in Kokusai Hoei's NINJA SQUAD: MOONLIGHT (Ninja Butai Gekko, 1964-66), "Takao Nisshizumi" the Leader of the Special Forces Rangers in Totsu Agency/Japan Special Effects Inc.'s PRINCE MONSTER (Kaiju Oji, 1967-1968), "Susumu Imai" in FIGHT! MIGHTY JACK (Tatakae! Maitei Jakku, 1968-1969) and "Agent Aoki" in Episode #30 of ULTRA SEVEN (Urutora Sebun, 1967-1968); both produced by Tsuburaya Productions. He also played the evil "Chief Kidd" in Toei's GIANT IRONMAN 17 (Daitetsujin Wansebun, 1977-1978).
The fact that Jiro rejects perfecting his conscience circuit is important: with one, there would probably be no series. Mitsuko says that Jiro ("second son") was named in memory of a deceased older brother, Taro. No explanation is made when Ichiro (Kikaida-01) makes his debut.
Unbilled child actor Yoshihide Goto appears for the first time in KIKAIDA as "Yota," the little boy fleeing from Orange Ant. He made his first Tokusatsu appearance as "Kenji Miyashita" in Episode #4 and "Hiroshi Okano" in Episode #42 of MASKED RIDER (1971-1973). Goto -- who also would appear as another character in Episode #9 -- would go on to portray Dr. Gill's son "Akira" in KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974).
When little Yota is reunited with his mother at the conclusion of the episode, the tall man to the right of the screen (with the yellow shirt, white cap and aviator glasses), is none other than Kazuo Mishima, the action choreographer for the show. To his right, the tall young man (with a blue shirt and cap), is Toshiaki Kikuchi, the suit actor for Kikaida. Eagle-eyed viewers can spot Kikuchi earlier in the episode, when Orange Ant rousts his hostages out of the bowling alley. Incidentally, the mother of child star Masahiro Kamiya (Masaru Komyoji), appears in the crowd scenes for the first time.
In the final battle, Kikaida fights with a number of Androidmen on a wooden bridge, which also was featured in fight scenes in several Tokusatsu series, as well as Toei's martial arts films YAKUZA WOLF (Okami Yakuza, 1972) starring Sonny Chiba and SISTER STREETFIGHTER (Onna Hissatsu-Ken, 1975) starring Etsuko Shiomi, who made her television debut as Mari/Binjinda in KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974).
The Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami was the one shaking his behind and sweating under the foam rubber as the ubiquitous Orange Ant.
04: BLUE BUFFALO: FIENDISH DEATH TRAP
Original Japanese Title: "The Devilish Blue Buffalo Sets A Trap" (Akuma-no Burubafaro-ga Wana-o Haru). Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: HIDEYUKI KIMURA. Broadcast Date: 08/05/1972.
Hiroko Saito the young actress who guest stars as "Hikari Togawa" and appears as "Kaoru" in Episode #29. She also was featured in Episode #14 of KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974) as "Mayumi Awaji." Saito also played regular characters on Toei's SUPERHUMAN BAROM-1 (Chojin Baromu Wan, 1972), as "Kume Sugazaki," and "Yurika" on Tsuburaya Productions' THE APE COPRS (Saru-no Gundan, 1974-1975). She also had guest turns in MASKED RIDER (1971-1972) Episode #22 (as "Miyuki") & #55 (as "Masako"), and in Episode #4 of MASKED RIDER X (1974) as "Kibako Oba." The young actress can also be spotted in the theatrical featurettes MASKED RIDER VS. SHOCKER (Kamen Raida tai Shokka, 1972) and INAZUMAN: THE 3-D MOVIE (Tobedasu Eiga Inazuman, 1973).
The hapless fisherman who dies at the hands of Blue Buffalo at the top of the episode was played by series action choreographer Kazuo Mishima.
Some of the locations in this episode are the same as the previous, including a resort hotel and the Izu Cactus Gardens. The latter appeared in many other series, including Tsuburaya Productions' ULTRAMAN (Urutoraman, 1966-1967) and MASKED RIDER (1971-1973).
Yukiko Togawa meets with foreign bidders for Blue Buffalo in the lobby of the Dankoen Hotel, across from which was the Dankoen Bowling Lanes, where Orange Ant struck the episode before -- the Dark didn't go far, did they? This was actually part of the location tie-up between Toei and the town of Ito in Shizuoka Prefecture.
The character of Yukiko Togawa was originally written in the preliminary teleplay as a man -- Shintaro Togawa.
When the Androidmen board the Komyoji boat, they are wearing snorkels and masks -- why? Since they are automatons, they don't breathe! The bombs planted on the boat by the Dark henchmen are aerosol cans painted black -- necessity is the mother of invention.
When Jiro drove into the water to save Mitsuko and Masaru from the bombs, actor Daisuke Ban hit in head on a rock below the surface. His head had to be bandaged, and so he performed the rest of the episode with Jiro's helmet firmly on his head to hide them.
Another of Hanpei's offices appears in this episode -- it seems to change locations and sets several times during the early part of the series. How did the poor bugger afford to rent that many offices? Note the ninja equipment on his walls: shurikens and ropes.
Before the script for this episode was written, Blue Buffalo was originally slated to appear as "Red Buffalo" -- according to the original Production Notes. Tearing up the scenery as Blue Buffalo was the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami.
05: YELLOW JAGUAR: CLAWS OF EVIL
Original Japanese Title: "The Evil Claws Of Yellow Jaguar Reach Out" (Ierojaga-no Aku-no Te-ga Semaru). Teleplay: HIDEYOSHI NAGASAKA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 08/12/1972.
The set for Hanpei Hattori's Investigation Agency, in this episode, was shot on location at the offices of Funebashi Studio in the Setagaya Ward of Tokyo (this information came from discussions with Tohru Hirayama).
Not only did Hanpei have different offices in various episodes, but also autos as well: Hanpei's favorite car, a Subaru 350 was changed, starting with this episode. >From Episodes #2 through #4, a silver model was employed (license number "Okutama Ki: 22-81"), but from Episode #5 onwards, was substituted with a green Subaru 350 (license number "12-27"). To coerce the car into running, Hanpei employs his infamous "Ninja Licking Technique" -- twice -- a ninjutsu trick some fans wish he kept to himself.
When the young boy "Gen Sakuma" (played by Yutaro Komatsu), wearing the "Grim Reaper Belt," acts out and plays Kikaida -- the only time in the series where a character mimics our hero. Komatsu was also featured as "Tsutomu Nishizaki" in Episodes #5 & #6 of MASKED RIDER V3 (1973-1974), INAZUMAN (1973-1974), "Susumu" in Episode #2 of MASKED RIDER X (1974). Komatsu also appeared in the theatrical feature, THE FIVE RIDERS VS. KING DARK (Gonin Raida tai Kingudakku, 1974).
The Grim Reaper Belt was modified by the prop masters from a Popy toy belt from the Toei series TRANSFORMING NINJA ARASHI (1972-1973), as one can see Arashi's crossed-feathers crest appearing on either side of the centerpiece of the belt.
The human guise of Dark Destructoid "Yellow Jaguar" was played by Takanobu Hozumi (07/30/1931), a Toei character actor who appeared in the feature films THE SNOW COUNTRY (Yukiguni, 1965), THE EAST CHINA SEA (Higashi Shinakai, 1968), THE BLOOD OF ANOTHER (Ore-no Chi-wa Tannin-no Chi, 1974), THE DEMON (Kichiku, 1978) and was a voice actor in the animated feature HARMAGEDDON (Genma Taisen, 1982). More recently, Hozumi was featured as "Hiroshi Nakamura" in MR. BASEBALL (1992). He played "Takuya Ito" in Episode #76 of MASKED RIDER (1971-1973).
Yellow Jaguar was originally planned as "Scarlet Jaguar," according to the original rough sketch reprinted on page 26 of "Kikaida Daizen" (The Kikaida Chronicles. Iwasa, Yuichi. Futabasha Publishing, April 5, 2002). The villanous Yellow Jaguar was essayed by the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami.
06: BLACK HORSE: SHOWDOWN AT THE DARK EXECUTION GROUND
Original Japanese Title: "Black Horse Awaits In The Execution Grounds" (Burakku Hossu-ga Shiteijo-demasu) Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 08/19/1972.
The episode marks the first employment of the series format proposed in the original story plan, under the title "Android Redblue" (Jinzoningen Reddoburu): Komyoji constantly being persued in each episode by the minions of the Dark, with his children -- and Jiro -- one step behind him (according to the original Production Notes).
As in Episode #4, Hanpei performs another Iga Ninja technique, which was then increasingly played down for much of the series. Hanpei's Investigation Offices changes yet again -- this time, his residence, presumably where he hung his hat, in a suburban Tokyo apartment building (sorry, I don't know what suburban ward of Tokyo this building was located in).
The bulk of the climatic action was shot at an actual horse ranch, while the race track scenes were photographed at the Ohi Racing Track, an actual horse track in Tokyo. At the time of filming this episode, the track was closed for renovation into a venue for auto racing. Information taken from "Transforming Hero Compendium," page 163 (Kodansha Publishing. November 30, 1995).
Viewer's should notice that Black Horse does not explode when hit with Kikaida's Denji End (Electro-End) -- it seems as though the Denji End helps to cause Black Horse's Electo-Magnetic power to backfire, disintegrating him. The sadistic Dark Destructoid was played by the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami, and in a few brief shots at the race track by Hanpei Hattori actor Shun Ueda!
The Dark Tour Bus employed at the beginning of the episode does not sport the usual Dark license plate number "Shinagawa 5: He 99-99," seen in many episodes, but rather a real bus license number, "Ka 86." The same is true for the Dark Sedan seen in this episode, pursuing Dr. Komyoji, which has the non-ficticious license plate number "[Oku]tama 55: 90-06." The there's the license plate of the Dark Dump Truck that tries to run down Jiro, "[obscured] Sa 51-31." But, if you think that's useless...
The disoriented Dr. Komyoji remembers a phone number and dials it -- it is his home, but he does not recognize the voices of his children or Jiro. The first two digits in the Komyoji Residence telephone number are "4" and "8" -- but, we don't get the full phone number to make crank calls next time you are in Tokyo. (I told you that it was useless information!)
This is one of the few times we get to see the Komyoji Residence in the series, since the main characters were moving all around Japan in search of the missing scientist. This was shot in a real home, while later episodes used threadbare sets on the Toei Oizumi Studios soundstages.
In a brief passage of dialogue, Professor Gill mentions auctioning off another one his androids -- Black Horse -- to a foreign interest. This was the last time such a thing occurs in the series; but it begs the question: since both Blue Buffalo and Black Horse were destroyed by Kikaida, did Professor Gill give the money back to his empty-handed clients? Somebody call the Better Business Bureau...
07: BULLS KONG: MALEVOLENT MONSTER MAYHEM
Original Japanese Title: "Monstrous Blues Kong Goes On A Rampage" (Kaibutsu Burusukongu-ga Oabare). Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: HIDETOSHI KITAMURA. Broadcast Date: 08/26/1972.
The first victim of Blues Kong is "Mitsue Inaba," played by Fumiko Okamura. Okumura is the very same actress who later played the human form of Shadow's "Bakeneko Robot" (Cat Monster) in Episode #12 of KIKAIDA-01. In the priliminary teleplay, the character was named "Kaoru."
The scenes of the widower "Tetsuo Inaba" and his son, "Shiro," attempting to make the public aware of the threat of the Dark Demolition Corps, was shot at the Hachiko meeting place in front of Shibuya Station in the Shibuya Ward. This was one of the few times in the series shot on the streets of Tokyo.
The young Shiro Inaba was played by Osamu Sukuta, a child actor who grew up to play a superhero of his own in Toei's NEBULA MASK: MACHINEMAN (1984-1985).
There has been much debate as to the origin of the character design of Blues Kong -- while named after a great ape, he possesses a spiked dog collar and indeed looks more like a Bulldog than a primate, even resembling a cartoonish Bulldog in some respects.
In the planning stages, this Dark Android was indeed conceived as "Red Dog" (announced in the first episode as "Scarlet Dog") and then "Blue Dog." Confusion arises in the Japanese rendering of "blue" ("buru"), is also the same as "Bull," further underlining his canine origins. This is revealed in the Production Notes and from the original design sheets at Ishimori Productions.
In the filmed version, the name became "Burusu Kongu," the first part rendered in English as "Blues," to differentiate this character from "Blue Buffalo." The name and character change was made in the first round of scripting, while the original design was kept, adding further to the confusion.
The violent Blues Kong was played by the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami, who was the suit actor who dominated the early episodes of KIKAIDA as the main Dark Destructoids of the week. His perfromances were supported by the other members of the Mishima Kenjikai, as well as trampoline and acrobatic stunts provided by Osamu Kaneda and Kenji Takahashi (nee Kenji Oba) of the Japan Action Club.
When Mitsuko attempts to repair Kikaida's damaged shoulder in a Dark repair station, there are two well-built electronic command desks, which were rented from Toho Studios. The silver curved desk was originally designed and built for the alien command room set in "Godzilla Tower," featured in the 1972 film GODZILLA VS. GIGAN (Chikyu Kogeki Meirei Gojira tai Gaigan). Some electronic equipment from SON OF GODZILLA (Kaijuto-no Kessen Gojira-no Musuko, 1967) can also be spotted. These props can also be spotted in several other episodes of KIKAIDA.
If you look closely, switch that Hanpei pulls to disrupt the Dark Repair Station, allowing Jiro to transform into Kikaida, was actually taken from the lever controls for a passenger plane.
In this episode, the Androidmen switch from their "Dark! Dark!" chant to a reverb-enhanced "Gill! Gill!." During their first battle, Blues Kong is first Double Chopped by our hero in the form of Jiro -- not as Kikaida.
08: CARMINE SPIDER: MENACING BLOOD-SUCKING LAUGHTER
Original Japanese Title: "Carmine Spider Laughs Weirdly" (Kaamain Supaidaa-ga Fujimi-ni Warau). Teleplay: HIDEYOSHI NAGASAKA. Director: HIDETOSHI KITAMURA. Broadcast Date: 09/02/1972.
While all of the characters are constantly calling Hanpei Hattori, "Hanpen" (pounded fish cake) for comic effect, finally we have Jiro now slipping and getting caught up in the act, too -- another human trait of the Conscience Circuit?
"Akiko Yukimura," the young teacher of the kindergarten school was played by Ritsuko Fujiyama (born 03/15/1949), an actress from the Japan Action Club, who specialized in villains in several superhero series. Among these roles, she played "Miss Borg" in P-Productions' DENJIN ZABOGA (1974-1975), "Olga" in Toho's RAINBOWMAN: WARRIOR OF PIETY (Ai-no Senshi Reiboman, 1972-1973), "Amazoness" in SPIDER-MAN (Supaidaman, 1977-1978) and "Kunnoi" in MESSAGE FROM SPACE: THE GALACTIC BATTLE (Uchukara-no Messeji Ginga Taisen, 1978-1979), and "General Zenobia" in SCIENCE TASK FORCE: DYNAMAN (Kagaku Sentai Dainaman, 1983-1984), all three from Toei. She also made notable appearances in Episode #63 of MASKED RIDER (1971-1973) as "Sanae Hirono," Episode #14 of JAKQ: BLITZKREIG SQUAD (Jakka Dengeki-tai, 1977) as "Maya" (the human guise of "Devil Wolf"), and Episodes #36 & #37 of SKY RIDER (1979-1980) as "The Golden-Haired Woman."
On the wall of the kindergarten office there is a black and white portrait of a young boy. It is a head shot of child actor Hideki Kawaguchi, who costarred in Tsuburaya Productions' RETURN OF ULTRAMAN (Kaettekita Urutoraman, 1971-1972) as "Jiro Sakata," and later in Toei's MASKED RIDER V3 (1973-1974) as "Shigeru Tama." Kawaguchi also appeared in other genre series, such as the first episode of P-Productions' SPECTREMAN (1971-1972).
Madoka Tamura, who plays "Yuka/Doctor X," also appears in Episode #44 of KIKAIDA-01. This episode's Dark Destructoid, the creepy Carmine Spider, is played once again by the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami.
09: RED CONDOR: SCREECH OF DEATH
Original Japanese Title: "Death Rattle! Monstrous Bird Red Condor" (Danmatsuma! Youcho Reddo Kondoru). Teleplay: HIDEYOSHI NAGASAKA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 09/09/1972.
The hapless boy, "Kyuichi," was played by child actor Yoshihide Goto. Goto first appeared as "Yota" in Episode #3. The young thespian was later chosen to play Professor Gill's son, "Akira," in KIKAIDA-01.
Without any fanfare or explanation, Jiro's Sidemachine motorcycle (not Kikaida's) was changed to another model, with a completely different sidecar, starting with this episode.
The vile Red Condor was performed by Yukio Mihashi of the Mishima Kenjikai, who took over for Kou Hayami, as the main Dark Destructoid suit actor for this rotation in the series.
10: SCORPION BROWN: THE ULTIMATE WEAPON
Original Japanese Title: "Brown Scorpion Insane To Explode Humans" (Sasori Buraun Ningen-Bakudan-ni Kuru). Teleplay: KUNIAKI OSHIKAWA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 09/16/1972.
"Dr. Nakabori" is played by the late Toho character actor Ren Yamamoto, who is best remembered as Masaji, the doomed Odo Island fisherman from the original GODZILLA (Gojira, 1954). He also appeared in Episode #2 of Toei's SECRET TASK FORCE: GORANGER (Himitsu Sentai Gorenja, 1975-1977) as "Professor Koto." Yamamoto has appeared in numerous fantasy films and television series, most notably in Episodes #11 & #30 of ULTRAMAN, Episode #10 of ULTRA SEVEN (1967-1968) and Episode #1 of FIREMAN (Fuaiaman, 1973) -- all produced by Tsuburaya Productions.
Kaoru Endo, who plays Dr. Nakabori's daughter "Kazuko," also appears in Episodes #31 and #32, as the little girl terrorized by Blue Electric Eel.
The unusual building used for the Nakabori Energy Research Institute was known as the "100 Eyed Building," located in the Kinuta District of Setagaya Ward, Tokyo. This standout construct can also be seen in episodes of P-Productions' THE SPACE GIANTS (Maguma Taishi, 1966-1967), Tsuburaya Productions' ULTRA SEVEN (1967-1968), Senkosha's SILVER MASK (Shibaru Kamen, 1971-1972), P-Productions' DENJIN ZABOGA (1974-1975), and many others.
In the Dark Interrogation Room in which Dr. Nakabori is kept, the same electronic command desk, which was used as part of the set for the Dark Repair Station, is used again. It was originally a prop rented from Toho Studios and built for the 1972 film GODZILLA VS. GIGAN, first seen in Episode #7.
Originally, Brown Scorpion was planned to be named "White Scorpion" (Sasori Howaitto), according to the first episode and the original Produciton Notes booklet (courtesy of Tohru Hirayama). The sinister Brown Scorpion was essayed by the Mishima Kenjikai's Yukio Mihashi.
The end battle scenes were filmed on location in Okutama, near the first location at Okouchi Dam for the first episodes of both MASKED RIDER (1971-1973) and KIKAIDA.
When Brown Scorpion explodes at the hands of Kikaida's Denji End, his mechanical parts are not seen falling to the ground as with the demise of earlier Dark Destructoids.
Also in this episode, we see the one of the rare "accessories" of Kikaida's superbike, the Sidemachine: Roman Chariot-like tire slashers. This was inspired by one of the gadgets on James Bond's Aston-Martin DB5 from the classic film GOLDFINGER (1964), which was a huge hit in Japan.
11: GOLD WOLF: TORMENTED HOWLS FROM HELL
Original Japanese Title: "Gold Wolf Howls To Hell" (Gorudo Urufu-wa Jigoku-ni Hoeru). Teleplay: SHUKEI NAGASAKA. Director: HIDETOSHI KITAMURA. Broadcast Date: 09/23/1972.
The tragic humanoid form of Gold Wolf was played by Toru Sakaguchi (acting under the stage names "Yusaburo Sakaguchi" and "Tetsuro Sakaguchi"), who was the star of his own superhero-type show for Toei, the extremely popular RED SHADOW: THE MASKED NINJA (Kamen-no Ninja Akakage, 1967-1968). He also made notable guest appearances as a regular character in Ishimori/Toei's teleseries MESSAGE FROM SPACE: GALATIC BATTLE (1978-1979), featuring future superstar Hiroyuki Sanada. Mr. Sakaguchi passed away on July 13, 2003.
Actress Miki Kawase playing the disguised Androidwoman (who tries to trick Dr. Komyoji into believing that she is his daughter), also appears in Episode #38 of KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974). Hers was one of the "unofficial" female-type Androidman (disguised themselves as women) to appear in KIKAIDA, the others can be seen in Episodes #5 and #9.
Kikaida's almighty "Sidemachine" supercycle, was originally named the "Red Machine," according to the rough sketches reprinted on page 26 of "The Kikaida Chronicles" (Iwasa, Yuichi. Futabasha Publishing. April 5, 2002).
The exciting motorcycle stunts, as both Jiro and Kikaida, were performed by Kenzo Muromachi, the founder and leader of the professional motorcycle team, Muromachi Racing. It was his contributions to the series which added considerable "oomph" to KIKAIDA's action scenes.
Members of Sonny Chiba's Japan Action Club and Kazuo Mishima's Mishima Kenjikai, such as Toshiaki Kikuchi and Chiyota Watanabe were employed to bring the Dark Destructoids and Androidmen to life. Even fight choreographer Kazuo Mishima would don an Androidman get-up for certain scenes that required "A Few Bad Androids."
But, the suffocating men-behind-the-rubber Dark Destructoid costumes included the self-sacrificing Yukio Mihashi and Kou Hayami (Hayami plays the tragic Gold Wolf in this episode). As mentioned in earlier Factoids, the evil androids' trampoline stunts were executed by Kenji Takahashi (nee Kenji Oba) and Osamu Kaneda of JAC (today known as "Japan Action Enterprises").
The interior set of the Tadokoro residence, is the same set, redressed, as used for the Sakuma family room seen in Episode #5 and the Inaba family room in Episode #7. This standing set would subsequently pop-up, redressed each time, in other episodes of KIKAIDA -- including the Museum Director's office in the very next episode!
The climatic battle for this exciting episode was shot on location around the Kasumigaoka National Stadium built in 1958, at the former site of the Meiji Jingu Gaien Athletic Stadium. The venue hosted the Third Asian Games the same year, the 18th Olympic Games in 1964, the 10th Universiade in 1967, and the 2002 World Cup. Located in the lower Shinjuku Ward of Tokyo (near Shinanomachi), the stadium was also used as a major location for Episode #19 of Tsuburaya Productions' ULTRAMAN (1966-1967), Episode #9 of GIANT ROBO (1967-1968) and featured in the closing titles of Toei's GOOD LUCK! ROBOCON (1974-1977).
12: SILVER CAT: RUTHLESS SORCERESS
Original Japanese Title: "Cruel Witch: Silver Cat" (Zankoku Majo Shirubaa Katto). Teleplay: SHOICHI SHIMAZU. Director: HIDETOSHI KITAMURA. Broadcast Date: 09/30/1972.
Takiko Mizukami who plays the primary human guise of Silver Cat, also played another monster in human's clothing. She appeared as the seductive alien "Godora," who gets Dan Moroboshi to look unwittingly under the hood of her car, in Episode #4 of Tsuburaya Productions' ULTRA SEVEN (1967-1968). She also appears in MASKED RIDER (1971-1973) as "Chikako Amemiya" (Episode #5) and as "Monmae" (Episode #34).
The actor playing "Curator Hitosubashi" of the Sakuragaoka Art Museum is Ichiro Shimizu. Tokusatsu fans might recognize him as space botanist "Dr. Yasui" in Episodes #3 & #17 of Toei's GIANT ROBOT (Jianto Robo, 1968-1969) -- where he shared scenes with Professor Gill actor Mitsuo Ando (as "Doktor Over" aka "Doctor Botanus") -- better known to American fans as "Johnny Sokko and His Flying Robot." Of course, KIKAIDA fans will remember that Shimizu also appeared in the KIKAIDA: THE 3-D MOVIE (Tobedasu Jinzoningen Kikaida) as the father of the young boy, "Hiroshi Aoki."
Curator Hitosubashi's daughter "Yoko," who becomes "possessed" by Silver Cat, was played by Etsuko Matsuo (the character was supposed to be the only human form for Silver Cat in the priliminary teleplay). Matsuo also appeared in Episode #26 of MASKED RIDER. Meanwhile, sweating under Silver Cat's foam rubber hide was the Mishima Kenjikai's Kou Hayami.
The exotic-looking Sakuragaoka Art Museum, where the "Treasure of Munga" was kept, is actually The Kyutama Seiseki Memorial Hall in Sakuragaoka, on the outskirts of Tokyo. This well-employed location can be seen in a number of superhero television shows and fantasy movies, including many of the entries of the MASKED RIDER series, Toho's RAINBOWMAN: THE WARRIOR OF PIETY (1972-1973), P-Productions' DENJIN ZABOGA (1974-1975) and many others. Interestingly, this is the same location as Ishimori's residence in suburban Tokyo.
Creative Producer Tohru Hirayama -- the genius behind Toei's superhero and fantasy teleseries -- first spotted the Kyutama Seiseki Memorial Hall on a Japanese "Dr. Pepper" television commercial in the late 1960s. To Producer Hirayama, it looked like a baroque European building out of the Meiji Era, and first utilized the location in the original MASKED RIDER series. After MASKED RIDER, the Memorial Hall became one of the most oft-used locations seen on Japanese television ("All Monster/Mutants," pages 478-479. Keibunsha Publishing, November 30, 1990).
Speaking of locations, the exterior of the cave, where Jiro hides Mitsuko and Masaru with the Treasure of Munga, is another familiar location for Japanese superhero fans. Akin to southern California's Bronson Canyon and Caverns, this cave -- Yoshimi Hyakketsu in Yoshimi, Saitama Prefecture -- has been employed in numerous Chambara and Jidaigeki series and movies. It was a special spot in the 1980s for use in Sonny Chiba's Japan Action Club series, such as Toei's SPACE SHERIFF: SHARIVAN (Uchu Keiji Shariban, 1983-1984), and many others.
The on-screen title ("Zankoku Majo Shiruba Katto") was changed from the original script and the preview-for-next-week's-episode ("Zankoku Majo no-Shiruba Katto"). Conversely, while this title card was on-screen, the narrator reads "Zankoku-no Majo Shiruba Katto" -- the original script and preview title.
13: PINK TIGER: TERROR AT THE AMUSEMENT PARK
Original Japanese Title: "Pink Tiger's Amusement Park Seige" (Pinku Taigaa-no Yuenchi Shugeki). Teleplay: SHOICHI SHIMAZU. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 10/07/1972.
This episode featured a major tie-in with the Yokohama Dreamland amusement park in Kanagawa Prefecture (now closed), just southwest of Tokyo. This location would later be employed again for KIKAIDA: THE 3-D MOVIE theatrical featurette.
The character of "Jinbei" -- one of Komyoji's early robots who works as a clown at Yokoyama Dreamland -- was played by verteran Toei actor Jun Tatara. Among his other memorable genre credits are "Gosaku Fuji," owner of the Avalon Horse Ranch in SPACE SHERIFF: GAVAN (1982-1983) and the wizard "Baaza," mentor to DINOSAUR TASK FORCE: ZYURANGER (Kyoryu Sentai Zyurenja, 1992-1993).
When Mitsuko receives a phone call, she answers in what is presumably the Komyoji home. The set used is the very same interior set used as various residences, redressed, in Episodes #5, #7, #11 and #12.
Treatening to blow up the Yokohama Dreamland amusement park in sadistic style was the Mishima Kenjikai's Yukio Mihashi as Dark Destructoid Pink Tiger.
14: SILVER TORTOISE: DESTRUCTOIDS REBORN
Original Japanese Title: "The Demonic Silver Tortoise Beckons Three Monsters" (Daimajin Gingame-ga Mitsu Kabutsu-o Yobu). Teleplay: SHUKEI NAGASAKA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 10/14/1972.
A benchmark in the series, "Silver Tortoise" is identified as the first in a generation of "New Dark Destructoids." This is because he is the first of the Destructoids not created under the forced labor of Dr. Komyoji. Since the original "Gang of 13" Dark Destructoids (originally plotted as 12 and then 26) were defeated by Kikaida, the new-wave of Destructoids are 10 times stronger than the previous android monsters, and built by other scientists cooperating with, or forced by, Professor Gill.
This "Gang of 13," the first thirteen Destructoids, are brought "back to life" in this episode, not to challenge Kikaida, but to engage in combat to see who is fit to fight under the command of Silver Tortoise. It would have made more sense to have all 13 Destructoids attack Kikaida -- but, the series would have ended there. Stupid Dark Destructoids. This "Destroy All Monsters"-setting, was first hinted at in Episode #37 of ULTRAMAN (1966-1967), but established as an event in such Toei Tokusatsu series as CAPTAIN ULTRA (Kyaputen Urutora, 1967) and GIANT ROBO (1967-1968).
This "event"-style of episode was brought back for Episode #13 of MASKED RIDER (1971-1973), "Tokageron & The Mutant Army." In Japan, television series are blocked in groups of 13, otherwise known as "Cours" ("season" in French); which allows the networks to gauge if the series will be extended or cancelled after a certain Cours. If you notice, most Japanese Tokusatsu series run in blocks of 13, in which story arcs and characters can change -- some shows span 13 (one Cours), 26 (two Cours), 39 (three Cours) or 52 (four Cours) episode runs.
After the success of MASKED RIDER, it became a tradition (established by Creative Producer Tohru Hirayama), that when a new series was picked up for a second or third Cours, Toei would produce a similar "special episode." This "special episode" would feature the revivial of all previous enemy monsters, against the lone hero, in a sort of "Mutant Battle Royale."
Such episodes were not the rule of thumb for every show, including INAZUMAN (1973-1974) and KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974), but did occur in Episode #13 of SUPERHUMAN BAROM-1 (1972) and Episode #14 of TRANSFORMING NINJA ARASHI (1972-1973). Producer Hirayama came up with the idea that such "Monster Melees" would be a great attraction for the theatrical featurettes showcased in Toei's seasonal "Manga Matsuri" roadshows. The event films that resulted, include MASKED RIDER VS. SHOCKER (1972), KIKAIDA: THE 3-D MOVIE (1972), MASKED RIDER V3 VS. DESTRON MUTANTS (1973), THE FIVE RIDERS VS. KING DARK (1974), and more.
The idea of introducing the significantly stronger "New Dark Destructoids," was that of writer Shukei "Hideka" Nagasaka (born 11/03/1941), one of the unsung behind-the-scenes heroes in the making of KIKAIDA. Nagasaka entered the world of filmmaking as a memeber of Toho Studio's Cinemaphotography Department, where he worked on Akira Kurosawa's YOJIMBO (1962). In 1966, he won the prestegious NHK Scenario Concours, and became a freelance screenwriter.
Nagasaka has contributed teleplays for popular television series such as SUMBERSION OF JAPAN (Nippon Chinbotsu, 1974) and SPECIAL INVESTIGATION FRONTLINE (Tokuso Saimae-sen, 1977-1986). Besides his work on KIKAIDA and KIKAIDA-01, he helped to shape other popular Toei Superhero series including AKUMAIZER 3 (Akumaiza Suri, 1976-1977) and VIGILANTE ZUBAT (Kaiketsu Zubatto, 1977-1978), as well as write scripts for radio dramas, such as MIYAMOTO MUSASHI (1977). Nagasaka was one of the people responsible in the creation of Kikaida's evil brother, "Hakaida."
The voices of the revived Dark Destructoids were performed by completely different voice actors than in their original appearances -- perhaps Professor Gill mixed up some of the parts that were picked up in Kikaida's wake?
The footage of the individual duels between Kikaida and Black Horse, Orange Ant and Green Mantis, are stock footage from the original respective episodes: #2, #3 and #6.
The Silver Tortoise suit was recycled in the production of KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974), and was adorned with horns and painted a deep red as "Crimson-Faced Tortoise" (aka "Red Tortoise," Episodes #9 - #11). The sublime Silver Tortoise was essayed by the Mishima Kenjikai's Yukio Mihashi.
15: GOLDEN BAT: CURSED SHADOW FROM THE PAST
Original Japanese Title: "The Cursed Apparition Of Golden Bat" (Kiniro Komori Noroi-no Kage). Teleplay: MASARU IGAMI. Director: HIDETOSHI KITAMURA. Broadcast Date: 10/21/1972.
"Taro Komyoji" (Yutaka Hayashi), the believed-dead brother of Mitsuko and Masaru, makes an appearance in this episode -- but, this is a Dark Destructoid trick! This Taro is actually the human guise of the fearsome "Golden Bat"!
In the late 1960s, Hayashi was the drummer for the Japanese pop quintet, "The Village Singers," and afterwards moved onto playing fast-talking reporters for comedy and variety shows on NHK and Fuji Television. Hayashi's best-known Tokusatsu role is that of racecar driver, "Hiroshi Jinkawa," in the 1973 Toho-Eiga production GODZILLA VS. MEGALON.
Because of the sudden reunion of sibbilings Taro, Mitsuko and Masaru, Jiro feels like a third wheel, and goes down to the riverside to play his guitar in solitude. Later, when accussed of letting Taro become injured by the Dark, Jiro excuses himself to take a nap!
"Taro Komyoji" was originally planned as "Ichiro Komyoji" (first son), but was nixed when Ishimori wanted the name for the human guise of Kikaida-01, in his tragic manga version of "Jinzoningen Kikaida" (faithfully brought to life as KIKAIDER: THE ANIMATION).
Ironically, the audience is never told much about Dr. Komyoji's wife -- the main characters never mention her -- nor do we see a photograph of her in the entirety of the series.
The strange and dusty bedroom/lab in the Komyoji residence (with the spiral staircase) is, again, part of the same living room set first seen in Episodes #5, #7, #11 and #12. Their didn't seem to be any consistency in showing the interior of the Komyoji home, most likely due to the pre-home video age -- during this time, these shows were not meant to be scrutinized so closely. Especially over 30 years later.
Prolific Toei writer Masaru Igami, who wrote some of the most popular television shows of the 1960s and 1970s (THE SAMURAI, RED SHADOW, GIANT ROBO, MASKED RIDER, etc.) -- as well as some feature films -- was asked to recap the characters and situations for this episode. While this might seem odd to those with the show from the beginning, this was employed to introduce the legion of new viewers who were just tuning into to the show, giving them a quick run-down of the whats and whys of KIKAIDA.
Golden Bat (played by the Mishima Kenjikai's Yukio Mihashi) is a throwback to the earlier episodes in terms of Dark Destructoid costume construction, which were generally created by adding segmented foam rubber pieces over track suits, and topped by a helmet-like head piece.
As the series became more popular, the staff found itself with a slightly larger budget in which to spend on the making of its monsters. More and more, as the series progresses, viewers can see that the Dark Destructoid suits started to become huge and singular foam rubber costumes, with the track suits long forgotten.
16. ROUGE JELLYFISH: INVITATION TO THE RIVER STYX
Original Japanese Title: "Rouge Female Jellyfish Invites You To The River Styx" (Onna Beni Kurage Sanzunogawa-e Maneku). Teleplay: SHUKEI NAGASAKA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 10/28/1972.
This episode marks the first "official" appearance of Dark's Android Women, the uniform versions of these drones can repleat with black leotards, white triangular collars, and topped off with fishnet stockings (and, of course, Chuck Taylors). The lady drones switched to pink leotards for the Pink Armadillo episode.
The forgotten subplot of the Dark raising capital, through the sales of its deadly technologies to unscrupulous foreign powers, returns with the development of the florescent-powered poison mini-jellyfish mutations.
The interesting cast for this episode features Noriko Matsutani as the enviornmentally-conscious "Miki Watanabe." Matsutani would also be featured in the main cast of the popular Tsuburaya Productions superhero series ULTRAMAN TARO (Urutoraman Taro, 1973-1974) as ZAT Agent "Izumi Moriyama."
Miki's gruff-but-loveable uncle, "Kohei Wada," is played by the late Hisao Tazai, better-known to Japanese film fans around the world as "Boss Tako" from Shochiku Studio's eternally popular TORA-SAN (Otoko-wa Tsuraiyo) film series.
The fight scenes were largely staged at a fantstic and oft-employed location, an abandoned apartment building project affectionately known as the "Obake Mansion" (Haunted Condominium). This odd and fantastic location, located in the Setagaya Ward, was discovered by Creative Producer Tohru Hirayama (while producing MASKED RIDER), and was used in dozens of episodes of numerous series (and movies). The Obake Mansion became a familiar fixture for Tokusatsu Fans watching their favorite television superheroes in the 1970s.
Kikaida names his "Spinning Attack" (Kaiten Attack) move for the first time. He originally used this manuver on Pink Tiger in Episode #13. Kikaida also avoids the "Jellyfish Ink" pollution attack with the ridiculously named hand manuver called the "Super Clean"! There are some things just don't translate into English well.
Female Dark Destructoid, Rouge Jellyfish, was played by the Mishima Kenjikai's ever-diligent Yukio Mihashi.
17: RED HORNET: HOSTAGE TERROR
Original Japanese Title: "Red Hornet's Terrifying Abduction Plan" (Aka Kumabachi-no Hitojichi Keikaku). Teleplay: SHOICHI SHIMAZU. Director: YASUTADA NAGANO. Broadcast Date: 11/04/1972.
This fast-moving episode was shot on location in beautiful Ikaho, and introduces "Sayoko," played by Hiroko Aoki. A great guest character, Sayoko makes a wonderful companion for Hanpei, and actually brings out a heroic and honorable side in him.
At some point in the shooting of this episode, the fastener on Red Hornet's costume was damaged or broken, which explains why one can see the line along the Destructoid's spine "opening" several times during this adventure. Instead of sending the costume back to Tokyo for time consuming repairs, the crew simply tried to shoot around this problem as best as possible. The show must go on!
"Pollution Commissioner Oyama" was played by veteran actor Shin Tokudaiji, who debuted in YOUNG MASTER OF THE UNIVERSITY for Shochiku Kinema in 1933. Tokudaiji, who later moved to Toei, appeared in an astonishing 227 films for a number of studios (mainly in the jidaigeki and yakuza genres), and also appeared in numerous television series, such as Toei's TALES OF THE SHINSENGUMI (Shinsengumi Funryoku, 1965).
Tokudaiji's Tokusatsu television roles include "Kageretsu Fusai" in Episodes #40 & #41 of Toei's RED SHADOW: THE MASKED NINJA (1967-1968), "Dr. Kihara" in Episode #71 of Toei's MASKED RIDER (1972-1973), Ninja Master "Koshin Koji" in P-Productions' VIGILANT LION MARU (Kaiketsu Raion Maru, 1972-1973), and "Tsumura" in Episodes #45 & #46 of Toei's MASKED RIDER V3 (1973-1974).
The manager of the Ikaho Grand Hotel was played by former Toho character actor Gen Nakajima who appeared in the war spectacles SUBMARINE I-57 WILL NOT SURRENDER (Sensuikan I-57 Kofuku-sezu, 1959) and I BOMBED PEARL HARBOR (Taiheiyo-no Arashi, 1960). Among his genre roles, he played one of the truck drivers in GODZILLA VS. MEGALON (1973).
Oyama's daughter, "Yumiko," was played by starlet Mitsuko Sasahara, who made her screen debut in the 1971 Shochiku comedy WOMEN ARE THE HOME OF MEN (Onna-wa Otoko-no Furusato-yo). She also appeared in the television series THE YOUNG TEACHER! (Wakai! Sensei).
Red Hornet's Android Suicide Squadron, which appear in this episode, all possess designation marks on their foreheads, and energy tank caps on the crowns of their heads. Here, credit should be given to the the suit actors of the Mishima Kenjikai who performed as the hordes of Androidmen ("Get'um Guys"). They include Toshiaki Kikuchi, Kou Hayami, Yukio Mihashi (who played Red Hornet), Takeshi Enomoto, Chiyota Watanabe, Hiroshi Nakai, Yoshikazu Inagawa, Norio Yanagisawa, Kimihisa Utsunomiya, and group leader Kazuo Mishima. "Giru! Giru!"
18: BLACK CHAMELEON: THE GRAND HEIST
Original Japanese Title: "Black Chameleon's Elusive Hijack Operation" (Kuro Kamereon Maboroshi-no Goudatsu Sakusen). Teleplay: RYOTOKU WATANABE & MASAYUKI SHIMADA. Director: YASUTADA NAGANO. Broadcast Date: 11/11/1972.
Accompanying the regular cast once again is "Sayoko" (Hiroko Aoki), who was also featured in the previous episode. It's too bad that she didn't stay on to become a regular cast member as a foil for Hanpen.
The powerful element discovered originally by Dr. Nakabori in Episode #10, Uratorium, returns as a target for Professor Gill in his lust for world conquest. The element is a play on the name of the radioactive metal Uranium.
Because this teleplay was co-written by Toei Executive Producer Ryotoku Watanabe, the production crew pulls out all the stops. A healthier budget is evident on-screen with numerous extras, plentiful pyrotechnics, a larger scale, a nicely constructed Dark Destructoid, and a name guest star.
The prolific Yoshiro Kitahara guest stars as "Captain Ichimura," in charge of the Uratonium shipment which Black Chameleon plans to hijack. Kitahara (born 03/11/1929) was a former Daiei Studio leading man, who made his film debut in 1953 with MODERN GAMBLERS STORY: BLOOD FEUD (Gendai Bakuto Chimatsuri). He appeared in 78 films, before moving to Toei, and other studios, where he appeared in numerous television series, such as MOMOTARO SAMURAI.
Kitahara is better known in the States for his appearances in several of the 1960s GAMERA films for Daiei. He played "Sakurai" in the original GAMERA (Daikaiju Gamera, 1965), "Professor Amano" in GAMERA VS. BARUGON (Daikaiju Ketto Gamera tai Barugon, 1966), "Dr. Aoki" in GAMERA VS. GYAOS (Daikaiju Kuchusen Gamera tai Gyaosu, 1967), and Masao's father in GAMERA VS. VIRAS (Gamera tai Uchukaiju Birasu, 1968).
He appeared as "Henry Yoshihara" in the first episode of Tsuburaya Productions' EMERGENCY COMMAND: 10-4/10-10 (Kinkyu Shirei 10-4/10-10, 1972). He also was featured as "Dr. Koichiro Shimura" (Episode #30), as "Katayama" (Episode #56), and as "Kiyoshi Aono" (Episode #87) in Toei's MASKED RIDER (1972-1973), as well as "Professor Takefuji" in Episode #4 of SECRET TASK FORCE: GORANGER (1975-1977).
Kitahara's other notable Tokusatsu appearances inlcude "Professor Chujo" in Episode #8 of MASKED RIDER X (1974), "Professor Taro Kosaka," a regular character in MASKED RIDER AMAZON (1974-1975), and "Captain Marui" in SPACE IRONMEN: KYODYNE (Uchu Testsujin Kyodain, 1976-1977).
One of his final genre roles was that of "Commander Nango" of UGM in Episodes #13, #17, #22 and #24 of Tsuburaya Productions' ULTRAMAN 80 (Urutoraman Eitei, 1980-1981). Kitahara moved into voice acting for animation series, such as TMS' LUPIN III (Rupan Sansei), and also dubbed the voice of Lorne Green for the Japanese version of the original BATTLESTAR: GALACTICA television series.
This is the first episode to feature the karaoke version of the song "Go! Go! Kikaida."
Watch carefully, one scene features Jiro jumping, and as he tumbles through the air, he doesn't have his guitar on his back. But, when he lands, viola, the guitar is right there -- strapped to his back.
Note the stock footage in this episode: the shots of the Dark helicopter were culled from footage used in Episode #2, while Kiakida's first appearance, including the falling rocks, are taken from Episode #1.
The sneaky Black Chameleon was animatedly brought to life by the Mishima Kenjikai's Yukio Mihashi.
Originally, Kikaida's "Spinning Attack" move, was scripted as his more familiar "Giant Swing Throw."
19: KING CRAB MAROON: KEEPER OF THE DEATH RAY
Original Japanese Title: "Enter Crimson King Crab: The Grim Reaper-Beast!" (Shinigamiju Kabutogani Enji Sanjo!). Teleplay: SHUKEI NAGASAKA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 11/18/1972.
A strange character actor with the psuedonym, "Eddie Arab" (!), plays the human form of Crimson King Crab seen only at the top of the episode. Upon searching further information, we could not find any other credits for this mysterious thespian.
Reiko Mitsumori, a jewelry store clerk being pursued by Crimson King Crab, was played by Polydor recording artist Nono Matsuzawa. She had a hit single with "Kokoro-no Heiya" (A Room For The Heart). Mastsuzawa also played the "Rose Woman" (the human guise of Shocker Mutant "Bararanga") in Episode #75 of MASKED RIDER (1971-1973).
Look closely: the set used for Reiko Mitsumori's apartment is again the same interior set used for Episodes #5, #7, #11, #12 and #13 -- this time, the set is painted blue, instead of the previous yellow.
This episode is notable for shooting on a number of suburban Tokyo neighborhoods, instead of the usual unpopulated forrested areas and barren quarries.
Sweating to the hits as Dark Destructoid Crimson King Crab was the Mishima Kenjikai's tireless Yukio Mihashi.
20: BLUE WATER SCORPION: THE SKULL WEED CONSPIRACY
Original Japanese Title: "Cold-Blooded Blue Waterbeetle's Skull Plan" (Reikoku! Aotagame-no Dokuro Keikaku). Teleplay: SHUKEI NAGASAKA. Director: TOYOHIKO OKAYAMA. Broadcast Date: 11/25/1972.
Playing "Ryuhei Asanuma," the reservoir foreman, is the late Hiroshi Unayama, who got his break in 1962 appearing in the TBS series THE JUDO GENERATION (Judo Ichidai). The next year, he was featured as "Detective Shimada" in Akira Kurosawa's HIGH AND LOW (Tengoku to Jigoku). After this role, he primarily appeared in high profile television productions, such as NHK's Taiga Drama THE BLAZING GRASS FIELDS, Toei's ZENIGATA HEIJI (1966-1984), THE BODYGUARDS (Za Bodeigaddo, 1974), THE GORILLA-7 (Za Gorira Sebun, 1975), Unayama also guest starred as "Dr. Goro Yamagata" in Episode #15 of KIKAIDA-01 (1973-1974).
He appeared twice on SECRET TASK FORCE: GORANGER (1975-1977) as "Professor Koto" in Episode #11 and #70 (a role originally played by Yoshiro Kitahara, another KIKAIDA veteran). By the 1980s, Unayama found if difficult to get work and was reduced to appearing in Nikkatsu's Pink Eiga (soft-core erotica). He committed suicide in 1984.
Due to the hectic pace of production, and the extreme abuse of costumes and props, Kikaida was granted a new costume from Kaimai Productions, starting with this episode, to the tune of 30,000 Yen (then equal to approximately $1,700 USD, today equal to $2,700 USD).
Yukio Mihashi of the Mishima Kenjikai labored under the bulky Dark Destructoid costume for the bitter Blue Waterbeetle.
Hanpei's imitation of Jiro's entrance is considered by some, to be one of funniest moments in Tokusatsu History.
To be continued...